Oops! It’s Wednesday and I’ve forgotten to write a blog entry about this race until now. I’ll keep it short on words and a little heavier on photos since I was wearing my video glasses for the race.
In 2010 this was the smallest sanctioned race in South Carolina, with 15 runners in the full marathon and 5 in the half marathon. Thanks to the hard work of the race director, it has grown steadily since then and this year there were almost 300 finishers — 191 in the half and 94 in the full.
If you like hills, you’ll love this race. I don’t really like hills at all, but I seem to do generally okay on them. I don’t mind walking some, especially when I’m trying to run up a hill and I feel like I can probably walk it about as fast as I can run it. In this race I walked five different times. They’re short walks — maybe 30 seconds to a minute — and probably didn’t hurt my time a lot. I finished 9th overall and won 3rd Masters. That bumped me up out of the 60-64 age group, where I would have one by a long shot, and somebody asked me if it made me mad that I was 3rd Masters instead of 1st in the age group. I’ll take Masters any day, so I was happy with it. For me there are very few chances to get a Masters award.so it’s exciting to be able to get one occasionally.
As I’ve been doing lately, I’ll post a video I did of the race below then some of the race photos.
Here’s the video…
Quite a few of the Gaston County Runners were at the race. This isn’t all of them but it’s the most I could find in any one picture.
The biggest laugh of the day was when Gene Summey was doing something with his iPhone and asked me what kind of phone I had. He did a great spontaneous spit take when I said I had a Jitterbug. Completely lost his chewing gum. I guess I’m just kind of old school.
No doubt the highlight of the race was when the race director, Jefferson Nicholson, surprised his girlfriend by proposing to her in front of the crowd as the race was about to begin. What a great moment, and I couldn’t believe I was standing right up front where I was able to catch it on my video glasses.
The course was out-and-back, which I always enjoy since you meet up with everybody else in the race along the way either coming or going. This is my running buddy and GCR member Chris Baucom.
One of the great things about out-and-back is that many times people let you know how you’re doing. Here I think she’s saying I’m in 6th place. I think I was actually in 7th place and I ultimately ended up 9th overall.
There were almost 200 finishers in the half marathon, but when you spread them out over 13 miles it can get kind of lonely out there. Here at the 12-mile point you can see how far I am behind the runner in front of me, and Chris Baucom was about this far in back of me, so I spent quite a bit of time running alone.
Some nincompoop decided to park his car about 50 feet from the start/finish line before the race and didn’t move it during the entire race so runners had the pleasure of dodging it at the start of the race and also as they finished. Some people.
The course was loaded with hills, and also about 4 miles of gravel road, so I surprised myself by finishing in 1:39:39, which was 9th overall.
Matt Jaskot of Charlotte was the overall winner of the half marathon.