On 29 July 1981, there was a public holiday in England to mark the wedding day of Prince Charles and Diana, Princess of Wales. A running race was organised by the London Road Runners Club in Bushy Park, West London. Since this date, the race has been run every year on the last Friday in July, so this year’s race is the 27th. The running of the race is done by The Stragglers, and more information about the race can be found at the Stragglers website.
David….. as soon as I arrived home from work I got changed and headed straight out of the door to get to Bushy Park. We arrived in plenty of time for a decent warm-up and to get ready for the start. There were over 500 starters and the weather was cloudy and fairly ideal for running. It was a little breezy at times over the course but nothing really to worry about. The course is a mixture of tarmac paths, grass and firm mud.
Some say treat this distance like a 10k – otherwise you’ll burn out at 5k. Well, I took it like a 5k and just hung on, and it paid off. The first three KM’s were fun as I had some friends running close-by (Darren, Kieren, Suze and Marie) but once I’d shaken them off (just) I continued pushing hard and stayed strong to the finish. My overall time was 27:03 which I was really hapy with and I finished 46th out of 493 finishers.
For info my GPS recorded 7.22km and my approximate splits (based on my GPS and not the not-so-accurate markers on the course) were as follows: (1) 3:38, (2) 3:43, (3) 3:42, (4) 3:52, (5) 3:47, (6) 3:43, (7) 3:47, (7.22) 0:49. Here’s a link to a Google map showing the course (with the KM markers as per the course). My 5k time was 18:42, only a few seconds off of my best.
Sharon….. well, another happy face here in the Rowe household. I was really rather nervous about this race, I don’t know why – maybe because I couldn’t decide how to run it…would I run it like a 5km race or a 10km? I had a conversation with Nicola yesterday about pacing and thought I would aim for 6 min/km (of course, I had forgotten that it’s actually more than 7km) and try to do somewhere around 42 minutes. As it happened, my lovely shiny new Garmin told me that my average pace was 5:45 min/km and I also hit the 5km marker in 28:18!! I did worry at this point that I had gone off way too fast, but I managed to hang on and so the 7.2kms were completed in 41:35. I am chuffed to bits with this time and even better, I wasn’t the last Ranelagh to finish (I often am in the Road Grand Prix races!).
With one event left in the Ranelagh Road Grand Prix, I am currently 7th lady and David is 4th in the overall Open category (which is the only one he can be in until he hits 40 years old!).