Axe Valley Runners complete marathon in London and back at home

By Francesca Evans

24th Apr 2023 | Running

Axe Valley Runners were out in force at the London Marathon on Sunday.

A total of 15 club members completed the 26.2 mile race around the capital, with two more undertaking the same distance back at home, completing it on Seaton seafront.

In London, the first Axe Valley Runner (AVR) to complete the route was Terry Emmett, who paced his race perfectly to finish in 500th in an excellent 2:38.34, 87th M40.  

Duncan Staddon finished in 2:48.08 and Matt Hewer in 2:58.37. 

Despite a recent spate of injuries, Rob Collier finished in a brilliant 3:06.22, and Rupert Pady was next AVR home in 3:17.50.

Kerry Board, running her first London Marathon finished in an excellent eight minute marathon personal best of 3:37.17, while Karen Eyre completed it in 3:39.01 – a London best for him.

Alan Hornibrook completed his 13th London Marathon in 3:54.01, an impressive 81st M65.

Rob Gibson, raising money for Seaton Primary School following his success in the club ballot, finished in 4:08.05.

Club chair Haydn Boehm and Wayne Tooze ran together, raising funds for the charity Brain Research, finishing in 4:05.04 and 4:05.05.  

Angela Kerr, running an incredible 14th London Marathon and her 48th marathon in total, finished in 4:37.52 and 57th F65 to comfortably retain her good-for-age place.

Ferenc Kovacs came in in 4:50.41 for his first non-virtual marathon, Tracey Anning-Beckett finished in 5:07.16 while Kathryn Thompson, who has also had to overcome serious injury and illness, finished in 5:48.18.

Almost 50,000 runners completed the marathon, which was won in a new course record of 2:01.25 by Kelvin Kiptum of Kenya.  

The women's race was full of drama with Sifan Hassan of the Netherlands taking the win in 2:18.33 on her marathon debut, despite looking to be suffering from a hip injury during the race.

Axe Valley Runners Mark Day and Louise Rawlins enjoyed lots of support from fellow club members pacing, cheering and a finish line welcome at the end of Seaton Esplanade, worthy of The Mall itself.  

Mark finished in a personal best of 4:56.52 while Louise completed her first ever marathon, having only started running two years ago, in a creditable 5:11.24.

In the Mini London Marathon on Saturday, local teenager Innes Fitzgerald successfully defended her title with another dominating performance finishing a full 15 seconds ahead of the second placed runner on the 2.6k course. 

Boston Bonanza

Tim Sibley travelled to the USA to take part in one of the 'Marathon Majors', the famous Boston Marathon which takes place annually on Patriots Day. 

He completed it in 3:33.09, which was a great time on a tough course made all the more challenging with the wind and rain.  

AVRs dominate Seaton parkrun

AVR had a great day at Seaton parkrun this week with Rich Hardy coming in as first finisher just a week after completing the Newport Marathon.  His 16:58 also placed him second on age-grade.  Luke Reed nabbed second spot in 17:53.

First female was Deborah Whiston in 20.05.  Top on age-grade was Eleanor Wood with an amazing 91% for her 22:53 finish.  

There were also personal bests for Jason Potter in 20:53; Steve Lewis, again a week after running Manchester Marathon, in 24:53; Elaine Chesterman in 33:07 and Liz Curley in 34:18. 

On the road, Sam Miller and Tony Smith nabbed their V for the club's alphabet challenge at Victoria Docks parkrun, which was alive with pre-marathon fever.  

Dave Hutton and Sue Chambers were at Isabel Trail (grabbing their I) while Tim, Amie and James Sibley took part in Fletcher's Cove parkrun in Washington while in the USA for the Boston Marathon. 


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