Beachy Head Marathon

Harriers is renowned for being a social club. But every social club has some nutters in it. We might already know a few of them, Dave Hadaway, Mike King, for example, but the entry list to Beachy Head on a windy, wet late October morning revealed a few more. In fact another 10. An amazing 12 turnout. Probably would’ve won the team prize…
Starting with a segment titled ‘Suicide Hill’ gives you a flavour of the parcours. Add to the mix of over 1,100m of climbing, some descents comprising brick and rock paths and a 40km wind and you’ve got at best a marathon, and at worst a madhouse.
It was fantastically organised with COVID security, excellent signage, Marshalls and refreshments. In fact a positive of COVID being water bottles and not cups!
Special mention goes to all 7 sisters who conspired to ruin us all from 30km onwards. They did a good job.
A crazy marathon, superb trail and I’m really glad I did it. Not the sort you’d do chasing a time but a reminder there are some amazing races out there where time is not everything.
Albeit the winner still managed an outrageous 2.40!
A final Shout out for all amazing shout outs on course. Spectating was discouraged so was a good coincidence people were walking the route at the same time….Fran (Alex J’s girlfriend) with some great support and also to my kids, with my 3yo William stealing my Cornish pasty at the end.
Rumours suggest Sonja King was too busy grabbing a coffee on the Promenade (in her defence it was a long wait for Mike).
Results (Positions are a bit confusing with wave start but I’ve done ‘net’ as best as I can)
1. Peter Huck (Barrow in Furness) 2.41.02 (Officially ridiculous)
4. Ben Cole (TAC) 3.02.
20. Emma Davis (Fulham-  First Lady) 3.24.23
22. Patrick Bareham 3.25.01
33. Alex Jeffreys 3.32.26
160. Anthony Brown 4.18.52
170. Mike King 4.20.31
180. Dave Hadaway 4.22.18
271. Louise Hazelton 4.36.12
325. Danny Winson 4.44.16
388. Hugh Stephenson 4.54.11
462. Anna Marie Green 5.02.50
632. Rose Sawyer 5.28.51
634. Amanda Bruneau 5.29.09 (An amazing 96th marathon)
682. Derek Harrison 5.35.51
Congrats all


Well done to everyone who completed Beachy Head on Saturday, and to everyone else who ran one of the other versions of this famous event, including the new half marathon. The organisers worked hard to get the event to take place and all of the arrangements worked well.  The course doesn’t get any easier although the last but one hill on the way up to Beachy Head was removed, and instead we ran along the side of the road.

The rain held off but the wind was horrendous, actually stopping my forward progress on several occasions. It was never going to be quick for me and I was going ok until Exceat, when the wheels fell off.  Walking up and jogging down the Seven Sisters to Birling Gap, I found that the checkpoint had been moved a mile further on.  On reaching this I sat down and had a 5 minute rest.  I felt better after this and had a reasonable run to the finish.  Finished in 5:35:52, probably slowest ever, but who cares?