The last Wednesday in May is the annual Barrie Rotary Fun Run. This race has been part of our annual calendar since we first moved to Barrie in 2008, and this year was no different! The weather was about as good as we have ever had it – 20 degrees, partly cloudy, and hardly any wind! It was a beautiful evening!
Joining us this year were three other Captain’s and their Angels from My Team Triumph. Captain Jaxon and Angel Rob, Captain Justin and Angel Dave were all making their debut on the Accessible Racing circuit. Captain Giovanna and Angels Sarah, Christina and Lisa had so much fun at the April 6 MEC Barrie Race 1 that they’d come back for another go!
Two teams – Captains Jaxon and Giovanna – opted to do the 5K while Captain Justin and I went ahead and competed in the 10K.
The race organizers were fantastic to work with all spring, so we were expected and welcomed with open arms – thank you to everyone involved! We also had some amazing family members volunteering with us for this race – Paula, Susan, Graham and Pat I was especially grateful to them for being there because when we arrived at the Southshore Centre and took out my power wheelchair (so that I could run around and do all the last minute organizing things) we turned it on and the CPU blew! Not the best timing, I have to say! After putting in an emergency maintenance call to the wheelchair company and finding out there was nothing we could do to ‘reboot’ it, we worked together to get race bibs, Captains and Angels organized and managed to get ourselves ready in time despite the hiccup!
As a result of our advanced planning, the My Team Triumph teams began the race just a few minutes ahead of the crowd at 6:28. This early start helps on a few levels. First of all, it brings a bit more awareness to the community of our existence and the work that we do to help facilitate accessibility in the racing community. Secondly, it allows us to start at our own pace and allows the non-wheelchair athletes to pass us safely and efficiently instead of forcing us to duck and weave through the crowd.
We went off with the starting gun only to realize almost immediately that one of the chairs had a mechanical issue. We stopped to help sort it out and then got back on our way. They flew past us, and we (who haven’t been training much this spring due to the ubiquitous ‘life’) decided to take it slow and steady.
Unfortunately we don’t have our official race time (there seems to have been a glitch in the system) but even with the mechanical issue and an error in my timing (I forgot to turn off my timer when we crossed the line for a few minutes) we ended up coming in at a 6:02/km pace, so 1 hour and 1 minute. My guess is that we were actually closer to 55 minutes, but either way, faster than a lot of our 10K’s last year, and MUCH faster than our 10K’s two years ago – I’d say that’s not bad for no training!