Weekly media reports

Note that the "year" starts in November so these can be used as a reminder when nominating recipients for awards presented at the Christmas dinner.

14th August

Clare Hansford travelled to Swanage to compete in the standard distance triathlon at this well organised and beautifully positioned event. In a field of 170 competitors Clare was very pleased to finish 71st overall, 8th lady and 1st V50 in her second attempt at this distance. The 1500m swim in a calm Swanage bay took 30:54, an undulating 40km bike 1:21:19, and a stunning but brutal 10km run up Purbeck ridge in 51:22 gave Clare a finishing time of 2:46:21.

Three AVR’s contested the 5-mile Shaves Cross mini marathon, a scenic mixed terrain race in the Marshwood Vale including a nice ascent up to the foot of Pilsdon Pen with a dash on undulating ground to finish. Kevin Feeney was the first AVR home in 41:39 followed by David Cooke 43:00 and Sarah Shepley 46:35.

On Saturday AVR Graham Newton ran the Horseshoe Sticklepath race, a self-navigating route across the high moorland of Dartmoor, crossing rough unmarked terrain with a climb of 1700 feet.  Graham, knowing his propensity for getting lost on even the most well marked runs, was a little apprehensive to say the least, but decided that as good weather was forecast, he would give it a go. He ran at quite a speedy pace, mainly in a bid to keep up with the runners who knew the way, thus precluding any need to alert the emergency services.  He was pleased, and more than a little relieved, to finish as first over 65 in 1:44:48, 22nd overall.  The race was won for a fourth time by another AVR, Tim Lenton, in an amazing 1:17:22.

7th August

Kelly Stamp had a real difficult time at the off-road Dorset invader marathon. All was going well in sunshine then at 10 miles the heavens opened and at mile 14 she twisted her already injured knee. To say things got progressively worse is an understatement, but bravely Kelly carried on and hobbled over the line soaking wet and in agony in 6hrs 33 mins, but still not last at 216/290.

Only the hardy or daft would have turned out to run the Haselbury Trail 10k on a very wet and windy Wednesday evening. John Blackledge and Eleanor Wood had nothing better to do, so they ran. The winner was Chris McMillan of Weston AC in 37:05. John, who is back to great form, had not run this race for 10 years and was delighted to have performed so well getting a brilliant time of 45:16 in 19th place. Eleanor was happy to be first Lady in 51:40, 52nd winning a lovely piece of Ham-stone rock and a cheeky bottle of wine. Thanks to Crewkerne Running Club for such a great race attracting 148 runners.

The weather was much better on Sunday for the Jurassic 10k and half Marathon both run from West Bay. This is not a run for the faint hearted considering you have to go up Thorncombe Beacon (twice for the Half marathoners).  AVR had four runners, two in the 10k: Ben Croad in his first ever race, and Henry Smith. Both boys really enjoyed the challenge and finished in 1hr 05 and 1hr 20 respectively. Clare Hansford ran her socks off putting in a strong and fast pace, her reward being 2nd lady and first vet. home in a time of 1:56:10, winning a lovely painting ( and an ice cream from her friends). Eleanor Wood came home in 2:3:45. This is definitely a race to put in the calendar, it is testing and beautiful with much support around the course. Well done and thank you Bridport Running Club.

Off road runs on Dartmoor are very varied - you just never know what you're going to get. Having to run in the very muddy, hilly terrain can be quite challenging but the many runs in the National Park can be quite unique. Graham Newton ran the 6 Moor Miles race starting at Yelverton, a very scenic undulating route taking in a climb up and over Hound Tor. Graham finished in 52:07 and was 2nd in the MV60 category.

Not content with that, Graham also ran the Totnes 10k, a fairly flat popular route with nearly 500 runners taking part. Graham was pleased to finish in 49:56, 1st MV65. Graham's wife, Diane also raced at Totnes after a lengthy lay-off due to injury and ran the race of her life finishing with an amazing sprint over the last 200 metres coming in at 1:16:58.

24th July

There was a wonderful turn out of both juniors and seniors on a glorious summer's evening for the annual Race the Tram event. There were 5 junior teams who started from Colyton and linked up with seniors at Colyford, and one senior super team. Teams were colour coded with batons. In first place in a time of 13:27 was the tram (bother!). Exactly 2 minutes behind was the Gold team (Matt Clist, Matt Hewer, Chet Gillespie and John Blackledge). 2^nd equal in 19:23 were the Silver and Black teams. 4th was the Green team in 19:54, 5th the Pink team in 20:01 and the final team was the Plastic Green team in 20:35. As a reward to all the runners, there was a BBQ expertly cooked by Paul Tolchard, Rick Wood and Dave Thomas and drinks on the beach.

The AVR junior awards were given out after the BBQ with the winners as follows: Male Runner: Joint award to Ethan Huntley & Lewis Burridge, Female Runner: Joint award to Caitlin Smith & Poppy Tooze, Most Improved Male Runner: Harvey Burrough, Most Improved Girl Runner: Maddie Carter, Lollipop Award: Erin Ellis, Most Committed Awards: Holly Eyre, Same Eyre, Elsa Wood, Cameron Board, Parkrun Awards: Rosie Kendall / Harry McMahon, Junior Coaching Award: Matt Thurgood. The evening ended with mass swimming (mostly juniors!) and fun. Thank you to Seaton Tramway and drivers who gave up their time voluntarily and best of all the money raised will be donated to the Devon Air Ambulance.

There was great success for AVR at the Dalwood Fayre 10K on Saturday with Jake Smith winning in 37:11; Matt Clist 2nd, 39:15 and Chet Gillespie 3^rd plus Eleanor Wood 1^st lady, 14^th overall in 44:25. Terry Emmett was 5th, 45:39; 51:32; Richard Jackson 20th, 55:58; Andrew Hartnell 25th, 59:03; Kevin Feeney 26th, 59:13, 1^st over 60 male and Sandra Mortimer 33rd, 1:09:58;

17th July

Ethan and Jon Day completed their first Triathlon at The Honiton Triathlon; it was a Sprint Distance of 400m pool swim, 12 mile bike finishing with a 3 mile multi-terrain run. Ethan again had a great swim gaining 2 mins on Dad Jon, but then badly cramped up in the run due to the heat, which Jon took advantage of and hobbled past him. Jon's times: swim 9:40:4 bike 39:20:8 run 20:45:3 finishing 45 out of 201. Ethan's times: swim 7:45:1 bike 40:19:3 run 24:21:3, 66^th overall. Amy Greenhalgh was a superb 25^th overall and in his 1^st Triathlon Terry Emmett produced a 10:52 swim, 40:40 bike and 19:27 run. Many thanks to Pure Endurance for organising a brilliant event, and for all their help, training and advice.

The mists hovered above Haytor on Dartmoor until after the end of the Haytor Heller 10k run on Saturday evening. The race with 275 runners was won by Notfast RC's Adam Holland in 42:20. Tim Lenton raced home 6th in 44:47 winning the 2nd MV40 prize. Graham Newton won the MV60 prize in 72nd spot taking 57:01. The third AVR runner was Eleanor Wood who finished 89th in 59:30 winning the FV60 prize. Many thanks to Teignbridge Trotters for putting on an excellent race.

Clare Hansford travelled to Weymouth to compete in her first triathlon, a classic distance event of 1500m sea swim, 40 km cycle and 10 km run organised by Bustinskin events. A mass start of 122 competitors for the swim meant for a brutal start, but clearer water eventually led to a time of 28:44 min for this phase. The undulating out and back bike course took 1 hour 17 min, and on very tired legs with temperatures rising the run took an exhausting 49.17 min. Clare was pleased to finish 51st overall, 10th lady and 1st vet 50 in 2:37:15.

10th July

Australia is a long way to go just to run a 10K race, but that is exactly what Duncan Staddon did. On Sunday he ran the Sydney Harbour 10K which was a stunning location for a run with the beautiful Sydney Harbour as a backdrop. Conditions were perfect and Duncan managed to complete in 36:38, 92nd out of 3,653 runners – a great effort.

3 AVR’s undertook the Ham to Lyme ultra marathon a distance of 50 K on a hot day. There were many great feed stations and the course went 30 miles from ham hill along the liberty trail. It was fantastic scenery running through corn fields and farms, but Lyme sea front finish was a welcome relief. Kelly Stamp ran with a Honiton chap who arranged a fuel bus. They had to lend a man a pair of trainers at 20 miles as the poor chaps soles of his trainers had fallen off and he had been running 15 miles with socks over his shoes; but finished due to the replacement trainers. Kelly completed in in 6:.44 with James and Tim Sibley finishing together in 7:22.

A team of four AVR’s made the trip down to Ivybridge on Friday night to take on The Erme Valley Relays what has become known as the premier road relay event in the county. Without doubt the highlight of the evening was Jake Smith returning to form by running the fastest leg of the night out of all the high-class runners that were there. The team finished fourth which was an incredible achievement and once again shows the strength within the club. A late change to the original team needed to be made as James Green had to pull out with a twisted ankle. Therefore, one of the age old amateur sports conundrums needed to be resolved, who is the quickest runner that’s available and can drive? The ‘selectors’ therefore gave Matt Hewer the call up. The Friday evening traffic meant that the team only arrived 15 minutes before the start of the race and this may have made a real difference to the result. The team had hoped to run the 2.5 mile route beforehand just to acclimatise themselves to the course. Matt didn’t have the luxury and had to run the first leg with a minimal warm up and unaware that it was a tough hilly course. The splits for the legs were as follows, Matt Hewer 14:59, Matt Clist 13:13, Simon Davis 13.21 and Jake Smith 12:27, total time for 10 miles of 54 minutes.  Overall 122 teams where entered in the event.

10 AVRs completed the Dartmoor 600 Challenge on Sunday, visiting all five tops on the moor over 600m in height (that's about 2,000 for us oldies!). It was a tad hot at the start but good once it clouded over, and conditions underfoot were perfect. The merry band of Garry Perratt, Eleanor Wood, Clare Hansford, Karl & Fran Hodson, Matt Clist, Paul Johns, Graham Newton, Patrick Devine-Wright and Tim Lenton started from near the Dartmoor Inn at Lydford, took a detour to avoid being shot (run leader Garry Perratt having assumed no firing on the ranges at the weekend so hadn't checked!) and got back on track to reach the first peak at Cut Hill (the point on the moor most remote from habitation). Tim and Patrick took a direct route to Whitehorse and Hangingstone Hills while the rest took a less direct but supposedly more runnable route (which it wasn't!). Tim and Patrick then pushed on ahead to High Willhayes (the highest point on the moor) and Yes Tor and back to the starting point in 3:45. The rest followed at a “moor” leisurely pace including sitting with legs in the East Okement above Meldon Reservoir for a while and detouring to Sourton Tor (because Garry said it was a nice spot) and finished in about 5 hours. A jolly day out was had by all.

Working at the London Stadium, Carol Austin took the chance to add Hackey Marshes parkrun to her list of parkruns completed. It is a lovely out and back course with stunning views back across to Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park. Carol finished in 23:02, 1st W55.

Chris and Tom Perry travelled down to the SW corner of Dartmoor on Sunday to run the wonderful, low key Masanga Fell Race. This nearly 8 mile run has a proper fell race feel, with plenty of river crossings, bogs and tussocky off-road sections. The run heads out from Cadover Bridge, up via Legis Tor and then round to Shell Top and back via Trowlesworthy Tor. Chris and Tom finished in 1:12. The race is highly recommended and raises money for an Ebola Hospice in Sierra Leone. See http://axevalleyrunners.us15.list-manage.com/track/click?u=88f0654856da87b3b6e297ba9&id=977e851a07&e=0c4a2c3c41

On Saturday morning five AVRs took part in the 10th anniversary Otter Rail and River Run, a 10k multi terrain, part of the Tipton St John playing field’s 50th anniversary fair, it was opened by BBC presenter Jeremy Vine who later presented the awards to the prize winners. It was a hot, sunny run and Steven Lewis was the first AVR home 67th in 54:37 and first M65, followed by Angela Kerr 78^th, 56:08 and first F60. Chris Hill finished in 111^th, 60:05; Yvette Hill 123^rd, 61:32 and Martin Kerr 168^th, 69:06. Everyone received an engraved half pint glass as a commemorative memento which was filled up with Otter Bitter at the beer tent for those who wished to partake!

3rd July

The annual Woodland Relays between various East Devon clubs last week was a rather soggy affair on Woodbury Common. The course was lumpy, bumpy and wet. "AVR Very Young Men" Tom and Ben Perry were 2nd in the 3x1K junior race with Tom running twice due to the third team member dropping out at the last minute. They were beaten by boys much older than them so should be very proud of their performance. The 3x4K senior race was unsurprisingly won by N1 Tri Club (including AVR's Ollie Caute) who recorded the fastest three individual times but "AVR Young Men" Chris Keeffe, Matt Clist and Simon Davis did well to finish third, 4 minutes behind N1 but just 9s behind second-placed Sidmouth RC. "AVR Middle-Aged Men" Tim Sibley, Chris Perry and Garry Perratt finished 3 minutes later, 4th overall and first M40 team, and "AVR Old Men" Robert Kerr, David Cooke and Kevin Feeney 17th and first M60 team. Since many runners had left to dry out and warm up by the time of the prize-giving, Garry had to collect everyone's prizes for the N1, M40 and M60 teams. He assures us that he will pass on the 30 bottles of beer to their rightful recipients ... possibly ... maybe ... perhaps.

On a hot and sunny day 12 AVR’s went over to Charmouth to tackle an 8m fell race called the Charmouth Challenge up to Golden Cap, or 2 mile Fun Run. In the main race there were 337 runners, over 100 runners more than last year and it was won by Ranelagh Harriers' Richard Gregory in 51:38. Tim Lenton was first AVR home 12th in 59:32 followed by Eleanor Wood, 68th in 1:13:10 winning a bottle of local vodka as first vet 60. Next home was Alan Morbey 1:18:37, 125^th; Ian Clements 1:20:14, 140^th; David Jefferies 1:25:03, 187^th and Ragnhild Richards 1:27:01, 210^th. John Larcombe wearing his AVR vest back to front was 234^th, 1:30:26; Angela Kerr 237^th, 1:30:39 and husband Martin was 303rd in 1:44:21. In the Fun Run with 144 runners, AVR’s Chet Gillespie was overall winner in 11:23 winning a Challenge T shirt. Sam Eyre was 10^th, 13.22 and Madison Carter was 33rd in 16:35. Thanks to Charmouth Primary School for such a great event with a fete, stalls and a welcome cold wash down by the local fire service.

Matt Clist 2^nd in the Forde Abbey 10K in 40:51. Other AVR times were: John Blackledge 16th, 45:56; Matt Hewer 20th, 47:10; Eleanor Wood 55th, 52:27; Alan Morbey 64th, 54:50; Richard Jackson 73rd, 55:38; Steven Lewis 96th, 58:28; Andrew Harknell 107th, 1:00:10; Georgia Dommett 108th, 1:00:17; Canny Hart 115th, 1:01:26; Andrew Sayers 116th, 1:01:30; Paul Tolchard 129th, 1:05:17; David Cooke 132nd, 1:05:32; Mark Spraggs 133rd, 1:05:35; Yvette Hill 151st, 1:07:40; Robert Kerr 158th, 1:08:21; Amy Hillier 161st, 1:08:33; Janet Cullum 176th, 1:13:13; Lesley Adams 177th, 1:13:13;

25th June

The Lyme Regis 11k Poppy run attracted 47 runners including 11 from AVR. The winner in a storming 41:57 was Jake Smith a full seven minutes ahead of the next runner. In 3rd place was young Chet Gillespie, in 50:47 winning first local DT7 runner - both of them receiving handsome hampers. Clare Hansford was 5th and 2nd lady in 56:10, winning the first vet over 40 prize and she was delighted to have eaten her ice-cream before her son James finished! Eleanor Wood was 7th, 3rd lady in 56:50 and Tony Smith, close on her heels but lacking a final sprint finish, was 8th, 56:53. In 19th position still looking fresh was Ragnhild Richards in 66:18 followed by Steve Lewis 22nd, 67:57, Georgia Dommett 23rd, 68:51, Sam Miller 2^th, 70:49, Fiona Pyle 44th, 84:12 and Robert Kerr 47th, 85:27. This was a delightful location with good amenities and a well organised run. Thank you, Lyme Regis.

On Sunday North Devon Road Runners staged the ANOB Marathon and Half Marathon, a hilly coast path run starting and finishing in Woolacombe. The route takes in some of the UK's most outstandingly beautiful coast line, and includes a long strip of sandy beach, some rugged countryside and a stretch through the sand dunes. Graham Newton ran the half marathon in windy but cool conditions with a little rain to damp down the dust.  Graham ran well to finish as first Male Vet over 60 in a good time of 1:51:20.

Sunday was the 26th running of the Torbay half marathon: a two-lap undulating course from Paignton to Torquay. Six AVRs took part starting in grey and slightly blustery conditions which became briefly drizzly and finally quite sunny. First AVR home was Simon Davey in 1:46:14 (297th) followed by Carol Austin, in her first half after two years of injury, 1:53:14 (2nd W55, 465th), Angela Kerr 1:58:06 (3rd W60, 595th), Martin Kerr in 2:23:23 (1181st), Jess Chadwick in 2:25:34 (1235th) and Bec Davey in 2:33:44 (1323rd). The race medal and T shirt were well received by all and worn with pride for a celebratory coffee and cake.

19th June

Eight AVRs made the monthly pilgrimage to what is becoming the home of speed for the Yeovilton 5k series. The weather was hot and the thought of a warm up seemed a little unnecessary given the conditions were more suitable for sitting in a beer garden. Ollie Caute is still too young for all that so we had to join him and set a good example. The race was as usual was won in an incredibly quick time, Ronnie Richmond of Bideford in 15:10. Ollie was the first AVR home in 16:35, first junior for the second race in a row and a very impressive 9th overall. Ollie was left to stew on the age-old problem for most of us of going off far too quickly, he completed the first kilometre in 3:03! The rest of the results for AVR are as follows Luke Reed, 19th 17:57, Duncan Staddon 22nd  18:00, Matt Hewer 25th 18:10, Josh Hopson 38th 19:00, Chris Keefe 67th 21:24, Kelly Stamp 95th 24:08 and Ian Apps 101st 25:06.

Four AVRs ran the Killerton Parkrun on Saturday with the warm weather making for very fast conditions on the slightly undulating, off-road course. Garry Perratt turned in his fastest 5K this year, finishing 7th from 372 finishers in a very satisfying 18:36, a Killerton PB by 22s. Patrick Devine-Wright decided to run barefoot and reported that the grass was lovely but he couldn't run the gritty & stony descents very fast. But he still managed 9th in 19:25 - to read more about his barefoot run, see here. Young Tom Perry was 19th in 20:02 and even younger brother Ben 95th in 24:20.

Graham Newton decided to indulge in a spot of park run tourism while on holiday in Worthing. So for the first (and possibly the last) time he ran the 5k sprint along Worthing's promenade on what turned out to be one of the hottest days of the year.  Graham was very pleased with his time of 21:46 as the fastest over 65 male vet out of 380 runners.

Carol Austin and Lesley Adams were in Stockholm so took the chance for a spot of parkrun tourism. Haga parkrun takes place in a beautiful, green, hilly, park with lake views. Very different from Seaton!  Both won their age groups and Carol was second on age grade.

Thomas Whitworth won the Seaton parkrun in 18:11 with AVR’s John Blackledge 2^nd, 18:35 and Andrew Davies of Wimbledon 3^rd, 19:02. Phoebe Clark was the first female, 7^th overall, 20:12.

The warm weather certainly made conditions tough for any endurance events this weekend. Therefore the 349 people that ran in the Martock 10k on Sunday certainly deserved a visit to the Ice Cream van positioned conveniently 20 yards from the finish line. The race is all on road and in country lanes, the terrain is fairly flat with some small inclines which gives the potential for quick times. Ollie Caute excelled against a good quality field and finished 2^nd in 35:21, a fantastic result. The other AVR's came in as follows, Duncan Staddon 7^th, 37:48, Terry Emmett 12^th, 39:02, Matt Hewer 13^th, 39:23 and Josh Hopson 22^nd, 42:18. Overall some excellent results and the weather certainly effected the times however the real winner was the bloke 20 yards from the finish - £10.50 for 3 Ice Creams!

12th June

Rob Smyth won this weeks Seaton parkrun in 17:57 with AVR’s John Blackledge 2^nd, 18:46 and Matt Hewer 3^rd, 19:32. Eleanor Wood was the ladies winner, 13^th overall, 22:25. Meanwhile Keith Agland ran the Exeter Riverside parkrun finishing 71^st in 23:18.

Despite the howling gales CB Simpson won the June Senior handicap in 36:40, smashing his PB by nearly 2 mins. Alan Morbey was 2nd, 25:46 and Nicky Taylor 3rd, 34:08. Kelly Stamp leads the rankings with 105 points with David Cooke 2nd, 92 and Matt Hewer 3rd, 78.

After a five-year gap AVR resurrected the East Devon Way Relay last Sunday, a low-key 12-stage race following the 38-mile inland route from Exmouth to Uplyme then continuing another couple of miles down to Lyme Regis since it's nicer to finish a jolly day's running with beer, chips and ice-cream close at hand! First back was AVR's "Team Victorious" (who had no name so made that up at the finish!) of Chris Keeffe, Garry Perratt, Matt Clist and Tim Sibley who took 4:58, second were Tiverton Harriers 5:25 and third Ilfracombe RC roughly 5:40. Four other teams, including two more from AVR, also joined in the fun and while the total number of runners was a little lower than hoped for, the average "fun had per runner" was very high! A few runners took "scenic route diversions" (i.e. got lost!) but that did nothing to prevent smiles all round.

5th June

The 12th running of the Umborne Ug 10k race took place on Saturday at 6pm. There was a record turnout of runners from far and wide, including 39 from AVR - what amazing support, 13 from Honiton RC and 8 from Sidmouth RC. We all looked anxiously at the skies as the forecast was not good but the sun shone on us. The race was won by AVR's Tim Lenton in a strong 41:26. Next home was the ever impressive Matt Clist in 42:07 and 3rd was Haldon Trail Runner Matthew Menary, 42:57. The first lady home was AVR's Flo Swan who gallantly tried to break the ladies' course record but just missed out by 10 seconds with a time of 47:15. Second lady was South West Road Runner Nicky Savill 49:44 and 3rd was AVR's Clare Hansford who had cycled from Lyme and had a great time of 52:15. The Male Vet. prizes were all won by AVR's: M40+ Chris Perry 45:21, M50 Garry Perratt 43:35, 4th overall and M60 Graham Newton, despite a heavy fall in the woods 52:24. Two of the 3 Female vet. prizes were won by AVR's: F35 the ever improving Sue Hayes 56:57, F45 Margaret Pearce 58:37 after cycling over from Seaton and F55 was Honiton's Pippa Westall. Other AVR times were: Chet Gillespie 45:50,Terry Emmett, last year's winner coming back after injury 46:20, John Blackledge 48:57, Tim Sibley 51:40, Iain Horlock 51:54, Simon D'Albertanson 55:02, Mike Clark 55:22, Alan Morbey 56:24, Tony Smith 56:47, Steve Haines 56:50, Roger Bramley 57:30, Ian Clements 57:46, Richard Jackson 58:47, Andrew Hartnell 60:40, Kelly Stamp 60:39, Anna McLoughlin 61:43, Kevin Feeney 61:55, Steve Lewis 62:11, Nick Adams 64:19, Rachel Grant 64:57, Georgia Dommett 65:12, Sarah Herfet 66:07, Angela Kerr 67:00, Sam Miller 67:11, Richard Matthews 70:21, Henry Smith 72:27, Robert Kerr 74:25, Sandra Mortimer 75:33, Amie Sibley 75:33 and Martin Kerr 77:42. Thanks to the two AVR backmarkers Paul and Tess.

The Junior Fun Run 2.5k had 50 runners and was won by AVR's Tom Perry in 10:35, brother Ben Perry 10:45, Peter Johns 12:54. The 1st girl was AVR's Elsa Wood in 13:19, Caitlyn Sloman 2nd girl 13:51, Madison Carter 3^rd 15:16.

Thanks to backmarkers Kay and Sarah. Thanks also to all the marshals, water station helpers, and locals who served food and drinks afterwards, time keepers and recorders, landowners and the weather all made possible by Rick and Eleanor Wood.

29th May

161 runners completed the Seaton parkrun on Saturday with Jon Mansfield of Tewkesbury RC winning in 18:38 followed by AVR’s Terry Emmett, 18:24 and John Blackledge, 19:10. Phoebe Clark was the 1st female 6th overall, 20:25. Keith Agland and Karen Eyre ran the Killerton parkrun with Karen 53rd and Keith 68th.

Kelly Stamp ran her first marathon at the inaugural running of the Dorchester road marathon. She completed in 4hours 34, 361st out of 715 finishers and 36th female in age category. It was very well organised and mile 21 had a “lovestation” offering wet cuddles, beer and cider. It was very warm with a very beautiful scenic hilly route with 3 hills to finish.

Roger Bramley ran the Race The Tide trail run from Holbeton at 01:24pm precisely. The 16 mile route involves woodland trails before a river crossing at Erme Estuary, that had to be negotiated before the tide at 3pm. He ran steadily to achieve this before tackling some steep stretches of the SW Coast path. The route then headed inland again before finishing back through the Flete estate. With 629 metres of ascent, a few very deep muddy sections and humid conditions to contend with, Roger was very pleased to finish 42nd/252 finishers in 02:47.

50 years ago, in 1967, Kathrine Switzer paved the way for millions of women to take up marathon running either for fun or competitively by running the all male Boston Marathon. Although women had run marathons before, officially participation wasn’t allowed. To celebrate this, a brand new marathon, The Women Can Marathon, was staged on Sunday from Tipton St John playing fields. An off road route of varied terrain through woods and fields, and taking in the coastal path from Budleigh Salterton to Sidmouth making it a very scenic and challenging course. Four AVR ladies set off on the course, after Angela Kerr, one of the four, had motivated all the runners with a fun warm up to set them on their way in the sunshine. It was an amazing day of camaraderie, with fabulous marshals and plenty of refreshments on the course. Eleanor Wood was 8th out of 400 and 1st F60, and Angela Kerr, who was running her 30th marathon, was also awarded a prize for her third place in the same category. Anna Mcloughlin stormed home in her best ever marathon and Pippa Wyatt ran very well in her 1st marathon.  A very successful day all round showing that ‘we did’!

22nd May

Carol Austin and Lesley Adams indulged in some parkrun tourism on Saturday and enjoyed Congleton parkrun. Both came first in their age groups. Carol was 6th woman and Lesley 45th woman out of 234 runners

Graham and Diane Newton competed at Hereford's first Festival of Running, where there was a choice of distances ranging from 5K to a full marathon.  They both entered for the half marathon, a 13.1 mile loop around the undulating and quiet country roads surrounding the cathedral city of Hereford.  With lovely running weather the pair set off with high hopes, but resulting in mixed fortunes.  Diane was running well until an old injury prevented her from finishing the race, and she was ferried back by 2 nice young men from the St John's Ambulance service.  Graham, however, managed the full distance in 1:38:24, 60th out of 500 and was the first over 60 male.

On Friday evening a team of AVR’ travelled to Exeter to compete in the annual 4 x 4k relays organised by Run Exe. The team had to be re-arranged on Wednesday as Jake Smith had to pull out due to injury. However due to the strength of the club’s current squad of runners we could to ask James Green to stand in at late notice.  Jake came down to support and ended up revelling in the role of Team Manager! The first challenge was getting into Exeter for a 7.00pm start with Devon County Show traffic. Once at The Exwick Playing Fields we could settle down and try to work out the route, who was in who’s team and how the transition stage worked. The Team Manager was on the ball with all of it. The running order for AVR was Ollie Caute – time 13.06, 16th fastest time on the night, Matt Hewer 14.22 and 58th, Luke Reed 13.57 38th and James Green 13.09 18th. 16k (just under 10 miles) done in a time of 54:34. Overall, we finished 6th out of 63 teams, behind some very, very good teams. The event was won by SWRR in 52:1. A great event and everyone had a good run – even with Matt having a minor incident with an overly friendly Labrador near the end of his leg.

AVR’s dominated last Saturday’s Seaton parkrun which was won by Terry Emmett in 18:50 with John Blackledge 2^nd, 19:21 and Matt Hewer 3^rd, 19:25. 1st lady was N1 tri club’s Jane Beech in 22:52.

Several AVR runners travelled to Clyst Hydon to run the very hilly 10 km Clyst Hydon Huff. In perfect weather for running, albeit with rather muddy conditions underfoot given the last few days of heavy rain, Chris Perry was first back for AVR, 6th overall in 43:28. Eleanor Wood was just pipped to 4th female place, finishing 37^th, 1st F55 in 52:14 (one second faster than last year!), whilst Stephen Lewis returned from a long period of injury to finish 64^th, 60:51. In the U15’s 2 km race, Ben Perry (M10), finished 8th. Thanks to all in Clyst Hydon for a well organised and very well marshalled race.

Angela Kerr and Simon Davey ran the Exeter Marathon whilst Martin Kerr and Bec Davey ran its little brother, the Exeter 10. Simon achieved his goal of a sub 4 marathon with a time of 3:58:59. Angela was happy to complete her second marathon this year in 4:32:07. In the 10 mile race, Martin was very pleased with his time of 1:44:58 and Bec, whose knee went at 5 miles, ran the first 5 and walked the last 5 to complete it in 2:11:29 (well there was a beer as the prize so she wasn’t going to give that up!).

15th May

On Wednesday night 6 AVR’s travelled across to Yeovilton to take part in the second race of the 5k series. The 4 runners that took part both this and last month where all slower by between 15-20 seconds. Running into a fairly strong breeze between the 3 to 4k mark was the possible reason for the slightly slower times. Jake Smith was 2nd in 15:46, Ollie Caute 8th 16:39, Terry Emmett 23rd 18:16, Matt Hewer 27th 18:27, Josh Hopson 29th 18:37 and Kelly Stamp 111th 23:46.

Thirteen Axe Valley Runners finished the annual Ottery 10k road race on 14th May organised by Honiton Running Club. First AVR home was Matt Hewer in 30:04 18th overall out of 301, the first female AVR was Carol Austin in 49:33 who was third W55 and 102nd overall. A very special mention is worth making of two AVRs who due to the prize distribution system were running in categories of younger runners (quite a bit younger!) and acquitted themselves very well: Andy Sayers 125th 51:47 and John Mellodew 230th in 1:01:35. Other AVRs finished as follows - Terry Emmett 39:52, Peter Knox 48:17, Rachel Grant 51:46, Angela Kerr 52:32, Laura Kerr 58:41, Fiona Pyle 1:02:38, Kirstin Harwood 1:02:39, Hannah Williams 1:05:07 and Emma Grigg 1:07:56. A big thank you to Honiton RC for a well organised race in splendid sunshine.

Once again James Ashforth decided to test his endurance and compete in Hope24 2017. The aim was to compete 65 miles, which would be 13 laps of a 5 mile course, but the weather wasn't going to play fair.  The event started at 12 and after 9 hours all was going well and James had completed 25 miles, then the weather hit, the rain just kept on coming: - so much so, at 22:00 the event was suspended for 7 hours. The event restarted at 5:00am with a slightly different course due to the issues the rain created and James had a lot to catch up on. After 7 hours, he had done 45 miles. Then a stroke of luck, James managed to pass the line with 2 minutes left till the 24 hours’ deadline, which meant he could go around again so allowing me to get 50 miles. Once again James decided to raise money for charity and raised nearly £350 for hope for children. A superb effort.

The overnight rain softened it up nicely underfoot for this year’s Wambrook Waddle, a hilly 10km off-road race starting and finishing at the Tithe Barn in Cotley near Chard. Fortunately, by the morning sunny, dry conditions had returned for the runners. The senior race was won by Christian Green of Wells City Harriers in a course record time of 39:42. First AVR back was Josh Hopson, 17th out of 105 in 50:32 followed by Clare Hansford, 2nd lady 29th 54:05, Eleanor Wood 3rd lady 31st 54:55 and Phil Bayliss, 34th 55:23.  Karen Eyre was 1st female 45+, 36th 56:05, Roger Bramley 37th 56:36, Alan Morbey 40th 57:58 and Steven Lewis 61st 1:05:10. In the 2K junior race, Sam Eyre was 4th 8:40 whilst brother Wil was 28th 12:04. Many thanks to race director Simon Hall and Chard Road Runners for staging such an outstanding event.

Kevin Feeney ran the Two Tunnels Return Ticket Half Marathon in Bath and finished 88th overall (out of 167) and 3rd M60 in 2:00:18 just 2 minutes outside his PB.  The route follows the Two Tunnels Greenway Path and includes 2 recently re-opened railway tunnels which are 408 and 1670 metres long.  The race is there and back twice, so you are in tunnels for over 8 km – very handy on a warm sunny day!

8th May

Jake Smith proved that he's more than just a runner by representing GB at the European Duathlon Championships in Spain last weekend. The sprint race was a 5K run, 20K cycle followed by a leg-searing, lung-busting, eyeballs-out 2.5K run and Jake performed excellently in the field of 337 men. He was 7th overall and 1st in his age group (AG) after the first run. Cycling isn't his strongest discipline and he dropped to 47th overall and 10th AG after the ride but pulled back with the third-fastest second run to finish 64th overall and 9th AG. He was pleased with his performance and learnt a lot from the experience. Always being game for a challenge, he stopped off on the way home the following day for a 3,000m race and duly set a PB of 8:48! Is there no stopping this guy?

By competing in the Exeter Uni Aquathlon, which was the last in the Exeter Tri Club Series Jonathan and Ethan Day stepped up from Novice to Sprint grade; a 600m Pool Swim followed by a 3 mile Run around the Uni campus. The Swim was in the Exeter Uni outdoor pool which was surprisingly warm for the cold morning. Ethan swam well and exited the pool with Jon 5 lengths behind. Ethan was first to finish, 26th out of 61 with a swim time of 13:19 and run time 20:25 so 33:44 overall. Jonathan lagged behind coming 34th with a swim time of 13:57, run time 21:51 overall 35:48. Many thanks to Pure Endurance Triathletes for all their help and training and also thanks to Exeter Tri Club for a Fantastic Aquathlon Series of 4 events.

Sue Wall ran the Great Bristol 10k in 56:40 beating her previous 10k by over nine minutes.

There was a great turnout of 138 runners for the Beer Blazer 10K that was won by Richard Bateson of Yeovil Town RRC in 42:52 with Matt Clist 2nd, 42:54; Tim Lenton 3rd, 43:47; James Green 4th, 44:57; Garry Perratt 5th, 45:30; Matt Hewer 9th, 50:16; Josh Hopson 11th, 51:35; Ollie Rodger 12th, 52:00; Jonathan Day 17th, 52:52; Tim Sibley 19th, 54:06; Iain Horlock 23rd, 55:00; Eleanor Wood 26th, 55:40; Stephen Grigg 30th, 56:15; Karen Eyre 32nd, 56:26; Roger Bramley 40th, 58:18; Alan Morbey 41st, 58:29; Tony Smith 42nd, 58:35; Steve Haines 43rd, 58:35; Sue Hayes 47th, 59:22; Richard Jackson 53rd, 1:01:40; Kelly Stamp 55th, 1:02:19; Louise Burridge 62nd, 1:04:02; Keith Agland 63rd, 1:04:12; Andrew Hartnell 64th, 1:04:24; Andrew Sayers 65th, 1:04:34; Sarah Herfet 72nd, 1:06:31; Anders Larsson 75th, 1:06:51; Georgia Dommett 78th, 1:07:18; Samantha Miller 80th, 1:07:38; Steven Lewis 83rd, 1:08:01; Nick Adams 86th, 1:09:07; Chris Hill 90th, 1:09:58; Angela Kerr 94th, 1:12:12; Yvette Hill 95th, 1:12:12; John Mellodew 106th, 1:17:12; Suzy Eul-Brown 113th, 1:18:20; Martin Kerr 117th, 1:19:08; Sandra Mortimer 121st, 1:21:46; Amie Sibley 124th, 1:22:18; Emma Ellynn 125th, 1:22:18; Rachel Hiscock 131st, 1:25:46; Esther Maclure 134th, 1:34:44; Steve Maclure 135th, 1:34:48.

AVR's 11year old Tom Perry won the 5K event in 20:38 with AVR's Charlie Kendall 2nd, 21:51 and Jack Fitzgerald of Woodroffe School 3rd, 21:55. Kate Marriott of Sidmouth College was the 1st girl home in 23:13. A cracking run by Tom as he was up against much older runners.

Many thanks the Beer Primary PTFA and everyone who helped put on yet another cracking event.

1st May

AVRs were 1st and 2nd in Saturday's Seaton parkrun with Matt Hewer winning in 19:17 and Oliver Rodger 2nd, 19:49. Daniel Turner of Tadley Runners was 3rd, 20:06 and Eleanor Wood the first lady, 15th overall, 22:08 and Karen Eyre 2nd lady, 18th overall, 22:32.

Patrick Devine-Wright came in 1st at the Killerton Parkrun on Saturday morning in a new PB of 17:30.

James and Tim Sibley travelled down to South Devon for Saturdays Salcombe Coastal Marathon. This was James' debut at the marathon distance, and what a marathon to choose. 4500+ feet of climb along the 26 miles of technical coast path trail from Tor Cross to Bantham, with a ferry ride across the river at Salcombe. After a few unsettled days, Saturdays weather looked better and as the busses dropped the runners at the start the sun came out for what turned out to be a stunning day. James and Tim decided to run together and being James' first Marathon It was about completing the distance and having a good day out. James and Tim finished in 6:41 in 64th and 65th position of the 127 finishers. The event was won by AVR's Tim Lenton in 3:49. Chris and Yvette Hill ran the half marathon finishing together in 3:45.

Reports prior to May are here.