If the 25 of us had just pushed ourselves that little bit more, we would have won. All we needed was to run one second each faster and the prize would have been ours. We would have held high the red wellies (size two-and-a-half) and proudly paraded them in front of the losers. But we were the losers by just 19 seconds, we had to watch the parade. Damn.
Of course it was all a bit of fun, the girls entered the fourth annual girls against boys Red Welly Relay two-one up. Each runner had a 200m section of the 5km Leeds Hyde Park parkrun to sprint handing over the baton, one half of a pair of red wellies, in homage to the statue of the Duke of Wellington guarding the park entrance. Some wag had painted his greaves red and left him a traffic cone helmet set at a jaunty angle, the Traffic Cone Relay didn’t seem appropriate, so red wellies it was.
The race was handicapped. Using clever maths our parkrun times were added, multiplied and the number first thought of subtracted. The result was the girls set off four minutes before the boys. I was number 11, and by the time I took hold of the red welly and semi-sprinted, the boys were hot on my heels. They overtook round about number 23, I think, but I have been known to make things up!
I got back to witness the boys’ triumph, they won by 19 seconds. We congratulated them of course, promising that next year, we’d wop ’em… Personally, I’m starting my training programme now!