Today was the second running of the Gran Carrera Autotal ’07. It is hosted by one of the large Nissan dealerships here in town. They even raffled off a car! They are celebrating their 25th anniversary. There were 2 divisions. One was a 10K race, which I ran and the other was a 5K walk.
Concerned that I would over sleep, I woke up several times in the night to check my watch. I use an alarm to wake up about 8 or 10 times a year and am always concerned that I won’t hear it. I did not have any problem hearing it this morning and was up at 5:45. I arrived at 6:40 for a 7:00 start. That was plenty of time to get oriented and warmed up.
The weather was GREAT! Probably the best race conditions I have ever run in. The temperature was 75 degrees the whole race (last year we finished at 82 degrees). There was a drizzly rain 15 minutes before the race start and about 15 minutes into the race. The road was wet, but did not have too many puddles to wade through.
I don’t know yet how many participants were at the race, but they were expecting 1200. I would guess they got close to that number, though there were quite a few shirts left over.
When I ran this race last year I remember it being the first race I had ever run with kilometer markers. But, last year they were all wrong. Splits ranged from 4:18 to 6:44 per kilometer. I know I can hold my pace better than that. This year was no different. My splits were between 3:33 and 6:12…on consecutive kilometers! They really need help laying out their markers. It was supposed to be a 10K race, but measured 9.1 according to Google Earth.
Trying to keep any sense of pace and using the kilometer splits to help me know how I was doing overall was a waste of time. I crossed the half way point at 26:36 and finished at 52:48 (a second half time of 26:12). That gave me a slight negative split. A pace of 9:20 per mile.
I did much better overall compared to last year. Total time then was 1:00:54, for an 8:06 faster finish this year. Last year’s pace was 10:46 per mile which put me at 1:26 per mile faster this year.
Since the race started an hour earlier this year and my church service started an hour later than last year, I had 2 more hours to stick around for the awards ceremony and raffle. I was looking forward to it. I found my former landlord and hung with her for a while. We have not seen each other in quite some time (we only get together at races these days) and had plenty to catch up on. She ended up having to leave before the festivities began. I stuck around a while longer and then found out that the raffle was not supposed to start for 2 more hours! I left. You have to be present to win any of the prizes and they made the raffle 3 hours after the end of the race. Ridiculous.
As I was leaving I walked by the table where they were giving out the food and T-Shirts after the race. Since they had extra shirts they were just giving them away. I snagged one for a friend who did the walk, but had not registered for the event. This is the first race I have been to which did not allow “morning of” registrations.
I am very pleased with the way everything turned out, other than I did not get to play in the raffle. I was very happy with my time. Conditions were much better this year than last, but it is at least a tangible marker that I am improving on my running.