Ben's Battersea battle
It was 'B of the Bang' on ancient duelling grounds
More than 450 enjoyed a run through Battersea Park in RunThrough's Battersea Park Half Marathon on Saturday (15 January). And no one enjoyed it more than picture star Ben Howe (Dulwich Runners) who covered the 13.1-mile, pancake-flat course in a PB of just 1:10:38.
Battersea Park Half Marathon starts at the Bandstand and comprises a dizzying 8.75 laps of the smooth tarmac roads and paths within this 200-acre green space on the south bank of the River Thames, opposite Chelsea but within the London Borough of Wandsworth.
The park was opened to the public in 1858 and was built on marshland reclaimed from the Thames and land previously used as a market garden. Prior to this change of use, the area was known as Battersea Fields and was a popular spot for settling feuds by duelling!
These days any duels are more likely to be of a sporting nature, thankfully. The men's race on Saturday was not the closest of contests as the winner strode clear by a minute from Alex Carter (Team Bath, 1:11:40) and Jens Sudmeier (Serpentine RC, 1:11:48 PB).
However, the whiff of cordite was in the air during the women's race as Hannah Tyldesley (1:27:12 PB) was quick on the draw, with 12 seconds in hand over Francesca Allard (1:27:24 PB) and 19:15 5K runner Jessica Dring-Morris (Thames Valley Harriers, 1:27:27) - who was making her half-marathon debut.
Top masters times included M50 Simon Baines (Thames Hare & Hounds, 1:13:06) – sixth overall and now number two on the UK M50 rankings – and W50 Kate Worrell (London City AC, 1:37:27), the fastest in her age group so far this year.
There were 453 finishers in 2:43:39 and 77 of those beat 90 minutes; more than 350 were inside two hours.
Full results can be perused via the runABC South race listing here
Image courtesy RunThrough on Facebook