This morning I looked at two of my friends Blogs. First, I read Brooklyn Running, an interesting story about a women who had the fastest time in the Nike Women's Marathon in San Fransisco. It seams that the fastest runner did not win the race. To make a long story short, 19 women were invited to start with the elite lead pack. However, the fastest women was not one of them. Since she was not competing with them (maybe they would have run faster if she was running next to them?) "Still, she was not initially declared the winner because she had not run in the 19-woman elite field, starting instead 20 minutes later with the 20,000 other runners in the main pack. " says the New York Times.
I always thought I was competing to win every race I run. Not that I am really going to win, but it was nice to think I was on the same playing field with those who do. Now, I know I am not really competing to win. In next weeks New York City Marathon I will actually be starting 40 minutes after the potential "winners". I am still gonna try to win.
I also read Running PPTC. The writer states the a slower runner is being selfish in making the finish line crew wait for them. "If you are soooo slow that you are holding up the wrap up, face it gracefully, and don't make noise about wanting people to wait for you. Slow doesn't turn people off. Selfish does". I finished last in a 5K once, I ran to support my friend who was running her first race and she did not want to be last. I did this the day after I did a 20 mile training run and I literally limped to the finish line with an ambulance a few hundred feet behind me. The whole town was waiting at the finish line, cheering for me like 5k was a major accomplishment. I would never want to deny those cheers to anybody who finishes the race that they started. I don't think the last person to finish is being selfish, as long as they are doing their best.
Racing is evolving and nobody know who will show up. In San Fransisco the fastest women did not think she would win and in many local races some people are just happy to get to the finish line.