WE have completed the 8th annual Nutty Runners 5k! This one was a bit of a challenge. Well, the main challenge was the weather. We are in the midst of the wettest winter I can remember here in the Antelope Valley. The race is held at Marie Kerr Park and it typically uses the dirt paths that go around the park. These paths, though, when they are wet get really mushy and slick. I did not want to try to have a bunch of novice runners and walkers experience a mud run when that was not what they had signed up for.
Friday, the day before the race was one of the wettest storms of the season. Checking the forecast I held out hope that Saturday would be okay. The forecast kept putting low chance of rain during the hours of 7 – 10. I sent out an email attesting to this in hopes that the rain would not scare everyone off.
I also made plans to revise the course. Since we have a bib timing company I was able to set up a multiple lap course that stuck to the parking lot by the pool and the gravel parking lot by the amphitheater… which were both run-able rain or shine…
As we got up and got ready Saturday we were thrilled to see dry pavement and a thinning of the clouds. By race time the sun was out and it was a lovely day for a run!
Before the race there was some discussion among Erik Ruble, Oscar Gutierrez, Joe Kim and myself regarding the master’s level bobble head trophy. Steve Brumwell was out of town and Erik is injured. Who among the three of us would take the trophy? I was kind of thinking the Joe would. He is coming off an injury himself but his times on Strava lately looked better than mine. Oscar has lots of mileage of late, but he has been running lots of slow marathons….
As the race began the three of us where pretty close together. Joe and Oscar got a few steps on me but I hung on about 5 seconds back for the first lap. As we began the second lap I was struggling to maintain contact going through the gravel field. On the u-turn I noticed Grant Barnett well ahead of us. It occurred to me that he had just turned 40 and our bobble head discussion was for naught. With less incentive I dropped back as Oscar and Joe pulled farther away. I could see that Oscar was getting away from Joe.
Behind me were my assistant Larry Oman and I kept spotting Krysti Ruble as well. So, as I entered lap 3 I had incentive to maintain. On the last U-turn Krysti was fairly close so I accelerated upon entering the parking lot. She blamed Erik for warning me of her presence ( he was course monitor at the driveway) but I knew where she was… I only beat her by 3 seconds….
I was happy with my time. I finished the course in 22:19 My Garmin read the course a tad short at 3.07, but U-turns tend to throw GPS readings off a bit. I know Grant had it at exactly 3.11. The 22:19 5K is slightly better – age graded than last weeks 10K: 68.29 to 67.42