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Drogo delight for AVR

There was a tremendous turn-out for AVR at the Drogo 10, a multi-terrain race around the beautiful countryside of Castle Drogo Estate. The start and finish was at the National Trust Estate with stunning views of the River Teign. Half of all the entry fee went towards maintenance of the Estate.

It was a sunny start to the race but soon the rain was falling adding to the muddy and challenging conditions underfoot after the recent stormy weather.  More than 400 runners completed the race that attracted some high calibre competitors.

First AVR home was Andrew Snook in seventh place in 1:09.35, third M40.  First female for AVR was Kerry Board in an excellent 1:30.08 which was also second F45.  Eleanor Wood was second F65 in 1:31.50 with Rupert Pady also taking an age-group second, M55, in 1:22.56.  Rob Collier was third M50 and an excellent 36th overall in 1:18.03;  Karen Eyre taking the female equivalent, 3rd F50 in 1:34.20; Dawn Carrah was third F60 in 1:44.25 while Andy West took third M65 in 1:35.13.

More photos on our facebook page courtesy of Wayne Tooze.

Full results are available here


Seventh heaven for Seaton parkrun

The sun shone for the seventh birthday celebrations at Seaton parkrun on Saturday.   The conditions could not have been more different to the previous weekend when the carnage from Storm Ciaran caused the cancellation of the event.

It was thanks to the incredible clearing up work by East Devon District Council’s Street Scene team that this weekend’s parkrun could go ahead.  The team cleared all the pebbles and beach debris from the Esplanade.  Volunteers from parkrun also had to replace, restore, locate and clean a lot of equipment following the damage done to the store-room by the enormous waves and wind of the storm.

The pebble sections were rather ‘lumpier’ than usual  and more than 40 volunteers supported the 228 runners and walkers, ensuring their safety and giving the usual Seaton welcome.

As it was a birthday there was, of course, fancy dress and cake.  Winner of the best outfit was Louise Rawlins who came as a coffee cup reflecting the parkrun ethos that “it was always about the coffee”.

For AVR, first female finisher was Debbie Whiston in 21.00 while Janet Cullum was second on age-grade with 78% for her 28.58.  Despite the challenging pebbles this week, there were PBs for Pam Goddard in 30.10 and Rebecca King in 34.47.  Bec Davey celebrated her 100thparkrun in a fabulous 7 of hearts outfit while Lindsey Freathy reached her 100 volunteer stints at Seaton receiving the prized hat.

After the run, a fantastic cake made by Kathryn Thompson was cut by Event Directors, Tony Smith and Carol Austin.  The seven years of parkrun have been excellently supported by AVR with 276 members having completed the 5k; between them amassing an amazing 10815 runs plus the all-important volunteering required every week.

Super Sunny Sunday in Sidmouth

Ten AVRs took the short trip to Sidford to take part in the LM Events Sidmouth 10k, which starts and finishes at the social hall in the village.  The route takes runners along the beautiful Byes to the seafront then loops back after two steep climbs on Hillside and Cliff Road.

After Storm Ciaran the sun shone on Sunday for the 256 runners with AVR’s Joel Seward taking first place in an excellent 37:29. After his cricket induced summer break from racing he is well and truly back!

Next AVR home was Tony Smith in 26th place in 48.43, just pipping Honiton’s Howard Bidmead, and taking third M55.  In 39th place and winning the M70 award was Ron Seward finishing in 50.48.  Fiona Seward completed a good day for the Seward family, finishing 156th in 1.03.50.

Andy Broom, 89th in 57.09; Gail Van Der Leeden, 112nd in 59.48; Sam Miller, 122nd in 1:00.56; Georgie Ryan, 161st in 1:04.41; Derek Blumfield, 82nd in 1:06.36 and Jayne Tumber, 235th in 1:15.28 were the other AVR finishers.


Birthday in Bideford 

Amanda Gowler and Diane Newton took part in the Bideford AAC organised popular 10-mile race on Sunday.  The race takes in magnificent views of the Taw and Torridge estuary heading out on roads and back on the Tarka Trail.  It is a mainly flat route with three small inclines so can be a fast course depending on how the wind is on the day, especially on the Tarka Trail when head winds can make it a tough return.

On Sunday, new member Amanda Gowler celebrated her birthday, finishing 351st in 1:27.15 while Diane Newton was very pleased to finish in 2:12:26, 687th, well under the target she had set for herself.

More than 700 completed the well organised race, which forms one leg of the Bideford triple- 10k, 10 mile and half marathon organised throughout the year-


All for a pasty!

Jeremy Slade took part in his first road marathon for a number of years running the Cornish marathon on Sunday.  After a number of hilly off road marathons and ultra marathons he had just the 26.2 miles to deal with and was rewarded with stunning views, a big PB and a Cornish pasty!

The very scenic but hilly circular route started along the Draynes Valley through ‘Poldark’ country of Bodmin Moor, then continued past King Arthur’s legendary Dozmary Pool, Du Maurier’s Jamaica Inn at Bolventor and back along the beautiful Fowey Valley.  Jeremy completed it in 4:50.07 coming in in 248th spot from nearly 400 finishers.

Devon Trail 10k

Cliff Marriott battled through the rain and wind on Saturday to take part in the Devon Trail 10k which started at Bicton College and ran around Woodbury Common.  The lovely, undulating route was very wet underfoot from Storm Ciaran and included a number of river crossings but the rain held off during the race, which Cliff finished in 1:02.06, 58th from 142 finishers.

Rain stopped play!

There was no parkrun at Seaton due to the damage on the Esplanade including to the parkrun equipment store from Storm Ciaran.  The clean-up has begun and hopefully the event will go ahead this Saturday, 11th Nov,  when Seaton parkrun celebrates its seventh anniversary.  Volunteers and parkrunners will be in fancy dress with prizes for the best outfits and there is every chance of cake!  Check the event page or FB to confirm it is going ahead.

Stunning Snowdonia

Sue Hayes and Angela Kerr travelled up to beautiful Snowdonia to take part in the very popular Marathon Eyri, twice voted as the most popular marathon in the UK.  The 26.2 mile route encircles Yr Wyddfa (Snowdon), the highest peak in Wales.

It is tough, undulating run with a mix of on and off-road trails giving spectacular views across the mountain and the valleys beyond.  Sue Hayes finished in an impressive 4:17.40, 715thplace and 30th F45 with Angela Kerr completing it in 5:37.06, 1834th and eighth F65.  There were 2241 finishers cheered on by big crowds around the course.

Couch to 5k ends in roaring success

 Another Couch to 5k programme came to an end last week with six ‘graduating’ by running 5k non-stop on Wednesday evening.  Four others have also regularly completed 5k at parkrun.  Many of these will be joining AVR in the next few weeks.  Congratulations to all of you and big thanks to Cliff Marriott and his helpers for all their encouragement and support especially given some challenging weather on occasion!


Grand performance from Georgie

Georgie Ryan ran the Grand Canal Canter half-marathon in Tiverton on Sunday.  In just her third half she finished 2.21.32, 54th place and second F55; a huge PB, taking a staggering 31 minutes off her previous best.  There were 69 finishers in the race that follows the towpath of the Grand Western Canal.

 Seaton parkrun

It was a quiet one for AVR with Ron Seward second on age-grade in 76% for his 23.34 and Karen Eyre third in 75% for her 22.57.  There were 249 finishers.

On their travels were Dave Hutton and Sue Chambers who completed Amager Faelled parkrun in Copenhagen.  Sally Raynes took part in Alderford Lake parkrun in Shropshire while closer to home, Haydn Boehm ran Upton House parkrun in Poole and Amie and Tim Sibley completed Weymouth parkrun.

Halloween Fun

Matt Frost took part in the Exeter Halloween 10-mile race organised by Exeter City Community Trust. Using it as a training run for his Valencia marathon in five weeks time, he finished fourth in a time of 1:05:10.

With Halloween, the spookiest night of the year, falling on Tuesday, Count Clifford has seen a fang-tastic opportunity to have a hauntingly good time with an AVR run around the eerie streets of Seaton. Ghoulishly delightful fancy dress is de rigueur, so dress to distress! Starting at the Cricket Club at 6.30pm, where the chills and thrills begin.