The City-Pier-City (CPC) run has come of age. Once an intimate local race that allowed Dutch talent to shine, this year’s 35th anniversary was the sight of an international showdown. World Marathon record holder Haile Gabrselassie came to The Hague hoping to recapture the world record for the half marathon which he lost to Samuel Wanjiru at the 2007 CPC.

Although the intense international attention shown to the race this year because of the world class runners participating was exciting, the CPC is ultimately just a local race defined by its intimate feel. In addition half marathon, the CPC includes 1 and 2.5 k races in which local schools participate, and the 10k race, which I ran. In January thousands of people resolve to train for the 10k and seemingly every area health club offers training sessions to help its members meet this goal. There are also innumerable running groups formed at offices, through running stores and of course, the more formal running clubs offering similar support.

My daughters were signed up to run with their school. Miss V ran the 1k, and Miss P, although signed up for the 2.5 k was feeling under the weather and didn’t run. I ran the 10k despite the less than stellar weather. I saw a couple of friends before the race who were both shocked to see me because they know my rule about (not) running outside if the weather is not fabulous. And honestly, had it started to drizzle 10 before the race as opposed to 10 minutes after, I would have stayed true to this rule.

1’00″58 later I crossed the finish line, missing my goal of completing the race in under an hour by less than a minute. Haile Gebrselassie also missed his goal. Looks like the challenge has been set for year’s race.