Amid the media attention on the elite race at the London Marathon on Sunday, it would have been easy to forget that within the 30,000 strong field there was also a strong Light Blue contingent. They were competing for charity and a new PB, as well as in the BUCS and Varsity marathon competitions, which are folded into the London event.
The story of the day for the Light Blues was Cambridge runner James Hoad’s time of 2:26:17, good enough for 15th place in the non-elite category, and a stunning time for a marathon debutant. Hoad (left) finished just 18 minutes behind Britain’s Mo Farah.
Hoad’s run set a new Varsity marathon record and was more than fast enough to allow the Cambridge orienteering captain to add a marathon Full Blue to the one he gained for cross country in December. It also ensured Cambridge a silver medal in the BUCS championship. The key to Hoad’s performance was a strong second 13 miles, much of which he spent overtaking from just outside the top 30.
This year saw a big turnout of 16 from Cambridge’s Hare and Hounds club. Lorcan Murphy finished 14th in the BUCS race in a time of 2:45:32, despite a recent injury. Not far behind were Bernd Kulhenschmidt (2:55:11) and Tim Roberts (3:02:29). Seb Falk raised well over Â£12,000 for The Cure Parkinson’s Trust, achieving a time of 3:24:36 despite running in a 8ft/5kg replica of the City of London’s Gherkin building. Rebecca Taylor led the way for the Light Blue women, in a time of 3:33:14. Nina Rismal and Diane Esson were not far behind.
This article originally appeared in the Varsity newspaper but was written by our very own Su-Min so we have reclaimed it here.