Weekly Review – Week Ending 1st December

It seems the sensible thing to do this week is to start with the Bromham Pudding Run. We had 13 runners doing the flat two lap course and it definitely wasn’t unlucky as Vicky Henderson (42:11), Laura Midwinter (42:37)and Marie Vinolo-Young (44:00) all finished in the top ten ladies, all set a 10K PB and together they won the trophy for fastest ladies team. Vicky was also the first vet finisher.There was also a PB for Graham Byrne (57:35), another sub 1 hour result from Wendy Byrne (59:52) and a season’s best run form Stuart Henderson leading Corsham home in 36:41, his fastest time at Bromham since 2014, obviously the effect of returning to CRC.At the Full Monty Cute 10M around Ham Hill outside Yeovil, Debra Kearsey went 9 minutes faster than she had done previously and Stewart Unsworth was not quite as quick as he decided to take part in Steve Hible’s running injury competition, by falling over and cutting his knee. I feel that Steve’s ankle still wins though and we should discourage any more people from entering this competiton. With 1,500 ft of climbing this race had the third most elevation of any race this week.In second place was the Cardington Cracker doubling the elevation of the Monty Cute packing in around 3,000 ft in its 10 miles and of course it was Andrew Wood who was running it as he doesn’t like anything that isn’t lumpy!But the winner for most elevation goes to *checks notes* ME, Carl Zalek! doubling Andrew’s elevation doing 6,000 ft of climb at the inaugural Copthorne 50K. The route is a lap just over 10 miles done 3 times over the Surrey Hills, including the infamous Box Hill. An unexpected number of the climbs were on uneven steps, it was a brutal course. There were also options for 50 miles and 100 miles, 5 or 10 loops, those brave souls will be sleeping downstairs for weeks. The weather was a little chilly to start but it was bright and clear and the views were simply stunning affording some excellent photo opportunities. This race was organised by experienced ultra runners so while it was a first time event they knew what they were doing and it comes highly recommended (if you’re a little unhinged). The mandatory kit list is quite minimal and there is only one thing that they say you have to carry on every single lap – a canary!Inspiration comes in many forms, but I’m sure that anyone who went to club last week can’t fail to have been inspired by Eric Ayling, the 84 year old who was in the Springfield centre cycling 10 hours a day for a week on a spin bike to raise money for Help For Heroes. Massive Kudos to Eric.

Weekly Review – Week Ending 24th November

We’re back to a regular review this week, just members racing for fun.

Vicky Henderson did the long course (5.75m) of a Richmond Park Cross Country and while the organisers sadly failed to recognise it, we’re not shy about announcing her as the second lady and first vet. Fantastic Vicky and congratulations.

Andrew Wood and David Mackie took on some gnarly terrain at the Kong Mini Mountain Marathon in the Peak District. 15 miles of hills, mud and map reading. They ran as a pair and they’re still speaking to each other so that counts as a win.

We had 7 members at the Castle Combe Chilly 10k. 3.5 laps of the circuit, so good for a PB but not so good if it’s cold and wet. Luckily, it was a mild day for November and some good results from our members. Jo Crossman and Samantha Grimes both got a PB as it was their first 10K. Tammy Zalek was running her first 10K since 2016 and wasn’t far away from her PB, and did the first 5K faster than her River Run PB. Jake Gregory wasn’t far from his PB either despite running with an injury and Wendy Byrne kept herself ahead of the 60 pacer which in her own words – Not achieved that in a long time. Well done to all of our runners.

The Avebury 8 (nine) attracted 6 of our runners who enjoy getting muddy. Some great results from our members, especially Craig Rumble who finished 4th overall and got the trophy for first vet, there are advantages to turning 40 it seems. Debra Kearsey also brought home a trophy for first vet 50. Stephen Hible loves this race as you get a great hand made mug and this year was his 7th attendance so he’s got more than his mug tree can handle. Unfortunately he also picked up something else (picture below) which hopefully he recovers from quickly.

Luckily Stephen’s son John had a bit more success running without injury at the Oxford University Santa Dash 5K. A full 5K in santa costume. If this sounds like something you’d enjoy then there are always lots around in the lead up to Christmas including one in Neston.

Weekly Review – Week Ending 17th November

The main news this week is of course our 20th anniversary celebrations but we’ll start with our racers before we have a detailed breakdown of Saturday’s events.

First up we’ll start with the Keynsham Dandy, a 12ish mile trail run which David and Susan Mackie and Debra Kearsey all did. It was a great performance by David winning the vet50 category. Pictured here with David Warren who came 3rd overall and 1st vet40 (running for AVR, but we can forgive him for that)

At the Sutton Benger flyer, Christina Charleston set a new 5 mile PB (as it was her first), being paced around by Nick Maryon. Mark Cortaville finished in just over 32 minutes just missing out on a PB himself.

Darren Thorley did the Gosport half marathon in a very respectable 1:35.

Richard Biggs was also doing a half marathon, although his was a hilly, muddy off road adventure from Broadway at the north end of the Cotswold Way. Not quite a PB at 2:46 but it really is a tough one.

This week also saw our latest full moon run, this time from Heddington, It had a big climb up to the Roundway, a trip round some woods (luckily, no actual trips) and then a lovely downhill finish. And the brave ones ran for a bit solely by the light of the full moon which gave us a dazzling display.

And now for the main event, our 20th anniversary celebration.

The plan was to run a 20 mile run (actually around 22.6) around 6 war memorials in Corsham and the surrounding villages, so people could drop in and out as they wanted.

The day started at 10:30am as a group of nearly 30 of us (and one dog) met for the first leg to Lacock, some planning to do the entire route, some looking to do less than that.

As we were running around the war memorials, Dave Mackie read us a war poem and we had a quiet moment of reflection at each of them. It was a nice moment and very grateful to Dave for picking poems written by soldiers during the First World War or the Boer War.

The first 4 miles to Lacock were extremely muddy, really setting the tone for the day. Steve Parham made friends with a bull, but everyone made it safely to Lacock, where some joined us and some left us.

The next section took us to Atworth, and consisted largely of minor country roads, allowing those of the faster persuasion to go a little faster, although in true Corsham style, we did SCOOP! The highlight (or lowlight) of this section was the bridleway/stream, many of us enjoyed splashing through this section.

Numbers were starting to dwindle as we left for Box and people with other things to do headed home. But around 15 of us ran the next section and were treated to a family of 4 deer running across the fields, just past Stonar school. Then there was the house with peacocks just a bit further along and some runnable trails to take us to Box and lunch.

A couple more changes of personnel after lunch and the trip to Colerne. This was the only properly hilly section of the day and as we were slightly later leaving Box than planned, we took a more direct route.

Colerne definitely won the prize for best remembrance display with knitted poppies all over.

The group heading to Biddestone grew slightly as we picked up some extra members doing the final two legs. It was a very up and down journey, taking in some of the Slaughterford 9 route in reverse (mostly a downhill thankfully).

We were expecting to be joined by a handful of people at Biddestone but the sight that greeted us just blew us away.

So an absolutely huge group of us set off in small groups to head back to the football club in Corsham for 3.5 miles of roads ready to be joined by the children and parents from One Mile Club.

So finally there was a single mile group run around Corsham court with the One Mile Club. Under the dying light and with headtorches on it was a great way to end the day. The children were presented with a special medal, certificate, a drink and cake.

Dave Mackie said he counted 54 different people who ran at least one leg. I think there were similar numbers from the One Mile Club (+ parents).

There were 7 people who ran the whole 22.6 miles (all but one also did the OMC bit) and got one of the medals too. They were Mike Fisher, Chris Hunt, Ade Hurren, Nick Maryon, Carl Zalek and extra special mention should go to Luke Davies, who’d only ever run 18 miles previously and Katharine Burrett, whose longest previous run had been 14 miles, AND she was still able to dance in heels that evening!

A big thanks must go to Dave Mackie for organising the route, the weather and the special touch of the poetry reading, also to Susan Mackie for sharing driving of the support vehicle with Dave so we didn’t have to carry bags and had transport.

After the run, we like to let our hair down and the evening afforded us that opportunity with the party. There was prosecco on arrival (we are Corsham Running Club after all), a hog roast and great puddings, a disco, black and gold decorations and some words from an absent Richard Biggs read by David Mackie doing his best impression of Richard, although without the Dorset accent.

Again huge thanks are in order, this time to Laura Midwinter who organised the evening almost single handedly and even took a week off winning any trophies to do it.

And finally thanks to all of you for joining us to celebrate 20 years of CRC. Looking forward to our 30th anniversary already.

Weekly Review – Week Ending 3rd November

It’s wet and it’s windy which means it’s definitely November and that means that it’s our latest club championship event – Over the Hills, run by our friends from AVR. We had 15 members running and conditions were so treacherous that the race went over the bridge rather than through the river at the bottom of Iford manor. I’m sure everyone was gutted by that decision. One of our members did manage to pick up a prize and I’m sure it won’t come as a surprise to anyone that it was Laura Midwinter taking home the V45. Congratulations again.

Mark Cortaville ran the Marlow Half Marathon where it has a local reputation as a really tough one and anything under 1:45 is seen as an excellent which Mark managed that with about 7 minutes to spare.

And the only other racer this weekend was Chris Hunt at the Gloucester 24 hour track race. Yes, that is as bad as it sounds, 24 hours around a 400 metre track and in Gloucester! The track has history though as in 1982, it was the home of the 24 hour world record and what is still the current British record of 170.974 miles (274.48 km). Chris wasn’t aiming for a record though, his plan was to get to 100 miles, something he’s tried previously but not quite achieved. 100 miles would be 402.25 laps and Chris’ tactic was to just keep moving and never to sit down. After 23 hours and 6 minutes, Chris decided not to go any further having managed 405 laps! An extra 2.75 laps just to make sure and an official distance of 100.66 miles/162km. Huge congratulations to you Chris.

Weekly Review – Week Ending 27th October

Unlike me our runners never rest.

The latest club championship event took place in Calne with the clock change challenge 10K. 15 runners from CRC took part and at least 8 of them got a PB.

Dave Townsend by over 90 seconds, Richard Moore, James Shaw, Lois Norcott and Chris Cooke. John Wilmott went under 40 minutes for the first time, although isn’t in the photo again. Laura Midwinter got a PB while winning the V45 category (where Vicky Henderson was second). Jake Gregory was aiming for 55 minutes and was nearly 2 minutes quicker than that. And while Chris Hunt didn’t get a PB he did his first race under 7 minute mile pace for many a year.

5 of our members had also raced the spring version of this event, with Lois Norcott (4:09), Chris Hunt (1:24) and James Shaw (2:24) all being quicker with Pete Allen and John Voyez marginally slower by only 5 and 1 second each.

If I was to say 10 miles and 1,500 feet of climbing at the Stickler, you’d immediately think of the Mackies and probably Debra Kearsey and if I was to say it was in Dorset too then you’d probably add Richard Biggs in too and you’d be perfectly correct as the 4 of them did the Dorset Stickler.

They may have moved on from Corsham but the Luffs are still members and did their local half marathon at Stroud. And in Max’s words – No finishing times that either of us are particularly proud of but…Michael & I got out, started & finished the Stroud HM today. Sometimes you just have to be grateful to be able to take part!

In another game of guess who, the clues are Exmoor Half Marathon, was actually around 14 miles, lots of big hills again and it included a mandatory kit. I’m sure you’ve correctly guessed that it was Andrew Wood who took part in it. Well done to him and also to you if you guessed correctly.

Marie Vinolo-Young ran with her JMS crew friends but I think we can forgive that as she gets them to run our races. This time she was doing the DB Max Mud Nation, 5kms of mud and obstacles in just over an hour.

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.