Race Recap: Get Lucky 7k
Happy St. Patrick’s Day! As you awake from last nights festivities, here is a recap from the 4th annual Team Ortho Get Lucky Irish 7k. While the temps were cold and the roads slick, the event left participants with a warm song in our heart. Oh how we love our Irish races.
It was surreal jogging to the race start. Like green ants converging on the hill, every street in every direction of 2nd and Portland was crawling with racers. The sun peaked through the buildings, revealing thousands of racers, many sporting their Team Ortho race sweatshirts. Others wore Irish themed shirts, boxers, or whatever green clothing they could find. I one guy was wearing a kilt, fake red beard and hat with built in red hair.
The Race Course
As the bagpiper finished his last tune, the gun sounded at 9 am. Due to the magnitude of racers, they started us in waves. Not wanting to push forward, we were in the middle (8:30’s). It took about 12 minutes, but when it was our turn, we darted over the starting mats and were off!
The first stretch near the Guthrie Theater was like running on an ice rink. Baby steps were needed traversing the stretch of road from Gold Medal park to the Stone Arch Bridge. Once there, it opened up a bit, and the footing seemed better. Running down St Anthony Main is always fun, especially in a sea of Irish green.
We crossed the river again at the Plymouth Ave bridge, the only real hill on the course, and proceeded towards down West River Parkway. I decided to see open it up a little – conditions considered. I darted and dashed, zigged and zagged, weaving my way through runners from a bit before the Hennepin bridge to the finish line, a half mile away. Surprisingly, others were starting as I crossed the finish line in 35:49.
As usual, Team Ortho put on a good show. 4.3-ish miles doesn’t require much support, but there were two aid stations, and medical tent on the course. Everything was highly efficient. Course entertainment was a bit weak, but I imagine that had to do with the cold. Porta potties were plentiful and lined two city blocks. Medals and post race snacks were also designed for efficiency. Chips, banana, Nut Goodie Bar and a peach cup were easily grabbed in their pre-bundled bags. I also appreciated how they had an early packet pickup. We got ours three weeks ago.
My only complaint (if you can call it that) was that it was really hard to settle into a pace. Between the elbow to elbow people, and out-of-nowhere ice slicks, it was hard to keep stride. Once I surrendered to the experience, I had a blast.
This race was a lot of fun! Not because of a course PR, or the entertainment. No, it was fun because on one cold day in March, 11,000 people showed up, dressed in green, and ran together. It’s great to feel like you’re part of something so much bigger than yourself.