Earlier this year I was asked/told by my wife that we were going to Llanberis in late October as she was running the Snowdon Marathon Eryri and that I would be taking photographs of her and her running club friends. Now you will possibly have noticed that I don’t do many sporting events and although I wasn’t an official race photographer at the event I managed to get into a couple of really nice spots to capture the event.
Knowing that many of the roads would be closed to cars, I decided that the best form of transport would be my bike (its a bit old, but still goes really well…unlike me!). Cycling around Snowdon is no mean feat in itself and I think I was lucky not to give myself a hernia on the away up one of the roads. Anyhow, I survived the ride and got into position to photograph the first runners. I didn’t have long to wait as I think some of them were rocket propelled. 15 minutes to get 2 ½ miles into an extremely challenging marathon….possibly the toughest road marathon in the country, at that. A steady stream of runners passed and I managed to capture nearly all of my wife’s running club friends along with a few others. A quick check of the watch told me I would only have about 20 minutes to get back to Llanberis to see my son take part in one of the junior races…I wished for the last of the marathon runners to hurry passed. They did and I was off back down the mountain again and back just in time.
Taking part in the u10 race my youngest would do a short route through the town and back again. They were off and we waited in anticipation for them to return. Flying around the final corner was the first runner, followed moments later by my boy. Camera forgotten as cheering and encouragement overtook. The finish line came just a few meters to soon as he was pipped into a very good second place. Very proud dad and grandparents and an indifferent brother congratulated him on his run.
Over the finishing line
As you probably know, marathons are a long way and take quite while to complete, especially when they are around a mountain! First place came in after about two and half hours. It was until a few seconds after the 3hr mark though that Cwm Ogwr Running Club had its first finisher. Delight and disappointment in equal measures at finishing, but just missing out on a sub 3hr time. Still what an amazing time and to think I almost missed him because he decided to wear a Superman top instead of the club vest. The finish line was a buzz with excitement and emotion as runners ran, fell, crawled and, some even had the energy to, jump over the line for the next 3hrs.
I guess I should confess that although a 4 hour journey there and back wasn’t the greatest I actually enjoyed my weekend away and got some great ‘once in a lifetime’ photographs of some of my wife and her friends. From time to time you might see some more sports photographs on my page. Who knows, maybe I will branch out…
If looking at this blog inspires you and you want to take up running to either get fit or just meet new friends then give my wife club a try. They are quite friendly.
*click image to enlarge.