A new decade.

Stablemate Jimmy Lee mashed 15’40” off his best at the Yorkshire Marathon, going sub-3 for the first time in a sensational 2:59:20.

The part-time triathlete toed the line with frozen fingers and toes but warmed up a few miles in. What’s he moaning about? Seems much better than getting out of a freezing lake and being blasted by cross-winds on a bike! And aren’t Yorkshire folk not meant to feel the cold? Ee bah gum!

The Stable News dragged Ally “the Chin” Smith away from his Last of the Summer Wine box set and popped him down to God’s own country, complete with flat cap, wellies, and crook:

Ally: Eh up, Jimmy lad, tell us all about t’race, then? What place did you finish?

Jimmy: No idea what position I finished, but I don’t care—I got SUB-3, and that’s what I was going for.

Ally: Ohhhh yes, that’ll do. 

For those who observe.

Jimmy: It was a big PB. I’ve been training with Stazza for the last couple of years (got injured in ’22, so had to postpone), so I’m delighted to go under 3 with a time of 2.59:20. My previous PB was 3:15 back in 2016, so I’ve improved massively.

Ally: Chuffin’ Nora, mate. That’s brilliant. How’d it all play out? 

Jimmy: The race went well. It’s not the most inspiring course, with a lot of boring bits in the middle sections, but it’s local to me, and it helped that I could sleep in my own bed the night before.

Ally: Can’t beat that, mate. 

Jimmy:  I went out a bit too fast and felt great up till mile 18, when it started to be a struggle. I ended up hanging on for the final 8, as I was getting slower and slower. I then got told off by Stazza for not sticking to the plan. 😊

Ally: Ha-ha, I can hear him now: the marathon can’t be forced; you need to start slower than you think … All the training comes to fruition after the taper, making you feel fitter than you’ve ever felt before. You really were a silly bugger for not following his instructions, but ye got ‘t in t’ end, mate. What’s next, daft lad? 

Jimmy: I’ve got a half in January, but my plan is to have a drink and get fat in the next couple of months.

Ally: That sounds like a reyt good plan and well deserved. Ta-ra, Jimmy; I’ll see thee in the new year. 

Jimmy: Ta-ra, Ally. 

Coach Stazza was brewing a double bagger of Yorkshire Tea (sent to him by Jimmy as a thank you): 

“Jimmy, Jimmy, Jimmy … I told you not to get cocky … The marathon is a fickle beast… A few seconds per mile quicker here or there can cost you … But your toughness (or is it stubbornness?) came out in force, and you held on for an epic clocking … Result!”