Sunday, 31 July 2016

RACE 10 - Millbrook Monster

The last race in my July Triple mini-challenge, this was another tough run. Work continues to be difficult and the hours long, so I have hardly run at all this month. As such, I was tired before the race had even started and slightly off my form.

Over 200 runners packed into the starting area. The race began and we were immediately into a 5km climb. There was a mixed bag of steepness and some flat sections, but it was essentially half an hour of going up. I thought I managed fairly well, although still had to power-hike parts of the last kilometre. There was also a bit of overtaking and then being overtaken again on this stretch.

Some great views on the way up and a quick pitstop for a drink at the water station just the other side of the crest. The next 4km were downhill, so a welcome change. However, it's easy to run too quick here and tire out. I suspect I had a bit of that and was really feeling it for the last 3km of the race.

With about 1.5km to go the route takes you pretty much to the finish line and then swoops you away for a final climb - cruel. Around the 9km mark there's a long series of steps that just finishes you off. I had to walk those. I knew they were coming, but still had no energy left. Other runners were starting to overtake me during the last quarter hour of running, which is a little hard to take, but I wasn't expecting a good time from this race.

Having finally seen the end of the steps, the course swings round for the last descent to the finish line. The gathered crowd was very loud and encouraging and that helped me put on a sprint finish. My support crew (aka mum, dad, Yvonne & Niamh) gathered round to help this extremely tired runner get me some more water to drink and be with me as I slowly recovered.

It was also another great show of runner camaraderie as racers encouraged each other through the tough sections and thanked the marshals as we passed by. The prize for completing was a free chip butty from the local chip shop, but I just had no stamina or will left to queue for it. So I left my fellow Greyhounds early to get home (passing a much quieter local chippy on the way!). Well done to Allan for winning the VM50 category :)

1 comment:

  1. Congratulations Matt, for staying the pace and finishing well. Race 10 completed!! HORIZONS TEAM