La Rochambelle 2013 [39’51” – 105th & 8th V2]

some of the 18,000 runners, June 15, 2013For the second time in a row, I ran the 10k that is one of the races of Courants de la Liberté, celebrating D-day anniversary from Juno Beach (marathon), Pegasus Bridge (half-marathon) and Mathieu British War Cemetery, all ending at the Caen Museum for Peace. The most important race is however “La Rochambelle“, which is a women-only race where, this year, 18,000 runners put on the same pink t-shirt and ran or walked the 5k circuit. The benefits all go to local breast cancer associations. (We had hopes to have my mother, my wife—that you may be able to spot in the above picture—and my daughter jointly in this race but my daughter preferred to stay home to prepare her finals. Instead, my mother-in-law picked the challenge and joined us.) As for last year La Rochambelle, the sight of this pink wave flowing down though the streets of Caen is a unique and highly emotional sight, where the community of spirit among the participantes and the complete lack of competition between them are obvious. (A lot of them run another race the day after.)

finish line, Stade Elitas, Caen, La Rochambelle, June 15, 2013Despite my long break in training, and slow recovery, I decided to run the 10k, if only to check how much I had lost compared with last year (where I finished second V2). Contrary to last year, the weather was perfect: cool with neither (Norman) rain nor (Channel) wind. After a fairly quick start (3’34” on the first km!), I managed to keep with my 3’52” goal for a few kms and then inexorably had to give up seconds and positions to end up just under the 40mn barrier, more than one minute worse than last year. Not very surprising. I just hope I can get enough proper training this summer to recover in time for Argentan 1/2 marathon (to which the ‘Og is inextricably linked!) and maybe the Pont de Normandie 1/2 marathon…


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