2012 Olympics: Day 9
Events watched: Women's Marathon
There was only a small section of the women's marathon that was ticketed, beside the finish on the Mall. I went with my mum who had been adamant from the start that she needed a ticket for this so that she could be beside a big screen! We couldn't believe it when we managed to get 2 tickets the week before the race and we joked that we had a very civilised experience compared to watching on the rest of the course: a front row spot on the barrier, a big screen behind us, a van to buy cups of tea (much needed after we got a soaking from the rain!) and toilets right beside us.
It had to happen and it did this morning! The rain came down in buckets. A quick scrabble to get on our ponchos but we were soaked and cold. Meanwhile the runners were going through their warm up and probably cursing our weather, with the exception of the British girls. The perceived wisdom is that it's good to run in the rain because it releases oxygen into the air, but I was wondering at what point that's countered by being freezing cold.
British Performance of Day
Freya Murray As she grew up in Edinburgh Freya and her family would come to Run and Become, so we were thrilled to see her running the Olympic marathon! As reserve for the team Freya only found out a week before the race that she would definitely be running. In the end she finished as the top British runner in only her second marathon and came down the Mall with a huge smile on her face.
Loudest Moment of the Day
In many of the distance races on the track the last runner to finish gets just as big a cheer as the first, and the same was true of the marathon. It was clear when Caitriona Jennings from Ireland came through with a lap to go that she was suffering with an injury and I'm sure that many in her position would have called it a day, but she showed true Olympic spirit to tough it out and finish. Her finishing time was 3.22, almost an hour behind the winner and a long way off her best time of 2.36 but the numbers were irrelevant. You sensed the crowd could relate more to her struggle through the second half than we could to the the winners, who make running the speed they do look pretty effortless.
High-five from an Olympic Champion!
The winner Tiki Gelana from Ethiopia, came for a victory lap back down the Mall and we got a high five from her! It was lovely to see up close the joy on her face within minutes of winning Olympic Gold.
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