The Giants Head Marathon

On Saturday 22nd of June Danny Painter took on the very challenging hilly but scenic Giants Head Marathon in Dorset organised by White Star Running. The route took Danny through the beautiful Sydling and Cerne valleys, along foot paths and through fields, around and under the famous Cerne Giant. With over 3200ft of elevation gain and is a slightly longer than standard length marathon, but it gives stunning views worth stopping for. Danny came 44th with a time of 04h46m48s.

The Woodland Relays

Woodland Relays 2019.

Sidmouth Running Club entered twelve teams into the Woodlands Relay which took place in the woodlands near Lea Croft Caravan Park, Colyton, on the evening of Wednesday the 19th of June. Organisers, Axe Valley Runners had to make a last minute decision, to have a shorter than planned route. Due to some fallen trees the planned circuit could not be used. This shortened the distance for each runner and instead turned it into an out-and-back race. The first 600m was almost flat with the next 600m(ish) section, being a downhill blast with a slippery u-turn at the bottom. This was the half-way point which meant that it was a very long climb back up to the top, and then a sprint to the finish. To avoid collisions, the runners had to run on the left hand side at all times. This worked very well with no reported incidents. The weather had been wet all week on and off, the ground was fairly good for most of the route, but slippery on the hill.
There was a great atmosphere on the start line and a huge cheer as the first runners headed off. It wasn’t long before they were back for the hand over with more high spirited cheering and clapping every time no matter who’s team was setting off.
Run Boy Three were the first Sidmouth team to finish with Steve Saunders setting off first and averaging a 10 minute mile followed by Rob Edwards and a very determined Tim Mitchell giving Team RBT a time of 29m10s. Chafing The Dream saw Chris Day Kerry gain a down hill 400m(ish) section personal best time of 1m39s and was followed by Charlotte Forrer and a flat out Sam Ingram. Team CTD officially finished with a 29m10s timing. First to get away for mixed gender team Grand Master Flash, was Simon Holyer who managed a fast 8:15min/mile pace followed by Richard King and Ronnie Masters to gain Team GMB a 13th place in a time of 29m43s. Catherine Hilton got The Runners Beans off to a flying start, with Claire `Ashby giving it all she could, especially up the long hill and then Kerry Boyle blitzed the last leg. Team TRB had fun but found it tough. However, they were the first all female MG team to be completely finished and achieved it in 29m53s coming 14th. The young at heart Young Sexagenarians were down to two men for this event, with Paul Mitchell and John Hanson who took on two of the laps. Tim Clay had to duck out with an injury. Team YS came 18th in 30m51s. Originally named by Paula Farrand, the Dream Team will have ‘er’ added to Dream for next years Woodlands Relay. First away for Team DT was Rocker Sheppard, who set the bar with an average 11min/mile pace for the team. Hamish Spence took off to chase down Team TTT’s Karen Farnham and very nearly succeeded on the downhill section, but Karen is an up-hill running demon and so it was over to Adrian Horne to take the baton. A time of 32m19s and a 22rd place (1 ahead of Team TTT) was achieved. Terry’s Talkative Trio comprised of Christine & Karen Farnham and Sarah Clapham and they all claim not to have uttered a single word during the race! Is that really possible? Of course it isn’t and the clock stopped when all three took a breath at 33m09s giving them 23rd place. All you need to know about the Sidmouth Green Goddesses is that they were absolutely fabulous…any questions…good 🙂 Introducing Team Ladies And Tramp and clearing things up for arguments sake, Sarah Watkins (Lady and first runner), Paul Williamson (Tramp and second runner) and Kerry Agar (Lady and fast runner). Team LAT came 27th in 36m21s. Going to quickly to be correctly named the Slow Motion Ninjas were, in order of disappearance and re-appearance, Julia Haddrell, Jenny Bentley and Suzi Rockey. They managed a combined time of 37m23s and came in 29th place. Named after three great women of a certain age, The Supremes, were Sarah Powell, Emma Grainger and Ann Cole. They all showed supreme grit and determination throughout the event to get to the finish. They came in 31st position, but by the smile on their faces, they certainly enjoyed themselves! Their time taken… not important, but they thank all the other Sidmouth runners for their fabulous support both on and off the trail.
An event thoroughly enjoyed by all with very high levels of SRC members supporting each other on the track and at the start/finish line.

The Exmoor Maverick Marathon

Kirsteen Welch Takes On The Beast.
   The Maverick Inov-8 Exmoor X-Series is labeled as The Beast and is the toughest event in the Maverick Events calendar. It was given this name due to the massive 1800m (6000ft) elevation gain over the whole route. There were three distances on offer, a 15k, 21k and the full 42k in-which Kirsteen took part. All three races started at the same time with Kirsteen opting for her usual speedy get away, with the intention of up keeping the pace with Lucy MacAlister. However, Kirsteen didn’t realise that Lucy was doing the 21k route, so at the split in the course, Kirsteen carried on alone, along the coastal path. When she reached the next aid station, the marshal told her that she was the second runner and first lady at this point. Kirsteen remained in this position for the rest of the race, although she did have the Maverick Trail Division Elite Athlete, Julia Davis hot on her heals towards the end. Kirsteen kept ahead of Julia and managed to do a sprint to the finish line beating Julia by just 11 seconds. SRC Mighty Green Kirsteen Welch came in on 04h14m52s, taking the 2nd place over all and retained the position of first lady.    
   Back during the Women Can Marathon in May, Kirsteen found herself ‘hitting the wall’ at around mile 20. So, for the first time she decided to trial the use of energy gels during this event. She got around with no ‘wall hitting’ and has found the gels useful. Recently she also had a consultation with sports dietitian Renee McGregor and is hoping this will help to fuel her training and racing more efficiently. There is a very fine line between training, nutrition and recovery and  Kirsteen has learnt a lot over the course of this year, but wants to learn more so that she doesn’t end up injured or fatigued. 
This was the last race for Kirsteen before her next event in the Snowdon Marathon which takes place in mid July.

Exmouth Park run

It was almost wall to wall personal bests for the SRC members doing the group Parkrun in a blustery Exmouth.  Sarah Clapham did her 15th and grabbed a PB in 25m27s.  A PB for Christine Farnham who sped her way around in 25m49s, whilst sister Karen Farnham was more leisurely in her approach with a 26m07s time. Juliet Powell also gained a PB in 29m52s along along with a PB for Christie Ward who raced around in 29m57s. John Sharples is the Man Of The Match and becomes a Centurion Park Runner having completed his 100th Parkrun in 29m58s. Julia Haddrell and her K9 did it in 30m44s and has now completed her 70th Parkrun. Lesley Miszewska finished in 33m41s and Sarah Powell in at 36m45s. First timer Donna Welsh ran with David Welsh in 37m22s who cheerfully swept up the MG group. Suzi Rocky took 27m.22 to complete Seaton’s pebble track.

The First Sidmouth Running Club Juniors Group Gets Underway.

The first session for the Juniors got started on Sunday the 9th of June on the playing fields of the Sidmouth College.
Leaders of the Juniors, Kerry Boyle and Claire Ashby, will being showing the FUNdementals of athletics to the group of 23 youngster during the course. With mixed abilities and ages ranging from 8 to 12 years, the group has 11 girls and 12 boys.
During the warm up, the group looked into good running technique, included standing tall, arms driving and lifting the knees. The groups were then split into the 10-12 year olds with Claire and the 8-10 year olds with Kerry.
Kerry took her group to do some physical preparation which included learning how to do squats and balancing. With balancing the younger group played the Dice Game and Mirroring a partner. After the warm up they then moved into the main session which comprised of a running, throwing and jumping unit. With running they were learning how to run over obstacles, with the younger group establishing which leg they preferred to lead and also getting a feel of a good stride pattern between each hurdle whilst still retaining that tall posture. Next they moved on to the pull throw, which is the technique used in throwing the javelin, but we started with an overhead throw of a football, then bean bags and finally onto howlers. The last part (a group favourite), was jumping for distance in the sand pit. Initially they practiced doing a 2 legged standing jump, learning to use the arms to swing up, moving on to the one legged jump deciding on which was their stronger jumping leg and driving the other knee up, and finally jumping in the sand pit to see how far they could jump.
Claire’s group of 10 -12 year olds were a determined bunch and all worked very hard on the skills being focused on. They learned about finding which side of the body is more dominant and which foot is the easiest to balance on. This illustrated how balance and coordination are two of the essential skills for good running. They then practised hurdling, throwing and jumping.
Everyone had a great time and had a go at the activities and gave some great feed back. The children received an activity card, which they will hopefully all complete over the next 5 weeks.

Running In Memory Of A Life-Long Friend.

John Sharples ran in his 99th Parkrun at Seaton on Saturday the 8th of June. Instead of wearing the SRC Mighty Green tee-shirt, he put on his Middleton vest and ran in memory of his life-long friend and running partner, Fred Doyle. John and Fred were best friends from the age of, 4 were born 1 day apart and ran together in many races until Fred became ill and passed away.

Kirsteen Takes Another First at Oke Croak Fell Race

Kirsteen Welch took on the Oke Croak Fell Race on Saturday the 8th of June. This race takes the competitors over and through open moorland with no foot paths to guide the runners, it was boggy and difficult underfoot with a lot of climbing/clambering over boulders to reach the top of the Tor’s. It is also a self navigating race with around 2000ft of ascent climbing including Oke Tor, East Mill Tor and Yes Tor with a fast downhill run for the finish. Kirsteen thoroughly enjoyed competing in this event, although navigation would have been an issue had she not managed to keep pace with two other lads. Having done the race on previous occasions they knew the way and with Kirsteen’s speed the three of them powered their way over the moorlands to the finish line. Kirsteen’s time was 1h28m36s, she was the 1st lady over the line and 6th over all.