For 4 years i beat this one guy like a borrowed mule, he would talk trash and i would toy with him, turn and smile at him just as i started my kick. i Turned our "races"into workouts sprinting hard then easing up so he would catch me then take off again, he was a total jerk and i was sick of his mouth so every time we ran i made sure it was a humiliating experience for him.
then my senior year i had been doing alot more sprinting and not much distance work, i had bronchitis so i had backed off.
ANYWAY i decided to hammer the first lap to make quick work of him, i was just starting to ease back as we broke for lanes and i see this guy fly by me
"Holy crap i went out 3 seconds too fast and this guy picks up the pace????!"
so i settle in behind him and just tried to hang in,
for the next 40 seconds i realized this guy had changed, he had put in his work he was looking strong, his form was better and i was in trouble because i had taken it too easy all week. he started pulling away in the last 150 meters, i could feel my legs tighten but then he stumbled
i realized he was in worse shape then me, i dug down found another gear and caught him at the line.
My team went crazy but i felt bad knowing this guy had done more work and probably deserved the win far more than i did. I went over to tell him he ran a good race & i was lucky to have won, when some vile comment came flying out of his mouth so i said something like "same old same old"
i felt bad about not being the bigger man and congratulating him on a race well run.
The next year we met in XC and i destryed him again, i really felt bad because his coach belittled the whole team after the race by leaving a large noose in the team area,because they were the favorites and they choked.
We couldn't believe that a coach could be so vicious to his own runners, it was embarrasing. I regret not having the balls to put competition aside and tell him he was a good runner and well respected by all of us. The look on those guys faces after running as hard as they could, coming up empty and then they go to get their warmups on and there is a huge noose laying across their duffel bags and gear. We were so shocked we didn't say a word to them.