The start was a bit different this year due to some work going on near the pier, so we were led up half a mile or so to the start en masse. It was so busy and we were so far back we didn’t hear any actual start, we just crossed some timing mats and were off.
There were obviously a lot more people than there had been in previous years, possibly due to better weather meaning fewer non-starters, but it was a bit messy as a result. There were a few bits where we had to stop and wait, especially at the kissing gate about 10 miles in where we were queueing for a few minutes and in danger of being in the way of the leaders coming back.
We weren’t especially arsed about it as we weren’t running for a time or places, but it would have been really annoying if we had.
The rest of the race was pretty uneventful, just nattering and plodding along. We were diverted away from the final beach crossing as the tide was in which took us through some pretty uninspiring residential areas, but apart from that the route was fine and in pretty good condition compared to previous years.
We had a bit left for a final push and crossed the line in 4:02 which was fine, Dan was pretty knackered and I wasn’t much better. I don’t think I felt any less wiped out than if I’d run 3:20, but then I’m not in great shape right now anyway. We headed back into the Pyramids to stretch and warm up a bit which was great, but there was no free soup this year which sucked.
As a day out it was great, decent weather and a nice long run with Dan was great, but as a race it felt like it had gone downhill a bit from last year. There were way too many people on the course, the medal was a bit flimsy compared to last year’s nice chunky one, and no free grub at the end sucked – the thought of a nice warm cup of soup was keeping me going for the last mile or so.
It’s hard to get too down on it though, next up is 24 laps of Orrell…