Report from Joanna Hobson
I’ve got to admit that I was originally attracted to this race for no other reason than I love hedgehogs! However, having looked in to the details further and seen that it was located at Normanby Hall Country Park in North Lincolnshire (close to my Mother in Law), a flattish course and in aid of St Andrews Hedgehog Hospital I decided to make the trip over to Normanby.
This race was organised by Curly’s Athletes and was the first running of this race. It was an all on road half marathon starting and finishing in the beautiful grounds of Normanby Hall Country Park, following the route of The Tour of Britain course from 2017. The route followed a northerly loop around the local villages and was really well supported by the locals. Curly’s Athletes had done an amazing job informing all of the local residents about the race and they came out in force to support the relatively small group (450) of athletes with buckets full of sweets and various other goodies!
For those that have done the Norton 9, it was a very similar style race route including the strong cross winds. Having set off at 9.00am with a temperature of 2.5 degrees, I really felt the cold and wished I’d worn longer shorts, but hey hoy the race must go on. As I’m still a half marathon novice and with rather less training in my legs than I should have I tried to keep a steady pace going. The first half of the course flew by and I was feeling really quite good so was hoping for a PB. Then at mile 8 we started a mile long climb up a gentle incline and my legs stared to feel it. By this stage my legs still hadn’t warmed up and I felt numb from my thighs downwards. But somehow, my legs kept going, and my watch was telling me I was doing OK. So I kept going and kept feeling hopeful!
At the 12 mile marker I knew the PB was on, so started to relax and enjoy myself again. I finally finished in a time of 1:55:50 ( a PB by 4 minutes) and was placed 115 out of 390 finishers.
1st male overall was Alberto Legido in a time of 1:19:42 and first female was Gemma Bell in a time of 1:33:29
This was a low key fun half marathon and I will definitely do it again if it is organised again in the future. Well done to Curly’s Athletes for organising.
Full results here