Spencer C. Duncan Make it Count 5k After Action Report

Updated: Oct 30

Before we dive into the report, our thoughts, prayers, well wishes, and happy juju go out to the runner who went down during today’s race. We had a runner down, receiving medical attention, and leaving via ambulance this morning. Whoever that runner was, we hope they are doing alright. Best wishes from the Back of the Pack Podcast.


This morning was the Spencer C. Duncan Make it Count 5k. This course looked so familiar to me. Where had I seen it before? Oh yeah, the last race we did was the same exact course! The race took place out at New Century airfield in Gardner, KS. The same location as the Gardner PD Law Dog 5k/10k that we did back in July. It was hard for me to fathom that I had not raced in almost a month. With vacations and traveling, it had been four weeks in between races. Crazy.


This morning was even more unforgiving though. It was HOT! Race temps started in the mid 80’s. There was a breeze which was nice. Humidity was a little lower than normal. The sun was shining in full effect. Even with the 7:30am start time, it was still a toasty race!


This was my first time doing this race, so I cannot speak to the normal turnout. I felt as though this had to be a great turnout for this race though. It was a packed house out there to be sure. This was a heavy military presence type of race. There was even a pre-race flyover by a very impressive military helicopter that got the crowd very excited.


The course was exactly what I had run in the race prior. Nothing new and different. Racing at New Century is nice if you like courses that are flatter than pancakes. This one definitely qualifies as flat. You are out on a road surrounded by an airport and industrial’ish buildings. There is no shade to be found. There are no trees lining the course. You will soak up every bit of rays the sun decides to give you. With the first mile and a half of the race with the wind in your face and the sun on your shoulders, there was no relief. It was a tough slog the whole way.


After you make the turn to head back the last mile and a half, the wind wasn’t in your face, so that was nice. I have noticed though that a wind at your back, does not have the same feel as the wind to your front. There was no relief, no breeze, nothing to cool your body. The last half of this race was just you and the sun beating excessively down upon you. It was nasty hot. No shade, no relief, have I mentioned this before? Sounds familiar.


My training over the last month has stunk. Injuries have hit me hard. My time for this race was not what I wanted for such a flat course. I like this race though. I hope to go back next year and do a little better. The volunteers were solid and the race is well organized. There’s a finishing shirt, bib, and a few swag giveaways from vendors with tents out, but there are no medals. I get it though, you want more money to the charity. Makes sense, but we all like our medals.


Overall it was a good morning. My knee was the only one complaining. If you sign up for a race in August, you know that heat is going to be an issue. Make sure you hydrate before the race. Slather on your sunscreen, and get yourself a Saturday morning 5k under your belt! A good morning for pounding some pavement. Until our next starting stripe my friends.