Sunday, October 13, 2013

Strolling through Hartford

All in all, a very good day for race 2 of the Fab Five Fall Follies Fund Raiser.

What promised to be a rainy one in the end became sunny and actually quite warm as the 20th Hartford Marathon kicked off my 2-day back-to-back marathon weekend.

The race starts at the Capitol building amidst pomp and circumstance.  The Governor's Protective Detail, the oldest such in the country, marched onto the steps of the library and presented the colors.  A police chief sang the national anthem.  A priest from Newtown, home of the senseless tragedy at its elementary school, intoned prayers for a safe run.  Finally, a group of dancers, oddly positioned mostly behind the half- and full marathon runner area, danced with Boston Strong shirts and a dance version of Sweet Caroline singing.  And 7 minutes late, the race finally started.

After that, it was pretty much business as usual.  The first part of the marathon weaved in and out of Hartford's downtown and Connecticut Riverfront areas.  Then around mile 11, it headed northeast into residential areas.  A U-turn at mile 17 sent us back the way we came.

Fall is in the air - but today was warm and sunny

The last few miles found the course crossing a massive bridge over the river before heading down Asylum Street (perfect for Marathon Maniacs such as myself) and a left turn back to the park through the Hartford Arch.  The finish line was a few steps further.

Finish Line - Through There!
I cruised in right at my target pace of 9 mins/mi.  3:55:57 in total.

Near the end, a fellow Maniac (for there were tons on the course, each greeting me with a hearty "Maniac!"), Jc came up to me spotting me from behind somehow.  He urged me to sprint the end with him, but I declined to not waste anything for today's Newport Marathon.  He finished a few mins ahead of me (his first under 4 hours this year - he's trying to run 52).  We chatted as we walked to get our medals, and then he dashed off to the airport to run Chicago today. I zipped to the hotel to shower and get ready for the Newport drive.

Thanks for all the donations that have come in so far!  I'll update everyone after Newport. links to the donation page.

22 States!