Damian "the red devil" Cowlishaw, reports from the Worksop Half Marathon:
Twas the night before Halloween (well, OK, a few nights before!)...
This was the 31st staging of the Worksop Halloween half marathon and it was yet again well attended by LERC. After 31 years of practice, this race goes on like an old pair of slippers: you just know all will be ok and it feels right.
It's not a flat course by any means, but it is enjoyable and scenic, with the start and finish situated in the town centre and with charity stalls and food wagons easily at hand. Once underway, the course soon rolls out onto an undulating road for about 4 miles before turning into Clumber Park which, at this time of year with all the Autumnal colours, is very pleasing to the eye. The route then goes through Worksop college and back down a fast downhill to the finish.
The weather for this year's race was spot on - not hot, not raining and not too cold. Considering the earlier weather forecast that predicted snow for the weekend, we got off very lightly indeed.
Many a PB was achieved on this challenging course, not least by Adam White, who was first home for LERC in 1:18.44 on his Worksop debut. Rob Allen was disappointed not to dip under 1:30, as he was an agonising:second away, but should still be proud of an excellent pb, while Rich Ferguson, fresh from his adventures at the Chicago Marathon also recorded a new lifetime best of 1:45:04. Cheryl Brown was first over the line of the LERC women, and she too achieved a PB of 1:42:52, while Carrie Chan went under 2hrs for the first time with a 1:58:31 clocking. Jane Newbold (2:00:46) and Laura Froggatt (2:06:56) just missed out on beating the 2hr mark, but showed plenty of promise for races to come as they too ran the fastest half marathons of their lives.
I also got into the "spirit" (get it? Halloween, "spirit") of the race, working, dressed as a devil, alongside Nathan "Skelitor" Barnett as Carrie Chan's pace maker and path maker!
Even more notable was Anthony Batty, alongside a friend from EVRC (who finished in front of Anthony and girlfriend Laura, who also runs for EVRC) who attempted a Guiness World Record for the fastest fruit/vegetable running a half marathon. The mark is "currant"ly (another joke there, "currant") 1h 37m, which appears to have easily been beaten.
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