What a day for Bovey Valley Runners. COVID has stopped a lot, but not the enthusiasm of their runners.
Six members signed up to the Virtual London Marathon & the club committee facilitated a COVID-secure event allowing club members to join in on the momentous day. Based at Bovey Tracey Football Club the runners set out for the first of five out & back routes around Bovey Tracey.
8am saw the start of the run with runners returning after each leg for much needed fuel before heading back out.
Along the way club members achieved many personal bests with several first half marathons and two club members pushed through to achieve an unplanned marathon distance. The support shown within the club was truly inspirational.
Leg one to three flowed by quite easily. Runners looked strong at the start of leg four with ten miles left to go.
First time marathon runner Jacqui Baker, the clubs chair, recalls her experience of mile 20. The wall! Never have I felt anything like it. You read about it; others tell you about it but this was the hardest run I’ve ever done. I cried & felt sick, but I wasn’t giving up. Jacqui came in at a fine 4:52:34 for her first ever marathon.
Meanwhile runners Stuart Webster & Chris Wotton were making small work of the 26 miles. Stuart returned in a phenomenal time of 3 hrs 14 mins with Chris following him, coming in at 3:58:50. This was a tremendous achievement for Chris as he is currently undergoing treatment for cancer.
The determination continued; every runner pushed themselves to achieve their own marathon. Maurice Raymont recalls how excruciatingly painful the last mile was but despite this he returned with a great time of 4:40:44
Caragh Mellit was due to run the original London Marathon & despite returning from injury she completed a strong run coming in at 4:54:11.
Alice Mann, the clubs run co-ordinator, planned the days routes completing her marathon in a supporting role, keeping all the runners motivated and on track. Her time was 4:56:02.
A day the club will remember for some time.