Wilmslow Half Marathon 2024

The latest race in the Road Championships was held on Sunday 24th March 2024 and proved to be a good one.  This was the 40th anniversary of the Wilmslow Half Marathon and was raced by 3395 athletes from all over the country.  This race was part of the Wilmslow running festival and the organisers had managed to gain some great sponsorship from Waters, ASICS and Running Bear amongst others which meant that there was a decent running village at the race HQ at Wilmslow Rugby Club.  The weather was chilly, bright with a bit of a breeze but fortunately no rain or hail which had affected the Northern Road Relays just down the road the day before.

The number collection was very slick with none of the usual queues and whilst there were the inevitable lines waiting for the port-a-loos and the baggage drop, the organisation was excellent.

Both the Half and the festival 10k started at the same time and ran the same route for the first few miles before the 10k turned left and headed back towards the finish.  There was also a fun-run for children and it was great to see the little ones (some maybe only 2 or 3 years old) clutching their prizes afterwards.  The start was a little crowded although markers on the side of the road suggested where runners might congregate, based on expected finish time.  There were also numerous pacers, running with flags to help people achieve their desired time.

Eight Holmfirth runners made their way to the start line for the off at 9:30 and the race got underway bang on time.  The profile is fairly flat with the first half being slightly downhill and the second uphill.  Some very good and vocal support along the road by the start thinned out quite quickly although there were pockets of noisy supporters where the route passed twice (on the way out and on the way back again).  There were even a couple of choirs singing their support along the way.

The race is known as a fast course (Holmfirth runners have achieved PBs there in previous years) and so it proved.  The winner came home in 01:02:29 with second at 01:05:48 and third at 01:05:58 which must have been a right tussle in the last few hundred metres (all three in the under 40 age category).  First lady came in at 01:13:19 (second 01:14:23 and third 01:17:22) – all three in the under 35 category.

First Harrier home was Phil Hinchcliffe in 01:16:23 and first lady, Erica Byram in 01:29:15.  The full results are:

Name Pos Chip Time Cat Position Notes
Philip Hinchcliffe 68 1:16:13 54  
Paul Sammonds 141 1:20:07 94 PB
Kevin Dessoy 284 1:25:36 1 PB – 1st V60
Erica Byram 383 1:29:15 18  
Matthew Rose 580 1:34:52 44  
Michael Hall 1064 1:45:05 12 PB
Andrew Clarke 1822 1:58:30 127  
Deborah Clarke 1823 1:58:30 51  

 

Special mentions to Paul, Kevin and Mike who all ran PBs and Kevin for being first vet 60.  Matthew hit his target for the race as did Andy and Deb who were pleased with their performance as Andy suffered an ankle injury at training on Thursday and wasn’t sure he’d be able to make it.

Well done to everyone that took part and here’s to the next one, the Monsal Trail Half on 7th April.

Kevin, Matthew and Paul at the start

Andy and Deb

Phil

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