Anna Fitzgerald – Race Report – 2nd in the Sun Run

Congratulations to Anna for her great run on Saturday finishing a close second in cold & wet, typical Sydney summer weather.

Well done also to John Bartlett and Scott O’Connor finishing 7th and 8th respectively.

Results are here:http://fairfax.tiktok.biz/list/sunrun/2013/run/

 Anna’s race report:

 Sydney Morning Herald Sun Run 2013.

 Crash! Boom! The heavens opened up and at 2am in the morning, I was woken by the sound of elephants running across my roof.  Oh! Wait. It was jut the rain!  For the next hour, and then the next hour after that, the rain just did not abate.  I tried to get back to sleep so I would be ready for my 4.40am rousing but it was no use.  Exasperated with my lack of sleep, I woke and looked out the window.  Surely, the event would be cancelled?  More importantly surely, I wasn’t going to run in that! 

 I quickly got my head straight, telling myself: “ Real runners get out there, rain, hail or shine.  Don’t you know this is the stuff of champions?” Yeah right, only if champions are made of lunacy!

 When I got down to the race precinct, I was greeted with countless volunteers and race officials braving the conditions, sopping wet, freezing cold and miserable with beaming smiles on their faces?  Clearly, I needed to get some perspective. It quickly made me forget about the warm up that had left me saturated and ironically, cold; the gusts of wind that were nearly toppling me over; and the 5 step visibility.

 Got ready at the start line, said my hellos and had a quiet chat to Barts.   “ I expect a podium from you, given the select field that had showed for the event today”, I muttered.   Barts said something about his hamstring and then proclaimed, “no decent runners show up in conditions like these.” He was right.  The field was a somewhat down from previous years. Needless to say, there were a few around him who took exception to his statement and he was a marked man from then on. Nevertheless, despite the target on his back he finished a very credible 7th, injury and all. Well done!

 Go! …And we’re off, bang straight up a hill.  Made a mental note of the girls around me and in front of me but kept most of my focus on my breathing, as I wanted to keep it in check.  I certainly didn’t want to go out too hard and then find myself a mess in the final stretch (see, I do learn things from you Mike).  By the 2km mark I was already in 2nd place but kept my eyes fixed on Regan out in first.  I kept the gap in check and was telling myself that I would be able to make ground in the final flat kilometres when I could generate a bit of speed.  Just hang on! 

 The first 4kms were hill after hill after hill.  As, I would reach the crest of one hill I was straight into another.   This state of affairs started to feel oddly familiar.  Hills. Wind. Rain. Insanity. Ah, yes it was just like City to Surf 2012! 

 As I persevered up the hills, it became clear, I needed to find a windbreak.  I looked to the front and to the back of me and counted maybe 3 males but they seemed to be running their own race. My attempts to catch or run with them were met with surges or second wind passing.  Doh!  Where were my fellow HuRTs boys when I needed them?  

 By the time I rounded off Queenscliff Rd onto North Steyne, Regan had put more distance on me.

The Final Sprint

 I was still intent on sprinting the entire way down North Steyne.  To “finish on strong” as Deek would say.  Thankfully, on this occasion, I managed just that. This was particularly pleasing because there was an almighty head wind that hit us as we rounded onto the final stretch.  It was definitely tough going working into that wind in the last 1.8 kilometers, but knowing that the finish line was within sights made it easier.  As too, did the supportive shouts of encouragement from my husband and kids on the finish line.

Women's Podium

 My time was a bit slower than I would have liked but happy to come away with a spot on the podium and not to have done harm to the injury I was sporting. I had a great time, even if I was completely drenched through.   I am, however, hopeful that conditions improve for next years race and that it lives up to its name!  Would like to see the  ‘Sun’ back in the “Sun Run”. 

Drowned Barts

 

Scotty O

 

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