Race Recap: Sunderland 10k 2024

A week after the Newcastle-Gateshead 10k, on 12th May, I was racing again – in Sunderland this time. This is the second year in a row I’ve doubled up on these 10ks and I almost certainly won’t be doing it again next year. My spring 2025 A race will be the Edinburgh Half Marathon at the end of May and so I’ll be trying to avoid filling up my training block with too many fast 10k efforts!

It was a nice morning out as I was travelling to and from the race with several other Benchies on the Metro. I always like Sunderland as I always get a PB there – it does have a few small hills but I find it to be a fast course with a good start and not too much congestion once you get into it.

As this is an Events of the North race, Steve Cram is the race director, and just wanders around in his hi-vis doing all the normal race director stuff on the day. Runners unfamiliar with the race are often a bit taken aback by this and a bit starstruck – you hear a lot of audible gasps of recognition when he comes down to lead the runners out to the start line!

We started relatively close to the front and I was able to get away in a fairly speedy manner on the heels of the fast laddies. My first couple of miles were too fast – 7:20ish min mile pace – and I ended up doing a 5k PB at the halfway split, which is never a good thing in a 10k! I faded pretty hard but held on as much as I could for the second half, managing to get over the line in 48:57 official time. (My watch said 49:03 and I thought ‘ahhh, next time’… but then I got the results text a few seconds later!) That’s a 37-second PB following the North Tyneside 10k in March, so I was really happy!

Sunderland 10k
Club photo at the finish.

I have two more races during this training block – the 5.8-mile Blaydon Race (tomorrow as of this writing!) and the Great North 10k in early July. I’ll give them my best shot (in particular, Sunderland has given me the confidence to go for it and try and take a full 10 minutes off my Blaydon time from last year), but even if I don’t get another PB at the GN10k, I think I can still be pretty happy with a sub-49 for this season. We’ll see what happens.

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