Package pick-up in Bayside Park on White Rock Beach
Shuttle buses ready to take runners up to the start line
Charismatic race director
The race was scheduled to start at 9am, but at around 8:40 the race director announced that the start would be delayed by 10 minutes or so because one of the buses broke down. Lucky for us, since my Dad was about 25 minutes away!
Some much-needed dog love at the starting line
Getting focused and waiting for the whistle.
I was never able to find a course profile on the race website. The only thing I read about the race that stuck in my head was the long downhill stretch before the finish. So, I was a little bit surprised when about 400m into the run I found myself running up a big mother of a hill. As it turned out, there were many more moments like this throughout the race, each one as surprising as the last.
Shouting "Number One!" at my curb crew at around the halfway mark
This display of confidence was only for the benefit of my Dad and sister. By the 5K mark I knew my unrealistic goal of 50 minutes was out of reach, and so was a PR. Some of the hills were so big I had to take walk breaks.
Instead of hauling ass down the last hill to the finish line, I decided to coast and save some energy for a sprint finish. There wasn't anyone to see me run fast down the hill anyway.
Catching my breath and looking back at the clock, which read 55:19
My Mom, Tina, and me chowing down
My Mom was good enough to make the 45 minute drive from downtown Vancouver to come and cheer. She also brought me a bottle of red wine as a reward for finishing, which I decided to save for later.
My Dad & official photographer and me
Even though I was thoroughly disappointed with my time, it was still a pretty fun day. The course is quite scenic and finishing on a downhill at the beach is a huge bonus. It was a good excuse to get my Dad over to the mainland from Vancouver Island and we spent a nice afternoon together.
A little tip: Don't expect to set a PR at the Sandcastle Classic, unless you're a hill specialist.
Final Place: 150/ 296
Place in Sex: 54/149
Place in Division: 14/30
Official Gun Time: 55:20
This Week's Mileage:
Planned: 30 miles / 48.3 km
Actual: 27.72 miles / 44.6 km
(Excuses: Hot weather, poor air quality, and pre-race rest days)