Race summary: Night race which is a change of pace, mostly flat course through neighborhoods except for crossing a long bridge going over the freeway, decent course support and spectators. Free beer at the end!
My friend KP over in Davis asked me if I wanted to do this race with her and her friend. I had never done a night race before and thought it might be fun. Since the summers are so incredibly hot in Sacramento in the summers, a nice race seemed like maybe a good idea. While the days are hot in Sacramento, it usually does cool off overnight (though sometimes it doesn’t start feeling cool until well past midnight). The race’s name would make you think you’re running late at night, but in reality the race started around 7 pm (still daylight at race start).
I liked that they had a same day race packet/t-shirt pickup. This was at the start of the race. The race is held on the eastern side of Davis – most commonly known for its university (University of California, Davis). The race start/finish and other fun things were on the DMG Mori Campus (I guess it is some manufacturing company). I arrived about 90 minutes before the race start. I picked up my shirt and bib and returned to my car to put away the shirt. I met up with KP and her friend and we just hung out until the race. The people estimated to take longer than 2.5 hours actually started the race 30 minutes before we did. So we watched them start. At race start, the temperature was still in the mid-upper 70s. This is way too hot than I like but I figured since the sun would be setting within the next hour, it should cool off considerably. This race was unique because we ran over a freeway bridge to get to the south side of highway 80 and run around south Davis. The course mostly took us through various neighborhoods (with one section of a paved path through heavily wooded areas). We ran the first half of the race south of the 80 and then re-crossed the 80 back to the north side. By this time it was almost dark and there were volunteers handing out some glow necklaces. This was a nice touch since many of us didn’t actually carry flashlights or headlights and at least made us somewhat visible.
Because I’m not used to doing a race at night, or running for distance in the evening, my body was a bit confused as to what I was doing. Luckily I was running with KP (we had left her friend behind as she was struggling to maintain a good pace and told us to just go on without her) and its always easier to run when you have a friend to run with. Around mile 10, there was a random person on the course handing out orange slices and this definitely helped as the temperatures still hovered in the low 70s and it was hot.
The last half mile took us through a field near the DMG building and this is where it was a bit treacherous as there was no street lighting and we couldn’t really see where we were placing our feet. I was a bit concerned I may land in a pot hole incorrectly and sprain my ankle. I was relying a bit on nearby runners who actually did have flash lights. I luckily made it through with no injuries and powered to the end.
Final chip time: 2:13:16
At the finish, I had my free beer (why else do you do races, right?) and also half of KP’s beer since she wasn’t feeling it after the race. The race medal was cool because it’s the largest one I’ve had. It also glows in the dark.