I ran Johnny’s 3 years ago, but haven’t had a chance to run it since. The course has changed a bit, but it is still a flat fast course with good competition. 3 years ago I finished in 17th place with a time of 28:05. I managed to drop 1 minute off my time this year, but that only moved me up 5 spots to 12th place.
With the 5k Hospice run gone, Johnny’s is now the second most competitive race in the Rochester area, trailing only the Bergen 5k. Johnny’s may be as competitive 1-5 but nothing can come close to Bergen’s overall depth (it takes a sub 16 minute performance just to crack the top 25). As you can see in the video above, Stotan Racing made the trip out from Syracuse and dominated the race from the gun. They may have gotten quickly away from me, but I had plenty of people to race with all 5 miles including Roadkill teammates Brett, Kenny, Matt and Joe.
I have to give a special thanks to Derrick Jones, who said while passing me shortly after mile 1 “come with us” and so I did, for another mile anyway. I was settling in to a comfortable pace but he reminded me it was a race and that motivated me to keep pushing the whole way.
I think I might have been frustrating Brett with my pacing. I kept speeding up and slowing down as I teetered on the brink an aerobic cliff, I’m sure he would have prefered it if I ran steady so he could draft off me on the way back into the wind.
The last mile of the race I felt like I was running at a dead sprint trying to chase down Kenny and break away from the pack of runners I knew was behind me. While I was unable to makeup any ground, I was able to hold off the 6 runners within striking distance.
My time of 27:06 is my 3rd fastest ever for a 5 mile race and my fastest for a certified course (although my PR is on a long course). I won my age group and a bottle of wine plus I picked up 3 points in the RROY standings. Hopefully I don’t need to use this as one of my top 6 races for the series, but that is largely going to depend on who decides to show up at the rest of the race in the series.