This is a new event in the Southeast race calendar which John Rivers and I were running with charity places from Macmillan Cancer Care, and it has a good ‘big event’ feel
to it with plenty of spectators lining the route cheering and calling out our names.
Getting there is a piece of cake from Faversham. We jumped on the 06:52 to Victoria and then tubed three stops, hopping off at Temple, (although Embankment would have been closer!)
ahead of a 600m walk (that’s from Embankment) to Trafalgar Square and The Mall where the bag drop off and pre-race toilets complete with customary queues were located.
As it’s name suggests, the course takes runners past a good many old and interesting elements of the cityscape, mainly wasted on me however because I’m a bit of an eyes forward,
head in the zone, type of runner. We were treated to a variety of bands and choirs en route and a couple of drumming troupes, one of which was stationed under an overpass creating
a deeply atmospheric vibe in the air with accompanying rich and loud acoustics. Also, one of the churches was delivering a wonderful street-filling peal that echoed between the buildings
for hundreds of metres.
My race was marred slightly by a muscle injury I’d picked up five days previously on a long Brighton Marathon training run, and, unusually I had a couple of minor bouts of stitch - all
of which no doubt sounds like the excuse I need to explain my non sub 2hr performance! John on the other hand had a good day at the office winning himself a 1:58 time.
Prior to the starting horn he’d been fretting as getting fit for a half wasn’t in his schedule, with a John o’Groats to Lands End cycle ride less than six weeks away!
Out of 9,647 finishers my 2:02 time took me over the line in 3,398th position.
I’ve pre-registered for next year’s event but a note on their website hints that it’s not a given that it’ll go ahead. Presumably the organisers are being subjected to a post
event grilling by the relevant authorities before their licence is reissued. The provisional date is March 24 - pop it in your diary - it’s a big day out without the huge
preparation required for a full marathon.