This was an absolutely beautiful day to run in New York City, and perfect conditions for the Staten Island Half Marathon. This is the first time I've run this race since 2003 I think. This is the first year I've ever run all five of the half marathons in the five-borough series, and it was a nice finale.
Getting up and out the door a little after 6:00 a.m., I caught the 7:30 boat, and the waiting room was packed with runners, as full as I've ever seen it. That left not a lot of time to spare on the other side, from waiting for the porta-potty to checking my bag and getting to my corral. But we were off at 8:30 sharp.
The course is a good one, starting on the access road to the ferry/Richmond County Bank Ballpark, to its entrance on Richmond Terrace, back towards the ferry and on to Bay St., eventually coming to a turnaround on Father Cappodano Blvd. at about 6.5 miles, then back, with a deviation through Ft. Wadsworth, along the same route to the finish in the parking lot near the ferry. The out-and-back layout really makes the race feel like it goes by fast, because before you know it you're at mile 6.5 and on your way back. There are some gentle hills, but nothing worth mentioning. (I'm always a little disappointed that the course avoids the tough hills.)
I haven't been feeling very speedy lately, so I wasn't expecting a PR, but was hoping for sub-1:25. I started out at about 6:25 pace and tried to settle into a comfortable, sustainable pace. Some miles were a little faster, some a little slower, but I kept on pace pretty well and finished in 1:24:12, in 90th place, 86 male, 13th in the 40-44 age group.
I was also a little disappointed that aside from a few West Side Runners who I don't know very well, I didn't see anyone there I knew! If they were there, I didn't see them. But this is a big race day everywhere, so I guess people were off doing something else. Still, it was a very nice race and a very nice day.
As I said, it was the first year I've run all five of the five-borough half marathons, a couple of which came soon after some very big ultras, but the series went well for me:
Manhattan, Jan. 24: 1:22:21
Brooklyn, May 22: 1:26:29
Queens, July 24: 1:28:13 (2nd in age group)
Bronx, August 15: 1:24:46
Staten Island, October 10: 1:24:12