2:39:43 this time; 57 sec slower than last, but with a slight headwind and another year on my body clock, so I was pretty happy, and had an absolutely fabulous day; started immediately behind Haile Gebsrellaise, ended with beer in the sun outside the Red Lion with the Sub-3 crew and then more beer with family and friends, and here I am en route greeting my nearest and dearest on Tower Bridge before doing aeroplanes across it to huge (probably baffled) applause:
(Amazing picture Georgie!)
At 2:38:46, this could well be my lifetime best. The weather was kind and everything went to plan, with pretty even splits (5K every 18:45 or so, 6:03/M). And I smuggled a £5 eBay camera to the start, to get some behind-the-scenes pictures of the Championship start. (I kept the SD card and gave the camera to someone in the crowd.)
Clocked a qualifying time and what to know what the whole experience is like? Watch this...
Video with music and BBC snippet
BBC-free version works in Germany
|Bouncers beckon us gradually up behind the elites||Kebede (who won) is interviewed on TV while Mo Farah looks on||Dave Bedford ready to start the race, Kiprotich wearing 6 was Olympic champion|
I can die happy now this photo is safely stuck to my fridge... courtesy of The Mirror. Look over Kebede's right shoulder! Never again will I get pictured in a line-up quite like this, literally among the very best in the world. Well, for about 2 seconds, anyway...
|Pictured by Georgie & Ros on the slope up to Tower Bridge...
this road will be rammed with runners in another 20 mins
|And down the other side, right on the blue line|
|At about 23 miles, very happy to see family & friends||Past a pedestrian crossing refuge at Big Ben, last mile||The finish!|
This one went pretty well, but I was somewhat dismayed to clock the same time -- to the second! -- as in 2011, at 2:42:38.
|Tower Bridge, my favourite bit.||On the Embankment and the mob has thinned out...||Birdcage Walk I think, near the end. On the right is Rosalind Kieran, who was first woman in the mass race this year.|
My first London, when I scraped the sub-2:45 championship qualification time by pegging it down the Mall to finish in 2:44:47...
|Can probably see the clock ticking up perilously towards 2:45 here on the Mall...||Flinging myself across the line, as always. My cheesy arm-waving copied by the guy behind!||Very happy afterwards. (If you finish fairly early, there are a LOT of Marathonfoto photographers looking for subjects.)|