Lanzarote International Marathon – 12 December 2015
The Canaries are named after dogs (from the Latin) not dicky birds, and they are windy.
That was pretty much the entirety of my knowledge of them before I went. Our group of five had originally looked at Malaga the week before, but that clashed with our own Hexham racecourse event, so there was no doubt as to which took precedence.
After a four and a quarter hour flight and a short taxi ride, we decamped to our hotel. This was a very pleasant place but a week all-inclusive is no good for someone with no will power.
That’ll be me then!
After a ten minute bus trip into Costa Teguise we made our way to the race HQ to pick up our numbers. There was a race limit of 300 for the full, and along with a half, 10k and 5k, about 1300 taking part in all.
The set up at the marathon start/finish, which was also the finish for all the other distances seemed quite extensive for a fairly small event.
Registration was painless and along with our number containing a chip, we received a goody bag which pretty much lived up to its name.
There was a very nice pale blue T shirt, a pair of socks, a soft rollable drinks holder, a huge bottle of sports drink and a few other bits and pieces, including a wrist band. #
Why do events do wrist bands?
That was that done and it was enjoying the place until the 8 a.m. start on Saturday.
As the only marathon runners in our group, George and I went for the 7:20 a.m. bus, which didn’t arrive, so we got a taxi along with a Spanish chap.
The start area was very relaxed with plenty of Portaloos and no queue to hand in bags. There was a
chance to catch up with a number of familiar faces, mostly from the 100 marathon club, then it was into the start area and away we went.
The course was very straightforward being 21k out along the coast, mostly on beachside paved paths, turn around and come back. There were also pacers for a variety of times.
Drinks stations were frequent and had water and isotonic drink in cups along with bananas and oranges.
Several drink stations also had water in bottles with sports caps, which was very useful as the day was very warm and there was no real breeze to speak of, despite the islands being known for wind.
The first k was through Costa Teguise, leading down to the coastal path when we started our long run along the seafront.
At about 3k I spotted a Durham Tri vest and started up a chat which lasted until about 29k. Its owner was Bruce Smith, brother of Stuart who does a lot of our races.
We left the coast path to go around the desalination plant which supplies a lot of the fresh water to this island which has very little rain. It’s not an attractive building, looking more like an oil refinery but it is vital.
We were then on the road until the capital, Arrecife, where we re-joined the coast path ad passed the local equivalent of Dunstanburgh castle.