A week on from the London marathon and what a change of conditions. Don and I sheltered from the wind and rain in the Slug and Lettuce with a cappuccino. At 10.30 we decided it was time to brave the elements to cheer on our friends. First to appear was Gavin looking very confident well in front of the 3.30 pacer. Amanda came springing along ten minutes later and Sharon not far behind both looking very happy and positive. Geoff was leading his daughter and they were well within their predicted time. When it got to the 2 ¼ hour mark and Angie and Clare hadn’t passed we surmised that they hadn’t started or maybe they were heavily in disguise.
I was supporting a friend running for the Christie. Her request for paracetamol at this 11 mile marker did not bode well.
A short trip on the metro took us to Stretford where it was easy to find a viewing spot near the finish. By this time it had stopped raining but we marched up and down the road to keep the circulation going – it was incredibly cold.
The first WRC runner was Sharon who as she passed us at 26 miles knew that she had made a fantastic pb. Gavin didn’t look so happy, his pace had dropped dramatically but at least he was nearly home. A number of ambulances full of hypothermic runners dodged between those dragging themselves along to the finish. Verity Gilbert was letting Dad lead her in. Geoff has definite potential as a pacer! No sign of Amanda. We had a brilliant view of the finishers. How could we both have missed her.
The runners started to thin out now as time was ticking on past the 6 hours mark. We squelched our way across to the Christie tent hoping to find our friend but alas she wasn’t there. After a reviving cup of tea we hopefully returned to the finish where by now the finishers were scarce. Just as we were getting very worried a call summoned us back to the Christie tent where poor Geli was being revived. Unfortunately her wheels had come off and she had had to return by a series of ambulances and buses!
What a day! I take my hat off to all the runners running in such appalling conditions. As for us spectators we needed a hot bath and probably a new pair of shoes!