London Marathon 2019
Words: Joe Harper
Images: Joe Harper
It was the first time since beginning to photograph sport that Iâ€™d been in London for the Marathon. Travel elsewhere and other commitments had kept me away. But this year was different. This year I was here and wanted/needed to experience the whole thing away from a livestream found through countless google searches with a dodgy wifi connection.
I started at Narrow Street which sits parallel to River Thames through the Limehouse area. I worked my way over to Commercial road, the infamous Mile 21. Run Dem Crew’s – Cheer Dem where in full force (as you can see). The energy in that corner made up for every other part of the course Iâ€™d seen, there was no more casual cheering or obligatory clapping. The crowd and crews were hardwired to cheer. Showering the runners, racers and participators in confetti, high-fives and screams of encouragement with or without aid of a megaphone.Â
I was used to watching the cycling Grand Tours, cheering on your favourite pro athlete at arms-length was one thing but here, here the stage was shared by the pro-level and the everyday athlete. Combined with the community behind running in the Capital there was an atmosphere and connection to the race that couldnâ€™t be achieved anywhere outside of this sport.