Tim the Grim continued tradition on Sunday greeting suffering runners near the end of Hamilton’s Around the Bay 30K. The Grim Reaper, who has become a mainstay at the top of the climb on Valley Inn Road during the race, showed off his cruelty on the weekend taunting runners as they passed.
“You really have to stop running, it’s not good for you, smoking is healthier,” he says at one point.
Some common greetings back to Tim the Grim included “I love you,” and “I love seeing your face” in rather sarcastic tones. Unlike in 2016, Tim the Grim was alone in 2017. Last year, Grim Jr. was on hand doubling the amount of heckles aimed towards runners.
This year was particularly memorable for the Grim Reaper as the course reincorporated the Valley Inn Road climb, which had been absent for the previous two Around the Bays. CN Railway performed work on an overpass bridge which forced race organizers to reroute the course for 2015 and 2016. The hill is approximately 400m beginning at the 26K point of the race, daunting more so because of its timing rather than the grade.
Signs scattered the course along Valley Inn Road including a pair that read, when put together, “Please watch for dying runners.”
Around the Bay is North America’s oldest distance road race, first run in 1894, so it should come as no surprise that the race has developed certain traditions over the years. Tim the Grim remains, arguably, the most notable spectator.