BATH HALF MARATHON: Jenny Carter wants to get quicker for fifth year running
The Bath Half Marathon has been a happy hunting ground for Jenny Carter in recent years – and she is hoping her good fortunes will continue on Sunday.
Over the past four races, Carter – who is mother of two and a teacher at King Edward's Pre-Prep School – has progressively got faster and faster over the two-lap course.
After clocking 89mins 31secs in 2009, her subsequent times have dropped to 87:40, 84:55 and 84:44 – and Carter says: “I would be disappointed not to go faster this time.
“I actually first ran Bath many years ago when I was in my early twenties and did around 88 minutes, so when I returned to the sport ten years later after having two children I thought I would do well to break 90 minutes.
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“But you seem to get better with age in long-distance running.”
The Team Bath athlete certainly proved that last year as she went on to beat her Bath time twice, clocking 83:58 in Bristol and 81:48 in Cardiff to finish the year ranked 16th in the South West.
However, Carter’s plans to increase her training ahead of Sunday’s race have fallen foul of work commitments and running a family.
“I have not been able to increase my mileage as I wanted but I have been training consistently,” she said
“I haven’t raced that much recently either so I have no idea how I will get on.
“The idea is to try and run a personal best, so fingers crossed that it will be okay on the day.”
Last year, Carter was the second Team Bath runner home behind Laura Parsonage (81:49) but the latter is only just recovering from injury so has ruled herself out.
On the men’s side, Nick Shearn was the leading Team Bath athlete in 2012 but his sights are firmly fixed on the London Marathon and Sunday’s race doesn’t fit into his plans.
Veteran Alan Buckingham ran a PB last year but a series of niggling injuries have ruled him out, so it looks like club chairman Dave Coales will be flying the flag at the sharp end.
“I’m not sure I am in shape to beat my personal best of 71 minutes but I am hoping for a sub 74-minute time, which would be my best in Bath,” said Coales.
Matt Young, Nick Bower, Guy Woods and David Vaudin have also entered but Larkhall-based Alec Woods has been forced out with an Achilles injury.