Powys runner Andrew Davies ran a remarkable race to finish in tenth place at this year’s London Marathon.

The 41-year-old elite athlete ran the iconic route through the streets of the capital in a time of 2 hours, 15 minutes and 36 seconds.

After crossing the line in front of Buckingham Palace on The Mall, the Newtown college lecturer celebrated with a bottle of cider, telling fans that it was “so tough out there but delighted with my performance”.

Reflecting on the race on Sunday, October 3, Davies, who was raised on a farm in Forden, near Welshpool, said: “I was just happy to finish in the end. It was great to see London Marathon back on and the crowds are spectacular at times.”

He added: “The wheels fell off with about half a mile to go but I managed to get to the finish line.”

Davies has garnered many a nickname over the years, including the “Forden Locomotive” and. more recently, “The Android” – a tongue in cheek reference to Mo Farah’s “Mo-bot”. 

However, Davies – whose previous best finish was 17th in 2017 – admitted he did not have the energy to celebrate with any trademark celebration at the finishing line. 

He said: “I could barely walk over the line never mind move my arms.”
The Llanllwchaiarn resident holds the current marathon record – which is not specific to London – of 2:14:36 for any British runner over 40 years old.

Despite an incredible race, Davies was six seconds short of qualifying for next year’s Commonwealth Games in Birmingham. 

He said: “I haven’t got the time for the Commies so might have to do another one before the cut off date next April. I will have to consider my options.”

Welsh Athletics chief executive James Williams congratulated Davies and eighth place Josh Griffiths on their “great running”. He said: “Fantastic to see two Welsh Athletics athletes in the top 10 of the London Marathon.”

Welshpool actress Lu Corfield, who has starred in Netflix hit Sex Education and BBC’s Last Tango in Halifax, said she was “so proud” of her “homeland hero”.

“You’ve been my hero since you sat by me on our first day at High School (and stayed by my side throughout). You kept that crown when I left home and you still visited Mum. But now this? I’m SO proud of you. Mum would be too.”

There were plenty of smiles and even some sunshine as the London Marathon got under way for the first full-scale staging of the race in more than two years. 

Around 40,000 runners joined some of the world’s best on the traditional route from Greenwich to The Mall after last year’s race was hit by the Covid pandemic.

The men’s race, the first full-scale running of the event in more than two years, was won by Sisay Lemma of Ethiopa in 2:04.01.

Last year’s race was moved from its usual April date to October due to the pandemic with a small, elite field competing over 19 laps of a closed course around St James’s Park.