Exmouth Harrier Ryan Snell 104th at the London Marathon

PUBLISHED: 12:55 26 April 2018 | UPDATED: 12:55 26 April 2018

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With more than 10 applications to run in the London Marathon for every one who finished, just getting a place to run in the 2018 event was hard enough, writes Cathy Newman.

Then there was a long, hard winter of training with particularly unfavourable weather and finally the hottest weather on record for the event, leading to it being described as ‘brutal’ by many participants.

When the Queen started the race at 10am, seven Exmouth Harriers started their quest for glory, but it soon became clear that finishing in the difficult conditions was going to be a huge challenge and that personal time goals would need to be drastically modified.

Remarkably, all the Exmouth Harriers ran well-paced races, slowing only in the later stages clearly because of the increasing heat.

Ryan Snell, the club’s most prolific marathon runner in recent years, was as expected the first of the club to finish.

Whilst it was one of his slower marathons it was in fact his highest position in the London Marathon, clearly indicating the tough conditions.

He was 104th in 2:37:46 and said that he was ‘happy’ with the result. Mike Musgrove had less than ideal preparation and in consequence was very glad to go under three hours with 2:56:37. Anthony Hatchard finished in 3:13:18 and Mac McNagten in 3:45:40.

In the ladies’ race the club’s highest finisher, Susan Hill, finished an excellent 24th in her F55 age category with 3:50:53, just ahead of Paula Hawkins, making her London debut with 3:56:49, and Louise Hempstead with 4:05.

With a record number of people failing to finish and stunning victories for Kenya in both the men’s and women’s competition, it will be a race to remember.

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