Steve went up North on Sunday 22nd November 2009 to run in the Newcastle Town Moor Marathon.
This was Newcastle’s first ever city centre marathon, raced on a flat, traffic-free 5 laps over good footpaths running through & around its historic Town Moor.
The North East Veterans Athletic Club were very kindly given permission to run within the historic Town Moor by Newcastle City Council and the Freemen of the City to whom they are very grateful.
This is a large area of public parkland less than 1 mile to the North of the City Centre. It is enclosed by The Great North Rd (B1318)
Steve had a very good write up in the Marathon introduction:-
“The inaugural Newcastle Town Moor Marathon succeeded in attracting many of the country’s most prolific marathon runners to the event.
33 of the limited entry field of 114 runners belong to the UK’s 100 Marathon Club, a club specifically for those who have completed in excess of 100 marathons.
Race Co-organiser and 100 Club member Jim Manford ran his 128th marathon on the day, while 4 of his clubmates taking part have each run in excess of 500 marathons to date.
Among these is Steve Edwards, Double World Record Holder for both the “Most Number of Marathons in a Year” (87) and Winner of the “10 Marathons in 10 Days Challenge” (2008) Steve has run most of his marathons at sub 3 hours 15 min. pace and is hoping for a similar time on Sunday.
Notable among the veteran runners are 100 Clubbers John Dawson and Colin Poole, both well into their 70’s and both still running 30 to 40 marathons a year in times that would embarrass many of their younger competitors.”
Steve was again racing for Bourton Roadrunners with Race Number 86 and here is his Race Report:-
“The inaugural Town Moor marathon starting and finishing in Exhibition Park consisted of running 5 laps of the surrounding moor on traffic free footpaths. We were warned about what the weather could be like on the moor in advance and they weren’t wrong! The course itself was no more than mildly undulating, but the fact that it was so exposed meant we were in for a very hard race as we battled against strong headwinds for over a mile on each of the laps. Mile markers were only every 5 miles so it was a little more difficult to judge pace but having passed through the first 5 miles in just under 35min, I was about where I wanted to be. I started the 2nd lap in 5th place but soon moved into 4th as the first of many runners dropped out. Hitting 10 miles in just under 70min and starting lap 3, I saw that I was slowly but surely catching the guy in front and by the beginning of lap 4 passed him to move up into 3rd. However, I was beginning to tire myself now, the wind was just getting stronger as the day progressed and at times it felt like you could hardly move.
My pace had definitely slowed as I passed through 20 miles in just under 2:20 and the shout of ‘last lap’ from the marshals was indeed music to my ears.
With no-one close behind, I knew that a steady pace to the finish would see me hang on to 3rd place. That was until I saw the guy in front slowing rapidly which gave me the extra incentive I needed to give it one last effort over the remaining few miles. Moving into 2nd place I began to think I could perhaps go all the way, but seeing the lead runner pass down the opposite side of a dog leg section on the final stretch, I knew he was about 5 minutes ahead so maybe not! In the end I was really pleased to finish 2nd in a time of 3:04:36 given the conditions.
That’s 32 marathons this year of which 14 have been sub 3:05 but with just 2 more left to do in 2009, I am definitely starting to look forward to my week off running in December.”
Bourton Roadrunners www.bourtonroadrunners.co.uk
Source: Steve Edwards & North East Veterans Athletic Club