Thames River Relay 2019

River Relay 8th September 2019 by Frank
Fielding two teams for a ‘point to point’ 5 stage relay from Windsor to Kingston has been on the Clapham Runner club calendar for a few years now.
Each year the weather has been fantastic and it’s a simple event with 70 teams of all standards* ferrying the baton through the five stages. Good to see familiar faces in our teams and for the organisers.

*2:44 for 1st place by Trent Park RC is a high standard but then we’re taking part not setting out to win.

What a thrill to have the ‘closest predicted time’ prize back.  We’ve won once at within 10 seconds, lost once at 12 seconds out but this year it went to The Stragglers’ Paris team at only 4 seconds out.

Pulling in for stage 5 – Ken, Tom W, Niamh, Martin had the Bumblers well placed at 26th as I took the baton from Martin. The Rolling Stoneskicked in with ‘Start Me Up’ and before slipping down 10 places ‘Shattered’ was ringing in my ears to pull in at 3:32 and 36th place – the usual middle of the pack time and place.

More exasperating than competitors overhauling me was the ultra distance Thames Path runner who managed to pass me three times – close to the start, having paused to answer a call of nature and again after a navigational error at Kingston Bridge and he didn’t even stop to say goodbye – just kept going past the finish.

The Amblers:  Phoebe, Carys, Tom L, Solene and Lizzy came in with 3:38.  With Tom L finishing in an impressive 13th place for his stage at 44:22 minute fast but not fast enough to catch the Bumblers.

But then who’s competing …

At last the final stage of my 7 year marathon is complete.  A five stage marathon can take forever. And … now that stage one is different I’ll have to start all over again.

Thank you to all team members. It’s a fun event.  See you next year – same place and date.

Who’s due to complete their five year marathon in 2020?

🖋 Frank

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