Bay Run 2009
I’ve been looking forward to this race for a year now. I was supposed to run it last year with three guys from work, but a surprise business trip to L.A. made me miss it. No way was I going to miss out this time. So Stef, Tim, Shane, and I signed up early and gave ourselves a silly name: “Barry and the Apples.” The race is 7km (about 4.5mi) around Iron Cove, and it’s been getting more popular every year. They have separate events for runners, walkers, kids, and even dogs. Race Day dawned beautiful and clear and sunny, and Snookums came along for moral support. The guys took off first, and then the girls left 15 minutes later. I was apprehensive. I told the Snook that in an ideal scenario, I’d average 7:00/km and finish in less than 50 minutes… but realistically I figured I’d do closer to 55. I started out slow. The first half of the race had the only hills, as we climbed up to Iron Cove Bridge and ran along Victoria Road. Once we got back to the water’s edge and the course flattened, I deliberately started to push myself. I’d lost Stef in the initial crush, but at the halfway point I spotted her 100m ahead. I tried my best to catch her, but she was setting a good pace. Soon the first of the dog runners was passing us. I skipped the sole water stop. Lots of people were taking walk breaks, but I told myself that at the very least I’d meet my secondary goal of running the whole thing without stopping. At the 6km sign, RunKeeper told me that 40min had elapsed. I suddenly realised that I was going to do it. Even if I had to walk that last kilometer, I knew I could do it in ten minutes. My back was starting to hurt bad at this point, and I had a stitch in my side. But I kept going. I could still see Stef, tantalizingly close. I pushed. Suddenly the finish line was looming and then we were done. I barely had time to hit Stop on RunKeeper and notice that my time was under 49min before a nice woman was hauling me out of the crowd to remove my timing chip. I turned around to see the Snook taking my picture. “I did it!” Turns out we all did it. My final time was 48:38; Stef finished about a minute ahead of me; and the boys were each more than ten minutes ahead of that. We posed for one last group shot and then headed off for breakfasts and showers.
Of course, the really funny bit is that I just logged on to check the results… and there’s “Barry and the Apples” as the #1 Team in the competition! I nearly fell over laughing. If you look at the results spreadsheet it’s clear that they’ve mistakenly given our team name to the actual winners. But still, now, for the moment, Barry and the Apples are the big winners of the Bay Run 2009.