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Cambridge Half Marathon 'winner' cannot claim his victory

By Ben Comber

Saucony half marathon, Cambridge . Picture: Keith Heppell
Saucony half marathon, Cambridge . Picture: Keith Heppell

Although he won the Saucony Cambridge Half Marathon on Sunday, Jack Gray still hasn't 'technically' finished a half marathon.

The 24-year-old cross country runner had the race of his life after taking the spot of his injured boss, Andrew Rawlings, who signed up for the Cambridge half in the 45-49 year category at the last minute.

Jack, who runs for Cambridge and Coleridge Athletic Club and has also ran cross country for England, crossed the line first in one hour, six minutes and 52 seconds.

To put that in perspective, Mo Farah won the Vitality big half-marathon in London, on the same day, in one hour, one minute and 40 seconds. The course record is 1 hour, six minutes and 15 seconds.

Jack told the Cambridge Independent: “I’m still yet to complete a half marathon, by the rules.

“I run at quite a good level cross country and across 5k-10k distances, but I don’t do long distance. I’m much more at home over 5k.”

After a whip around at work to see if anyone wanted to take Andrew’s place, Jack donated to Cancer Research UK and laced up his trainers.

The plan was originally to run as a pacer for another colleague.

“After about five or six miles I didn’t have the loyalty to help him out anymore,” Jack laughed. “After I got to about 10 miles I thought I was feeling really good, and I could probably win it.

“Sometimes speed running is enough to carry you the distance if you’re prepared to grit your teeth.”

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