Monday, 29 August 2016

Billingborough 10K

Grantham Running Club's Gav Meadows made the short trip to Billingborough on bank holiday Monday to take part in the first staging of the village's 10K race. This was basically a 'test' event & was kept small & low key with only 100 runners lining up on the start line. There was also 5K 'Fun Run' which set off just before the 10K race. The whole event was a huge success & next year should see a much bigger event. Gav crossed the finish line comfortably in a time of 43:52.

Gav said 'This was a pretty challenging 10K with some long, steady climbs & some fairly hot weather too. I felt that I paced it quite well & couldn't have performed much better on the day all considered. Although small, this was a very enjoyable & well organised event & I have no doubt that it will become a fixture on the local race calendar when it expands next year.'

Sunday, 28 August 2016

Portrush 5 Mile Road Race

Grantham Running Club's Andrew & Sara Pask competed in the inaugural Portrush 5 mile road race whilst on holiday near N. Ireland's Giant's Causeway. This scenic race started in front of the famous Royal Portrush Golf Club, home of the 2019 Open Championship. With a steady climb for the first two miles, the Grantham pair grit their teeth knowing that the 2nd half of the race would be easier. The course ran along the stunning Causeway Costal Route and with clear conditions, an incredible sunset and even a rainbow (oh yes!). Andrew Pask was first to finish on Portrush East Strand with a time of 33:12. GRC beginners course graduate Sara finished strongly to post a time of 50:08. Sara said, 'The course was incredible and the views really kept me going. I'd like to have run a faster time but having recently returned from injury I was just pleased to be on the start line again'.

Photo: Sara Pask after a strong finish

Monday, 22 August 2016

Hills and Dales

Hills and Dales

Three members of Grantham Running Club travelled to the Peak District to participate in the 'Hills and Dales' 26 mile trail marathon. The event runs annually to raise funds for Chernoybl Aid UK, a charity that delivers aid to Belarus, for people who are living with the legacy of the Chernobyl nuclear disaster. Penny Hodges, Mark Hillson and Paul Rushworth represented the club and decided to run together for safety in the inclement weather conditions. The race began near Hollingsclough and visited, Harthington, Milldale, Wetton and Warslow including a descent through the Woolfscote Dale. By halfway, the weather had improved to reveal picturesque views through Dovedale which nestled below the hills where the trio were running. In the final four miles of the event the heavens opened again, Penny, Mark and Paul returned soaked and tired in 6 hours 21 minutes. Over £500 was raised for the charity.            

(Picture: Mark Hillson)

Saturday, 20 August 2016

Sleaford 10k

In a total field of just over 200, no less than 17 Grantham Running Club members took park in the annual 10km road race around the rural village of Scredington, hosted by Sleaford Striders on Friday evening. With the promise of freshly baked cakes at the finish the club did not disappoint with 2 members claiming podium finishes and 4 personal best times. Chris Armstrong ran an excellent race to finish in first place in his MV50 age category with a time of 40:02, breezy conditions scuppering his chances of running sub 40 minutes. Holly Durham claimed 2nd placed female overall with a seasons best time of 41:37, just 6 seconds outside her best ever at this distance; excellent preparation for her upcoming 24hr solo effort in September! Ben Hodgkin continues to impress and he was the first club member home finishing 4th overall with an impressive 38:17. Dean Riggall ran an excellent time of 42:14, followed home by Andy Atter in 42:35 and Gav Meadows in 42:42. Other club members came through thick and fast with Jamie Garcia claiming a PB time of 44:38, Liam Vincent also ran a PB time of 46:43 before Andrew Macallister became the 3rd PB home in 46:59. Charnia Kirk followed in 48:34. Nev Chamberlain continued his comeback from injury with a great time of 49:35 followed by Paul Durham in 51:01, Suzanne Britz in 51:55 and Jacqueline Jacobs in 58:22. Nick Jones rounded off the PB's with a time of 58:36 followed by Yvonne Buckley in 62:41 and Brendan Buckley in 63:49.

Thursday, 18 August 2016

Barnie Memorial 5k

The annual "Barney" 5k is run in tribute to Mike Barnsdale, the former Nene Valley Harriers Chairman, GB triathlete and England Master cross country runner right up until he lost his battle with skin cancer at the age of 56. As is fitting for one of the fathers of local athletics the event once again attracted a quality field with Aaron Scott of Lincs Wellington first man home in 15:13 and Rachael Doherty first lady in 17:14. GRC's Catherine Payne was the first local runner in picking up the prize for first in the age group with a time of 20:31, which was a PB, followed by teammate Robert McArdle, not quite at his best, in a time of 22:28.

Sunday, 14 August 2016

Newark Half Marathon

Matthew Williamson runs a strong first half marathon
Sunday 14th August saw the return of the Newark Half Marathon after a five year absence. Starting in Devon and Sconce Park, runners headed out into the usually sleepy, meandering country lanes. Well organised and supported by charity partner, Beaumond House and the town's four running clubs, the event saw locals lining the route which included sites of some of the bloodiest civil battles in our Country's history, this time armed with high fives, jelly babies and even homemade chocolate brownies to sustain this weekend's warriors.
Among the 800 participants to brave the battle were Grantham Running Club Members. Paul Davis narrowly missing out on a personal best, steaming home in an impressive time of 1:34:50, his second half distance in seven days. Second home was half marathon debutant Matthew Williamson with an incredible 1:36:00, finishing 4th in his U23 age category. First GRC lady to cross the line was new recruit, SJ Willis who ran a surprisingly strong race on the flatter course and achieved a personal best of 1:47:26, her furthest distance since the London Marathon in April this year. Close on SJ's heels was Neil Emerson, coming in at 1:49:35 and Sinead McDonnell who cracked the sub 2 hour mark with a commendable 1:58:46. First timer, Michelle Allbones, who returned to running after three weeks on the bench with a calf tear, arrived at the finish to applause from supporters and fellow club members after 2:27:47 of incredibly determined running.

Bridport Jurassic Coast Half Marathon

Bridport Jurassic Coast Half Marathon

GRC's Paul Davis travelled to Dorset to take part in the 3rd Bridport Jurassic Coast Run which took place last weekend, it was a grand day for everyone participating, despite constant rain and Thornecombe Beacon being almost inaccessible due to heavy fog. It was also a huge success for the joint organisers Bridport Runners and the Brit Valley Rotary Club. The route includes so of the most gruesome climbs in the south coast so a fast time is never going to be possible but Paul's 2:03:15 was good enough for 12th place

Saturday, 13 August 2016

Castle Rock 10k and Dovedale Dipper

Grantham Running Club’s Paul Rushworth continued his build up to his autumn ultra with two races in three days. The first was the Castle Rock 10k in which he was joined by teammates Jaime Garcia and Peter Bonner over an undulating two lap course in the University of Nottingham Campus. Paul was able to run a steady race and pace himself to finish in exactly 44 minutes as first home in the trio. Shortly behind him setting a substantial PB was Peter just dipping below the 45 minute mark by one second. The final man hone was Jaime in a brave 45:53 nursing an injured leg.

The second leg of Paul’s weekend was the Dovedale Dipper, a 27 mile circular run through the Peak District National Park which included of a thousand feet of climb. Joining him on the run were Catherine Payne and Robert McArdle with Nev Chamberlin opting for the 15 mile walk version in which he was first home. Although it was almost a decade since he last competed here Paul was able to navigate the route in just over 5 hours for a top ten finish some twenty minutes in front of Catherine and Robert

Tuesday, 2 August 2016

5 miles and 5k's and St Ives

 St Ives 10k
 Grantham Running Club's Catherine Payne picked up her third age category place win in 11 days following up her prize at the Notfast 10k with a season's best over the same distance at St Ives and a lifetime best at the Peterborough Grand Prix. The St Ives 10k is an out and back course taking runners up rural lanes to loop the taxiways of RAF Wyton airfield before returning to the outdoor leisure centre and as the event incorporated the Cambridgeshire 10k County Championships it attracted a number of high quality runners in the 700 strong field. Catherine was sixth lady home in a time of 43:29 with teammate Robert McArdle coping less well in the heat finishing in 47:22 as third in his age group on a tough day that saw many runners pulling out before the end.

Peterborough 5k  Grand Prix

Ferry Meadows was the venue for the latest leg of the Peterborough Grand Prix 5k with hosts Thorney opting for the full loop course. Despite it being one of the hottest evenings of the year there were still over 200 runners trying to score points. Catherine's time of 20:48 was not only a PB but it the first time she had exceeded the 80% WMA score at this distance, Robert McArdle's time of 22:05 was also a season's best and good enough score over 70%

Notts 5 Mile Road Race
This race, which comprises of two laps around the Victoria Embankment, is widely regarded as being flat and fast. This year, however, the humid conditions provided an additional challenge yet the Grantham Running Club contingent still posted some excellent times. First home in a GRC vest was the evergreen Rob Howbrook, with a time of 32.48, scored a magnificent age grade of 78%. Close behind was Scott Jones who suffered in the latter stages from his very fast start yet still managed an excellent time of 33.09. Andy Atter again paced his race perfectly to finish in 34.14; Daniel Howson dipped under the forty minute mark with a time of 39:23 with Nev Chamberlain just outside in a time of 40.20. Nick Rossington succumbed to stomach cramp and was forced to drop out.

Lincoln Wellington 5k - Tuesday 26th July
Chris Armstrong and Nick Rossington represented Grantham Running Club in the July race of the Lincoln Wellington clubs 5k series. The run comprises of 3.5 laps along the cycle path around Yarborough Sports Centre. On a fairly humid night with a stiff breeze, Chris paced his race to perfection with a time of 19.14. Nick learned from his recent pacing issue at the Notts 5 miles to record a time of 19.46 in his first 5k road race. The next race in the series is on 23rd August.