After the 2002 double appearance of my brother, Dave, and myself, I decided I definitely wasn't running London in 2003 - despite David securing a place. Dave got in through the ballot for a second successive year and decided to run for NCH Action for Children (now Action for Children) In addition, I had, somehow, been cajoled into doing a tandem skydive for NCH. I, therefore, thought it a bit much to do two different charity events in the same year.
As I wasn't running, I agreed to go and cheer Dave round the London course. I'd never watched it before, so it would be an experience to just watch it! It was a very hot day, yet, despite this, I got to the start to see Dave off, only to find I was regretting not taking part! Never had I imagined I'd regret not entering/running a Marathon!!
Several thousand feet up in the sky – the alternative to Marathons!
From left, cousin Deb, Dave’s wife, Lesley, Dave, Mum, cousin Sandra and Aunt Val at start of 2003 London Marathon
Despite having never watched the Marathon before, I was still in charge of the spectating spots! Never one to turn down the chance to take the lead, we headed to Canary Wharf - three miles on from where Dave expected us to be. Thankfully, after the previous years, where he'd not been spotted, he had his mobile with him, so we alerted him to the changed view point. Whilst a bit demotivating for him, we saw him! We also cheered him along the Embankment, towards his finish
Dave knocked five minutes off his 2002 time, finishing in around 3hrs 28 mins. I was very proud of him and pleased I'd gone to cheer. I enjoyed the atmosphere of the crowd but it was then I realised the Marathon bug had started to get me. I had missed the buzz of actually being cheered by the crowd and knew I'd have to run another Marathon before too long!
Dave with his 2nd London Marathon finishers medal