Runners smiled through the rain last Sunday (14 October) as they completed the 13.1 mile Slough Half Marathon course.
Keen runners took part in the much anticipated event after months of preparation and training, supported by hundreds of volunteers and cheered on by countless local residents.
The Half Marathon returned to the borough after an 18 year break and the exciting new course took in most of the town’s roads, starting and finishing in Salt Hill Park.
The race started 30 minutes later than scheduled, at 9.30am due to an earlier accident on the A4 Bath Road.
British 800m champion and Olympian Shelayna Oskan-Clarke was at the start line to sound the klaxon and set runners on their way.
Runners reported a fast course, with many recording personal best times.
All race finishers received a medal and goodie bag and trophies were presented to the top three male and female finishers, plus age group winners.
Scott Matthews of East Cheshire Harriers & Tameside AC claimed the men’s title in a time of 1:14:47, more than three minutes ahead of James Silvey (1:18:03). John Burnett of Bracknell Forest Runners took third place in 1:19:32.
The women’s race was won by Jill Collett of Datchet Dashers in a time of 1:19:52, placing her fourth overall. Second place went to Didi Spasova who crossed the finish line in 1:33:13, with third place going to Jilly Raw of Datchet Dashers who finished in 1:37:02.
Datchet Dasher Paul Woolley claimed the first men’s veteran category win taking the MV40 title in a time of 1:21:19. David Meier took the MV50 prize in 1:26:14 and Mick Driver of Burnham Joggers won the MV60+ category in a time of 1:49:24.
Datchet Dashers continued their success when Helen Jones-Totays won the first women’s veteran prize in the WV40 category in a time of 1:42:01. Penny Cutler of Handy Cross Runners took the WV50 title in a time of 1:43:19 and Elizabeth Annetts of Burnham Joggers / Runthrough UK claimed the WV60+ prize in 1:50:29.
A full list of race times can be found on the Sports Systems website at http://www.sportsystems.co.uk/ss/results/Slough%20Half%20Marathon/3590.
Young runners and people wanting to take on a shorter course took part in the 5K Fun Run which began 15 minutes after the Slough Half Marathon, starting and finishing in Salt Hill Park, and including Baylis Park.
Councillor Rob Anderson, cabinet member for environment and leisure, said: “The Slough Half Marathon shone brightly through the wet conditions last weekend as we returned a great sporting event to our borough.
“Congratulations to everyone who took part, with many of our runners achieving impressive personal bests. Participants raised substantial funds for a variety of charities and completed some amazing personal challenges on Sunday.
“A huge thank you to everyone who brought the Slough Half Marathon alive. An event of this scale would not have been possible without the support of an army of enthusiastic volunteers and the local residents who came out in force to offer words of support, water and jelly babies.
“The Slough Half Marathon is a fantastic sporting event that showcases our great town and promotes Slough as a thriving centre for business and community. It helps to inspire local people of all ages to take up physical activity and become involved in a true community event.
“We’ll be back next year with another great event as early preparations begin for the 2019 Slough Half Marathon.”
Professional photos taken on the day can be purchased directly at https://www.charleswhittonphotography.com/slough-half-marathon-141018.
The 2018 Slough Half Marathon was sponsored by Morgan Sindall Group companies and the 5K Fun Run was sponsored by Everyone Active. Both events are endorsed by the Slough Wellbeing Board.
The delivery and success of the Slough Half Marathon would not have been possible without donations and volunteer support from a number of local businesses and organisations.
We would like to thank the following people for their kind generosity and support: Tesco, Volvo, Bidfood, Mars Wrigley, Holiday Inn Express, Reckitt Benckiser, Slough Business Community Partnership, Buzz Gym, easyGym, uFit Bootcamp, Slough Outreach, Creative Academy, East Berkshire College, LangarAid, Masons, Sikh Wellness Awareness Team and 1st Cippenham Scout Group.