One of my goals for Spring Break is to firm up some arrangements for our summer trip to Ireland. Dad has traced his lineage back to an ancestor who emigrated to the U.S. in 1865, so this trip is kind of a pilgrimage to the motherland.

On a whim, I poked around to see what kind of races might be happening during our two weeks in Ireland. I was thinking something like a fun 5K in Dublin, but we’re not there on a weekend. Eventually I found one in the town of Kildare (population: 8,142), famous for its thoroughbred farms. Their four-race event (marathon, half-marathon, 10K, and 5K) will be held on Father’s Day–the day we’d be heading right past the town. It required almost no rearranging to make it work.

So I did something kind of crazy: I signed up for the half-marathon.


I also signed up Dad and B for the 5K.

I found a room at a hotel near the race start, and once I knew we had somewhere to stay, I decided to go for it–to be a chancer. I will have run the Cleveland half a month before, so training won’t be an issue. It also doesn’t hurt that it’s inexpensive (€25), it starts at 10:30 in the morning, and the weather will almost certainly be cool by my standards. And of course there’s a medal!

The race coincides with the town’s Derby Festival, so I decided that afterwards we’ll enjoy a festive day in small-town Ireland. I even arranged a second night at the hotel so we don’t have to rush back after the race. After all, aren’t those the kinds of experiences you look for when you travel?

I’ve never run an international race before, so I’m excited. Got any advice for me? Leave me a comment!


3 thoughts on “Chancer

  1. Thanks! I just looked up race results from last year to give myself an idea of how many people ran it…. yarg, only like 240 people ran the half, and only one person finished slower than my half-marathon PR time….. Guess I’ve gotta step up my training so I’m not last!


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