The Running Gods gave to me:
1/2 Marathon: 2:37:58
The Kentucky Derby Festival miniMarathon. Back where it all started, Louisville KY. I hadn’t been back to Louisville in years.
The race course had changed since the last time I ran this. Instead of being a point to point course (and having to bus to the start), the race started and ended in downtown Louisville.
Maybe it was the different course, maybe it was because it had been so many years since I ran the race. Or probably because the water stops were understaffed and I would have to stop running and wait for water, but I didn’t love this race as much as I used to. In fact, when I finished, I felt like it would be fine if I didn’t run this race again for a while.
The course still runs through Churchill Downs, which is definitely a highlight. However, in years past, there would be the call from old Kentucky Derby races playing. Not the case this year and I missed it. Something about hearing the race announcers would motivate me to run a bit stronger. This year I just wanted to be done by the time I reached this point in the course.
It was none the less fun to visit some of the places I used to frequent when Ron and I lived in Kentucky. It brought back lots of good memories, and a few sad ones. Mostly those about having to sell our first home to move.
If you run this race, the miniMarathon is much more popular than the full marathon. If you’re a faster runner, you probably wouldn’t encounter any water stop problems. Or maybe it was just an anomaly this year. I would probably do this race again, because it is special to me. But not in 2013.
If you go, be sure to check out Fourth Street Live after the race for some nightlife! Also, there is a ton to do in the weeks leading up to the Kentucky Derby, so research what other activities are going on.