Grand Prix 10 in the 2014/15 season took place at the Tunbridge Wells Half-Marathon. The race was also the club’s half-marathon championship.
A small but select group of 15 members took part in the race which starts in the centre of Tunbridge Wells. There was thick ice on the car windscreen and the thermometer registered -3.5 degrees when I set off but the sun was up and it promised to be lovely race conditions. It was easy to get parked near the start and the spaceous facilities made it easy to get registered and baggage dropped off. Dame Kelly Holmes started us off and we were away. The course is very scenic but it is undulating – one might even go as far as to describe it as hilly. However, the good thing is that you get the hard work out of the way during the first half of the race making for an easier and possibly quicker finish (if you haven’t completely died on the halfway hill). The course takes place on half closed roads and takes in a wide sweep of the Kent countryside before heading back to the town centre. There were lots of supporters lining the route and a number of bands – I particularly liked the jazz quartet at mile 5.
I had to depart fairly promptly at the end so I didn’t have a chance to speak to everyone but the general impression was that people had enjoyed the course and had recorded good times despite the undulations / hills. Special mentions to Alastair who finished 22nd overall and Libby who was 11th lady. There were several PBs, including Lawrence who reduced his by a massive 4 mins and promptly threw up on the finish line!
The race also served as the half marathon championship and the winners were as follows:
Senior Men: Alastair McGeoch-Williams
Veteran Men: John Matthews
Super-Vet Men: David Pimm
Senior Ladies: Libby Marchant
Veteran Ladies: Kirtstie Mitchell
Super-Vet Ladies: Uncontested