The day before the Reading Half Marathon went something like this.
Parkrun in the morning with my Start to Runners. It’s minus degrees C, it’s windy, there is a sprinkling of snow and they are using the alternative route due to flooding. Not so perfect conditions but good to put my race day clothes to the test!
The 5k parkrun is hard, I lose feeling in my hand (thanks Reynauld’s!), the wind comes in icy blasts, but we finish it and we are all smiling! Hoorah!
Once home the rest of the day follows this pattern.
Check Twitter, Fleet Half Marathon is cancelled due to weather.
Whatsapp message to say Banbury 15 is cancelled.
The Reading Half website says they are monitoring the situation.
Check Facebook to see that the Richmond Half is cancelled.
Twitter says the Grizzly is cancelled (but the Cub is going ahead).
UK Athletics issue a statement that races should “give serious consideration to the impact that the weather will place on the welfare of the runners, and any staff, volunteers, stewards etc. involved”.
Reading, however, is still going ahead.
I commence with my carb loading (pasta and cake anyone?) and relax by watching Frankie Drake Mysteries and Poirot.
Just before going to bed I check the Reading website. It’s still going ahead, unless the weather seriously deteriorates overnight.
Day of the race
Wake up at 6am, check the race website and social media. No new statement. Look out of the window and there is a few centimeters of snow.
Carry on getting ready. Check for updates as I eat my toast. Check alternative driving routes that don’t involve smaller non gritted roads.
Take my pup out for his morning walk.
Get back, get ready to leave, check for updates and BAM!
The Reading Half Marathon is cancelled.
This is the second half marathon I have entered in less than 4 months that is cancelled due to snow! All that training! All that pasta and cake!
It was a late cancellation but I can see why the organisers waited. Reading is a big city marathon, they had put extra gritters out on the roads to keep them clear, the weather forecast said ‘light snow’, they put up more tents at the start to keep runners warm and, according to Twitter, the snow didn’t start until after 1am.
It’s hugely disappointing to me and many other runners that the weather conspired against us but with over 15000 runners due to turn up the organisers had to weigh up disappointment with safety. And, to be honest, I’m glad I didn’t have to drive for over an hour in the snow.
So, instead of running today I am sat at home drinking tea, watching Miss Fisher’s Murder Mysteries, working on some long overdue sewing projects and wondering if I dare enter another half marathon this year or if there will be some freak weather that will stop me running all my 2018 races!
How about you? Have you ever had a race cancelled due to weather?
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