If you're new to following my blog, or have not heard about our experience at last year's Drumstick Dash race, you'll want to read last year's race report first.
So with 5 VIP entries, I signed up Morgan, Molly and myself to compete and treated Chuck Alfrey and Jess Smith to the other two. Jess because she and her family hung out with us after the race last year to see us off okay including taking my kids to lunch while we waited on the police and loaning us $20 so we could get enough gas in the car to get home (remember we had no cash or credit cards, as EVERYTHING was stolen). And Chuck, because for Christmas last year, he gave the kids his old iPad to replace the one that got stolen, and he was such an inspiration to me this year during Ironman training. It's not nearly thanks enough, but it was a simple gesture that they both appreciated.
With VIP parking, we cruised right into the parking pass only lot at Broad Ripple Park, and walked less than one block to the HEATED VIP tent! 22 degrees this morning, and the heated tent was perfect for Molly, Emma and Carter to hang out in while we ran. VIP food included Einstein Bagels and breakfast sandwiches, fruit, granola bars, OJ, coffee and water. The mayor of Indianapolis and local media were the only recognizable faces, but many public safety officials (mostly firefighters) were heavily present. Quick stop to our own private port-a-pots and Chuck and I take our position with the "fast turkeys". Molly opted to sit out and gave her bib to Emma Tillman, who was an old friend from our days staffing with the Winchester band 16 years ago. Emma had come with Jess who walked the 2.5 mile with Morgan.
I was feeling good and ready to give it a go for a PR but with my loss of speed this year in trying to go farther in 2013 I wasn't overly confident that I could get it done. The good news is I had my secret weapon at my side in Chuck, and he was willing to stick with me and pull me along. Last year I was 39:53 with nearly perfect 8:30 pacing. I knew if we could hold it under 8:30 mile by mile we'd be in good shape. I'll spare you the details of the mile by mile because honestly all I did was keep my head up and focused on one mile at a time. Here is the mile by mile comparison over the 4.65 mile course from last year to this year...
A 23 second PR is a perfect way for me to wrap up the year!
We made our way back to the VIP tent (only thing missing was chocolate milk) and found the family enjoying themselves. Took some pics and shared some war stories. Morgan was able to finish her race with a 12:20 pace and now it was Emma and Carter's turn.
The Lil' Gobblers run, is literally a 20 yard dash for kids 10 and under. Every kid gets a medal and a small bag of candy. This is the highlight of the event for these kids, and the best part...it's COMPLETELY FREE!
I love this race, and I love this distance. It's just short enough that I can go FAST, but just long enough that you must use disciplined pacing to meet your goal. And with over 17,000 participants it is now the 3rd largest race in Indiana (Indy Mini, Race for the Cure), and 6th largest Thanksgiving day race in the country! The Wheeler Mission is a wonderful organization, and the race director went above and beyond to make sure we came back and had a great day!
So that wraps up racing for 2013, unless I opt in to something else last minute. I'll put together my2014 race plan soon while my waist line fights through the difficult "eating season" (Thanksgiving - New Years)! Stay healthy friends!