What could be more exciting then starting and finishing a race at one of London’s most popular tourist destinations. Last week I did just that and ran the official half marathon of Hampton court. Running in it’s 3rd year, a beautiful flat route starting at the iconic Tudor Palace of Henry VIII and finishing in the gardens of the palace.
It was a quick and simple journey from London Vauxhall to Hampton court with a short walk from the station to the race village. The bag drop was relevantly easy to find, lots of staff at hand and very efficient which meant no queues. Toilets were accessible, plenty around the palace grounds as well are near the race village.
We were allocated start waves prior to the race, which was great as the faster runners could head off first. I was wave 4 with a start time of 09:09. Walking towards the start line along with thousands of runners with the view of the palace in the background was absolutely amazing.
It was great running weather the morning of the race despite it being a little windy. I started off slow to get the legs moving and eased into a steady pace, running comfortably and managed to maintain an 8:24 pace per mile throughout the race. Finishing with 1hr 52mins.
The way the route is set out loops you around twice along the river, for some races this would not work as well. But it was perfectly fine as when you reached the 2nd loop you knew you where almost approaching the finish.
As part of the route there was a long stretch alongside and crossing busy roads. I even had to stop to let a car out, which meant me suddenly stopping. Lucky it wasn’t too long before I got back into my routine.
Loved the choir at the bridge and the crowds were amazing. Marshalls were exceptional throughout the course and really cheered us on. It was a nice route especially running along the riverside, but not quite as nice when having to cross the busy roads.
Goodies bags and medal
Overall it was a brilliant experience, Henry VIII at the start and finish with some Hi-Fives along the way too. Well organised race, fully marshalled. Friendly staff, plenty of toilets, easy and quick bag drop. Water stations were on point located at mile 3, 7 and 11. Incredible medal and a lovely t-shirt. I really enjoyed the race and transport connections was amazing. Would highly recommend this race and will definitely be back next year.
If you like to take part in the Half Marathon at Hampton Court you can find out more on this link: Palace Half Marathon