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Distance was the focus for A&D runners this weekend, with races ranging from half marathon, marathon and Ultra distances up to 100km. With severe weather warnings in place, the events were a true test of runners’ mettle.
A&D duo Jon Pearce and Edward Rodger kicked off the weekend’s races on Saturday, embarking on the Stour Valley Path 100 Ultra. The 100km trail course followed the Stour Valley Path through Suffolk and Essex. After setting off at 7am from Newmarket, Suffolk, the pair negotiated stiles, rail and road crossings throughout the squalls.
Despite the high winds, both showed immense perseverance in running the full course. Pearce was first over the finish line at Manningtree, Essex, with a time of 13h 22min 41sec. Returning to SVP100 to cover the full distance within the strict event cut-off time, Edward Rodger put in a determined effort to finish in 15.05.16.
Twilight Chase – Saturday 10th August 2019
As the pair were nearing the end of their 100km Ultra, closer to home five A&D runners began the Twilight Chase at Rye. Starting late-afternoon, competitors ran 4.4-mile laps through the Rye Harbour Nature Reserve, covering a range of distances. The coastal course, coupled with headwinds in excess of 40mph, made the event all the more challenging.
Running half marathon distances, Lucy Johnstone (2.43.50) and Becky Hodgson (2.47.34) crossed the finish line after three laps. Christine Costiff completed four laps, totalling 17.6 miles, with a time of 2.35.44. Steve Hickman covered marathon distance in 5.12.39. Marking her Ultra debut, Sarah Homewood ran a total of 30.8 miles in 6.14.17, placing third overall.
Brett Owler Summer Marathon – Sunday 11th August 2019
As the high winds subsided, two club runners completed the Brett Owler Summer Marathon on Sunday. The two-lap course started and finished at the Julie Rose Stadium and featured hilly sections in surrounding villages and Wye Nature Reserve. Marathon man Rik Holden finished in second place overall and first in his age category, with a time of 3.36.05. Cooper Massah then completed the course in 4.45.20.