Abbeydore (Summer off-road, race 1)

Race Reports

Firstly, apologies for the delay in getting the results out – a technical hitch with the website. So, a rather depleted men’s ‘team’, but a strong women’s representation, for the first of the summer off-road races. It was a calm evening, dry and quite mild. 128 runners set off across a bumpy, sloping field, then a steep, grassy downhill (where the long grass was as slippery as if it had been wet) and a climb back up (ours is not to wonder why!) and then a faster long section onto the common and a gradual descent, before swinging right and encountering more varied terrain, with winding tracks and short climbs and descents. Finally (well not actually) we crossed a couple of grassy fields down to the river, happily low as we forded it twice (guess who designed this course!) and then a steady climb up to the woods where it got steeper. Now, finally (‘not far now’, said the marshal) three more grassy fields and back to the start area, where we ran down (shrieks from sliding runners), along, steeply up, down and then back up a steadier, runnable slope to the finish. Some, like Daren, were even tested with a sprint finish to the line. A glance at the results shows the magnificent performances of Gemma, 14th overall and first lady by over a minute and a half, of Greg and Nigel T, 8th and 9th, again having an ongoing duel but in the top 10 maybe for the first time, of Patrick who ran a storming race (19th) and of Kevin, returning from a long lay-off, in 27th place. Sue D completed the A team, who were just a few points behind 2nd placed Wye Valley B. Ian Price was first MV65, in 49th, Gary was 1st MV70 (59th overall), Kelly was third Croft lady, in possibly her first outing for the club, just ahead of Frank and Neil T. Sue P completed the B team, looking very pleased to have made it to the finish! Last, but not least, our president bravely tackled probably the hardest of the summer courses and became the 1st MV75.

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