Banbury 15 – 20.3.16

Banbury 15, 20/03/16.

Race report by Dave Phillips.

Well they described this as a hard and hilly event but how wrong they were. It was very hard and extremely hilly and a real toughie. Hilly at Banbury? I hear you say. If you go down the M40 Banbury is on your right and very flat. But the run is mostly on the left hand side of the M40 and is very hilly. The only thing connected to Banbury was the start and finish at the Leisure Centre close to the M40.

300 took part and entries on the day were accepted (thankfully) and what a superbly organised event it was so well done Banbury Harriers and the marshals.

At the 2 mile mark we crossed a road and went back on ourselves and it gave me chance to look behind me. No one in sight. Oh gawd this will be lonely-and it was. The 3rd week running that I’ve experienced “the loneliness of the long distance runner” but at least it gave me chance to sort out undisturbed the tax and accounts problems for next week.

So I plodded on, and remorselessly  on, but what a stunning scenic and almost traffic free route it was. Quite glad to be out there despite the hills.

Gradually the 10 mile mark came into view and then the 12 and we were now back on the outward route so the sights became familiar.

Then 14 came along and a final mile dash to the finish in the park made it all worthwhile and by now the sun was out but still cold.

Pauline and Guiliano who I met at the start also flew the Red and Whites but that was the last I saw of them, but just having checked the results they were almost within sight. Well almost maybe on a good day!

Nice medal and a cup for all finishers but what a great cup. It was in memory of a Banbury runner Geoff Smith and was inscribed Geoff Smith Memorial 20th March 2016. Think I remember Geoff so I really am glad I went. A real souvenir and collectors’ item. Thanks Geoff. And a picture of Geoff in running gear was inscribed on the cup. Nice touch.

Massey times:

Pauline Czyewska 2.42.51 290th

Guiliano Ellena 2.42.51 291st

Dave Phillips 3.00.28 297th

300 finished (a few dropped out and I saw some trudging back to Banbury after just 3 miles).