Sunday, 28 September 2008

4th place in the Geneva Marathon

A frustrating morning for me in the Geneva Marathon as I came home an isolated 4th place in 2:20.54, not what I had anticpiated.

A leading group of 4 took off after a kilometre and even on a good day I wouldn't have gone with them. So I was left with a couple of other guys for company who weren't able to contribute to the pace so I ended doing most of the next 41km on the front of my group until they had all dropped off by 23k and then it was solo to the finish.

The real frustration was that there was just no speed in my legs. As soon as I tried running faster than 3.20/km I was struggling to get my legs moving, but 3:20 was comfortable. I've got a hunch as to what I got wrong in my preparation but will leave that for the debrief in a couple of weeks time. At least I was strong at the end with fuel in the tank (6.54 from 40k to the finish).

Sitting in my hotel writi
ng this I feel so much less knackered than after my previous marathons which I suppose is something to take heart from - I can walk normally for a start ! There were a number of other pluses which will come out in the wash but my Saucony Fastwitch 3 racing shoes performed really well and my feet are in the best shape ever after a marathon.

Up at the front Ethiopia's Tesfaye Eticha broke the course record to take his fourth win a row with last year's runner up Philipp Muia of Kenya having to settle for second place again.

Time for a good rest now before digging out the spikes for some cross country.


This morning I'm reminding myself why I chose Geneva rather than Berlin or Chicago for my autumn marathon. I really wanted to be in a race situation: near the front, hopefully having to use tactics, fast finish etc rather than just sitting in a group on another drag strip and trying to squeeze out a top 20 finish. What yesterday taught me was that a marathon 'race' is a completely different game from the big city races that I have done before (Amsterdam, London, Toronto) and certainly comparing my performance yesterday with my previous runs in those events based on the finish time is nigh on impossible. Looking at it from the perspective of position, which is why I was here, I finished 4th in a race in which I had the 5th best PB. I would have needed a big improvement to get 3rd (though I felt that 2.17 was on the cards). And on current fitness 1st and 2nd places were beyond my capability.

So actually 4th place was decent result which I should be satisfied with and the experience of the preparation and race situation will be beneficial in future.

1. Tesfaye Eticha Eth 2:14.23,1
2. Philipp Muia Ken 2:15.36,8
3. Zeremariam Berhe Eri 2:17.33,8
4. Adrian Marriott GB 2:20.49,5

Full Results


mopobwoy said...

Sorry to hear that you didn't achieve your goal but congrats on a your position. Good luck with the x-country, man I wish I can run some x-races.-

Miika Takala said...

Well maybe not so bad race after all! I put some review about my race in English on my blog.

Anonymous said...


Tough run brother. 2:20:54 is not a jog in the park, know your not happy based on what I read but keep working, you have run 2:18 and we both know you can go even faster.

All the best,
Nate Pennington

Adrian Marriott said...

Thanks for the encouraging words Nate. The frustration is that 2:20 did feel like a jog in the park ! At least I recovered super quickly and can't wait to get my trainers back on next week.

Did you see the results from STWM ? Pretty strong winds there again this year which is a shame.