Saw Epi as I arrived at about 7.15am and wished him luck.
I probably didn't do enough of a warm up - just a 2km jog and didn't do my normal race pace strides. I planned to do 5 or so minutes more after a bathroom visit and changing into my race shoes but ran out of time and didn't want to be too rushed getting to the line.
Started at the front of the pack. Michael Dymnicki went out at a pretty quick pace and I settled into 2nd with another bloke running just off my shoulder. (BTW the 1km was way too early, about 150-180m ahead of where it was last year as indicated by my splits below. Think the 2km was in the right spot though). We continued on like this until just after the 2km marker when he surged on me. I had just been thinking how with a bit of luck I was going to have someone to run with/race. Any ideas I had of sticking with him soon went out the window though as he continued on and had a couple of hundred metres on me by the time we got to the Causeway. It was pretty much running by myself from then on apart from picking off the backmarkers of the marathon from about 8km onwards.
Tried to maintain my intensity as much as possible and felt pretty strong over the last 2-3km. Ran 55.17 for the 14.3km by my watch (3.51/km) which was around what I was hoping to run although ideally I would have got under 55mins. We were pretty solidly in third position as although we were well behind the 2 leaders (the guy who had been running with me actually caught Michael Dymnicki and pipped him at the changeover) we had a substantial lead on 4th and the rest of the field.
Handed over to Sandgroper who was running his leg as part of a long run.
Got changed and headed off with Rox and the kids down near the Raffles to see Sugar come past and hopefully give a cheer to others running the marathon. Saw Epi who wasn't looking great but hoped he was just going through a bad patch (that concrete path through Applecross is pretty hard on the legs) and I think Clown (wasn't sure it was him so just gave a general encouragement - sorry Clown if it was you ... )
Sugar came flying past and was looking relaxed and smooth going through the marathon field like a knife through butter. We jumped in the car and I did my best rally driving impersonation to get us to the changeover as Niddy and Sugar hadn't met before and wanted to make sure the exchange went OK. Got there with about 3 mins to spare. Sugar ran 35 and change for his leg which was a brilliant run. We waited for the 4th team to come past and although we hadn't checked our watches, we think we had 4-5mins on them.
Back in the car and to the finish. Didn't get there in time to see the first relay team or anyone running the marathon in under 3.10 go through but saw the second relay team.
Niddy came through not long after having not been challenged by the team in 4th. We finished 3rd in 2.53 and received medals and a $50 Asics voucher each.
We saw Kim come through and finish in around 4.25 which was well outside what she was hoping to run but some setbacks in the last few weeks and having a bad day added up to what must have been a bit of a struggle especially when her goal time got out of reach - so huge respect to her for sticking it out and finishing strongly.
Winner of my age group in the marathon did 2hrs 50 mins so there is definitely something to strive for in the distance. On the basis of my run today, I think I am still on track to run sub 45mins in the 12km @ City to Surf and hopefully (!!) go under 2.55 at the Rottnest marathon or in any case get myself in shape to run under 2.55 if I have a good day.
Commiserations to Epi and Clown who missed their sub 3hr marathons but congratulations to them both for their PBs. Hopefully their next marathon will be the one.
Rox got some photos today so will try to get them up in the next day or so.
1 - 3.09 ( not 1km!!!)
2 - 4.22 (more than 1km since last marker I think - total time 7.32 so think this marker was in the correct spot - average 3.46/km for first 2km so right on pace at this point)
3 - 3.33 (11.05)
4 - 3.51 (14.56)
5 - 3.53 (18.49)
6 - 3.58 (22.48)
7 & 8 - 7.51 (30.39 total - average 3.55/km for these 2km)
9 - 3.57 (34.37)
10 - 4.01 (38.39)
11 - 4.00 (42.40)
12 - 4.00 (46.40)
13 - 3.56 (50.56)
14 - 3.54 (54.30)
14.3 - 0.47 (55.17)
Not that happy with kms 10-12 and felt like I was running quicker but it was hard to gauge as was essentially running alone.