Monday, May 23, 2011

365/142 5:19 Mile

Posted by Hubby:

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These are pictures from JD’s last track meet of the season – the districts at Bay City Western.  I wasn’t sure what to expect because he didn’t seem to have a lot of confidence initially.  Before the race, he said he didn’t even think he would place because he already knew of 3 or 4 kids that had faster times this year than he did.  But as race time drew near, it seemed like he was getting himself psyched up.

Not to spoil the surprise, but he took 1st with a new personal best of 5:19 (12 seconds better than his previous best).  But the real story is not that he won, it’s how he won.

Throughout the 4-5 years of his running career, JD has always been the 2nd best runner on any team he’s been on.  That situation has led to a certain complacency in him and even the coaches could see it when he ran.  Someone would pass him and he would just let them go rather than try to keep up.  This track season started the same but ended differently.  The team mate that was beating him at the beginning of the season was not a good sport about it and JD started to get rubbed the wrong way.  The only way to solve that was to beat him.  And beat him he did.  Starting a few races ago, JD started to race more competitively, not wanting to let someone get a lead on him and then having a better kick to the finish.  And when he started beating his own team mate, the surprise was that he also ended up finishing 1st overall.

Today’s race was no different.  It was windy so it wasn’t good to be in the lead.  He raced patiently the 1st 3 laps, staying near the front but letting other runners take the lead (and the wind, head on).  At the start of the final lap, the lead runner from White Pine tried to pull away but JD kept reeling him in.  He tried 2 or 3 more times to build a lead but JD stayed with him, about 2-3 strides behind him.  On the last turn, with about 80-100 m left, JD pulled up alongside the White Pine runner and PUT THE HAMMER DOWN (with authority!).  It was all over but the crying as JD sprinted to the finish, widening the lead to about 10-15 yards.  Dad’s estimates might be slightly exaggerated but he was widening the lead with each stride.

It’s the best race I’ve ever seen JD run so far, but hopefully just the 1st of many.  There were a number of points where he could have just settled in and let someone else take over.  But he didn’t and I’m glad to see his competitive fire take hold a little.  He doesn’t have to be in anyone’s shadow any more.

If you’re on Facebook {and friends of me, Moe or even JD}, you can view the recording I made of the race.  You’ll have to excuse the poor video and my excessive yelling at the end.  I’m probably the most obnoxious {in the best way possible} parent when my son is racing and I’m not embarrassed by it one bit.

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