Abingdon Marathon – 18.10.15

1200 had signed up for this way back in April and it was full within a few days. However only c750 were on the start line on the track at Tisley Track today. So as it was officially a 5 hr time limit event, most of the 1200 (and the 750) would have been sub 5 hrs runners. So now you see why it was a very lonely 2 lapper for many of us at the rear end!
So on a cold but dry day Sheila Johnson and I set off at 0900 hrs on closed roads, on tracks trough lovely wooded and lake areas then into Abingdon where Dave Johnson was armed with camera as he sped round some of the course on his bike. Thanks for the encouragement Dave.
The 2 laps are not identical but are scenic except for the “twice round the Business Park” bits that blew your mind to pieces with boredom. At least they were traffic free on a Sunday but that was all you could say about them. Finally at the end of lap 2 came the 23 mile mark so just a jog back through Abingdon to the race track at Tisley and what a welcome for me. Sheila and Dave hooted me in and the announcer screamed at me for a sprint finish as (apparently) I did the very 1st Abingdon in 1982 and every one since except in ’87. No one else has done more than me he said. Oh how I remember those 3.25 days at Abingdon. Nice touch as I overtook someone on the track (probably only the 4th person I had overtaken since the start).
But the real heroin was our very own Sheila who had a great run-not sure what she was on but can I have some for next Sat’s Snowdonia marathon please SJ?
Great event, fantastic support all round, very cheerful marshals, medal, goodie bag and T shirt. In fact there were so many (400+) spare T shirts left over that Sheila and I had 2 and Dave was given one. Wear them with pride I say.
Massey times:
Sheila Johnson: 4.25
Dave Phillips 5.16: (took a wrong turn and ended up down a cul de sac and I thought I knew the course backwards). Easy to do when you are on your own so I deducted a couple of mins off my official time-hope no one objects!!)
Lesley Keighley: DNS-cried off. Get better soon.

Race report by Dave Phillips.