Salt Lake Track Club 15 K. 51:13, 3rd place.
Steve Ashbaker and I had a plan to go out at 5:30 pace and alternate leads every 2 minutes until the 10 K mark, then get into a race. We made it through the first 1 K in 3:19, then 5:23 for the mile, 6:40 at the 2 K, 10:04 at 3 K. It was my turn to lead. By that time only Alexander Thomas was ahead of us, and he was close enough to make it tempting to catch him. I picked it up a bit, and pulled up hoping that both of us could draft for while instead of trading leads. I also had secret hopes to sustain 5:20 pace for the whole race. Unfortunately Steve was not feeling that great, and the little surge dropped him. I tried to follow Alexander, but he picked up the pace shortly after I caught him and lost me for good. Additionally, it seems like my cardiovascular system was working better than my legs - a pick up to sub 5:20 pace even for a short while caused a cramp in the quads. This has happened before. Well, I'll have to figure out how to fix this. 2 miles in 10:44, 4 K in 13:23, 3 miles 16:19, 5 K 16:56.
Shortly before mile 4 I hear "good job, guys" from an aid station. That means there is somebody else catching me. I've heard this before, too, and at a very bad place - 0.75 miles away from the finish of the Ogden Marathon last year. Paul Peterson was the $250 that ran past me to take third. That was alright though and I suppose I deserved it - I've done nasty things to him before. I have been the $250 that went past him at mile 22, $1000 that ran away from the start after staying the night at his house, and $1000 that took off at the half-marathon mark. Paul is a great guy and we are good friends.
Has Steve regrouped after the surge? No it is Mike Kirk, and he is having a very good day. I try to go with him, and for a while it looks like I can handle it. 4 miles in 21:48, turnaround in 25:30, supposedly 5 miles in 27:09, supposedly 6 miles in 33:02, 10 K in 34:05. Mike has dropped me shortly after 5 miles, and is gradually pulling away. I try to hold my ground, but he is doing better. If only I could relax my quads a bit... 12 K in 40:59. I am trying to stay as close as possible to the 5:30 pace. 13 K in 44:24. Now try to get close to 5:20 for the last mile. 14 K in 47:52. I shift gears after mile 9 for the kick, and manage 3:21 for the last 1 K to finish in 51:13. 50:40 for Mike, 49:27 for Alexander Thomas. Steve finishes a disappointing 7th in 52:38. But I am sure he will soon have a much better race. This one was a fluke for him.
With the warm up, cooldown, and the "always on the run" miles, and the kids runs, total mileage for the day is 15.