I enjoy competing on the streets of London as there is always such a great atmosphere on marathon day and this year was no different. When the under 17 girls were called from the starting pen at Old Billingsgate and took to the road for a five minute warm up, I remembered standing on the start line six years ago, a bag of nerves unsure what the race would bring. This year my nervousness about the race left me and I decided that I was just going to enjoy it.
|Team Wales 2015|
At Big Ben which is about a mile from the finish, Cari and I were neck and neck fighting for fourth position and it was great to hear my old primary school teacher, Mrs Baynham, cheering me on from the crowds. Running along Bird Cage Walk towards The Mall the crowds got louder and our pace got quicker. Rounding the bend into the mall at the 400 metre sign I picked up my pace as Cari was still on my shoulder. I knew that is was going to come down to a sprint finish between the two of us and I gave it all that I had. I got ahead of Cari just as another athlete came tearing past us. I raced after her just overtaking her before the line. I was pulled over by the officials and I couldn't believe that I had finished fourth overall and third in the regional challenge! I had never finished in the top ten before at this event so I felt very happy to finally achieve this. Cari finished sixth and is still eligible to compete for Welsh Schools' next year!
I met the rest of the Welsh girls whilst walking along The Mall, it was great to hear how everyone did within the Welsh team and there were some really good performances by our athletes in other age groups. The Under 15 boys were team of the moment taking team gold in a really strong age group. I can't believe my brother Luke broke 16 minutes and will be back to race in the same age group next year.
After what must have been hundreds of photographs taken by proud parents on Horse Guards Parade it was time to say goodbye to the team and for all of us to go our separate ways and enjoy the rest of the day in London.
Before my family and I left London, we were sure to wait for Justin Baird-Murray from The Metropole Hotel in my home town of Llandrindod Wells to cross the finish line. The hotel sponsors my brother and I to support our running. Justin ran the London Marathon raising money for Pancreatic Cancer UK and completed it inside three hours 20 minutes which is 10 minutes quicker than he ran it two years ago!
|Luke, Justin and I|
Now time to get running up some big hills ready for the mountain running season!