Ely New Year’s Eve 10k – Race Report

What is it about this race? I’ve now run it four times and despite achieving sub-40 minute 10k times pretty consistently elsewhere I still haven’t done it here. This year I crossed the finish line in 40 minutes and one second. How frustrating is that? Three training runs in the past six weeks probably goes some way to explaining the time; that or the two glasses of wine, a beer and that extra slice of cheesecake the night before.

Ely Runners put on a great 10k. Its main, and unique, attraction is the bottle of real ale you get for finishing it but it’s also a well-organised run around some rather nice flat countryside. It starts in Little Downham just outside Ely and you basically complete a squarish route back to the village. If the wind is up then it can be a tricky course given how ‘up’ the wind can get across the Fens. But this year was calm and cold. Very cold in fact. I went for the gloves and vest look but there were some runners who were covered head to toe. Of course I was freezing but I had hoped that would make me run quicker. Clearly it didn’t.

Chatting to a runner afterwards he tried to console me by saying that in some ways this race is too flat. Actually it does have a single incline at the 8km mark, hardly a hill but with a lone piper at the top of it creating the effect of it seeming more epic than it actually is.

The race finished with a sprint across a frozen field, not a quick enough sprint by me but the conditions did deliver some good results with the winner, Rob Joy of Notts AC, finishing well ahead of second place in 31:15. Congrats to everyone who braved the cold – and especially to those 49 runners who did get under 40 minutes.

Race result:
David Harte Bournville Harriers MV40 0:40:01 51st

(pic Charlie Barker – he’s captured my peculiar ‘thumbs-up’ look very nicely)

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