This race is one of my favourites – you could say it was made for me. I run, I love music, I love Liverpool and your race number includes a beer ticket – what more could you want? I was taking part for the fourth year running.

The Rock ‘n’ Roll series is a whole weekend of music and running, with a 5k on Saturday, a half and full marathon on Sunday and a mile fun run Sunday afternoon. It has local bands offering on course entertainment and a finish line festival.

The 5k race fell on the same day as the royal wedding which was acknowledged by the diamond ring shaped bling.

Here comes the sun
I’d been keeping a close eye on the weather forecast all week. Due to injury and the 23-degree heat, I dropped down to the half marathon the day before. It was a day to be sensible.

Come together
I attended the expo the day before the race to swap my race entries over. If I’m honest, I remembered it to be much bigger – there weren’t as many shopping opportunities as I would have hoped for but there were plenty of races to be tempted by. The main event on Sunday is well organised with both the races setting off in waves.

Magical mystery tour
The route takes in a lot of the sights of Liverpool including the Cavern Club, China town, Penny Lane, Sefton Park and the Liver building. If you’re a football fan you’d love the marathon route as it takes you past the Liverpool and Everton grounds. This year it actually went through Anfield. The last 4-mile stretch is along the Albert Docks which really tests your mental strength and those cobbles are a killer for your feet.

Run for your life
I wasn’t running for a time, I was there to have a good time and enjoy the atmosphere. I’ve already ticked off the sub 2 half so I’m happy. I set off 2 corals behind the 2-hour pacer. I’d caught him by mile 3 but I let him leave me on that first hill. Being unprepared I’d forgotten gels, so I was grateful they were provided on course. SIS is not my preferred choice as I don’t like the consistency, but I’m pleased they were available.

 

I feel fine
I crossed the line in 2.03.56 – the dodgy hip held out! I’m really pleased with that to say I’ve had 6 weeks of reduced training.

Rock and Roll Music
The music festival gets into full swing after the half marathon, which is why I prefer the half to the full as you get. Cast played a few years back and in my opinion, they will take some beating. This years headline act was Space. Lead singer, Tommy Scott rolled on stage knocking back a bottle of red, I lasted two songs before heading back to the marathon to cheer on the runners and run the last little bit with a friend.

The Bling
Isn’t it fab? This year it spins.
A quick explanation of the medal structure.
The encore medal – you get that if you also ran the race the previous year. If you run the 5k on Saturday and the half / full Sunday then you also get a  Remix medal, add in the mile and there is the chance to come away with 5 medals!  🙂

Liverpool, once again you rocked – let’s throw in another Beatles song; I’ll be back next year


Race Breakdown:
Entry Cost: £35.00 (early bird entry)
Water stations: 11 for the full 5 for the half. SIS gels. Beer at the finish.
Parking: Plenty and good transport links
Photos: Yes
Baggage Facilities: Yes – well organised too
Post-Race Goodies: T-shirt / medal / water / crisps / haribo / banana / finish line pint
Highlights: The music. The medals. The people.
Low points: I couldn’t fault it, the only thing is the t-shirts aren’t very flattering.