Ran the Kenny’s Open Urbanite Run last night. This was then 2nd time that the championship chip was used , the first being the Globe Run last month. While lots have been said about the benefits in using the chips during races (i.e. race analysis, accuracy in recording times), it’s quite unfortunate that should you lose the chip somewhere in the middle of the race, it would seem like you never existed at all🙂 This happened to me during the Globe Run. It’s a good thing though that I recorded my time using my stopwatch. This time, I made sure the chip was fastened securely. Truth be told, I was quite envious reading the analysis of my fellow runners. :)
Got to the race venue at around 6:30 pm at the usual starting place for races held at the Fort. I was the one who got the race packets of my teammates so I had to be there early. Even then, I could already see quite a number of the ‘early birds’ warming up for the first night race of its kind in our country. With Camsur looming on the horizon, I was debating within myself whether to really go hard this race or treat it as a training run. Considering the circumstances being a night race and all, I decided to compromise and just go for an “in-between” run. Run at a comfortable level just below threshold and with an effort above an ‘easy’ run. But then again, no run is ever ‘easy’ for a lug like me🙂
Marc Nelson fired off the starting gun at around 8:30pm by my watch and we were off. I waited for all the runners to go through the chute before finally running myself. There were A LOT of runners in this race – all excited to experience a night race I’m sure🙂 The race route is a familiar one except that it looked different at night🙂 It was the usual 15K Mizuno route that was used last year which means going into Heritage Park and, of course, McKinley Hill.
It was quite dark once we turned into Bayani Road and was even darker in certain areas around Heritage Park. Good thing I had company, otherwise, I would have been deathly scared running these portions of the race😉 Running at an even pace was a good decision since it enabled me to give an extra push once we got out of Heritage Park and ‘attack’ the hilly sections – well, at least what I consider an “attack”🙂
Attack = shuffling during hilly sections, instead of running/striding.
The 15K runners merged with the 10K runners somewhere along Bayani Road. There was more company once we got into McKinley Hill because of the 5K runners. It was such a great sight to witness a sea of runners occupying the whole stretch of McKinley Hill🙂 Again, lots of shuffling at this stage of the race until I got back to run at the Main Road and made a final burst towards the finish. Unofficial time of 1:20:20 by my watch. Lined up for hydration and loot bag afterwards🙂
But the real story about this run was the festive atmosphere and vibe which I felt throughout the race. There were people lounging around picnic-style around the grounds partaking either the urbanite meal or getting free shots from “The Bar”. (I myself downed 2 shots to celebrate Monica’s 2nd place finish)🙂 It was about people coming together sharing a passion and having a good time afterwards. It was a really good night all around🙂
P.S. Yes, it was a good night even though the registration/pick-up procedure can stand further improvement. I won’t comment on the process since much of what can be said has already been said. I just hope that whatever negative experience some of us may have had last week were washed away with our run last night🙂 Just chalk it up as part of the birthing pains in trying to bring a “world-class” race to our shores🙂 Is it world-class right now? Of course not. But I’d like to think we’re moving in the right direction. And if only for daring to push the envelope and raise the bar in races held in these parts, I am holding up a bottle and saying “Cheers!” to Coach Rio and Vince.