With race day upon us, no pain in the ankle and the watch having safely landed on UK soil, it looked as though I was all set. How optimistic of me! The Desert Chronograph disappointingly never made it past UK customs. Nevertheless, we called in reinforcements, and the stunning Bell & Ross BR126 was on my desk at 14:00 ready for departure at 15:00. The BR126, although beautiful, felt rather bulky and cumbersome on my wrist at first, and I was dreading the thought of what state the leather strap would be in by the end of the race on my sweaty skin.
Standing at the start of the race in the sunken moat of the Tower of London with crowds of cheers encircling us from above, I felt rather out of place compared to my fellow runners. Digital countdown ahead, iPhones in every hand, earphones in, running apps poised to go, and myself – no earphones, no phone, just me and my wrist, with my finger hovering over the pusher to activate the chronograph function of the BR126. The competitive streak shaking at the ready, the bell rings and ‘click’, I compress the pusher, the gruelling experience begins. After 3km I check the watch and somewhere through my blurred running vision I see the chronograph dial, an airplane arrow, hovering somewhere over 12mins which indicated that I had definitely set off at quite a pace for myself, one which I was never going to keep up for 10km. I cooled off the pace into a steady rhythm until the beginning of kilometre 7. I took a more precise look at the watch to gauge myself and the airplane was pointing at 25mins, I could not believe it, 15mins to complete the last 3km and get home in a total of 40mins, my original target time was more than doable!