Sixteen keen Croft Runners took part in this years Wye Valley Runners Muddy Woody race in Haugh Woods.
It certainly lived up to its name! All the tracks that weren’t fire-tracks were very muddy. I did see someone lose their trainer and have difficulty pulling it back out of the sticky mud. There was lots of slipping and sliding and while going along the edge of the paths did help, you then had to contend with the brambles – there were quite a few scratched legs at the finish. However, I am pretty sure there were no major falls or injuries, definitely not on the Croft team anyway!
At just over 6 miles, this is not an easy race. It is a very undulating course with very little level running. There are a few steep climbs – one part an actual climb, which makes it not unlike a fell race. With all the mud there was no relief on the downhills as it was a battle to stay upright. Having told Lucy at the start that I thought they had replaced the river crossing with a bridge, I did wonder if she was cursing my name as she went through the calf-deep cold water. The end of the race is also very tough. You come onto the fire-track to a marshal saying ‘less than half a mile to go’ and a few supporters clapping, and then they send you off to a steep downhill path to the left just to make you turn around and have to climb back up to the track again with very little left in your legs to make that sprint finish to the end. Really tough mentally but looking back, a great way to end a race.
The winner of the race was Matt James of Hereford Couriers in an eye-watering 44.54. First Lady was Holly Gourley of Ledbury and District Harriers in 55.39.
First Croft home was Will in 22nd, 54.21.
Gemma Mallett 41st, 57.38
Roxy 59 1.02.19
Steph Main 71 1.05.17 FV45 winner!
Jo M 83, 1.06.48 FV50 winner!
Katie B 85, 1.06.50
Louise Reynolds 86, 1.07.03
Jo T 87 1.07.13
Lucy 89 1.07.26
Sam 110 1.10.14
Mark W 156 1.14.33
Rob 163 1.15.10
Steph K 188 1.18.03
Tory 250 1.26.52
Lisa 260 1.29.46
Heather 289 1.46.13
We had a great race and to top it off, Gemma, Roxy and Steph were the winning ladies team – taking home some bottles of Wye Valley Brewery Beer.
It felt really good to be part of the Croft team for this. We had mainly travelled together and it was great to have team mates shouting for you as you cross the line. What a great time to be part of such a fantastic team.
Thanks to Nick Latty, race photographer who gave me permission to use this photo. He has some great photos of the run on his Flickr page: click here for the link: Nick Latty’s Flickr page
There is also a great selection of photos on the Croft facebook page.