Saturday, May 05, 2007

Happy hurdles

It was another fun day at the track up in sunny Hereford. We finished in fourth place but only six points from third. There was some good, some bad and some just plain ugly but most importantly we all had a great afternoon. The highlight was probably our double second place in relays - and well done to John, Simon and Bruno - all first timers doing a great job for the team in the 4x100 amongst other events. Other performances I have to mention are those from Nick (PB in the 1500 and first place), Patrick W (fellow fell runner), John A (long jump and triple jump maestro), Harry (all round nice guy), Bill (field supremo), Rick (da Boss and all round top bloke), Jerry (distance guru) and Dave 'the boy' Taylor.

So how did I do? Pretty well even if I say so myself. I was really pleased with my 400 hurdles. OK, so it wasn't the fastest ever, taking a yawn causing, 75s but that was quicker than the 80s I was expecting. But what a race. I was drawn in lane five and within 100m the three guys inside me had gone past. I kept to the game plan of going out steady and by two hundred there was a glimmer of hope as I managed to hold the gap to the guy inside me. I ran a storming bend to close the gap before plying on the power to overtake him in the home straight and take the bronze - nice. Ok, Ok, so I bigged it up a bit - well, quite a lot really. I can see myself getting a few seconds quicker once I have more confidence with my hurdling ability.

In my other events I set a new PB in the 2000m Steeple Chase, knocking about 20s off my previous to lower my time to 7:55, not sure of my position - I think I was fourth (just found out I was third) of six in the A string. I equalled my time in the 400m with 65.9 to come last (or as I like to say 4th - as there were two none runners so I still scored worthwhile points) and set a slow 5k time of 18:48 but the main thing was my race position of second in the B string - sadly Jerry lapped me in the home straight as he finished - now there was clearly no need for that! For me it was a tacticle race because I was knackered. I realised that first place in the B string was beyond me within 200m of the start, as the guy set off way quicker than I can run but for a few laps I ran on the shoulder of the second place man. I determined I could whoop him and then set off to make a nice big gap before some nice even paced laps to the finish to claim that second spot.

The Long Jump saw me set another PB, nudging my distance up to 4.41, breaking my previous best by 22cm. More importantly by breaking my PB I managed to gain an extra place, finishing second in the B string. The hammer was my only blot and I should have done better - I am distraught and nothing anybody can say can console me. I offered my resignation but they declined to accept it - oh well. And finally the Javelin was just about OK. I was within a metre of my best, with a final throw of 27 something, but I needed that final throw to edge out Rick in our personal battle of the 'not very good Javelin throwers'. And that was that. Seven events complete and some good placings and results. It would have been eight but because of my rubbish hammer throw I was dropped from the 4x400 relay team - to give me some time 'to reflect' - only joking - though I am mentally scarred by such a pants hammer throw.

Quote of the day: "Ordinarily he was insane, but he had lucid moments when he was merely stupid". - Heinrich Heine, Journalist, essayist and poet.