Took part in my first parkrun at Hackney Marshes on Saturday.? A flat 5k run on a course which overlooks the new Olympic building site!
Very informal – arrived 20 minutes to 9am and no-one about.? 15 minutes to go and two people turn up on bikes.? 10 minutes to go – a marshal turns up.? 5 minutes to go – and everybody comes out of the woodwork!!
Organiser gives a rough description of the route – the start is here by the tree, follow the arrows, marshal?will direct you over the bridge,?the finish is there where the flat cones are laid out!? Start the countdown, 3, 2 – oh someone else has turned up to start – wait for them – 1, Go!!
Cross the finish line – one marshal with a timing box pushing a button every time someone crosses the line – another giving out barcoded positions and another person scanning the barcodes in the order that people cross the line.? Hopefully the two will tally up correctly later (the organiser said that this very rarely happens as people turn up without their bar codes and so cause problems.)
The results? say that there were 27 entrants – the handwritten list at the end that I saw?said that there was nearer 35 – 8 people without bar codes.? My time was wrong due to the “no bar code” runners not being included within the final list so everyone with a code moves up into their timed places.
There were four marshals that I saw and three of these were doing the timings.? As I said a very informal run – all abilities taking part.? It was good fun.? A great way to get new runners into the sport as it is very laid back.? No club vests were worn (apart from me in my MBH top!)? No water at the end – bring your own and leave it on the picnic bench.
45 minutes after it started everyone had left and it was like it was when I arrived – no-one in sight!