I came to Dewey Beach last weekend with one goal — win my age group in the Bottle & Cork Ten-Miler. I’d run this race twice before, and came in second place in my age group both times.
I’m proud to say that I accomplished my mission! I had the perfect race. Plus, it was a great way for me to pre-game for the Rehoboth Marathon!
This race, in its 41st year in Dewey Beach, Delaware, is part of the Dewey Beach Ten Sisters Road Race series. It’s an extremely flat course, but it’s often quite hot the day of the race. When I ran the race in 2014, it was 90 degrees and humid and I finished in 1:24 — not bad at all considering it felt like I was running on the face of the sun.
This year? 1:13:27 — a full two minutes faster than my A10 time two weeks ago. With an average 7:21 pace, it was a PR in a huge way.
And look, I love hot weather, but I don’t necessarily love running in it. Saturday’s temperatures in the 60s, with no humidity, were just right.
As I mentioned, the course, which begins right in the heart of Dewey, is almost entirely flat. Runners start by running down Coastal Highway into neighboring Rehoboth Beach. After running miles 2-5 through Rehoboth and Henlopen Acres, where there are a few small rolling hills, runners get on the Rehoboth Boardwalk. The boardwalk is exactly a mile long, and while it’s one of my favorite places to hang out when I’m on vacation at the beach, it’s honestly the worst part of this race! The sun is beating down on you the whole time, and you’re weaving around people who are out for their morning stroll. I’m glad it’s only a mile.
Then runners exit the boardwalk, run around Silver Lake (one of the prettiest parts of Rehoboth!) and through the neighborhoods around the lake, then head back toward Dewey. You spend the last two miles of the race running around the residential part of Dewey before getting to the finish line on the Rehoboth Bay.
I remember looking down at my Garmin and seeing that I’d run eight miles in just under and hour, and it was then that I knew I was going to PR. Just before I turned the corner to run past the Bottle & Cork and down to the finish line, I saw two friends waiting on the sidelines calling my name. I was dead tired, but knew I couldn’t slow down then! I high-fived them, screamed “I’M GONNA PR!” and sprinted to the finish.
I had a strong feeling I came in first in my age group, and I was so happy that I did! I got a finisher’s medal, and a beer stein for the first place finish. For my previous second place finishes, I’d received a wine glass and another beer stein, so I’m building up quite the collection of Bottle & Cork drinkware. (I put it to good use, trust me.)
The race also coincides with an annual girls trip, so I was in Dewey with a big group of women. Let’s just say I celebrated heartily after my victory, and leave it at that! 😉
The Delaware shore is one of my very favorite places in the world, and it’s such a pleasure to race there. I cannot wait until the Rehoboth Marathon! 79 days to go!