Sunday, 19 March 2017

ALDI Ashby 20

Dean, Gav, Caroline, Paul, Penny and Holly
Ten members of Grantham Running Club made the trip to Ashby de la Zouch for this years Ashby 20 mile race. The popular event regularly sells out within hours and windy yet relatively mild conditions greeted the 1300 runners taking part over the undulating course.
Chris was first home for GRC

Many of the club members were using it as a tester ahead of forthcoming marathons with spring marathon season looming in April and came armed with the gels, sweets and fluids needed to get them through a tough race. The Ashby 20's unique appeal though is also about the hoody and cheese cob awarded to all finishers when they arrive back in the town after two laps around the local villages and this meant many runners at the start were discussing the what colour the hoody would be rather than dwelling on the challenge ahead.

First in for Grantham Running Club was Chris Limmer whom came close to a personal best despite the conditions. It was his fifth run around the course and over took former local rivals from his past life living and working in Leicestershire towards the end as legs tired and pushed on to finish in 15th place in 2:04:08 and get his hands on another hoody for the collection.

Not far behind were a number of runners whom had fantastic runs. Gav Meadows ran steady and was really pleased with 2:22:16 and 128th place. By just after half past 12 a few more club members had joined and collected their hoodies. Dean Riggall was next in 2:27:48 Paul Davis came in with a time of 2:29:06 and Holly Durham was first lady in for GRC in 2:30:18. Holly was worrying she would suffer over the longer distances but thankfully put any potential thigh issues to bed with a really good performance and is now in a really strong position to do well in the London Marathon in April.

Paul Davis
Soon after, the rest of the merry band of GRC runners made it into the finish. Despite not having her finest race Penny Hodges still did really well to get in under 3hours in 2:53:18. Nick Payne was only just ahead in 2:51:45. Next and fresh from her 50th parkrun the day before Caroline Davis was also running well completing the course in 3:00:14 with Andrew Spencer close behind in 3:01:09 before Neil Emerson came in shortly after in 3:16:16.
A great race and the support around the largely traffic free course made up for the challenges of running uphill into a headwind like the runners did half way through the race.

Now many in the club begin the final preparations for hopefully a really successful spring marathon season with some beginning the taper down to marathons on 2nd April with others having slightly longer till 23rd April's London Marathon.

Position Time               Name
15 2:04:08 Christopher LIMMER
128 2:22:16 Gav MEADOWS
183 2:27:48 Dean RIGGALL
201 2:29:06 Paul DAVIS
215 2:30:18 Holly DURHAM
521 2:51:45 Nick PAYNE
538 2:53:18 Penny HODGES
672 3:00:14 Caroline DAVIS
682 3:01:09 Andrew SPENCER
899 3:16:16 Neil EMERSON

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