Marshall expects pressure-free run
Lamont Marshall insists there is no pressure on him to retain his Bermuda Day Half Marathon title.
The 34-year-old is gunning for his second straight victory and third overall and is among the firm favourites heading into the 13.1-mile road race on Friday.
“I don’t feel pressure any more because I have won it twice, so I just feel relaxed,” Marshall said.
“Having two victories under your belt actually relieves the pressure; it’s not like I’m trying to get my first victory.
“If you have won it, then you are already in the history books, so to speak.”
Marshall, who won his first title in 2016, is going into the race high on confidence having established national records in the 5K and 15K this year.
“If you’re breaking national records going into the race, then that’s a really good thing,” he said. “I have done all my homework in terms of the training and I am trying to challenge myself and push for it.
“Hopefully, I can get a decent time. I usually like to warm up the first couple of miles and then sort of worry about time. I don’t want to lose the race worrying about time and going out too fast.”
As for his thoughts on the rest of the field, Marshall said: “The last thing you want to do is run somebody else’s race.
“I am prepared, whoever is on the line. I can run a fast race or tactical race and the main thing is to get yourself in shape. I’m definitely 100 per cent ready.
This year’s race will start in St George’s and finish at Bernard Park. “Coming out of the east is easier in that you get to warm up better,” Marshall said. “The first three miles of the Causeway is flat and you can warm up.
“[From Somerset] I think I counted five inclines at White Hill and White Hill is only two or three miles [from the start]. Out of Somerset, it’s right at you going up across Somerset Cricket Club and the laundromat.
“It breaks you out of your rhythm almost immediately, so if you are dealing with hills and heat your first three miles it can deter you.”
The racecourse passes through Marshall’s neighbourhood on Middle Road in Devonshire.
“It’s always special coming across that Belvin’s area because you get to have your home-crowd advantage every other year,” he added. “A lot of my neighbours have been saying they are going to be out there cheering for me.
“It’s always good to get the home crowd behind you as Jay Donawa and Kavin Smith can relate to that when it comes out of Somerset.
“It’s a good thing to come from both ends of the island and it was a really good change that they [organisers] decided to make.”
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