Continuing with his recent good form in duathlon especially on motor racing circuits Dave Brown travelled to race in the Bedford Autodrome Duathlon. The race is an ITU qualifying race and gave Dave some additional focus, but also means the competition tends to also be quite high when GB places are at stake. Held within the autodrome which was specifically designed for speed by former F1 driver Jonathan Palmer and located on a former WW2 RAF station meant it was particularly susceptible to the wind. Dave still strong from the windy Castle Combe duathlon a couple of weeks earlier performed well on the day showing his class in duathlon over the 5km run – 19km bike – 2.5km run. Dave finished 52nd overall and 5th in his age group in a time of 1:06:25 Fingers crossed for qualification and Dave is now waiting for confirmation of his GB age group team place.
The Bath Half Marathon was facing the threat of cancellation earlier in the week due to the corona virus that is sweeping the world, but fortunately the organisers decided to continue with the race and let the athletes run. The race around the beautiful city is on a traffic free course that is run over two laps and therefore misses the larger hills around the city. Although reduced numbers decided to come and race this weekend it is normally a very popular race with up to 15000 runners and estimated 30000 spectators lining the route to encourage the athletes. A trio of athletes from Torbay Tri Club raced with all achieving personal best times, which were even more impressive considering the less than ideal weather conditions. 145 Jason Hurford 1:18:31, 529 Paul Whitehead 1:27:54, 1857 Urszula Donigiewicz 1:46:52
Back in Devon Helen Mackie took part in the Arlington Court Canter in North Devon. The 10k race around a the woods of the National Trust owned Arlington Court property is a muddy and technical challenge. Helen ran a great race finishing 32nd overall and was the 3rd female and 2nd in her FV50 age group with a time of 50:50.
Dawlish played host to the latest round of Exeter Triathlon Club’s aquathlon series with four members from Torbay Tri Club taking several podium places. Starting with a 600m pool swim, the lumpy 5k run was made more challenging by the heavy rain. Gary Burman demonstrated his aquathlon GB credentials by being first back, just seconds ahead of Jon Pressling who finished third in his age group. Cassandra Harrison also took third in her age group while Naoko McKinnon topped the podium in hers. 16 Gary Burman 31:21, 17 Jon Pressling 31:32, 33 Cassandra Harrison 38:05, 45 Naoko McKinnon 44:59
Paul Carthy made the short journey up to Ashcombe to take part in the Winding Paths Totally Muddy 10k. Living up to its promise of plenty of mud the 2 lap race around the tree lined trails of Grammarcombe Woods. With a well deserved bespoke medal at the finish after all the leg sapping mud, Paul finished an excellent 16th place in 1:06:04
Torbay Velopark parkrun – 10 Jon Glasser 20:03, 28 Stephen Wilbraham 22:01, 43 Mark Maslin 23:41, 86 Naoko McKinnon 26:32, 92 Amanda Francis 26:56, 126 Jo Coish 28:52, 195 Samantha Froggatt 32:57, 205 Richard Rollings 33:49, 218 Angela Allen 36:09, 243 Dan Hallam 38:44
Teignmouth Promenade parkrun – 17 Jerry Butcher 20:36
Haldon Forest parkrun – 94 Gary Burman 34:40
Bolberry Down parkrun – 3 Jeremy Hocking 21:27
A strong contingent of 9 Torbay Tri Club members headed up to the opposite side of Devon for the Bideford Half Marathon. The race which is relatively flat with only one noticeable hilly section is run on roads and partially along the Tarka Trail. The race prides itself on the magnificent views of the Devon countryside as it sweeps alongside the River Torridge towards Great Torrington before heading back to Bideford. Notable performances of the day from Lee Turner finishing 2nd in the MV40 category and for his 2nd PB in a week Bobby Singh. 7 Lee Turner 1:14:48, 64 Ben Gerrish 1:23:54, 96 Nigel Fenn 1:27:19, 187 Ian McClean 1:35:57, 189 Matthew Botting 1:36:02, 341 Bobby Singh 1:44:25, 430 Rachel Longthorpe 1:48:33, 488 Sue Hayes 1:51:49, 686 Adam Williams 2:00:23
This weekend saw the ever popular 20 mile Grizzly run and slightly shorter 9 mile Cub race hosted by Axe Valley Runners in Seaton take place for the 33rd time. The race is popular with runners from far and wide and now has to operate a ballot system to enter due to the high levels of interest. With the recent inclement weather creating some tough conditions it promised to be an unforgettable day. The 20 miles of mud, sweat, tears and hills aplenty along with the bogs, waist deep water, sections across the beach And the 3000 feet of ascent really sets the race apart from other and perhaps explains why the race is oversubscribed year after year. In the Grizzly Darren Francis finished 67th in 3:01:07.
In the shorter but still very tough 9 mile Cub race 4 members of Torbay Tri Club took on the challenge of the the hills, mud and bogs. 13 Jerry Hocking 1:20:14, 29 Simon Johnson 1:27:07, 219 Amanda Francis 1:57:02, 276 Naoko McKinnon 2:02:50
What goes up must come down as Jon Pressling took on the gruelling KVK (Kilometre of Vert in Kernow). The run with ‘KVK’ Trail running race is a unique challenge with 1000m of total ascent over approximately 15 miles of predominantly trail running. The race is Cornwall’s twist to the Kilometre-of-Vertical ascent based races that are popular in mountainous areas like the Alps. Not finding any mountains big enough in Cornwall for a kilometre of ascent in one hit, the race is two figure-of-eight loops that take in some of the biggest climbs in the county, but unlike the usual mountain races that are uphill only, this also includes 1000m of descent to really test the legs. Jon finished an impressive 16th from 150 solo and relay teams in 2:11:49 and was especially pleased with the cowbell memento for finishing.
Torbay Velopark parkrun – 2 Jason Hurford 18:46, 3 Dave Brown 18:55, 10 Naomi Flanagan 19:58, 16 Paul Whitehead 20:48, 43 Mark Maslin 22:49, 181 Amanda Francis 30:48, 187 Samantha Froggatt 31:14, 220 Richard Rollings 33:38, 229 Paul Carthy 34:23, 251 Jason Wyatt 37:27
Teignmouth Promenade parkrun – 22 Jerry Butcher 20:24
Bolberry Down parkrun – 5 Gary Burman 20:06, 34 Stephen Wilbraham 24:29
Weymouth parkrun – 32 Frank Reay 21:52
Coventry parkrun – 747 Angela Allen 37:49
A weekend of rearranged races from the weather disruption back in February showed the continued commitment of Torbay Tri Club members to racing and completing their events.
In Exeter the half marathon was run on a traffic free and flat course adjacent to the River Exe and the Exeter Canal. Although pushed back by a couple of weeks the race remained in a good place in the running calendar for those training for a spring marathon. Bobby Singh was the sole entrant for Torbay Tri Club and ran an excellent race. Running a well paced half marathon is never easy, but Bobby ran with consistent splits and his fastest splits coming towards the end of the 13.1 miles. This is a testament to Bobby’s fitness and training and he thoroughly deserved the 21st position in a time of 1:48:30 taking 3rd place in the MV50 category.
As the latest of recent storms blew its way across the South West, a blustery Castle Combe racing circuit in Wiltshire awaited Dave Brown at the rescheduled Chilly Duathlon. The 2 mile run – 10 mile bike – 2 mile run duathlon is a popular early season event for beginners and experienced multi-sport athletes and is great as a stand alone sport or practice for the impending triathlon season. Taking place on the traffic free circuit and perimeter road, the race allows athletes to make the most of the smooth, wide and sweeping track without being impeded by normal traffic conditions as they would be on the public roads. The current lap record held by a British F3 car was never going to be threatened by pedal power but Dave did a sterling job to motor himself round to 23rd overall in 53:25. Dave showed his skill in duathlon by not only posting remarkably consistent lap times on the bike, but running the second 2 mile run 14 seconds quicker than the first.
The Exmouth Brave 10k race was yet another rescheduled event from early February. Starting and finishing along Exmouth Seafront the race has a good mix of terrain. Although predominantly along the tarmac promenade the run does climb up the cliff and onto the trails of the coast path and even has a bit of beach running thrown in for good measure. Paul Carthy completed the course for 26th place in an impressive time of 52.39.
The final Westward League cross country race of the season was held locally at Stover near Newton Abbot. Again the recent weather made for tough and slippery conditions on the 5th and final race of the league. In the senior female race two athletes from Torbay Tri Club represented the club. Securing 11th in 27:08 was Naomi Flanagan and in 57th place was Davina Cull in 34:20.
Torbay Velopark parkrun – 3 Ben Gerrish 18:25, 33 Julyan Bayes 23:08, 37 Mark Maslin 23:17, 62 Jason Wyatt 24:19, 98 Davina Cull 26:16, 132 Jo Coish 29:13, 163 Samantha Froggatt 31:21, 200 Richard Rollings 34:55, 209 Paul Carthy 35:49, 217 Angela Allen 37:15
Teignmouth Promenade parkrun – 2 Darren Francis 18:50, 9 Gary Burman 19:57, 29 Jerry Butcher 23:00, 96 Amanda Francis 27:26
Bath Skyline parkrun – 28 Wendy Urban 23:31, 34 Helen Mackie 24:20
Finally with a break in the stormy weather and multiple races having been cancelled over the previous couple of weekends, Torbay Tri Club was well represented in several races this weekend.
In Dalwood near Axminster the 3 hills challenge gave runners the opportunity to test their legs on the multi-terrain course. The 10 mile course held around the beautiful, although challenging hills between Axminster and Honiton is not for the faint hearted. The four strong contingent from Torbay Tri Club successfully battled the hills, mud and all produced excellent runs. 7 Darren Francis 1:20:09, 26 Jerry Hocking 1:32:11, 44 Simon Johnson 1:38:53, 117 Amanda Francis 2:19:48.
In Widecombe-In-The-Moor the annual Hameldown Half Marathon and the shorter 7 mile Hameldown 7Even is another tough run that’s not to be taken lightly. The annual race on Dartmoor has become popular with local trail and club runners alike and is considered to be a real feat of endurance. With virtually the whole race off road and 600m of ascent it was always going to be tough for the athletes, but the driving wind and rain also added to the element of endurance this year. Two runners from Torbay Tri Club tackled the half marathon with David Richardson comfortably under 2 hours by finishing 7th in 1:56:08. With a solid base of training Richard Humphreys also produced an impressive run at his debut Hameldown Half coming in 44th in a time of 2:17:23. Tally White took on the shorter but no less relentless 7 mile race finishing 41st in 1:33:48.
Rounding off another busy weekend of racing, three club members were entered into the Exeter City 10k. Like many of the races in Exeter the course is flat and fast and is run over two laps around the Riverside Park and Duckes Meadow Park. Representing Torbay Tri Club was Frank Reay, Kevin Crocker and Cathy Parkinson of which all of them had strong runs. 24 Frank Reay 42:59, 44 Kevin Crocker 46:01, 49 Cathy Parkinson 46:44.
Torbay Velopark parkrun – 1 Andrew Gunther 18.00, 10 Jon Glasser 19.53, 12 Gary Burman 19.57, 14 Naomi Flanagan 20.26, 22 Mark France 21.49, 123 Jo Coish 29.43, 153 Richard Rollings 31.45, 191 Angela Allen 36.53, 218 Samantha Froggatt 43.18.
For the second week in a row many races across the country were cancelled due to the weather with this time Storm Dennis taking it’s toll on the sporting community. Perhaps with a degree of foresight Gary Burman escaped to sunnier climes to take on the Castellon 10k on the Mediterranean coast of Spain. The 10k was part of the wider weekend marathon festival with a particular highlight being the beer and pizza provided at the finish line. Gary completed a solid a run with a chip time of 42.02 and coming in 243rd.
Torbay Velopark parkrun – 12 Matthew Aplin 20.05, 13 Jerry Hocking 20.06, 21 Naomi Flanagan 20.42, 33 Mark France 21.54, 36 Simon Johnson 22.01, 63 Stephen Wilbraham 23.23, 70 Mark Maslin 23.47, 96 Jason Wyatt 25.31, 138 Amanda Francis 27.58, 185 Samantha Froggatt 32.06, 196 Richard Rollings 33.22.
Coventry parkrun – 479 Angela Allen 37.51.
With Storm Ciara approaching the UK many races were cancelled across the country for Sunday 9th February. This included one of the two races at the Exeter Half Marathon which unfortunately was unable to be take place on the Sunday due to the amber weather warning in force. Fortunately for those booked to race on Saturday the weather was still calm and race took place along the flat and traffic free routes of the paths along the River Exe and Exeter Canal. An ideal race for those wanting to test their fitness and see how their spring marathon training is going, the popular races have sold out for the last few years. Paul Whitehead having PB’d a 10k at the same location only a few weeks earlier continued his recent excellent form and went sub 1.30 for the first time. In a very competitive field with a winning time of 1.11.43 for the 13.1 mile race, Paul paced his run perfectly with consistent splits throughout and earned a throughly deserved 56th place in a time of 1.29.15.
Torbay Velopark parkrun – 10 Naomi Flanagan 20.06, 14 Mark Colombini 20.38, 22 Mark France 21.25, 86 Peter Coish 24.50, 108 Naoko McKinnon 26.06, 114 Amanda Francis 26.23, 262 Angela Allen 36.10, 295 Paul Carthy 39.19.
Wotton parkrun – 6 Gary Burman 22.49.
Clair parkrun – 51 Rachel Longthorpe 25.05.
Telford parkrun – 504 Richard Rollings 35.15.
Roosevelt Islam DC parkrun 🇺🇸 – 3 Andrew Longthorpe 20.16
Torbay Tri CLub is pleased to announce that it has recently been awarded the TriMark Club Bronze Accreditation by British Triathlon. The award which is assessed against a strict criteria laid down by British Triathlon highlights the work Torbay Tri Club has made as an improving and evolving club to conform with the national standards and best practice. A considerable amount of work by Lead Coach Jon Parkinson, Chairman Simon Mills and the rest of the committee has been completed to achieve the award by ensuring that all the appropriate policies are in place for coaching and safeguarding. Torbay Tri Club is continuing to grow with new members regularly joining, which shows the continued enthusiasm for triathlon within Torbay and the surrounding areas. The award also demonstrates the openness to all abilities within the club as well as conforming with the British Triathlon equity policy. The club will now begin working towards the next stage of the TriMark awards with continued improvements.
Further details about the TriMark award accreditation can be found here: TriMark Award
For an early season marathon Steve Donnelly did not shy away from entering a tough one. The Portland Coastal Marathon is certainly that with its rugged coastline, dramatic views and an elevation profile that would put most people off. Having to also carry the mandatory kit puts into perspective the hazardous nature of trail racing on the coast path especially in the winter. Steve described the race as “very windy, hilly and muddy”, but despite this Steve had an incredible race finishing in 11th position with a chip time of 4.14.52.
Newquay Road Runners hosted it’s annual 10k road race which has been a firm fixture on the local running calendar since 1987. Forming part of the Cornwall Grand Prix series nearly 800 competitors arrived at Newquay sports centre ready for the fast and flattish race with just a couple of hills thrown in for good measure. The sole entrant for Torbay Tri Club was Becky George who had a strong race finishing in 433rd position and well within the hour with a time of 56.31.
Torbay Velopark parkrun – 3 Darren Francis 17.52, 74 Mark Maslin 24.29, 109 Naoko McKinnon 25.44, 150 Jed Kay 27.58, 160 Natalie Tidball 28.45, 169 Jo Coish 29.17, 192 Amanda Francis 30.04, 207 Richard Rollings 31.06, 284 Angela Allen 37.30.
Teignmouth Promenade parkrun – 21 Frank Reay 21.23.
Haldon Forest parkrun – 69 Elsie Chadd 27.04.
Princes parkrun, Liverpool – 132 Jenny Hourigan 24.00.
South of the equator and on the other side of the world Cassandra Harrison tackled the Kingston Australia Day Swim in Tasmania. Despite the relatively mild 17° water temperature the swim was not for the faint hearted following a white shark sighting at Kingston Beach only two weeks ago. With the race briefing even containing a ‘what to do if a shark is seen’ instruction, arguably the swim paces may have been pushed a little harder than normal by some athletes. Cassandra swam in the longer of the two distances and completed the 1500m course in an excellent time of 29.46 coming 11th in her age group.
The first edition of the Exeter Epic Trail 10k lived up to its name with a 10k race around the beautiful surroundings of Haldon Forest. With entries of 1000+ runners the race did not disappoint with the as promised epic hills, ensuring the runners had a tough but enjoyable run. Four members accepted the challenge with notable performances by Cathy Parkinson claiming 1st female vet 50 and a strong run by Matt Aplin coming 4th in his 40-49 age group. 24 Matt Aplin 43.23, 106 (1st FV50) 48.45, 209 Paul Carthy 51.19, 569 Charlie Harris 59.09.
Torbay Velopark parkrun – 12 Jon Glasser 19.41, 14 Hans Edwards 19.47, 19 Mark Colombini 20.15, 51 Mark Maslin 22.38, 87 Peter Coish 25.03, 102 Amanda Francis 26.06, 156 Jo Coish 29.17, 208 Richard Rollings, 287 Ben Gerrish 38.13.
Killerton parkrun – 12 Jerry Hocking 21.11.
Coventry parkrun – 820 Angela Allen 38.05.
On a frosty morning in Exeter local club runners lined up for the First Chance 10k for one of the first 10k tests of 2020. With a couple of weeks of post Christmas training in their legs Torbay Tri Club fielded a strong presence at the sell out race with 20 members lining up on the start. Described as a fast and flat race around Exeter Riverside Valley Park the amended course to previous years did little to deter the runners with several members achieving PB’s. 10 (3rd MV40) Lee Turner 34.38, 24 Jason Hurford 36.19, 28 Dave Brown 37.25, 43 (3rd MV50) Darren Francis 37.49, 64 Paul Whitehead 39.09, 109 Gary Burman 42.18, 114 Tom Hutton 42.24, 117 Naomi Flanagan 42.42, 141 Ian McClean 44.02, 172 (1st FV50) Jo Loten 45.40, 203 Simon Loten 47.15, 243 Bobby Singh 49.19, 280 Mark Tidball 51.16, 312 Katie Hutton 52.49, 323 (2nd FV60) Naoko McKinnon 53.14, 329 Howard Brugge 53.10, 336 Charlie Harris 53.52, 347 Amanda Francis 54.19, 415 Natalie Tidball 58.09, 435 Jo Coish 59.49.
In Chepstow Kevin Woodard lined up for another fast and flat race at the Speedway 10k. The two lap race lives by the mantra ‘go hard or go home’ and aims to help push runners to achieve their potential by racing with similar abilities and improving their times. In a very strong and competitive field it lived up to the promise of exceptionally quick times. The concept certainly worked with Kevin achieving a 10k PB and coming 63rd in 34.07.
Parke parkrun – 6 Jerry Hocking 22.06.
Lanhydrock parkrun – 142 Samantha Froggatt 35.12.
Dawlish Coasters were the hosts of the popular local race Oh My Obelisk!, in what is the Coaster’s 25th anniversary year. With two distances to choose from, athletes were guaranteed mud and hills aplenty on both the 13.1 mile half marathon course and the 9 mile course. The multi terrain course has a mix of fields, woodland and and country lanes along with the stunning views as the runners climb to the Mamhead Obelisk from Dawlish before heading back. The course is not to be underestimated and is a real test of the legs and even has a few fallen trees to contend with. It’s certainly fair to say the runners all produced excellent results.
Half Marathon – 6 (1st VM50) Darren Francis 1.34.00, 116 Rachel Longthorpe 2.13.43, 131 Jason Wyatt 2.19.55, 158 Davina Cull 2.26.23.
9 Mile – 5 (2nd VM40) Jerry Hocking 1.10.16, 72 Amanda Francis 1.41..43
Torbay Velopark parkrun – 3 Matthew Aplin 19.18, 6 Ben Gerrish 19.44, 12 Naomi Flanagan 20.28, 13 Jon Glasser 20.35, 35 Helen Mackie 22.18, 217 Natalie Tidball 32.12, 228 Richard Rollings 32.51.
Teignmouth Promenade parkrun – 20 Frank Reay 21.27, 25 Jerry Butcher 21.55.
Haldon Forest parkrun – 159 Samantha Froggatt 35.00.
Exmouth parkrun – 47 Cathy Parkinson 22.06.
Netley Abbey parkrun – 168 Mark Maslin 28.48.
The annual Stoke Stampede in the small Somerset village of Stoke St Gregory may have started as a fun race between rival pubs in the village but has since grown to be a firm favourite for an early January test. With limited entries the race attracts many serious runners as well as beginners and sells out quickly every year. Taking place predominantly on small, undulating country lanes, it passes supporters in the village centre twice ensuring the athletes have plenty of encouragement as they race. In fine form Ian Tyson won the race with Kevin Woodard continuing on his recent good times coming third. 1 Ian Tyson 33.58, 3 Kevin Woodard 34.19.
Closer to home Exeter hosted the New Year 5, a 5 mile race on what is described as ‘pancake’ flat on laps of Exwick Playing Fields. Ideal for those hunting elusive PB’s and also those who may have started running as part of a New Year resolution. Four athletes from Torbay Tri all had excellent results with none of the athletes outside the top three for their respective age category. 10 (2nd M35+) Dave Brown 29.30, 35 (3rd M55+) Frank Reay 34.55, 41 (2nd M45+) Tom Hutton 35.14, 44 (1st F50+) Cathy Parkinson 35.49.
Torbay Velopark parkrun – 10 Matthew Aplin 19.16, 11 Naomi Flanagan 19.34, 13 Hans Edwards 20.16, 24 Stephen Wilbraham 21.19, 33 Glynn Hughes 22.03, 41 Mark Maslin 22.39, 89 Howard Brugge 24.48, 114 Julyan Bayes 25.37, 116 Naoko McKinnon 25.42, 161 Jed Kay 28.30, 188 Charlie Harris 29.41, 216 Natalie Tidball 31.22, 228 Richard Rollings 32.23.
Teignmouth parkrun – 20 Frank Reay 22.00.
Parke parkrun – 3 Darren Francis 20.17, 94 Amanda Francis 31.47.
Haldon Forest parkrun – 64 Davina Cull 27.24.
Exeter Riverside parkrun – 21 Gary Burman 20.22.
Exmouth parkrun – 76 Urszula Donigiewicz 23.14.
Bath Skyline parkrun – 23 Shaun McKernan 21.06.
Croxteth Hall parkrun – 119 Jenny Hourigan 25.06.
Torbay Velopark parkrun – 1 Dave Brown 17.22, 11 Naomi Flanagan 19.31, 14 Paul Whitehead 19.56, 17 Frank Reay 20.30, 23 Hans Edwards 20.46, 27 Gary Burman 21.02, 31 Stephen Wilbraham 21.29, 45 Glynn Hughes 22.26, 58 Bobby Singh 23.05, 63 Jason Wyatt 23.14, 86 Cathy Parkinson 24.34, 99 Charlie Harris 25.22, 135 David Hewet 27.10, 235 Richard Rollings 33.33, 301 Naoko McKinnon 57.31.
Exmouth parkrun – 111 Stephen Wilbraham 22.42, 257 Howard Brugge 26.17, 296 Nicholas Cull 27.18, 301 Davina Cull 27.25.
Haldon Forest parkrun – 7 Kevin Woodard 18.36, 16 Darren Francis 19.17, 342 Nicholas Cull 29.05, 365 Howard Brugge 29.29, 368 Davina Cull 29.33, 381 Amanda Francis 30.09.
Killerton parkrun – 3 Darren Francis 20.10, 22 Paul Whitehead 22.51, 26 Gary Burman 23.03, 126 Amanda Francis 29.47.