#284-85 - Saxon Shore Marathon Double Race Report

No facebook postings at all as this really wasn't about me at all!


The Saxon-Shore Marathons are organised by myself, so probably rather tricky to be remotely objective about them! I did have much umming and errring about if I should run them, or just help out at base camp. The route is 4 ups and downs of the Saxon Shore Way at the North end of Deal. I like this kind of layout as it gives everyone the chance to see everybody else (in this case 8 times) whilst retaining some of the logistical advantages of looped courses. i.e. consistent aid station, car parked close to start/finish, can leave gear/drinks/food behind and any supporters can see runners multiple times without going to too much trouble. It really was a last minute call in both cases to do the runs, mainly as we were lucky to have a couple of extra hands to help out at the base station and I do like to check up on folk out on the course, pick up the odd bit of litter and generally make sure that everything is going OK.


Saturday was pretty bright, unfortunately it was also pretty windy! Was forecast to be about 20-22mph from the North and it was, straight in to runners faces for the the outward parts, and it was pretty cold to say the least. We were there some two hours before the race start to get setup, the new gazebo wasn't much of a success as although it did stay up for a while, it did eventually blow over!

I try to set these things off on time and managed to get us underway about on the mark of 0800 (I like them early!) and the first lap is a short loop of local streets just to make the distance correct and rather than try to explain (which has failed in past years) or have folk on the four corners (which is tricky with a small band of helpers) I decided this year (thank you improved speed!) that I would simply be pace bunny and just have everyone follow me. So I started a few paces ahead and set off like a hare and that seemed to work well.

Not too much to say about my run really, my clock time was 4:25, but that probably included 20-25 minutes of standing chatting to folks at the turn around (thank you Roger!) and the base camp (thank you Rachel, Elanor, janet & Teresa!) just making sure everything was going OK, plus a few slow downs and chats on the course, first 13/14 miles was decent tempo, 1:55 or so but then just trotting around mainly. Didn't get any warmer I must say!

The day was rather put in perspective when we got home as there was a chap collapsed on the road, we tried to help out as much as we could and eventually left when the third ambulance showed up as nothing we could do but sadly learnt later on he'd died. Rather ironically his wife said he'd had a full medical two days before and passed with flying colours, but he just literally just keeled over and died.

Sunday was colder but the breeze had dropped significantly. Really was a much more pleasant day for everyone, those who had just chosen the Sunday hopefully went out and bought a lottery ticket! From a run perspective it was always my intention to be the back marker today (and would have gone back out again on Saturday but someone else went out to check on the back marker) so basically just ran the first loop fairly hard and then more or less walked the rest. Did one loop with a girl called Kate who was doing her first double and then the third with a girl called Claire, who likewise was doing her first and struggling rather with knee problems. Made sure I was well back for the last loop and basically just picked up litter, which thankfully there was very little. Official time was 6:30 odd but didn't matter in the slightest. Everybody seemed to enjoy the weekend, lots of nice things on Facebook and I ate my body weight in goodies! (Thank you Rachel, May, Heather, Brian and Emily!)

Things I Learnt

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