Bats – Race reports (from another busy week)

Bats have taken part in a number of events over the past week.

The toughest event has to be the SDW100 which is a 100 mile continuous point to point trail race along the South Downs Way, from Winchester to Eastbourne. The race began at 0600 on Saturday 13th June 2015 and runners must reach the finish line in Eastbourne within 30 hours or by noon on Sunday 14th June to be recognised as an official finisher. There are further cut offs on route.

The South Downs Way crosses a huge range of terrain types and underfoot conditions vary greatly. The Downs are primarily composed of chalk, which tends to mean the trail is dry and usable year round, but also means the trail is very rough in places with a lot of loose stones and rocks. At times the SDW becomes dirt road, woodland tracks, rocky chalk ascents and descents, grass, mud or in places tarmac. The South Downs are one of the warmest and driest parts of the UK, but they are exposed, sitting high above the surrounding countryside, looking down across the coastline and English Channel in various places. It is therefore relatively easy to spot weather coming from any distance, but runners will be exposed both to whatever weather conditions prevail on the day as well as potentially very high winds. The winds commonly prevail from the West which will assist runners in their direction of travel. It is always possible that the wind may be blowing from any other direction which will hinder progress at certain spots.

Taking part in this really tough event was lone Bat Rachel Wood. Rachel was supported by her crew (Team Weird Chicken), Gilly Champion and club member Murray Turner who kept the rest of the club updated with Rachel’s progress as she made her way across the Downs. Rachel finished in a truly fantastic time of 25.02.37 and has earnt herself the name ‘The Legend’ from fellow team mates who are totally in awe of her fantastic achievement, well done Rachel.

Rachel is pictured with Murray at Devils Dyke.

On Wednesday 10th June, on a glorious summers evening, 3 Bere Alston Trekkers (BATs) took part in the third of Armada Athletic Networks 5k series in the Grounds of Saltram House. This a multi-terrain 5k suitable for all abilities of runner, held on the second Wednesday of the month.

Martin Head 24.54 (PB); Matthew Luckham 26.00 and Hilary Head 33.25 (PB)

On Sunday 13th June, a humid morning saw 15 Bere Alston Trekkers (BATs) take on the Plym Valley Challenge. Organised by Instinctive Sports this is a multi-terrain run of 7 country miles within Plym Bridge woods on rough ground with uneven steps and a steep slope.

The start and finish is at Tor Bridge High, Estover. The route follows old tram tracks and logging tracks out to Hatshill Wood, below Bickleigh Village and then returns along the river valley navigating two disused rail bridges. There is then a short run along the old canal before turning right over Plym Bridge back into the woods and then the climb back up the hill to return to Tor Bridge High. A number of BATs recorded personal bests. First male Bat home and eighth overall was Steve Hill and first lady Bat was Julie Page who also finished first in her age group for the second time this summer.

Steve Hill 0.50.42; Julie Page 1.04.53; Sally Dunn 1.08.33; Martin Head 1.08.33; Emma Dooney 1.13.13; Matthew Luckham 1.17.00; Tobias Rankin 1.17.00; Frances Morgan 1.17.47; Kate Glanville 1.20.53; Natasha Ayres 1.23.41; Alison Greaves 1.23.41; Mel Greaves 1.23.41; Christine Le Flem 1.29.40; Jo Vella 1.29.40 and Hilary Head 1.41.01.

Running the Potters ‘Arf Marathon was the clubs Bat ‘up North, Andy Cowden who finished in a time of 1.59.57 and Nicky Edmunds who completed the Swansea Half Marathon in 2.21.00.

Bats will next be running at next weekends South Downs Trail Half and Full marathon which is this years club trip.

Centurion 100 - Start(3) Centurion 100 - Start(2) Team Bat - Potters 'Arf 2015 Team Bat - Swansea Half 2015