Thursday, November 24, 2016
Last year Matthew and I ran the Washington Trust Family Turkey Trot 5K in Pawtucket. This year, between my employer no longer sponsoring the race and a need to finish up earlier to go to my brother's house in Narragansett for T-day dinner, we looked for an earlier starting race. We found two: Fit Trail 5K in Cumberland, and the Pie Run in Newport, both with an 8:30am start. We had seriously considered the Fit Trail 5K until Matthew researched it and found the trails were more like wide XC trails instead of single-track, so we opted for Pie.
Arrived at the Newport County Y about an hour early, and the crowds were already gathering. Middletown Police already had Valley Road completely closed in both directions; that was exciting. I exercised poor form in not pre-registering, but there was plenty of time to register and still get a short warm-up on the course. I had studied the course map, as well as at Matthew's suggestion, Tom's race recap from 2015. On the warm-up and while milling about, saw locals Carol and James Rose and NRA runners Dave Tetreault and Peter Barbera, but we also saw an overabundance of people wearing turkey hats and guys with shorts over their tights.
|One of the many turkey-hats worn during the race.|
I get this one; it's Thanksgiving Day after all.
at this race.
RW opinion: No way! Are you kidding?
Mile 1: Lined up about two rows back in a field that was 900+ deep. A guy in a pilgrim suit made some brief remarks about something, then he tried but failed to use an airhorn to start the race. The runners surged ahead anyway and the race was off. Runners were pulling ahead but I tried to keep it conservative. 5:52
|Temps in mid-30s. Opted for short shorts, singlet, and thin gloves.|
Pic by Jana.
|Crossing the start line mat. Only time I would be close to Matthew.|
Courtesy Spitler FB page.
Mile 2: Beautiful run along the water. I was starting to retake a few of the runners that passed me in the first mile, including college student James Rose. 6:05
|Course map: mostly an out-and-back along the coast|
Mile 3: The mile starts with a 25 foot downhill to run near the ocean out to Sachuest Beach and a turnaround. I picked it up a bit downhill and that carried me for a while on the flat section, but I was starting to worry about the purported big hill at mile 3.5. On Sachuest Point Road now, I could see the three leaders coming back now in a pack, with Matthew in 4th being chased by Keven O'Neill and another BAA runner. After the turn-around, I passed about three more runners in this stretch. 5:59
Mile 4: The Hill. We had about another 1/2 mile of flat, and then it began. 90' climb over 1/2 mile. I was fearful of being overtaken by the guys I had just passed, but I was pleasantly surprised that I held my own here. In retrospect, I think I psyched myself out here, and found the hill to be more long than steep. 6:26
Mile 5: Downhill for 1/2 mile, then flat to the finish. Downhill running is my forte, and I passed at least five runners on the descent. Tried to use the momentum to carry me to the finish. When I saw the clock ticking away high 29:40s, I knew that sub-30 was not a possibility, but I hadn't really even considered either. Final mile: 5:39
|Headed for the finish line.|
Pic by Jana
Final results: 30:08. 16th place out of 926. 2nd in age group. Full results here.
|With my age group winnings:|
A pumpkin pie and a blanket
I run competitively, but it's mostly about the fun of the race. Having said that, I was bummed that I missed sub-30 by 8 seconds and went into the usual thought of where I could have made up the 8 seconds. That became a fleeting thought as I was quite happy with my race overall, and had a good time. This was my 3rd fastest 5-miler ever, and it had a significant hill in the course. Matthew ripped a new PR of 26:41. Had time to take a shower in the nice facilities of the Newport County Y before our awards, and still had plenty of time to get home and make Thanksgiving dinner in Narragansett in time. Good, fun race. Exceeded my expectations.