London Marathon Success

London Marathon Success

DMVAC Runner George James - Success at London Marathon

Long-time member of Dorking and Mole Valley Athletics Club (DMVAC) George James ran the London marathon on Sunday 21 April 2024 in the superb time of 2 hours 14 minutes 59 seconds, placing him fourth UK runner in the field and 13th overall, including the elite runners.

His time is the 7th fastest this year by a UK athlete.

James ran a consistent first half, passing through the half marathon point quicker than his previous half-marathon personal best, in a time of 66 minutes 7 seconds. Although he slowed slightly, he still ran a consistent pace throughout the second half - probably the most impressive aspect of his performance.

James has been running for the club since he was 11 years old and represented Surrey in under-17 cross-country events.

He has been travelling around the world for work for many years, but is now back in the UK and training hard in the Surrey hills. He showed his ability in long-distance running recently by finishing second in the Seychelles half marathon in 2020. In December 2023 he ran a very impressive 66 minutes 28 seconds to win the Pisa half marathon in Italy.

Putting his performance into perspective, unlike everyone ahead of him and a good few behind, James did not have the "elite" treatment before and during the race. He did not get put up in a hotel the night before and get bussed to the start-line, to be given his own marquee and warm-up space. He did not have pacemakers to guide him or shield him from the wind. He got up at 5.30am, took the train from Ashtead to the mass start in Blackheath, and ran virtually the whole way on his own.

James’s performance has already caused a bit of a stir amongst the British marathon community. International marathoner and DMVAC clubmate Luke Caldwell, who was watching George from the roadside on Sunday, said he had been asked by several of his friends in the elite running fraternity "who is this guy?"

This performance should open a few doors for James. He will automatically be eligible to compete in the elite field in various city marathons in future. He has already expressed a desire to return to London next year. When asked about his run he simply said "I loved every minute of it"