Club news

Loch Ness, Bristol, Barnstaple and more!

It’s been a very busy week for ORC members with races in many different venues including Loch Ness, Bristol, Barnstaple, Bovey Tracey and Newton Abbot. The annual 5k handicap race was held on Thursday in Simmons Park, which followed the course used on monthly Run in the Park. The race saw an extremely tight finish with Christine Fritsch getting to within 5 seconds of Kerry Morashti who led from start to finish, putting in an excellent sprint over the last 20m. Third in was George Haskell who overtook a good number of runners and the fastest over the course was Matt Pitson.

Coe has been very busy over the last few months preparing for autumn marathons and the first two of these were held this weekend. Geoff Hill had the furthest journey travelling up to the Scottish Highlands to take part in the Loch Ness Marathon. The route began near Fort Augustus and continued through breath taking scenery, going along the south-eastern shores of Loch Ness (Nessie was not seen!), across the River Ness, and into the centre of Inverness, capital city of the Highlands, for the finish. This was Geoff’s first marathon and he thoroughly enjoyed the experience despite getting cramp for part of the route. He finished the course in a very good time of 3:41:50.

The second marathon was much closer to home in Barnstaple. The race course was fairly flat, some of it along the Tarka Trail. Four ORCs took part and they found the route a little windy in places. However, all finished the race with very good times. Rob Kelly was the first ORC to finish in 3:08, followed by Roger Voaden in 3:12, Paul Carter in 3:16 and Andy Vallance in 3.20, who did particularly well as his preparation was severely hampered by an injury (not to mention carrying a fellow competitor for a mile to an ambulance!). Also at Barnstaple was a half marathon which was entered by three ORC ladies who all had a good race. First home was Jackie Dawes in a personal best of 1:52:36, followed by Claire Stanbury in 1:56:19, also a personal best and Lucy Brint finished in 2:10:14.

A second half marathon race was the Great Bristol. Stuart May, Becca Ewing and Jason Ewing travelled to Bristol to take part in the most recent addition to the Great Run Series, with over 10,000 other runners. All three produced very good times. Stuart ran strongly to finish in 1:35:21 while Jason and his wife Becca matched each other well, both finishing in 1:42:16, which was a personal best for Becca.

Sarah Marvin went to Newton Abbot for the ladies’ 10k race which followed a scenic route along undulating, quiet rural lanes. It was Sarah’s first 10k; in fact it was her first road race ever, having previous experience on the track. She thoroughly enjoyed it, finding the marshals hugely friendly and supportive and finished 16th overall in a great time of 46:37.

Christine Fritsch decided that after taking part in the challenging 8 mile Bude Pirate Run a couple of weeks ago she would like to try the Bovey Beauty. This is a 10 mile fell race including 560m of climbing over tough and hilly terrain, through some of the most rugged and remote areas of the East Dartmoor National Nature Reserve. Also taking part were Rob Hicks and Paul Crease. Rob had a storming run finishing second overall and he won the senior male group with a time of 1:22:26. Paul had a great run finishing fourth overall and third in the M40 age group in 1:26:24. Christine also had a good run finishing in 2:09:59.

Many thanks to Mags for the run report

Run Exe, Sourton Tors & More

It has been a very busy week for ORC! On Tuesday Stuart May took part in the final round of the Run Exe 5k series. There are six races in the series but runners only need to complete four and their times are then added together to work out overall winners and age category places. Having completed the required four races, Stuart was pleased to find he had come third in the MV45 age category with a total time for the runs of 79min 32secs.

Wednesday saw a beautiful late summer’s evening, when the last of our Summer Series races took place. The Sourton Tor race is a traditional up and back fell race starting from the Bearslake Inn near Sourton, where the runners ascend over 300m over open moorland to the top of Sourton Tor. On a windy, but lovely evening, the runners barely had time to appreciate the stunning sunset from the top, before the fast downhill descent on the other side of the valley to complete the 2.6 miles of the race. First home was Toby Chapman, who had travelled from Taunton to run, finishing in 21.29, four seconds ahead of last year’s winner, James Best, despite going well off course after reaching the summit of the Tor. Greg Millar was the first ORC home in 28.38 with Jo-Anne Turner and Alison Holiday finishing together in 38.51 to jointly claim the Third Lady prize.

The following evening four ORCs took to the streets of Exeter to run the Michelmores Charity 5k Run. This race is now in its 17th year and the charity they were raising money for this year was Balloons, who support bereaved children and their families in the south west. The conditions were very hot but this did not stop Jackie Dawes from running a great race to finish with a new PB of 25.39. Next home was Molly Bell in 27.48, followed by Jane Richardson in 30.50 and Sarah Bell in 36.54.

Sunday saw a good turnout of ORCs at the Bude Pirate Run with seven members taking part. This off road 8miler incorporates the course of the old Mouth to Mouth Race, but with added milage as it now starts and finishes near Crooklets Beach in Bude. The runners head north, initially on the coast path, before turning off inland towards Stowe Barton and Coombe Woods, after which a short stretch on the road brings them to the coast at Duckpool, where they take the coast path back to Bude. With the exception of the dip down to Northcott Mouth, followed by the dreaded steps up again, the first three miles are entirely uphill, but the steepest climbs are on the coast path on the return leg of the run, where all but the fittest are reduced to a walk. On such a beautiful day, with the stunning views along the coastline, it would be hard not to enjoy this tough run. Hugh Robinson was the first ORC to finish with a good run in 1.05.40 to come 11th overall, followed by John Binns in 1.20.00. Charlotte Radnor was the first lady ORC home in 1.22.05, with Jane Jackson next in 1.23.38, Christine Fristch in 1.31.38, Katy Speak in 1.33.38 and Mags Jarvis in 1.35.12.

Many thanks to Jane for the run report

Treggy 7

There was a good turnout of ORCs at the Treggy 7 on Sunday, hosted by Launceston Road Runners. This is a tough 7 miler that starts in Launceston Town Square and heads downhill out of the town onto undulating rural roads. There is a steep half mile climb in the middle of the race to the village of Tregadillet before following a mainly downhill course again, with the finish of the race in the grounds of Launceston Castle. Despite its reputation for being a tough race, it is always popular, and this year there were nearly 450 runners taking part.

First ORC home was Chris Fullford-Brown in 1.02.47 with first ORC lady, Claire Stanbury, coming in next in 1.05.04. Other ORC times were; Katy Speak; 1.05.33, Ged Fitzgibbon; 1.05.37, Danielle Fullford-Brown; 1.07.38, Molly Bell; 1.09.00, Lora Medland; 1.17.47, Angela Hatten; 1.17.47, Ruth Bushell; 1.18.58, Janet White; 1.20.46, Jessica Corcoran; 1.22.35, Claire Sprague; 1.25.08, Sarah Bell; 1.25.28.

Many thanks to Jane for the run report.

Oke Croak! and Haldon Forest Flyer

The third race of our summer series took place in hot, sunny conditions last Sunday. At over 10 miles, the Oke Croak is the longest and toughest of all four of the races with 2,000 feet of ascent over open moorland. Starting in Simmons Park the runners follow the River Okement via Ball Cleave and Chapel Ford out to the moors. After taking the “Goat’s Track” up to Oke Tor and passing through the stone arch, they head for East Mill Tor before climbing to the top of Yes Tor. From there it is all downhill past the Army Camp and back to Simmons Park. There was a good entry of visiting runners from as far afield as Derbyshire and Wales, with an international flavour being added with runners from France and even Australia.

The winner of the race was Pete Devenport of Bude Rats with a terrific run in 1.18.49, just 20 seconds outside the course record. A new female course record was set by Lizzy Dyson of Haldon Trail Runners whose finishing time of 1.25.09 knocked two minutes off the previous record. First home of the four ORC’s that took part was Rob Hicks, coming 7th overall, in 1.25.21, followed by Chris Turner in 1.33.20, Greg Miller in 2.01.58 and Christine Fritsch in 2.20.35.

On Friday evening, Okehampton runner Roger Voaden, slotted a quick five miles at the Haldon Forest Flyer into his marathon training schedule. This is one of the Dawlish Coasters’ races and is completely off road through the forest tracks, paths and fire roads of Haldon Forest Park. Roger finished in a good time of 32mins 04secs to come 10th overall.

Many thanks to Jane for the run report