Mike Griffin

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Recent races

• training

In the last three weeks, I’ve run X races. Two track events and two road events.
I did a 1500m and a mile on the track and 6K, 10K and 5K on the road.

The first track race was in Irishtown on a lovely evening with only a little breeze.
I was entered in the B grade with Ciaran and I was intent on sticking to him for as
long as I could.
We went through the first two laps in a fairly slow pace, 70 and 73 seconds if I
remember correctly. There were about 10 of us in the race and it was very tight with
everyone bunched up. I got caught out when the break went on the last lap and
ahd to finish strongly to pass out a comple of people in the finishing straight. I
finished in 4:23.36.

The next track race was in Santry. I entered into the B grade again and there were
only 6 of us in the race. This race was quicker than the last one and Ciaran was
doing a good job of keeping a steady pace and letting everyone else run up and down
around him. I lost contact with 300m to go but the guys in front of me went out
to the second lane so I scooted up the inside and made a push with about 120m to go.
I was catching the guy in third and he tried to pick it up but I got past him and
almost caught Ciaran on the line. My time of 4:37.29 was good enough for third place
and the guy that won it ran away from us right from the get go. There was no A race
so I reckon he would have run in that if there was.

The two road races were both Leinster races, the Leinster Novice Road in Gowran and
the Leinster Senior Road in Rathdrum.

In Gowran we came home as the second team, I was second home for the club after Darren
and one place away from getting a county medal. I did the 6K in 20:42 for 11th place.
I felt I managed to hold on well through the four laps and didn’t drop off on the last
climb. I even managed to outsprint the guy who passed me on the last corner. It was
a very fast downhill finish which was nice after slogging up a long slow hill.

Rathdrum was a proper hilly course. Two laps, starting off with over a kilometre of
downhill where it was hard to hold back. Then a sharp left hand bend into some rolly
bits for a while. After 4K it was up a steep hill that felt like it was going on
forever. When you got to the end of this, it should have been downhill all the way
again, but no, they had another sharp hill on the main road before the downhill to the
half way point. Then go do it all again.

Before the half way point I was the closest I have ever been to dropping out in a race.
I felt wretched, slow and hurt all over. Then I looked at my watch and realise why. I
was running way faster than I had intended. Somewhere around 17:10 for the first 5K.
I caught up with Ciaran and Darren at the end of the downhill but I had used up too much
on this section and was quickly dropped again. I felt like I was going backwards up
the hills and had a sneaky look or two behind me to make sure that there was no one
too close to me. Diarmaid was a good bit back and suffering as much as I was.

I crested the last hill and said I had better pick it up. I managed some sort of a
sprint and then we had to do a 180 degree turn into the car park of the football
club to the finish. I crossed the line in 34:56 on my watch for a 3 second PB. There
was a tense few minutes as Jim worked out the permutations but we eventually found out
that we had come first in the club competition and also that the four of us that scored
were on the first county team as well!

So a really successful day out, two medals and a cup to bring back to Liffey Valley.