My return to this great event was rubber stamped in late September, with an automatic place. It was a personal wish to pay my respects to the events of 12 months previous. Walking down to the registration expedition ,the theme was evident “Boston Strong” People were in good form determined to “bring back the finish line” another theme for the event. A notable feel of spring was in the air although it was cold enough. The 5km race warm up race was held on Saturday morning and with an 8am start, being very cold I was glad to complete in 21:45, a placing of 676 from 8642 who finished it. Was a loop around the park, down Boylston Street starting and finishing on Boston Common Park.
Monday morning Patriots Day arrives and a 5:30 am wakeup call in preparation for the main event. The historic course starts in the rural New England town of Hopkinton. The runners were transported from the city in school buses, a 1 hour journey. I
On arrival to Hopkinston at 8:30am, we were directed to the Athletes village in the secondary school grounds, and everything you possible wanted pre race was readily available.
On arrival it was apparent the weather forecast was correct, warm n sunny, not ideal for the task ahead it must be said.
The race commenced at 10am, along route 135 passing through Ashland, Framingham, Natick & Wellesley to where it joins route 16. The course follows through Newton Lower Falls, to Commonwealth Avenue turning right onto route 30 at the fire station. It continues through Newton Hills, bearing right at the reservoir onto Chestnut Hill Avenue.
The route then turns right onto Hereford Street & left onto Boylston Street, with the finish line at Copley Square.
Off I went from wave 1 coral 7 on a relaxed pace. A timer was placed every km. There were few spectators as the course ran through mostly forest with the small towns scattered. After 2 miles the reality of running two marathons back to back kicked in, how was I going to get through was foremost on my mind. The heat was certainly a factor in this negative thought. Stead pace and no cause for panic the route was rolling out in front of me. Arrived at Wesley College, well there were hundreds of teenage girls hanging across the barriers screaming and shouting holding signs, all of a seductive nature. Sure tradition being I stopped to give 3 girls kiss’es, more time onto the clock!!!
With this much needed inspiration I ploughed on at this stage, facing a continual climb and accent. My mind was turning to “heart break hill” and sure enough it arrived in front of me. Steadily I crossed the summit to a brilliant atmosphere on the decent. The last 5 miles into the city was lined with supporters who could only inspire in my attempts to cross the finishing line. Arrived in Boylston Street crossed the line in 3:30:51 a placing of 9598, reasonably happy with the terrain that was thankfully behind me, the excessive heat compared to last year and the London Marathon 8 days previous.
I plan to return in 2016….
On medal collection I proceeded to collect my baggage. In the afternoon I boarded a bus to New York and met up with my brothers, Edward & Gerard for 2 days.