The London Marathon
LONDON MARATHON & MIN-MARATHON
The weekend's London marathon was the culmination of a long winter's hard training for many that began in October with increasingly longer training miles and with period bench-marks of half-marathon and 20 mile races that gauged their progress towards the big day. They joined the colour, costumes and camaraderie of the world's most iconic race and battled the magical 26 miles 385 route with courage and commitment. The weather, the crowd and unique atmosphere favoured everybody
Anthony Ford, with a 2:17.16 marathon under his belt, from Berlin 2011, was one of the groups of Brit's who hoped to make the Olympic qualifying standard. He developed problems in the final stages and was forced to drop out. The elite women were also vying for Olympic qualifying standards and among them we had Sonia Samuels making her Marathon debut. Sonia's been a club stalwart for years with fantastic achievements under her belt most recently as the current 10000m National Champion and bronze medallist in this year's National Cross-country Championships. She ran side by side with Amy Whitehead (a former Sale Harrier) and, as ever, displayed fantastic talent and true grit to record a superb 2:33.41. Congratulations also to Amy who improved her PB by over a minute to 2:33.44.
Hayley Cavill had a fantastic run with a superb clocking of 3:09.52 that was almost ten minutes faster than her previous best and wasn't far off 'whipping' her ailing boyfriend Mike Ashby who was ten minutes down on what he wanted because of a lingering chest infection. Running his seventh London marathon his time of 3:01.46 was his slowest for five years. What a pity Amy Whitehead was not still a club member. With her, Sonia and Hayley the club would easily have won the English National Marathon Championships, something our senior women achieved about a decade ago.
The club's sub-three hours men this year were John Moseley (2:52.07) who aimed for about 2:50 and ran well balanced splits up to twenty miles when stomach problems forced a pit stop. Oliver Galliemin, though not quite as good as his PB of 2:56:21 in Amsterdam last October, was still happy considering how he'd struggled with plantar fasciitis through the winter. This was his 3rd 'London', the first being in 2008 when he clocked 3:23. M45 Gary Rowlinson ought to be very pleased with his 2:58.58. He went through half way just two minutes slower than at Wilmslow (79 minutes) which shows real potential for further improvement with preparation for the last miles of the gruelling marathon.
Ben Norman (3:08.31) was hoping to go under three hours but was probably over ambitious since he was hampered by an ankle/calf injury since March and his Wilmslow HM time was 1:29. He went through half in 1:30 feeling good, but his legs got very heavy from 18 miles.
Lee Woods also ran very well to clock 3:09:18 but could not match his previous sub 3 times of other years.
Stephen McCarron (3:13.14) describes his marathon as a 'horror story'. Still recovering from the viral infection that afflicted so many, he describes his body as 'giving up' about sixteen miles and a 'soul destroying' struggle to the finish.
Louise Robbins (3:26:31) clocked a PB by almost 17 minutes (Wow!). She wrote, "It felt hard work from about 8 miles, I went off a little too quickly which maybe I shouldn't have done so soon after a prolonged cold-flu but managed to keep the effort high and didn't lose too much time in last third of race ".
Helena Butler (3:28.56) is another who had a fantastic run, her first of two marathons in two weeks for her charity. She said, "My aim was 3:30 so I felt really good until about 18 miles when the fatigue started to set in. At 23 miles I had a band of supporters who screamed as I ran past which was a very welcome boost, but the last 4 miles required some serious concentration. I was totally delighted, coupled with exhaustion and overwhelming emotion.
L40 Joanna Robbins (3:33.53) also reaped from her winter with five minutes improvement on last year's VLM. Age notwithstanding, this should be a real incentive for Jo in a future Marathon.
James Lambe (3:36:53) ran his second fastest marathon. He planned to run between 3 and 3:10, and hit the splits for this up to nine miles. He got to halfway in a PB of 1:35 but from 19 miles he got muscle spasms and was offered a stretcher to the finish with 2:5 miles to go but heroically battled on.
Our ex-Olympian middle distance specialist Diane Modahl was way out of her comfort zone in opting to run her inaugural Marathon as a celebrity for her Diane Modahl Sports Foundation. She's certainly to be congratulated for completing the course in 4:23.50.
Last and certainly not least, and probably more deserving of her medal than anyone, was Liz Turner who completed the course in five hours.
Congratulations also to the club's four youngsters who had the experience, honour and thrill of being selected to represent their Borough & Region in the London mini-marathon that brought together the country's most talented youngsters. U15 Ciara Lydon, who was not originally selected for the NW but later stepped in, had a fantastic run over the three mile course to come 3rd for the NW out of the six girls selected. Well done also to U17 Megan Davies who also represented the NW and completed the course in just over eighteen minutes. U20 Ryan Moore finished 6th in his race beaten only by guys who are established National Schools Champions. His team-mate Chris Middleton in the same age-category, who'd normally expect to be 'right up there', was disappointed with his run.
Posted 25/04/2012 08:36