Race Reports, November 2009

Durham Tri Club Duathlon, High Shincliffe, 29th November

Run 2M, Bike 11M, Run 2M

Shaun Roberts

I've been meaning to dip my toe in the world of multi-sports events for ages, and these Durham Tri Club events have always seemed to be an easy and obvious way in to this sort of thing. So on Sunday I had a go - unfortunately, it was more of a leap in the deep end than any sort of toe-dipping! The weather was horrendous - a cold northerly wind, heavy rain showers and the odd hailstone - and driving into Durham from Wolsingham I was tempted to turn the car round and go back to bed.

Saw Allan, and the other organiser, Ian, at registration at High Shincliffe, and they gave us all the race instructions, transition rules, and the like. These don't amount to a great deal, I should add, in case you were thinking of doing one of these. You basically need to run the best part of two miles, in a couple of loops near Allan's house, then get on your bike and ride a well-defined 11-mile course - then do the run again! What could be simpler?

Well, nothing - but it could have been drier. Also warmer. I started quite fast, against Peter's advice to do the complete opposite and save a bit for later, and unsurprisingly it felt pretty much as normal at the beginning of a run - except that everyone in my handicap group was behind me for some reason. [ By some accident I started in the third such group, despite my passing on very, very pessimistic estimates of my likely times - I'd been supposed to start in the slowest group! ] I was beginning to wonder if Peter had been right, and perhaps running a two-mile segment at the pace of a two-mile race was unwise. Ho, and indeed hum.

Onto the bike ("Don't touch the bike before you get your helmet on!"), and onto the A177, then a couple of lefts before heading north towards Sherburn on the new road. All had been well until this point, but cycling into the driving wind and rain became very hard work. Also, unlike running, where I never get cold, assuming I'm at least half-sensibly dressed - I was having to work very hard just to try and keep warm. My feet, in particular, were very cold and wet, as I was just in running shoes. Conditions were much better, and I could go much faster, when we turned back on ourselves and headed south, but then we had an even longer stretch back north again, and I had to use my lowest gear to make any progress into the wind. I overtook precisely no one, and several well-equipped, long-legged types went whizzing past along this stretch.

West towards Durham again, and a very welcome fast section, before the hill up to High Shincliffe, which wasn't too bad at all. Now the bit triathletes always tell you about - the feeling you get starting running after being on the bike. I tried this out a couple of times before this event, and although it was indeed strange, I hadn't found it too much of a problem. This time, though, I felt like I was running on cold squidgy sponges - quite wierd! A couple of minutes later, though, they felt much better, and I could have a nice run round the last loop, passing a few others on the way this time.

I was a tad surprised to come in thirteenth - well pleased with that, so I'm looking forward to trying another one of these, ideally on a warmer and drier day. Peter and I headed over to join everyone in the pub after Nigel's Social Run at Beamish, and have a very welcome pint of warm Guinness.


Pos Name Run 1 T1 Bike T2 Run 2 Total
1 Ian HESLER 11:46 00:45 32:47 01:00 12:50 0:59:08
11 Geoff WATSON 12:30 00:58 42:40 01:00 13:00 1:10:08
12 Hilary ROSS 13:07 01:03 41:45 01:00 13:30 1:10:25
13 Shaun ROBERTS 12:28 01:18 43:14 00:40 13:12 1:10:52
21 Roz LAYTON 14:00 01:00 44:20 01:00 15:10 1:15:30
34 Peter BROOKS 15:08 01:47 47:20 01:33 16:49 1:22:37

36 finishers.
Grey times shown are estimated, due to missing transition details.

Harrier League, Farringdon, 28th November

Mudman & Mudwoman

Striders had a record turn out at today's Harrier League x/c race at Farringdon. No less than 16 women and 21 men ran for Elvet Striders on a perfect early winter's afternoon. They were led home by Susan and Phil Sanderson respectively. Thank you all for coming and we look forward to seeing even more of you at the next fixture.



1 Terry WALL Morpeth H S 0:29:20
3 Phillip SANDERSON S(V) 0:29:49
125 David GIBSON S(V) 0:36:17
126 Thomas REEVES S(V) 0:36:17
132 Michael BENNETT S(V) 0:36:23
134 Will HORSLEY F 0:36:25
192 Shaun ROBERTS S(V) 0:38:02
203 Geoff DAVIS S(V) 0:38:22
204 Keith WESSON S(V) 0:38:25
239 Conrad WHITE S(V) 0:39:31
241 John METSON S(V) 0:39:39
276 Nigel HEPPLE S(V) 0:41:05
281 Graham DAGLISH S(V) 0:41:18
291 Graham ARROWSMITH S(V) 0:41:55
310 Stewart GARDNER S(V) 0:43:03
318 Phil OWEN S(V) 0:43:49
322 Dougie NESBIT S(V) 0:44:02
333 Dave ROBSON S(V) 0:45:01
339 Andrew THOMPSON S 0:45:47
347 Alan SMITH S(V) 0:46:49
359 Alistair ROBSON S 0:50:54

362 finishers
Handicaps: F = 5:00, M = 2:30.

The lads
1 Alison DARGIE Elswick Harriers S 0:22:51
58 Susan DAVIS S(V) 0:28:24
62 Nina MASON S(V) 0:28:29
63 Fiona SHENTON F(V) 0:28:30
64 Anna PETHYBRIDGE S 0:28:37
65 Stephanie BARLOW S(V) 0:28:40
74 Zoe TOMLINS S 0:29:01
75 Jan YOUNG S(V) 0:29:05
88 Jean BRADLEY S(V) 0:29:55
98 Jane IVES S(V) 0:30:44
100 Angela PROCTOR S(V) 0:30:50
109 Kirsty DYKES S 0:31:50
110 Lindsay TARN S 0:32:03
116 Jennifer COPLEY S 0:33:08
117 Joanne PORTER S(V) 0:33:12
118 Clare Van Den BOS S(V) 0:33:19
122 Emma DETCHON S 0:35:13

124 finishers
Handicaps: F = 3:00.

The lasses

Newcastle Town Moor Marathon, 22nd November

Dave Robson

I wasn't really looking forward to this one as it was five laps of the Town Moor which is often windy in November. As I am not particularly marathon-fit at the moment and to try and counter the tedium of five laps I thought I would try a plan to keep my mind busy. The plan was to do about 4hr 30m with laps of 56min, 55min 54min, 53min and 52min.

I did 4hr 27min which for my current level of marathon fitness and the wind on the course was fine by me. However, I messed up the plan by going too fast in the first lap - 53.05. I tried to run pretty slow and I was pretty much at the back, but I didn't manage it. I basically abandoned my plan after that and just tried to keep it steady at that sort of pace. Lap 2 was 53min 44sec and I felt fine. I speeded up a little on lap 3 - 51min 47sec and 52min 25sec for lap 4. I wasn't overtaken by anybody (apart from being lapped by countless runners who were finishing in less than three and a half hours) and while I was running steady, lots of runners around me were slowing down and this confused some of the very supportive marshalls: 'Last lap well done' - I wish!

So all was fine until I got to 23.5m when suddenly I felt a bit sick, which has never happened before. I walked for about 20 yards, felt better and carried one until we came to the one hill which was into the wind. I hadn't had any difficulty running up it the four previous times, but this time I had to walk it. Two more short walking breaks and I got to the end of lap 5 in 56min 34sec which was better than I expected, but it wasn't the fastest lap finish I had planned.

Will I try again - no, I don't think 5 lap (or more) marathons are for me. The Town Moor is not scenic. The only advantage of 5 laps was going past Fetchpoint 5 times. This was a group of Fetchies, led by Clare, who cheered, made lots of noise and handed out jelly babies and drinks. They were just great, loud, welcoming and organised. There were also some very encouraging marshalls and spectators who looked like they were freezing out on the moor.

Phil Owen did a great time considering he did the Brampton to Carlisle race the day before. Anna Seeley who is often at the club on Wednesdays and who also did the Brampton race, was the second lady and was awarded a very impressive trophy - well done Anna !


Pos Name Club Cat Pos Time
1 Andy Sly Retford AC MV45 3:00:00
21 Catherine CharltonRedhill RR F 1 3:30:57
57 Phil Owen MV40 37 4:19:20
70 Dave Robson MV55 78 4:27:38

90 finishers.

Clay Bank West, 22nd November

4.2M 1020'

Dougie Nisbet

Ros and Dougie model his 'n' hers Ron Hill gloves. I've yet to be disappointed by any of the fell races on the surprisingly accessible North York Moors and this short and stylish number was no exception. I arrived at least 45 minutes early to find there was already a long queue for numbers. This popular short (4.2 miles) race is simple and elegant, heading up and west, then up a bit more, then back east along the Cleveland Way, then down. As we stood around the start for the customary briefing I examined the rather spectacular scratches on my calf, caused by tripping over a bramble on a dangerous descent while trying to find somewhere to go for a pee. Not exactly a life-endangering gripping bar-room anecdote but it'll have to do.

Dave Parry went straight from his pep talk without pause into "right is everyone read ok off you go then" catching a few of us by surprise and the race had begun. I'd reccie'd the initial climb during warm-up and knew that it went on a bit so I was happy to tuck in at the back and get settled. The first I knew that Susan was racing was when I caught her just before the turn. I had Ros from DFR in my sights and was pleased that I managed to stick so close to her until about half-way. We turned south then west up onto the Cleveland Way and a rather alarming squally wind that worried me a little as I'd opted for the no-base-layer option in my dress-code. But it was short lived and the scramble up to the Wain Stones surprised me in its scramblieness. Ros just ahead, and Susan just behind, and then over the top we hit the autobahn and things got rather fun.

There followed a scary section along the fast wet and slippy stones of the Cleveland Way before the final descent. I'd thought the navigation on this short race would be a no-brainer but suddenly wished I'd paid more attention to what Andy Minster had been saying as I suddenly noticed a local vest disappear sharp left of the path. I knew the old adage about following local vests but decided to stick on the stones rather than veer off into the unknown. Around the corner and it all became clear. There were seconds to be saved by picking a good descent, as much for the better surface offered by going off-road rather than sticking to the lethal flagstones.

The short final descent back down through the woods was fun and just about flat-out-runnable. The sprint finish is enhanced by a barrier across the forest road so a bit of veering is required to ensure an injury free end to the race. I felt like I had a good race even though I'd had doubts that it might be a bit too short. Will had a good run taking 2nd prize overall.


Pos Name Club Cat Pos Time
1 Matt. Speake Dark Peak FR. M 1 30.14
2 Will Horsley NFR M 2 32.49
30 Caroline Pollard North York Moors F50 1 39.57
42 Geoff Davis NFR M50 7 42.04
82 Dougie Nisbet DFR M45 14 46.36
94 Susan Davis NFR F50 4 49.12

116 finishers

Brampton to Carlisle, [Shortened Course], 21st November


Shaun Roberts

With all the reports of horrendous flooding in the days before this one, it was with a slight sense of trepidation that I travelled over to Cumbria on the Saturday morning. The organisers' website had said that the course might have to be shortened if water levels didn't recede, and when we got to Brampton they confirmed that we were to follow a shorter route to Carlisle, entirely on the main road, as there was a lot of lying water on the quiet loop to the south that is normally taken. On the positive side, weather conditions were ... perfect! There was a bit of drizzle about, but it was quite mild, a bit breezy - but the wind was from the south-east, and so pretty much behind us.

Off on time, and the usual gallop down the road into town, before heading west. I checked the watch at the first mile, and saw 5:55, and thought I'd better hang on a bit! Then I got a couple of ideas. If I was on for a quick one, it was a right pain that this was a short course - a PB for 9.2 miles is hardly one to tell the grandchildren about! So I wondered about actually legging it round the soggy southern loop through the puddles, and doing a full 10 miles. Crap idea obviously, and the race organisers wouldn't have been too chuffed. Then I remembered that last time here I'd actually clocked a PB for 10K at the same time, so I thought I'd push pretty hard for a good 10K time, hang in there for a couple more miles before legging it down the last hill. Much better idea.

Bit of a hill up to about three miles, and my times were slowing down quite a bit by now. Not great running conditions either, as the race car was making it very difficult for traffic to get past us all, so we were alongside cars and the odd wagon for most of the way - cyclists dodging in and out didn't help either. A purple vest came up on my shoulder - it was David Gibson, newly-joined Strider. We exchanged pleasantries, but then I managed to pull away again, pushing a bit harder. Then 10K hove into sight, and I was more than delighted to see that I'd gone through it in 39:46, what I call a "recent PB", and finally a 10K time under forty minutes. Hallelujah!

Slowed up a bit on the way into town. I looked back over my shoulder as we passed Rickerby Park - the whole thing looked full of water! Hammered down the hill half-expecting David to be coming past at any moment, but got home in a shade under the hour, as did he. I dashed straight into the showers to keep warm - quite cosy in there - then came out to see Barrie, Anna and Chris, all of whom said they'd done about 71 minutes, as had Phil, who'd outsprinted Anna to the finish. Saw Christine finishing well coming down the hill, before heading up to the Cumbrian Hotel for a pint of Guinness and a good lunch. A good race!


Pos Name Club Cat Pos Time
1 Ben Gamble Tipton Harriers M 0:46:37
28 Jane Blackett Morpeth Harriers FV45 1 0:53:03
134 Shaun Roberts MV50 14 0:59:36
141 David Gibson MV40 23 0:59:51
345 Barrie Evans MV60 11 1:11:03
350 Phil Owen MV40 37 1:11:26
352 Anna Pethybridge F 78 1:11:29
356 Chris Hedley MV50 39 1:11:55
455 Christine Farnsworth FV55 8 1:27:45

473 finishers.

Town Moor 10K, 8th November

Anna Pethybridge

It was a very wet morning that saw around 500 runners assemble on Newcastle Town Moor for the Memorial 10k hosted by Heaton Harriers. But by the time we were stood at the start line, observing two minutes silence, the rain had stopped and the sun was, if not exactly shining, then at least slightly more visible! The course is advertised as fast and flat, which indeed it was. It was a slowish start round the lake/pond but the pace soon picked up. Choosing once again to run without a watch or MP3 player I had a very confusing moment when I passed an 8km marker after what felt like 20 minutes. Thoughts of smashing the 36 minutes ladies record zoomed into my head when I realised that I was still on lap 1 of 2. And two very scenic and pleasant laps they were too. Having settled into a reasonable pace I let my mind wander to how amazing it is that cows still graze on the town moor. I wasn't in such a benevolent mood when minutes later I had to plod through poo from said cows, keeping my mouth shut to avoid poo-splash from the runner in front! Luckily there were some strategically placed flooded bits of the path which allowed me to give my shoes a clean on route. By the time I finished I was wet and muddy but very pleased to have secured a PB. I would definitely recommend this run - it's near, cheap (£5), fast and flat.


Pos Name Club Cat Pos Time
1 Jonathan Taylor Morpeth H & AC M 1 30.04
25 Claire Simpson Chester-Le-Street & Dist AC L 1 36.25
291 Anna Pethybridge F 47.54

505 finishers.

Guisborough Three Tops Fell Race, North Yorks Moors, 8th November


Shaun Roberts

Phil collects the winner's prizes! Hope Phil Sanderson got to see some of this little lot ...

Jan's writing a report on this one at this very moment!

But when she's finished it, it'll probably mention that it was a great run over the moors, rather unhelpfully interrupted by three long walks, one up Roseberry Topping. She'll also be telling you how Phil Sanderson won this after a night of fever and diarrhoea, and describe the state he was in afterwards. Warm drinks and a Mars Bar were offered, but he had to leg it sharpish after the race. I ate the Mars Bar, waste-concious readers will be pleased to hear.

She won't have seen a fine sprint finish between Phil and Dougie, but hopefully she'll be saying that she had a good run, as did Nigel and I.

Jan Young adds:

Really enjoyed race - glad I survived, I must be stronger than I think. It was a tough run - plan on doing more. Sorry to disappoint you report-wise - Phil Owen said he'd write report. I'm full of cold, payback time, no exercise this week. See you soon...

Phil Owen adds:

The last race I did run by Esk valley was the short but killer haul up the 1.3 mile and 800ft (approx) of Roseberry Topping race that will had won before I reached the top! Later on my Hardmoors run (yes, I will finish a report soon Shaun) I climbed it and met up with Jez Bragg (100K and 100mile champion ) who was marshalling. Meeting at Guisborough rugby club before heading to the hill to the short road start, I again was ready for Roseberry. This time I had striders Nigel, Dougie, Shaun, Jan, Phil Sanderson, Steve and Brian from DFR although some striders were also wearing their DFR and NFR 'away' kit. As with the Roseberry topping race the little talk beforehand was a gem. Last time I remember him saying that there was a whole host of safety rules and regs that we should know and they were on the bonnet of his car at every race and he expects that we have all read them! Today's talk was much in the same vain with the idea being that it's a tough race but if you don't know that its going to be clarty as hell with steep climbs and descents you shouldn't be here and if you don't gan canny you might just get yourself hurt and ... ! Enough said.

From the road outside the club we assembled and duly set of onto a cinder track and into the first wood. I always find these fell runners fast. Back in the day (hark at me - only been running 3 years !) I would hide in a pack in a some 10K safe in the knowledge that as slow as I am there were many a lot slower with fell run runners its it seems it's just not the case. They all seem to be as fast as bugger up the hills. The tough climb through the woods seemed to go on forever (see Dougie's photo's for the profile) heading for Highcliff Nab. In the past I have been put off doing some of these fell races by my appalling map reading and the thought of getting lost (and I tell you don't even think of ringing any of those funny telephone numbers they give you with the directions is pointless- not one of them work!) but the odd strip of red and white tape gave clues to of the way. To be fair most of the time slowies like me usually have someone in line of sight but I relied on that earlier in the year on the Ochills 2000 race. I followed a lass I knew had done the race twice before only to find out when I caught her up that she was completely lost!

Across a moorland that was tricky underfoot I finally started to pick up my pace and overtake a few folks where I could but overtaking on the muddy single track isn't easy and I made a mistake of getting too close to another runner I could not get around. That runner came upon a ditch of peat bog and instead of jumping the ditch straight away he stuttered and then jumped slowing me down so much I had to do the same but could not get enough momentum and had no choice but to plunge my feet down the bog. Up to my knees I went and suction trying to take my inov8's into the netherworld. Now recently I watched a Youtube vid of a fetchies mate called Andy money that on a multiple lap XC race lost his shoe in the ditch and spent most of the race trying to find it while dodging all the other runners. He never found the shoe again but became a mini sensation and had his 15 minutes out there in the field. Now at every race he gets "keep your shoes on lad" from all un sundry! Off the moor and threw a kissing gate the guy behind me is a bit keen and pushes the gate before I exit hitting my foot right on the really sore bit I've been protecting because I think I have a small stress fracture and had to pull out of a road race a couple of weeks ago after standing on a small stone. Hell what are the odds of that? I mean most gates have loads of clearance anyway. The guy could not have been more apologetic as I yelped but I explained the gate just hit the one place that was sore already and had a laugh about it. Onto the Cleveland way heading to Roseberry topping was fairly straight forward. I love the view you get looking down the valley and up to Roseberry. Lovely downhill with folks avoiding the lethally smooth stone walking slabs for more grip on the grass and mud. I worked out the slabs were quicker if you can stay upright and managed a few places going this way. Hard fast hands on knees walk up the topping where an impromptu dog show was taking place. It was tough choice but as lovely as the back lab was I declared the Westie the winner much to the enjoyment of the owner (those of you that know me know I split with a previous girlfriend - I forget her name, will know how much I miss our Westie a dog so the competition wasn't really fair and there should be some law about who get the dog and visiting rights!) I rounded the trig point and the dropped of the other side.

Now from here the path is unclear and there are several ways you can take to the next top of hanging stones. In true 'they look like they know where there going' style I followed the guys in front. I thought all three can't get it wrong and they look like they know where they're going. Err no. We got turned around up just up a hill in Huttons' Lowcross woods and had to double back. Steve of DFR had passed me here and as we came back to the proper route (a slight turning up another steep woodland hill (again)) I met Dougie who looked bemused at my wrong turn. Dougie and I enjoy our little back of the pack battles in these races and another very long hard climb followed to the top I overtook Dougie somewhere along the climb and then we were back onto the Cleveland way and back onto the moorland with the bog ditch we came across before. Now I knew that race was almost over and there would be a steep downhill finish but the last mile or so was all climbing and with my current low fitness I felt I was struggling. Dougie passed me looking strong on this last climb and pulled away. This gave me a bit more vim and I tried to claw him back. Finally at the top and onto moorland with the moorland bird going crackers at our presence I rounded to the trig point and onto the rough dodgy moorland. I picked up my pace and was just behind Dougie by the kissing gate. One mile to go and all downhill! Yes! - pure mud slop and steep down is just my thing and I over took a few including Dougie who came back at me hard on the last flat road bit near the finish with me having to put a little spurt on when I saw him coming. What a fabulous race and the series (printed with start times on the back of the number you keep-what a good idea!) looking so good I have changed some plans already to take in the ones I can.

Jan came in next and DFR, NFR and Elvet chated before we moved onto the rugby club for bacon butties and black sheep ale. Perfect. Everyone seemed to have run a good race and hapy enough but Philip Sanderson of Elvet and NFR was magnificent winning the race by one second after a herculean effort after to overhaul the leader in the dying strides despite being seriously unwell overnight. He still looked so unwell and mildly hypothermic in the rugby club after so we sent him home to bed which meant I got to collect his fist prize of champers and beer.

Both tasted lovely. Get well soon mate.


Pos Name Club Cat Pos Time
1 Phil Sanderson NFR M40 1 68.13
29 Caroline Pollard North York Moors FV50 1 82.39
51 Shaun Roberts MV50 11 87.43
57 Nigel Heppell MV55 2 89.45
90 Phil Owen MV40 17 97.22
91 Doug Nisbet MV45 13 97.23
105 Jan Young FV55 2 104.31

119 finishers.

Gibside Trail Race, 1st November


Shaun Roberts

The forecast was right for once - it tipped it down all through the morning, as it had done all through the previous night! Jamie and I had a good firm warmup to try and get the systems going a bit, and at ten o'clock we were ready for the off. A dripping wet Joy Bell on the start line warned us, as usual, to be careful going down to the river, and also said this was the last time we'd be able to use the Avenue - complaints from the estate management about damage, would you believe? [No, quite frankly. Ed.] A bit of a false start, and we were off ...

Will went off sharpish, and I pushed hard as well to begin with - I was expecting Jamie to go whizzing past at some stage, but he'd probably had more at a Halloween party the night before than he was letting on, so that didn't happen. The usual long uphill drag after a mile (we were back to the normal seven-mile course this year) then all the winding bits before heading (carefully) down to the river to make a bit of hay while the sun didn't shine before the bit of a walk to get back up the hill. I walked a chunk of it, anyway! After some nice fast bits, we ended up on the long soggy run-in along the Avenue to the finish. There were a fair few puddles about on the grass, and down by the riverside, and lots of water about in parts. At one point I noticed a frog by the side of the track ahead pause for a gap in the field, then hop casually across in front of me. Cocky little sod. To be honest, though, it wasn't too bad underfoot, and I was glad to have gone with the road shoes.

Jane takes a last soggy run along the Gibside Avenue.

No one was hanging around for long at the finish, as it was still tipping it down, and quite breezy, so it wasn't quite as sociable an occasion as usual. Also, the refreshment tent afterwards was full of steaming bodies getting changed, so you kept getting body parts in your ear as you worked your way through the excellent muffins, which was a mixed blessing.

Nonetheless, it was a damned good race once you'd got nice and warm. Will was first Strider home in a splendid 5th, and Debs was first Strider lady, ever so close to beating Dougie to the line, which wouldn't have made his day at all ...

Dougie adds, on this very subject:

My race was fairly depressing at first as Alan, Nina, Steph, Gary and Debs all passed me early on. I stuck with Nina for a while but on the 'Hollow Walk' descent she screeched away and at one time I couldn't see any purple ahead at all. The climbs worked in my favour though and in the last few miles I steadily clawed back my places. At the top of the last hill it was exactly as it was last year. Debs was about 100 yards ahead of me and as we turned to descend I thought she'd click her heels and pull away.

There followed one of the most exciting race finishes I've had for a long time. The gap between us varied back and forth until the beginning of the Avenue where I found myself just a few yards behind. I must confess to rather unsporting behaviour at this point as I knew in a straight sprint Debs would outclass me. So I had to be devious. In a manoeuvre that I've used many a time in my velodrome days, I moved out wide and to the right and making sure another runner was between us and that Debs would have less chance of seeing me and 'getting on my wheel', I went for it. It was a long hard sprint to the line and I dared not look round. Into the tunnel and, rather sheepishly, I turned to see Debs wagging her finger at me and repeating "You Bugger!" over and over ...


Pos Name Club Cat Pos Time
1 Iain Twaddle North Shields Poly M 0:41:31
5 Will Horsley M 0:43:14
23 Jenny Watts Unattached F 1 0:47:04
69 Shaun Roberts MV50 0:51:16
104 Jamie Steel M 0:53:55
203 Dougie Nisbet MV40 0:59:37
204 Debs Goddard FV35 0:59:38
212 Steph Barlow FV35 1:00:17
214 Nina Mason FV35 1:00:23
227 Alan Smith MV60 1:01:08
236 Frank Coffield MV60 1:01:51
256 Gary Davies M 1:03:23
263 Jean Bradley FV50 1:03:53
265 Jane Ives F 1:04:06
294 Mary Coffield FV55 1:06:05
323 Jim Nicholson MV60 1:09:22

386 finishers.

Derwentwater 10, Keswick, 1st November

Barrie Evans

The 50th running of this event around the lake starting from the Moot Hall in Keswick seemed at times as if it was through the lake as long stretches of the roads were under water and paddling became a necessary adaptive skill (warning of the likely conditions had been noted on the jog to the start as the river Greta was seen to be in full flood), car drivers frustrated themselves by the conditions and being further slowed by runners added to the discomfort by creating un-needed cold showers as they sped past already bedraggled participants. After a glorious Saturday the forecast for once was spot on and rain and wind lashed the Lake District with Keswick recording 46mm of rain (3rd after Capel Curig 58mm and Dundee 56mm) in 24 hours.

This race, a classic in the road running calender, was once widely supported by Striders but a clash of fixtures and the lure of an easy 7 miles at Gibside [Yeah, yeah, yeah. Ed.] saw just two stalwarts on the start line. From the off the route is undulating and at times the road appeared merged with the lake, dry feet were never an option. After Grange where the water was lapping the underside of the hump backed bridge a long gradual uphill of about 3 miles follows with Catbells coming up on the left. A lot of debris on the road (leaves, gravel, twigs, sticks and branches swept by overflowing streams etc) added to the interest and/or caution as the downhill to Portinscale followed, by which time it had briefly stopped raining, prior to reaching the A66 and the last mile or so to the finish at Keswick School which proved a welcome relief. I have run in worse conditions but on the day I wasn't able to immediately recall the fact. Many past winners had been invited to attend and be involved with a celebration of an event first run in 1960 when 70 or so hardy Lakeland club athletes took part, [some including the prolific Ron Hill still running (1:31:10) and Kenny Stuart , the course record holder (49.15) icons of road and fell running of its earlier years].

A testing and tough event in benign conditions it is thoroughly recommended and hopefully Striders will return in force in years to come.


Pos Name Club Cat Pos Time
1 Andi Jones Salford Harriers M 0:51:48
9 Rebecca Robinson Kendal AC F 1 0:59:09
282 Barrie Evans MV60 1:24:58
393 Christine Farnsworth M 1:44:18

410 finishers.