Thursday, June 11, 2009
Race Report: JP Morgan Corporate Challenge
Tonight approximately 70 (including myself) of my fellow co-workers participated in the JP Morgan Corporate Challenge. On the subway ride up a co-worker asked me if I was going to run at race pace or run easy. I replied that I was going to try race tonight but it will depend on the crowds. More on that in a minute......
Unlike other races in Central Park this one was chip timed. Most would consider it more of a fun run than a race. It's a time to hang out with co-workers outside of work and promote a healthy lifestyle. I wanted to try and run at race pace, so I headed over to the start pretty early to get as close to the front as I could. Being an experienced road racer, I always try to line up according to my pace. Except for this race. The further you are from the front the more frustrating you are going to get. I found a spot just in front of the 6 minute/mile sign. Anyone that reads this blog, knows that I can't run a 6 minute mile but I knew I could get away with it tonight. Most of the people around me probably have never run a road race in their lives. They were hanging out with fellow co-workers, prepping their Ipods, and talking about how they'll be happy if they finish in 30 minutes. I'm thinking to myself, "people, if you want to finish in 30 minutes, you shouldn't be up here. Move back!" A few people even had umbrellas. PEOPLE, THERE ARE NO UMBRELLAS IN ROAD RACING! After a few announcements, the horn went off.
This is where this event gets frustrating. Most of the first mile was spent bobbing and weaving around people who, again, never have run a race in their lives. They would shoot out like a banshee for the first half mile and would then start walking. A few times I was on the verge of yelling "Get out of my way slowpoke!" I thought better of it. Who am I to yell at someone for trying in his or her own way to complete a 3.5 mile road race. They should be in the back so that those who are faster can run at their race pace.
As for the race itself, I finished the 3.5 mile distance in 25:20 for a 7:05 pace. My splits were 7:25, 6:42, 7:09, and 4:02 (last .5). Every year I complain about this event and yet I'm back year after year. Like I said in the beginning of this post, it's nice to do something with co-workers outside of work. Congratulations to everyone on my team who participated tonight especially those who ran for the first time. I hope you stick with it!
Lastly, I want to give a shout out to my buddy MB who completed his first road race tonight in 42:20. Great work!