It was second time lucky for Joanne Nelson who won the women’s race at the 34th Brooks Snowdonia Marathon Eryri (Saturday 29 October) and set a new course record.
Nelson of Darwen Dashers took the runner-up spot in 2015 but was determined to improve upon that by winning the ladies title. She did this in style, finishing strongly in 3:03:53 and breaking the women’s course record as well. Andrea Rowlands of Eryri Harriers was second in 3:04:58 with Merrell athlete Tracy McCartney coming third in 3:09:27.
In the men’s race, Russell Bentley of Kent AC took the lead at the 5-mile climb up Pen y Pass and held on to win in 2:35:05. Daniel Jones of Team Bath AC followed him in 2:36:46 with Rob Bridges of Manchester Triathlon Club coming third in 2:46:08.
Over 2,000 runners headed off from Llanberis in dull but dry conditions for this tough, scenic marathon which has become one of the most highly sought-after races and was voted best British marathon twice. Entries for this year's race sold out within 12 hours.
One couple decided to go that bit further with a Snowdonia Marathon double challenge. Jonny Bibb and Emma Phillips of Stoke FIT started their first ‘unofficial’ marathon at 3am, had a change of kit and refuelled before marathon number two at 10.30am. The first marathon went well but unfortunately, Emma sustained an injury at 17 miles in her second marathon forcing her to retire. They achieved a total of 44.5 miles.
The final word from race organiser Jayne Lloyd about this successful event: “I am astounded by how much effort people put in to make it happen and I think we have the most awesome bunch of runners taking part. Diolch o galon.”