The runner behind me in 2nd soon catches up and over takes at this point. I keep him in view and just follow his tail for the time being. I am starting to feel quite thirsty and sweating salts, so I take an SCap and drink some diluted coconut water. I should have carried my bladder but I prefer to use it for my much longer distances.
With just a gentle breeze it feels warmer than it actually is...
There is a gentle breeze up here but from the other direction, it still feels very warm...
By now the lead runner is climbing up ahead and is a minute or so from me. I have a few walking breaks on the climbs and try to pick up pace on the flats, but I am feeling worn out already just 15 miles into the course. Lack sleep, long hours at work, the unusual sunshine rays and last weeks 40 mile run, I think has tired my body out some.
I see the lead bike and advise him I will be ok. It is about 5 miles left to go. I have another SCap tablet.
Through some wooded areas and staying on the track, which eventually meets the footpath into Firle Place Estate grounds. This was a last minute diversion to the course, which I only read about after the race.
I ask the marshal here for some water, luckily he has a little left in his bottle for me. Thanking him he directs me to follow the track that meets the road heading through the grounds.
Around the base of some hills before heading back up again for yet another steep climb. The dusty track carries on up, but along the side of the hill before finally reaching Lewes Golf Course. Where for the first time, Lewes can be seen below. It is so close by, but still so high above. This has to be such an owe inspiring sight and knowing the finish has crept up so quickly.
I cannot see any markers so carry on down the very steep road by the golf course until it winds into Lewes. I see a marshal at the bottom of Chapel Hill and then it is straight over to Cliff High Street, where I can see the team clapping and cheering me into the finish, turning left at Rear Yard just by the Tavern.
I see Ruth cheering and wonder how she got here. Sadly she had discomfort in her foot and twisted it on some rock about half way, so had to pull out. She is still in good spirits and really enjoyed what she saw of the route already...
I finish in just over 4 hours on my garmin and I am the 2nd runner to finish. Congratulated by all the support and organisers, some much needed water and then cheering in the third runner.
After freshening up and changing into dry clothes, we wait for Shawn to come into the finish. He had a great run and really enjoyed the day.
After chatting to other runners, a first time marathon runner and the organisers, we head on home and reflect on the success of the tester marathon today.
The team seem very confident that it will become an offical race for 2015 with some slight diversions, perhaps at the Firle Estate and the finish. Suggestions are welcomed as to where the starting area and registration could be held.
I would like to thank the team and fantastic volunteer support for today and supplying the much needed emergency water on such a dry and warm day!
See you in 2015!