Sunday's race was the Trail River Run 10K, starting and ending at the Hyde Creek Recreation Centre in Port Coquitlam. I got there before the half marathon was supposed to start at 8 AM, but they were running a bit late so it went off at about 10 minutes after, and myself and Arnold watched them go until they all disappeared around the corner. He was racing the 5K but still had to register. He told me he was running the Surrey Marathon next Sunday, and he did the South Fraser 8K with us on Saturday, so I've possibly found someone who's more insane than I am.
We were about 10 minutes late starting our race too, heading out at about 8:55, with the 5K race scheduled to start 5 minutes later. We rounded the corner of the rec centre and headed up a wide gravel path for a few hundred meters, then turned right and continued for a few hundred more. Next we were directed onto a concrete path for another couple of hundred meters, before running a block down a residential street, at which point we hit a fork where they had cops blocking off traffic for us. The arrows on the road pointed for the half marathoners to go left and for us to go right, so we turned right and ran a little ways more until they sent us through a gate and up onto the dike.
By this time we were spread out pretty well, and I could see a guy and the lead woman a couple of hundred meters ahead of me, and one other fellow about 100 meters behind them, but that was it. We headed down the wide gravel path on the dike, turning right, and I kept the fellow in front in sight, and now we started passing some of the slower half marathoners, and bunches of them passed us going back the other way. I kept looking for the first 10Ker coming back wearing a white bib instead of the half marathoner blue bib, and finally he passed me, heading back at warp speed. Next were 2 other guys close together, and a little while later 2 other guys and the lead woman running in a small chase pack, and I finally saw the turnaround point with the aid station tent up ahead.
A half marathoner was there when I hit the tent, and we grabbed some water and I headed back while he carried on the other way. It wasn't until I'd gone at least 100 meters before I saw the next person behind me, a young fellow who looked exhausted. Still, I had to make sure to keep my pace up, you never know when someone will get a second wind. Plus I could still see the guy in front of me, who'd dropped off the chase pack, so I concentrated on trying to catch him. I made a little headway, but as it turned out he was just too far ahead, and I saw him speed up as we approached the fork in the road. I came out onto the street and almost went down a wrong road but a cop yelled at me that I was going the wrong way, and directed me to the right road.
I headed back down the street, hit the concrete path for a bit, and then turned onto the wide gravel path, only a kilometer or so to go now. You could see for a long way and I saw the next fellow way up ahead, and then he turned the corner for the last few hundred meters. I hit the corner myself less than a minute later, and sped up as best I could, finally hearing people cheering and a cowbell ringing. I came up to the corner by the rec centre and there was a large group of spectators standing there coaxing us in, and then I saw the finish line and heard the announcer call my name, and I sprinted over the line!
They had bottles of water waiting for us and pears but nothing else. They did have pancakes 2 for 2 bucks, with the money going to salmon habitat rehabilitation, so I got a couple of loonies out of my car and got a plate of those, and then went with my bell to cheer in the finishers. Quite a few had come in when all of a sudden my bell stopped ringing, because the ball inside had broken off from the small rod it was soldered to! I'd paid next to nothing for it, but that was beside the point, it was still disappointing! I've since fixed it with some fishing tackle and I'll have it out to the next race.
Just before it broke Niel Wakelin, who is the B.C. regional rep for the Running Room, came running in, he'd just been on a training run since he had to be here anyway. He asked me if I knew why the finish arch was lying deflated on the ground off to the side. I said I hadn't noticed it before, but I think it was already down when I'd come in. He speculated that the generator just didn't have enough power to run the sound system and keep the arch inflated at the same time, he'd seen it happen at another race.
They seemed to be falling farther and farther behind schedule, but results were finally available. I went and took a look and saw I'd finished 8th overall and won my 50+ age group. I went and asked the race director whether there were age group awards for the 10K. He said only for the top person in each category, and medals only went to the top 3 overall males and females in each race. In the 10K and half marathon the winner of each category got a certificate.
My friend Andre was ecstatic, as he'd won the 5K and he's never won a race before. His brother visiting from Alberta also ran the race, along with their wives, and their young children ran the kids races, so it was quite a day for them.
They got the half and one kilometer kids races going at 11:30, an hour late. Still, there were a lot of participants, some quite determined and running like little pros, and they all had a great time.
Finally they had the awards, but it was so late in the day now that there weren't a lot of people left. Andre went up and got his medal, they announced him as "the champion", I got my certificate, it's actually quite nice, and Andre took my picture for me. We also received a certificate worth half off the entry fee for any 2012 or 2013 event organized by Trio Events.
With that I said goodbye to Andre and his family, Arnold had left long ago, and headed for home.
Results are up, and Andre was 1st of 46 overall, with a time of 23:51, and Arnold was 7th (4th male), posting 27:55. I was 8 of 67 OA in my race and 1 of 5 in my AG, stopping the clock at 44:48.
My next race is the 5 Peaks Buntzen Lake 9.5K Sport Race in Anmore on September 29 at 9 AM.