Raptors kick the shamrocks out of the competition at Dublin 5K

Post date: Mar 18, 2013 1:45:10 AM

Yes, it was St. Patrick's and I'm even part Irish (one grandma was a Rooney and the other a Shannon. It don't get much more Irish than that) but I don't drink so it's not the most exciting holiday in the world to me. But today I showed some semblance of "green spirit" and traveled to Dublin--not James Joyce's city but the other one, the one in California. As lame as I am I didn't even think of the St. Patrick's Day connection to Dublin until as making the final left turn of my journey onto Dublin Blvd.

One I made that turn I was astounded by how many people there were. This was a huge race. I also saw far more young (as in kids) runners than I have ever seen at a race before. Gary had mentioned that this race gets a large youth turnout and he got that one very right!

Jared and Drew make like Raptors before the start.

Not too long before the start I found Jared and Drew and then Daveon, who was on the front row (for good reason it would turn out). All looked happy and ready to go and soon the klaxon sounded and off everyone went. I was dying for coffee and so strolled to the local 7-11 and grabbed a cup. I thought I would have time to easily make the finish but did not anticipate that one had to go waaaay around the library. So I found a spot just after everyone passed under Dublin Blvd. following a creek. I could see the finish line off in the idstance so this seemed like a good place to camp and observe.

It turned out to be a very short wait! Not very long at all after the race winner came by I heard someone yell "Rick!" I had looked away for a minute, fooling with the camera, not expecting any Raptors that quickly. Well, there was a Raptor! It was Daveon, who was in an unreal thirteenth place overall out of 1800 runners! And, of course, being Daveon he didn't even look (or sound!) tired.

Wow, things were already looking rosy for the Raptors. So I paid attention, waiting for the next Raptor, whom I expected to be Jared. But it wasn't, it was prospective (we're trying!) Raptor Erin! Okay, herein lies an interesting and impressive story--I hope I have the chronology right--here's the timeline:

Friday: Erin has school all day, then soccer practice (she's on the No. 1 team in the state and No. 2 in the nation so you can imagine the practices!). After that she goes to basketball practice.

Saturday: Erin gets up early and runs the Brazen Race, finishing (I think) second woman and first in her age group. Saturday night she goes to a sleepover party but leaves at 11:30 or so so she can. . .

Get up at 6:00 a.m. Sunday, head to Dublin and absolutely demolish her age group in the 5K with a stellar 21:07 time!

So, one can see why we would like her in our club! Also, besides being fast she is super fun and nice so she would fit in sooo well with our other girls who are also blazing fast but have zero "attitude."

Right behind (I mean right behind, like a few seconds) was Jared who fought a tough and full field to finish a remarkable 3rd in his age group. Let me stress again that this not a sleepy little "fun run" (although it that. . . well, there are all kinds of fun!) with a hundred folks. This was a ginormous race.

Not that far behind Jared came Drew, who is only nine and whom I swear was two feet shorter than all of those racing him. Drew ran so hard that he threw up at the finish, a fact he relayed to me with a happy smile and no stress whatsoever. This is a tough kid! Drew was 7th in the same age group Jared was in (9-12), which is remarkable. There is a huge difference between nine and twelve! We middle school coaches are well aware of that.

Next in were the Angels. . . that's the Angel family, not the celestial beings. Gary wrote a good thumbnail of their race so here it is:

"Oscar and Finn Angel were mighty excited to compete in their first-ever 5K. They were enthused enough to greet me by reporting on the pre-race meal they had. Most remarkable was that the two only finished problem-free but Mom Susan, Dad Tom and younger brother Peter all ran--so nice whenever a whole family can participate."

Major kudos to the entire family and a special shout-out to Peter who started the race with the goal of running a mile without stopping but ended up doing the entire race that way!

Daveon and Jared with new Raptor parents Susan and Tom in the background.

Yes indeed Daveon was number one which is why he is runner of the week again!

So, there it was. I had to miss the awards ceremony to hop back on the motorcycle and roar back for the Raptors 11:00 a.m. workout! I made it, but just barely. And I showed up in style (belt unbuckled and fly half down--nice Rick) after ripping off my riding clothes and jumping in the truck to head to Cougar Field.

I hope I haven't left anyone out! If I did it's easily fixed!

That was another great Raptors day!