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Seville Marathon

22/02/2015

After the dramas she experienced at the start of last year's Seville marathon, Dumfries Running Club's Jo Zakrzewski has avoided races with mass starts, but the race organisers kindly invited her back this year to try to put her demons to rest...

Race day dawned with a clear sky and it already boded better than last year with Jo managing this time to get the right bus to the start and so she had time to make sure she was at the edge of the field rather than in the middle. There was the usual mayhem associated with the start of a race containing 11,500 participants, but Jo managed to knock away the hands of those trying to push her on and over the line.

Having not started her watch at the start (as her main focus was getting round in one piece rather than aiming for a specific time) Jo settled into a steady pace with a small bunch of men just a few metres ahead. Locals seemed to be joining the race along the way to pace a man in this group so Jo made it her aim to stick with the group until halfway if possible.

At the halfway point, she spotted a Swedish lady and her pacer up ahead and so made keeping them in sight her target for the next 10k.

A cool shady park at 35k gave a welcome respite from the sun, but it was followed by a tight circuit round the Plaza de España, where the tiled surface seemed to reflect the rays. The last few miles wound through the centre of Seville so although there was great support, it was important to stay focussed as streets became narrow and tram tracks could easily catch tired feet. 

The final 200m is run on a track in the stadium and so the clock was visible over the finish line. Once she'd spied it, Jo knew she could push to duck under the 2:41 mark, and so happily finished (in 1 piece this year) in 10th place in a time of 2:40:56... demons well and truly faced and with the bonus of currently topping the UK marathon rankings.

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