Category Archives: Results

14th November 2017 – Results as reported this week

To gain a place in the most prestigious trail racing event in Europe, the Ultra Trail du Mont Blanc (UTMB), an athlete must first accumulate enough points in qualifying races. With this in mind, Nick Williams headed to the Welsh coast on Saturday to take part in Endurancelife Gower Ultra race, where 3 UTMB points were on offer. Nick has set himself the target of racing at UTMB in French Alps in 2018 and wanted a podium place in this hilly 35-mile race, which started and finished in Rhossili. In very windy conditions, Nick achieved his goal by finishing in an excellent 3rd place in 5 hours 40:38 mins.

A group of 28 runners and 14 volunteers came together at Mundy Playing Fields in Thornbury on Saturday for the Thornbury parkrun test event. With the inaugural Thornbury parkrun due to take place this Saturday 18th November, this was a chance for Event Director, Ian Shepherd, and his team of volunteers to test the course with a smaller group of runners. In damp conditions, the first finisher was Thornbury Running Club’s Robert Cowlard in 20:25 mins. Robert Hopkins from Thornbury RC is happier running longer distances, so decided to up the ante by running with a 25 kilo backpack and finishing in 39:43 mins. There promises to be many more than 28 runners when the first Thornbury parkrun starts at 09:00 on Saturday. Details of how to enter this free event can be found on the event website –

Andrew Darton was in Oxfordshire for Abingdon parkrun, which he finished in 23:37 mins. Experienced parkrunners, David and Anne Palmer, were at Forest of Dean event which they completed in 28:17 mins and 33:39 mins, respectively.

Regularly selling out in a matter of hours and attracting almost 1200 runners, The Sodbuy Slog in Chipping Sodbury and the surrounding countryside is one of the most popular local races. 3 Thornbury runners joined the masses over the 10-mile off-road course, which includes several muddy obstacles and leg sapping climbs. Maite Roche was the first finisher for the club in 1 hour 47:09 mins in 422nd place and 89th female. Sean Underwood was next in 1 hour 56:38 mins and Liam Symonds-Barry in 1 hour 58:01 mins in 578th place.


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7th November 2017 – Results as reported this week.

The second race in the Gloucestershire cross country league took place on Saturday at Charlton Park, near Malmesbury. Those lucky enough to enjoy the balmy weather in the first race at Blackbridge in early October were greeted by more familiar conditions this time, with an exposed wind swept park, water logged fields and slippery hills covered in mud. It was definitely a course for the purist.

Some of the early season enthusiasm and the numbers of Thornbury runners from the first race had ebbed away slightly. However, Cross-Country Captain Jim Godden was undeterred and managed to call in some favours to field a full men’s and women’s team.

The women’s team was a small, but experienced outfit of 4 runners who took part in a 6.4K race. In the early stages Clare Watt took the initiative and was closely followed by Jo Emerson. Jo acclimatised to the conditions in the first of the two-lap race, before winding up the pace and passing many of her tiring competitors in the second half. Jo was Thornbury’s first finisher in a very good 58th place out of 184 runners in 32:55 mins.

Clare was next and in 3rd place in the LV55 age category, a great achievement when racing amongst some of the strongest club runners in the area. Clare was 84th overall in 34:55 mins.

Angela Bushell is never one to shirk a challenge and as others grimly plodded to the finish, she waved to her team mates as she sped down the finishing straight, overtaking a couple of runners in the process. Angela was 111th in 36:36 mins. Judy Mills completed the quartet in 163rd place in 42:22 mins and was 4th in the LV60 age category.

The men’s 9.6K race was an extra lap around the heavily churned up course and 9.6K in total. Amongst the stalwarts, there were a couple of fresh faces to help boost the team up to 7 runners. Matt Johnstone made a cross country comeback after a 2-year hiatus and was the first finisher for the club in 82nd place in 42:12 mins.

Only 1 week after doing Beachy Head Marathon, Rob Watkins ran strongly to finish in 91st place in 43:00 mins. He was followed by Nick Langridge in 156th in 48:40 mins.

Robert Hopkins is slowly rediscovering his form after completing a Triple Ironman in September, even producing a closing sprint to overtake 2 runners at the end to finish 166th in 50:29 mins. Kevin Arnold managed to finish the course in normal road trainers without falling over, which was an achievement in itself. He skated around in 173rd place in 51:32 mins.

Anthony Yates and Jerry Clothier were locked in their own youth versus experience battle. In the end, this was a course for the more seasoned racer and Jerry had a little more in reserve to finish 1 place ahead in 196th in 59:10 mins to Anthony’s 59:47 mins.

Kevin Arnold warmed up for the cross country in the afternoon by taking part in the local parkrun in Swindon in the morning, which he completed in 22:48 mins.

Kevin Wood and Hugh McPherson were at Chipping Sodbury parkrun and finished in 23:30 mins and 24:14 mins. Mike Bennewitz ran Pomphrey Hill parkrun in 27:17 mins.


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16th October 2017 – Results as reported this week

The new cross-country season kick started to life at the weekend with the first race in the Gloucester League. There was a sense of optimism and enthusiasm in the air at Blackbridge amongst Thornbury’s runners, as the recent memory of barely being able to field a full complement of men’s and ladies’ teams was not in evidence on Saturday.

After all the children’s event had finished, the ladies approached the line to contest a 6.4K race. The Blackbridge course is a gentle reintroduction to the season, as it is largely flat with the odd short hill thrown in for good measure.

Following her recent Ironman success in Tenby, Taryn Roberts set off at a fast pace and maintained a good position throughout to finish Thornbury’s top placed runner in an excellent 24th place in 25:17 mins. Jo Emerson is one of a select group who regularly turned out for the club during the leaner years and she showed her experience by over hauling Colette Jackson and Lizzie Williams in the second half of the race. It was still close-run, Jo’s time was 27:10 mins in 57th place, Colette was 65th in 27:37 mins and Lizzie 66th in 27:43 mins. Both Colette and Lizzie were making their cross-country debuts for the club, so can be very pleased with their runs.

The over 65 men can compete in the ladies’ race or the longer men’s race and Club Captain, Pete Mainstone, chose the former this weekend, finishing in 146th in 33:47 mins. This was Judy Mills’ first race since returning from injury and she rounded off a great team performance in 159th place in 36:36 mins.

Nick Williams has been racking up an impressive series of races this season, but was still shocked at the early pace set by the top local club runners. However, he soon established a good rhythm in his first cross-country race for the club and was a clear winner amongst Thornbury’s runners in a very good 39th place in 32:01 mins in the men’s 9K race. The next 3 Thornbury runners were very closely matched and swapped positions throughout. In his first race since Ironman Wales, Dylan Roberts had just enough leg speed left to hold off a determined Rob Watkins. Dylan finished in 34:14 mins in 81st place, Rob was 86th in 34:34 mins and Andy Darton was only a short distance behind in 89th in 34:39 mins.
Moray Sloan and Nick Langridge were next in 37:47 mins in 147th and 38:41 mins in 161st place. In his second race of the day, Kevin Arnold was 180th in 41:30 mins and Anthony Yates finished 202nd in 48:20 mins.

The ladies team finished in a very good 10th place out of 39 and the men’s team found the going a little tougher in 13th out of 21 teams. Fortunes were reversed in the vets competition for the over 40s, the men were 5th out of 14 and the ladies were 17th out of 26 teams.

On 7th October, Kevin Arnold was in South Wales at the Caldicot parkrun and was 36th in 24:56 mins. Experienced parkrun travellers David and Anne Palmer were running in the North West at Haigh Woodland. David was 89th in 28:05 mins and Anne was 143rd in 34:22 mins. On 14th October, Kevin Arnold warmed up for the cross country later that afternoon with a quick blast around Gloucester North parkrun in 23:07 mins in 22nd place. 5 Thornbury runners joined a very busy Chipping Sodbury parkrun. Kevin Wood ran 22:46 mins, Malcolm and Karen Carr both ran 25:59 mins, while Suzy Cundy outsprinted her husband by 3 seconds in 30:31 mins.


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9th October 2017 – Results as reported this week

Each year Thornbury Running Club pays tribute to Steve Jones, who tragically died in 2004 running in a local 5k race for the club. One his favoured courses was the Oldbury Power 10 miler, so TRC club members compete amongst themselves in the Steve Jones Memorial Race on the same course.
This year’s race took place on Sunday and final positions were determined by the same handicap system used by parkrun, which takes into consideration age and gender to give an overall score. Nick Williams had the fastest time with a swift 1 hour 1:40 mins which gave him a 71.49% score. However, Nick Langridge’s time of 1 hour 12:42 mins resulted in an age-graded score of 77.74%, which was the clear winner. Others results on the day were Andrew Darton (70.42%), who bounced back well after suffering from stomach issues at Cardiff Half Marathon last weekend, Jo Plumbley (67.94%), Chris Foley (67.79%), Moray Sloan (66.27%), Hugh McPherson (65.39%), Kevin Arnold (59.69%), Steve Dimond (58.97%), Sonya Bryson (58.6%), Jim Williams (52.9%), David Flemington (51.5%) and John Francksen (48.05%).

Suzy Cundy and Cathy Watkins both graduated from the TRC beginner’s course to running their first marathon at the weekend. Alongside the more experienced racer, Angela Bushell, they travelled to the South Coast for Bournemouth Marathon on Sunday. Angela was first Thornbury runner in 4 hours 22:59 mins, followed by Suzy in 5 hours 28:19 mins and Cathy in 5 hours 43:45 mins.

Racing in her second ultra-marathon of the year, Ros Rowland ventured to the Gower peninsula for the ‘Gower Ultra 50’ on Saturday. This off road 50-mile race involved self-navigating the course along large sections of the coastal path, up and down into several bays and across leg-sapping beaches. In wet and muddy conditions, Ros used all her knowledge of these gruelling events to finish 50th out of 147 runners in a time of 12 hours 14:51 mins.

Maite Roche took part in The Mendip Muddle on Sunday, a hilly 12-mile off road race through the Mendip Hills. The Race Director is a keen observer of the local ancient history, as aside from the challenging terrain, the runners passed by Roman lead mines, Iron Age forts and ancient burial mounds. Maite is targeting a marathon next year and this race will have served as great preparation. She completed the Muddle in 2 hours 25:01 mins in 201st place.

Lastly, there were 4 results at Chipping Sodbury parkrun. Kevin Wood had the fastest time in 23:05 mins, followed by Kevin Cundy in 30:56 mins and first timers Rachael Underwood 31:17 mins and Sean Underwood 39:46 mins.


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TRC & Ultra Running

To many people the thought of continuing when you finish a marathon would seem unfathomable, but to ‘ultra-runners’ this is what drives them on. Officially, any race longer than a marathon is classed as an ‘ultra-marathon’, and there are a growing number of people who want to keep pushing their limits, racing longer and hillier courses.

Thornbury running club has several ultra-runners in their ranks and during August and September they were found in some far-flung places taking on some mammoth challenges.

Dave Beard raced the ‘CCC’ at the end of August, a 60-mile trail race through the Alps. The course starts in an Italian ski resort, crosses over the Swiss border and finishes in the French town of Chamonix. As well as the formidable distance and unpredictable alpine weather, it includes five dizzying mountain passes equivalent to scaling Ben Nevis four and a half times.
Some well-timed text messages of support from Helen, Dave’s wife, and an energising bowl of pasta at one of the aid stations kept him going through the night and towards France.
Dave said “I walked most of that final descent until I caught sight of civilisation. There was no way I wasn’t running through Chamonix and across the finishing line”. Dave finished in 1257th place out of a select group of 2155 runners in 24 hours 34:42 mins.

In September, Rob Watkins competed in ‘10 Peaks Long Course’, an 89 kms trail race through the Brecon Beacons. The race starts and finishes in Talybont-on-Usk, looping out through the Welsh hills, along craggy ridges and including almost 5,000m of climbing. The organisers sadistically advertise that they expect at least a 25% drop out rate from the people who start the race.
Rob’s experience of these races and the terrain helped him to a top 10 position. He finished in a fantastic 7th place in 13 hours 59:35 mins.

Any race that calls itself ‘The Brutal’ must be confident in its claim that it is a demanding course. The Brutal is a long-distance triathlon race with a vicious sting in its tail, an undulating run segment and an ascent and descent of Mount Snowdon.
Rob Hopkins is well known amongst his peers for his fondness of long-distance running events and triathlons. He set himself the highly ambitious target of the ‘Triple Brutal’ in 2017, which even by his standards was a step into the unknown. The race spanned 3 days from 16-18 September and is three times the distance of the standard long-distance or Ironman triathlon. There were only 9 people willing to take on the challenge and it requires a support crew.
The 7.2-mile swim section through the chilly Lake Padarn is the same distance as 461 lengths of Thornbury swimming pool. Rob completed that in 4 hours 47 mins and was welcomed by his support crew with a hot cup of tea.
The next section awaiting Rob was a 336-mile bike ride and he rode ahead of all the other athletes to lead the race after spending 28 hours 16:52 mins in the saddle.
All that stood in the way of Rob and the finish line was a 78.6-mile run, including Mount Snowdon. Rob’s preparation for the run had been affected by a few niggling injuries, but he still managed to drag himself around with the aid of his support crew in 24 hours 37:44 mins to finish in 3rd place after 2 and a half days of brutal exertion. (61 hrs 44 minutes)

Many thanks goes to his support crew; Ros Rowland, Garry Slater, Richard Philips and Dave Beard for helping to keep Rob fuelled, motivated and in some cases running in a straight line when fatigue and mental tiredness could have derailed what was an amazing achievement.


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Road Race Championships – Final Race and Standings

The final race of the series at The Two Tunnels 10 K took place today with 4 runners enjoying a rather unique experience of racing through tunnels.  Very well organised, nice venue and definitely one to do if you want something different.  Just one major change to men’s age adjusted in the final standings.  Well done the winners and those who came close or just had a go.

John Watt was reported in the results as finishing 35th in 41:31 and 1st V50.  However, this was due to him starting in the wrong wave 20 minutes sooner than he should have done.  Times and positions have been adjusted for our scores.  We decided not to go back and claim his prize!

But Claire was awarded best cake maker of the series.  Full results and final standings  –

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14th August 2017 – Results as reported this week

There was double age group success at the Old Down 10k on Sunday. The fields and undulating trails through the woods around Old Down Country Park are familiar to many of Thornbury’s runners and they used this local knowledge to great effect. Matt Johnstone was the first Thornbury runner in 5th place overall and was 1st VM40 runner in 45:39. The conditions were heating up on the second and final lap and even Moray Sloan’s trademark bandana was removed by the time he reached the finishing line in 51:17 in 13th place overall and 3rd VM40 runner.

Clare Watt paced herself around the tricky course well and was 1st VF50 and 36th overall in 56:58, a massive 13 minutes ahead of the next lady in her age group. After finishing, Clare was called into further action and used her medical training to help another runner who was overcome by the exertions of her race.

Recent recruit, Libby Pengelly, was next over the line in 45th place in 1:02:05, closely followed by Malcolm Carr in 1:02:11 in 47th place and 2nd MV60. Rachel Terrett was 78th overall in 1:09:09, Pippa Maidment 79th in 1:10:11 and Alice Porter 84th in 1:11:48.

John Watt was running in the one lap 5k race and finished in 23rd place in 37:38.

Ros Rowland clearly has an affinity for Wales as she often finds herself competing there. This weekend was the Port Talbot Half Marathon and Ros finished 90th overall and 10th female in 1:44:39. She also scooped top honours in the VF50 age category.

Thornbury runners took part in 5 different parkruns on Saturday. Andrew Darton was furthest afield at the Trelissick parkrun in Cornwall and must have been in a relaxed mood as he ambled around in 23:45 in 29th place, many minutes below his usual times.

Kevin Wood sliced a further 18 seconds off his best time in Chipping Sodbury to record a new personal best of 22:25 in 44th place. Kevin Arnold was 64th at Pomphrey Hill in 23:44.

John Grimsey was assisting some beginner runners near his home in Weston and finished in 302nd position at Burnham and Highbridge parkrun in a time of 42:27. David Palmer was at Kingsway parkrun in Gloucester this week in 100th position in 27:15.

In the Standish Woodland Chase Angela Bushell finished 4 mins faster than last year in 1:28:47 and Mike Bennewitz 1:32:38

That’s all for now. I’m away for a couple of weeks so unless someone else does the results the next report will be in 3 weeks time.

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Road Race Championships Race 5 Results

Race 5 of the Club ‘Road Race’ Championships took place last Sunday at Old Down and brought changes in the men’s leader board including a new leader.  Should have been there myself but was laid low by a nasty bug that chose me to zero in on. However, despite Pete’s jibes I’m pleased to report that my motivational speaking must have worked as we now have 3 men who already have more points than I can possibly muster.  One race to go next week at Two Tunnels 10 K to move up the rankings (places are still open).  Full results and standings on Road Race page –

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31st July 2017- Results as reported this week

The Magor 10k has a reputation for quick times, thanks in large part to its pancake flat course and a highly competitive field of club runners. Angela Bushell, Jim Godden and Nick Williams made the short crossing to Wales on Saturday in search of PBs.

Nick finished in 14th place overall, dipping under 38 mins for the second time this year in a time of 37:47. Jim spent the early part of the season nursing several injuries, but has been making up for lost time in recent weeks. Jim won the V55 age category and was 21st overall in 39:05 mins.

Angela capped a good day for the Thornbury trio by finishing in the top 3 of the V45 age category and 17th lady in 49:26.

Moray Sloan was 19th at Chipping Sodbury parkrun and was only 6 seconds adrift of his best time in 20:09. Kevin Wood was a first timer on the same course and finished 70th in 22:44. Malcolm and Karen Carr have over 120 appearance between them on the Chipping Sodbury course and posted times of 25:54 (142nd) and 26:07 (149th / 29th lady), respectively. Elizabeth Dix crossed the line in 157th / 33rd lady in 26:25.

Paul Thomas has been taking his son down to the Yate athletics track for years and decided it is never too late to join in. Paul threw himself into the deep end by taking on the 1500m at an Avon League Match on Sunday. In a field of 8 runners Paul finished in 3rd place in 5:14. If that wasn’t enough for one day, Paul ran the blue riband 100m event in 14.0 in 5th place.

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24th July 2017- Results as reported this week

Ros Rowland headed to Wales on Sunday for the third Snowdonia Trail Marathon. After a steady procession of stamina sapping hills and technical trails, the race culminates with a long climb up Wales’ highest peak. Ros’ finishing time was 6:12:02, which placed her 227nd overall and a very respectable 2nd in the F50-54 age category.

Jim Godden is building up for the Bristol Half Marathon in September and as part of his preparation travelled to The Bath Running Festival on Sunday. With a range of races from 5k up to the Marathon distance, Jim competed in the 10k event on a hilly course around the University grounds. Jim had a great race, finishing 2nd out of 222 runners in 44:38 and was 1st in the 50-59 age category.

Chipping Sodbury parkrun proved to be the most popular with Thornbury’s runners again. Angela Bushell was top performer on Saturday, breaking her personal best on this course in 23:54 in 77th place and 10th female. David Palmer was 146th in 27:12, Karen Carr was just 1 place behind in 27:15 and was followed by Anne Palmer in 266th in 31:52.

Liam Symonds Barry was back at the Gloucester North parkrun for a second week in a row. His time of 24:35 placed him in 41st position.

Sean Underwood and Rob Hopkins braved the waters near Canary Wharf at the world’s largest triathlon event on Saturday, the AJ Bell London Triathlon.

Sean has been a man on a mission this year, racing frequently and recently turning his attention to triathlon. Sean was competing in his first Olympic distance triathlon, a 1.5k swim, followed by a 37.5k bike and 9.9k run. Sean finished the course in 2:43:22 ( 36:06 swim, 1:10:09 bike and 47:11 run ) in 1156th place and 198th in M35-39 age category.

Rob Hopkins has years of triathlon experience behind him and is a multiple Ironman finisher in different countries. Later this year, Rob will tackle a triathlon three times longer than the Ironman distance over 420 miles in North Wales. This weekend, Rob took on the more straight forward ‘Olympic Plus’ distance in London. Rob was in a field of 265 competitors and after a solid 1.5k swim of 27:31, set off on an elongated 80k bike section and completed it in 2:13:22, an average speed of 36km/h. He rounded off his day with a 43:29 10k run, to finish 20th overall and 2nd in the M40-44 age category.

That’s all this week.

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