On Saturday, March 2nd, I ran the Dave Reed Spring Classic 5K, starting and finishing at Lumberman's Arch in Stanley Park. It was raining fairly heavily before the race, but by the time we started out at 9 AM it was down to almost nothing. The race director gave us some brief instructions, and then a quick 5 second countdown and we were off!
We ran down the wide gravel path and then hit a small uphill, and I saw Bill Chang running about 20 feet in front of me. Next we hit concrete and soon Georgia Street loomed in front of us. Try as I might I couldn't make any headway on Bill, but as we reached Georgia and ran on the sidewalk alongside it, I came up on Vas. We exchanged pleasantries about how much we were enjoying the race, but soon I ran ahead of him as we turned and headed back into the park. Up ahead we turned right for about 100 meters before hitting a turnaround, and back we went, running straight until we hit the seawall.
I concentrated on trying to keep my pace up, having not run at all since the 30K trail race last Sunday. We ran past the naval base entrance on Deadman's Island and soon we reached the lighthouse, where the woman volunteering there yelled at us "You're almost there!" I love the volunteers, but it's become a joke amongst the racers about them doing that to us in most races now, when we're nowhere near being "Almost there!" I told a guy running with me "Yeah, we're almost there, only about 1.3 Ks to go!", and he said that he wished they wouldn't do that.
Next we went around another corner, and Dave Palermo was there to cheer us on, yelling "1100 meters to go!" Much more helpful!
I'd been able to see Bill for most of the race, and now he had disappeared, but I picked up the pace a little and passed a couple of people. With a few hundred yards to go I heard a spectator yell "Come on Cathy, reel him in!" to a woman I'd passed, and so I stepped it up some more, as we actually would soon be "almost there". It wasn't long before I could hear "B.C. Johnny" Atkinson announcing the incoming racers, and we rounded the corner and there about 150 meters ahead was the finish line. I passed the guy just ahead of me and gave it all I had, managing to hold him off as we ran down the chute.
Photo by Teresa Nightingale
Joey Gargaro had crossed a few seconds ahead of me and was bent over trying to catch his breath. I said "Good race Joey!" and he was only able to give me a weak high five, having given it everything he had on the course, and leaving nothing out there. Vas came in right afterward and we talked a bit before heading over to the food tables. They had Clif bars, bananas, oranges and a massive amount of delicious melt-in-your-mouth goodies, home baked by the VFAC club members hosting the race.
Photo by Teresa Nightingale
Joe Astoria was staffing one of the tables and he asked how my race went. Just then Bill Chang walked up. I told him I really enjoyed it but I couldn't beat Bill today, and Joe said I'd get him next time. Ingo and Arnold walked up and we all talked about the race for awhile while eating our treats. Johnny called out Rob Daniel's name so I knew the end of the race was probably not too far off, and soon after Elsie Fontaine came in with husband Marc as her guide. Teresa got a couple of great pictures of them running the race.
After cheering them in I ran to my car to get my jacket and camera and headed back.
They were calling out draw prize winners, and then the awards presentation began. I'd talked to Marc Pinckard before the race and he said he hadn't been doing any speed work but that didn't stop him from finishing 13th overall and winning our age group. Mirabelle Tinio and Lenore Montgomery won their age groups too, with Lenore posting an elite time for her AG. Nicola Swain from my club, Rob Haines, and Rob Daniel all finished third in theirs, and Lynette Baldock was second.
We'd been talking to Ingo and I heard Johnny call his name out as winning the bronze in his AG. The other 2 winners had gone up to get their medals, but no Ingo. I looked around for him and finally spotted him talking to Rob Haines, and told him about his medal. He was totally surprised and waited until they finished the remaining presentations before going up and getting it. I'd forgotten that I had my camera in my pocket, but remembered it now and got him to pose for a picture, the best I could do for his photo op.
They were packing things up now and they told people to take food with them if they wanted. Some people were grabbing goodies and boxing them up, but I'd already stuffed my face enough. Like one woman said, just one of those cookies contained as many calories as we'd run off in the race. They did have lots of Clif bars left over so myself and Arnold grabbed a couple to take with us, we just couldn't eat anything else right then.
Johnny and the other volunteers only had the sound system to dismantle by this time, so we decided to head out, and we'd see each other at another race soon. A good time was had by all, and everyone agreed that VFAC knows how to put on a great event!
Results are up, and I was 54th overall out of 162, and 10 of 18 in my age group, with a time of 21:47. Slower than usual, but considering the circumstances, I was satisfied with my race.
Here's the course map:
Race photos by Teresa Nightingale:
27 minute video (contains almost everyone):
5.5 minute version (the start and top finishers):
My next race is the Lakeside Resort 5K in Penticton, on March 10 at 10 AM.