Three North Herts Road Runners, Paul Bowal, Caroline Thrussell and Jennie Fraser, travelled to Wales at the weekend to take part in the Eryie Marathon Snowdonia, a race billed as the UK’s toughest road marathon. It lived up to its’ billing with howling 30mph winds, driving sideways rain and a circling mist shrouding Snowdon’s peak.
A testing start sees the first 5 miles climbing 1,100 feet up the Llanberis Pass before a steep downhill and undulating mile until at mile 22 you endure a 3.5-mile slog to reach Bwich y Groes at 1.200ft. The final mile was an even sharper cross country skip slide downhill back into Llanberis and the welcome finish line.
Caroline Thrussell stormed the race finishing in 4.20.48 with Jennie Fraser in 4.54.20. Unfortunately, injury caused Paul Bowal to stop running at 10 miles but completing the roue on his bike he was able to offer aid to a runner who had become severely dehydrated in the dreadful conditions.
Closer to home several squirrels took part in a very wet Herts 10km and Half Marathon held at Knebworth House. In the 10k Rhia Botha finished 1st V35 in 43.10, Elwyn Howell was 3rd V60 in 46.18 and Alice Carty was delighted to run a PB, 47.46. Sharon French, running her 1st race for 4 years, was also thrilled with her 62.22.
Further success followed in the half marathon with Rachel Arnott finishing 1st V45 in 1.34.33 and Dervla Downing 2nd in the same category in 1.51.44. Laurie Scott set a course PB of 1.51.04 and also running well were Mike Philips, 1.38.19, Adam Wilson 2.00.04 and Dawn Power 2.09.34.
Park runs again proved popular with Branka Moss completing her 100th at Letchworth in 43.21 and Sue Vaughan reaching her 50th milestone at Great Denham, 27.48. Tash Pitman finished 2nd lady in Salento, Italy and Andreea Weisi-Shaw ran 28.41 at Holyrood in Edinburgh. Tom Webb finished 2nd at Exmouth in 16.59 whilst James Godfrey smashed through the 20 min barrier for the 1st time at Stevenage clocking 19.53. At Henlow Bridge Lakes John Auld was 3rd in 20.37 and Astrid McKeown and Paul Holm were 1st and 2nd ladies respectively in 21.51 and 22.19. 1st lady at Stevenage, 21.14, Tracy Pitcairn was chased hard by club mate Jane Clarke finishing 2nd in 23.33.
Also enjoying park runs were: Henlow David Edwards 22.07, Linda Aird 28.53, Letchworth James Dalton 21.49, Ian Datlen 23.13, Helen Giffin 30.43, Philip Flack 31.46. Gunpowder Darren Matussa 22.44, Bedford Ian Harvey 19.52 and Stevenage Mike Phillips 22.18, Sarah Mitcherson 26.56, Natalie Phillips 28.11, Georgia Barker 29.28, Richard Barker 29.28 and Carina Qualye 38.18.
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