Running Perth was always going to be a big call as it was only one week after Christchurch. Craig and I flew from Sydney to Perth via Melbourne on the Saturday, going straight to the bib pickup point from the airport. We had a quick walk around the city and then had a nice dinner at the hotel.
The event started in the park near the casino and we caught a taxi there from our hotel. Craig had exams the week after and had his books to continue studying while I was running. The course was two laps, following the river. It was beautiful.
I encountered issues with my right hip flexors about 4km into the run. I knew straight away this wasn’t a good sign! My pace slowed from the usual 5:30 per kilometre to over 6 minutes/km, and I was anxious that I was feeling this bad so early on. Knowing the course was lapping back on itself I concentrated on finding people to chat with and encourage as it would distract me from unhelpful and negative thoughts. My search however was largely fruitless – few people were up for a chat and in fact few people responded to the encouragement. There seemed to be lots of music in ears so I guess maybe they were just focussed and didn’t hear me.
One highlight of the run was seeing Steve Moneghetti pacing the 3:30 group. Not often you see a legend running by!
In retrospect too I recognise that I saw Simon, also a Marathon Maniac during the run. We didn’t meet properly until Adelaide some weeks later, but I do remember the shirt going past. Richard whom I later met in Uluru, was also in Perth, being a local, but he would have been miles in front of me that day!
Finishing the marathon was an excellent feeling. I knew despite being slower than normal that knocking over two marathons in quick succession was always going to be hard, and I’d done it.
I’d arranged a local tour operator to take us on a half day tour that same afternoon, and we ended the day at a seaside restaurant recommended by a friend.
The next morning we had an early flight home. We spent some time in the Qantas lounge at Perth, surrounded initially by more hi-vis workwear than one would see in a King Gee store. It was all the people waiting for their early flights to Karratha! On the final leg home from Melbourne the display on the plane read the destination was Singapore! Photographed that and sent to Emily. Her response was priceless!!
Perth Marathon was number 15.