The Great City Race 5k Online Ed Carys Matthews gives her verdict on the Great City Race
Race morning dawned warm and sunny with bright blue skies. Hopes were high. But, by the evening the weather – in true British tradition, had gone through four different seasons within the space of a couple of hours and was now overcast and chucking it down. So much for a summery jaunt around the city! Not that this seemed to dampen the lively atmosphere as I spotted several runners drinking a beer – before the run!
On the downside, the rain resulted in the 5,000 participating runners being drenched before they even left the starting pens, and made the course rather slippy in places. Wet drain covers, I discovered, can be particularly lethal – unless you enjoy doing the splits while running!
Huddling with the Men’s Running boys at the start there was some confusion as to whether the race was staggered by predicted race times, and if we were in the right area. Not that I think it would have mattered much, as this race was a serious free for all with runners hurdling bollards, drain covers, massive puddles and er other runners to get ahead! I narrowly missed being hit on the face by flying elbows several times! This is city running at its most competitive.
As this was my first race since rehabbing from an injury I decided not to belt it round just to get a PB – not that there was much choice as this was a seriously crowded race which involved a couple of frustrating stop-starts because of overcrowding.
This was a race for the nimble footed – I spent the whole 5K swerving, swearing and dodging other runners and street furniture. It was also perhaps not an ideal race for a beginner, or those who dislike running in a mob, as the pushy atmosphere could be rather off-putting for a first race.
That said, I had a great time and plan to return next year, but with the aim of trying to get a spot nearer the front. The sun might even be shining!