Wednesday, 24 September 2014

The Rat Race, Milford, Auckland.

Race: Rate race Milford Haven, Auckland, New Zealand.
Distance: 5km
Race Results: here

A very odd thing happened at this race...

Gathering at the start.

As usual the organisers of this weekly Wednesday night 5k seemed interested that they had an international entrant. Before the race, as we stood on the start line, the organiser announced my presence and I received a round of applause. There was a shout from the crowd, another UK runner was present and he rightfully didn't want to be missed -  two English entrants to this very local of Auckland races an unusual occurrence indeed. 

I didn't know where I was going on this race, it was so local that all the other participants had run it many times. I tried to keep up with the leader but he was too fast and when he stole away through the streets of suburban Auckland I was had to follow my nose to find the way. I was aware that the other UK entrant wasn't far behind and it wasn't long before he overtook me. This was an out and back course and soon the race leader and eventual winner came back past us, reaching half way about 60 seconds before me and my English compatriot who by now was just ahead. 

Adam Swallow 3rd (Bourne UK) Marcus Robertson 1st (NZ) and Paul Rushworth 2nd (Grantham UK)

I carried at a good pace in third place but on entering the housing estate on the way back to the start finish line I noticed that my English compatriot had started to tire. Time to strike for home. I mustered a good pace through the narrow streets trying to remember my path and I was able to overtake for second place in a time of 19 minutes 33 seconds. After the race I found out the other English guy was Adam Swallow from Bourne, Lincolnshire, about 20 miles from Grantham where I was based in the UK. There we were at the other side of the world, he from Bourne Town Harriers and me from Grantham Running Club. It really is a small world. 

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