Where we live seems to be the heart of parkrun (maybe because it started here and the empire that is parkrun is based in the area). In addition to Bedfont, Richmond, Bushy and Kingston parkruns we now have a new kid on the block – Old Deer Park in Richmond.
Last Saturday was the first event so I popped along with a few others to give it a go. The course is entirely on grass so I wanted to at least get a run in whilst the ground was dry and firm. I’m not sure I’d want to run this course in the middle of winter.
60 of us lined up at the start for this three lap course. I’d no plans to race particularly hard as my right calf is pretty tight at the moment (and has been probably since the Wedding Day race a few weeks ago) so wanted to get in just a solid run.
Early on the first lap a few of us got a little confused and ran a little off track (as there was a large group of other people exercising pretty close to the racing line) and when one person runs around them you all seem to follow… Adjustments were made and I was sat in about fifth place. As I started the third lap I moved into third place and maintained this position till the end, finishing in 19:44.
I don’t think the course is particularly fast, partly because of the grass surface and also the 6 (yes, 6) 90 degree turns you made on each (yes, each) of the three laps. Its a lot of stop/start/stop/start on this course – maybe it could be used for some great fartlek training.