Alan ‘Pie Finder’ Wallace send us this report from The Robin Hood 10K (which is right on our doorstep and NOT, as I thought, in Nottingham – RK)
Robin Hood 10k
There was a big X in my diary on Monday telling me not to work as it was the night of the Robin Hood 10k in Jarrow. I did this race last year and at the time I hadn’t been able to break 50 minutes for a 10k. I had paced myself perfectly and was on for a new PB and the elusive sub50 but watched in horror as my Garmin ticked over 10k and subsequently over 50 minutes! The course is listed as an “approximate 10k” and is long.
So I had unfinished business with this race. I hopped onto my trusty bike and pedaled the 10+ miles down to the race, getting slightly lost on the way but making it with around 20 minutes to spare. I paid my £10 for entry on the night and had a bit of a chinwag with a few friends. I hadn’t heard about anyone else from the club planning to do the race but Micky Baker appeared by my side out of nowhere and told me he was here for his supper, all entrants can nip over to the Robin Hood pub and claim their Pie & Pea supper after the race.
We made our way over to the start and after a briefing from the race organisers we were off.
After playing 5-a-side for the first time in 6 months on Sunday I was full of aches and pains so I started near the back and the plan was just to take it easy and finish under 50 minutes to put last year’s disappointment to bed.
The race starts off on a footpath and soon follows a short incline before you are sent onto grass around a football field. After a few minutes of running I realised my legs felt ok and the aches had disappeared so I upped the pace a little and made the decision to run at my projected GNR pace. I had toyed with the idea of trying to track Micky but it didn’t take me long to realise that nothing much would get between him and his supper and he was soon out of view
Back onto the tarmac path we were directed down into a small dene, across a small bridge and back along towards the starting area. Once there though the course takes in a lap of the field. Once around that you are directed to the first incline again for another two laps of the course.
There was a lot of support around the course from the locals, kids were out in force looking for high fives and the marshals were friendly and encouraging.
I always seem to get myself into a sprint off with someone at the end of a race and it was no different here. I’d become aware of a few “go on, you can beat him” shouts encouraging a runner behind me so I rounded the corner and put the foot down for the final stretch, my legs responded pretty well (was it the beetroot?) and I grabbed a couple of places, stopped my watch and went into my usual bent over “I’m about to throw up” stance.
I wobbled over to the t-shirt table and collected my shirt which was designed by one of the ladies from the hosting club, Jarrow and Hebburn athletics club. I bumped into Micky, who finished in 43-17, and had a bit of a chat before he could no longer resist the lure of the Pie + Pea
Jumped on the bike, took a wrong turn and ended up taking my journey home to 11-5 miles
The Garmin showed 46-59 for a distance of 6.33 miles so, as last year, slightly long. I crossed the 10k point at 46-13 which is a minute and a half slower than my pb. Happy enough with that, enjoyed the race and I’ll be back again next year.