By Colin Kenny

This was my first time doing this race and it was a really enjoyable experience. It was also my first 5 Mile of the year with my goal to finally crack the 40 minute barrier. My work colleague Will Byrne who is a member of Lucan Harriers assured me it was pancake flat which of course it wasn’t but in fairness it wasn’t anywhere like the torturous course at the 10k Dun Laoghaire which I did recently . The race was celebrating the official opening of the new club track which I know involved years of hard work, false starts and lots of lobbying so   the last few hundred metres finished on the brand new spanking track.  

There was a real party atmosphere when I arrived with a DJ blasting out the 80s tunes (including The Jam – top marks …I don’t like Elton Johns music but in fairness he played I’m Still Standing which is a corker – forget the rest and apologies to any Elton John fans)! It was a beautiful day – warm with a light breeze so there was no excuse to crack the 40 minute barrier. Well in truth I did have 2 excuses lined up. I left my Garmin watch at work  and had no sunglasses! However there was a 40 minute pacer which was a God send as otherwise I could’ve done the race in 35 (wishful thinking) mins or 45 mins (more likely).
In the warm up and at the start line  I did not see any  fellow Sportsworlders until Ann appeared out of the crowd at the start also looking for the 40 minute pacer. Happy days as we could encourage each other along the way. Ann was with her husband and being a local of course knew everyone!
Anyway off we went and about 1k in we went up a pretty long drag over the train line which was unexpected which was real hello to the legs. We turned on to the canal which was a beautiful part of the course and from there on in the course was a series of drags up bridges, some downhill and long straights including one around the 6k mark which went on forever seemingly into the wind or  maybe I was just goosed. The good news for me was that I’d left the pacer after the 5k or so mark but. But not having a watch meant I was looking behind to see where he was. With  1k to go I’d noticed he was catching me up. I put the foot down (well I went a tiny bit faster) to make sure he didn’t catch me up. Anyway by the time I got into the track to run the last 300m I’d lost him again. I got a shout out from the DJ too which was nice though at that stage in pretty sure he’d found his 90s mojo and was blaring out the Spice Girls so I needed to get out it out of there as quick as possible. I blocked it out and sprinted for the line imagining it was a less torturous version of our Saturday track sessions..
Anyway I crossed over the line in 39.20 and was delighted. Ann was not too far behind and congratulated each other as she crossed the line..
There was loads of food and craic and a real buzz after the race with a lot of runners hanging around after to encourage the later finishers. A great race and definitely one I’d encourage more people from the club to do this next year. It’s a similar course to our own 5 mile but with a few more uphill drags so it’s a fast enough course.
I for one will be back next year even if it is to hear my guilty Elton John pleasure being blared out by the DJ. Well done to all at Lucan Harriers for such a great event and best of luck to the club with the new track.