Report by Gavin Finlay


If the 5 mile is essentially the 10k “in drag”, then I really ought to have worn a ball gown and high heels. Couldn’t have hurt. I may even have won the costume award. This was my second time racing the BCRF5M, after last year’s contentious “belt buckle-gate” in what was one of my first US races.


The weather was considerably balmier this year and so, conditions couldn’t have been more perfect if you had engineered them in a lab. So, why the slow time? The simple answer: the dastardly hills between miles 2 and 3 banjaxed me and scuppered any designs on a 26:–. The broader answer: the Autumn revival in fitness, from the Summer heat-induced slump, has taken longer than anticipated. I can see the corner; I just haven’t turned it yet. The Trumpian answer: it was a “rigged” course and a nefarious conspiracy by the organisers (and those donkeys in the Democratic Party) to incorrectly measure the course (reports have it measured several hundred metres long). Ok, ok, I think I’ve overdosed on this bizarre US election since living here! Who knows? What I do know is that a lot of work is required over this Autumn-Winter cycle.


The race shot off like gangbusters, cresting the railway line, up Corcoran Street and left on Main for a welcome flat stretch before the hills and turns to come. The lead trio of post-collegiate cheetahs faded into the distance after what must have been a sub-5 min mile (I ran 5:16). Damn, reckless-ish, I could pay for this. I drifted to 5th place between hilly miles 2 and 3 behind my nemesis, the majestically named, Costen Irons. There was brief relief along leafy Watts Street and I began to pick up the pace, enjoying the supportive cheers of locals and volunteers. The final two miles, apart from a moderate climb in the chute, were smokin’ but weren’t enough to redeem the time lost. As always, it was a pleasure to run along Duke East/Buchanan Avenue, and then careen down the ghostly streets of downtown. Small consolation, the damage was done. Felt surprisingly good crossing the finish line, which I suppose, augurs well for the cooler days ahead.


Well done to all BCTC folks who ran the 5 and the Half.

5th Gavin Finaly in 27:30 (2nd M35-39)