Kate Marshall was the solo representative of Grantham Running Club at the 100k Thames Path Ultra Challenge.
Following the Thames from Putney Bridge to Henley, the course takes in a variety of landmarks along the way, including the historic Hampton Court Palace and Windsor Castle. The route provided a true snapshot of the river, with families enjoying riverside parks, and swans, rowers and pleasure boats making the most of the water. The event attracted great support from the patrons of the many pubs and restaurants lining the banks of the Thames, while kind-hearted residents provided impromptu water stations along the route.
Having nervously followed the weather forecast of a September heatwave in the week running up to the event, Kate realised that she was going to have to adapt her plans for the day. Running became increasingly challenging as temperatures exceeded 32 degrees during the afternoon, leading Kate to walk more than she had planned during the middle of the day. Even when the sun went down, the weather was not friendly, as the mist fell, and runners found themselves following tracks across grassy flood plains by head torch and guess work.
Although she had to adapt her plans and complete the event over a longer time due to weather conditions, Kate was pleased to have met the challenge of a 100k point to point event and clocked a time of 21:36:58.
First finisher was Henry Hart in a frankly jaw-dropping finish time of 07:48:00.