Ruth Johnson & Kim Nichols took part in the North Downs Ridge 50K trail Ultra, organised by Freedom Racing. The race was centred around the North Downs Way & Surrey Wildlife Trust Reserve at Norbury Park. The race was billed as a perfect course for someone wanting to run their first Ultra. The trails were runnable with not too many hills, making it a fast consistent route. 3000 feet of elevation! Not many hills??
The race start was at Denbies wine estate. The runners travelled west along the well-known North Downs Way National Trail, to the outskirts of Guildford. This section of the course followed the ridgeline of hills overlooking the Surrey hills and the lovely countryside surrounding the villages of Wolton, Gomshall, & Shere. The runners passed the famous Newlands Corner & Albury Downs before passing the beautiful St Martha’s Church. Once Guildford was reached and refuelling had taken place at the checkpoint, the field made their way back towards Denbies. As Denbies approached the race left the main trail & headed north through the village of Westhumble, before taking a very scenic loop route through the Surrey Wildlife Trust Reserve woodlands of Norbury Park. The runners then made their way back towards the finish at Denbies.
The race was superbly organised. There were four well stocked checkpoints and the route was fully sign posted. A mandatory kit was required to be carried by each participant to cover all eventualities!
Ruth & Kim ran extremely well to finish well under the 10 hour cut off time. They both found the course very testing, with hard under foot conditions and tough hills to endure. This was also Kim’s first 50K race, which makes her performance even more remarkable!
Our ladies finished in 221st & 222nd positions, posting very respectable times. Ruth clocked a time of 06:44:46 & Kim just behind in 06:44:59. There were 267 finishers.
Firstandlastrunning staged their Plym Trail Spring Marathon & Half Marathons during the May Bank holiday weekend.The Teignbridge Trotters were out in force with Fourteen Club runners taking part.
The Plym Trail is situated within an AONB on Dartmoor National Park, surrounded by stunning forests and valleys. The trail follows the historic railway from Coypool in Plymouth to the small picturesque village of Clearbrook. The start took place at Clearbrook Village Hall. The runners set off with a short loop of the village, before heading down Cycle route 27 towards the outskirts of Plymouth, before climbing back towards the finish at the village hall. Marathoners had to complete this route twice!
There were some outstanding performances, none better than Kris Ward who clocked a superb marathon time of 03:04:07 to clinch 2nd place. On any other day this time would have won most races at this tough venue, but unfortunately he ran into Lee Muscott who blitzed the course in a fantastic time of 02:56:48.
Pride of place in the Sunday Half went to Jane Hutchinson who finished first female in a very good time of 01:46:11.
A special mention must go to Michael Mooney. He has rejoined the Trotters after a 5 year absence. Micky took part in his first marathon on the Saturday. He surprised himself by clocking an impressive time of 03:43:38 to finish in 5th place. Having completed this marathon, Mickey will be hoping to complete another three over the next three weekends! Mickey is running in memory of his sister, with all the proceeds from his just giving page going to The Little Princess Trust. Have a look at his face book page to pledge a donation for such a worthy cause.
Here are the other positions & times for the Trotters;
Saturday Half Marathon - Eleanor Taylor (9, 02:06:23), Gemma Radcliffe (20, 02:28:02). There were 24 finishers.
Saturday Marathon - James Saunders (2, 03:26:00), Paul Sharples (11, 04:29:35), Kirsty Bowman (12, 04:29:35), Sharon Sharples (13, 04:39:48). There were 25 finishers.
Sunday Half Marathon - James Kerr (3, 01:44:09), Stephanie Ross (18, 02:08:37), Eleanor Taylor with her second half of the weekend (20, 02:11:39). There were 31 finishers.
Sunday Marathon - Graydon Widdicombe (4, 03:36:59), Susanna Goffe (11, 03:46:10). There were 32 entrants.
A very successful weekend, many of who were using this race as part of their Dartmoor Discovery Ultra training preparation, which takes place on Saturday June 5th, starting and finishing at Princetown.