Training hard for the Chester half in just under 6 weeks, I decided to do the Sheffield half as part of my preparation, however events took a different course as you may have heard.
We lined up ready for the off when the first of a number of delays announcements told us there would be a 30 minute delay in starting the event, they didn’t tell us why!! Not the news
you want to hear having got yourself warmed up and ready for the off on a cool spring morning. We weren’t told of any further delay but after 40/45 minutes they finally they told us the race had been cancelled, because of lack of water!!
We all looked at each other in disbelief then someone suggested we do it anyway and as I needed the miles so I set off with them in this race that never was. The police tried to prevent us running in the early stages so we took off our race numbers and carried on running on the pavement not the road (no law against that). The police tried once again to stop us by a big roundabout/junction where there were no pavements where the official route was, but we just by-passed them anyway by slightly detouring!!
I wasn’t really taking it too seriously until I got to Ecce Road (about 6 miles in) and only then realised the police had kind of given up trying to stop us, I’d been trying to be a good boy and not run on the roads and even went under an underpass roundabout instead of over it, though at about 5 miles I was told off by a marshal for running on the pavement!!!
By this time I had threw my number in a bin at 4 miles and then a bit later kind of realised I needed it to get my bag back so at 9 miles, so came off the course (when in 4th place) and rummaged in the bin, picked a number up and then carried on running, at this point my hamstring tweaked, but I stupidly carried on and had to jog the last mile. Then when I opened the screwed up number to get my bag, it wasn’t mine!!!
The crowds were brilliant, water everywhere, and such great support but this farce makes Sheffield a laughing stock given also the rubble that used to be Don Valley was clear for everyone to see too!!!
I laughed when I saw on the news that the police said they “let us run” after trying to stop us twice. Most people in the “race” didn’t realise that anything was amiss as the announcements were so quiet and just thought the race had started normally!!