Report on the Cotswold Way Relay 24/06/17

There were some highly impressive individual and team performances at the 25th running of the Cotswold Way Relay on Saturday. Mike Bennewitz and Judy Mills had marshalled the troops expertly, reminded everyone to do their recces and managed to get everyone’s race bibs to them on time. All that was required now was the race itself and 103 miles to complete.

The Male Vets Team aka ‘Thornbury Quality Street’ were aiming to shed their bride’s maid tag, as Rob Watkins memorably remarked, and become the bride. Confused? You should be!

The day started well for the Vets with early trump cards Roger Denton and Rob Cowlard setting a good pace in legs 1 and 2. Rob took another club leg record in the process and now holds 4, erasing Roger’s previous record by 4 seconds.

At the halfway mark Jim Godden, Martyn Green and Rob Hopkins handed over in 1st place. Could the others hang on with the hosts, Bath AC Vets, breathing down their necks? The short answer is no, but it was still a glorious effort by all concerned. A combined time of 13:14:36 was slightly faster than last year’s performance and left the Vets within 3 minutes of Bath in 2nd place again.

Paul Clarke and Rob Cowlard were the highest placed finishers of the team – both taking 6th place in a packed field of quality runners.

The 2 Mixed Teams, ‘Thornbury Dolly Mixtures’ and ‘Thornbury All Sorts’ were a perfect blend of youth and experience. The 2 teams featured 3 Kings and Queens of the Cotswolds (Arthur Renshaw, Ros Rowland and John Grimsey), awards given to runners who have completed all 10 legs.

The winning team were the Dolly Mixtures who completed the course in 16:53:19 in 39th place out of 61 teams.

We think the provisional result of 13th for the All Sorts was incorrect as it omits the time of one of the team members. The combined time of 17:13:52 places them in about 48th place.

Taryn Roberts’ set a second club record, this time on leg 4 in only her second outing. She finished 28th overall and 2nd lady in a time of 1:44:00, which beat the previous mark set in 2009 by over 7 minutes!

3 new Kings and Queens of Cotswolds were crowned. Nick Langridge, Martyn Green and Judy Mills joined the ranks, which now totals 9 runners.

Summer Handicap Final Results

Good to see increasing numbers taking part in the handicaps and enjoying it. The late decision of the race organiser to change the course to a shorter route did mean the handicaps then favoured those with smaller handicaps and the overall results favoured those who did take part in the last race but it was either that or be trampled by cows.
So, the results for the 3rd of the Summer Handicaps, held last night, 22nd June and the final standings with the best 2 of 3 to count are now available here –
Any issues with race or timings to the race organiser, any issues with mis-spellings, typing errors or names to me for correction.

19th June 2017 – Results as reported this week

After requiring oxygen following last year’s Midsummer Clevedon 10k, Paul Thomas returned undeterred to tackle this highly competitive midweek race. Paul was Thornbury’s first finisher in 44:16 mins in 154th place, followed by the fast improving Sean Underwood in 44:44 mins in 164th place.

Ros Rowland continued her fine run of form in 10k road racing with 3rd place in the VF50 age category in a highly respectable 45:35 mins (186th overall) and recent recruit, Colette Jackson, had a great race to finish 5th in the VF40 age category (191st overall) in 45:58 mins.

Nick Langridge was Thornbury’s lone representative at Dursley Peaks Challenge on 31st May, which takes in some of the most challenging and hilly terrain in the local area. This is Nick’s kind of race and it showed as he was the 1st VM60 runner by a margin of 3 minutes and 77th overall in 45:03 mins.

Nick used the Peaks Challenge as a warm up for the Tour of Tameside. The Tour is a series of races on consecutive days set in Greater Manchester and was originally launched by running legend Ron Hill. In its current form of 4 races from Thursday – Sunday last week, it includes a variety of road and off-road races.

The first stage was X-Trail 10k, followed by the 6 mile ‘Hell on the Fell’. The ‘Hell on the Fell’ starts with a fast drop down for a mile, before 2 miles of climb and a perilous descent on a rocky path to the end. Nick finished in 78th position in 49:12 mins and at the Tour’s half way point had already racked up 2 wins in the VM65 age category.

Only 14 hours later was Hero Half Marathon. Nick is a seasoned competitor who still holds the club marathon record, but found the going exceptionally tough. Hot and humid conditions, combined with weary legs and an undulating trail course took their toll. His time of 1:47:01 was 8 mins slower than last year but he was 3 mins clear of his next VM65 competitor.

By now, Nick’s competitors must have been hoping he wouldn’t turn up for the final event on Sunday – the Dr Ron Hyde 7 mile. Of course, they would be disappointed as Nick battled the 27 degree conditions and completed a flush of victories in VM65 age category in 54:35 mins. His overall time of 4:15:51 was good enough for 58th overall and 11 mins clear of his closest age group rival.

Ros Rowland and Rob Hopkins travelled into central Wales on Sunday for Offa’s Dyke 15. This off-road race starts in Hay-On-Wye and follows the hilly Offa’s Dyke path towards Kington. Rob was 40th in 2:27:07 and Ros used some of that 10k speed to finish 4th in her age category and 59th overall in 2:39:19.

Malcom and Karen Carr ran well in the heat to set new personal bests at the Lee-on-the-Solent parkrun to finish 99th and 114th overall (11th female) in 25:27 mins and 26:15 mins, respectively.

Chris Dawes was 56th at Pomphrey Hill in 23:26 mins and Liam Symonds-Barry was 136th in Gloucester in 27:29 mins. David and Anne Palmer were 191st and 264th (87th female) in 28:57 mins and 33:39 mins, respectively.

5th June 2017 – Results as reported this week

Thornbury Running Club has chosen Meningitis Research Foundation as its charitable partner in recent years. Club Chairman and former Paralympic athlete and coach Craig Carscadden presented a cheque to Chloe Milloy from Meningitis Research Foundation for £1,109 for the last 12 month’s fundraising efforts. Many thanks go to the club members who made the delicious cakes at January’s Riverbank Rollick race which generated the bulk of the donations. Cake and hungry runners are an irresistible combination.

Martyn Green’s running renaissance continues as he returned to the Aztec West Fast 5k for the second month in a row. In April the runners had to deal with a sudden hail storm, but the conditions for last Tuesday’s race were much more favourable. Martyn knocked off 30 seconds from his April time to record a super quick 17:48 mins, finishing 37th overall and 1st place in the VM45 age category amongst many of the quickest runners in the Bristol area.

Thornbury runners were represented in 6 different parkruns on Saturday.

Paul Thomas produced a fantastic run to break his personal best by 10 seconds at Gloucester Kingsway Parkway parkrun and finished 7th overall in 19:40 mins. He was followed by Liam Symonds-Barry who was 44th in 22:56 mins.

John Grimsey ventured to Burnham and Highbridge’s parkrun for the first time and finished 348th in 43:37 mins. He was quick to point out that he was gallantly escorting some slower runners around the course, which explained the more leisurely pace.

Tom Usherwood was back in action in Stone and finished in 6th place in 21:08 mins. Former Thornbury runner Paul Horsfall was 1st in 18:13 mins.

Andrew Darton was in Yeovil and finished 11th in 20:19 mins and Chris Dawes crossed the line in 145th in 22:10 mins at Chipping Sodbury.

Matt Johnstone joined 453 runners at Pomphrey Hill parkrun on a beautiful morning for a run and finished 16th in 19:31 mins.



29th May 2017 – Results as reported this week

The Cape Wrath Challenge dubs itself as the most challenging marathon on mainland Britain. This is hardly surprising as Saturday’s multi-terrain marathon, held on 20th May this year, is the final stage of a 6-day running festival. The marathon includes a 2,500 ft climb and 2 ferry crossings for good measure. It is set in the most North Westerly point in Scotland, with the runners exposed to some of the most extreme conditions and stunning wilderness of any race in the British Isles.

Judy Mills has proven herself adept at conquering this brutal event, as she has been returning to these shores since 2006 in a 12-year unbroken sequence of appearances. This year she completed the out and back to the lighthouse in Cape Wrath in 5 hrs 33:59 mins in 88th place.

Less taxing than the Cape Wrath Challenge was Monday night’s Hogweed Trot 10k, through the winding and rolling country lanes near Yate. The race also served as the Avon Championships 10k race and often attracts some speedy runners from local clubs. The stand out performance was Ros Rowland, whose speedy time of 45:48 mins was a new PB and 2nd in VF50 age group, 13th female and 99th overall.

First finisher for the club was Matt Johnstone who finished 22nd and 4th in VM40 age category in 40 mins exactly. Nick Langridge was also 4th in his age category (VM60) and 66th overall in 43:47 mins.  Liam Jones and John Watt were next over the line in times of 49:37 mins and 1 hr 01:47 mins in 161st and 349th place, respectively.

Chris Dawes ran his 72nd parkrun to finish 145th at Chipping Sodbury in 20:02 mins.

The triathlon season is slowly kicking into life and one of the races which has converted many a runner into a multi-sport devotee is the Westonbirt Sprint Triathlon. Sean Underwood embarked on his first triathlon and completed the 400m pool swim, 24k bike and 5k run in 1hr 23:53 mins ( 9:50 swim, 44:01 bike and 23:52 run ), to finish in 126th position.

Mike Bennewitz finished in the driving rain in 329th place in 1hr 39:47 mins ( 10:08 swim, 53:55 bike and 26:15 bike ).

That’s all this week

Road Race Championship Race 2 Results and Standings

Last night, 15th May, saw the 2nd of this season’s Road Race Championships at the Berkeley 10K.  17 Thornbury runners took part with Nick Williams leading home the men and Clare Watt the women.  Paul Thomas now has the lead in the men’s championship with Clare Watt leading the women’s.  Full results and standings on the Road Race championship page