A number of Sleaford area runners were in the record breaking field for this year’s Virgin Money London Marathon on Sunday.
More than 38,000 people took part, making the 2015 race the biggest in the event’s 35-year history, with fund-raisers and amateur runners rubbing shoulders with elite athletes from around the world.
Six members of the Sleaford Striders Athletics Club and five members of the Sleaford Town Runners Club were in the field, with Town Runner Greg Southern recording a fine time of two hours 48 minutes 19 seconds.
Strider Adam Runacres had set his sights on breaking the world record for being the fastest runner dressed as a jockey to complete the marathon. He just missed out on the record but still finished in a good time of 3.54.00.
Other Town Runners’ times were: Emily Foran 03.04.01, Chris Balfe 03.30.53, Jayne MacArthur 04.46.40 and Mike Folland 04.58.35.
Times for the other Sleaford Striders were: Sandy Telfer 3.11.03, Dave Burton 3.17.10, Bill Rayner 4.18.18 and Clive Holden 5.29.42.
It was an unfortunate day for Ann Riddell of Sleaford Striders, who was on target for a personal best over the marathon distance of under five hours when disaster struck agonisingly close to the end. She had just over a mile to go when she collapsed and then found herself receiving treatment in the medical tent. Although she recovered well, she didn’t get the opportunity to cross the finish line.
It was an emotional day too for legendary British athlete Paula Radcliffe, a former three-time winner of the women’s race, who was taking part in her final London Marathon. Paula, who has spent the last two years recovering from foot surgery, finished in 2.36.55.