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Barcelona Half Marathon

17/02/2013

On Sunday February 17, Jo Zakrzewski, along with 15,000 other runners, took to the streets of Barcelona, to compete in the Mitja Half Marathon. The race came at an ideal time for her to see how her training was progressing, and was also an excuse to check out the facilities and some of the route of her planned Spring marathon...

An early race start (8:45am) meant conditions were rather cool after overnight rain. Even though the start was on a very wide boulevarde, runners were divided into two waves to avoid excessive congestion. Jo set off in a crowd and so initially had to run the corners wide, but the runners soon spread out, and as she headed down towards the Arc de Triomf (encouraged by a Saltire-waving Doug Brown) she had the third lady in her sights. 

The other lady put in a burst to push away, but Jo sensibly ran her own race and reeled her back before the 10k mark, ensuring the "3rd Lady" cyclist was her companion for the rest of the course. Jo really enjoyed the race, though the smell of freshly cooked churros at 15k were less than welcome, as was a sneaky incline at 18k and the 3 "false" finishing gantries.

The sun was shining to welcome runners home as Jo ran in for 122nd overall - 3rd lady - in a new DRC record of 77:02. The race was won by Eliud Kipchoge of Kenya in an amazing 60:04 and the the Ethiopian Atsede Baysa took the ladies' title in 67:33.

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