Saturday, August 22, 2015

Battle of Stonington

Stonington, CT
August 18, 2015

Over 200 came to the Borough on a sweltering Tuesday late summer evening to do battle of a different sort:  two laps around the borough for a 5K race, followed by drinks dockside at the Dogwatch. 

I arrived about an hour early to collect my chip/bib, ran a solo warm-up and came back drenched in sweat.  Milled about on the library grounds with WTAC peers and a few NRA frenemies waiting for the race to commence.

Mile 1:  Exchanged places with Tommy two to three times.  Ran pretty much side-by-side until Cannon Square (actual cannons used in the Battle of Stonington), where he pulled ahead.  Mile 1 split:  5:47.  We won't be approaching any records here tonight.  Let's just try real hard to keep the pace sub-6.
About 1/2 mile into the race,
with Tommy leading our pack and Tammaro on my shoulders.

Mile 2:  It looks like a pack of four way ahead of us, and a pack of four that I'm in (or just trailing steps behind).  NRA president Mike Tammaro passed just ahead of me, but fortunately I had checked his age with Steve at the start of the race and verified he's still in his 40s. Mile 2 split:  5:54.  All right then!  I had feared a 6:15 or so.

Mile 2: Bringing up the rear of our little pack
Grimacing as I make the effort to stay sub-6 in the HHH weather
Mile 3:  I give what little I have left in the hot humid run, and finish 6 seconds behind Tommy in 18:06.  Final mile split 5:55.

Final time:  18:06 (5:50 average pace).  8th of 211, 1st of 59 in my age group.  Full results here.

Obviously, I would have preferred to go sub-18, but I don't run well in the heat, and am happy with my time and place, as well as very consistent splits.  Chris took 3rd in a road PR of 16:17!  Shara won outright amongst the females, and Mike B placed.  After a short WTAC cool-down, we enjoyed drinks at the Dogwatch and an awards ceremony where all of the above took home awards of cash and/or a bottle of wine.

Pilfering from Beth's write-up, while the more important facet of this race commemorates Stonington repelling the British during the War of 1812, this race also serves as the culmination of weekly summer fun runs on roughly the same course.  On most Tuesdays since Memorial Day, Jana, Matthew, and I would run the Stonington Fun Runs, along with Mike B and many CT-based WTAC runners.  The Stonington Fun Runs are the quintessential summer event to me, and I'm always a little sad to see them end.  The pungent fish processing plant smells, the wafting salt air as you descend Omega, the commanding cannons and their ever-present reminder of the War of 1812, the stately historic row houses, and the laughter and mingling of friends and frenemies dockside post-run are all fond memories of mine that I cherish and will look forward to their resumption next summer.



  1. Very nice write up! And Mike T is a young punk, younger and far far far less gray than our Mikey B. He is no longer the NRA president, Michelle Thierault San Antonio is the current NRA president. OMG a WOMAN president, what is this world coming to??? Guess I don't really count as WTAC? I paid my dues.... And YES I messed up my goals the more difficult should have been A, it is now all straightened out. Thank you for keeping me honest.

    1. Yes, of course you're WTAC! Just so many WTAC'erc that I caught up that night that I didn't list all individually (e.g., Polly, Tanner, Denise, Paul, CarolAnn, Roy, Josh, etc.). Thanks for keeping ME honest on NRA president ; I didn't know.