I told you to stick around and here it is! My race recap for the Derby Day 5K!
I have to thank my running friend Sparky for this race. He was so totally pushing all of us to do this race and he guaranteed it would be a great time. And my goodness it SO was.
What made this race even better was that my Mom and Dad were out from the East Coast visiting for the Easter holiday. I was so excited that they would get to watch me race! It was another early early morning but we were all so excited. The Derby Day 5K takes place at the Santa Anita Race Track which is a big horse race track about 30 minutes outside of LA. There was a big Kentucky Derby qualifying race happening that afternoon so this was a big day of races of all sorts. Race entry for the runners got us entry into the grand stand for the rest of the day.
It was about 6:30am and we were off on the highway towards Santa Anita. We arrived at the track and saw that they had a set of gates pulled out in front of the starting line. We were going to start the 5k through the gates! I didn’t really look into the course on this race so it was going to be one big surprise. The trumpeter played his race tune (see here for an example:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s_2QdFrcTFU) and we were out the gates!
Mile 1- I proudly placed myself in the 8:30 pace group for the start because I wanted a strong start. I was ready to race this 5k and I knew I had gotten a lot faster since the Turkey Trot back in November. The first mile was pretty bland… we raced out of the gates and were out of the parking lot an up the road. Legs were moving good here!
Mile 2- The Arboretum! THIS is where the course gets an A+. The arboretum was this beautiful path with plants everywhere, no cars and amazing flowers. There even was an area where there were peacocks roaming freely. PEACOCKS! It was insane how beautiful it all was. Even though most of this mile was a steady uphill, I loved it.
Mile 3- On our way out of the arboretum, we entered back into the park. This time, we were actually in the infield. We ran through this tunnel on the way towards the track and this is where I really started to get tired. I was thankful for the water stations here… The last quarter mile we were on the race track! My legs got a bit of a shock when I hit this because it was like running on sand. I suddenly felt a lot slower but this is where I saw my Mom and Dad and I was ready to motor through to the finish. Rocky had also already finished at this point and he stuck with our tradition and ran me in at the last few hundred meters. I love our tradition!
Final 5K- 28:44 (A NEW PR!)
WOO HOO! Only getting faster from here!