MK Winter Half 2015 – PBs and Prizes!
MK Winter Half 2015
By Sam Dear
I’d been checking the weather every day before the run, hoping and praying that:
1. The recent strong winds would have disappeared
2. It would be dry
3. It wouldn’t be freezing.
While the winds had almost entirely completely gone, it most certainly was not dry, but
conditions were near perfect for me for the half marathon distance. A little chilly before the gun went off, but the misty drizzle (aka mizzle!) always helps keep you cool whilst not getting you completely soaked through.
I ran this race last year and I remembered that I was stood shivering on the start line whilst they delayed the race to allow people in the toilet queue to join us. Even though the race is chip timed so it doesn’t matter where you start they kept us waiting again for almost 10 minutes before finally letting us get going.
The first little loop is notoriously bottle-necky and this year was no different with over 1500 competing in the race, although this did give me the opportunity to hear a couple of ladies moaning about people splashing through the puddles on the packed path as they passed them. All before we had even reached 200m. After a few extra hard splashes as I passed them I darted in and out and made to keep pace with Warren for a while to work out how fast I wanted to go.
Everybody had been telling me I’d definitely get a PB, but genuinely in my own head I didn’t know how I was going to run the race. Having let Warren speed ahead I sat in with Graham and Tom May and continued along at a comfortable pace under my PB pace. Apart from a quick wave to Laura and Jo along the canal as I passed, myself, Graham and Tom were taking it in turns to lead before Tom decided he would push on. I could see David and Nick in the distance and knowing that David was going for sub 90 and told myself not to try to catch them too quickly but to just keep them in sight slowly reel them in. Suddenly Tom stopped and had to stretch his calf at the side of the path but on me and Graham went.
I was concentrating on David’s figure in the distance, but not feeling too bad myself (I even had a quick conversation about somebody who was quickly regretting the heavy rain jacket he was wearing!) As we approached Loughton my mind quickly thought back to Elliot who had been stood there last year and a wave of anger/jealousy over him being in yet another tropical island drove me on and I actually increased my speed before finally catching David and Nick having been watching their backs for the last 5 miles. Without realising it I was gradually picking people off and managing to keep my pace and I noticed that Warren was actually getting closer and closer to me. Last year on my quest for a PB and sub 90 half, Warren came by me between the 7th and 8th mile markers offering me words of encouragement and I was feeling like I was falling to pieces. This year though it was the other way around, although it was still Warren offering the words of encouragement and not me!
Knowing the course this year, I knew exactly how the hill at 10 miles was, so I took it slightly easy going into Tear Drops before battling it out for half a mile with a lady. Suddenly I’m being warned to run on the path (where else would I go?) and a lake appeared before me.
Deciding that the quicker I ran through these obstacles, the less wet I would get (is it true?) I stamped my way through and managed to pick up speed to try to warm my wet and cold legs back up. You can definitely tell which runners have done Cross Country before as they approach puddles like this and I was sure that those ladies I passed at the beginning would NOT be happy with this!
Up the hill and long the main road, I powered on still feeling remarkably comfortable and happy that the last 3 miles were all flat or downhill. On the long downhill after hills I saw an Elliot shaped figure running against the crowd before he shouted “Go on Sammy Boy!” and gave me a high 5.
Last year the bit I really suffered on was the last mile along the canal with every little incline causing me to utter obscenities. This year was different. I stuck with a guy who was running strongly and he helped pull me along. I believe my 13th mile may have even been one of my fastest. Charlie was stood taking the worst photos I’ve ever seen and shouting some much higher quality encouragement before I saw Jordan jogging back on his warm down. By then though it was a done deal… I sped up the final little slope, over took a few people as I flew down the other side and crossed the line in a big PB of 86:51, proving that all those people at the club who said I would get a PB actually know more than you think!
There were almost 30 of us out there on the course and there were a great many PBs and other excellent achievements. Most importantly congratulations to Jo and Ian for winning the Half Marathon Club Championship race and to Ian, Jordan and Richard for being 1st in the V40, U20 and V70 categories respectively.
All the other PBs etc are summarised below. Great stuff everybody!
|LBAC Pos.||Name||Chip Time Gender Pos.||Time||Note|
|1||Ian Grimshaw||5||01:15:48||1st V40 & PB|
|2||Jordan Clay||6||01:16:13||1st U20 & PB|
|11||Nick Clay||76||01:29:10||4th V50|
|24||Richard Inchley||442||01:51:35||1st V70|