2011 London Marathon

Farnahm Runners group at Greenwich before start of 2011 London Marathon

It was a record breaking London Marathon for Farnham Runners in more ways than one. Four members achieved an enviable target of becoming part of a World Record team and two broke club records. The twenty runners raised £17,000 for charity between them and finished tired but happy after soaring temperatures made the 26.2 miles more challenging than usual.

A smiling Michael Rix crossed the line in 2hours 47 minutes 50 seconds, an excellent time but remarkable as he had fought off injury worries during the race until he found a “second wind” at 17 miles. The previous week he placed seventh (and second M40) in the Great Welsh Llanelli marathon, having been in third for much of the way until a tight calf muscle slowed him to 2-50-19. A new club record was made- two sub 3 hour marathons in the space of a week!

New member Richard Warner-Hoskins paced well with the heat for a splendid 2-50-18.

Sarah Hill squeezed into her 3 hour target to take the Farnham Runners ladies club record to new heights. Her time of 2-59-57 gave her a superb 41st place and 31st in her age group.

Despite the heat, there were some new personal bests while others tackled the distance for the first time. James Ogilvie took another minute off his best for 2-56-05 to give the club four finishers under three hours.

Charles Ashby improved his time to 3-05-11, followed by Ian Carley in 3-06-28. A delighted Mike Walberton (3-11-41) made good use of his club entry for the race and coped well with the warm temperatures to take almost 12 minutes from his previous time, raising £600 for the Phyllis Tuckwell Hospice. Steve Kitney clocked 3-13-26, while Martin Billett collected an amazing £5,000 for Cherry Trees Respite Care Home in his first marathon (3-39-44). A smiling James Finney in 3-46-43 was pleased to take almost twenty minutes from his personal best, with £500 going to the Helen Arkell Dyslexia Centre.

It was the first marathon for Chris Cramp (4-06-37), Stefan Klincewicz (4-13-30) and Emma Drinkwater (4-30-44) and they raised £500 for the Heaton Ellis Trust (seeking a cure for motor neurone disease), £500 for Leukaemia Research and £2,300 for the Meningitis Trust respectively. Vince Crowley ran his 17th consecutive marathon for Leonard Cheshire Disability in 4-30-53.

Tori Shaw battled injury for 5-04-21 and helped the disability charity Scope funds to the tune of £2,400 and Graham Wilton accompanied his wife in her first marathon (5-23-08).

Last but not least Fran Bills, Sandra Bray, Shirley Perrett and Richard Sheppard all made it into the record books as part of a human centipede with 47 legs, all linked together for the whole race, a major logistical achievement in 7 hours 42/43 seconds! This beats the previous record set by a caterpillar with only 34 legs set by a team that included Princess Beatrice and two of Richards Branson’s children. The four Farnham Runners are colleting £1,500 each for Scope.

The previous week in even warmer conditions and with some hills to contend with four members ran the second Brighton marathon. Sean Smith gained a worthy 3-17-14 and £500 for the children’s charity “Rocking Horse”. Emma Doven was delighted to take over 15 minutes for her PB in 3-58-21 while Helen Cathie raised £150 for the Treolar Trust with 4-41-20.