Pressing the Limits in Telford (UK) - The Ironbridge Half Marathon 2017

Telford, UK The course has been described as part beauty, part pain – the Ironbridge Half Marathon, which since its inauguration 26 years ago has been sponsored by Busch Vacuum Pumps and Systems. Each year the runners take up positions and set off on this gruelling event through the picturesque landscape in and around Telford in the United Kingdom. And among the participants, Dr Karl Busch, daughter Ayla, and sons Sami and Kaya, joined by other team members from Busch.
Dr Karl Busch and the Busch Team at the Ironbridge Half Marathon
Dr Karl Busch and the Busch Team at the Ironbridge Half Marathon

The Ironbridge Half Marathon in Telford is a high point on the local sporting calendar, winding through streets and off-road on a circuit that begins and ends in Telford's pretty town park. It is a very demanding course, at times leading through swampy ground and across hilly terrain. 

Along the way, runners pass the historic Blists Hill Victorian Town (an open-air museum that tells the story of the coal and iron-ore mining industry in the area) and follow the abandoned Severn Valley railway line. One popular vantage point for spectators is from the bridge in Blists Hill Victorian Town, the world's first arch bridge constructed of iron, dating from 1781, highlighting the area's engineering history.

Dr Karl Busch, 88 year old co-founder of Busch Vacuum Pumps and Systems, participated in the inaugural Ironbridge Half Marathon back in 1991, and again in last year's event. True to his motto, "Endurance leads to success - or as they say in the Alemannic dialect, 'Nit luck lo' ('Keep pegging away!')", Dr Busch completed the course in just under three and a half hours.

"It is a beautiful course for the first eight miles", comments one of the Busch Team, "but then it starts going uphill and gets really painful!"

Each year, over 700 runners press the limits in Telford. In fact, many participants use the Ironbridge Half Marathon as part of their final training for the London Marathon, which follows shortly afterwards.
 


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