I can’t think of many reasons why I would voluntarily choose to get up at 4.30 in the morning to go to Aberdeen. The D33 race is one of them. On the face of it 33 miles out and back from Duthie park to Banchory along pancake flat cycle paths is a pretty uninspiring race concept, however this is one of those races that turns out to be much more enjoyable than you would expect. In the same way that Carnethy5 ushers in the hill running season after a long dark winter the D33 brings the Scottish Ultra running community out in force for the first time of the year. Chatting with other runners on the start line very few seemed to be here to ‘race’, most were using it as a hard training effort. That was the case with our wee group of Bellas and our adopted Bella for the day Joe Symonds.
Myself Joe and Nick are all building towards the fling so were looking for a decent hardish effort, although nick had a double planned for sunday so was taking it a bit easier. Robbie and Davie were dipping their toes in the Ultra waters for the 1st time . Joe’s plan was to “go out at 6min mile and see how it felt” so a lonely day at the front for him then. I was planning to go out at 7s and maybe pick things up in the 2nd half. I hit half way in about 1:55 and felt pretty comfortable and picked up the effort a bit in the 2nd half to finish 4th in 3.48:57. I think a tiny negative split. Pretty relieved to finish ahead of my 2012 time which removes a little monkey from my back. Thats the 1st time I have beaten any of my pre-brain haemorrhage times. It’s only taken 761days! It’s probably a soft pb as it’s from 2012 now to start hitting those from my peak.
Robbie finished about a minute behind me in 5th to be 1st v40. Great result for him, lets hope he does a few more ultras and actually trains for them. Nick had a solid run to finish in 4.11. Our other Bella Davie Weatherhead had to pull out injured. And at the front Joe cruised to the win in 3.21, claiming a mid race jobby stop cost him his target of sub 3.20.
A nice specially brewed beer from Park Brew at the finish line was very welcome, a nice wee touch from a great wee race.