THIS morning I took part in what should have been the Dewsbury 10k. Given its name I really expected to run a 10k, but it was more like 10.2k.
Someone, somewhere had messed up the course measurements. Instead of the 10k we’d been looking forward to and training hard for, all 1200 runners had to run at least 200m extra. This may not sound a lot but when you are pacing for a 10k and every second counts, it’s really unfair to be made to run over distance. We weren’t happy.
I suspected something was amiss when the turnaround cone was not in its usual place. I was forced to carry on running up the hill seeing parts of Dewsbury I’d never seen before.
My pace was 6.36 so I should have got a time of 40:55. I didn’t. With the extra distance, I crossed the line in 41:48. Boo to that!
My friend Sarah ran 6.24 pace so should have been under 40 minutes. She wasn’t.
My friend Fiona should have been sub 37. She wasn’t.
Do you get the idea? It was an absolute shambles.
It was so much over distance that when I crossed the line and realised the error, I wanted my money back. It’s not the cheapest race around and they’d promised a 10k, not a 10.2k.They can’t sell us one thing and deliver another.
But it wasn’t about the money. It was the fact that I’d made Dewsbury my target race. All of my training has been done with Dewsbury in mind. In December, I took part in the Percy Pud 10k to start my training. At that race I ran 41:43. After two months of hard training, I was excited to see what I could do at Dewsbury.
But because that blasted cone wasn’t where it should have been, my time today 41:48 was slower than the Percy Pud, when I was actually running much faster. Thanks Dewsbury!
The Dewsbury 10k has been going for years, so I wonder what went wrong? Why would experienced race organisers get it so wrong?
I’ve done the race many times before and always enjoyed it. It’s usually very well organised with a great atmosphere and a very fast course. I’ve PB’d here a lot and have some fantastic memories. Just last year I had the race of my life and loved every moment. Unfortunately, the 2017 race will always be remembered as the one that went on and on and on.
Instead of leaving the race feeling excited at getting a time I deserved, I left feeling completely fed up. The smiling photos really do not capture how I felt!
To the person who put the cone in the wrong place, I have only one thing to say: shame on you!