[Report by Jo Turner]
On Sunday 11th February, 17 members of Worthing Striders Running Club took to the streets of Barcelona to take part in the Mitja Marató de Barcelona, better known as the Barcelona Half Marathon.
Despite snow fall two days before and torrential rain the day after, the day itself presented perfect racing conditions; a cool temperature, clear blue skies and a very light wind. With the race being at 8.30am, an early start was required and following a short metro ride to the start line, all of the Striders stood on the start line with 16,000 other participants.
The race began in waves with confetti and cheers of ‘Bravo’ as the Striders began to pick up pace and head to the “Monument a Colon” at the end of “Las Ramblas”. The 21km route continued to “Place Espanya”, past the “Forum”, “Port Olimpic” and along the seafront, finishing at the iconic “Arc de Triomf”.
The race saw a new course record of 59mins 44 Secs by Ethiopian Mule Wasihun followed by the first Strider home, Steve Fryer, in a fantastic time of 1:30:33. He was followed by the youngest Strider, Sam Scrimgour who was completing his first ever half marathon and finished in 1:38:53.
The race also saw a first half marathon for both club Treasurer, Karen Thomas who had a fantastic race despite suffering from tonsillitis and Sarah Baker who finished in 2:16:02. All club members enjoyed the experience and have started planning for another international race next year. Celebrations with Sangria, Tapas and Paella commenced whilst the Striders reflected on their achievements. Results for Barcelona Half Marathon were:
Steve Fryer 1:30:33; Sam Scrimgour 1:38:53; Neil Terry 1:40:52; Jo Turner 1:43:33; Neil Rabone 1:46:31; Kevin Valentine 1:51:35; Rod Baker 1:52:00; Tony Pearce 1:54:07; Helen Black 1:56:56; Liz Crockford 2:03:44; Sarah Baker 2:16:02; Jacky Brown 2:16:02; Craig Hawkins 2:16:08; Karen Godfrey 2:23:31; Dave Godfrey 2:24:10; Carla Tullett 2:26:00
Left to right, Kevin Valentine, Sarah Baker, Dave Godfrey, Jacky Brown, Tony Pearce, Karen Thomas, Rod Baker, Steve Fryer, Jo Turner, Craig Hawkins,, Sam Scrimgour, Liz Crockford, Karen Godfrey, Neil Rabone (also ran, not in picture, Helen Black, Neil Terry and Carla Tullett).