The pain and the glory
THREE top athletes represented North Herts Road Runners in the elite women s race of the London Marathon. Natasha Pitman, Melissa Winters and Jane Chappell lined up with the world s best in Greenwich Park on Sunday morning. Natasha was the first to finish
THREE top athletes represented North Herts Road Runners in the elite women's race of the London Marathon.
Natasha Pitman, Melissa Winters and Jane Chappell lined up with the world's best in Greenwich Park on Sunday morning.
Natasha was the first to finish for the Squirrels in 88th place in a time of 3:05:51. Melissa (120th) and Jane (153rd) crossed the line in 3:10:16 and 3:15:09 respectively.
The club was well represented in the mass start race later in the day. Richard Thackery was the first from the club to reach the Mall in 3:08. Mark Young and Stewart Bryant battled hard over the last few miles to dip just under their 3:15:00 target times - Mark finished in 3:14:10 and Stewart in 3:14:38 - Chris Walby (3:23:58), John Russell (3:26:10), Claire Messenger (3:28:16) and Mike Mello (3:42:13) were next to reach the finish.
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A number of others from the club took part, some breaking records in the process. Susan Foot (3:49:40) set a new ladies' V50 record while Chris Priestly (3:47:41) recorded a record in the men's V55 age group. David Benson completed his first marathon in 4:41:16 and Ronald Cohen was 11th in the men's V75 age group, completing the course in 5:01:22.
Other times for North Herts Road Runners were: Lysa Ralph - 3:43:52, Anne Callis - 4:03:04, Paul Bowal - 4:15:06, Rachel Annetts - 4:35:08, Lindsay Cook - 4:43:46, Vanessa Rolfe - 4:57:47.
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# A KNEE injury and blisters failed to stop Matt Wallis from completing the London Marathon on Sunday.
And he vowed after the 26.2-mile run: "Never again."
Matt, 28, of Old School Close, Codicote, finished the course in 5:53:18.
"I was OK for the first 15 miles then both knees went," he said. "I also had blisters from eight miles but I wasn't going to give up."
Until Matt started training for the marathon, he hated running and had not run since his school days. And managing to go the distance has not converted him.
"I will never do a marathon again. Absolutely never," said Matt on Monday.
So far Matt has raised £3,325 for Marie Cure Cancer Care, smashing his target of £2,500. He is taking in donations at his fundraising website www.justgiving.com/mariecuriemarathon for the next two months.
The race was difficult, says Matt, but the crowd and other runners helped him finish it.
"The crowd was great and all the runners encourage each other. I was running with one of the rhinos for a while and ran with Floella Benjamin for a bit, which was bizarre as I last saw her on TV when I was eight years old.