The seventh Ealing Half Marathon yesterday (Sunday 30 September) was notable for Jonathan Poole's retention of the men's title; Rachel Thomas' breakthrough victory in the women's race and the 4,000 finishers who make Ealing such a special event in the South of England calendar.
Lammas Park was bathed in glorious autumnal sunshine as the 4,000 starters set off in the award-winning half marathon. It was reported that runners from 30 different countries were present to enjoy the fully closed roads course through the leafy West London streets.
Last year's winner Jonathan Poole (Serpentine Running Club, 1:09:02) was pushed to the limit by Paul Martelletti (Victoria Park Harriers, 1:09:09) who was fresh from a brilliant 2:17:29 Berlin Marathon two weeks ago. Ollie Garrod (Epsom and Ewell Harriers, 1:09:35) was third, just missing his 1:09:19 PB set in Copenhagen last year.
The women’s race featured considerable advancements for the top three finishers, as Rachel Thomas (Victoria Park Harriers, 1:20:29 PB) saw off challenges from Josie Hinton (London Heathside, 1:21:39 PB) and Martha Lloyd (Victoria Park Harriers, 1:22:06 PB).
Among the visitors from overseas were a group of runners from Ealing’s twin town Marcq-en-Barœul in France, who had made their annual trip to experience the #EalingFeeling. Many runners were raising money for charity, including Alzheimer’s Society and Cancer Research UK. The race was started by popular endurance runner Susie Chan and Friend of Ealing Half Marathon, Lisa Emerson, who then joined in to complete her seventh Ealing half marathon.
Ealing Half Marathon followed a hugely successful Ealing Mini Mile on Saturday 29 September, sponsored by St Augustine’s Priory, with 1,700 entries from young runners aged 6-16, who completed their own race in Lammas Park. For the first time the event included a Family Mini Mile for children aged 5 and under, which proved to be a fantastic precursor to the half marathon race day.
Race director Sandra Courtney said: “The 2018 Ealing Half Marathon has been an overwhelming success, congratulations to every single person who crossed the finish line today. We were delighted with the turnout on this beautiful autumn day and would like to thank all our runners and spectators for making this seventh anniversary event so special. It was amazing to welcome runners from so many different countries again and Ealing has been buzzing with excitement all weekend!