As part of my ‘5k every weekend’ training plan I decided to enter into the very competitive quite unique Derby Days 5k in Arcadia, CA. This race includes a flattish PR friendly course, incredible talent and some of the most scenic views in all of California. The race starts off by running through the fabled Santa Anita Race Track (the home of Seasbiscuit), wanders through the bucolic streets of Arcadia and then funnels us into the Los Angeles County Arboretum. For those of you that remember the TV series “Fantasy Island” – this is where much of it was filmed. Mr. Roarke’s house is actually the ‘Queen Anne’s Cottage’ in the middle of the arboretum. Peacocks abound in this gorgeous park and their odd squawks can be heard from quite a distance. After our tour of fantasy land we are dumped back out onto the streets of Arcadia and eventually onto the soft deep sand of the race track itself. We run two ‘furlongs’ (how long is a furlong anyways?) on the track and then finish to all kinds of hooplah. It’s a race I highly recommend both for the views and the celebration that ensues.
The course, field and scenery teamed up to help me set a new 5k PR. Mission accomplished.