Last Sunday was the 43rd annual road race hosted by Dunboyne AC.
The weather was surprisingly warm. The weekend before had been 6-8C with rain, but Sunday was around 19-20C with no sign of even a breeze.
A few of us met up before the race in the Community Centre to get our bib numbers and t-shirts and then strolled out to the start line.
Even before the gun went off it was pretty warm! I did a short warm up run and we chatted with the other 1,000 or so runners/joggers/walkers. I should have elbowed up the crowd a bit nearer the line, but I was too busy chatting.
Once we had started, it took me about a minute to get over the start line and start running. We ran out past the Dunboune Castle Hotel and out onto the bypass. Even there there wasn't a breeze to be found and you could feel the heat coming up from the road. By this stage I had caught up to most of the people I was going to catch, and only reeled in a few more for the rest of the race.
At the half way point there was a fantastic sight - a water station with cold water! I actually came to a total stop while a cup was filled for me, drank half it, poured the other half over my head and got going again. This section was partly in the shade on the way back to the village due to trees and it was very welcome. Getting back to the main crossroads was hot again. We ran past the finish line and the community centre and left through a housing estate to come back around to the start line.
The heat was really getting to me by now but I kept the pace up. Dunboyne is an unusual course, being a figure of eight, so running back to the crossroads my wife was on the far side of the dividing fence and saw me coming close to the finish line when she had about 2-3k left.
I managed to overtake a couple of more runners towards the end but was delighted to finish! The water and fruit given to each of us at the end was badly needed. We met up as a group at the end, but sadly we forgot to get a group photo - next time.
Congrats to all who ran, jogged or walked the race!