Last night was the North Berwick Law race.
There seemed to be a very large turnout this year and the nice weather had also brought out a large number of spectators. Just before the start of the race though a bit of mist rolled in and the top of the law was briefly hidden, making it look even more imposing than usual.
Really good fun this race. Well, “fun” is a relative term I suppose and it is fun once it’s over.
Had what I thought was a really good start and took the first mile, to the foot of the law, quickly but comfortably and passed quite a few runners who had belted off too quickly and were paying for it already.
The climb up the law is punishing. Bend over, walk up and push down on the knees type climbing. The only comfort is that everyone is doing the same. You may lose a lot of time on the climb, but you shouldn’t lose too many places…
Unlike the descent. Oh lordy, once more the trademark Hay “big girl’s blouse type hippity hoppity” descent let me down badly, with runners queuing up behind me to get past!
Got back to the flat and felt good… for all of twenty yards or so, then I felt my calf muscles start to tighten! Lost count of the number of times I’ve had to stop on this race to stretch out cramp.
As luck would have it, Mr Rowland chose this very time to pass me! However, I didn’t stop and the “nearly-cramp” wore off and I passed him again on the road near the swimming pool.
Managed to get up a fair bit of speed coming back through the park and found myself in a group of three (me, a Norham runner and a bloke in a yellow vest) heading out of the park and onto Quality Street. The atmosphere when you come out of the park and back onto the road is amazing at this race. The roads are great.
A young girl was counting off the runners as we came out of the park and informed Yellow Vest that he was 19th, I was 20th and Norham was 21st. At which point Yellow turns round and says something along the lines of “you’re not getting 19th place”! Well…. “red rag to a bull” and all that. Me and Norham just cranked it up a bit and started to pull away until the three of us were in a sprint to the line, which ended up Norham 19th, me 20th and Yellow 21st (if only he kept quiet).
My watch clocked 23:13 which is 1 second slower than my last outing two years ago.
Went for a couple of drinks afterwards and then had a “weegie salad” for tea (chips). Perhaps not the ideal diet, woke up this morning and felt like I was going around with a lead weight in my belly.
Been infected, badly, today by an “earworm” - one of those bits of a song or a tune that get lodged in your brain. I’ve been listening to a hell of a lot of Roy Hargrove’s stuff lately and his album from 1991 with Antonio Hart “Tokyo Sessions” has one of the best versions of Monk’s “Straight. No Chaser” that I have ever heard. A real pounding, funky, blues style version with a march like drum accompaniment from Masahiko Osaka that is so like Art Blakey. Always liked this tune, but this uplifting cover really puts a smile on my face (so it must be special J ).