|"I can't believe how slow you were!" ever-tactful comrade Ken Swab says at the Montgomery County Coin Club meeting a few nights after the race.|
Freckled fawn hesitates as it crosses Riffleford Rd in front of the car. I keep singing along with The Cars hit "Let's Go!" that has just come up on the oldies station. A back-road route to Riley's Rumble is peaceful on a hyper-humid summer morn. Soggy singlet comes off before the event starts. After a couple of foolishly optimistic miles at 8.5-9 min/mi pace it's clear that overheating is the day's theme.
Aid stations every few miles offer cold water and Gatorade. Crunching mouthfuls of ice and swallowing it keeps total meltdown at bay. Kenna Libes at the turnaround helpfully offers a lime ice-pop. Another green one, picked up off the ground where an earlier runner discarded it uneaten, is also tasty.
Just after he crosses the finish line Ken Swab kneels down on the ground. He asks me to pour a cup of water over his roasted noggin. Caren Jew and Barry Smith pace themselves more sensibly in the swelter. Christina Caravoulias volunteers at pre-race registration and takes photos near the finish line.
Official result: 221st place overall (474 total finishers), 149th of 265 men, 14th among 27 males aged 55-59, gun time 2:10:50, chip time 2:10:36 for an average pace of 9:58 min/mi
(cf. GPS trackfile and 2004-07-25 - Riley's Rumble Half Marathon, 2006-07-23 - Riley's Rumble 2006, 2008-07-27 - Riley's Rumble, 2009-07-26 - Riley's Rumble Half Marathon, 2010-07-25 - Riley's Rumble, ...) - ^z - 2011-08-19