Here goes for the longer version of Sundays Great West Run. I 've never run this race before so when somebody at the running club suggested entering this one I signed up.
Met up with some of the other Road Runners just before 7 am and headed off up to Exeter. As is common place in the run up to such races the talk soon turned to our Great Expectations. We were all under the same impression that despite the advertised hill between mile 7 and 8 the route would be pretty flat and there were chances of pb's or at least a chance to push close to one. Arrived in plenty of time and got parked quickly, drop off the bag and then a short walk to the start. By now the clouds had cleared and the forecast strong winds were little more than a breeze.
Then we were off. Started off with Bev from the running club and though it wasn't planned ran the race with her. First mile was the normal mad sprint first mile not helped by the fact it was downhill, first mile done in 6.32 ouch. Then it was out into the countryside. The second mile came in at just under 7 mins still feeling ok but made the decision to slow down a bit. Next couple of miles were pretty standard countryside miles a bit of up and down but nothing to demanding. Then we hit the first out and back section a mile out and a chance to see the leaders, very fast they always look as if their in a different race. Then there the return mile and a chance to share a bit of banter with those going in the opposite direction. Another flat section saw us go throught half way in just over 46 mins. Then we were on to the hill which seemed to go quite well until we turned left and headed up still further. Not particularly steep but just went on and on for approx a mile. Back into town before for heading out on the final out and back section which the organisers described as interesting. Interestinging my backside this was one seemingly endless souless main road with several major undulations. As soon as we realised what lay ahead all thoughts of pb's went out the window. Now it was just a case of getting the miles down all the enjoyment of the first half of the race soon disappeared and I must admit the mind drifted to all those countryside miles you lot are putting in and the sense of enjoyment you get from being on the fabulous trails. Maybe just maybe. Managed to did in for a bit of a Kenyan finish in front of the crowds.
So over all impressions. Despite the mile markers being out, mile 2 was 0.3 of a mile out. And why oh why wasn't there a course profile available. If there had been so many people wouldn't have had expectations of a pb. Of the 18 of us from the running club both experience and newbies nobody got very closer to the times they were hoping for The organsation was pretty good. The baggage collection was second to none my bag was out and on the table with a lady shoouting out my nuber. The first half was ideal the second half wasn't. Would I recommend it, not sure there better ones out there thats a definate just make sure you're aware what lays ahead. I certainly won't be rushing back there and that was the sense I got from the others. A big plus was that Bev finished as the 12th lady.
Just leaves me to wish all you blobs the very best of luck out there for Saturday, it real does promise to be such a very special day and i sincerely wish that i could be there with you, maybe next year. Stay safe out there look after each other but most of all you SUPERSTARS enjoy it and party long and hard.
I cant wait i'm so excited for all of you.
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