Weston-super-Mare half was super

The inaugural Weston-super-Mare half marathon ran today (24/03/19) in the brilliant spring sunshine.

It was almost as if the warm, bright sun was ordered especially to herald in this race which snaked in and out of this popular seaside town.

Usually with first time events there are teething problems but I have to say Weston was almost incident free.

The bag drop was seamless – but then the local scouts looked after the taking in and handing back of bags so it’s no surprise it was organised so slickly.  Every marshal I came across was more than courteous, in fact they were very friendly, chatty and supportive.  The views of the now famous “new” Weston pier, the coastline and sea, and the very typical British seaside landscape of large hotels, fish and chip shops (they have so many) and pubs were all welcome as you ran the 13.1 miles.

Downside?  Only one – not enough toilets but no doubt that lesson will be learnt for next year.

The route – the blurb said it was flat.  To quote a fellow Strider “Flat my ar*e!”  Yes, the seafront and beach – yes we even ran a couple of miles across the sand – was flat.  But the rest of the route was undulating – in fact in places down right hilly!  But as one volunteer said to me at the end this is Somerset – she had a point.

The route was very pretty – out of the town to the village of Uphill – guess what, that was hilly – and back and then out the other end and up and down some more hills.

The legs were aching by the end but the finish was worth it – back along the seafront and then on to the pier to finish.  Well if you’re going to run a seaside race – the pier needs to feature.

So 10 out of 10 for Weston – I loved it and so did my fellow Striders who ran with me.

Here’s to next year’s race – one I would compete in again.  And let’s hope the sun shines again to make it another super sunny Weston-super-Mare half.

The Bath Half.

Tomorrow a number of Striders will be lining up in Bath for what is a major half marathon in the regional racing calendar.

The route for me is not inspiring – effectively two loops leading you out of the city and, albeit a flat route, the relatively small amount of supporters you see once you are out of the city doesn’t help.

 However, Bath is a big and busy race.  It’s ideal training for big marathons like London – it helps you get used to the crowds, a packed starting line-up and the feel of a city based race, which is always different to more rural runs.

It’s also good for PBs because it’s flat.  The goody bag isn’t bad either.

If you’re running tomorrow – good luck, I may see you there.

Mark Jones