Saturday, June 14, 2008

USCAA Reginal Track and Field Championship - 2008

Rice University - Corporate Competition - 3rd time I've participated on the Shell team - 2nd time in this event (other time was Nationals in San Diego last July) - last year our team finished 2nd edged out just slightly by Exxon so we were out to do better.

The Team - Pre-Race:

My event was the 1 mile open - I traded to be on this team instead of a 3k run earlier - I really wanted to run a mile race so I was able to trade with another teammate and he ran the 3k. Last year there were several sub5 mpm runners so I was expecting some good competition. Goal Sub5 mpm. Scoring for the team event was top two team places are added together and lowest team score wins. Start Temp 87°F w/ 73°F Dew Point.

Take off - I'm feeling pretty relaxed around the first turn in 2nd place with my teammate just behind me. On the 2nd turn it seemed natural to go ahead of 1st place so I went ahead and took over the lead thinking someone behind me was sandbagging and was going to blow by me any second - finish the first lap at 74 sec.

Second lap just keeping it steady - wondering why I'm in front and hearing someone right behind me that I figure out from the cheers of spectating teammates is my teammate - cool 1st and 2nd. Finish 2nd lap at 75 sec. Note the Tiger Shirt - Exxon - sitting behind us two:

Third lap continuing the pace - seems I'm creating some separation - finish the lap at 74 sec.

Forth lap still feeling plenty of gas so decide to pour in whatever I had left to the last lap even though I had the win pretty locked up - I wanted a good time - finished the lap 70 sec.

Total 4:53 - first place - teamate got 4th so team score was 1+4=5 which takes the race - Shell Wins. A new PR for my mile (not counting High School) and the highest VDOT race I've done since Houston Marathon at 61.0.

Later I did an 800m relay - first leg. Temp up to 91°F. I was motivated to finish quickly as there was announced right as I lined up that a car was going to be towed and it kinda sounded like my car. Rather than bailing on the race - I ran the race - I had a pretty good lead after 2 laps pretty much from the start with splits of 66/69 for a total 2:15 then handed off the baton and jogged over to my car. I hear later our last 2 legs brought it home for the win. Another PR for my 800m and an even higher VDOT than Houston Marathon - a new VDOT PR albeit at a very short distance.

They didn't tow my car but as it turned out I had to call AAA myself instead of them as my keys were locked inside :-(. After a 1/2 hour or so I get my keys just after awards.

For awards - I get 2 gold medals for our team wins on the two events I was in. Even better SHELL takes home the victors cup with a pretty definitive score lead over 2nd place EXXON. All is good.

While I'm messing with the car I miss the finishing photo:

A good time overall and getting within 25 seconds of my HS mile and 9 seconds from my HS 1/2 mile PR is pretty cool. But these short races hold nothing fullfilling in comparison to a REAL race distance - true of all distances less than 26.2 miles :o).

Thanks for Reading.

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