- When: 17 May 2013, 20:00
- Where: Victoria Park
- Number of participants: 3386 (though run open to up to 7000)
- Distance: 10km (2 loops)
Over 3000 women (and the occasional man) all wearing the same orange t-shirt running 10km on a beautiful Saturday night through Victoria park. That was the setting of my last Saturday.
I must say I was a bit concerned… As my roommate went to pick up the documents at the Nike store, no one seemed to be able to point her in the right direction, making her wander up and down in their flagship store on Oxford Circus.
Additionally, as it didn’t say anywhere on the papers whether there is a baggage drop-off, I called in, where again, no one could really tell me… Customer service however made the effort to find out for me and called me back a few hours later. Still, it’s a bit surprising such a major event, with the good Nike name on it is that disorganized.
On the actual day though, organization seemed to run smoothly, with helpers right from Mile End pointing us in the right direction. The runner’s village that was set up was quite impressive and the thousands of girls all warming up together under a very energetic MC were overwhelming. I chose to remain on the sidelines for that one…
The actual run was divided into three groups depending on targets being either a top runner leading the flock, realizing a PB or just being there to finish it.
On the upside, the atmosphere was absolutely amazing and definitely contributed to me marking my PB.
On the downside, the event was definitely overcrowded… It took me and my friends up to 10 minutes to get through the first kilometer…
But what’s with all the wristbands?? a light pink one as goody before the run, a dark pink one with a “We Own The Night” golden plate on it and… finally a color blinking band depending on targets. (Oh, I forgot the paper band to record emergency contacts.)
Anyway, I almost forgot to mention the absolute highlight of this run! As I fought my way through the first loop, I just saw the shadow of a women rushing past by me in an instant and vanishing ever so quickly on the reverse side… Turns out, that was Paula Radcliffe!! Even if an hour later, it was an absolute highlight to run on the same course as her.
Another upside to this run: most cheerers are men who came with their girlfriends or wives, so the cheering fire power is absolutely brutal!
If you’re not a super competitive female runner and can enjoy a slightly crowded run in good company, keep this date free next year!