Weekly Review – Week Ending 20th October

It’s been another champion weekend for CRC.

Laura Midwinter took Marie Vinolo-Young with her to her home town of Barrow to take on the Abbey Ascent, a 6 hour looped event of 5K. You do as many loops as you can in the 6 hours.

And they both bought trophies home for 1st and 2nd lady as they both completed 10 laps (31.07 miles, so their first ultras too) in just under the 6 hours. They were 2nd and 3rd overall as 4 ladies finished in the top 6.

At Abingdon Marathon we had two runners and both of them got a PB. Mark Cortaville took 12 minutes off his time to come in just over 3:35 and Nick Maryon just missed out on a sub-4 by 20 seconds but still a PB.

Christopher Siggery also got a marathon PB as he did his first – The Dramathon. A nice jaunt around 8 Whisky distilleries in the highlands, and it netted you possibly the best goody bag I’ve ever seen. Unlike the Medoc marathon, you don’t get to try the Whisky until you’ve finished.

3 of our runners travelled to Minehead for the Exmoor Stagger. 16 miles and 3,600ft of ascent, mean this isn’t a race for the faint-hearted. All 3 of our runners finished in the top half of the race.

Andrew Wood had a change from his usual lumpy run by doing a flat 5K on roads. Nah, only kidding, he did the Yorkshire 3 peaks ultra. A 70k run, up and down 3 mountains in the Yorkshire Dales national park in just under 12 hours. Unfortunately he hasn’t shared any photos on Facebook so no mountain scenery in the weekly review this week.

Darren Thorley did the Great South Run for the 3rd consecutive year and improved his time again. He did 1:15 in 2017, 1:14 in 2018 and is down to 1:13 for this year. If he keeps up this progression he’ll win the race at some point in the future. Good luck Darren.

Weekly Review – Week Ending 13th October

This was definitely a week for pushing out of your comfort zone.

We had 6 runners taking part in the Run With No Witty Name 50K. 3 of them were Becky Townsend, Helen Ashworth and John Ashworth. All of whom were doing their first ultra.

This photo is before they started and got soaked through.

Also testing themselves were Craig Rumble and David Warren at the Snowdon Ultra. 50 miles of hills and rocks and hills and mud and hills and weather and hills. They ran together and finished in equal 19th place.

Damian Hall was also running around the hills, coming 2nd at the Lakes in a Day ultra. This was also 50 miles of hills and rocks and mud.

Just going further or going up and down big hills isn’t the only way to test yourself and we had some fantastic performances at shorter distances too.

First up was Laura Midwinter, who came 1st at the AVR Wiltshire Half Marathon and set a PB. Laura is going to need an extension to the mantelpiece soon.

Dave Townsend also took part in a half marathon at the Windsor Lakeside around the Olympic Rowing Lake at Eton Dorney. He just missed out on a PB, but a great run all the same.

There was also a narrow miss of a PB for Katharine Burrett at the Grittleton 10K. Lois Norcott (54:07) and Rebecca Edwards (48:13) did both get a PB.

Thursday night saw another chance for people to move out of their comfort zone as we had the full moon run from Bradford-on-Avon. Of course, Lois Norcott and Katharine Burrett joined us for the first time, hopefully we’ll see them again next month with many other new people as we run from Heddington.

Weekly Review – Week Ending 6th October

Corsham Running Club has pulled together yet again to help put on a running event at the Marshfield Mudlark.

David Bethune has been the race director for many years and always puts on a great event. With the preceding weeks of rain, the course certainly lived up to the mud part of the name but David had managed to find the only sunny day available and the spectacular views could be appreciated by all.

Only 3 runners from Corsham were involved but many, many more volunteers helped the smooth running, well done to everyone.

It was a family affair again for Richard Biggs as he ran the same event as his daughter Caty for the second week running. This time they were at the Cardiff half marathon, where CRC were also represented by Gareth Evan’s.

The Bournemouth running festival saw two of our members at the marathon as Ade Hurren finished in just over 3:10 (only 3 minutes behind the M55 winner) ad Jo Gill timed her finish to perfection at 3:59:56.

Also at Bournemouth there was a PB for Timothy Wilen in the half marathon of 1:34:30.

And that was not the only PB of the weekend as Charlie Berry finished the Cricklade 10K in 50:22. I’m sure it won’t be long before breaking the 50 minute barrier.

Also in running action this week we had Daniel Parker at the Westbury 10K and Chris Hunt at the Saltmarsh Ultra 75k (although just over 80 in reality).

This week also saw the first week of our transition month at training sessions where the emphasis is on encouraging people to try the next group up if they feel they want to. Many people did and it was a successful couple of evenings. Hopefully more people will keep trying it and increase their confidence.

And finally, it has been said before that CRC are a food and drink club that likes a spot of running. This would explain why 15 people jumped at the chance to have a short run around Holt followed by a tour of the Box Steam Brewery who support our 10K and Hazelbury Hurrah! events.

Organised by David Mackie, the event went down well although not as well as the taster samples.

Weekly Review – Week Ending 29th September

We’re back to a regular weekly review this week.

Starting at the Devizes 10K which was a club championship event. We had 12 runners there setting some excellent times, leading the way for Corsham were John Wilmott and David Mackie, not far behind them were Vicky Henderson (I’m counting her as CRC already) and Laura Midwinter who were 3rd and 4th lady overall.

At the Salisbury half marathon, Dave Townsend achieved a 2.5 minute PB of 1:37:26. Mark Cortaville didn’t quite achieve a PB but he was very close and still achieved an excellent time.

In other half marathon news we had 4 ladies running at the Forest of Dean half marathon, including Jane Tunicliffe doing her first half for over 4 years. All 4 of our ladies were within 11 minutes of each other too.

After a long injury lay off it was good to see Stewart Unsworth return to racing at the Brinkworth Bash 10K. He was taking it easy as a return race but he still came in around 56 minutes. Good to have the Bolton Bullet back.

It was a family affairs in Pembrokeshire where Richard Biggs ran the Dale 10k with his daughter. No taking it easy for the chairman though as he finished 10 minutes before her. Well done Dad.

Weekly Review – Week Ending 22nd September.

I’m going to do things a little differently this week.

Sometimes while writing these reports and updating the results I notice some patterns, and as I was putting the ‘Yes’ in the PB column for the Swindon Half Marathon I couldn’t help noticing that 2 of them often get a ‘Yes’ in the PB column so I started to get curious and took a look at their improvement and well honestly, it’s worth highlighting. The two in question are Lois Norcott and Katharine Burrett and their journey has been phenomenal.

I won’t start right at the beginning but we’ll go back 17 months to February 2018 and the Wiltshire 10. For both of them it was a first run in double figure mileage and both just beat 2 hours, Lois in 1:55:34 and Katharine just behind in 1:56:02. Two months later saw their first Half Marathon at Bournemouth Bay, Lois clocking 2:27:09 and Katharine 2:31:05. That month also saw them both do the Corsham 10K in 1:07:38 and 1:08:22. By the time 2018 was finished they had both gone under an hour for 10K, Katharine achieved it first at the Castle Combe Chilly (58:13) in November and Lois a couple of weeks later at the Bromham Pudding Run (59:56). They’ve both gone even faster again at the Calne Clock Change Challenge in March of this year, Katharine going sub-55 for a PB of 54:22 and Lois currently has a PB of 56:59.

Heading back to where we started at the Wiltshire 10. Both of them were over 20 minutes quicker in 2019 than they had been in 2018. Lois (1:35:16) and Katharine (1:36:01). They both went even quicker at the Good Friday 10 miles in Chippenham 2 months later, Lois (1:33:59), Katharine (1:35:44).

In between the two 10 mile races, they completed another half marathon, this time in Bath. And similar to the Wiltshire 10 differences, in a year Lois had reduced her half marathon time by nearly 23 minutes to 2:04:24 and Katharine had taken 25 minutes off to finish in 2:05:55. They have now done 2 half marathons in September, setting a PB at both. Lois went under 2 hours for the first time at Chippenham (1:58:39) before taking a bit more off at Swindon this weekend (1:55:34) and Katharine just missed out on a sub-2 at Chippenham (2:02:16), but achieved it with a 1:58:43 at Swindon. For those paying attention, Lois’ time is exactly the same as her Wiltshire 10 from 17 months ago and Katharine is only 3 minutes behind so they can now do an extra 5k in the same time.

At the beginner’s graduation at Chippenham in July, Oscar Zalek was aiming for a sub-30 minute 5k for the first time and I told him to keep the yellow tops of Lois and Katharine in sight as they’d be good pacers. They ended up as the bread on an Oscar sandwich and as expected, all 3 achieved a sub-30. As well as these improvements in speed, it’s been great to see both Katharine and Lois getting more confident with running, they’ve both been present at a lot of club championship events, they both did a leg as part of our Avon Valley Relay teams and in almost all race photos, they have a smile on their face. So next time you see either of them at club or a race give them a pat on the back or a round of applause, they definitely deserve it.

And now we return to our regularly scheduled weekly review and I guess I should start with some of the others who raced at the Swindon Half Marathon as there were another 5, there was a PB for Lauren Edwards by 4 minutes as she came 19th lady out of 728, apologies that it hasn’t got the fanfare it deserves. Andrew Wood possibly had a PB too and Charlie Berry definitely did as it was his first Half Marathon.

If Andrew didn’t get a PB at Swindon it’s almost certainly because he did the Black Mountains Fell Race the day before with David Mackie. 17ish miles, 5,000 feet of climb is going to leave your legs a bit wobbly for the day afterwards. I’m unsure if they ran together but they finished 80 seconds apart at just under 4 hours.

This weekend also saw the Cotswold Way Century, 102 miles of hills from Chipping Campden to Bath. After 3 of us had a DNF last year, Dan Harman became the 4th consecutive one, when he retired at the 70 mile Wotton checkpoint. He was ready to go but after running and walking on one leg for about 35 miles, the medics made it known that he really should stop there. A valiant effort and it was great for him to visit Tammy and Carl Zalek at the Tormarton checkpoint and still get a bacon roll.

Pride was restored for CRC by Mike Lang shortly after Dan’s retirement when he finished in a fantastic time of 21:40:46. He was aiming to go under 23 hours to beat the course record for a vet 50 and achieved it easily, making it the second course record held by a CRC runner at the Cotswold Way Century along with the overall course record…

…for a surname beginning with Z!

Current score: Corsham Running Club 6 Cotswold Way Century 4

And finally, with the nights rapidly drawing in and as we all get the headtorches and hi-viz out from the back of the drawer, it does mean that we’re back to the full moon runs and last week we started with a new route from the Northey Arms. It started off with some natural light but it very much finished in darkness with woods along the way. So make sure your headtorch has new batteries or is fully charged and join us next month for a group run under the full moon.

Weekly Review – Week Ending 15th September.

Elton John once sang that Saturday Night’s alright for Fighting, but if you ask our runners then Saturday afternoon is a great time for a 10K race. We had 14 members taking part in the Westonbirt Arboretum 100th anniversary run. Leading the way was Dave Townsend who got a PB with a first ever time under 45 minutes. Also gaining a PB was Danny Parker, who’s not too far from the 45 minute barrier himself. Kathryn Roynon’s children took part in the fun run, with one winning his age category and the other being 2nd.

Mark Cortaville was at the Bristol Half Marathon this weekend and while it gets derided as a dull route (out and back along the Portway), it’s definitely a flat course as Mark got a PB. And unlike Mark’s normal races, I’ve got a photo to attach here as one of his friends took a photo of him.

We had 6 runners doing varying distances at the Purbeck Running Festival in Swanage. We had 1 person doing the 10K, 2 people doing the marathon and 3 people doing the 16 miles. The 16 miles was one of those charming ones where the prescribed distance did not quite match the actual distance, being much closer to 17 miles. Looking at the times, it doesn’t appear to be a PB course at any distance but the weather was fantastic for a run around the seaside and the mayor was an ex-resident of Corsham so some great photo opportunities.

Weekly Review – Week Ending 1st September

Another busy week and yet more of our runners are pushing themselves to greater heights.

Sadly, the summer evenings are drawing in which means that it was the last Lacock Relay of the year and that means it was the handicap. If you’ve posted a time in the 3 previous events during the summer then you can do the handicap, starting off in reverse order with the idea that almost everyone will finish very close to each other (there were only 5 minutes between first and last) and the winner will be the person who has improved the most over the summer. David Mackie posted a quicker time than Jon Morrell on the night but Jon finished 4th and Dave finished 44th as Jon started earlier and Dave couldn’t catch him. They both finished higher than their starting position.

This weekend saw the final chance for people to either post a parkrun time or improve their parkrun time and 12 people took the chance to do so. We had 2 at Kingsway (Gloucestershire) including Michael Luff doing his 100th parkrun, 3 at Southwick, 4 at Chippenham, 1 at Delamere (Cheshire), 1 at Pomphrey Hill (Bristol) and Brain Atkins went all out to try and set a good time by picking the best parkrun he could find locally at Severn Bridge. It starts in Wales and goes across the bridge, crossing the border into England before turning round and heading back to Wales. I assume it is flat, it is wide for overtaking and it is concrete so easier for speed. It worked as he did set his fastest time.

Craig Rumble came 2nd in the Conquest of Avalon, just 2 minutes behind the winner. A 30 mile route from Ham Hill Country Park near Yeovil following the Leland Trail and the Land’s End Trail to Glastonbury and as an added bonus with 2 miles to go, the race does take in the climb to Glastonbury Tor and back down again. I’m sure it was worth the climb and battling the tourists for the views from the top.

We had 4 runners at the Flying Monk Malmesbury 10K. Some excellent performances and none more so than Charlie Berry. Who smashed his previous PB of 1:03 by finishing in just under 55 minutes.

One of the runners at Malmesbury, Jo Motto, wasn’t finished for the weekend and along with Gill Parham-Mott and Edd Stone did the Beat the Bore race on Sunday morning. This is a pretty unique event as it is a race against nature. The Bore is a natural phenomenon of a tidal surge along the river severn, although unlike the tide, it has an element of unpredictability as to exactly when it will arrive. Apparently, the noise of the approaching bore is quite an event itself. The race is roughly 8 miles and if you finish before the bore arrives, your medal has a green ribbon and if the bore beats you it is a white ribbon.

Andrew Wood spent another weekend playing on some mountains as he did the Peak District 33. His aim was to finish in under 8 hours and despite running closer to 36 miles (he claims it was the course and not his navigation) he finished in 7:52. He’s getting quite good at this mountain stuff.

Annika Davidson and Lucy Bright had quite an adventure doing the Cotswold Trail Half Marathon. Annika found her legs from last weeks ultra when she came across the big blinking (That’s what I’m assuming b***ard means) hills at miles 7 and 11. Along with some waiting at stiles and losing a shoe in a bog, it definitely isn’t a PB course but a beautiful outing and a great run from both of our Corsham ladies.

And away from races we had our penultimate away run of the summer and it was a new one (I think) at Bremhill, near Calne. Thanks to Stewart Unsworth for organising the route, keeping us on top of the hill so we could enjoy the views without being too out of breath. The route also took in a handy place to grab a group photo. Our final away run of the summer is this Thursday (5th September) from the Quarryman’s Arms at the slightly earlier time of 18:45 so please join us there and for a drink afterwards, there’s a reason most of our away runs finish at a pub you know.