Smale's pace suffices in Southend
Havens Hospices Half Marathon is a breeze for 1,500
There was a home town winner of the Havens Hospices Southend Half Marathon on Sunday (12 June) as Southend AC member and local schoolteacher David Smale powered home – literally – in 1:10:05 to take a popular victory at East Beach, Shoeburyness.
Course knowledge certainly helped as the Shoeburyness Garrison resident raced past his home and The Old Garrison pub in the closing stages of a warm and windy 13.1-mile race in aid of Havens Hospices, providing palliative nursing and supportive care to adults, young people, and children living with complex or incurable conditions across Essex.
The 2022 champion beat his recorded best (1:11:58) set at the Vitality Big Half last year and he is now targeting the TCS London Marathon in October, where his best from 2021 (2:34:44) is due for some revision.
“Knowing the roads and the course definitely helps, especially for the last mile, when you’re running through the Garrison,” said Smale after his success. “It’s nice because you hear more people cheering for you when it’s your home race and I run on those roads every day too, which helps. I live in the Garrison, so I’m always out running round here and I teach at Chalkwell Hall too, so it was nice to have a few of the kids out watching as well.”
The first runners-up in the men's race were Fredryk Krylander (Cambridge & Coleridge AC, 1:12:46 PB) and Ben Bayly (Durham University Cross Country Club, 1:13:38) as 1,545 finished in 4:52:06.
The women's race also saw a local athlete enjoying the sweet taste of success as Stephanie Migliorini (Leigh-on-Sea Striders, 1:25:38) raced half a mile clear of the pack. Robyn Matson (Havering AC, 1:29:21) and W55 Jo Kent (Barnet & District AC, 1:29:47) completed the female podium among the 90 athletes who went sub-90 minutes.
The race details are at the Havens Hospices Southend Half Marathon website here
Previous results and race reports are at runABC South race listing here
Image courtesy Havens Hospices Southend Half Marathon