Strabane runners feel the heat in London

Bronagh O Doherty

STRABANE runners at last weekend’s London Marathon have spoken of the challenging conditions they faced.

Bronagh O’Doherty (31), a self-confessed “non-runner,” took part in the event to raise funds for the Anthony Nolan Trust, whilst running fanatic Ken Jones (85) embarked on his 38th London Marathon. Both agreed it was hot, as in fact it was: This year’s race was the hottest on record.

More than 40,000 runners took part in the race amid temperatures of 24.1˚C, which were recorded at St James’s Park.

“It was tough – painful at times,” remarked Bronagh O’Doherty, who was running her first 26 miler. “I came in at six hours and 50 minutes which was way longer than I had anticipated.

“But people were dropping all around. You can see some with drips in their arms by the side of the road – it was scary.

“I’ve never done something that I’ve hated and loved at the same time. 

“It was tough – so hot – but the atmosphere and the crowds were inspirational; they kept me going. 

“It was all worth it. It was life-changing.”

Running in memory of her late friend, Aiden McAteer, Bronagh has to date raised over £2,600 for the Anthony Nolan Trust.

Ken Jones and his daughter Heather. KMG06

Artigarvan man Ken Jones has never missed the London Marathon since it was first held in 1981. He is thus the most senior member of the Ever Present Club, those runners who have completed all 38 marathons in London.

This year Ken completed his 38th with his daughter, Heather who was running her very first marathon.

“I’m still alive!” Ken laughed on Tuesday. “Number 38 and it was quite something.

“It was hot, although not as hot as I expected it to be. I managed it OK but I don’t think I’ll be doing anything now for a month or so.”

He added, “I’d like to do it next year too.”

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