Race #141 – Soldiers Reunion 5k – Newton, NC – 08/20/11

This was my third year in a row to run the Soldiers Reunion 5k in Newton. It’s actually a pretty big 5k by small-town race standards, and it’s also one of the longest running races in the state. I’ve always thought of it as a pretty fast and flat race too, but after the race a couple of people mentioned to me that it’s not as fast as, for example, the hilly Waldensian Classic held a week earlier in Valdese, and their times were slower here by 30 seconds to a minute. After running two 5k’s last week with times of 20:20 and 20:29 I was hoping to get into “20-minutes flat” territory, but I didn’t quite make it, although my time of 20:43 was 1st in my age group and a minute and 5 seconds faster than last year’s memorable showdown between Steve Staley and me where we finished 1-2 in the age group, both at 21:48 and with me ahead only by a few hundredths of a second. Two years ago I ran this same race at 22:10, so I’m really happy with this year’s time of 20:43. It’s nice to feel like there might be a possibility for additional improvement ahead, especially since I’ll be entering the 60-64 age group in just a few months.

I’m currently on a 7-day work week so until that’s no longer the case I’ll probably be cutting the blog entries short. One other thing I should mention about this race though is that my wife Linda took a nose dive at about the halfway point of the race. Thankfully she’s not injured too badly — just a few abrasions, mostly to her knee and elbow, and it remains to be seen if there’s much bruising or possibly a knee problem that keeps her out of running for a while. It was the first fall either of us has taken in three years of racing and I’m hoping it’ll be the last one a for a long time to come.

Click Here for Race Results on Active.com

Click Here for 200+ Photos on Flickr Posted by the City of Newton

Race Rating:

3 – 1-10 Website (Information, results, registration, photo links, etc.)
9 – 1-10 Awards (Quality of medals, trophies, etc.) (1 to 10)
9 – 1-10 Awards Presentation (PA system, winning times, etc.) (1 to 10)
8 – 1-10 Food for Race Participants (1 to 10) (watermelon/cantaloupe/soft drinks, & more)
7 – 1-10 T-Shirts (1 to 10 with 5 being average)
4 – 4/6 Part of Race Series (Grand Prix, etc.) (6=Yes and 4=No)
5 – 0/5 Professional Photography (5=Yes and 0=No) (FREE on Flickr!)
6 – 4/6 Chip Timing (6=Yes and 4=No)
7 – 3/7 Certified Course (by USA Track & Field) (7=Yes and 3=No)
7 – 1-10 Course (1 to 10 with 5 being average)
8 – 1-10 Parking (1 to 10 with 5 being average)
7 – 1-10 Entertainment (1 to 10 with 5 being average)
10 – 0-10 Age Groups (10 if 5-year groups; 0 if 10-year groups)
5 – 0/5 Indoor Shelter from Elements (0 if none; 5 if provided)
5 – 1-10 Bathroom Facilities
0-10 Other

TOTAL – 100

Race Stats: 

1st Overall Male:  Dave Max (17:03)
1st Overall Female:  Savannah Fornshell (20:35)
Total Finishers:  287

My Stats:

Time:  20:43
Pace:  6:34
Age Group:  1 of  5
Overall:   32 of 287

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