Another year and another Brass Monkey done. This fab race is a fast and furious half marathon, tracing a lollipop route of winding farm roads from York Racecourse and back. It's my PB course and a true test of any proper road runner's mettle.
After getting up at silly o'clock, our bellies pregnant with porridge, we sleepily bundled ourselves into the car. By 8am we were ready for a fine morning's running. Conditions were perfect, certain to be a PB outing and with the race mix tape on at a fine volume we gathered ourselves for the battle ahead; pacing plans fixed in our minds ready for some monkey business.
It was a weird thing to be running at less than full pelt. The plan to stick to 6'18'' pace is all well and good before you see your competitors stretching off into the distance, knowing you'd be leading if you were letting rip. It took a mile or two to get my head right and slip into the threshold groove. I eased off after 6'10'' for the first mile and was hovering between 6'17'' and 6'19'' very happily for the next ten miles. The pace felt relaxed and easy, made all the more so passing through the race field feeling strong and in control. By mile 11 shouts of 3rd lady caused me to wobble with the chance of chasing down 2nd. An internal battle ensued but I remained focused until mile 12 where I decided a fast final mile wouldn't hurt. I crossed the line in pretty much perfect pacing and with some confidence for my 20 miler next month.
Crossing the finish to find M had enjoyed a smashing run, a PB of 77.26 and a few more scalps to add to his collection was the icing and big shiny cherry on the cake. His run brought him first Vet 40 prize too and a fine return to road racing after a long gap.
One of the most enjoyable events of the year; this event is filled with friends and local club mates and a chance for a proper catch up after Xmas. A nice touch was the event video playing in the bar post race as we awaited the presentation (though I did look a bit post Xmas chunky). Numerous PBs followed for our finest local runners including running pal Richard B (AKA Tricky) in 78.04, Kevin O in 74.53 and Jane B of Ilkley in her first sub 90 min HM by a very comfortable margin. Well done to all for some superb runs today. I must also add a special hello to Erin P of New Marske (who also ran a PB by 3 mins!!) who very sweetly came and said hello after recognising me from the blog. Results here, race pics here.