I should enjoy these quiet weeks while I can, I expect it will get busier soon, especially with the Slaughterford 9 next weekend.
I’m going to start this week by going to the Gloucester Marathon. After the disappointment of missing Abingdon Marathon due to injury after a solid training block, Lauren Edwards didn’t want to wait too long to get a marathon done and it was definitely worth it, a 9 minute PB at 3:41:03 and the fastest CRC lady at a marathon in 19 months. Fantastic Lauren.
The only other race this week was the Doynton Hard Half Marathon which saw the Mackies in attendance. Dave referred to it as a superbly organised event that is full of character. It is organised by ex-CRC member Neil Newman and the new club he set up at Emerson’s Green so we taught him everything he knows.
It’s been another quiet week this week as I can only find 5 racers and none of them put their pictures on Facebook for me to steal.
Marie Vinolo-Young was 1st V40 and 3rd lady overall at the nighttime Bath Skyline 10K on Saturday.
And on Sunday morning it was the turn of Stewart Unsworth, Geraint Morgan and Neil Andrassy to do the daytime version of the Bath Skyline 10K, or the soft option as it’s otherwise known.
Our other racer was Andrew Wood who did the Rough and Tumble, a 10 mile multi-terrain event. Perfect preparation for Slaughterford 9.
And of course, we had a full moon this week so a number of brave souls met in Bremhill for a Stewart Unsworth special. And unlike when David Mackie organises it, the moon stayed hidden and the weather was atrocious. Better luck next time Stewart.
It’s a relatively slow start to the year so far for races, although it seems a good number of our runners have taken the opportunity to recce the Slaughterford 9 course.
Jo Motto ran the Tadworth Ten. A 10 mile, fairly hilly event starting at Epsom Downs racecourse. It was Jo’s second time at this event and she was 7 minutes quicker this year.
The only other racer was Dave Townsend who took part in the Kelston 10K, although he says that it is closer to 11K and as a trail race with 800 foot of ascent, it’s definitely not a PB course, but Dave did manage a course PB.
New Year’s Day saw many of our members gathering at the Smallgrain Picnic Area near Cherhill for a 10km or 3km route to blow away the cobwebs and start the year off properly. Thanks to Andrew Wood and Jane Clarke for organising.
New Year’s Day is also a day when traditionally, many runners do a double parkrun. Local parkruns will stagger their start times to enable this and we had at least 8 of our members taking the opportunity. Special mention should go to Vicky Henderson who was first lady in both of hers (not that parkrun is a race) and also to Ed Harper and Max Luff, both of whom had their second parkrun as their 100th overall.
It’s that tricky time around Christmas when we all feel guilty that we should run more but then we often just think we’d rather dip into the chocolates instead so it’s great to see a few people did some racing this week.
We had 4 members in Warminster doing the 12.5 mile Plain Crazy event. A decent amount of climbing meant it was an ideal race for David Mackie, his 50th of the year! A champion innings.
We also had 4 members chasing the Gingerbread Man at Uffcott near Swindon. This race is definitely something a little different. Everyone is chasing a costumed gingerbread man and if you run, run as fast as you can, then actually you can catch him. You have about 5 miles to chase him down and 3 of our runners did manage it. And for your efforts you get an edible medal.
We had 3 people running at the Wye Valley Wander where John Hible took home the junior* prize of beer! Well done to John and also to his dad Steve and Caroline Cozier.
*juniors go up to 20 at Wye Wander, it’s not just the Welsh doing things differently.
The Luffs still like to run for Corsham even though they’ve moved to Gloucestershire where they did the Gloucester 10 and they also found Jo Motto doing the same race.
Christmas is also a time to be social and as such we have our 2 annual joint runs with our friends from Chippenham Harriers. We had the Castle Combe run on Christmas Eve, with multiple groups, distances and speeds there is something for everyone and there were huge numbers enjoying the countryside together and then returning to the car park for mulled wine and cakes.
Boxing Day was a much quieter affair at the Slaughterford 9 route, with the hardcore runners only.
And then there is Christmas day itself, where parkrun has become a tradition for many people. The Hendersons were first to do a Christmas Day parkrun as they’re on honeymoon in New Zealand so got a head start.
Chippenham parkrun had a new record as nearly 500 people took part. CRC had a number of members there running AND volunteering. Lots of people like to dress up in Santa hats or similar and some go just a little further than that.
It’s that time of year when race directors spend time with their families and not much happens.
However there was still the Hullavington 10 mile where we had 9 runners, David Mackie was in his Christmas gear but it didn’t make him any slower and Laura Midwinter was nearly in tears when the rain started 5 minutes before the race, but she got on with it and finished 2nd lady, I think she’s asked for a new mantelpiece for Christmas after an excellent 2019.
Early in the morning an intrepid group of 7 runners and Teddy the super dog took on the short, sharp rise up Little Solsbury Hill to see the winter solstice sunrise, a different view to the summer event but still looks spectacular and a much more civilised start time.
Special well done to Richard Biggs and David Mackie who did that and then went to race Hullavington.
We wish all of our readers a MERRY CHRISTMAS!
The December Newsletter is now available
It’s been another quiet week of races for the club, with 5 people attending 2 races.
First up was the Skirrid Mountain Fell Race which attracted Andrew Wood and Annika Davidson. This race looks like a classic fell race when you view the map. You start at the bottom of a mountain, run straight up to the peak and then immediately turn around and after 3.6 miles you’re back where you started. With a low entry fee of £5, the race could be said to be as cheap as chips and that’s what you get for competing along with a bear! Not a spelling mistake.
After last weeks Weston Christmas Cracker, Richard Biggs and Charlie Berry are well and truly in the Christmas spirit by joining Lois Norcott at the Westonbirt House Christmas 10K. There was a PB and maybe a first sub-50 for Charlie, it was definitely his first sub-50 since joining us and it wasn’t even close with a 48:49. Richard also managed a sub-50. Lois finished behind the other 2 but I can only assume that is because she did 10 times the elevation of everyone else in the race.
This week did also see our latest full moon run, this time from the White Hart in Ford for some new trails. With Thursday blighted by torrential rain for the majority of the day 13 people braved the wilds of North Wiltshire where there was ample opportunity to get the trainers muddy and then wash them again numerous times. 5 people took on the full 6 mile route led by David Mackie and 8 people followed Susan Mackie for a 4.5 mile jaunt. And of course as it was led by David Mackie, it actually stayed dry for the run!