Saturday saw the first running of the Kent Circuit Marathon which replaced the award winning Kent Roadrunner Marathon. Despite the name change much remained the same including the venue and the course which took place on the gently undulating, but perfectly smooth, private tarmac circuit at the Cyclopark near Gravesend. The course is a familiar one for several of the Road Runners including Rosie Atkins, Dan Smith and Andy Wilmot who all returned to race again. The looped nature of the course makes it an ideal location for spectators and the Road Runners were supported by family and friends who set up a very popular water spraying station.
The race starts with an initial loop of 0.5 miles before a further 20 laps each measuring 1.29 miles to make up the 26.2 mile distance. Weather conditions were tough for the runners with the race starting with a downpour and a spectacular display of lightening before then warming up considerably. The heat took its toll on a number of runners across the field.
Andy Owen was the first to finish the mentally tortuous course in 3 hours 27 minutes. John Warne was very happy to run his fastest marathon in recent years finishing in 4 hours 13 minutes and 3rd in the men’s 60 – 69 age category. Rosie Atkins showed real determination and stamina finishing in 4 hours 18 minutes. Not far behind were Dan Smith and Andy Wilmot who finished together in 4 hours 23 minutes. Wilmot was also first in the men’s 70 and over age category for the third year in a row. (Photo attached of Andy Wilmot courtesy of Hazel Buist)
Elsewhere Caroliena Cameron took to the trails on Sunday running the Elmstead Market trail half marathon in 2 hours and 20 minutes.