THE SUN shone down on runners in Stratford Rotary’s 37th Shakespeare Marathon and Half Marathon.
More than 2,600 entered this year’s event on Sunday (May 13), which was started by world record breaking multi marathon runner Steve Edwards. He then took to the course himself for his 822nd marathon in his quest to become the first person to run 1,000 marathons. He finished his latest marathon in three hours and 21 minutes.
KES pupil Archie Marson-Bacon had the honour of presenting the finishers with a medal he designed in a competition held earlier this year, and even put one around the neck of his father Colin, who took part in the half marathon, after promising Archie he would race if his son won the competition. After only two weeks training, Colin finished the race in 1 hour 54 minutes.
New race director Samantha Wheeler said: “This was our 37th marathon and half marathon, and as this year is Stratford Rotary’s 90th anniversary, we wanted our runners and their supporters to feel that this event was special.
“They travel from all over the UK and abroad and have already commented that they loved Stratford and the atmosphere, the stunning course, the friendly and supportive local folk, and the professionalism of the marshalling and volunteers.
“We’d like to thank our sponsors, including Shakespeare Martineau, NFU, Grenfell James and Listers, as well as all of the other organisations who helped to make this year an outstanding success.
“Thanks to BIFFA, we were able to recycle 2600 banana skins, sponges and a whopping 12,000 empty water bottles. The Greenway and recreation ground were litter picked by local youth groups – all working hard to keep Stratford beautiful.”
This year’s event is set raise around £70,000 which will be distributed to local charities and companies, including The Shakespeare Hospice, Stratford Samaritans, ESH Works and Lifespace Trust.
Men’s full marathon – Tom Buckley (Hercules Wimbledon AC) 2:41:58; Richard Walsh (Worcester AC) 2:48:07;
Matt Biggs (Birchfield Harriers) 2:50:13
Women’s full marathon – Clare Rees (Aldershot Farnham & District AC) 3:09:22; Kathryn Chapman (Bishops Stortford RC) 3:10:21; Anna Ward (St Albans Striders) 3:12:31
Men’s half marathon – Simon Birch (Hinckley RC) 1:10:41; Alasdair Russell (Kendall ACC) 1:10:41; Orlando Corea (Birchfield Harriers) 1:13:30
Women’s half marathon – Nicola Sykes (Bournville Harriers) 1:23:24; Joanne McCandless 1:23:56; Abby Halcarz 1:24:22