Exe-rated runners!

Exe-rated runners!
The successful Harriers team, en masse, at the Erme Valley Relays, July 2013

Thursday, 30 August 2012

One marathon too many for Ellie!

Also on Sunday 26th August, over in the Channel Islands, was the annual Guernsey Marathon. I, Ellie Sutcliffe, took part in this race last year and, to my surprise and delight, won it. It was such a stunning course and so well organised and friendly that I decided to sign up again this year and to go and try and defend my title... oh, the rather nice sum of money I won last year might have also played a small part in luring me back!

This year, however, I knew that the task of winning again would be very tough as I had much stiffer competition in the form of Shona Crombie-Hicks. Shona is a vet 40 athlete from Bourton Road Runners who boasts a marathon PB of 2:38 and has previously represented Scotland at the Commonwealth Games in Melbourne, Austrailia. Last year she won and set a course record at the Jersey Marathon with a 2:53 clocking: 10 whole minutes faster than my winning Guernsey time. On paper she was the favourite. All I could hope was that with a good summer's build up I could chip some more time off my 2:59 PB and give her a decent run for her money (literally!).... er, yeah, didn't quite happen!

To cut a long story short, I came 2nd to Shona, who posted a fantastic new course record time of 2:56. I ran 3:07. Vicky Barret of Jersey came third with 3:19.

For a more detailed account of the event see my own blog site:

On on to next year when I will try and gain the honours back again... with much better preparation behind me!
Local hero, Lee Merrien, is on official race starter duties at Guernsey

Wednesday, 29 August 2012

5 Harriers take on Torbay

The other 10k road race on offer on Sunday 26th August was the Torbay Regatta event which also incorporates the Devon County Championships.

This race is deceptively tough as it entails two nasty little climbs that really push the lungs to limit, firstly as the runners climb up out of Torquay and the as they climb up out of Paignton on the return stretch. A nice downhill 800m to the finish on Corbyn Head is then a just reward for all the previous efforts.

5 Harriers chose to take on this challenge, some of whom no doubt enticed by the lure of the medals that were on offer by Devon County AA across each of the age category groupings, and others, well, because it's a nice seaside course with a good atmosphere!

First Harrier home was Andy Johnson in a time of 43:41. Andy placed 83rd overall and 10th MV45.

Next in was Andy's long time training partner, Roger Rowe. Ever competitive in his age category, Roger again took the MV65 spoils, placing 1st in a time of 44:37, giving him 92nd place overall.

Lee Russell followed on, crossing the line in 51:49 for 218th place overall and 11th MV55.

Then to the husband and wife team of Stan and Joan Mason. On this occasion it was girl power all the way as Joan showed Stan a clean pair of heels (Stan, you didn't stop to help a damsel in distress again like last year did you?!). Joan had a superb run to finish in 291st place overall in a time of 55:10. She was really really unlucky to just miss out on a podium place by just a minute in the FV50 category, coming 4th.

Stan rounded off the proceedings with a 57:00 clocking which gave him 319th place and 15th MV55.

Always a hugely popular event, there were 482 finishers on this occasion.
The race was won by Jon Gilby, also the winner of the Exeter 10k the previous week, in a swift 31:23.
The leading lady was super-vet FV55 athlete Anne Luke of Tamar Trotters, 19th overall in 38:33.

Mike does battle at Sedgemoor for the 2nd year running

There were 2 local 10k road races for the Harriers to choose between on Sunday 26th August and both of them boasted flat PB courses. It just depended whether you wanted to run in the morning or the evening. Mike Musgrove opted for the morning and headed to Langport in Somerset for the Battle of Segdemoor 10k.

This is the second consecutive year that Mike has run this race and last year he set a PB on the course but was nevertheless frustrated as he had hoped to run under 36 minutes but came in just 4 seconds over. This year, however, the pressure of running a sub-36 was not there as he has already achieved it at the Exeter 10k earlier this month, so Mike was able to enjoy this race without the pressure of hammering it the whole way round!

That said, he didn't dawdle either which is reflected in his finish position: a highly creditable 15th overall and  4th MV40.

There were 325 finishers and the race was won in a superb sub 30 minute time of 29:28 by David Cooke. What is even more amazing is that David is in the MV50 category! There's hope for us all yet!!

4 Harriers "fly" around the forest

To kick of a very hectic August bank holiday weekend of racing in the region, 4 Exmouth Harriers headed to Haldon Forest on the evening of Friday 24th to take part in the Dawlish Coasters organised 'Forest Flyer 5' race. As the name suggests, this is usually a 5 mile trail race, however, this year a marshalling mishap with one of the directional signs being turned around before the race meant that the runners headed back towards the finish prematurely, only completing a run of 3.92 miles in distance. It must be every race director's nightmare, and our thoughts go out to the Dawlish Coasters who always do an excellent job of staging races, so we hope that this will not deter them from running the event again next year.

So, the times below reflect the fact that the course was just short of 4 miles rather than 5 (otherwise, they are certainly exceptional performances!). As it stands there were still 3 very good performances from the Harriers.

Leading them home was Howard Bailey, in an excellent 5th place overall and in a super quick time of 23:35. Howard was only a little over a minute behind the winner, Pete Monaghan from Torbay AC.

He was followed just over a minute later by the in form Marc Cox who ran a very strong race for 9th place overall in a time of 24:30.

Very hot on Marc's heels was Jon Garrity who ran 24:50 for 13th place overall. His category position is unknown as they are not listed on the results page. However it's likely that he was in the top 3.

The only Harriers female representative on the night was Moira Glen who finished in 35th place overall. Moira had an excellent run, leading the ladies race for some of the way but unable to keep up the pace on some of the killer climbs, she went onto finsih 3rd female, earning herself a bottle of wine for her top effort. Moira was also the first female vet runner home in a time of 28:38, just 28 seconds behind the first female runner.

There were 118 finishers.

Marc, Moira (with her winning wine!) and Jon after the race.

Friday, 24 August 2012

It's time to 'Race the Train' again for Hugh and Dawn

It's mid-August and for Harriers duo Hugh Marsden and Dawn Teed that can only mean one thing: it's time to jump in the car and head to Wales to take part in the annual 'Race the Train' event.

This race is what it says on the tin!

Held at the town of Tywyn in mid Wales, this race follows the Talyllyn railway as runners race a steam train out and then back again, covering a total distance of 14 miles. (Though there are shorter race distance options as well, the main 14 mile race is the blue ribband event).

Alongside a railway line? Must be a fairly flat course then right? Easy. Er.... not quite. Whilst the gradient might not be steep, the difficulty of this event lies in the nature of the terrain, which is boggy (particularly so this year with all the rain), slippery and uneven, being all off-road, and which sees runners negotiating some tricky cambers, styles and rutted narrow pathways.

Dawn and Hugh are no stranger to this route though and know exactly what to expect from it. They often incorporate a short break with the race and make a weekend of it and they usually make their mark on the field by running hard, competitive races.

Last year Hugh managed to beat the train and also placed 1st MV50 overall, in what is always a top quality field. And this year? Well, he managed to do the same again. He beat the train by 10 minutes exactly as he stormed home in 1:38:44 for 29th place overall and 1st MV50. He even beat the Eryri Harrier's athlete, Arwel Lewis, in this category, whom I know well as I worked with him in Bangor University, and believe me, he is one very talented, committed and tough runner, so this is quite a scalp for our Hugh to take!

Dawn Teed also had a successful run. Not many female athletes manage to beat the train - only 7 managed it in this year's race - and so that would never have been top of Dawn's agenda. She nevertheless is always competitive and places well up the field, especially in her age category. On this occasion she finished in 494th place overall in a time of 2:16:51. This was exactly 10 seconds quicker than last year (talk about consistent!) but in much wetter, tougher conditions, which was reflected in the fact that she placed 129 places higher than last year! Impressive stuff and showing that Dawn has worked as hard as ever to keep her fitness up over the past year.
Hugh - with no train in sight as he was well ahead of it!

There were 839 finishers with the last runner taking a sedate 4:14:00 to complete the out and back course, so Dawn and Hugh really did do the Harriers proud by placing so highly up the field! Well done to both.

Sunday, 19 August 2012

Some EXEtremely good performances at the Exeter 10k

On a grey and drizzly Thursday evening on 16th August a group of 6 Harriers went to that old familiar stomping ground that is the First Chance / Exeter 10k course at Haven Banks alongside the River Exe in Exeter. Although many of us know the course like the back of our hands and find it not to be the most inspiring of routes, it does however offer the chance of recording a fast time as it is pancake flat, so PB seekers just suck it up and run for their life! The only thing that can slow times is a headwind on this course, and the weather was not particularly kind to runners on this evening as there was a stiff headwind blowing up river on the outward stretches which will have added on precious seconds.

Talking of PB seekers, the first Harrier home, Mike Musgrove, did just that: he went out hard, hammered his way around the course and set a new PB! Not only was it a new PB it was also his first sub-36 minutes 10k, with him finishing in 35:53. This gave him 14th place overall and placed him 1st in the MV40 category. However, I am sure that Mike will be more excited by the fact that he has finally nailed that much covetted sub-36 minute time that he has been after for a couple of years now. Well done Mike!

Next in was myself, Ellie Sutcliffe. I set my PB of 38:04 in this race last year and earlier in the season my target was to get my first sub 38 minute 10k at the Exeter 10k. However, a hectic racing schedule, alongside marathon training and the old achillies injury meant that I have not been able to train much for the past month and so a PB looked less and less likely. I still gave it my all but the sharpness just wasn't there and so I crossed the line 45 seconds adrift of my PB in 38:49. This gave me 36th place overall and 3rd female.

Then came Richard Hawes, a fairly recent recruit to the Harriers, Rich's running is going from strength to strength at the moment, and this was his first outing on an accurately measured, fast 10k course, and so he wanted to test himself and see where he is at with his running. And the verdict? Well, he's doing darn well! He stormed around the course to a superb time of 41:35, giving him 57th spot overall. To say that Rich has not been running long and is only now starting to take it seriously and do some structured training, this is a remarkable result. Much more to come there, we're sure!

Andy Johnson is in fine form at the moment, having just recorded a fast 5k time the previous week. That must have sharpened his legs for this 10k challenge as he covered the distance in a swift 42:51 for 74th place overall.

Next to Roger Rowe, super-vet extraordinaire and long time running fanatic. Roger made light work of the course and cantered home in 43:49, easily good enough for top spot in the MV65 category and placing him very high up the field overall in 86th place. Age is no barrier if you are determined!

Last in but by no means least was our press man, Dave Eveleigh. Dave is in much better shape than this time last year and this is evidenced by the fact that he carved one and a half minutes off his 2011 time at this same event. Tonight he ran 45:51 which secured him 107th place overall and 5th MV55. Let's hope that 2013 will see him getting even stronger and faster and drawing closer to some of the amazing times he set in age categories gone by!!

The race was won in 31:13 by visiting Derby AC runner Jonny Gilby. Shaun Antell got the better of Harriers' 2nd claim athlete, Tom Merson, on this occasion, as they took 2nd and 3rd places respectively.
Alison McEwing of Erme Valley Harriers was the first female home in 37:47.
275 finishers.

Sorry, no photos as the lens steamed up in the rain :-(

Thursday, 16 August 2012

Harriers at the Peak of their performance!

Sunday 12th August saw the annual staging of the Sidmouth Festival 10k run. Organised in conjunction with the town's folk week by our neighbours, the Sidmouth Running Club, this is a tough, off-road 10k with a breathtaking (in every sense of the word!) start.

This race is always well supported by the Harriers and this year was no exception with 12 of them taking part. At 11am we all gathered on the startline at Jacob's Ladder at the foot of Peak Hill and stared up at the monster climb that faced us. Possibly the toughest start to any 10k in the country, the first 1k of the race is up a hill which climbs up to 500ft with an average climb gradient of 20%, reaching 30% in places. It's so tough that the organisers throw in a race-within-a-race and award a trophy to the first man and woman to summit, crowning them King and Queen of the Peak.

Marc and Ellie shortly after the start of the race at the foot of Peak Hill

From there the race flattens out across Mutter's Moor before dropping down into the woods, crossing the golf course and then undulating through Bulverton Plantation. From kilometer 6 to 8 there is a nice long galloping stretch on a woodland path and then, of course, what goes up must come down, and so runners are rewarded with a 1k fast descent back down to the start/finish line.

The stand-out Harrier performance of the day had to come from Hannah Bown who stormed up the hill in at very swift pace to claim Queen of the Peak. Hannah claims that she "just loves this hill" (should we worry for her sanity, or just be in awe?!), so it's little wonder then that this was not the first time that Hannah has won this title; in fact her name is a regular feature on the perpetual trophy awarded for this effort. Most people might then be reduced to a walk after such a lung-busting climb, but Hannah went on to keep up a good pace and to take 2nd place in the ladies' race and racing her brother Chris in a sprint to the finish line!

Brother and sister, Chris and Hannah, in a race to the finish line.

Hannah: Queen of the Peak and 2nd female receiving her prizes.

Marc Cox followed up his fine Totnes performance from the previous week with another solid run to lead the Harriers home in 11th place overall. He paced himself sensibly throughout the race and started off steadily up the initial hill which meant he was still full of running towards the end and managed to pick people off in the latter stages who were fading fast!

Also deserving a mention is the ladies team composed of myself, Ellie Sutcliffe, Hannah Bown, Emma Dupain and Dawn Teed as we claimed the winning ladies' team prize and were awarded with a huge trophy for our efforts. This is the first time the Harriers ladies' have won this and our club name will now join the previous winners, Sidmouth RC, Honniton RC and S.W.R.R. (who have had it for the last 2 years).

Dawn Teed storming home to help the Harriers' ladies lift the female team prize
Here's how all 12 Harriers faired:

Marc Cox: 11th overall in 43:59
Hugh Marsden: 14th overall; 2nd MV50 in 45:21
Ellie Sutcliffe: 18th overall, 1st female in 46:42
Chris Dupain: 25th overall in 49:02
Hannah Bown: 26th overall; 2nd female and Queen of the Peak in 49:02
Ben White: 43rd overall in 53:56
Nigel Dupain: 52nd overall; 2nd MV60 in 55:31
Emma Dupain: 58th overall; 10th female in 56:11
Ray Elston: 68th overall; 1st MV70 in 58:25
Dawn Teed: 72nd overall; 5th FV40 in 59:52
Lee Russell: 82nd overall in 1:02:33
Jim Wyatt: 92nd overall; 2nd MV70 in 1:06:18

The winning female team: Dawn, Hannah, Emma, Ellie and their massive trophy!

There were 109 finishers and the race was won in 38:57 by Liam Roberts of Axe Valley Runners. AVR also took the men's team prize.

A lovely, low-key event, well marshalled, well organised and great atmosphere. Definitely worth a go if you've not run it before, but make sure you get the hill training in first!

Monday, 13 August 2012

Bon voyage Katie!

It is with a mixture of sadness and happiness that we must bid a fond farewell and wish bon voyage to stalwart Harrier member, Katie Comer. Sad to see such a popular member leave the club but happy for her as she is going on to a dream job and to fulfil the chance of a life time by being paid to travel the world as an over-land trek leader... destination t.b.c.!

Katie has been a member of the Harriers for a fair few years now and during that time she has shown consistent commitment by throwing herself (and her huge personality!) into any activity going; be it club runs, representing the club at relays, at away trips with other Harriers and at races on the local circuit. She has also been a familiar face in attendance at all the Harrier social events and with her bubbly personality, beaming smile and positive approach to anything, she can always be relied upon to ensure that everyone has a good time and feels included. She's also a very thoughtful member of the club who, on more than one occasion, has volunteered to hang back during club nights to help any struggling runners (including my goodself recently when I was forced to walk back with an injury and Katie walked each step of the way back with me, despite my best protests that I was fine and she could run on).

 All of these attributes will serve her well in her new job as she prepares to head overseas, perhaps to South America, perhaps to Asia or possibly to Africa (she doesn't yet know until after her training course) to look after groups of tourists on various treks and organised tours. We are sure she will be a big hit with her fellow colleagues and with the travellers who will be placing themselves in her care as she escorts them on over-land trips in some of the world's most wild and inaccessible places.

We wish her every success and happiness as she embarks on this exciting new chapter in her life and we look forward to receiving regular updates from our overseas 'Exmouth Harrier on Tour' member. We also expect to be entertained by a constant stream of cracking photos of her sporting the Harriers vest in many far flung exotic corners of the globe! So stay tuned to this blog for her news!!

Funnily enough, I couldn't find any photos of Katie without a beaming grin on her face!


Sunday, 12 August 2012

Cathy's 5k come back!

On Tuesday 7th August it was Run Exe 5k time again. Conditions this month were pretty much as near to perfect as you could get, with zero wind and light cloud cover, making it not too hot and no headwind to slow the runners on the river bank.

Toeing the startline of this fast PB potential course were 3 and a half Harriers (we'll get to the 'half' in a moment)! They included Cathy Newman who we are very pleased to welcome back to the area and the club as she has now returned from working as a VSO in Eithiopia and is very much looking forward to getting on top of her running again. Tonight's 5k was, in her words, 'just to set a bench mark to work of for the rest of the season'.

She has been struggling with an injury in her right thigh for sometime and so her pre-race goal was to get in under 20 minutes and use that time as a platform upon which to improve. As she approached the finish line she was initially disappointed as she read the clock as being on 19:50 and thought she wouldn't make her target. As she got nearer, however, she saw that it was actually reading 18:50 and so she crossed the line in a fine time of 19:06, almost a minute ahead of her own expectations. This gave her 2nd female and 23rd place overall. Good to have you back Cathy!

Next in was Andy Johnson who always enjoys a fast blast around a 5k course and is a regular attendee of the Ironbridge runner series. On this occasion he ran in to stop the clock at 20:15 for 34th place. This was an improvement of almost 40 seconds on his time from the previous round last month, showing just how much the lack of wind on this course can effect times.

Dave Eveleigh also had a fine run, posting a time of 21:14 which gave him 45th place overall and 3rd MV55.  Unfortunately Dave was not able to top his superb performance from the last round and dip under the 21 minute mark this time, but he'll no doubt come back fired up to have another crack at it in the final round in September.

And so to the 'half a Harrier'. Well, he's half in that he runs for us as 2nd claim but he's certainly not half when it comes to describing his performance. Tom Merson had the run of his life to set a new PB and to smash his own (already impressive) course record by 11 whole seconds as he was pushed all the way to the line by his Bristol and West team mate, Shaun Antell, and he recorded a blistering time of 14:47. Luckily for Tom, his form and the conditions both came good on the night and this will be a tough time for any local athlete to better on this track. Well done Tom!

Monday, 6 August 2012

Seconditus strikes the Harriers at Totnes 10k!

Under threatening skies that went on to do a little more than just threaten and in fact deposited all of their liquid content over the course and the race HQ in the hours leading up to the event, the Totnes 10k took place.

Organised by the Teignbridge Trotters this has always been a popular race with the Harriers, with 13 taking part last year and 8 this. It is a phenomenally well organised event and it takes place over some stunning countryside along the river Dart and through the private land of the Dartington estate. With a BBQ, beer tent,  tea, coffee and cakes a plenty at race HQ, this race has all that you need for a successful event and draws in around 500 runners each year.

This year numbers were down slightly as the horrendous downpours will have deterred some people from turning up and entering on the day, but 443 hardy souls still braved the weather and the muddy route and all seemed to enjoy themselves, despite there being several tumbles and slip ups in the mud! The Harriers once again managed to impose their authority on the race and were competitive from the start.

The route is multi-terrain in every sense and incorporates tarmac footpaths, rutted fields, bridal paths, woodland paths, steps and river side gravel paths. Although it is predominantly flat, aside from a few climbs in the woods, this is not a fast course and in the muddy, boggy conditions this year it was even more of a challenge and keeping up a decent pace whilst running through puddles that came up to the knees was not easy!

After an exhausting 6.40 mile (and yes, the course is in fact 1/5 longer than a true 10k, just to add to the challenge) run, 8 muddy and bedraggled Harriers arrived at the finish in the grounds of Totnes Pavillion. Here's how we all got on:

Dave Stone: 13th overall and 2nd MV40 in 41:01 receiving a category prize for this. Unusual for Dave to be out of the top 10 finishers, however, this is his summer rest period and has seen him cut right back on the training, so in light of this, it was an impressive run.

Marc Cox: 19th overall in 41:55. Marc deserves a special mention as this was an absolutely fantastic run and a super time on such a tough course. Marc has only been running seriously for less than a year and he is making huge improvements with every outing. Dave Stone must have felt him breathing down his neck the whole way round! Well done Marc!

Jon Garrity: 25th overall in 43:03 and 4th MV40. Similar to Marc, Jon has not been running all that long and he is also seeing his times and performances improve with each race outing. The MV40 category is usually one of the toughest out there and now Jon is beginning to work his way up towards a top 3 placing, it is surely only a matter of time before he gets there.

Hugh Marsden: 29th overall in 43:47 and 2nd MV50, picking up a prize for his efforts in the process. The wet, muddy terrain was right up Hugh's street and as the going gets tough, Hugh always gets going!

Ellie Sutcliffe: 44th overall and 2nd lady in 45:31. A foot injury earlier in the week made me uncertain as to whether I would even be able to get round but after some, er... alternative treatment from a fellow Harrier before the race, my strapped up foot held up ok, though I did have to go steady in places to avoid turning it on the rutted uneven ground.

Scott Jordan: 77th in 48:10 and 12th MV40 (yes, Scott has now entered this prestigious age category!!). Two-Trigs was justifiably thrilled with his run as it represented an improvement of 2 minutes on his 2011 time and in much tougher conditions on a slower course this year. He also shot up the placings to finish 45 places higher than last year, showing how much he has improved and why he is the current holder of the 'male athlete of the year' title.

Ray Elston: 186th in 53:26 and 2nd MV70, also picking up a category prize alongside Dave and Hugh. Amazing to think that this fantastic time should not be good enough for the win in the category, but Ray was only just run out of it with a Torbay AC rival claiming the spoils, running less than half a minute faster.

Dawn Teed: 191st in 56:44. Although Dawn did not manage follow up her fantastic category win at the Haytor Heller 2 weeks ago with another top placing, she nevertheless came out with an impressive age-graded score and as this is her last year in her current age category before she moves up a 5 year chunk (nothing like running for managing to age you by 5 years in 1 year!), she will undoubtedly be even more competitive, particularly in these tough, off-road events which are her forté.

Finally, to round off a pan-full of 2nds, our male team, with all 6 Harriers to count, finished as 2nd placed team behind a strong Torbay AC contingent. So well done to Dave, Marc, Jon, Hugh, Scott and Ray, who all won themselves a nice crate of beer!

Race was won by Ceri Rees in a fantastic (in light of the conditions) 35:45.
First female was Nicki Nealon of Huncote Harriers in 43:38.

Hugh pushing on along one of the easier sections of the course along the riverbank.

A bedraggled bunch of Harriers post-race.

Ray missed the group photo so Scott went and snapped him in the changing rooms!

We are are drinking club with a binge running problem!

Wednesday, 1 August 2012

A bit more than 6 Moor Miles...

On Sunday 29th July I, Ellie Sutcliffe, was once again the sole Harrier out on the race circuit. With a dearth of events in the local area, the closest race on offer was the Plymouth Harriers organised '6 Moor Miles' at Yelverton on the southerly edge of Dartmoor.

On the start line I knew very little about the course as there was no route map or hill profile uploaded on the website, nor was there any indication of the sort of terrain we would be running over, other than the vague description of 'moorland', and so I set off from the race HQ at Leg O'Mutton corner on a bit of a magical mystery tour!

We had only been running for 5 minutes when the heavens opened and we got instantly soaked in the most torrential downpour. With shorts sticking to me and rain blocking my vision, I pressed on over the undulating route which was dry underfoot to start with but quite boggy by the end of the downpour!

On the first steep downhill stretch I got overtaken by another female runner. She gained about 50m on me and whilst this distance did not increase and I was able to keep her in sight, I could not manage to close the gap. Having driven back from North Wales the previous day and sat for 8 hours in the car I had severe clutch ache due to the delightful Saturday-changeover-day-on-the-M5 experience and my legs were pretty stiff and so I found the whole race quite a struggle.

The worse bit was when we got to 5 1/2 miles and I started to crank up the pace in a push for the finish, only to get to the 6 mile mark and there to be no finish in sight! I pointed this out to a marshal and he said, 'almost there, just '200m to go', but this man's distance judgement was clearly suspect as it was in fact a full 1/2 mile (800m) further to run and the race measured in at 6.5m and by the end my lungs were bursting after a 1 mile push for the finish. 2nd lady and 21st overall out of 253 finishers in 43:48. This gave me an average pace for the race of 6:50m/m, so although it felt tough the route was in fact no where near as hilly or demanding as the Haytor Heller, where I only averaged 8:30m/m!

A great little race, well marshalled, entirely off-road and a truly fantastic set-up at race HQ with £1 bacon and sausage baps, 50p cups of tea, 50p slices of cake and a free post-race massage on offer. What more do you need for a great event?!

The start of the 6 Moor Miles race: you can see the big black cloud that was shortly to deposit a ton of water on us looming large in the background!