A HUGE crowd gathered at the Lancaster YMCA this morning for the 3rd annual Turkey Trot. I got there about an hour early and when I checked in I was given a hand written bib number – 489 (I think.) Later I saw one of the last registrants with a bib number of six hundred something! Anyone want to guess who that last minute registrant was?
Clay and Vanessa Lopez and I were talking before the race and then we headed out for a warm up. None of us had a Garmin or even started our watch so I am not sure how far we went. I am calling it about 1.7…… In the line up area I got to chatting with some of my running friends. Valerie and I reminisced about all those summer runs and how Lauren wasn’t there to beat us today! Valerie just wanted to break 27 minutes so I invited her to hand with me and promised her that we would beat it.
As the race began six hundred “runners” started to run. Now a lot of these “runners” took off real fast for a hundred meters or so and then pretty quickly they were slowing down. I saw Clay a little way ahead of me and thought maybe I could sneak up behind him. I was thinking it would be fun to follow closely behind till the finish and then see if I could sneak by at the tape. Valerie hung with me and we all settled into a pace around 8 minutes a mile. Little by little, though Clay started pulling away. We headed out of the park and over the freeway on K8. We continued up K8 all the way to 20th street west. A block before 20th I recall a lady out there giving everyone high fives.
Valerie and I hung together down 20th and passed Alan Brown. He said something about the course not matching the one on the map. I yelled, “they had a map?” Valerie and I kept passing people little by little all the way back on L and then 15th West. Valerie started to fall back a little on 15th. With some encouragement she caught back up. Going up the bridge she fell back a little bit again. Going over the bridge we ran down the other side and into the park for the finish. My final time was about 25 minutes. Valerie was just a few seconds back – obliterating that 27 minute goal.
Of course, afterwards we found out that the course was not supposed to goal all the way to 20th. Some of the later runners told me that that same lady, the one giving high fives, she was directing people to turn a block shy of 20th. So, our 5K race was probably about 3.3
Afterward I had a nice talk with Eddie Spears. I just found out that he is another valley runner who made it into the Boston Marathon. He qualified at a marathon I had never heard of – the Ojai to Sea marathon. That sounds like a FAST one! He described it as a 10K around Ojai, a run down the path to the beach, and then a 10K around Ventura! Next June- that is a plan!
So, that is how I started my Thanksgiving morning. I hope everyone had an awesome Thanksgiving Day!