On Saturday morning Meg and I took a walk over Crack’s Hill towards Yelvertoft, hoping to find Les and Jaq on NB Valerie. They were there on Wednesday, but nowhere to be seen by Saturday. We’ll catch up with them somewhere ahead, I guess.
Misty morning from Crack’s Hill
I pottered about through the rest of the morning, watched the F1 qualifying at Monza, then got my head down for an hour or so later in the afternoon. We were in bed by just before 10, ready for the long day on Sunday.
Up at 2, on the road at 03:10 we saw the sun rise as we headed north on the A1. What we didn’t expect to see was it set again as we travelled back south! We got back at about a quarter past eight, after a rough 5 hour trip back down from South Shields.
The Great North Run went well though, another enjoyable day with a great atmosphere. It was a bit warm, in complete contrast to last year’s wet, cool and breezy conditions.
Parked up about a mile from the finish line, looking out to sea on a glorious Sunday morning.
From near here I caught a shuttle bus into Newcastle city centre, then had a ¾ mile walk to the start, cutting through the university.
Following the crowds of runners through the campus
The university was established in 1834 as a School of Medicine and Surgery, and still has some fine period buildings on the campus.
The start assembly area on the central motorway. It stretches back from the start line for well over half a mile.
My time was relatively slow this year, just over 2 hours. I’ve always reckoned that if I can run a race in less than twice the time taken by the winner, then I’m doing OK. Mo Farah won in just an hour, so I’ve got a bit more work to do for the next one…
My sponsorship target of £500 for Macmillan Cancer Support hasn’t been reached yet – still time to contribute, folks. I’ve done my bit…
I didn’t go into the history books as the one millionth finisher in the Great North Run. I’d have had to been even slower. Tracey Cramond was an hour behind me.
After such a long day I was glad to see my pillow last night. No real aches and pains this morning, just a sore heel that I bruised early on in my training schedule and which has been a niggling injury for the last few weeks.
I took the car back to Enterprise this morning. It was a 2 litre turbo-diesel Vauxhall Insignia, a nice car, but I think it’s unnatural that a car that size should average better than 50 mpg! Our last cars would be struggling to achieve half that! Consequently there was too much fuel in it when I took it back, but they kindly gave me a credit note for the difference. Nice one, Enterprise.
A wash load was run while we were still plugged in, then I topped up the water tank, emptied a loo and was just about to set off when our recent lock-partner, Pete (NB Sarah) turned up to do some work on his boat, and we chatted for half an hour.
On the service wharf.
Out of the marina, directed by Jane, our erstwhile neighbour, checking for oncoming traffic, and we were on our way, heading north.
Crack’s Hill from the canal.
We didn’t go so far, batteries are fully charged from the shoreline and an easy day was called for, so we pulled in on a sunny spot just past Bridge 17.
Yelvertoft Marina is just around the corner, and it looks like development work is still in progress. Opposite us is a sign “New Slipway for 2014” with a mini digger aimlessly moving muck about. It’ll be interesting launching boats from it, between a bend and a bridge…
Locks 0, miles 1