Wang Wei 10K

What does the unfortunate Chinese top gun pilot Wang Wei have in common with a Chicago 10K that went off course? Not too much, really, but bear with me. For those of you who might not remember, Wang Wei was the pilot who had been taunting US surveillance planes, flying so close at times that he would even flash his email address on pieces of paper at them! In early 2001 he clipped the wing of a US spy plane and fell to his death. The Chinese claim he was shot down. Because his name sounds like 'wrong way' he became fodder for late night comedians amongst others. Anyway, I went the 'wrong way' in my 10K this past Saturday. The course ran through a windy residential neighborhood and the leader who was way better than everyone else took off and the pace car pulled him out of sight from the chase pack I was in. Just around the 3 mile mark, there was a turn. Some guys ahead of me kept going straight. Two guys right with me got into an argument. One said to turn right the other said straight. I went straight and we got screwed. A few minutes later we realized that no one was following us but we kept running hard for whatever reason and weirdly enough found our way back into the race but now way back in the pack. At this point I was really frustrated and just didn't see the point of running an extra half mile or more and finishing with a lousy time! I'm really surprised that there were no volunteers on that part of the course. Oh well. Before the chaos my splits for the first 3 miles were 5:52, 11:52, and 17:52. It was real hot and humid and I can tell I would have slowed down a bit and probably ended up around 6:00 pace or slightly slower (i.e. 37:20-37:30).

That was only a minor blip though. The weekend was fantastic. My BMLC partner-in-crime John and his wife Jennifer (and their three super cool boys) treated us like kings. We saw lots of cool places and I had a kickass Chicago dog at the world famous Weiner Circle! Fortunately, John wasn't one of the guys who made the detour and he had a solid race after having missed 5 weeks with an Achilles injury. He wanted to run faster, but the weather was real brutal. 4 of the BMLC guys (me, John, Tom, Josh) will be running an 8K in Allen Park, MI in August. Look for a much better showing there. I promise to study the course map!

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