Having held over my London Marathon place from last year, I volunteered to help at this year’s Brighton Marathon as fortnight earlier as, although I am told I sometimes lack commonsense, I would not attempt to run two marathons in two weeks. I belong to the BOSH running group on facebook and I put a message on their site, offering accommodation to any runner, male or female, who was running in the event. A lady contacted me and she and her friend stayed the night before the race, so I had to be up early to get them to the start well before 9.15am.
Having left them as close to Preston Park as the road closures would allow, I returned to Madeira Drive to get my instructions at the Volunteer tent. However, although there was an earlier 10k race, there really wasn’t much to do until the finishers in the marathon started coming through. I was allocated the job of providing foil blankets, which proved far more fiddly than it may appear, as each one is individually wrapped in a plastic bag that has to be discarded – in a refuse sack, of course – before the blanket is unravelled and put round the runner’s shoulders.
It was quite hard work, particularly at the peak finishing time of between 4 and 4.5 hours, but what struck me was the monumental effort that people had put in – not possibly as evident amongst the very elite group, but even some of the sub-3 hour finishers were staggering around after crossing the finish line. Not so however our Andy, who appeared remarkably fresh, despite coming in under 3 hours – quite an emotional moment. In fact the pervading feeling was of emotion, as people had pushed themselves to the very limit and some were too tired even to speak, let alone unravel a foil blanket themselves!
The results and photos appear below, but many congratulations are also due to Ilidia, Simon and Colin for all winning their individual battles and not only starting, but finishing.
Andy Massingale – 2:58:22
Ilidia Campbell – 4:12:26 (Pacer for 4:15)
Marcus Dwyer – 4:12:26
Simon Funnell – 4:56 (chip problem at finish so timed from watch)
Colin Clegg – 5:35:04
Note that both Simon and Colin slowed to assist another runner! Just saying
Note also – if I missed you let me know – I can’t search by Club so have only found people I KNOW ran!