Who would have thought that Peru would have such a fantastic series of races? On December 14th, I finished the KNK Classica de Navidad, a 21 kilometer event that went through the heart of miraflores, like the
99mediamarathon a few weeks before, the Classica de Navidad was a blast (although I could have done without the additional heat).
The course was two laps that started at the stadium of miraflores then followed the malecon de la marina past Larco Mar all the way out to the Via Expressa. From there, we meandered back up through the Ovalo de Miraflores, and then down Pardo until we got back to the starting point. This is the second time in two weeks that I’ve run up Larco, and, although in taxis and combis you wouldn’t notice, when you’re running you realize it’s all uphill.
Here’s a picture of the runners meandering around in the front courtyard of the Miraflores stadium. It’s a pretty neat facility. as you can see in the photo below taken from the inside:
As we waited around for the race to start, I kept thinking it’d be an awesome place to play football. As you can see from the photo below, the field overlooks the ocean (if the game is boring, I guess you can just watch the sea).
The powerade girls were there to hand us drinks after the event which was nice of them.
At the start I got all excited when they played the Peruvian national anthem and started singing along. It was only afterwards that I realized that I think I might have irritated a few people…it wasn’t my intention to be direspectful, I was just psyched up for the race (and I like the part in the national anthem where they say, “Largo tiempo! Largo tiempo!” So, I offer my apologies, although it wasn’t my intention to insult anyone, I can see how having some foreigner screaming “Largo tiempo!” throughout the whole national anthem could be annoying (I was just excited, that anthem always gets me all worked up!).
Here’s another picture from the start. Check out that joker in the front who noticed me taking a picture and decided to pose! Haha, I would have done the same thing.
As is my custom, I arranged for a beer pick-up to fuel my final charge into the stadium. Frankly, I don’t recommend most people drink beer during the race (it only works if you’re over 200lbs).
In the end, I finished this half-marathon in 2:07, five minutes faster than 99mediamarathon two weeks before! At that rate, I’ll be under 2 hours within my next one or two races (if the heat doesn’t kill me). So I was psyched, perhaps the long-forgotten days of youthful glory are not completely out of my reach like I so recently thought!
All in all, I think KNK did a pretty great job, although I would have liked water instead of powerade available on the course. When you’re doing running events in Lima, you should pretty much remember to carry a bottle of water with you (it gets hot!). The course was clearly marked and the traffic was controlled (although it did get a little hairy on Pardo from time to time). I’d definately do another KNK event and the fact that the proceeds from this race went to help out the children of Brena was just an added bonus, check out their webpage here for an events calendar.