Athletes 'float' to victory in Clacton Carnival Half Marathon
There was a colourful procession at Clacton-on-Sea Carnival on Sunday (19 August) as 1,000 runners converged on the seafront for the annual Clacton Half Marathon, 10K and Carnival Golden Mile Fun Run. Clacton Carnival has been held every August since 1953 but the races have only been included for the past five years.
Windy conditions prevented any hopes of course records but there was another sub-80 minute winner of the half marathon in Ged McMillan of Colchester Harriers (1:19:47). The M40 master was two minutes outside his best of 1:17:32 set at Colchester two years ago. Closest to the winner on the Essex seafront promenade were James Macdonald (Cambridge Harriers, 1:20:29) and Markus Kilsgaard (Denmark, 1:22:02).
The women's leader board in the half marathon was headed by Faye Beechener (Thrift Green Trotters, 1:34:25), Tammy Jordan (W40 Stowmarket, 1:35:11) and Chloe Green (Dulwich Runners, 1:35:38) as just over a minute covered the top three. More than 80 runners finished inside 1:45:00 and there were just under 400 finishers in 3:11:37.
The 10K started simultaneously with the half marathon but finished after one lap of the flat course on the promenade at the largest town in the Tendring peninsula, with its 1871 pier.
A close men's race was won by Kieran Hayles (Sudbury Joggers, 36:54) from M50 Steven Parry (Ipswich Jaffa, 37:02) and Gary Taylor (37:15) from Felixstowe Road Runners.
Sarah Gruber (W40 Invicta East Kent, 42:48) took the women's prize ahead of Nicola Ranson (W50 Springfield Striders, 46:02) and Sarah Cakebread (Hampstead Tri Club, 48:45). With 50 runners inside 50 minutes there was a tidy look to the results. Sue Sharp and Julie Mead, representing Bioline Agrosciences, completed the 250-strong field in 1:38:32.
With 500 runners last year, this is one of the fastest growing races in Essex and the PB potential of the course is illustrated by half marathon records held by Lewis Chalk (1:17:16) and Nikki Brockbank (1:26:46) and the 10K bests of Paul Whittaker (32:59) and Rachel Doherty (40:49).
Race organisation is in the capable hands of Sussex-based Nice Work who provide chip timing.
Images courtesy Clacton Half Marathon and Clacton Carnival