Weston Prom 5 - Feb 2011

So great to run as part of a team! Yes, a rare outing of the Sri Chinmoy AC Bristol team saw four of us all at the same race - quite unusual with me doing triathlon mostly and Abichal and Rasmivan concentrating on multidays / ultradistance. Still, Suswara was n good form and running well so he invited us all to join him for the monthly 5 on Weston Prom, a classic race I first did about twelve years ago when I remember running 31.25.

It felt chillier than the forecast temperature of 8 degrees when we met up at the bar on Weston sea front that serves as race HQ - it was only £4 to sign up on the night - a real bargain. Not sure how many runners were there, but it is usually over a hundred and sometimes much higher. The night was clear, no breeze to speak of, and moon and stars were shining down on us together with the bright lights of the pier and arcades. The tide was in, right up against the prom. We warmed up for around twenty minutes, I chose to keep my hat and glves on as it was around 5 degrees, then we massed at the start line to hear the announcement that international athlete Jo Pavey was in the race - she got massive applause, then we were off after a 3-2-1 countdown. The start was fast and I went off brisk as usual - after some time I heard a garmin beeping and the time on my watch was 6.09 so I guessed I was about the right pace. My last race had been a 5 miler in Cardiff in 31.01 so I was hoping to shave a second or two off that despite having hardly run at all for a month. Talk about optimism :)

Rasmivan glided past me in the second mile which took 6.06, but I realised I wouldn't be able to sustain it and at the second u-turn, which marks the half way mark, I had my time called at 15.32. I didn't expect negative splits, and it was no surprise that despite working hard all the way round I only managed 31.30. A really disappointing time but I felt great, having had a really enjoyable race in the clear night seafront air. Rasmivan was surprised by his 30.40 something and Suswara and Abichal like myself did not live up to our own expectations but all in all a great night for the team and we went home happy (partly thanks to great chips frm the chinese that warmed us up nicely). The same team is due to reprise the distance next month at Weston, and we've entered a 4 x 5 mile relay at Bitton too.

Jai Sri Chinmoy! Oh, the photo is of us cooling down after the race, which is why I have my jacket and rucksack on. Left to right: Garga Chamberlain, Abichal Watkins, Suswara Payne and Rasmivan Collinson. All over 40 but young at heart.

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