Viking Way Ultra
Mark Cockbain decided some time ago to establish an ultramarathon which was tough and he certainly acheived that! On the morning of Easter Saturday 27 runners, inc 3 women, set out for 147 miles of Humberside and Lincolnshire trail – the Viking Way from Barton to Oakham. I was helping out at checkpoints and it nicely coincided with me running the Hull marathon on the Sunday. As I arrived on the Friday I almost wished I was running not helping – though that didn’t last long; avoiding injury before my US trip has to take precedent. Plus the 40 hour cut off and self-navigation made it a very tough ask and of those signed up were some very impressive running CVs! The weather was overcast and drizzly and there was none of the warm spring-like weather we’d had a couple of weeks before, not bad running weather if a little cold. The checkpoints were meant to be minimal but there was actually more at them than the runners had been forewarned of. Mark had even splashed out on ‘beef and ham’ meat paste, yes 2 meats in one jar. There are some good race reports from those who ran – Neil Bryant, who was joint winner with Pat Robbins in a staggering time of 29:22; Mimi Anderson who was the 1st Woman and 3rd overall in a good time of 33:52; Chris Rainbows 35:00; Charlie Sharpe 36:23; Paul Dickens 37:28 and Andy Horsley 39:45 made up the 7 finishers. Also some others I’m pretty sure will be back next year: Jo Kilkenny and Lindley Chambers. I really enjoyed helping out and seeing some great performances, I might be tempted to run it next year (if I forget that I hate night running again…).
Hull Marathon, 8th April 2012
The inaugral Hull marathon needed much better thought and I wasn’t the only one who thought so. No mile markers, poor signage and a route that wiggled so much round a narrow path in the docks that it was hard not to bump into people on the return route! A 8am start on Easter Sunday led to poor support and few marshals. The ’1st’ woman actually only did about 23 miles as she missed a turn. Despite all this I actually had a good run – intending to do a 3:30 I set off a bit quick but kept it up; and was 4th Lady (3rd on the 26.2 miles) in 3:19:56, a pb by 9 seconds! I felt strong and pretty good at the end which was good as…
Kent Road Runner ‘Tester’ Marathon, 9th April 2012
To get back-to-back road marathons into my legs I decided to run the tester event that Ian Berry and Sandra Bowers had organised ahead of the real marathon on June 4th, when I’ll be somewhere in Washington State. So about 20 of us lined up at 9am for 17 laps of a cyclopark in north Kent in drizzle and gusty winds was the recovery run in store. I wore an old jacket for a couple of laps until I warmed up – and never did so finished still wearing it! A little hillier than I’d expected it was tough going but I got round (and round and round…) the mini F1 track in 3:53:30 which wasn’t bad and I was pleased the legs felt no worse at the end than after 3 laps, though I slowed a lot towards the end. The Easter egg finisher’s gift lasted about 10 minute on the drive home, my GB rubber duck sits proudly by the bath.