Saturday, February 12, 2011
Race Review: Mermaid Run 10k
When I saw my friend Marison finish this morning’s 10k, I gave her a light hug. I really should have given her a big kiss on the cheek for letting me know about the all-women Mermaid race series, now in its second year here in San Diego.
The half marathon, 10k and 5k courses begin and end at Tecolate Shores in Mission Bay Park. We arrived in plenty of time to park close to the start/finish and expo, filled with vendors who were quite generous with freebies. My refrigerator is full of food and my swag bag is bulging. And – get this – I never saw a long line to use the portable toilets. I think that’s a first.
We were blessed with perfect running weather – full sun and mid 40s at the start. Our 10k started 15 minutes after the half marathoners, and the 5k runners were 15 minutes after we were off toward Fiesta Island. The course is pancake flat, and the nice headwind along the westside of the undeveloped island was appreciated as the sun bore down.
I don’t run races with music, but almost everyone surrounding me did. As a result, it was quite quiet as we circled the island and did a loop toward Sea World before heading back to the park.
That’s where it got interesting since the course isn’t closed and by this time the sidewalks were packed with runners, walkers, strollers and the occasional rollerblader. I actually had to weave the last half mile and was forced to pull up suddenly to avoid colliding with a group of walkers just as I turned toward the finish shoot. But it also was nice to be surrounded by so much activity after the dearth of it earlier.
My stopwatch said I finished the 10k in 55:55, so we’ll see how that squares with the official results for this chip-timed race.
The official T-shirt was an I’ll-actually-wear-this-one hoodie, and each of us received a silver running necklace after we exited the finish shoot. The deejay and emcee both were pitch perfect, and the entire morning just shined. The event reminded me of my last “chick race” in Del Mar a couple of years ago.
The organizers and sponsors of the San Diego Mermaid Series, including title sponsor Prevention, did a fantastic job, and it wasn’t just me who thought that. I make a point to support businesses that support running and particularly those that encourage women to invest in their health. Everyone I saw (except for one woman who threw up right at the end point) was all smiles and all compliments all morning. The Mermaid Run 10k gets an A+ from this old ‘maid.