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<span style="font-family:'Times New Roman';"><span style="font-size:medium;">Starting at 4PM on New Year’s Eve, this was obviously my last run and RR of the year, so here’s the wrap-up:</span></span><br><br><span style="font-family:'Times New Roman';"><span style="font-size:medium;">Event: The 38th annual New Year’s Eve Family Fun Run on Belle Isle, a city park on an island in the Detroit River (sort of our equivalent of Central Park). In addition to the kids’ and walkers’ events, the major run is a 4-miler on roads around the island. This year there was a record field of 1500 runners.</span></span><br><br><span style="font-family:'Times New Roman';"><span style="font-size:medium;">FR: Not applicable for a winter event. Layers, with Brooks outerwear and Adrenaline ASR shoes.</span></span><br><br><span style="font-family:'Times New Roman';"><span style="font-size:medium;">The weather was nice for this time of year, with temperatures in the low 30s and mostly dry pavement. With a winter storm on its way for later that night (we had 10 inches of snow New Year’s morning!), it was a good chance for a fast run on a flat course. The starting venue was the old casino, designed by Albert Kahn and built during Detroit’s glory days of the 1920s. I had never been inside the place before, and it was really a beautiful building. Plus, thanks to Roger Penske (long story), there was plenty of paved parking space for the big turnout.</span></span><br><br><span style="font-family:'Times New Roman';"><span style="font-size:medium;">Belle Isle Casino:</span></span><br><img alt="" src="http://i273.photobucket.com/albums/jj214/gordonwd/Running/Casino.jpg" style="border:0px solid;"><br><br><span style="font-family:'Times New Roman';"><span style="font-size:medium;">I drove down with a couple of friends, but didn’t run with them during the race. I really wanted to run a fast time for this distance, so took right off at a sub-8 pace. The first leg of the course was particularly scenic, as we went around the fountain and toward the western tip of the island. At that point we were facing directly downriver, so we could see the Detroit skyline on the right, Windsor (Ontario) on the left, and the Ambassador Bridge barely visible through the haze in the distance.</span></span><br><br><span style="font-family:'Times New Roman';"><span style="font-size:medium;">Rounding the tip and heading upriver along the shoreline, I passed the first mile at 8:15 and was feeling strong. That stretch also brought back memories of running the Detroit Marathon several years ago: this was right about where the halfway timing mats were placed, and the start of about 6 or more lonely miles that we spent on the island.</span></span><br><br><span style="font-family:'Times New Roman';"><span style="font-size:medium;">The route then turned into the center of the island, past several more architectural landmarks: the conservatory, the maritime museum, the bell tower. The next two miles went by at sub-8:10s as we looped back toward the casino. I didn’t catch my time at the 5K mark, but I’m sure it was below my official PR. Finally, there was one final lap at the end of the island, then a turn onto the start-finish straight and across the line. My time was 32:37, for an 8:09 record pace for this (or any) distance.</span></span><br><br><span style="font-family:'Times New Roman';">Being a “fun run”, there were no individual times or age-group awards, but I did finish pretty well up in the field. Later, though, we decided that $28 was a pretty steep entry fee for a 4-mile run, some refreshments, and a long-sleeve t-shirt that I’ll probably never wear. We did manage to get a post-race snapshot, and the PR finale for 2007 made it worthwhile (that’s me on the right).</span><br><br><span style="font-family:'Times New Roman';"><img alt="" src="http://i273.photobucket.com/albums/jj214/gordonwd/Running/BelleIsle1.jpg" style="border:0px solid;"></span>
 

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Roch,<br>
Enjoyed your race report. Congrats on your fast pr pace. It's always good to feel "strong" during a race. The Casino is a beautiful building in the background. And it looks as cold as you said. brrr
 

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Roch... What a great way to cap off 2007!! "...<span style="font-family:'Times New Roman';"><span style="font-size:medium;">an 8:09 record pace for this (or any) distance" says it all!! Congratulations!!</span></span>
 

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Oh boy! I'd love to see the inside of that grand old casino. Glad you got a good fast run in before the snow hit -- great jump start for the new year!
 

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Roch, congratulations on finishing the year with a strong race.<br><br>
Your Forerunner knows what your 5K time was. I think SportTracks is much better for extracting information like this than the Garmin software.
 

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Great job! We visited this area when we were in Detroit a few years ago. It was one of the high points of the inner city, with Comerica Park being the biggie.
 

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Congrats on the PR Roch.<br>
Always nice to finish a year with our best.<br>
Hope 2008 finds you well and ready to hit the pavement.<br>
jjj
 

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Roch, if you hadn't lost focus reminiscing about the marathon, your time would have been even faster! <img alt="wink.gif" src="http://files.kickrunners.com/smilies/wink.gif"><br><br>
Great race and a grand finish to 2007. Thanks for the great pics too. Wishing you many more happy miles and kilometres in 2008.
 

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Nice running, Roch and great photos! You always seem consistent!
 

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Roch, I'm late to respond, but a hearty congrats on your race and fast PR pace. Also, may I add further congratulations on your very impressive year of running and a whole bunch of other PR's that I can't name because there are so many!<img alt="smile.gif" src="http://files.kickrunners.com/smilies/smile.gif"> Here's to another great running year!
 

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Great way to end the year and begin a new one! <img alt="smile.gif" src="http://files.kickrunners.com/smilies/smile.gif">
 
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