Sunday, 12 November 2017

Derby 10 Mile

Julie and Robert Braker completed the Derby10 on Sunday. Nature provided an Arctic wind, which they really appreciated!
The course is flat and mostly away from roads. We ran along the riverbank and through the grounds at Elvaston Castle. So all in all a very pleasant route. The start and finish is at the Derby County football ground. Julie won yet another prize, coming first in her age group.

Theye would definitely recommend this one for next year.

Position Time Name
Grading Ranking

351 1:21:52 Julie Braker
89.82% 10
389 1:23:21 Robert Braker
69.81% 137

Saturday, 11 November 2017

Seagrave Wolds Challenge

The Seagrave Challenge was devised to encourage exploration of the rolling countryside around Seagrave, and to raise money to help towards the refurbishment and upkeep of Seagrave Memorial Hall and to support other good causes. 

2017 was the 13th consecutive Challenge. They wound the clock right back and will served up a route similar to one of their very first events. The 16 mile route was new but took in the villages of Wymeswold, Rempston, Prestwold, Burton-on-the-Wolds, Walton-on-the-Wolds. Offering some nice views of the lovely Wolds countryside and, with support from local landowners, getting rare access across private land.

This year GRC’s Rob Howbrook took part in a very wet and muddy event finishing in 46th place out of 586 runners in a time of 2:06:35.

Six Dales Circuit

Reunited with their daughters after the run

Grantham Running Club was represented by Mark Hillson and Paul Rushworth at the annual Six Dales Circuit event. The 25 Mile off road route begins in the sleepy village of Biggin and runners then visit Biggin Dale, Wolfscote Dale, Beresford Dale, Lathkill Dale, Bradford Dale and Long Dale. The weather for the event was ideal with periods of sunshine helping to evaporate the mysterious cloud which hung in the freezing valleys. Traditional Staffordshire oatcakes were served at the half way checkpoint before runners carried on through glorious Lathkill Dale negotiating slippery limestone. Particularly notable this year were the higher than usual number of herons that flanked the river banks.  Paul and Mark climbed a total elevation gain of 2,269ft on the event, they returned to Biggin together in what resulted in a PB time for Mark at his second attempt in a time of 5 hours 18 minutes. Paul recorded his seventh completion.      

You can read Paul's blog description of the 2012 event here

Sunday, 5 November 2017

Rockingham 10 Mile, Rockingham 10K, Rockingham 5K, and Rockingham Duathlon

With the lure of some of the best race medals on offer anywhere in the land, there was Grantham Running Club representation at all four of the events taking place at Rockingham Motor Speedway on Guy Fawkes Day. With performances almost as spectacular as the fireworks that filled the skies over the weekend, there was much to celebrate for the Green Army at Europe’s fastest racing circuit.
Thankfully the cold, wet and windy conditions that marred the 2016 event were not repeated this year, although the seemingly ever present wind gusting through the circuit meant that the sunny, somewhat chilly afternoon, could not be considered ideal for racing. The running races utilise both the infield circuit at Rockingham and parts of the 1.5 mile outer oval, which famously saw Indycars lap in excess of 210 mph in 2001 and 2002. Racing circuits generally make for great venues to hold running races and Rockingham is no exception, with wide, smooth, traffic-free tarmac, ample parking and toilet facilities.
Kirsty smashes PB
Martin does the10k
In the 5K race, Louise Kennedy made her race debut, finishing a highly commendable seventh in her age category, clocking 33:46. This is eight seconds faster than her best 5K effort at Belton House parkrun. CJ Walker took part in her first 5K race, finishing in 35:10, and there was much delight for Kirsty Carter, who smashed her previous best 5K performance at Peterborough parkun by nearly four minutes, coming home in 36:43. Also making her race debut, Marie Walker finished inside the top 100 in 41:01.
The 10K race, like the 10 mile event, was a round of the inaugural GRC GP Series. Eleven club members finished led home by Martin Carter, whose 50:43 earned him 60th position overall. He was followed by Claudette Joint (51:16) who was an excellent third in her age category on her race debut and twelfth woman overall and Rachael Smith, who ran superbly to better her old 10K PB by over three minutes - 51:35 also earning third position in her Age Category.  Hot on her heels was John Nevard, making his race debut and finishing in a fine 51:39.

Joe finished in 64:22
Suzanne Britz (53:59) was next to finish, taking a well deserved first position in her Age Category. Hazel Dunthorne made her 10K debut, finishing in 54:49, just ahead of a happy Simon Hartley, who got to ring the PB bell after beating his old best by over three minutes with 55:09. Novice racer Kirsty Truesdale suffered the pre-race nightmare of many a seasoned veteran when her GPS stopwatch showed a low battery warning. She put this first world problem behind her to run a storming 55:21, three minutes faster than her recently set previous 10K best. 

Tracey Smith finished inside the one hour barrier in 59:35, claiming third position in her Age Category. Mark Jessop followed in 61:35, bettering his old PB by an impressive four minutes and Claire Fritz was another to set a big new PB, finishing in 64:58.

Seven GRC members took part in the 10 mile race which incorporated the Northamptonshire 10 Mile Championships. Joe Clarke was first home, finishing thirteenth in 1:04:22 - especially impressive considering it was only Joe’s second race, although he is a seasoned parkrun campaigner. He was followed by the first of the near indistinguishable GRC twins, Matthew Atter, who claimed family bragging rights with 17th position in 1:05:34 on his 10 mile debut. This was nearly five minutes clear of brother Andy, who nonetheless could return home happy with a four minute improvement over his previous best 10 mile performance, clocking 1:10:13.

MKL on a bike
Andrew Pask finished in 1:07:47, just six seconds down on his 2016 ten mile time set almost exactly a year earlier. Peter Bonner continued his fantastic year of running, surpassing his 10 mile best set in June by nearly three minutes, clocking 1:08:45. Dean Riggall showed a return to form with his 1:11:36, with wife Julie concluding a highly successful day for the club when she recorded her first 10 mile finishing time of 1:36:17.

Earlier in the day GRC Club Chairman Matthew Kingston Lee finished third in the Rockingham Standard Distance Duathlon. It was noted that his 10K run of 35:09, that saw him lead into the transition for the 38km bike leg, was over 40 seconds quicker than the winner of the official 10K race, and his 5K run that followed the bike ride was 13 seconds quicker than the official 5K winner!

Age Grade
Louise Kennedy
CJ Walker
Kirsty Carter
Marie Walker

Age Grade
Martin Carter
Claudette Joint
Rachael Smith
John Nevard
Suzanne Britz
Hazel Dunthorne
Simon Hartley
Kirsty Truesdale
Tracey Smith
Mark Jessop
Claire Fritz

10 Miles
Age Grade
Joe Clarke
Matthew Atter
Andrew Pask
Peter Bonner
Andy Atter
Dean Riggall
Julie Riggall

Lincolnshire Runner XC League Match 2

Grantham Running Club was represented at the second fixture of this season's Lincolnshire Cross Country League which took place on Sunday 5th November at Castledyke Equestrian Centre, Boston. The weather was not what you class as normal cross country weather because there were blue skies and it was dry, making conditions favourable underfoot.
The course was mostly flat and fast with the biggest challenge coming from multiple 'water hazards' which had to be negotiated. These were tough but added to the team spirit, camaraderie & enjoyment of the event. The ladies course was approximately 6km (3 laps) whilst the men had to tackle a 4 lap course making approximately 10km.
First home for the ladies in a brilliant 12th position overall, was Andrea Ward 29:39, followed by Nicola Cottam 34:48, Nicola Fahy 34:52 and Margaretta Murray 39:38 completing the women’s team. Gordon Geach 50:31 was first home for the GRC men closely followed by Marc Tremain 53:17 and Ben Mason 54:29

Dovedale Dash

Dan enjoying mud and hills

Sunday 5th November saw the 61st running of the Dovedale Dash, with Daniel Towey the only Grantham Running Club member braving the November chill in the Peak District. Those unfamiliar with the 4 and ¾ mile course need only attend to the Race Marshall’s advice to “tie your running shoes really well!!” It’s renowned for being muddy, and this year was certainly no exception. The River Dove was noticeably high and with heavy overnight rain, the car park quickly turned into a quagmire; a sign of things to come. The resulting complications delayed the start by an hour, much to the dismay of the scantly-clad runners desperately trying to keep warm in temperatures well into the single figures.
The race starts with a mad dash from the top of Thorpe Pastures to the famous stepping stones over the River Dove. Stay on your feet is the name of the game as 1,500 runners charge downhill to get into a good position, the shear drops and muddy ground only raising the stakes. Hardy soles will run straight through the river, with the more cautious opting for the stepping stones. From here it’s 4 miles of heavily undulating terrain out to the village of Ilam, looping to run parallel to the River Dove, and then back up the long hill to the top of Thorpe Pastures. Daniel ran a solid race, at times feeling the effects of running the National Cross Country Relays the day before. He entered the bottom of the final hill in 103rd position, but hailing from North Wales, drew on his experience of hilly surrounds to claw himself into the top 100 up the 200ft climb, finishing in 96th position from 1,528 finishers in 35:54.
Reflecting on the race, Daniel commented “It was seriously tough out there and very difficult to get into any real rhythm, certainly the hardest I’ve known it. For the leg back along the River, it was so high you were basically running through it again! But year after year I come back to this race, it’s like nothing else, and the extra mud, on top of what I’ve become accustomed to, only made this one even more memorable”