After a long, hard winter of training members of the London Runner Distance Club ‘ran away’ with it at the Good Friday Downtown 5k road race, hosted by Runners’ Choice. Marking this as the goal race at the end of their winter training season, the top competitive London area running group put on a dominant display – claiming 10 of the top-19 spots and posting a stunning 30 Personal Best times, a feat head coach Steve Weiler admits will be “pretty hard to top” in the near future.
While for many Personal Bests were the goal, for some LRDC members those PB’s came along with a nice paycheque. Club athletes Connor Hammond (2nd male overall), Chris Nagle (3rd male overall), Bethany McChesney (2nd female overall), and Annette Barry (2nd female Master) all received a nice Easter present in the form of cold hard cash for their efforts. Some excerpts from club members follow below:
“For me, training has been going really well, and seeing consistent improvements I was really looking forward to this race to gauge where I was at. I was more excited for this race than I was nervous! I barely slept the night before! It was also a huge push for me to have a teammate running alongside me the whole way, although words weren't exchanged I felt his support for me and my race, and it really made a difference in my focus and my confidence. It is a very selfless thing to do when you pace someone, I really appreciated it! I felt great in the race and loved it - every minute of it. Tons of fans cheering as I went through the halfway area gives you a major boost. Loved it! Can't wait to race again!”
-Bethany McChesney, 18:15.40, 2nd Female overall, top Canadian
"It felt great to run a road PB in my first race of the season. This was a good launching point for my outdoor season. It was great to see so many LRDC members run PBs and finish well overall. I have really enjoyed the training environment of LRDC so far and am looking forward to the months ahead.”
-Matt Suda, 15:41.55, 5th overall, 3rd Canadian
"It was an amazing day for our group out there, and a great indicator for things to come this outdoor season. I’ve announced close to 20 road races in London since forming this club, and this was the first time that when the lead runners approached the finish pretty much all you could see are London Runner singlets and Kenyans.”
-Steve Weiler, LRDC Head Coach and Downtown 5k Race Announcer