I arrived at the SMH Half Marathon course yesterday just about the time the race was starting. I stationed myself at a point about 4.7 km into the race in the hope that by the time daiskmeliadorn reached me the field would be sufficiently spread out that I would be able to pick her out of the crowd as she ran past.
I assembled my sign and set it up where I hoped she would see the sign, and me. She belongs to the Sydney branch of the global FrontRunners running club and there were quite a few club members taking part.
It didn’t take long before the eventual winner arrived. He was already well ahead of his rivals. And it wasn’t many minutes after that when daiskmeliadorn arrived, recognisable in her red and white FrontRunners top. And we saw each other!
The course is a kind of out-and-back loop, such that the runners return along the other side of this road on their way back to the finish. So I moved myself and my sign over to the other side of the road. For the returning runners my location was just after the 13 km point. The loop they had run from the 4.7 km point to the 13 km point had some significant hills in it and I knew daiskmeliadorn’s legs would be feeling some pain. But when she arrived she was still smiling – if only for the camera!
It’s still a long way to go to the finish line – another 8 km – including a very demanding 2 km final uphill from Mrs Macquarie’s Chair. But she did it – and completed the course in a personal best half marathon time: 01:43:02. Her previous best time? 01:43:03.