Wednesday, 29 April 2015

Monkey Sweeping Duties

It is 17th April 2015, the time 10:57 am and an email arrives:

Please see reassigned sections below :

Start Richmond to Dorney CP3 : Simon W

Dorney CP3 to Henley CP6 : Mark T
Henley CP6 to Whitchurch CP8 : Jerry Smallwood
Whitchurch CP8 to Clifton Hampden CP11 : Pip H
Clifton Hampden CP11 to Finish Oxford: Garfield J

New sweepers … welcome!  Please read the attached and the below and let myself or James know if you have any concerns

Jerry – can you confirm your phone number for me please :o).

Yes Dear Reader I have volunteered to be one of a team Sweepers helping out at the Thames Path 100 (TP100). This race has become part of me since I completed it which was my very first 100 mile race which seems so long ago in 2012. Since then I have completed the Winter 100 and run numerous ultras and marathons along it length. In 2013 I remember being a Sweeper for the same race and ran a 40 mile length!

I am really looking forward to doing my duties this weekend as I will be taking on a 16 mile (30 km) slot but hope to team up with Pip at Whitchurch to run the extra 4 miles together so that I can get some breakfast at a local hotel and then take the train back to London. Some of you will note I said "breakfast" and that is why I am excited, one of my  favourite forms of running is doing it at night with the added fun that it will be by Old Father Thames.

In true tradition for the TP100 looks bleak with the promise of some rain and social media groups chatting merrily but with a hint of nervousness about the comments. All I can say to this year's runners that they should not underestimate this event, it is mainly flat but is surprising hilly in places, there will be mud, lots of mud and there will be tarmac, lots of that. Foot bridges that whilst at 20 miles you will bound over in the latter stages of the race you will swear at the God of your choice as your aching muscles do the same to you.

I cannot wait for Saturday when I turn up early for my shift to kick the runners out on to the night section. Whitchurch will be the maker and breaker for runners as it is the halfway point and the mind does funny things at this point in a race especially with the night ahead.


  1. In the nicest possible way I hope I don't see you at TP100 if you're a sweeper!! :)

    1. Likewise Mia, have a great race :-)

  2. Mia made a great comment!!!! I had the honor to see the sweeper in my first race (april 2005). Enjoy the event my friend.