A TRIO of Stratford Athletic Club runners competed in the New York City Marathon which has grown from a Central Park race with just 55 finishers to become one of the world’s most popular marathons.
The course runs through the five boroughs of New York City and, with more than 51,000 finishers in 2016, it is the largest marathon in the world.
Each of the Stratford competitors had fine runs and first of the three to finish was Pete Evans in a time of 3:24.08.
Pete was absolutely delighted with his time. As this was his seventh marathon or ultra marathon in less than eight months, he was planning a slow run round and to just enjoy the views and soak up the atmosphere.
As it turned out, despite the cold, rain and three-hour wait at the start venue, plus two days of walking round New York, he managed his fastest time of the year, 11 minutes quicker than in Berlin in September and 15 minutes quicker than Boston in April.
Pete was in an early wave based on a London time from 2016, so he suspected he would go off too fast and he then planned to ease off.
However, the uphill start on to the bridge from Staten Island to Brooklyn slowed the start down and he got into a nice rhythm and somehow managed to hold the pace much longer than expected.
Despite his original plans, he kept pushing for the last four miles and held on for his time of 3:24:08, some 20 mins quicker than he had planned for.
Next to finish for the club was Simon Bolton in a time of 3:38.38. Simon started off running at a similar pace to Pete – indeed his time at the halfway stage was just 94 seconds behind Pete’s – however he was unable to continue that consistency but, despite this, still recorded a superb time.
For Emily Adams, this was her latest marathon on the way to hopefully achieving her ambition of finishing in all of the six Marathon majors.
With London, Berlin, Chicago and now New York completed, that just leaves Boston, for which she has qualified to take part in next year and then, finally, Tokyo.
Coincidentally, Pete is also aiming to complete the six majors and also has two to go. He is scheduled to complete Tokyo in February and Chicago next October and will hopefully take a rest then!
Emily completed the course in the magnificent time of 3:47.54, within the target she had set herself. She found the race comfortable and the atmosphere fabulous with spectators and bands lining the streets all the way.
She had a great race and enjoyed it all the way round. Like Pete, she found the inclines tough and the wet and cold did not help.
Indeed, for both Pete and Emily, their biggest shock was how many hills there were on the course – not steep but long drags – particularly on to the four bridges but also up first avenue and back down fifth.
They are both trying to work out how it could be uphill going north on first avenue but also uphill coming south on fifth!
The race was won, by just three seconds, by Geoffrey Kamworor in a time of 2:10.53. The first lady to finish, with a time of 2:26.53, was Shalane Flanagan – the first American lady to win since 1977.
Report compiled by David Jones.