The Race 2000

You know how sometimes your mouth is not instep with your mind. When Dudley issued his challenge- any time any where any place, I couldn't let the gauntlet fall to the ground. I immediately piped up "Thursday 5:30 SMU track"

I mean you just couldn't let that go could you?

This was at least a fair race. I had been training for a mile and he is in the best shape of any of those amazing four biking across Canada. It will be very close, so therefore a good race. I did say when I picked up the gauntlet that I would be on his shoulder the whole way. Thursday morning- Dudley calls- wants to know if I have any excuses yet. Then he tries to sniff out my strategy. I repeated "follow you" "this isn't a race for the 4 minute mile. This is for the gold medal at the olympics" It is for the winner, it has nothing to do with time. We might not break 10 minutes. "Norm, if the race starts and you don't move neither will I."

"Go" Starter Jeromes command and we are off. Norm seems to stumble as he gets into a rather pedestrian pace. I on his shoulder. He says, on the backstretch, maybe we should do something for the fans on the way by the first lap. Being a greyhound, I immediately offer up a moon but he declines.

First lap- 107 seconds rather slow in that I had done an 87 second lap at the start of the Geezer Mile. But Norm is setting the pace. Second lap- 105 seconds still slow. Third lap- 104 seconds As this is registering on my pea size brain and I am contemplating s l o w l y raising the pace, He accelerates like someone has put a hot poker up his ass. He has a 7 or 8 yard lead on me and I haven't even started to move.

I start to pick up speed and by the middle of the backstretch I have pulled up to his shoulder again. But what a price? I am a little winded. As we come around the final turn, with the wind in our face, he actually finds another gear just when I am feeling the sapping strength of the wind. Oooh this is going to hurt.

I start to accelerate but he stays out there 2 yards ahead and the distance doesn't shrink. then slowly but surely I sense that yes it is getting smaller, the distance is shrinking. That drives me to push harder. I think I am beside him wondering if he has yet another gear. With 10 yards to go, I can go no harder, and I am spent.

Fortunately, for me, he had left it out there. Imagine, the last lap and 9 yards in 77 seconds. Who would have thought it? While the time was a rather pedestrian 6 minutes and 23 seconds, it hurt an awful lot more than the Geezer mile run 9 seconds faster.

These are definitely a lot of fun. Sure they hurt but I now know that I can run a 77 second lap and I would never have found that out without Dudley's help. Thanks Norm and thanks to all who came out to see. We could do these with any number of people and amount of ability. Just handicap them like the old Tweedle will/ Tweedle won't races.

I wouldn't want to do them every week (they would interfere with my training) but once a month would be a hoot.

Gordon aka Viking