Phew, it was a hot one!
But what an impressive turnout! 158 Eagles braved the heat and turned up in Gunnersbury Park to run in the annual Ealing Eagles 10km on 8th May 2016. A huge number of Eagles also turned out to volunteer so a big thank you to all of you, as well as the organising committee – putting on this race is a massive undertaking and we really appreciate all your efforts!
Those volunteering, like myself, probably had the better job, as I got to stand in a nice shady spot and cheer everyone on! There were a few looks of pain that passed me but also there was a lot of smiling faces enjoying the race, and a surprising number of PBs! Well done everyone, and a big thanks to the pacers that got people round!
First man home for the Eagles was Jose Manuel Pabon in 37:49 and first lady for the Eagles was Melissah Gibson in 42:20. Jen Watt also won her age category in 43:20, as well as beating Mr Santry, well done Jen!!
Here are a few words from some of those on and round the course today!
Susy Dand – Post Baby PB!
7 months ago I did what felt like my own marathon, and that was giving birth to my daughter. I had to stop running when I was 15weeks pregnant due to severe morning sickness. I volunteered at last years 10km and told myself I would run this year, after another Eagle mum told me she was running 6 months post baby.
So, somehow I found myself lining up on Sunday to do my first 10km in 18mths. (The comedy for me was that it was while running the Cancer Research winter 10k that I realised I was pregnant.) my little one was being entertained by Gill (an Eagle spouse) & seemed quite happy. My husband had been asking rather concerned questions all of last week - 'so what are you thinking about Sunday' & 'are sure you should be doing this?'. I had bee running & doing buggyfit but longer runs had been harder to fit in.
My determination... No, stubbornness got me there. As I stood looking at people I was sure had trained more than me, and wondering if I would manage half of it - I had 2 ladies next to me discussing that they had done 5km a few weeks before but nothing since. It made me wonder, many I could.
Before I know it,.we were off. The first 4km hurt - a lady cheering started shouting '' baby steps. Come on baby steps.' There wasn't much politeness in my head. I ran past the water station with t her lovely smiles and then got down to the trees.
I walked slowly down behind the trees on the second lap crying because I was hot, not sure I could continue with faster runner's flying past me on there third full lap & worrying whether Elizabeth was behaving or not. As one faster runner came past and started walking, and seeing the smiling Marshall clapping at the end. I had a little word with myself. So I started running again.
The rest of it I plodded & walked. I saw my little one sleeping & some familiar faces. The last lap felt do able - at the 8km I poured the water over my head and set my mind on the end. As I came down the last straight I was relieved I was going to be under 90min, and went as fast as my little legs would carry me. The Eagles cheers carried me to the end. I had done it - it was 25min slower than before Elizabeth. But I had set myself a PBPB - post-baby PB.
I then drank A LOT of water & ate what was in my fab pink bag.
Thank you to all who cheered, Gill for looking after Elizabeth& the Marshall with the big smile. It was great to be back in the coup, if I bit too hot.
Catherine Mulrenan - A Volunteer’s Perspective
Having had to make my decision to transfer my place to the lovely Lynne Kirkwood Price I knew I still wanted to be part of the 10k. I'd volunteered last year not knowing at that point I had the start of the whooping cough so am really hoping I'm not going to be jinxed next year as would love to run it one day! On saying that, this is one of the only races recently ( and I have had to pull out of a lot) that on race morning I had no FOMO whatsoever. Way, way too hot for me!
I was delighted my girls had agreed to come and volunteer too. It meant an early morning start for them which doesn't always bode well but the fact Jessica remembered the bacon sandwiches for volunteers last year seemed quite a convincing factor! Well that and the fact they really think the Eagles are a pretty awesome bunch of people!
I did feel a bit guilty that I would be leaving them so they could medal marshal right in the sunshine to go off to my shady spot at the bottom of the course but to be honest I think they quite liked the independence and responsibility!
At ten o'clock off I went to a beautiful spot with a little Easten and a little Mitchell ...what more could you ask for! Stuart did a great job putting up the sound system and worked really hard throughout.
We were based at a crucial junction ( aaaargh, the pressure!) but thankfully between Claire, Una and myself we sent everyone in the right direction!
Being a cheer squadding marshal was fantastic. We clapped everyone although it was obviously particularly great to see all the Eagles flying round, complete credit to every single one who ran in that heat! Skye got a special kiss each lap from mummy Easten and she did some great clapping herself. I think Skye was supposed to be ringing a cowbell to support but Claire Morris obviously had taken quite a shine to it and I'm sure most of the cowbell ringing came from her hand!
Kieren was hard at work taking brilliant photos down at the point we were. I do hope I've managed to stay out of most of them, I think I was pretty successful, thankfully! (yes you were, I couldn't find any of you!!)
As a marshal the organisation was great right through from registration to the finish. A huge well done to the team. The way the Eagles work together at this event is just one more reason why I feel completely and utterly proud to be an Eagle.
Sue Park – Words from the baggage tent
What may seem like a boring job is actually a great opportunity to chat to runners from near and far. The lady from Windle Valley Runners with a really low race number who ran her first 10k in last years race and hasn't done another since. She'd enjoyed 2015 so much she entered as soon as it opened and brought a friend this time.
I also recall the chap who arrived at 11:10 from Halifax via Richmond (wrong train), laden with luggage (I take less on a 2 week holiday), long sleeved, running tights, a jacket - none of which he wanted to remove despite my pleas...and his only explanation for it all - "I'm a friend of Rachid"!