OK, so at the Belgrave 5k yesterday there was a handicap component as part of the race, with cash prizes thanks to the National Handicap Endurance Scheme. The handicap is explained thus: “The handicaps are based on a target time of 14:30 for men and 16:45 for women. Whatever time you run on the day, it will be adjusted by your allowance to give your handicap time. The number preceding your allowance on the entry list is your handicap rating (much like a golf handicap) and can be applied to all distances from 5k to 10 miles - different allowances for each distance of course”.
Anyway, my handicap was 12:49 seconds based on how I had run three races previously in the Surrey Road League this year. This meant that my actual time minus my handicap time (27:01 - 12:49) gave me a handicap time of 14:12 seconds for the 5k. Basically, this means I am better over short distances than long - which I knew already.
This afternoon I got a text from David to say that I had won the handicap (according to the provisional results)! It’s on the Belgrave 5k triandrun website and says, “The handicapper was caught a beauty by Sharon Rowe of Ranelagh: her previous outings in the Surrey Road League in 2007 had given her handicap ratings of 31 (Sutton 10k), 31 (Elmbridge 10k) and 38 (Dorking 10 miles) - here she ran the equivalent of a 25 rating to scoop first prize.”
So I won! I am delighted and can’t really believe it. I did think that after such a good run yesterday compared to my handicap I had a chance of a prize but to come first in a handicap in an open race is pretty darned exciting! I get £75 which has paid for all the races I have entered this year, so I guess I owe it to David.
It’s prudent at this point to mention that David came 12th in the men’s handicap (he was first Ranelagh man too) and of course HUGE congratulations to Graham who won the individual male Surrey Road League title for 2007 and to the Straggler men who won the male team title - in particular Mr Daniel Norman who ran a PB too. I am hoping some of this running ability will rub off on me by osmosis or something.