[I hosted episode 75 of RunnersRoundTable this afternoon, a kind of meandering discussion, with some ranting from me.]

About a year back I wrote a post extolling a track, the physical, lined oval, as an Oasis (complete with Haiku). Today saw me heading down to the Bronxville Track to do a tempo run. With a race on Saturday, intervals were out of the question, so I settled on what I hoped would be a not too taxing 20 minute tempo. I knew JT was doing 1000s and half-expected to see her.

Alas, although there was one woman on the track when I arrived, it was not her. So I ran the tempo — which went well — and it was just me and her for the first 13 laps, and I had the place to myself for the final lap. Julie appears to have arrived later. She writes:

I thought about this essay during my track session today as I dodged flying soccer and lacrosse balls, along with people sauntering into my path or otherwise annoying the shit out of me.The “this essay” is from Pete Magill, complaining of an adventure he had in Los Angeles searching for a track on which to work out. It is quite a fine read, and I recommend it.

Ah, the purpose of this post. Just a review of local tracks.

  • Bronxville: Pretty new. Inside lane is 380 so you aim to run in lane 4. BUT as JT notes, it can be hellish. Within 200 yards of the track are some of the nicest streets you’ll find anywhere. Yet people insist on walking around the track. Of course, they walk in Lane 1, thereby evidencing a lack of knowledge about the distance. There’s a sign saying not to walk in Lane 1, but it is ignored. Because Lane 4 is the go-to lane, though, it makes no difference about who’s in Lane 1. If it’s not too crowded, you can work out here. People tend to stay out of Lane 4 if you ask. I have, however, been called nasty things.
  • Scarsdale: Another new track. I’ve done speedwork here a couple of times, but it was summer. Andy of Westchester Road Runner told me, however, that he’s been hassled about not being a Scarsdale resident. I don’t need that aggravation, so I avoid it.
  • Mamaroneck: A square track. Generally OK except when there’s a baseball game on the infield, in which case people insist on sitting in lawn chairs in Lane 1. Polite requests to move sometimes work, but are often met with I’m-a-taxpayer indignation.
  • Pelham: Not in the best of shape. It’s a bit isolated, so doesn’t have the pedestrian traffic of, say, Bronxville. People have generally been polite about getting out of the inside lane.
  • White Plains: The best bet. This track is also isolated. I go here after work. Two-years old, Mondo. There’s a fence around the infield. People have been OK about clearing Lane 1. Westchester Track Club’s “recreational” runners convene here on Wednesday nights, and some of them are clueless about staying out of Lane 1 or keeping together when they’re running. But if you get there early, you’ll be done not long after they begin.
  • Mount Vernon: I’d love to run on this track, which is half a mile from home and brand new. But it’s locked.