Tony O’Carter sends this report from Ireland.
Having moved to Dublin to start a new job just recently, one of the first things I did was to find an athletics club. I eventually decided to try out Crusaders AC after looking on the internet for clubs. Going down on the Tuesday for a track session, one of the coaches mentioned the St. Patrick’s 5km race as one if their races that they recommend for the month, and although I wasn’t too sure of entering it at first, I decided that I’ll give it a shot since everyone was saying that it was a fast course where many of them got their PBs last year and my last two 5kms were some of the fastest I’ve ran.
The race took place near St Stephens Green with the race starting at Mansion House, the residence of the Lord Mayor of Dublin, taking place around the area on closed roads. I met up with some of the Crusaders before the race then went off to do a steady warm-up, while thinking how to approach the race knowing it was going to be quick. I thought the best thing to do was to go off at a hard but steady pace. While warming up I also saw plenty of “TBH” around, which turned out to be a local club with the same design.
The race started at 12pm and it was fast from the start with a line of runners starting to form barely half way into the first kilometre as I found myself in a group of around 8 runners including the eventual 1st place woman who ran 16.03. The first mile was done in 5.02 as I found myself near to the front of the group. It felt as if I was beginning to fade through the 3km point, but thought to keep going with the group as the second mile was done in 5.09. Coming into the final mile, I felt better but knew I wouldn’t be able to take anyone in a sprint so I pushed up to the front and kept going through with only one person able to come past me, doing 5.04 for the final mile. Going into the last straight I knew I could get sub 16 but just missed out by one second. The results showed I got 16.01 going from the gun and 16 exactly by the chip.
After the race, I joined some of the “Cru” in some post race Guinness to mark a good race and the festivities, which no doubt initiated myself in joining the club.
This is likely to be the last race that I wear the TBH vest while being over in the Emerald Isle in lieu of the white, red-lettered Crusaders’ vest, but I will still be wearing the black TBH shorts for races (to keep good standard up of course ) and of course keeping up to date with all TBH developments.