The past fortnight has seen a plethora of Romsey Road Runners in action on the roads and trails of southern England. On Saturday, 11th June, Ryan Snell was busy representing the club at the Dartmoor Discovery, a hilly road race of 1,152m elevation spread over 32.5 miles. Ryan stormed home in 3:46 hours to take a well-deserved first place.
Ryan said of the race: “this is the best race I’ve ever done for so many reasons. The organisation is incredible, with every detail thought through from registration to the disco at the end. To be waited on with all the food and drink you want is brilliant, and to have your own drinks at super-friendly drinks stations makes a massive difference too – you don’t have to carry anything if you don’t want to. The course is obviously stunning, totally brutal and a real test – anyone who can get around it is an awesome runner. Claire on the lead bike was so much more than just a person to follow. It was pretty much non-stop encouragement and positivity all the way (except when distracted by David Tomlin!), while the ‘well lubricated’ announcer was fab. The atmosphere got better and better as more finishers were there to cheer their fellow runners home. The t shirts and medals were excellent as was the hoody. It was also really nice having Dartmoor Discovery legend Sian Longthorpe buzzing around the course with her cow bell and smiles. This race was a big one for me after giving up at 20 miles in 2017; it was a total privilege to come back and lay those demons to rest.”
The following day, Alice Lane was in Wales for the Man V Horse, a tough 22-mile race involving horses and runners, with the aim of seeing whether a human can beat a horse to the finish. Alice was running the relay, but ended up doing two legs of the hilly course when one of her team-mates fell ill. She finished in an impressive time of 2:54 hours, having run 14 miles over an elevation of 740m. The event was won by a human for only the third time in its 42-year history.
Meanwhile, Susie Parker was busy competing in the Dorset at the Big Sea 18-mile event on the Purbecks near Corfe Castle. Susie finished in an impressive time of 3:27 hours and said of the experience: “it was the perfect run for a sunny day – views of the Purbecks and a stunning run into Corfe Castle – even better that I could cool off in the sea afterwards!”
The same weekend, Alex Prinsep took on the Dorney Lake Olympic-distance Triathlon, gaining himself a new PB of 2:09 hours; Gemma Quarendon ran the Dorney Lake half marathon in the heat in 2:04, and Keith Stone ran a 200m track event in Winchester in 39:1, ranking 6th in the UK.
The following weekend Alice headed down to Cornwall for the Clovelly marathon, completing the hilly course in a time of 6:49 hours, while Mark Stileman took second place at the Ferndown 10k in a time of 38:05.
Monday evening saw several RRR’s competing in the Copythorne Carnival’s 5 and 10k races. Tim Parker took first place in the 10k in an impressive 35:42 calling the event a “really fun and friendly race”; Matt Cheales, running in his first competitive race, gained an excellent PB of 47:15, and Sue Sylvester came 2nd in her age group in a time of 53:03.
Matt said of his experience: “I really enjoyed it. It was a lovely route and there was a great atmosphere with a BBQ and music afterwards,” while Sue added: “I enjoyed the race very much. The route was two laps around the country lanes and village of Copythorne. There was a great atmosphere with a pre-race warm up and super support from the villagers all the way round.”
Excelling in the 5k were RRR’s Anna Duigan, who romped home in 29:35 to take first in age, and Wendy Couper who finished in a strong 46:58 to come fourth in age.