Bucks 10,000m Champs

By Elliot Hind

After what seemed like an eternity out injured with a nasty ankle ligament tear (forcing my football retirement) I spent the summer targeting my 5k time.  Specifically working hard on leg speed and weight loss I made real progress; going from 19.04 on the flat Aylesbury parkrun on 23 May to breaking 17 minutes four times at the end of summer (fastest 16.37 at Leicester Braunstone parkrun on 5 September).

I had a really good week at the Tour of MK finishing 4th and was feeling good.  I wanted to have one final running aim before getting married on 26 September and spotted the Bucks 10k track championships in Aylesbury on 23 September.  I changed my training slightly to do slightly longer reps and felt about as ready as I could be.

I knew a few people who were going to be running, but had no idea about what the general standard of the race would be.  There were a few friendly faces at the start (including LBAC’s Chris Norman who entered the mile event too, but bottled it) and after 3 laps it became clear that I knew each of my competitors very well indeed as my training partners at Marshall MKAC Tom, Jonathan and Jamie joined me at the front.

I was determined to pace the race better than recent races of a similar distance and set my dad up with a time to aim for after each lap; he was a great help (at the beginning) keeping our group updated on how we were doing so I didn’t have to work it out myself!

All was going well for the half and we crossed halfway at 17.04; I think we were all hoping to have been there at about 16.45; but it was a very windy evening which didn’t help.  It was about about 15 laps that I started wishing it was over, which is a dangerous mentality to have!  I slipped back from the front two Jonathan and Tom and I seemed to lose about a second per lap from where I wanted to be, impossible to make up on tired legs.

Jonathan was looking strong, but Tom started to struggle.  He’s an excellent runner and someone I really enjoy training and racing, but have yet to beat.  I dug in and with about 5 laps to go overtook him and tried to put some distance between us.  Unfortunately for me with about 3 laps to go he put his turbo booster on and pushed back past me.

Knowing I was nowhere near my 34 minute target (my dad helpfully kept reminding me every lap as I’d asked him to!) I wanted to finish strongly and get as close to 34.30 as possible.  In the end I just missed it finishing third in 34.35; but it was a big PB of just less than 90 seconds  so I couldn’t be anything but delighted.  Congratulations to Jonathan Peters who won in 34.14 and Tom Comerford who came 2nd in 34.21.

Chris Norman ran a brilliant 35.57 for 6th which I believe is a PB for him and it definitely helped in his preparation for his fantastic 2.49 marathon PB in Frankfurt last week.

Despite running for LBAC I now live in Milton Keynes so qualified for the championships so took home a bronze medal; I can’t remember the last time I actually won a medal so wore it proudly for the rest of the evening.

Thanks to my support team of my now wife Sarah (who was disappointed not to have brought her kit as only one senior woman completed the race) and dad Andrew.