I did this race in April 2016 and it has taken me 3 months to actually write this race report! Thankfully, this race was a really positive experience so all the salient points are still in my mind!
The race took place on a sunny but mild April Sunday – perfect running weather! I had only recently come back from an ITB injury but felt that I had a pretty good chance of running a 10 mile PB as I had done some training runs in Richmond Park with a speedy friend at my running club which would have been a 10 mile PB for me!
The race started on a grass field adjacent to the Thames Towpath and the start required us to run a lap of grass which was a little annoying. The course then followed the Thames towpath. It is a really beautiful route and also had the advantage of having lots of shade. The Towpath is not particularly wide so the route was fairly congested at points- I always had someone running to the side of me and close to me for the whole 10 miles.
I had decided I would start of by running 7:30 m/m pace and see how long I could keep that going. However, I didn’t really look at my watch constantly throughout the race. Instead, I just focused on my form- cadence and arm swing.
The race marshalls were fantastic – super enthusiastic and encouraging. The race route went onto the pavement in Kew before rejoining the towpath, passing Kew Gardens, which I loved because it is a route I run regularly.
The race finished in the same field as it had started and before we got to the finish funnel we once again had to run approximately 400m on the grass. By this time I was aware that if I sprinted I would have a sub 1:15 finish which meant I had averaged sub 7:30 m/m for 10 miles! I sprinted my heart out and finished in 74:16 – a massive 7 minutes and 5 seconds quicker than my previous 10 mile PB run in 2013!
Overall, a brilliant little race – really well organised and fantastic value for money. There were no medals but instead we got a race personalised Fullers pint glass! Amazing! I don’t drink beer but I have used my Towpath 10 momento multiple times! Would I do it again? DEFINITELY!
Overall, this race is definitely a 9/10 for me. The only thing stopping it being a 10/10 for me was probably the grass laps!