Kassel Marathon 2012
It was again a great week-end in Germany for the group of the club's endurance section who joined the annual trip to Kassel for the city's marathon and half-Marathon. Although there were only four marathon runners this year, the team spirit was top with lots of memorable moments.
The group flew out on Friday and returned Monday. The organiser of this annual trip, Stefan Schumacher, then hired a car and paced down the autobahn in terrifying speed-what else do you expect with a Schumacher!? Family Mintz was great as ever and John and Stefan stayed at Reinhard's which also worked out perfect. There was a big article on Carl Cleghorn in the local news paper, titled "An Exotic Runner in Kassel" and really praising him! The lady journalist who wrote the article did not forgot mentioning that Carl is single and has no kids! This obviously inspired a load of fiery Frauleins in Kassel and the other four were actually quite surprised to find Carl alone on the return flight and not settling down with a Fraeulein, Beer and a Sausage!
Again, the run was very warm, if not too warm! The injured Stefan did a great job cycling with the runners and giving them as much support as possible. His commitment was great, especially after the bike from Reinhard broke down at10k. Stefan then rushed to a young lady asking her for her bike. As she understandably was a little reluctant, he took a deep breath and then said that she might know his name through the local news paper that he was actually the team doctor of Sale Harriers Manchester and he must have her bike! She immediately handed over!
All runners struggled in the heat, Carl fared best of all and confirmed his superb form by finishing in 3:26.17. Behind him was Tim Rainey who struggled at the beginning and then got better as the race went on, even overtaking Paul Benstead in the finish who was far ahead of him at one point. Tim finished in 3:56.48 and Paul a very good 3:57.46 considering this was only his third marathon and he's only started running! Stefan was delighted that Tim 'sorted' Paul as the evening before, he was the only Brit cheering Chelsea and even shouting to Stefan while running one word: "Schweinsteiger"! Like the others, John Battersby felt the effects of the very difficult Manchester marathon three weeks earlier and had difficulties with his feet and calves. Stefan kept a very watchful eye on him on the last miles and John then finished in 4:01.12 Sale Harriers runners weren't the only sufferers. Reinhard, who ran the half marathon and doing very well was suddenly hit by a torn calf muscle and sadly had to pull out at 15k.
The pains and memories were well soothed later in the evening in the Bavarian beer garden! Superb weather and plenty of fab beer!
Sale Harriers are very popular and most welcomed for this fantastic annual weekend of the Kassel Marathon & Half-Marathon. Next year, Stefan looks forward to again organizing a trip and with even more runners next year.
Posted 29/05/2012 09:15