Sunday, August 12, 2012

London Olympics

 We traveled into London Victoria Station bright and early Sunday morning, hoping to catch a glimpse of the Men's Marathon.

Big Ben - 10:25 a.m. - the Men's Marathon starts at 11 a.m.

Walking in the general direction of where we thought the course was, we came upon a throng of spectators milling by the Houses of Parliament.

The lovely couple sitting on the pavement moved over and let us squeeze beside them,
giving us a great position by the barrier. They told us we were in a great spot, as the runners would be passing by here four times over the course of the race.
As it got closer to 11 a.m., the streets continued to fill and there was excitement in the air. It was great to be a part of the fun and everyone was in good spirits. The volunteers ran up and down the street, trying to get the wave going.

Looking up the road to where the runners will be coming from
At roughly six minutes past eleven, the timing clock/truck passed us.
Followed closely by the front runners.
They are FAST. We were less than 2kms into the course, and these guys ran past us at under six minutes.
Two Canadians passed us in a very respectable position - roughly in the first few chunks of runners (not very specific, I know). All the runners were still closely grouped together at this point in the race. 
We were screaming "Canada! Canada!" I hope they heard us.
Around 11:45 a.m., the racers passed us again. By this point the runners had spread out more and we were pleased to see the Canadians still doing well (and I was pleased to have figured out shutter priority on my new camera, getting sharper images for the second pass).
Dylan Wykes
Dylan Wykes of Canada placed 20th out of 100 runners with a time of 2:15:26. That is an insane pace - 3 minutes and 12 seconds per kilometer. My best half marathon time is 1:55, almost twice the pace of these guys.
We decided not to wait for the next two passes, and headed off past the Houses of Parliament, toward South Bank and the Imperial War Museum.

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