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Briton sets new personal best for watching London Marathon coverage

Bloke Watching Marathon

Derick Jones has set a new personal best for watching the BBC coverage of the London Marathon, clocking an impressive 2:32:02.

Jones, an IT engineer who friends describe as an amateur armchair-sportsman at best, was inspired to watch the event after learning that Sir Mo Farah would be competing this year. 

The 42-year old only started training for the six-hour event in February, watching just 20 minutes of the British Indoor Grand Prix before nodding off on the sofa. 

Following a disappointing false start in March, when a BBC4 documentary on otters clashed with coverage of the European Athletics Indoor Championships, many predicted that Jones wasn’t ready for the greatest test of televised sporting endurance. 

“I’m just not that bothered about sport, never have been,” Jones said.

“But there comes a time in a man’s life when you just want to be part of something bigger, to be able to hold your head up on Monday morning and say to your colleagues - yes I watched that.”

With support from his wife Sheila, Derick got off to a strong start turning on the TV in time to see the elite men begin their 26.2 miles.

“I knew my endurance would be a concern, so I played Fortnite for a bit and skipped the pre-race commentary.”

Around mile 14 Jones was struggling and said he thought the wheels had come off but was hanging in there.

“Sir Mo was trailing the pack, and I’d just lost interest really, but I said to myself, self, man up you can do this.

“Sheila handed me a bottle of water and a protein bar, and I just got my head down and tried to enjoy the lovely aerial footage of London.”

With Farah crossing the line in 2:05:39 Jones could taste the finish and gave it his all.

A push from Jones in the last fifteen minutes meant he was there to see fellow Brits Callum Hawkins and Charlotte Purdue both qualify for the World Championships.

Asked if he’ll be watching next year an exhausted Jones told us, “I don’t think so, a marathon is a once in a lifetime for me, I’ll probably just take the dog for a long walk and watch the highlights next year.” 


Abbott could apply for top Bank of England job

Diane Abbott
Photo credit: photographer695 | Flickr

Shadow Home Secretary Diane Abbott could replace Mark Carney as the governor of the Bank of England.

Mr Carney has announced he will step down in January 2020 after more than six years in the post.

Ms Abbott, who could be considering applying for the position, has a long history of public service and has been the Member of Parliament for Hackney North and Stoke Newington since 1987.

Recruitment firm Sapphire Partners will assist the government in filling the prestigious £480,000 per annum role which has been advertised on the public appointments website.

Interviews are expected to take place in the coming months before the government makes an appointment in the autumn.

In a statement, the chancellor Philip Hammond said “Finding a candidate with the right skills and experience to lead the Bank of England is vital for ensuring the continuing strength of our economy and for maintaining the UK’s position as a leading global financial centre.” 

With the financial sector still trying to regain the trust of the public after recent high profile scandals, the Bank may be keen to distance itself from its ‘old boys club’ image.

While no one knows if Ms Abbott is considering applying for the position, her appointment would certainly give the City of London the shake up some say it needs.