Saturday, September 10, 2011

city to surf 12k race report 2011

this is the biggest running event for perth and the third time for me.  42,000 people converge on the city to either do the full marathon, half marathon or the traditional 12k.  i was meant to do the half this year but my running was all over the place and i couldnt consistently follow the training programme.  so i switched to the 12k and thought i would just go out and enjoy it.  and take my camera.


The Esplanade - Foreshore

My camera does weird things.  The Bell Tower.

this has never happened in the history of the race but this year a 30 year old man suffered a heart attack at the finish line after completing the half marathon.  he died.  he was fit and active.  it really pays to go and get checked out for any unknown defects.  it turned out to be a really warm day.  that may not have helped when  people push themselves beyond what they may have trained for.  he wasnt the only one who required medical help.

for an event this size the organisation is pretty good.  however sometimes they do screw up.  last year the lead bike for the half marathon took them on the wrong course and the front runners had to double back.  this year the announcer stuffed up the wave starts.  they have four waves for the 12k.  priority and then 1,2, and 3.  this is then followed by the 12k walkers.  it is based on your expected finish time.  most people lie.  within wave 1,2, 3 and walkers they have sub-waves A and B.  so the announcer calls all people in wave A to make their way up to st georges terrace rather than 1 - A.  and just like sheep people followed.  i was in wave 2 - A and ended up having to run past walkers, ladies with prams and people who just should not have been there.  it was ridiculous. 

the first k is up st georges terrace and then past kings park.  this is the first of three hill sections.  people madly dash away at the start and you catch up as they run smack into the hill.


Looking back down St Georges Terrace

Heading up to the first hill at Kings Park.
once i got past the pram pushers i started having fun.  i was running easily and it felt great.  on friday i had suffered a really bad episode of gastro (i know - gross) and had struggled to eat anything since.  i was worried i wouldnt have the energy.  last year i crushed my previous time by 12 minutes and i was secretly hoping to come close to my PB which meant an average 5.30 pace. allowing for time off for taking photos i found myself running quite quickly.  after the first hill it is downhill from kings park before turning and heading for hay street.  at this turn there is a short cut behind a house and while it isnt a huge deal i cant believe people take it.  it is cheating - you are not on the official course.  this happens again at perry lakes.  around here i was running a 5 minute pace.  yikes.      


Looking down Hay St
 Hay st is a gradual downhill before becoming level.  this is a fun part as there are alot of spectators and the atmosphere is awesome.  but you know that as soon as this part comes to an end you are faced with heartbreak hill.  this is selby street and you can see it coming - the mass swarm of people crawling up it like ants.  i have never walked this hill and even waited till i got to the top to take a photo.  clean record.


Here comes Heartbreak Hill

 
 
There goes Heartbreak Hill.
 after this the course heads down to perry lakes.  last year they changed the course so the half marathon runners went the old way and the 12k runners headed through the park.  however it was very confusing  with people going both ways so this year they fenced it off really well and it worked.  but again people cut through the park instead of following the designated path.  cheaters !  this section is always really hot as you are tucked behind the hills and no breeze at all.  this is where i hit the wall at the 8-10k mark.  i just didnt want to run anymore and had this incredible urge to just stop and sit down.  as you come out of the park you are confronted with the three sisters.  a group of hills that dont look big but i find worse than heartbreak hill and for ages i thought this was heartbreak hill.it.  with the change of course the first hill hits you as soon as you come out of the park and it is now a longer section.  at this point everything caught up with me a  bit and i slowed the pace.  i kept reminding myself that as soon as i was done with these hills it was all downhill and i could unleash and i ran the last k in under 5 minutes. 

the finishers.
taking everything into account i went okay.  my official time was 1.09.31 while my garmin moving time (which does not include the time taken out for photo opportunities) was 1.07.48.  only a minute off my time from last year.  gotta be happy with that !




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