Jamie Paterson’s report:
We arrived on time in Bordeaux, courtesy of BA, on Friday afternoon and in no time had our hire car and after a short drive arrived at Chateau La Mission where we were guests for the weekend.
We quickly unpacked then headed into Bordeaux for a pre Marathon dinner. Unfortunately we did not find any pasta and so ended up with a large piece of Cote de Boeuf and a few glasses of red wine – not exactly ideal Marathon preparation but delicious none the less.
It was an early start on Saturday morning so that we could get to Chateau Pichon Longueville, for whose team we were running for, for 7.00am before the roads were closed. At this stage there was no hint that a Marathon was going to be run in the area. While we had some breakfast and the sun rose there was a little more activity and signs were busily being erected with names of Chateau on them and the odd distance marker.
We then had to get to the start in preparation for a 9.30 race start. Unfortunately we were not in fancy dress and as a result felt somewhat under dressed. However once the run started it really didn’t matter what we were wearing.
Drinking wine while running a Marathon could be described as crazy and one runner I met afterwards said that it was ‘utter madness’. However I was up for the challenge and didn’t want to miss out on any of the fun.
The run is a figure of eight starting and finishing in the town of Pauillac. We headed south-west first and into the vines. The first Chateau we passed was Chateau Batailly and then we moved out of Pauillac and into the St.Julien region, which so happens to be my favourite area for wine. We ran through Chateau La Grange and to Chateau Gruard Larose. I was now running through Chateau and vines that I had come to know so well through labels on wine bottles. It was fantastic and a wonderful distraction from the run as we went on to pass Beychevelle, Ducru Beaucaillou, Leoville and Langoa Barton, Leoville Poyferre and Leoville-les-Cases and then upto Pichon-Lalande and Pichon-Longueville. Mary-Jane (his wife) was waiting at Pichon and at this stage we were only 18kms into the run – just less than half way.
The race was getting harder now as we went through Lynch-Bages and headed north back into Pauillac. We headed north-west through Mouton Rothschild and Laffite and up towards St.Estephe. More wonderful Chateau and a few hills made this gruelling, particularly the hill up to Chateau Le Crock and into the town of St.Estephe. The final section was south from Chateau Phelan-Segur and passed Chateau Montrose heading along the river and back down to Pauillac.
I was delighted to reach the end in 4.06, especially as it was now 32 degrees, and after sampling many delights along the way. It was an unbelievable run and I shall always remember it.
The following day we revisited Pauillac and had a Moules and frites lunch overlooking the Gironde before visiting some of the Chateau , this time by car. We then headed back to Bordeaux and had a final dinner in Place de la Comedie .
Monday morning arrived and back home we headed. The memories will be with me forever.
It was quite some experience in 32 degree heat and plenty of wine on tap. Jamie managed to complete the run in 4.06 hours and this included stopping off to have a few glasses of wine on the way. Thankfully Tony Wilson sponsored him per glass of wine and he is delighted to say that he managed to hit the ‘cap’ that was set of 10. For the record he ran through all his favourite Chateaux in St.Julien, and then through Pauillac and St.Estephe. He stopped for wine at:
Chateau Gruard Larose, Chateau Ducru-Beaucaillou, Chateau Beychevelle, Chateau Pichon Longeville, Chareau Grand-Puy Lacoste, Chateau Pontet-Canet, Chateau Laffite Rothschild, Chateau Mouton Rothschild, Chateau Le Crock, Chateau Phelan-Segur, Chateau Montrose.
It was an incredible experience and if you have any intention to run a Marathon, he said you should seriously consider this one.
Many congratulations to Jamie. For those who don’t know, he is Myles’ first cousin and was in Wengen at Christmas when Myles went missing.
For more information go to www.marathondumedoc.com