The Malden Irish American Road Race has been going on for many years.
Originally this race was a half marathon and over the years has evolved to it’s current format of a 5K and 10K.
2019 was my fourth or fifth running of The Malden Irish American 10K. I always run the 10K when given the option. Both races were only $25, so it’s hard to beat.
Running The Malden Irish American Road Race 10K
The race is just over a mile from my house so I did my warm up run on the way over. It was warm at 9AM and I was sweaty when I arrived at the club.
The hall was pretty empty and I managed to pick up my number and shirt in no time at all. A few of my friends from the Melrose Running Club were milling around and I managed to speak with just about everyone.
They moved the race up to 10AM this year because it was so hot last year. Around 9:45 we headed for the start line. Most people didn’t seem to know where it was.
As we stood there waiting a guy playing bag pipes walked around the corner. He didn’t play the National Anthem or anything and I didn’t see him again.
Without even a count down the race started at 10AM.
I ran down Malden Street with a few friends but started to move ahead when we got onto The Fellsway.
We had several police officers on motorcycles and an entire lane of the Fellsway for the race. With room to move, I got into a comfortable pace and started thinking about the hills coming up.
Soon after we crossed Pleasant Street in Malden the first hill began. I started running on my toes and increased my cadence. Surprisingly, I began to pass a few people.
As we ran up The Fellsway to the first turn the incline continued. We hit mile one just after the pond and I was happy with an 8:13 pace.
I was happy to hit the turn onto Highland Ave and hit some downhill. Soon we turned onto Maple Street and hit Mile Two at 7:52.
As we ran along I tried not to run too fast. I knew that I was running with 5K runners and didn’t want to try and keep up with them.
At the corner of Charles and Pearl Street the 10K runners went strait and the 5K runners turned right. The two guys I had been running with turned right. Figures!
Soon we hit a water stop and I grabbed a cup. I planned to hit each water station just to be on the safe side.
Malden Irish American 10K
It was now just us 10K runners. There was a gap between me and the people in front of me, and no one seemed very close behind me.
As we ran down Pearl Street there were a few people out cheering us on, which was nice. Remarkably, I also managed to pass a few people.
At the end of Pearl we took a left onto Medford Street and hit Mile Three at 7:55. My average pace was now 8:00 which was much better than I had expected. Then we took a quick right onto Commercial Street.
Commercial seems to go on forever and has very little shade. It’s just a long slog. About half way down this street we saw the lead men heading back.
The first place guy was way out front and there was also a big gap between second and third place and between the pack.
I began to count runners just for fun. By the time I got to the turn just before the Revere Beach Parkway overpass, I counted 28 people in front of me.
As I made the turn I grabbed a drink at the water stop and the guy in front of me did not. He was a bit in front of me but I knew at that point that I would pass him.
I maintained my pace and noticed that his hair was dark and thick. Maybe I couldn’t overtake this young whiper snapper!
I had to be patient because I didn’t have any juice for a surge to overtake him. Eventually both of us passed a guy who was in front of us!
We hit Mile Four just after the water stop and my mile was 8:19. I was slowing down on a flat road!
Finishing the 2019 Malden Irish American 10K
With 2.2 miles to go I knew I wasn’t going to pass many more runners. All I had to do was hold on and see what happened.
At Medford Street we took a right and went over The Malden River. Not much of a hill, but a definite incline.
Just after the bridge and before our turn onto Canal Street I hit Mile Five at 8:06.
Only 1.2 miles to go!
I felt pretty good, nothing hurt and I didn’t feel like I was going to die. Always a good thing!
Before we made the left onto Charles Street I finally passed the guy I had been chasing. I figured he would surge past me at the finish, but it was a psychological victory.
We were only on Charles for a half-mile but it seemed to go on forever! There were a few people cheering us on and plenty of volunteers to guide us.
When we turned onto West Street my watch said 5.86 miles. Maybe another half mile to go?
It was hard to tell. I was spot on at some mile markers and ran long at a few also. I thought we were close, but I couldn’t hear the announcer or the crowd.
I saw runners moving to the right side of the road, so I did also to try and get ahead of the turn. I was way early and went back to the left side of the road. Probably wasted 5 calories.
As we got close to the last turn to the finish I heard a few people calling out my name. As I made the turn I saw Judy Dolan with her phone out. I thought she might be taking pictures so I gave a thumbs up as I passed by.
I thought I might be close to a 50 minute race but wasn’t sure until I saw the race clock with 49 and change on it.
No one was near me so I pushed as hard as I could and crossed at 49:34! I was really happy with that finish.
It took me a few minutes to catch my breath. As I walked around I found the table where Melrose Running Club was hanging out. Regina Curran seemed surprised to see me.
It was nice of her to say that, but I really wasn’t that fast. I sat down and Regina asked her daughter to get some water for me. So nice of them.
After the Race
After I had my water I headed for the beer tent and handed over my two tickets. It was Bud Light but it actually tasted ok.
Surprise, surpise, everyone was near the beer tent! Mike Dolan had a good race and said he felt pretty good. Marty Hergert was happy with his run also.
They had results taped to the wall but only one page of 10K results. I found myself in 31st place on the sheet and was a bit surprised as I counted 26 people in front of me. No medals, big checks or new cars either way!
I was happy to run a 10K under an 8 minute pace.
96 people finished the 10K and 176 finished the 5K. A little light for a well established race like this. It was very hot last year so that may have kept some people away, even though they moved the start time up by an hour.
Top Melrose Running Club Finishes:
Lynda Field won her age group in the 10K.
Robert Bruzzese placed second in his age group in the 10K
In the 5K Rob Albers won his age group and Mike Dolan came in second in his age group.
Ava Curran came in third in her age group in the 5K
Run well my Friends and welcome to Fall!