Your Name: David Barker
Occupation: Product manager for a merketing services company
Home Town: Tunbridge Wells
Twitter Account: @DavidinRTW
What is your running background? I joined the school athletics club when i was 10, and have been a runner ever since. However after the Great North Run in 1997 i stopped entering races, and just ran for fun. Entered my first official marathon in 2007, and started racing again on a regular basis.
When did you first start running Ultra marathons and why? My first ultra was Centurion’s North Downs Way 100 in August 2012. For the previous three years I had been trying for a sub-3hr marathon, and wanted a complete change from fast road racing. I entered a 100 miler as the distance was so much further than I had ever run, I didn’t even know if I could complete it, and wouldn’t care about the time.
When or where (at which events) are we most likely to see you? Any trail marathons on North or South Downs.
What are your personal key running achievements to date? A sub 3hr Dublin Marathon in 2014, a sub 16hr 100 miles at the Autumn 100 in 2015.
What was your hardest race experience? TDS in 2015.
What events do you have planned for 2016 up to Spartathlon? London Marathon, Bewl Water ultra, South Downs Way 100
What is your typical race strategy for an ultra? Start at an easy pace, and then keep that pace all day. No slowing down
What does a typical training week look like? Six runs per week: 1 speed session, 1 hill reps run, a long trail run, and the rest easy.
What one tip would you pass onto people running an Ultra marathon for the first time? If you can run a marathon, you can run anything you set your mind to. A strong mind is essential whether you are running to complete or compete.
Can you tell us one interesting fact about yourself? Powered by Gin… I just need to find a sponsor.
Have you taken part in the Spartathlon before? No
What are you looking forward to at the Spartathlon race? All of it! During the race i’ll be looking forward to sunset. I seem to get stronger when it gets dark and run well during the night.
What are you not looking forward to during the Spartathlon race? Leaving the children at home. It’s term time so they can’t come out.
How will you prepare specifically for the Spartathlon race? I’ll try and do some runs in hot weather, at home or on holiday.
Will you be bringing any support crew to the race? My wife may come out, but only if we can find someone to look after the children.