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Steve Kenyon, of Gloucester Athletic Club, is still on course for this year’s London Marathon

Gloucester > Sport > Running

Author: Roger Jackson, Posted: Wednesday, 25th March 2020, 09:00

Steve Kenyon Steve Kenyon

Steve Kenyon is excited to be taking part in this year’s delayed London Marathon.

The 34-year-old has been clocking up some pretty impressive times since joining Gloucester Athletic Club a couple of years ago, including a personal best of two hours, 42 in the Newport Marathon last May.

That gave him his qualifying time for the big race in London, which will now take place on Sunday 4th October, and he’d love to shave a minute or two off that when he runs round the streets of England’s capital.

“The target is a PB,” he said, “that’s the benchmark. Anywhere between 2.45 to 2.40, I’d be elated.”

That would be some going for someone who has never run the London before, has only ever run three marathons – he’s run the Gloucester Marathon twice - and was something of a latecomer into the sport.

But such has been his rapid improvement that few, if any, doubt his ability to achieve his aim.

Kenyon is actually following in something of a family tradition because both his mum Caroline and stepdad Cliff, and then his sister Sarah more recently, have all run the London Marathon.

“Now they’ve done it, I feel like I should do it and now it’s my turn,” he said. “But they went out to enjoy it, I’ve got a lot more pressure because I’m going for the time.”

The Gloucester-born former Chosen Hill School pupil started running only when he was in his late 20s.

“I’ve been running for about for five or six years, but I didn’t take to it to start with,” he said. “It was a bit of a slow burner.”

That all changed when he met Jason Tilley, who like Kenyon runs for Gloucester AC and is also taking part in this year’s London Marathon.

“I met him about four years ago,” continued Kenyon. “I used to run round the streets of Gloucester on my own and he’d be doing the same.

“We started running together and now we’re very good friends.”

They’re competitive too.

“Oh yeah,” said Kenyon with a laugh. “He’s a few years older than me so he’s always got that excuse! I’m a little bit quicker than him but he always says he beats me on age category!”

Kenyon, who lives in Elmbridge, has certainly come a long way in a short time. He didn’t play any sport before catching the running bug and initially took up the sport because “I knew I had to get fitter”.

“I did quite a few local races,” he added. “I did the Bourton 10K six years ago and I was slow, I finished in 45 minutes. This year I did it in 33. I wasn’t competitive back then, I just ran for a bit of fitness.

“But I started to enjoy it more and more and I got quicker.”

And his running has certainly been on an upward curve since he joined Gloucester AC where he is part of “a good friendship group”.

“The club have been very good,” he said. “They’re a good group of guys. They support you if you’re on the track, doing cross-country or long distance. There’s something for everyone at the club and it’s nice to be part of a local team.”

And Kenyon wants to be part of a team for many years.

“I need to see how I feel after the race, but I definitely want to do the London Marathon again,” he said.

“There are quite a few races I’d like to do. I did an ultra last year, I’d like to do another one of those.”

He did pretty well on his ultra-debut, completing the Race to the Tower up to Broadway in “eight hours something”.

“I was happy with that,” he continued, “I finished third overall. There are a lot of different challenges, both mentally and physically, to go at.

“I’d like to do the New York Marathon and I’d like to run some half-marathons in Europe.”

Kenyon has a half-marathon PB of 73 minutes set in Stroud in October last year – like the vast majority of runners he can reel off his times without a moment’s hesitation.

And he didn’t hesitate for a moment when asked if he was still going to run in this year’s delayed London Marathon.

“Definitely,” he said.

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