11 October 2012: 2012 has been a remarkable year for British sport. Wiggo’s Tour de France triumph; the Olympic and Paralympic Games; and Andy Murray’s Grand Slam. All of them were truly splendid but, let’s be honest, mere rehearsals for the main event – the 2012 Windsor Half Marathon.
Set in the beautiful countryside of Windsor Great Park, the 13 mile course ends with a magnificent final stretch overlooked by the imposing outline of Windsor Castle.
Like Team GB before it, this year the SHINE on Windsor squad exceeded expectations. With an impressive 25 runners, it was the largest team we have ever fielded for the Windsor Half Marathon and saw some special times posted and some serious money raised.
On (and off) the podium
We’re delighted to report that all our runners did themselves proud. Posting particularly impressive times were Stuart Hodgson (1hr 33m), Jeroen Rombouts (1hr 34m), Stefan Martin (1 hr 38m) and David Easton (1hr 43m).
A special mention is also due to Capital MSL. As well as providing SHINE with pro-bono communications advice, Capital also regularly offers up willing volunteers to our Windsor team. This year they provided us with four runners, more than ever before, and we are extremely grateful for their continued generosity and commitment to our work.
The SHINE guys did pretty well, too: our Chairman, Jim O’Neill, clocked a creditable time of 1hr 41m. Hot on his heels was another Trustee, Cameron Ogden (1hr 46m). And Malachy O’Keeffe, our long-suffering intern, once again went many extra miles for SHINE, not only running himself but also persuading several friends to join him.
Off the track, the SHINE hospitality tent was up and running once again. This provided our runners and some 40-50 family and friends with encouragement, refreshments and even sports massages (for those who felt a little achy).
And the money?
Of course, running is good and worthy and all but the main reason that we field a team is to raise money for our work. All our runners attracted impressive amounts in sponsorship; however, particular recognition is due to Anna Stupnytska, who has raised more than £2,500 so far (we’re still counting!).
All in all, this year’s team have raised £30,000 towards a new SHINE on Saturday project in London. This will give hundreds of primary children from low-income families an extra five weeks of creative teaching every year, helping to transform underachievers into enthusiastic, confident and successful learners.
A final thank you to all our runners and everybody who sponsored them. Their commitment, determination and generosity will give hundreds more children the chance to improve their own personal bests at school and, when they leave, be better prepared to hit the ground running.