The ASICS Fleet Pre-London Half Marathon is well on course for another capacity entry of 3,500 runners for the 37th edition on Sunday, 18 March 2018. Enter before 1 January and you will be in with a chance of winning back your entry fee!
Elite athletes who have graced this classic race include Steve Jones (former world marathon record holder), Gary Staines, Bernie Ford, Marian Sutton, Ann Ford and Paula Fudge. The 'Pre-London' title was approved by the founder of the London Marathon, Chris Brasher and has been retained ever since 1982.
The modern Fleet Half Marathon welcomes runners of all abilities and levels of ambition from serious marathoners putting the finishing touches to their preparation to charity fundraisers and even a few fancy dress exponents like our pictured runner from 2014.
This race is a real 'must' for many local runners – organised entirely by Fleet & Crookham AC and their amazing volunteers – over 300 smiling volunteers will help you in some way on race day. This event really is the epitomy of grass roots club running – runners putting something back into the sport they love and sharing it with others.
New for 2018, the Fleet Mini Half Marathon is aimed at celebrating younger athletes. The Junior Mile Fun Run is open to athletes aged between 8-16. Finishing on the half marathon finish line, surrounded by crowds of local supporters, all junior finishers will get a medal and T-shirt as they achieve their goal.
The official race charites are Hearing Dogs for Deaf People (come and meet some of their gorgeous dogs on the day) and Bloodwise, who have been associated with the race since it started. For 2018 the event is also supporting: 'Sgt. Steppers Homeless Hearts Club Band', who will be running the race, entertaining runners and supporters and raising money for local homeless charities Step by Step and Crisis (and potentially setting a world record).
The race route follows a loop around Fleet and then out into rural roads through surrounding villages before returning to Calthorpe Park for the finish. There is a revision to the final two miles this year making them flatter and faster. The 2017 winners were Michael Kallenberg (RAF, 1:07:21) and Lesley Locks (Hart RR, 1:20:59) and there were 2,648 finishers in 3:17:23.
A few entries are still available at £25 representing good value for this traditional pipe opener for the Spring marathon season. Full details are available at the race website
Image courtesy Fleet Pre-London Half Marathon