Race Recap: Baker Hughes 10K

My Jog Scotland Thursday running group

My Jog Scotland Thursday running group

On Sunday I took part in what I think is really the only race actually in Aberdeen: the Baker Hughes 10K. A description of the race:

The course is based around Aberdeen beach and harbour area and has some spectacular views of the North Sea and the famous Beach Ballroom on the route. The race started as a marathon and in 1987 changed to a 10K which it has been ever since with a number of different courses.

It’s kind of funny because Aberdeen was trying to get a marathon this summer, that got pushed back to next summer, which got shot down. But now that I’ve run the 10K, there’s a lot left to be desired in a marathon or half marathon. I can definitely say I wouldn’t be signing up had it gone through…

On to the recap!

Cost

£22 pounds for me, £24 for E. I got a £2 discount for being a Jog Scotland member. In Conversion, this is pretty close to a standard “big” race in Chicago…but for that price in Chicago you generally get a pretty good t-shirt, a beer, and some carbs. But I’ll get into all those specifics later….that being said I felt it was a little steep. The Aviemore Half Marathon and 10k for a few quid more and the Fare Challenge 10K for a quid less….and those are all much more scenic, and I know at least the latter has better swag and goodies. C

Registration

I’m not sure what they’ve done in the past…but I know this year was new for them. They were shipping everyone their race tshirt and bib #. I’m not totally sure if they did that before and this year they just used a different carrier this system? Or if the whole thing was new. I LOVE the idea. I hate taking a trip and paying for parking just for packet pickup. Unfortunately- there was an issue. I never received my packet. It was kinda strange since E got his and I registered us both under the same ticket. They sent out an email saying there were issues, but assuring everyone would get their bibs by Saturday, but just in case…you could get a new # the day of. Well of course mine never came. Besides that, it seems a lot of people got crumbled balls for bibs…hope their chip still worked.

So on race day we headed down extra early to deal with whatever incompetence await to get a new bib. It was actually very seamless, and they updated my info ASAP because I still got a text after the race with time result of my new bib number. So a slight fumble, but overall it worked out just fine. And I was the only person I knew (out of about 20 running) that didn’t get their bib. I’ll let this one slide. A-

Parking

Because of aforementioned missing bib, we arrived super early and got to park on a street (free on Sunday) before the roads were closed. If you didn’t get there super early before the roads were closed, you were pretty much screwed. I mean, if you know parking in Aberdeen, you know it sucks. This is no exception. We actually drove our friends and their kids back to their car that was parked all the way across town….good for them as it started pouring and they would have had a miserable 30 min walk with wee ones. C

Bathrooms

I thought there were plenty of port-o-potties when I needed em. Again, I was really early and got in two nervous poos without anyone even in a port-o-pottie near me. Then I had to wee right before the race…and there was this epically long line for the bathrooms. It was huge. And it seems everyone was just standing there waiting in one line for the 2-3 potties in front of them?! What was that? Normal protocol is a new line every 2-3 potties. I just walked through this line and went to the far end and went wee. It sounds like I’m a jerk…but I’m telling you there people at the front of the line couldn’t even see those potties because they were in a L shape. But that massive line was so weird….I imagine if everyone lined up like normal runners I might have had to wait 2-3 minutes. But not really my problem. I guess maybe they need some potty marshals? But I can only say my personal experience was A+ no wait.

Timing

On the bib, just how I like it. I’m really confused because I know at the 5K mark I ran over a timer…and yet they are not posting your 5K times….odd. A-

Course

Only picture I grabbed of the course.  Big sky, eh?

Only picture I grabbed of the course. Big sky, eh?

Ehhhh. Aberdeen is not a gorgeous city. No offense, but you’re not going to walk downtown and fall in love with Aberdeen. Fall in love in Scotland- yes. Not so much actual Aberdeen. So they made a race trying to utilize a pretty bit- the long stretch along the beach. Unfortunately you have to add on at the front and end running around what seems to be Section 8 housing and seedy harbor businesses. And even when you’re running along the beach…on your other side is Pizza Hut and ASDA (Walmart for those not in the know). I mean, I can’t really fault them. It’s the only race in actual Aberdeen and they worked with what they had. Oh but that hill at the end blows. B

Goodiebag

Well there was a tech shirt. But they only offered men’s sizes and the front is completely white (weirdest thing ever). From the ones of the past I’ve seen, it seems every year is white. They need to shake it up. And really- too cheap to have something printed on the front? Now I understand why everyone at run club on Thursday was gushing over my Chicago Spring Half Marathon shirt. When you crossed the finish line you got a bag with some pantene shampoo samples, some paper, and a tea bag. You could grab a water bottle and a thing of concentrated water flavorer. No bananas. No bagles. No dry toast even. CIMG_2169

Competitors

It was my {new} hometown so I knew quite a few people there. Only one situation wasn’t great when turning a corner and a man was pretty aggressive with his arm up and shoving me over. Seemed a little unnecessary at 1K in buddy. A-

Medals

You got one! People wear them! Again, if it’s your thing- it’s there. I did like the pop of color and the date engraved on the back though.

Time

57:47 – a personal best I think? And again, I’m so damn fat. Must lose this weight. And further more- great considering my hip is still buggered up and I have only run 4x (most 5 miles) since the marathon.

Would I run it again? Um, maybe. I guess probably. I do like big races and this is the biggest I’ve experienced in Scotland with 3,900 runners (I know Edinburgh and Glasgow have large races- just saying.) But it’s really nothing to write home about – it’s a race. It forced me to lace up my trainers probably much sooner than I would have post marathon so for that, I am thankful.

Me and E pre-race

Me and E pre-race

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