Brighton Half Marathon 22nd February 2015 Report by Angela Parker
The alarm woke us up to the tune of “I do love to be beside the seaside” on the morning of Sunday 22nd February. Elaine Ellender and I had an awful night in the Hotel and were quite sleep deprived. We drew back the curtains to find the frost had arrived laying thickly on the cars and pavements. The sky was an orange glow as the sun was rising. It looked like it was a day for our sunglasses.
After breakfast and defrosting the car we made our way to Brighton Race Course to park the car. A thick layer of frost covered the ground here and we had to tread carefully so as not to slip. The Park & Ride buses were waiting to shuttle us down to the start line on the Madeira Drive.
It was the 25th anniversary of the Brighton Half Marathon and 12,500 runners were expected and it was a time for celebration. The organisers had done a splendid job in ensuring all our needs were catered for. There were ample porta loos, the baggage handling area was allocated in race number blocks and the medical assistance was all in place.
The race started at 09.00 hours and cannons of multi coloured confetti exploded into the air and rained down on the front runners who set off on time. It took Elaine and me another four and a half minutes to cross the start line and we were off. The first mile took us into the town area past the Brighton Pavilion and then it was back out to Marine Parade. Here the course took a continuous incline to just after mile 4 by the Golf Course, where the runners turned round and began the descent back the way they came. The course was flat along the Kings Road and Kings Way where it turned round again at mile 10, back along the seafront past brightly coloured beach huts and Hove Lawns where it joined the road at the Peace Statue and we ran past the West Pier. Then it was one mile to the finish along Madeira Drive.
I was wearing my commemorative T Shirt and had my name printed on it. It was lovely to hear strangers in the crowd calling out my name and wishing me well. The children were fabulous in holding their arms out for high fives and when runners obliged hearing their squeals of delight.
Elaine, on her return to form had a fantastic non-stop, comfortable run all the way, taking in the fantastic atmosphere.
The crowds, volunteers, marshals and the “bands on the run” were all brilliant. Jelly babies were being handed out and there were water stations at 2.5 miles, near the 6 mile mark and the 10 mile mark.
Elaine finished her first Brighton Half in 2:21:36 and I got a PB of 1:58:59 and knocked a cool 10 mins 19 secs off last year’s run!