Saturday July 29th
Railway Ultra 9 Mile
Thursday July 27th
Combe II Mota-vation
|Tegs Jones||24.17||81.36||2nd VM40|
|Max Cunningham||25.16||72.13||3rd U19M|
|Isabel Stubbs||26.30||76.54||2nd SL|
|Graham Le Good||33.17||73.24||3rd VM70|
|Michele Hustler||33.22||74.09||2nd VL55|
|Judith Le Good||42.01||68.87|
Thursday July 20th
|Isabel Stubbs||21.46||-24||PB, Course Record|
Wednesday July 19th
South West PB Series
|Tony Lock||20.25||2nd VM50|
|Rachel Stanley-Evans||22.43||2nd VF40|
|Sarah Fry||22.43||1st VF50|
|Will Spacklen||22.57||3rd VM50|
|Martin Bate||23.29||3rd VM60|
|Ita Moore||26.29||3rd VF60|
Sunday July 16th
Compton Verney Half Marathon
|Graham Ferris||1.31.48||2nd MV55|
Sunday July 9th
Race to the Stones 50K
|Andy Green||4.39.33||1st Male|
Sunday July 8th
Race to the Stones 100K
|Debbie Marshall Thomas||19.22.33|
The journey started in December 22 when I was on holiday and decided, as I’d done day 1 (50K) last year, maybe I should have ago at the full 100k. Fast forward a month and I started thinking how I could make this a more meaningful challenge, so I decided to raise money for Charity alongside. Our neighbours lost their daughter Emma last January and so I decided I wanted to do something to remember her, so I chose Young Minds, who had helped Emma and also her parents following her passing. I got my Young Minds T-Shirt and had it emblazoned with “Remembering Emma” on the front and “Running 100k 4 Emma” on the back and then got myself a proper training plan, which I fairly rigidly stuck to (hence my absence from club nights this year).
Having had so much rain, I used the time walking to text my wife to get my mate to bring a new set of shoes out to me at Bury Lane (the 42.5k point) where I was also unexpectedly met by Emma’s parents cheering me on, this was all really quite overwhelming and just so heartening. I then also met up with my friend who provided me with the change of shoes, I dried my feet off, taped up my toes, on with a pair of new socks and different trail shoes and then I was off again – no blisters at this stage.
50k (and Basecamp) then came along and this was not a good stage of the race for me at all, I was struggling and I was starting to hurt (I can see that now in the photos the kids took of me) and even thinking about another 50k at this point was starting to upset and frustrate me, I kept it in though, popped into the marquee and got a change of T-Shirt, a quick plate of pasta (eaten whilst walking around to stop my legs seizing) 2 paracetamol and another salt tablet later and then I was on my way. I ran to the point where the kids couldn’t see me any longer (I didn’t want to walk in front of them) and then there was a little incline (in my mind – an excuse to power walk). At this stage I met up with a different runner (a fellow accountant called Justin from Cambridge) we got chatting and by the time we’d cleared the incline, I was running again and to be honest, I don’t know what happened, but I felt really strong again.
Then at 65k just past the White Horse Hill, a friend from Bampton joined us for about 5k, we were trotting along really well and steadily at this stage (though Strava said it wasn’t particularly quick).. then a few hills later, whilst running down hill towards the 72k aid station, who should I see, but fellow WRR Alex Harris, he’d mustered up a load of the other spectators and got them to cheer me on and shout my name, this was just so amazing and not expected (thanks Alex). I then met him at the aid station and he helped tape my toes (the things mates do for each other..) Alex also spotted that I was quite dehydrated and so ensured that I had a load of water and some flat coke, as it was another 10 miles to the next Pit Stop.
Out of the Pit Stop and then up that next big hill was just pure cruelty, it wasn’t even a ‘walker’ I’d describe it as more a ‘climber’ of a hill, still, we pushed on, then using a mixture of walking, running (which probably looked more like shuffling at this point) we arrived at the final Pitstop at 88k where, once again, the marshals were just exceptional, as was the array of sugary treats, electrolytes, flapjacks and fruit. The marshals were filling bottles for you, getting food, offering words of encouragement “Just one more small hill and then it’s downhill all the way”. So, out of the Pit Stop and on we went, meeting my wife and kids again at 90k during a rain storm of biblical proportions, the section between 92k and 95k can only be described as a slippery motorcross style section, not for the faint hearted (I wouldn’t have fancied that in the dark and the sun was quickly going down at this stage). Justin then started working out what the finish time might be, this alone took away any annoyance of that nasty section we’d just done, it was looking like I might even beak 14 hours.. and this just spurred me on more.. on we ran, down into Avebury, round the traffic cone (I know, it should be called race to the Traffic Cone, not Race to the Stones) double back for a kilometre and then down to the finish line and all this in a chip time of 13 hours 49 minutes and 16 seconds – I have never felt so elated after a race as I did on Saturday night.
I am still, whilst I write this, on a massive high, though they are not the words my legs would be using at the moment.. and to top it all off, following a flurry of donations on the day, I ended up having raised just over £2,000 for Young minds (doubling my initial target) the perfect end to a perfect day.
Wednesday July 5th
RAF Inter Unit 5k Road Relay