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 – http://www.parkrun.org.uk/thornbury/
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.