Greater Manchester Marathon - 2nd April 2017

John WittonAfter keeping a careful eye on the weather all week, I was very relieved to see the forecast predicted conditions were going to be perfect for the marathon on Sunday, writes John Witton. I travelled to the start using the Metrolink and it was chilly at 7:15 before the sun was properly up, but the skies were clear with just a smattering of cloud and, importantly, no wind.

The race was very well organised with marshals directing runners to the bag drop area from the Metrolink and clear signposting. After dropping my bag, I made my way to start area B to start warming up, bumping into Andrew Milne on the way. It was great to see Ron Hill interviewed,Ron Hill interview who later started the race. Amazing that this year he finished a 52-year streak of running every single day!

Dan Witt found me at the start and we set off together at the signal, shuffling our way over the start line before breaking into a run. I had a pace range I wanted to stay within to try to achieve my target of sub 3 hours and, with excellent crowd support, wide, traffic free roads and excellent marshalling, I managed to stick to the lower end of it (4 min per km) for the first 20 miles. I felt comfortable up to this point and was buoyed by the support of my family at 9 and 16 miles, but the last 6 miles got tough. My pace slipped to 4:15 per km but I managed to hold on, and was delighted when the finish came into sight. The finishing straight was very long, however, and didn’t seem to be getting any nearer as I pushed myself to maintain my pace. It really started to hurt in the final few metres and I could feel the first twinges of cramp in my thighs, but I made it over the line in a time of 2:51:46, which I was ecstatic with.

I was nearly sick after the finish, due to the gels I’d consumed, but I managed to recover and by the time I'd collected my medal and goody bag, pint of alcohol-free beer and my bag from the bag drop, I felt fine. It was great to see my family at the meeting point and we all went for a celebratory lunch before I met Dan for a couple of pints.

It was a really enjoyable, well-organised race, on a superb flat course with excellent crowd support and we were very lucky with the weather.

The SAC results were:


The full results are here.

Paddock Wood Half Marathon - 2nd April 2017

James Graham

 James Graham was first M60 as twenty Sevenoaks AC runners completed the Paddock Wood Half on 2nd April. The event was also the Kent County AA Long Course Veterans Championship race, so James is the M60 County Champion. In bright and breezy conditions, Matthew Walker was the first SAC runner home, while Claire Edwards was our first lady. The SAC results were as follows:

Place Time Name Team Cat Num Chip Grade
131 1:23:31 Matthew Walker Sevenoaks AC Senior Men 2217 1:23:23 72.74
142 1:24:22 Keith Dowson Sevenoaks AC Vet Men 50-59 1880 1:24:19 80.73
157 1:25:47 Andy Ashlee Sevenoaks AC Vet Men 40-49 1309 1:25:36 75.07
164 1:26:09 James Graham Sevenoaks AC Vet Men 60-69 1186 1:26:01 85.87
167 1:26:17 Nick Humphrey-Taylor Sevenoaks AC Vet Men 40-49 1995 1:26:04 72.98
190 1:27:41 John Stevens Sevenoaks AC Vet Men 50-59 2365 1:27:33 78.33
226 1:28:44 Steve Williams Sevenoaks AC Vet Men 50-59 673 1:28:23 74.28
265 1:30:02 Keith Brown Sevenoaks AC Vet Men 40-49 1804 1:29:52 70.46
380 1:34:45 Chris Desmond Sevenoaks AC Vet Men 50-59 1983 1:34:39 71.89
383 1:34:55 David Lobley Sevenoaks AC Vet Men 50-59 1322 1:33:50 70.01
395 1:35:10 Michael Lochead Sevenoaks AC Senior Men 2527 1:34:43 62.67
451 1:37:08 Andrew Evans Sevenoaks AC Vet Men 40-49 2045 1:37:01 65.80
505 1:39:30 Simon Hallpike Sevenoaks AC Vet Men 60-69 1163 1:39:01 75.11
616 1:42:53 Allan McPherson Sevenoaks AC Senior Men 205 1:42:29 57.98
641 1:43:42 Claire Edwards Sevenoaks AC Vet Ladies 35-44 466 1:43:18 64.16
671 1:44:25 Gabriela Mladenova Sevenoaks AC Senior Ladies 2096 1:43:13 63.01
892 1:51:01 Jane Morgan Sevenoaks AC Vet Ladies 35-44 304 1:50:01 60.88
923 1:51:38 Paul Smith Sevenoaks AC Vet Men 50-59 2414 1:50:45 61.52
1765 2:19:56 Lionel Stielow Sevenoaks AC Vet Men 60-69 758 2:18:22 55.78
1967 2:30:38 Ronald Denney Sevenoaks AC Vet Men 70+ 65 2:28:34 61.08

The full results are here.

SAC Handicap 26 March 2017

Ted ScottTed Scott comfortably won the March handicap race from Heather Fitzmaurice in bright and blustery conditions.

Keith Dowson ran the fastest time while Heather was the fastest woman.

The series still lacks consistent challengers after three races.

All the details are here.

Hastings Half Marathon - 19th March 2017

Grace at HastingsJohn Stevens was first M55 at the Hastings Half Marathon on 19th March. Grace Manzotti was also running - the only other SAC runner at the event - and she provided the following report:

"Grace Manzotti and John Stevens ran the 33rd Hastings Half Marathon. Hastings is very hilly, the first half is pretty much all uphill and then there areHastings Medal 2017 more hills in the second half too, but you then it goes down to the sea front and the last 2.5 miles are on the sea front which is lovely. Well today there was a very strong headwind by the sea front and it slowed me right down. I had to put my head down and run to the to the finish, still I am very pleased with my time as I got a PB, I ran 3 minutes faster than last time. I think this race is hard but I would recommend it, the crowd support is amazing, everybody is out cheering us on. And there are lots of bands around the course, today they had a Dolly Parton tribute act on the seafront, which took my mind off the wind. You get a brass instead of a medal and this years brass is lovely it celebrates the reopening of the Hastings Pier after it caught fire in 2010."

The duo's results were as follows:



The full results are here.