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We’ve got you, mile for mile for Shelter Island’s 10K

Shelter Island returns to offering a world-class 10K race this Saturday. Join with the thousands to make this back-to-normal race special. The 10 Km (6.1 miles) course is a perfect summary of the “faces” that Shelter Island offers.

Even if you’re not on the course, you can do your part by cheering the runners.

Given the 5:30 p.m. start, lead runners will be running at around 5 minutes per mile, and the pack of runners will be doing around 10 minutes per mile. You can calculate the best schedule for your special runner. 

Here’s a summary of each mile based on personal experience:

First mile  A preview of the whole race — downhills flats, and hills. Be cautious, the first quarter-mile is downhill when the runners are pumped and the crowds loud. If you run too fast here, you will pay on the hills to come.

Second Mile Hills and more hills. The second mile starts with a hill and then drops you onto the longest and steepest downhill grade — Tut’s Hill. Then comes the toughest and most complex hill you will face. Take each of the four sections of Cobbett’s hills one at a time.

Third Mile Endless. Passing the Fire Station, you enter a gentle downhill portion before making the right turn on to Manhanset. This should be the easiest race section, but the lack of spectators and the quiet Dering Harbor woods make this mile very long.

Fourth Mile: Magnificent. Wow, Shelter Island’s gold coast. The fourth mile is flat and benefits from the enthusiasm of Dering Harbor people cheering you on. Caution — don’t be tempted to accept the cocktails. 

Fifth Mile: Tough love. Starts with two small but challenging hills. Then it winds over Second Bridge and up to the last major hill (whew!) to Route 114. This hill is unique because it’s straight as an arrow. Don’t be demoralized by looking at where you must go. Keep focused, and you’ll get there.

Sixth Mile: Killer. The sixth mile begins at a water stop — do take advantage — then you make a jog to put you on Midway and you’re headed for Home. The wall of flags will inspire you. Near the end, there are two hills that should be nothing except at this point any hill is big. A left on Bateman and quick right brings you into Fiske Field.

Finish: It’s only a quarter mile away. Beware, this is the longest quarter mile you will run because you cannot see the finish line until the last turn. You worked hard to get this far, and you will soon be rewarded. Our race has amazing post-race refreshments.

Keep Walking: If you don’t feel right, don’t hide it. The race has the best medical team primed and ready to help.

43rd Annual Shelter Island 10K Run/5K Run/Walk

• Saturday, June 18

• 10K runners start at 5:30 outside Shelter Island School

• 5K Run/Walk starts at 5:50 p.m.

• Bus transportation from four stops available via Hampton Jitney from Manhattan, Roslyn, Huntington and Farmingville