It has been some time since my last visit to the 10k race at Tholthorpe in North Yorkshire and it was busier than I had ever seen before which was probably due to there being around 350 entries. Weather wise it was quite good besides the slight breeze which from past experience can be a touch more gusty whilst out on the course. The course is reasonably fast if you attack it hard and get stuck in which is exactly what Darran Bilton the course record holder did when he ran round it in a time of 30 minutes 26 seconds. If for any reason that you are not giving it your all then your fast time can suddenly disappear right before your eyes.
The race got under way with two young lads leading the way, one from Scarbrough and the other from York Triathlon and with myself controlling any of my fast start ideas tucking in behind them. There was a good bunch of us ( size of the bunch wise and not a bunch of pals ) by the the time we passed through the first kilometre in around 3 minutes 15 seconds. There was around seven of us in the group and because we were running into a bit of a head wind nobody was that keen to give it their all working on the front, saying that though Jonathon Johnson Harrogate AC, Guy Bracken North Shields Poly and Dominic Dunn North York Moors AC were doing more than enough on the front. Myself I would of attacked and tried to thin the bunch down but seeing as I was struggling being tucked in behind them then there was no chance that I was going anywhere other than backwards when I could no longer hold the effort. We passed through two kilometres with myself feeling ok, three kilometres I was starting to get into my mind that if I can just hold on for another kilometre, 4 kilometres and I was still struggling to hang on and by 5 kilometres I had taken enough punishment and slipped off the back of the leading bunch, in around 17 minutes 20 seconds. It was not long after that when I came across another victim from the lead bunch in the shape of the young York Triathlon lad, I soon caught him up and was thinking of working with him to keep the gap to the lead group in sight but for some reason I ended up going straight past him and left him behind at the 6 kilometre marker. Damage limitation it was then for the last 4 kilometres I thought, that was until the young Scarbrough lad became detached from the front group and gave me a new incentive. I managed to increase my pace slightly and even managed to sprint up the hill at around 9 kilometres and the distance between didn't seem any different. Going down the hill on the side I was surprised to see the York Tiathlon lad come flying past me which I was unable to respond to, I did sort of blast up that last incline before the village though it was too little little to late as there was no chance of catching the Triathlon lad before the finishing line. 7th place it was then in 35 minutes 26 seconds. Which was just about what I had expected to run, I was a bit gutted though because during the race I felt I was on for a sub 35 minuter. Overall I must admit I felt much better than my last race and I'm now looking forward to phase 2 of my plan.
Jonny Johnson won the race in just over 34 minutes, Dominic Dunn North York Moors (doing our surname proud ) was second and Guy Bracken North Shields was 3rd.
Guy Bracken 3rd, I first came across Guy in 2014 at the Middlesbrough 5k when he pipped me to the finnishing line in 16 minutes. I then came across him at the British Masters 5k Championships in the same year, I was going better by then and thougiht to myself that I would beat that Bracken chap because for starters he was an age group above me. I finished in 15 minutes 52 seconds and you guessed it yeah he beat me on that occassion too. As I faded away as the year went on Guy went on to run 31 minutes 49 seconds for 10k which for a v50 is absolutely unbelieveable. Inspirational to say the least. He also has a couple of age group world records and in a few months time he moves up an age group so God help those v55 lot.
Phase 2 of my training plan.
Phase 2 was never in my plan it came about because the first part of my year failed. I never managed to run sub sixteen minutes for 5km by August which I thought I could do, so instead of continuing down that line I put an end to it and invented Phase 2 known to me as operation 16. Phase 1 might of failed but I did enjoy the challenge and I'm already back up to full keeness planning and plotting my way to that sub 16 for 5km before December.