The UK's most southerly fell race, the Charmouth Challenge, traditionally takes place in July each year. If it was ever going to have to be cancelled due to torrential rain, you would think that July would offer the most fail safe option and the best weather of the year to avoid that... not so in 2012, the wettest summer on record! The race was rescheduled to 16th September and went ahead in dry, sunny conditions two months later than billed.
The route covers a distance of almost 8 miles but with 1900ft of climb that sees runners summit the highest point on the south coast: the Golden Cap.
On the start line for the Harriers, that staunch off-road running pair of Hugh Marsden and Dawn Teed. As with 'Race the Train', the 'Haytor Heller' and the 'Sidmouth Festival 10k', this is another race that they complete year on year and it's yet another multi-terrain toughie.
Like last year, Hugh was just pipped to the 1st MV50 spot, this time by a Poole Runners athlete who finished less than a minute in front of him. Hugh finished in overall 11th - incidentally, the exact same position as last year, but over a minute quicker than last year - just over the hour in 1:00:22.
Dawn also had a fine run, taking 1:22:11 to claim 60th spot overall and 7th FV40. Impressively, this was well over a minute faster than her time from last year and saw her place a massive 82 places higher, highlighting that she has had a super summer 2013 season and also showing a good spring-board from which to launch herself into the Westward Cross-country league which she plans to tackle this winter.
The race was won by Kyle Hackett of Poole Runners in 54:36. Top woman was Lin Lascelles, an FV45 athlete from Maiden Newton Runners, in 1:05:40.
95 finishers - well well down on last year's numbers, no doubt due to the postponement of the race.