Temp 49 (44) Wind 12 mph.
Birthday Race. Turned 53.
Decided a couple hours before the race to go ahead and wear the A4s. Was wanting the extra sole on the A6s, but started to get spooked about the longer toe box and did not want to catch a pothole or large crack.
Moved the starting line back? Course was spot on before, so will be a tad long. Lot of people here. RD says record turnout. Late getting to the line and all front row spots taken. See Jarod H. and some lanky kid that's maybe 14-15. Figure they are best bets to start fast, so jump behind them with Gary C. who I know will not step on my heel.
End up having to jump around Jarod, but kid is true to form. Running side-by-side out front. Uneven cobble stone street is pounding my legs and actually feel my shoes getting loose. We get about 3/4s into first mile and I ask him if he has raced a 10K before. "No." How about a 5K? "Nope". What's the furthest you've raced? "One mile." First 3.2 of this course is almost all uphill and this morning we will be running it with the wind in our faces. Suggest he relax until he gets to the water tower (3.2 miles) before easing on ahead. First two mile spits 6:28 and 6:23. Have Garmin set to alert every 5:00 minutes and checked it a first alert. Was at 6:28, so was good to go.
Third mile is most difficult with three significant climbs; the last and highest one about 800 meters long. Did not know my second mile split, but felt faster than first. In a good spot and did not think anyone chasing was too close. Went into relax and manage mode to set up strong finish. Felt the second incline some, the third one more so. Third mile split = 6:29.
Last climb ended at 3.25 mile mark. Long flat stretch, then a decline before the next incline. Relaxed and road the tailwind on the flat and gravity on the decline. No issues whatsoever on the incline. Back on to Barron Road in real good shape. Two miles and change to go. Few small rollers with a net decline and no wind to fight. Can push the declines harder now with no penalty to pay. Mentally prepare to deal with cobble stones again. Mile splits for four and five are 6:21 and 6:14. Picking up steam.
Pass mile five road sign and go into finish mode. Get back on the cobble stones and really feel my left shoe wobbling. Double knots and tucked the ends. Still come apart and its untied midway though mile six. Sidewalk is not an option, so resort to scooting over and running on a thin section of concrete gutter when possible. Mile six split = 6:10. Time to stride it in, not trip, and keep my shoe on. Extra distance ends up being 0.06. Finish with a 1:31 (5:53) for last 0.26 and cross with a clock time of 39:36. First place overall. Look back and see...no one.
Splits: 6:28 / 6:23 / 6:29 / 6:21 / 6:14 / 6:10 / 1:31 (5:53). Overall Win. Have ran faster, but maybe never better tactically on a course. Great morning. Three 10Ks in last three years. Three overall wins. Can't beat that.