Photos are here:
BEFORE MY START: My 35th race of 2021 was the Loteria 5K held on Sep 18 at 6 PM in McAllister Park, San Antonio. Put on by iaap, a local race management company, this event is based on a Mexican card game and several participants dress up in costumes representing the characters on the cards. There was also a Kids Run. This was my 2nd 5K of the day after having done the Oktoberfest Beer Garden 5K in the morning. I arrived at the park with about 40 minutes to go to start time, got my packet and then took a few photos before we got started.
ON THE COURSE: The course was an out-and-back on one of the park’s paved roads and one of its off-road paved trails. After a fairly hilly 5K done in the morning, I decided I would just take it easy for this one and do positive splits for each mile, instead of negative splits, and just have fun with it. I ended up doing most of the course with a friend, Bob, whom I had not seen in quite a while, so that was a nice bonus for this event. Everything went according to plan, with me doing Mile 1 in 12:28; Mile 2 in 13:22; and Mile 3 in 13:53. The last part of the course, Bob and I ran in together to the finish line. I did not expect to place, but I ended up 3rd in my age group, probably because there were only 3 in my age group, lol. My friend Bob was second in our age group. Other than the occasional hot-flash – my wife calls it poetic justice, lol – not having many side-effects from the treatment I am getting right now for prostate cancer, so I was pretty comfortable for the majority of the route.
AFTER MY FINISH: Pretty warm out in Texas summer at 6 PM, so found some shade – which is abundant in this park, thank goodness, and just sat for a bit, drinking my post-race drink and cooling down a bit. Then I wandered around chatting with friends and taking a few ‘after’ photos. There also was a costume contest and then a few door prizes were given away – none of which I got, darn the luck. After that, time to go home and get off my feet and just ‘veggie” in front of the TV – watching college football – and let my old-dog body really get a rest.
Epilogue: iaap events are really good quality ones and Race Director Ceci does quite a good job getting everything organized. Iaap is a family business and the whole family gets everything done pretty smoothly. This was a fairly small event but very well done. Nice course, nice quality race shirts and unique ‘painted’ age group awards with Loteria characters on them. My 3rd place award was a mermaid, which was appropriate because after this race I was ‘finis”. Post-race goodies included beer and chicken tacos – or maybe it was fajitas, I forget – from the excellent local company Kiolbassa. Race shirt of very nice quality. I’ve done Loteria in the past; will do it again; and would recommend it to others.
MUCHO THANKS TO: all the iaap folks, race volunteers, sponsors, and the park police that were out there for our safety; and to anyone else I may not have mentioned here.