2,300 runners finish wet Fleet Half MarathonBy Stephen Lloyd
March 18, 2013
MORE than 2,000 runners braved the rain to complete this year's Fleet Half Marathon.
Matt Blunden from the RAF won the on March 17 in a time of 1 hour, 11 minutes and 36 seconds, while the first woman home, and an impressive 23rd overall, was Liz Cocks of Birstall Running Club in 1.16.36.
The thousands of runners were hampered with wet weather and muddy conditions, adding to their finishing times.
Leukaemia & Lymphoma Research was the winning charity team, while the Hartley Wintney-based Matthew Elvidge Trust was second, with a record-breaking 170 runners.
They were running in memory of Matthew, who took his own life aged 23 after a short period of depression.
The local charity associated with the race is the Brain Tumour Charity, which was invited by the organisers following the death of race founder Colin Gostelow from a brain tumour in 2009.
Angela and Neil Dickson, charity founders, were at the start line to greet Team Truly Scrumptious and thanked them for raising more than £3,000 in sponsorship.
Race director Penny Abbott thanked all the runners, marshals and other helpers.
"It was a very difficult weekend in terms of the weather, with the freak rain for hours on March 15 severely impacting the preparation of the course and the state of Calthorpe Park on the race day.
"However, the 2,300 finishing runners all seemed to still enjoy their day and I hope they went away happy with their performance.
"They should all be very proud of themselves for still turning out and running when the forecast was so poor on race day morning.
"It has been a very tiring weekend for all involved and we hope that Mother Nature is kinder to us next year."
For full coverage and results, see the special supplement in this week's News & Mail, out on Thursday, March 21.