Colchester Half Marathon – Sun 26th March’18. With the race getting underway at 9am, Angela Bell & I had an early 6:45am start (especially after the clocks had gone forward!) to take part in our third consecutive Colchester Half Marathon. The race starts outside the Weston Homes Community Stadium, home of Colchester United & after a lap of the pitch to warm up we joined the rest of the participants on the start line. At 9am we joined a starting pen ready for the off. A number of people had already joined ahead of us, so we slotted in to the 2hrs 10min pen. As the race began we made our way through the first couple of miles, downhill, into the centre of town. Once there we were met with a road aptly named North Hill, a steep incline that leads to a left turn on to Colchester High St. On both the hill and Main Street, crowds were lining the streets cheering the runners on. From there the course undulated through the suburbs and business parks of Colchester until we reached the halfway point, a bridge that crosses the A12. Once over the bridge the course was mainly flat, winding though the quaint village of Langham and on to Boxted. The latter, has a long straight road almost two miles in length, with groups of people cheering you on every 200 metres or so. Once at the end of the road, the stadium appears back in sight and after turning left, crossing a second bridge over the main road, you drop down into the finishing straight. The end of of this race must be one of the best supported half marathons around, with the noise level increasing dramatically as people urge you to push for the finishing line. Having started within the 2:10 pen and Angela running just over the two hour mark, the race was made all the more enjoyable by being able to target and catch those in front of us – it is definitely more motivating to overtake than be overtaken! After crossing the line you are rewarded with a t-shirt, goody bag, along with a great medal that features a different yet brilliant design each year. This is one of our favourite halves – and we would recommend it to all.