Sunday, March 23, 2014

On the Run: Corktown Race 2014

Race season is picking up and I'm falling behind in my posts! Even though I raced today I'm just now getting around to my report about last week's race - the Corktown 5K in Detroit.  I've always heard it's a fun race but also heard it's very crowded (nearly 10,000 runners) and hard to actually race so I've hesitated to sign up for it. This year I thought I'd give it a try since I run in that area often with RUNdetroit and I was also convinced by the race director, Doug Kurtis, to do it.  You can't really tell Doug Kurtis no when it comes to racing!   

I had my last 20-miler scheduled for Sunday so I got up at 4am.  I wanted to be able to finish that run (obviously at a slower pace than my usual 20-milers), change my clothes and shoes, and get down to Corktown early enough to find parking.  Was I crazy to run 20 miles and then go race a 5K?  Yes.  Yes I was.  But I really needed to get in that last 20 and it was the only time I could do it.  Plus I looked at it as training to see how I could push myself in those final 3 miles.

I sure picked a year go to this event.  Everyone said this was the coldest Corktown Race they could remember!  It was something like 15 degrees with a windchill making it feel at least 10 degrees colder.  Brrr!  Brian braved the cold and went with me. While I did all my pre-race stuff (port-a-potty, huddling in the RUNdetroit tent, warm-up jog), he walked to Mudgie's Deli for St. Patty's Day treats.  He was back in time to see me start and watched me cross the finish line, although it was so cold that his camera didn't work to take pictures!

Although it was a super crowded race, starting right up at the front made it all okay. I didn't have any problems racing it and contrary to the warnings I received, there weren't drunk people stumbling onto the course, nobody clotheslined me with a beer, and I wasn't tripped by anyone in a kilt.  With so many people there for the parade the crowd support was fantastic!  Definitely lots of fun sights to see up and down Michigan Avenue. The first two miles were windy and I ran both of those at 7:00 minutes even.  Then for mile 3 there was a nice tail wind, speeding me up to a 6:48 final mile.  I'm sure knowing I was nearing the end didn't hurt!  

I ended up finishing in 21:41, which was a few seconds faster than my last 5K but not my fastest.  Definitely more of a 10K pace.  I'd like to say I can blame those 20 miles I ran before the race but it's probably due to the fact that I'm just a poor 5K runner. Ah well, the speed work will eventually pay off.

We didn't stick around for the parade, nor did I get a beer or whiskey afterwards. Honestly, I was just just so darn cold and hungry that all I wanted to do was get my Starbucks coffee and oatmeal and get into warm clothes!  Maybe next year we'll make more of a day of it.  I will certainly be doing this race again!  




CLIF Shot - vanilla

Whiskey in the Jar / The Pogues
Good Rats / Dropkick Murphys
Selfish Man / Flogging Molly
The Great Defector / Bell X1
Barroom Hero / Dropkick Murphys
Devil's Dancefloor / Flogging Molly
Salvation / The Cranberries

Did you run a St. Patrick's Day race this year?


  1. I like to make a good day of that one, sometimes. I can't blame you for bailing because of the cold too. The parade and street boozing is much more fun in the warm years anyway, because you are mixing a lot of the neighborhood folks, the runner, and the people from the burbs.

    Nice time for putting in 20 before.

    1. Yes, hoping for warmer weather next year to hang out with people! :) Thanks for your comment!

  2. Think of those cold breezes under a kilt....