Maidenhead Half Marathon Race Report
The first race in September always feels like the first day of a new school term. For many it’s a test to see how the summer’s training has gone, and lots of runners like to get an autumn half marathon in early as a marker for a later marathon attempt.
This was our first year helping out at the Maidenhead Half, and we were made to feel welcome by Chris, Claire and the rest of the Purple Patch running club who put on a great local race, but one which attracted runners from all over the country due to its fast course and slick organisation.
We had so many volunteers to join our pace team that we had to turn down more runners than we took on. But we picked fourteen from our list and we all met up in the race village on a day which delivered perfect running conditions for fast times. The race went pretty flawlessly, but one thing that we weren’t prepared for was the out and back through the underpass, which caused our pacers with their big sticky out flags to adopt a few comedy running techniques to get through unscathed.
Around the course, the atmosphere was great with big groups forming round the pacers, some dropping off along the way, but others tagging along and being pulled round to plenty of tales of new PBs.
Alex and Richard were our fastest pair, coming across the finish line at the exact second the finish line clock ticked over to 90 minutes, with many runners around them breaking the hour and a half for the first time. This set the tone for the morning. All the RacePacing pacers are experienced runners who pace at times which they are comfortable running at, and this was reflected in their finishing times which were all within a few seconds of their targets.
The biggest group of runners formed around Joe and Greg who were running sub 2h00 and finished in 1h59m56s. Due to quite a few late changes to our team, we only had one female pacer, but Charlotte did a great job with Phil in bringing home the slower runners in 2h30.
With the male and female race winners coming in at 70 mins and 77 mins, this is definitely a course for fast running and one which we hope to be involved with in future as it grows bigger.
Thanks to our pace team who did a great job all round:
1h30 Alex & Richard
1h40 Philip & Alex
1h50 Kieran & David
2h00 Greg & Joe
2h10 Stuart & Paul
2h20 Alan & Chris
2h30 Charlotte & Phil
Remember that you can get Xempo running gear personalised with details of your own race at www.xempo.co.uk/discover-your-colour