So signing up for this race seemed like a good idea at the time, I had been told it was a fast and flat course and definitely had PB potential written all over it, that was until I realised that the middle of January isn’t exactly when you were at your peak for running a half marathon! Despite this the fact that it was sold out within 30 minutes of going on sale did reassure us that it was a race worth doing!
Race day came around very quick, and true to its name it was certainly “brass” the morning of the race, however not quite the minus 2 degrees it was the previous year as we seemed to be reminded on several occasions. Race HQ was at York racecourse, with baggage drop, toilet facilities and any last minute drinks and snacks available – all very organised. We of course arrived with plenty of time in hand and strolled to the start line totally relaxed, and we of coursed definitely did not have a “lovers tiff” because we were so organised, as everyone knows that I don’t like to be organised at all and I am rather laid back when it comes to these things!!!
When we eventually wished each other luck and departed for our individual pens I was amazed at the variety of club vests on show, coming from all over the UK, it was also great to see the North East represented by so many clubs and familiar faces.
Finally we were underway and after the first km we hit the on and only bridge on the whole course, “I must remember that I have to tackle that on the way back” I thought to myself, as well as “Miv told me it was flat!!!”. The course itself was through some nice little villages and then into the countryside before looping back to York Racecourse. I little boring in places but bizarrely flat, perfectly flat in fact and Miv was right – it certainly did have PB potential written all over it. Having got past the half way point pretty comfortably and then hitting 10 miles I realised I was starting to get tired, I had 21 minutes to do 5km, which would bring me under 1:27, something I hadn’t even dreamed of before the race let alone during it! I of course totally forgot that I had to go back over the bridge, which hurt but it is supposed to right? I came across the finish line and couldn’t believe my time, and once I had got my breath (and lungs) back, it started to sink in. Looking at the race picture of me below I am starting to become alarmed at how many times I get pictured looking at my watch, do I just run in that position constantly?
The highlight of the race was to come – having ran 6 half marathons last year, the year after in which she ran her first ever half marathon, Helen crossed the line of her first half marathon of 2017 in 1:59, her first ever sub 2 hour half marathon, something which I know she has been determined to achieve for so long.
So was the Brass Monkey Half marathon worth setting your alarm for 5:50am on a random Sunday morning just to get in? Of course it was – as Miv said “Fast and flat with PB potential!!