Sunday, May 20, 2007

Cleveland "not a" 10K Race report.

I have a reoccurring nightmare where I am running effortlessly with my feet hovering off the ground and I'm passing all kinds of people, but the only problem is that I don't know where I am running. I am lost. I would always wake up from my dream race experience extremely agitated and frustrated. My dream or rather my nightmare came true today.
This morning at the Cleveland Rite Aid 10k, for some unknown reason, the lead vehicle led us astray. The runners all followed the vehicle the WRONG way and some were exchanging expletives unsure of what to do anyway. I figured if we are all being led down into the flats, then no big deal, we'll all run the same distance and get our respective times at the finish. I thought lets make the best of it and continue to the finish. The 2 mile marker was the last one we saw until we were directed back onto the original course at the five mile maker.
Between the 2 and 5 mile maker we had, no crowd support, no aid stations, and no police support. And we managed to run probably an additional 2 + miles. Sometime during the race the officials realized the error and made the correction and had the rest of the runners diverted back onto the correct course. But the damage was done and some of the runners were so mad that they didn't finish. My focus was to continue to run tough and stay with one of the lead Kenyan women (Leah Kiprono) who was running a sub 6 minute mile pace. But while I was chasing her, people driving in their cars were beeping and yelling at us to get off the road. They were probably wondering why this old white man was chasing a young pretty black girl. I wasn't going to hurt her. really. She was my inspiration to the finish. Her stride was poetry in motion. I thanked her and shook her hand at the finish for a run well done. I did manage to finish ahead of Leah by 17 seconds. I was happy.
I emailed the race director to let him know how upset I was and requested a refund. We'll see what they say.
If anyone ran the misdirected 10K run and was wearing a GPS and knows the correct distance please let me know. I think my next watch will be a Garmin 205. Anyone have one on sale?

15 comments:

Neese said...

what happened!?

E-Speed said...

Looks like the 10k didn't go as planned? Sorry I missed you out there today.

Kim said...

Where are the details? Did Blogger eat it?

Mallie said...

Yikes! I'd request a refund too. Why do folks in cars have to be such jerks? I had a few close calls myself this weekend. Congrats on running strong no matter the snafu.

The Salty One said...

Oh my! That just stinks!!! What is extra horrible about it is that women like Leah rely on getting prize money. They run these races for their living!! I hope she got it!!!

Anyway, despite the awfulness of the frankly idiotic race people it sounds like you had a really great experience running with Leah and protecting her from the rightfully confused Flats drivers.

Hopefully, you won't have that dream anymore!

E-Speed said...

okay now I read teh full report and saw the news on the forum. I'm so sorry you didn't get to race the race you came for. Way to be a classy runner though and finish out the race.

DaisyDuc said...

This was really disappointing to so many. I heard some were so mad they did not finish. It is really too bad in such a huge race, particularily with large prizes involved.

I give you a lot of credit for the attitude you carried to get through it and still run a fantastic race.

Eric said...

I managed to keep things in perspective as well and have a good tempo run. The link on my blog shows the route I ran which was an additional two miles exactly.

Is it because we are triathletes that we have a calmer demeanor and make lemonade out of lemons.

Deb said...

What a bummer!!! Hopefully they do the right thing and you'll get a nice little check in the mail.

Robert said...

I feel bad for you, but it's nice to know I'm not the only one this happens to. I'm 0-2. This happened to me in my first and only 5K and 10K races, albiet not as bad. I was just happy I didn't finish last in either one. I so feel for ya.

http://fitatforty.blogspot.com/2007/05/my-first-10k-race-report.html

Charlie said...

Very disappointing.
Your reaction was as positive as could be asked.
Congrats on the new PR, assuming that was your only 8.22 mile race.

Craig said...

Very memorable race. Lame how they botched it for all the 10K front runners. Good attitude you finished race. Why let situation ruin the day. I hope the Kenyan's still get there prize money.

TriSaraTops said...

You have a great attitude about the whole thing. How disappointing. I was on the marathon course working a water stop and didn't hear what happened until I talked to Eric later that day. Ugh.

Way to finish strong and I sincerely hope you get that refund!

Brian said...

I feel for you! You're one of the toughest cookies I know and I'm sure you took it in stride the best you could. How awesome to run with a Kenyan for any length of time!! I bet she was feeding off of you at the end. I'm glad you stuck around because seeing you late in the marathon gave me a huge boost!

GP said...

Wow: I'm sorry you had to be part of that catastrophe. Way to finish the race with grace, nevertheless. Please keep us posted on the response as it happens.