Runners’ Siggers sets a searing pace at the London Marathon

Bethan Gwynn is all smiles in the sunshine at London.
Bethan Gwynn is all smiles in the sunshine at London.

Kenilworth Runners’ Andy Siggers had a brilliant run in the Virgin London Marathon on Sunday, finishing 26th overall in the club championships in a time of 2hr 29min 45sec.

In the hottest London Marathon on record, Siggers was the 22nd British runner to finish, which included the elite runners.

Louise Andrews and Neil Sheward on their way to a Guinness world record.

Louise Andrews and Neil Sheward on their way to a Guinness world record.

George Crawford was the only other Kenilworth Runner to break three hours with a time of 2:58:07.

Jane Kidd, continued her excellent form by finishing second in the VL60 category in 3:41:25, ranking her second in the UK in 2018.

Fellow Kenilworth duo Louise Andrews and Neil Sheward, meanwhile, broke the Guinness world record for a mixed three-legged marathon, coming home in 3:59:56 to smash the previous mark by 30 minutes.

Leamington C&AC’s Richard Merrell knocked 55 seconds off his personal best to finish in 2:50:05, with clubmate Charlie Staveley clocking 3:04:32.

Clare Bryan shows off her medal from Antwerp, and her post-race method of recovery.

Clare Bryan shows off her medal from Antwerp, and her post-race method of recovery.

Natalie Bhangal knew at half-way that a PB was out of the question due to the heat and instead soaked up the atmosphere, still finishing in a highly respectable 3:16:09.

Wendy Daniels (3:25:10), Courtney Thornberry (3:54:00), Anouk Molliex (3:58:01) and marathon debutant Mary Donaldson (5:21:40), who is more accustomed to throwing a javelin than distance running, completed the C&AC contingent.

Chris McKeown was the first Spa Strider home in 3:05:38, only two weeks after an excellent performance at the Paris Marathon.

Adam Notley (3:14:19) battled through the final 10k and Rob Thompson (3:29:38) and Steve Taylor (3:34:11) took measured approaches in the heat which paid off on the day.

Paul Edwards (3:43:18) did brilliantly to stay on the course having suffered severely from the heat at half-way, which he reached in 1:25:34, while Ben Cohen (4:21:17) and Kevin Baskerville (5:43:16) completed their debut marathons.

Laura Peake was the first female Strider, finishing in 3:30:27, followed by Bethan Gwynn (3:35:41) and Kate Gadsby (3:41:15).

Seasoned marathoners Carolyn Wilkinson (3:44:39) and Sue Cox (3:46:29) called on all their reserves to tough-out the race and, along with Anne Hurrell (3:48:10), finished within ‘good for age’ standards.

Debutant Lucy Marcovitch (4:30:47) paced her marathon effort brilliantly and Ruth Tennant (4:35:22) found the heat challenging but joined Frances Parkes (4:37:18), Lisa Edgerton (5:35:52), Tanya Britain (5:37:17) and Hazel Mann (5:47:19) as proud London finishers.

Leamington’s Rob Smith (2:00:17) took gold in the men’s T51/52 event in 2hr 17sec, his first victory in the London Marathon, having finished fourth for the past three years.

Colombia’s Cristian Torres (2:02:21) finished second.

“I am really pleased with that,” said Smith. “Cristian and I were swapping places all the way. Every time it got to a hill, he had the strength to power ahead of me but on the flat I would pull it back and go into the lead.

“I caught him after about 24.5 miles and I kept going and didn’t let him get on the back of me. I put my head down and I am so pleased to get the win on that. It was my fastest time in London and I am really happy with that, it was a good race.”

Warwick School student Zien Zhou continued his London Marathon success by winning the Mini Marathon for boys aged 15 to 17.

Zien, 16, who has cerebral palsy, won the event two years ago for boys under 14.

Selected finishers (Kenilworth Runners unless stated): 902, George Crawford (2:58:07); 1,262 David Leadley (3:02:05); 2,109, Martin Dorrill (3:12:11); 2,557, Nick Lawrence (3:16:17); 4,318, Lee Harrison (3:29:47); 4,509, Wayne Briggs (3:31:13); 5,933, David Oxtoby (3:40:24); 6,090, Peter Nichol (3:41:25); 6,832, Rachel Miller (3:45:58); 9,665, Mel Knight (3:59:51); 9,668, Dave Pettifer (3:59:52); 10,689, Frazer Davies (4:05:44); 11,976, Pam Grimwade (4:12:16); 12,138, Linda Fullaway (4:13:00); 12,209, Matt Griffiths (4:13:20); 14,478, Michael Scandrett (4:23:57); 14,479, Andy Snow (4:23:58); 14,483, Stewart Underhill (4:23:58); 16,001, Sophie Cookson (4:30:24); 20,092, Lucy Williams (4:47:46); 22,236, Gary Mitchell (4:56:41); 24,533, Samantha Moffatt (5:06:49)32,440, Amanda Males (5:47:21).

In Spain, Striders’ Carlos De Lucas completed his debut marathon in Madrid in 3:31.

Clare Bryan also faced unfamiliar high temperatures, completing the Antwerp Marathon in 4:08 to finish 134th woman.