Monthly Archives: June 2014

Malvern Midsummer Marathon 2014

The start point

The start point

The Malvern Midsummer Marathon 2014 took place on 21st June with a slightly different course to 2013 – an additional hill. My aim was to be faster than last year and under 7 hours – this was achieved with a time of 6 hours 54 minutes. The fastest man was 4 hours 32 minutes and the fastest woman 4 hours 58 minutes. It was a sunny day and a bit on the hot side in some of the exposed places. It will be interesting to see how this affects the overall finish times. We were

At the start, yes, very sunny

At the start, yes, very sunny

going quite slowly for the last 7 miles but surprisingly overtook more than we were overtaken by, the Malvern Midsummer marathon 2014 results will be out in a few days – I’ll update this page then.

If you are wondering why the times are so high for a marathon then below is the elevation profile which is part of the reason. Interestingly, I gained more elevation walking from my car to the start point than I would have gained during the whole of the London Marathon! And I had to go back for my sunglasses! The other reason for the slowness is the dense vegetation in places, plus gates and stiles to negotiate. The stiles become quite painful to get over near the end.

Malvern Marathon 2014 Profile

There are two starts to the Malvern Midsummer Marathon, “walkers” and an hour later “runners”. Last year we started with the walkers but this year the runners. There is significant advantage in going with the runners and letting someone else trample all of the vegetation early on! Here we are going up the Old Wyche Road at the start. It may look like we were in the lead, but this is just a cunning bit of photography from Gavin. The field had already been split in the first few hundred yards into those who were trying (probably failing?) to run all the way up the Old Wyche Road and those who weren’t even trying… We were in the latter camp.

The last two thirds of the field on the Old Wyche Road

The last two thirds of the field on the Old Wyche Road

Not sure if the photos do full justice to the steepness?

Not sure if the photos do full justice to the steepness?

Now, a bit of analysis. We made good time over the initial stages before the heat and the cramp started to take effect. The following two graphs show how far in front of the 2013 time we were and a comparison of the time for each mile. Mile 13 was much quicker because we didn’t stop for a scalding cup of tea at Ledbury this year….

I’ve done variants of this course four times now, the trend in times is in the right direction. I’ll be back next year!