Dart to Dart, Bideford 10, Drogo 10 & More!

It was a busy weekend of racing for ORC this week which started with a night time race on Friday evening. Always looking for new challenges, Christine Fritsch took part in the Dart to Dart, the first of the Wild Night Run series of races. These are run on a mix of trails, paths and some road with runners using head torches to see by, although the route is marked with arrows and flashing lights. With a choice of a 5.5 mile, or an 8.5 mile course Christine chose the longer one, which turned out to be 9.5 miles after a course change. This was Christine’s first experience of night races and on a cold but clear night she thoroughly enjoyed the peacefulness and solitude of it, finishing in 1.54.07.

The Bideford 10 Miler was the focus for most of the club’s members on Sunday with a huge turnout of 30 runners. Regarded as a fast, flat race with great personal best potential, the course takes runners out by road to Yelland and returns along the Tarka Trail. Being a coastal course, the possibility of a PB can be influenced by the weather on the day, but this year the gusty wind was from a favourable direction, behind the runners on the homeward stretch. First ORC home was Robert Kelly, continuing his excellent season of races with a great run and a PB in 1.00.45, to come 14th overall and followed by yet another terrific run from Roger Voaden in 1.01.11 to take second MV50. Third home was Andy Vallance in 1.01.37. ORCs ladies were headed by Katie Littlejohns with another PB in 1.13.09, winning the senior ladies category and bettering her own club record at the distance by 5 minutes. Second lady ORC home was Charlotte Radnor in 1.23.03 and third was Jo-Anne Turner with another PB in 1.17.56. The ladies were definitely on form with Katie, Charlotte and Claire Stanbury (1.24.38. PB) taking the first Senior Ladies Team prize and Jackie Dawes setting a new club age group record. Seventeen ORCs clocked new PB’s and several were running this distance for the first time, including Jane Richardson, setting herself a new challenge at the age of 67!

Other ORC times; Chris Turner; 1.04.28. PB, Stuart May; 1.09.17 PB, Jean-Paul Quertier; 1.11.33, Jason Ewing; 1.14.29. PB, John Binns; 1.19.34, Mike Westland 1.20.18, Jackie Dawes; 1.22.30. PB, Chris Fullford-Brown; 1.24.23, Graham Bryant; 1.26.42, Lucy Brint; 1.30.38. PB, Anne Binns; 1.30.42, Nicola Smith; 1.31.32. PB, Caroline Wilson; 1.33.36. PB, Joanne Burrow; 1.38.05.PB, Rachael Haydon; 1.38.05. PB, Emma Kellerher; 1.42.04, Janet White; 1.46.29, Ruth Bushell; 1.49.12. PB, Jane Richardson 1.50.36. PB, Jessica Corcoran; 1.50.56, Angela Hatten; 1.50.56. PB, Claire Sprague; 1.53.37. Sarah Bell; 1.55.34. PB.

Another popular local race, the Drogo 10, unfortunately clashed with the Bideford 10 this year. Normally held later in the month, the Drogo 10 offers about 9.5miles of hilly trails through the grounds of Castle Drogo and Fingle Woods. The good autumn weather has left the normally muddy paths in an unusually dry condition, but with the trees still showing spectacular colours, the runners had plenty to distract them from the pain of the infamous Hunter’s Path hill. Five ORCs took part this year with Pete Devenport giving an outstanding performance to finish fifth overall in 1.03.40, followed by Geoff Hill also running well in 1.11.07. Next was Jeremy Tandy who clocked 1.15.11 and Matt Bailey 1.15.43, with Alan Luffingham completing in 1.54.26.

Just two ORCs chose a different ten mile race to try. Carole Cornwall and Katy Speak ran the Templar Ten, a multi terrain course through the grounds of Stover School and the beautiful Stover Country Park, finishing together in 1hr 46mins.

Further afield, Mags took part in the Age UK Leeds Abby Dash. With many
international runners and an entry of over 9,000 this is one of the most well known and fastest 10k road races in the country. In very cold and windy conditions, Mags did extremely well to finish in 55.43, gaining a diamond award.

Many thanks to Jane for the run report