More success on the fells
On Saturday 4 Striders ran in the Carding Mill Canter. This is an excellent fell race of around 8k with 500m of climb, taking in the hills around the Carding Mill Valley in Shropshire. Conditions were good for running, although there was snow (just) on the hilltops, and Paul Jeggo again ran well, finishing 9th overall and 1st Vet 50 in a time of 49m3s, just over 6m behind the winner. Roger Gooding, Tim Brockington amd John Williams also ran, and full, and incorrect, results can be found at merciafellrunners.org.uk Paul is also likely to win his age category in the Shropshire winter hill series, even if he loses his current overll 1st place before the final race at the Wrekin in early April.
The previous week was the New Chew, a fell navigation event over the rough terrain of the Saddleworth Moors. There were 3 courses, Long Score and Short Score, where the runner visits as many controls as possible in a set time, and a scoreless event, where there is no time limit, but all specified controls must be found. Janet Hill and John Williams ran the scoreless event, and while it has to be said that the competition was a little less than fierce, they won the event.
There are a number of fell races in the coming months; the next is The Wrekin in early April; there is a possible weekend away in mid May for 3 days in May at Hayfield in Derbyshire, and Midsummer Madness in June. Further details of trips will be on the chatboard.
Mid Essex winners!
A beautifully sunny, almost spring-like, Sunday morning brought the final fixture in the Mid Essex league XC at Little Baddow. With the Strider men only one point ahead of LOSS, there was all to play for.
A total of 21 men and 7 women turned out for the yellow and white. A wonderfully muddy course had been organised by LBRR.
The scoring team for the men began with Tom Cammack in first place, who was so far ahead of the rest that he walked the final stretch! Following Tom were Mark Edwards in 4th, Stuart Raven in 7th, Paul Jeggo in 13th, Alan Ashton in 20th, Jon Byford in 23rdand Mark Buckley in 24th. This gave the men second place on the day and joint First in the league with LOSS. Well done guys!
The women did well also; first lady home was Catherine Hull in 9th, followed by Nichola Hands in 14th, Lauren Buck 16th& Allison Gillan 18th. Jo Gemmill 26th, Amelie Mollinghoff 40th& Sarah Goodwin 55thalso ran. The ladies were second on the day after LOSS but secured joint second with Braintree in the league. Well done ladies!
A most enjoyable season of XC in the Mid Essex league and well done to everyone who took part, whether it be running, scoring, filming (!), marshalling or helping in any way.
Tom Cammack bathed in sunlight during his "walk" to the finish
Mens team joint winners with LOSS
Weekend round up
Essex league Chingford
Saturday afternoon saw a much depleted Striders contingent travelling to Chingford, possibly due to the Bentley Half the following day, for the final Essex league xc fixture. Rain clouds threatened but luckily the ladies race started off whilst dry. The course was tough with lots of mud and puddles but most enjoyable nonetheless.
For the ladies: Allison Gillan 38th, Kirsty Williams 40thand Sarah Goodwin 59th.
For the men: Chris Purse 54thand Jon Byford 75th.
Overall at the end of the Essex league fixtures, both ladies and men’s teams were 8thout of 22 and 26 teams respectively. Individual positions were given to the following: Tom Cammack 8thSM, Kirsty Williams 11thV35 women, Jon Byford 14thv40 men, and Sarah Goodwin 14thV45 women.
Great Bentley half
It seemed that most Striders were concentrating their efforts on the fast and flat Great Bentley half this weekend, possibly as part of marathon training. A total of 40 Striders completed the race on a very windy day.
Well done to June Allen as 2ndlady, Nikki Brockbank 1stfv35, and with Samantha Monk the ladies scooped 1stteam prize as well. Great running again from the ladies.
53-12 Notley XC
A fine sunny morning in Notley Country park for the second week in a row; this time for the 53-12 league fixture hosted by Witham RC. Yet more rain during the week meant that the going was a little squelchy underfoot!
The juniors kicked off with a total of 11 “mini Striders” of a field of 96. Well done to Luke Allen for 9thposition and first Strider junior home. Junior positions were as follows: Matthew Allen 33rd, close packing by Lawrence Martin 49th, Ben Kersey 50thand Bryce Bannister 51st; then Charlie Hands 66th, Ralph Edwards 68th, Danielle Sirrett 77th, Thomas McHale 85th, Katie Brazier 93rdand Ali Brazier 95th.
For the ladies, Liz Davies came a great first with the rest of the scoring team of Jenny Chewter (11th), Polly Bridgman (13th) and Jenny Lovelock (14th) ensuring that the ladies were second on the day. A total of 11 ladies ran for Striders.
Tom Cammack led the Strider men in 2nd, followed by Gavin Allen in 5th, then Lee Martin, Mark Edwards and Steve Moore in 13th, 14thand 15th. The rest of the men’s scoring team was made up of Jon Byford in 47th, Andy Mason in 50thand Ken Hands in 51stand the men were also 2ndon the day. A total of 23 Strider men ran.
Overall in the league, Striders lie 2nd, 6 points behind Ipswich Jaffa with 28 points but closely followed by Colchester Harriers with 21 points. The last fixture of the season is on 23rdFebruary hosted by Hadleigh Hares so Striders need to be out in force!
Long Mynd Valleys Weekend
Conditions on Saturday were foul for the first of the weekends races, the 4k Tittersone Clee race up, round the trig pillar and down the highest hill in Shropshire. Despite the howling wind drving the rain and snow flurries this was a good race for Striders. Paul Jeggo won the M50 category, as usual, Janet Hill took the award for F55 and John Williams the M60 prize. Best preformance of the day came from Edd Charlton-Weedy, equalling the feat of erstwhile captain Mark Healy sometime in the last century, and winning the race, beating his nemesis from last year, local Mercia man Paul Jones. Tim Brockington also ran, but suffered the fate of many in past years, and did not find a good descent route.
The same 5 lined up for the Sunday race, the 18.5k Long Mynd Valleys. Despite the generally fine conditions there was to be no repeat of the prize glut of the previous day, with category winners John and Paul beaten into 2nd place; Janet however retained her title as 1st F55, though a computer timing glitch initially indicated otherwise. Edd was on course for a top 10 finish again, but his failure to recce the course changes led him astray after the last checkpoint atop Yearlet, adding some 8 minutes to his time, and giving him a somewhat embarrassing finish, running up the road from the south east rather than down the spur from the south west. Janet also had an interesting finish, 3rd lady home, (after an early start, so actually just over an hour slower, but in a still creditable time of just over 3 hours). Despite his walkabout Edd still ran well enough to win the shield for the weekend; an excellent performance, and from a quick look at the names on the shield the first time that this has been accomplished by a Strider.
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