The season of Irish-themed road races is upon us and on March 5th it was off to New Bedford, Massachusetts for the Ireland 5K. This race is a flat course in the seaport district of New Bedford and starts a few yards away from Slainte Irish Pub which puts on a great post-race party for runners.
Race day weather had a rather typical March chill in the air but the wind was definitely a force to contend with. For this out and back 5K course, the wind wasn’t noticeably at your back on the first half of the race but was intense in the last mile of the run as you made your way into the whipping winds coming off the ocean. In the final stretch of the race running between two buildings it felt as though you were running in quicksand so the legs had to kick even harder to ensure a strong finish.
The race is very well organized and is hosted by former two-time Boston Marathon winner Geoff Smith who with his fellow race director ensure the race goes off without a hitch. With some water on the course, police and volunteers patrolling the turns and Irish music playing at the start helping to keep runners warm and moving, the Ireland 5K is a great race for runners to tackle annually.
I finished the Ireland 5K with a time of 24:59, good for 8:03/miles.