This year on Good Friday, it rain. It rained so much that we had severe flooding and many road closures here in Louisville. I was worried that the course for the next day’s race would be underwater and I’d be swimming the Papa John’s 10 Miler rather than running it.
In a twist of fate, we had the most beautiful weather at the start line. Dry, sunny, with temperatures in the low 40s; almost ideal racing conditions. The route starts near Churchill Downs and goes out Southern Parkway. Nick and I stayed together for these first three miles before entering Iroquois Park, when I told him to go ahead and run his own race. The hills in Iroquois Park were many, but smaller than the ones I run every day in Cherokee Park; both parks were designed by Frederick Law Olmsted. After the final uphill, it was a smooth descent out of the park and back down the parkway. We finished inside Papa John’s Cardinal Stadium, which I thought would be more momentous than it was, but I guess that was my delusion of a crowd of cheering fans.
I have to say that this was one of my favorite races that I’ve run. I might be saying that because I finished strong, and because the weather was so favorable. However, I think I also liked the distance; 10 miles was long enough for me to find my groove, but shorter than a half marathon so I felt that I could push harder. I wanted to use this race to gauge where I’m at and where I want to be for my half marathon this fall, and I’m very pleased.
It also didn’t hurt that there was pizza at the finish line. While I don’t usually care for Papa John’s pizza, I’ll admit that slice wasn’t too bad after 10 miles. Still, Nick and I went out for “the good stuff” at Impellizzeri’s for lunch. What can I say? I’m from Chicagoland and therefore a pizza snob.
Overall, I loved running the Triple Crown series and would absolutely sign up again next year.