Race 2 of the challenge and my 100th 5K. I leave Tacoma at 9:15, and take River Road to Puyallup. I have not driven here in a couple of years but I think it will take me right to the fairgrounds. Part of the challenge is getting to each of these sights, places I do not often go to, with potential road closures. The main street of Puyallup is lined with chairs, reserved places for parade watchers, but the road is open and I get to the Golden Gate at the fairgrounds at about 9:45. That gives me 90 minutes to scope out the area and try to keep loose. I also eat some fig newtons and drink gatorade.
Recognize other challenge runners milling about. There is George who is way faster than me and has been one of my CCM pacers. The Dog Lake shirt woman thinks she knows me and then I remember her. I ran some with Jemma a few years ago when she was running her first race, the Over the Narrows ten miler. We have some friends in common. She and her husband Jared are just a little faster than me and we will be close in all four races.
A little warmer but still nice for running. Bigger group of runners here including my first sighting of a "Mini Maniac" I run a little bit to stay loose and I feel OK, but not sure how fast I can go.
Start - Chip mat is on the road, we start and immediately turn left into the Fairgrounds. Wide, plenty of room to find my pace. Fun to run past the roller coaster and other attractions. Loop around the food court. No stiffness, I feel really good. I pull ahead of Jemma and Jared.
Mile 1 - 7:19 - That is great. A few back streets and then on to the parade route. Spectators!! Whole wide road open and fun. Couple of turns and a turn around. The out and backs are fun to see the same runners again. Same guy will win all four races.
Mile 2 - 7:29 for the second mile - Really doing well in this one. Almost run into a family who is crossing the parade route and stops halfway in the road. Really not that close a call, lets me catch a guy who was closer to running in to them. Having someone with me helps so much to go faster. Turn the couple of blocks back to the finish. I know that after the last turn it will be a short sprint to the end and my time looks great. Have to navigate around an oblivious couple crossing the road, but I do so and finish strong.
Finish - 2.98 on the GPS. I guess that makes up for the long Tacoma course. Even with the shorter course I am thrilled with my pace and time. 7:24/mile average pace. I am among the top finishers and beat some of the people who beat me in Tacoma.
For my 100th 5K I finished in 22:03 which matches my finish time from my first 5K back in 1996.
Unfortunately the computer system keeping track of times crashed during this race and all times from 18 minutes to 28 minutes were lost. Good thing I have my watch time for my own records. But not place info. And the challenge results will now be based on three races, with my fastest one not counting. I am having a fun day and although I love to look at the data, I won't let this bother me. Its off to Sumner.
22:03 (watch time)
no place results