Tuesday, March 17, 2009

03/14/09: Dash Down Greenville

Worst. Dash Down Greenville. Ever.

Okay, that’s more harsh than it is true even if it was my slowest, by two seconds, and the weather for the race was the worst I remember but it wasn’t all that bad – chilly and damp, but not cold, not rainy, not windy. Had it been any of those things this race report would be based solely on guesswork. See enough sunny, 60-degree race days and you start to get a little spoiled, I guess; this was just a mildly crappy day at the end of a meteorologically challenging week. Anyway, for all the gloom attendance didn’t seem to suffer much – 2128 timed finishers (including No First Name Mason and Forrest Gump) this year as opposed to 2156 last year and 1761 in 2007.

In past years this race was sponsored by Two Rows brewpub; not long after last year’s Dash the Greenville location of Two Rows closed. Central Market stepped up to handle the hosting duties, which was a profitable move on their part – I stopped in between the race and the Dallas St. Patrick’s Day Parade for a coffee and two shamrock cookies. These are cookies shaped like shamrocks, not cookies made of shamrocks. I think.

The change in venue also meant some changes to the course, the most important of which was a reversal of direction which is actually beneficial – it puts the hilly section of the course (Southwestern Boulevard) earlier in the race instead of having it lurk just before the finish. The next major change was to eliminate part of Southwestern Boulevard in favor of the section of Caruth Haven between Greenville and Southwestern, which may have also taken some hills out of the course. Finally, they eliminated some turns by staying off of Milton and the unknown side street – Matilda, maybe – and just having us run down University all the way to Greenville, then turn to the north and head to the finish.

So they made all these changes that should make for a faster course, and I ran a disappointing 25:21. Too much bratwurst (that’s not a euphemism – I had brats for lunch three times this week) and not enough exercise in recent days, I guess. Adding insult to, well, insult, my nemesis tied me. Maybe. For some reason, the results are listed with times down to the hundredth of a second except all the hundredths are give as .00. I like to think I edged him by a tenth of a second or so.

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