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ndrc runners line up at ironbridge

Newport Runners at Ironbridge to Mont Blanc

Author | 02 July 2019

Last Wednesday, a large cohort of Newport & District Running Club’s members descended upon the Ironbridge Gorge for the fourth race in Telford AC’s Sexarathon series.

This 4-mile race, containing a 439-strong field, started in the car park just south of the Iron Bridge itself, and headed east, following the River Severn through Jackfield, before crossing the river into Coalport. The route continued following the river east, before runners crossed back over at the Woodbridge, before following the south side of the river back towards Jackfield via the old railway line, finishing at the same place as they started. Runners were glad to see that, unlike the previous race in the series, it wasn’t raining.

Robin Guy was the first Newport runner to reach the finish, taking 25 minutes and 5 seconds to complete the course, and finishing in 43rd place. Tom Pope was next, just over a minute behind Robin, 64th in 26:18, and he was not too far ahead of Oscar Johnstone, who ran a time of 26:36 in 72nd place. David Brown took 93rd place, recording a time of 27:40, and Phil Dolding just missed out on a top-100 spot, coming in 106th in 28:13, just ahead of Daniel Miles, who was 116th in 28:28. Neil Fairbrother and Phil Cross ran together for almost the entire route, before a sprint finish in the final 200m, where Neil took 123rd place in 28:52 and Phil was 126th with a time of 29:01.

Richard Bennett was the next Novaportan runner to finish, taking 142nd place in a time of 29:43, and Nigel Ingram came in just under a minute later, 158th in 30:36. Simon Yap ran well to be 161st in 30:39, whilst Emily Pope and Darren Hesbrook-Edwards finished together, with Emily (165th, 30:46) just taking the honours by 2 seconds and 1 place, and Elizabeth Bennett was close behind them, running a time of 31:01 to take 171st position. In 177th place was Phil Link (31:11), and in hot pursuit of him were Stephen Mansbridge (190th, 31:38) and Kirsty Greenhead (192nd, 31:41).

Paul and Amy Hughes were the next NDRC runners to arrive back at the finish, in 229th and 230th place respectively, with Paul (33:14) just about taking the honours on the line from Amy (33:16). At this stage, Newport runners were arriving thick and fast at the finish area, with Ralph Humphries taking 247th place in a time of 34:04, and Selwyn Plant (251st) and Jo Lutner (252nd) each recording a time of 34:15 as they finished together. Ellen Deighton ran strongly to record a time of 34:45 in 263rd position, not far ahead of Steve Cannon, who finished 267th with a time of 34:53, and Jennie Waters, who was 269th in 34:54.

Other NDRC finishers: Oliver Stokes (287th, 35:59), Nick Wylie (321st, 38:08), Annabel Montgomery (323rd, 38:13), Lisa Yap (324th, 38:14), Helen Jackson (325th, 38:14), Helen Reid (342nd, 39:36), Lorraine Meredith (355th, 41:08), Toni Ireland (358th, 41:25), Donna Hesbrook-Edwards (366th, 41:52), John Stokes (389th, 43:45), Louise Patterson (391st, 43:52), Jennifer Williams (398th, 44:35), Heather Campbell (415th, 48:33), Aimee Marriott (426th, 50:45), Hilary Stevenson (431st, 52:50)

Cannock Chase Trail Half Marathon (Re-Run): 29/6/19

You may recall that, back in April, we reported on the Cannock Chase Trail Half Marathon, a race where, due to a few issues with directional markers, runners were sent off-course and ended up running much further than they should have. The organisers were good enough to offer a re-run of the event, which took place this weekend, with free entry offered to those runners who took part in the April edition.

Matt Lee and Richard Bennett were the two Newport & District RC runners who returned to The Chase this time around, to find that sweltering temperatures awaited, on what is a very tough course on the trails and hills of the popular Staffordshire beauty spot. Matt was 54th, in a time of 2:08:50, whilst Richard finished 90th, with a time of 2:19:02. These times were no mean feat, on a course with nearly 400m of climbing, on one of the hottest days of the year so far!

Shifnal Half Marathon: 30/6/19

The Shifnal Steeplechase Half Marathon took place on Sunday 30th June. It was the 15th running of this race, so named as the multi-terrain route runs between churches in Shifnal, Ryton, Beckbury, and Kemberton, before returning to finish in Shifnal. 6 members of Newport & District Running Club took part on a very sunny and breezy day as part of a field of 236 runners.

First back for the club was Joanne Lutner in a time of 2 hours 1 minute and 30 seconds, earning her 119th place. Next to cross the line was Laura Sutton in 147th place in 2:11:29, followed by Ellen Deighton in 152nd place in 2:12:50. Annabel Montgomery was right behind her, finishing in 2 hours, 13 minutes and 14 seconds to claim 153rd place. Martin Murdoch was the next club member to finish with a time of 2:16:20 and 160th place, and rounding out the club contingent was Ralph Humphries who finished in 2:21:28 and 178th place. For some of the group, this was their longest run since completing marathons earlier in the season, whilst others were using it as training towards longer upcoming races. Despite the heat, all enjoyed the undulating course, and were pleased to have completed in very respectable times.

Lordshill 10k: 30/6/19

On Sunday, Steve Cannon made the trip down south to take on the Lordshill 10k, a race which winds its way through the country lanes of Rownhams and Lee on the outskirts of Southampton, starting and finishing at the HQ of the Ordnance Survey. Steve managed a time of 53:38, which gave him 456th place, in a field of 668 runners.

Mont Blanc Marathon: 30/6/19

Jonathan Pierce isn’t one to shy away from some of the biggest challenges in world marathon racing, and this weekend he took on the Mont Blanc Marathon in France, a fearsome race, taking in over 2,500m of climbing over the full marathon distance.

The route started and finished in and around the town of Chamonix, normally better known as a skiing resort, and took in the settlements of Argentiere and Vallorcine, as runners wound their way through the tough, mountainous terrain.

The weather played its part too, with the current heatwave in Europe taking its toll on runners, who were glad of the mountain streams in which they could cool off! Despite the gruelling conditions, Jonathan managed to complete the course in 9 hours, 6 minutes, 30 seconds, a tremendous achievement in one of the toughest marathons going.

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