Najem and I had some giggles to 21 J St the night before and planned out our day: run easy 7 in the morning, hang out all cussing day, hustle a mile in galactic speeds, make $ and relax for our 4th of July races... Cussing easy.
The 7 miler was flat and easy out on Athens roads. It was warm but we finished and soaked in the healing waters of the River Saxtons. This meant that we had all day to fret (or I did) about the mile and hopefully win some $.
Najem and I had a plan: we'd go 1, 2 and win all possible $. Sounds easy enough.
Larry Legend joined us for the ride to the capital city. Najem and I were solely going to win $, we weren't going to finger each other cussholes, so I needed to be on. Najem can roll for the mile, an I'm just filthy at everything, so we had a good shot to clean house. Not to mention how handsome.
We hit the capital and the first thing you got to do is size, size everybody up. The winning time from the precious three years is around 4:34 and I by a masters runner. I'm not hating (maybe a little bit) but this shouldn't be a thing. I did see that the masters runner son was 16 the previous year and ran 4:44, this is solid and was second.
The first people we see are said masters runner and his Galen Rupp lookalike son. No bull cuss, I thought it was Galen Rupp finally courageous enough to tow the line against me. This kid looked legit.
Here's how the race goes: $50 bonus to the first person I cross the quarter mile, $100 bonus for the course record, and money to top 5... We in the $.
I was dead set on bringing soemthing home and after a solid sizing of all competitors it was Najem, Galen Rupp and myself. I'm figuring I will need to sprint the whole thing, I got 120 miles from last week and some not cussing around miles from this week, so sprint I must to run well. Truthfully, I figured on sprinting yes, but Najem winning easily with myself second.
At the sound of the gun I was cussing gone, for real. I went, figuring Najem would pass me 200 in and lock up that bonus, what I didn't realize was that I was on the verge of PR-ing through the quarter. I ran with my head turned behind me, set on not losing that bonus. Once I knew I was going to get the bonus toward najem's and i's pocket, I wasn't about to let up and let some sneaky cuss steal something I was killing to get.
I hit the quarter in 56 and felt awesome. Had I not heard my split I would have figured that I ran a 64-65. Now the real questions: will I run 3:44? Did I just cuss my race in the cuss with no protection? Is that time cussing serious? Cuss!
Cuss it, I just kept going... By half way I was ready to be done but saw that Galen was still with us. Najem and him went by me just after half way and starting gapping me. Was I gaped? They put a little distance on me the thirds quarter and knew I was going to rally, I didn't like the lactic acid I was tasting but knew I would close well.
The kid was hanging on Najem but could see Najem putting a stride in front. With less than a quarter to go, Najem and Rupp were 15 meters up, I put my head down and started hunting. I put my head down and told myself to try and get back to Najem's shoulder. My head was down for three strides and in the time I caught the kid, and Najem put another 15 meters on us. He must have switched gears the same time I did but Najem is working with a few gears I don't have installed at this time.
Najem won, just missed the record, but ran 4:24, I was second in 4:29, Rupp was third in 4:31... Kid turns out to be a 4:21 NY high school miler. It was good to know that my VT powers were alive.