Race Review: Victory 5k

Another great morning dawned on Labor Day for the Victory 10k/5k in north Minneapolis.  The Victory races bring in a great crowd of competitors due to its flat and fast course.  It is held annually on Victory Memorial Parkway.

The morning began fairly cool in the mid-50’s with humidity.  I arrived early to watch the 10k race start and cheered on my teammates and friends.  They all had good races on the out and back course. The temperature began to warm-up during our warm-up, largely due to the lack of shade along the 5k course.

The 5k race started at 9:30am and the temps were in the mid-60’s and humid. Asnoted the course is pretty much flat with only mild elevation changes.  We headed west on the parkway from Webber Park.  I went out at what felt like a slightly uncomfortable pace (which turned out to be 6:11 pace) and tried to stay with a group of runners, which at the time included Kirt Goetzke (who ran the doubled and still smoked me).   The mile marker was right on and I came through in 6:20.

John finishing the 10k.

We continued on the parkway now in the full sun and passing the WWII markers and trees, though the trees provided pretty much no shade.  The turn around point was a large monmument in the middle of a traffic circle.  It was cool to run around the circle instead of just making a U-turn.  And then back we went.  A MDRA woman runner that I’d never met name, Kate passed me which started a battle of passing each other back and forth (we did meet after the race and I beat her, by 10 seconds).  This helped me fight through the pain and tiredness of my legs.  I remember seeing the clock say 13 minutes at the 2 mile, but I actually came through the second mile in 6:51 which put me at 13:11.

The final mile continued to be a struggle of mind over exhausted legs and struggling lungs.  I don’t have to remind you my faithful readers that I haven’t done much speed work and definitely haven’t been under 7 minute pace since this spring.  It helped having people trying to pass me and having people cheering.  There weren’t a lot of people out on the course but within the first and last half mile there was a number of people that grew larger and louder as we approached the finish line.  I didn’t see a 3 mile mark, but I did see the 6 mile mark and about that point you could see the finish line. I started picking it up and ran a 7:25 last 1.1 miles which is 6:42 pace. For a finish time of 20:36 good enough for 49th overall and 3rd in my 5 year age group.

The race was followed by free hot dogs, chips, and lemonade from the Lions Club and neighborhood information from the Folwell Neighborhood Association and the Webber-Camden Neighborhood.  So thanks for a great post-race meal.

It was a beautiful morning in a beautiful part of town that I’ve never really been to before.  I won’t make too many bold pronouncements like Nathan, but this will be a race that I try to keep on my calendar.

[tags] race review, Victory 5k, 5k, 10k [/tags]

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