*Mal Preece (*right) had a great run at LondoMixed emotions for Road Runners at the London Marathon..plus other race results.
Special report by Don Hale.
There were mixed emotions for several members of the North Wales Road Running team who tackled the varied challenges of the ever-popular London Marathon last Sunday as heavy rain and damp conditions caused a few problems for the 49,000 mixed ability entrants.
Cramp and fatigue unfortunately played a role in the performances of several key athletes, and yet most still enjoyed the occasion, and the tremendous atmosphere and support provided by tens of thousands of supporters who cheered on the runners around some of London’s most famous landmarks.
Martin Green celebrated his hard preparatory work for this race with a tremendous run finishing in 152nd place in 2 hours 30 minutes and 43 seconds, and he also claimed the 3rd spot in his MV45 age category, leading home a team of nine fellow club runners.
Martin Green at the Mid-
*Martin Green (*above) put in another tremendous performance in London.
Despite braving the changing weather conditions many athletes still gained some personal best (PB) times and remain hopeful of ‘good for age’ results for potential future marathons in the Capital.
Josh Keogh was another North Wales athlete on top form, and he too had an excellent run finishing 836th in 2.43.21. Mal Preece claimed a superb new PB of 3.28.45 (8,203), and Charlotte-Rose Wilton-Jones was another runner on fire, and she too claimed a marathon PB in 3.37.02 (10,475).
*Josh Keogh (*above left) with Charlotte-Rose Wilton Jones.
Steve Mason, however, was a key member of the team who suffered badly from cramp and lost a lot of time whilst trying to tackle his ongoing problems. Despite all this, Steve still recorded a very good result finishing in 3.43.16 (12,284).
Helen Hannam was another PB winner (30,368) in 4.41.29, and Kelly-Marie Alford successfully survived her marathon challenge, and even wore a charity costume, as part of her impressive fundraising plan. Despite running in the Manchester Marathon last week, Kelly still ran home in 5.21.31 (39,642).
Meanwhile, Rachel Morris successfully overcame a host of problems during her London Marathon preparations, including a broken leg, to eventually triumph, with a great time of 5.27.38 (40,686), with Cai Roberts – another Manchester marathoner - finishing well in 5.40.40 (42,628).
Reaction to the marathon: After the race several NWRRC runners gave their personal impressions about this unique race.
Mal Preece confirmed: “I was on for sub 3:15 at 20 miles but died at 20 with a 1:05 final 10k. Still a massive new PB time of 3.28.45. The bonus is I’ve managed to get a GFA time for next year. What a fabulous experience the crowds were awesome.”
And Steve Mason told of some of his problems with cramp, saying: “I hated it. I had to walk the last part of the race after suffering the worst cramp I’ve ever had in my life. I was about ten minutes slower and had to spend some time in the St John’s Ambulance tent with cramp.”
Helen Hannam said: “My PB smashed. It was so emotional, what an amazing experience.”
Kelly-Marie Alford added: “That was so hard. I really did not enjoy it! I still had the Manchester Marathon in my legs.”
Rachel Morris though, earned the top plaudits for her bravery and determination to complete her marathon challenge. She explained: “I got my London place in 2020 through the ballot then covid hit. Once we could train again, I ended up breaking my leg whilst training, and have suffered injury after injury.
“I wasn’t hopeful today, and thought I’d get about 7-hours, but I completely surprised myself and got 5.23. I ran in my dad’s clubs top that he ran in when he ran the London marathon. I really enjoyed the whole day. The crowd was so supportive and it’s true what they say about them carrying you through.”
Other race results: -
*Magaluf, Spain: Kevin Higgins finished in 2 hours 11 minutes and 28 seconds in the Maguluf half-marathon race last Sunday. Afterwards Kevin said: “Very hot conditions but I was happy with my time.”
*Kevin Higgins (*above) at the Magaluf half-marathon.
*London Docks: Steve Mason ran in the Victoria Dock parkrun last weekend amidst more than 700 athletes in preparation for his London Marathon race and finished in 186th place in 24.25. *Coed y Brenin: Lesley Goodson took part in the Goldrush Trail race last Saturday