A cold, but not freezing, morning in York for the 35th Brass Monkey half marathon. The weather, as it turned out, was pretty kind to the 1500 or so runners. The drizzle had disappeared by the time the race started at 10:00 and the wind was barely noticeable.
If you enjoy road running there is no denying it’s a cracking race. York racecourse provides the organisers with a great base for runners and spectators alike, the course is as described; ‘fast and flat’ and the marshals and officials do a great job making everyone feel looked after.
I have a theory that the January date is particularly appealing for club runners looking for a ‘post-Christmas’ target – a reason to pull on the high-vis kit through December. Whatever the reason, this is a popular race with a capital P and apparently sold out in 38 minutes.
Unlike last year, this time I had a plan. Go out at 75 minute pace and (3:33/km) and try to pick it up towards the end. As it worked out I had some company for a big chunk of the race as a group of 5-6 runners from various clubs around the North East, including captain Gareth Pritchard, worked together in a little pack – each taking a turn to lead the group.
This worked really well up to 9/10 miles when I decided to make a bit of a move – followed only by one runner from Roundhay Runners in Leeds. It emerged that we had a similar goal in mind and again, the ‘strength in numbers’ approach helped build the momentum towards the end of the race, which was now in sight (metaphorically speaking).
As we hit the railway bridge with a couple of miles to go I had a little bit left in the legs, and pushed on again with my pace now nearer to 10k effort (3:22/km) – time for my end of race mantra ‘now or never’.
So, a second over 1:14 according to my watch, a second under according to my chip; I always did like chips.
A new half marathon PB of 01:13.59 and a post-race analysis of ‘job done’.
A very popular race with fellow Elvet Striders in abundance with lots of smiles and encouragement pre and post-race.
I really hope this can be the first entry on the running calendar for 2018, it is most certainly one of my favourites.
|Strider Pos.||Bibno.||Finish time||Chip time||Participant||Category||Start time||Speed||Pace|
|1||896||01:14:02||01:13:59||Stephen Jackson||(M) Open Senior||10:00:10||10.62 mph||5:39 min/mile|
|2||1382||01:15:41||01:15:37||Gareth Pritchard||(M) V35||10:00:10||10.38 mph||5:46 min/mile|
|3||1066||01:18:20||01:18:14||Michael Littlewood||(M) V40||10:00:12||10.03 mph||5:58 min/mile|
|4||62||01:25:17||01:25:09||Matthew Archer||(M) V35||10:00:15||9.22 mph||6:30 min/mile|
|5||165||01:36:03||01:35:40||Elaine Bisson||(F) V35||10:00:29||8.18 mph||7:19 min/mile|
|6||165||01:41:04||01:39:46||Kate Milburn||(F) V35||10:01:24||7.88 mph||7:36 min/mile|
|7||304||01:42:28||01:41:26||David Case||(M) Open Senior||10:01:09||7.67 mph||7:49 min/mile|
|8||1800||01:45:47||01:44:44||Nicola Whyte||(F) Open Senior||10:01:09||7.43 mph||8:04 min/mile|
|19||1558||01:47:43||01:46:59||Eric Green||(M) V45||10:00:50||7.30 mph||8:13 min/mile|
|9||1524||01:48:47||01:48:02||Chris Shearsmith||(M) V35||10:00:52||7.22 mph||8:18 min/mile|
|10||436||01:49:46||01:48:27||Lesley Charman||(F) V40||10:01:25||7.16 mph||8:22 min/mile|
|11||250||01:52:43||01:51:24||Victoria Brown||(F) V35||10:01:25||6.97 mph||8:36 min/mile|
|12||713||01:56:17||01:55:22||Lesley Hamill||(F) V40||10:01:02||6.76 mph||8:52 min/mile|
|13||274||01:56:19||01:55:24||Karen Byng||(F) V45||10:01:02||6.76 mph||8:52 min/mile|
|14||435||01:57:47||01:56:29||Steve Ellis||(M) 60||10:01:25||6.67 mph||8:59 min/mile|
|15||790||01:59:51||01:58:09||Mark Herkes||(M) Open Senior||10:01:49||6.56 mph||9:08 min/mile|
|16||389||02:00:35||01:57:57||Lucy Cowton||(F) Open Senior||10:02:44||6.52 mph||9:12 min/mile|
|17||327||02:00:35||01:58:58||Trevor Chaytor||(M) V50||10:01:43||6.52 mph||9:12 min/mile|
|18||1506||02:00:38||01:59:06||Anna Seeley||(F) Open Senior||10:01:39||6.51 mph||9:12 min/mile|
|19||1558||02:00:39||01:59:06||Catherine Smith||(F) V40||10:01:39||6.51 mph||9:12 min/mile|
|20||485||02:04:47||02:02:22||Jane Dowsett||(F) V45||10:02:32||6.30 mph||9:31 min/mile|
|21||485||02:05:28||02:03:56||Karen Crampton||(F) V45||10:01:39||6.26 mph||9:34 min/mile|
|22||1367||02:08:33||02:06:10||James Potter||(M) V35||10:02:30||6.11 mph||9:48 min/mile|
|23||1926||02:08:57||02:06:30||Katie-Louise Finney||(F) Open Senior||10:02:34||6.09 mph||9:50 min/mile|
|24||441||02:10:28||02:08:01||Katie Davison||(F) Open Senior||10:02:34||6.02 mph||9:57 min/mile|
|25||1314||02:10:29||02:08:02||Mike Parker||(M) V40||10:02:33||6.02 mph||9:57 min/mile|
|26||1555||02:12:28||02:09:59||Alan Smith||(M) V70||10:02:35||5.93 mph||10:06 min/mile|
|27||789||02:12:32||02:10:07||Lucy Herkes||(F) Open Senior||10:02:32||5.93 mph||10:07 min/mile|
|28||1067||02:13:20||02:10:44||Wendy Littlewood||(F) V35||10:02:43||5.89 mph||10:10 min/mile|
|29||938||02:13:45||02:11:20||Debbie Jones||(F) V45||10:02:32||5.88 mph||10:12 min/mile|
|30||558||02:16:09||02:13:19||Kirsten Fenwick||(F) Open Senior||10:02:57||5.77 mph||10:23 min/mile|
|31||1146||02:16:22||02:13:57||Debbie Mcfarland||(F) Open Senior||10:02:32||5.76 mph||10:24 min/mile|
|32||841||02:19:22||02:16:46||Karen Hooper||(F) V40||10:02:42||5.64 mph||10:38 min/mile|
|33||65||02:24:50||02:24:10||Teresa Archer||(F) Open Senior||10:00:47||5.43 mph||11:03 min/mile|
|34||114||02:26:14||02:23:36||Kerry Barnett||(F) V45||10:02:44||5.37 mph||11:09 min/mile|
|35||1325||02:26:37||02:23:59||Joanne Patterson||(F) Open Senior||10:02:44||5.36 mph||11:11 min/mile|
|36||634||02:29:04||02:26:16||Rebecca Gilmore||(F) Open Senior||10:02:55||5.27 mph||11:22 min/mile|
|37||1676||02:33:37||02:30:49||Margaret Thompson||(F) V65||10:02:54||5.12 mph||11:43 min/mile|
|38||139||02:36:20||02:33:36||Faye Bell||(F) V35||10:02:50||5.03 mph||11:56 min/mile|
|39||913||02:44:27||02:44:27||Neil Jennings||(M) V50||10:00:07||4.78 mph||12:33 min/mile|
|40||912||02:51:16||02:48:37||Elaine Jennings||(F) V50||10:02:45||4.59 mph||13:04 min/mile|
|41||1035||02:53:03||02:50:21||Rachel Leigh-Firbank||(F) V40||10:02:48||4.54 mph||13:12 min/mile|
“I completed the York brass monkey today for the first time. 2hrs 3min 56sec. Sore and aching but very happy with my result. Met up with some lovely striders who were very friendly and supportive, especially Trevor Chaytor who helped me get home afterwards due to an unexpected emergency back in Durham.” Karen Crampton