Summer Races to Watch for…

I’ve been asked to provide some
suggested races for those of you who can’t make it to the track at the
beginning of the workout to hear my “carefully prepared” speeches … and/or for
those who are just looking for some racing guidance considerations.

My list below is not complete, nor is it
exhaustively researched (okay, in the sense that I have run these races, they
have been “exhaustively” researched)! The list is just a grab bag of several
interesting runs to consider. I invite each of you to send in your
recommendations for the coming months, and we can build up a list of races
worth running.

Looking forward from July 1, here are
six races for posting on the Club Ed racing list:

(1)  Village Runner 5K, July 4 – there are lots of 4th of
July Runs, and there are several good ones to consider. The local favorite,
hands down (or knees up!) is the Village Runner 5K. Along the Esplanade in
Redondo, you can be sure to chase some of your fiercest competitors, see a lot
of friends, curse at a street that you could have sworn was generally flat, and
start off the Fourth with a memorable effort.

(2)  Coach’s Handicap, July 23 – Literally for decades (back to the
80’s), we have been putting on our own club race, for club members. Some call
it an excuse to have a potluck breakfast, others call it the most painful
course ever… However you describe it, come out a be a part of it! Submit an
HONEST guess of your current 10K race time to the Coach in the weeks prior to
the race, and we (Mark Silva and I) will handicap your race start and send you
on your way (at the appropriate time) over a up-and-down course in Palos
Verdes. Club Ed slower runners get head starts, the race usually “begins” over a
45-minute period, and if all goes well, everybody finishes within a few minutes
of each other. After, we share a picnic breakfast, award some fun prizes based
on the day’s most memorable performances, and work on innovative excuses for
next time. Don’t miss this – it’s lots of fun!

(3)  Dick Fitzgerald 2-Mile Sand Run, Surf
Festival Weekend, August 6

– Two miles in the soft sand from the Hermosa Pier out to Longfellow and back –
what could be better? Come out and run, or come out and volunteer to staff the
event. This is a Saturday morning event and helps to kicks off the Surf
Festival weekend. Perhaps most importantly, it helps to raise some much-needed
$$ for the Mira Costa High School Distance Running Program. Come on, it’s
“only” two miles…!run/c136a

(4)  The Hills Are Alive 5K & 10K, Aug 13 – This is an old-fashioned, dirt trail,
cross-country race, along a portion of the Telephone Pole Trail. Starting at
Ernie Howlett Park in Rolling Hills Estates, it runs along the horse trails,
then cuts down the street and around (and around) the Botanic Garden, then back
along the trails to the Park. It’s dusty, hilly, and hard (usually only a small
handful of racers break 40 minutes in the 10K, for example) … and you can’t
miss this one.

(5)  Conquer the Bridge, Labor Day Sept 5 -  If you ever wanted to run over the Vincent
Thomas Bridge in San Pedro, or walk over the Bridge, or look out over the
bridge, this is the one time each year foot traffic is allowed on the 1500-foot
span over the Harbor. IT’s an odd distance (5.3 miles, and running over the
bridge will give you a new appreciation for driving over it, but consider doing
this one, too.

(6)  Manhattan Beach Old Hometown Fair 10K,
October 1

This is a historical favorite at which grudges are settled or started, bragging
rights confirmed or established, and racing careers magnified or dissipated. A
Manhattan Beach hallmark for almost 40 years, run through the streets, wave to
your friends, try to hang on for the Rosecrans Hill, chase ‘em all down the
Strand, … and then head over to the Fair.

 So that will get you
to October…surely there must be one or two races in there that have caught your
eye? Hope to chase, race, or pace you at one (or more) of them!

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