I'm not surprised the race sold out once again. It was as friendly and well-supported as ever, with brilliant, encouraging marshals at every turn. The friendliness did not extend to the bloated Chelsea Tractor occupant in the petrol station just before Bong's Road, who blared horn and mouth at being inconvenienced by a few hundred more energetic souls than she who happened to be crossing her path. The policeman put her in her place. You never know, she might have enjoyed the spectacle in the end and been encouraged to have a go herself one day soon. It would certainly improve her profile. I think I just saw a pig fly past.....
The outcome was quite good (at least by my standards). It's a hilly course. My time of 1:17:27 was a PB for the third consecutive year and in five completions since 2004. I finished 277th out of 686 finishers (comfortable top half). Advancing years and niggling injuries do not have to be a barrier to PBs, although the time between them may be longer (only 6 this year compared with 18 last year). The winner, a certain Matthew Clowes from Staffordshire Moorlands AC, blazed round the course in 0:50:34(!)
With acknowledgement to Mark Alwyne, the bottom of Bong's Road (at around 4 miles) provided a cool photographic location.
I just received my race number today, three days after the race. The envelope had not been franked. I was one of several hundred who did not receive their numbers and had to get a replacement on the morning of the race. Something smells fishy.