The Warwick half is a couple of years old I believe, so I thought it was a good one to have a go at, having not run it before. It was a good decision.
I made an early arrival at the Warwick Racecourse where the race was to start at 9am. I parked in a very convenient car park in the racecourse grounds, or so I thought. I grabbed a cuppa from the cafe, bumped into John McKeon who told me he was after a fast one today, in final preparation for his forthcoming London marathon. Never saw him again, so I assume that’s what happened! Wishing him and fellow BVH’s good running in the VLM and any other spring marathons coming up.
I have been out with the sunday crew most weeks this year, slowly increasing my mileage, as I am building up for an attempt at the JW Ultra in September, so some spring halves have been on my plan, this being my first of the year (Droitwich was on my plan but was postponed due to the floods).
The race starts adjacent to the race track and heads out of town, there was tremendous support for most of the way, I am not sure of the numbers running, at a guess maybe a couple of thousand and many wearing the free British Heart Foundation t-shirt supplied by the race sponsor.
I was off to a good start, feeling ok, a little apprehensive though as I was averaging under 8 min miles, which is fast for me. The route was a good one, taking one out into the lovely countryside around Warwick, however there were more than enough cheeky hills thrown in, just to sort us out.
Drinks stations arrived every three miles and the course was well marshalled, I was still feeling good, and had reached my target of eight miles in just over an hour, so it was then that I decided to go for it and see if i could get a PB. The last five miles were tough with some more steady inclines for us to endure, so I was thinking that maybe it won’t be today, but never gave in. The final mile was on me and I knew I was in with a chance so a sprint finish was in order, I went over the finish line and checked my garmin which announced a ‘new record” to me, 1:39:15, which if correct when the results are published will be a PB by all of seven seconds! My final mile being my quickest at 7:01 minute/mile. All my miles being consistent with non over the 8 min/mile which was pleasing.
Overall a good race to run, if I was to have any criticism to the organisers I would have liked the route to involve more of the castle, as it is a key feature of Warwick, plus the racecourse car park, where there was no warning on parking up that you have to stay there until the race was finished before being let out!
I received a medal and a few goodies in the bag along with a free BHF t -shirt, which is of course a great charity and no doubt raised loads at the race.