Bats – Total Warriors!

The Total Warrior challenges are not your standard trail runs. The Total Warrior team has worked with ex-military personnel to bring participants the ultimate test of strength, stamina, agility and mental determination. The unforgiving Lake District terrain along with their specially designed hardcore obstacles means success is about survival and not speed.  The course at Shap Abbey is designed to give contestants an adrenaline rush that they cannot get anywhere else and the tough sporting challenge brought thousands of competitors to Cumbria this Saturday and Sunday.  Contestants from 37 countries were corralled in a pen before being given a motivational speech. Smoke bombs are thrown across the track – and then they are off.  Two of those taking part were a husand and wife team from Bere Alston Trekkers (Bats).

The first few miles are all good fun, and having gone through some extremely  steep hill zigzags and a fire gauntlet, it was straight forward hills, hills and  more hills. During the hills most people  had to take walking breaks because of the nature of the ground and incline. This  section was undoubtedly the hardest, peat and boggy ground, very undulating and  just when you thought the hill was conquered, there looms another just 100m  away.  Once they had summated it was time to start their very welcome descent.

Just as steep as on the way up and ending at the lowest part of the  course, this was the freewheeling enjoyable part, although concentration was  needed to avoid coming a cropper on the terrain. This took Laura and Nathan down to the water  stop and after that the fun started. Firstly with a barbed  wire mud crawl, straight into mud filled tunnels. Then up and down across hills  through a 20 feet wide 7 foot deep river crossing and 6 feet mud filled pool.  This part of the course meant doubling back upon yourself numerous times and  encountering a further river crossing, cargo scramble nets, 7ft walls and 30ft  hay bail climbs.

Finally into the last leg after a mad dash up a muddy rock  incline came another climb, which at the top held a massive waterslide. to  the penultimate hill, after heaving themselves over the slip hazard with ropes, off  down the hill to the bottom of the final climb. Now just the last leg of incline  was between them and the finish. Legs aching and lungs burning, they rounded the bend  of the final hill into the finish area, only to find that they were to run through  some electric hanging wires as a final treat.

Glad to have finished and  feeling as if they thoroughly deserved it, it was time to collect their victory  beers and have an unfairly cold hose down to get clean, before making the
6 hour drive  home. Nathan and Laura ‘ran’ together and finished in a great time of 01.51.15.  They are pictured:

Team Bat - Total Warrior

Bats – 6 Moor Miles

Last weekend saw a large colony of Bats (Bere Alston Trekkers), taking part in the 6 Moor Miles with 18 club members taking part. The 6 Moor Miles race provides a unique opportunity to run a one lap course of approximately 6 miles (ish!), in the picturesque surroundings of the Maristow Estate, across the open Moorland on a well Marshalled course which starts at the Leg of Mutton in Yelverton.

Although the weather had been hot and sunny in the week leading up to the race, early morning downpours ensured that the ground was wet, slippery and muddy underfoot which made the going a bit tougher than expected but nothing that the Bats could not deal with following all the off-road training that the club undertakes as part of its standard training.

First male Bat home and finishing 7th overall was Ben Neale who is training for the Chicago marathon later in the year, Ben was quickly followed by Nathan Newton and Steve Watson who ran a personal best.  First female Bat home and running a course personal best by over 3 minutes was Dotty Allan who is training for the Bude Brute in September.

Making his debut for the club was Keith Roberts.  A big well done has to be said to Paul Mingo who ran a personal best on the back of a very long training run the day before and to Laura Newton, Fran Morgan and Emma Wright who ran great times and to Julian Setterington who also ran a course personal best.

The Bats are pictured, left to right, back: Phil King 01.01.47, Julian Setterinton 56:46, Steve Watson 47.14, Nathan Newton 44.29, Martin Head 56.35, Mike Smith 52.57, Mike Chipperfield 01.00.21, (middle) Laura Newton 01.07.23, Fran Morgan 01.12.00, Emma Wright 01.04.27, Hilary Head 01.34.40, Heather Smith 01.07.45, Ben Neale 41.04, Keith Roberts 01.04.05, (front) Maria Kushnirov 59.55, Dotty Allan 56.42, Pam Adams 01.06.06 and Paul Mingo 01:00:30.

6 Moor Miles 2012 Start (16)

Bats – Torbay, Lanhydrock and the Dark Side!

Bats took part in an array of events last weekend. Newest club members, Nathan Newton and Tracey Oxborough along with one of the longest serving club members, Samantha Marshall took part in the Torbay Half Marathon.  The Torbay Half Marathon route is a traffic free two lap route which starts and finishes on Paignton seafront, taken in the stunning coastal views across Torbay. Starting with one lap of Paignton Green before heading towards Torquay, where the course passes the historic Torre Abbey and by the Princess Gardens where runners start the return back to Paignton.

Sam and Nathan are pictured: Samantha Marshall 2.05.00 and Nathan Newton 1.37.28.  Also running for Bats but not pictured was Tracey Oxborough 1.43.28.

Team Bat - Torbay Half Marathon 2012

One Bat and his dog took part in the Lanhydrock 10 mile off road race.  This is a hard, hilly and hot course held in the beautiful grounds of the National Trust’s Lanhydrock estate.  Bats were one of four teams tacking part in the event and finished in a time of 1.34.36.  Julian Setterington and Eccles are pictured.

Team Bats - Lanhydrock Run 2012

Three Bats crossed to the dark side of running in order to take part in the Dartmoor Classic cycle event.  The Dartmoor Classic 2012 Cyclosportive offers a choice of two routes, 104 Miles (166 km) and 65 miles (104 Km) with Bats taking part in the latter.  Although times are not known at the time of writing, club members would like to say a big well done to those Bats taking part – Ralph Elmes 6.12.48 (bronze), Jo Campbell 6.12.51 (bronze) and Julie Brownlie 5.06.29 (silver).

The dark side:

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Bats – Plym Valley Challenge (ladies placed)

Nine Bere Alston Trekkers (Bats) took part in the Plym Valley Challenge last Sunday with great results.

This is a multi-terrain course over 8.2 miles.  With a new start from Tor Bridge High in Estover the course goes out to Plym Bridge Road and Wrigleys into the beautiful Plym Bridge woods where runners follow old tram tracks and logging tracks out to Hatshill Wood, below Bickleigh Village and then return along the river valley navigating 2 disused rail bridges. Runners then run along the old canal before turning right over Plym Bridge and then back into the woods and up the hill returning to Tor Bridge High.  With the recent bad weather there was plenty of mud and puddles to run through, tree roots to negotiate and slippery hills to climb.

However, with all the cross-country training the Bats do they literally flew around the course which is also one of the clubs grand prix events.  First male Bat home was Mike Smith and first lady was Maria Kushnirov.  Bats were also placed with the ladies winning second and fifth team and Dotty Allan finishing second in her age group.

The Bats are pictured (left to right) back: Heather Smith 01.36.17, Mike Smith 01.12.59, Julian Setteringon 01.34.10, Paul Mingo 01.24.58, (front) Maria Kushnirov 01.17.37,
Dotty Allan 01.18.07, Rachel Wood 01.20.45, Sue Collins 01.30.41 and Pam Adams 01.24.00.

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Bats take on the Dartmoor Discover

After 8 months of hard training and taking part in various events including The Grizzly, last Saturday was time for five Bere Alston Trekkers (Bats) to take their places at the start of the Dartmoor Discovery. The Discovery is an ultrathon run around Dartmoor and is entirely on roads. The event starts in Princetown, and follows a route passing through Dartmeet, Poundsgate, Newbridge, Ashburton, Buckland in the Moor, Widecombe in the Moor, and Postbridge, before making its way back to finish in Princetown. The current distance is 52.115 km (32 miles 674 yards). Entrants are required to have completed a marathon on an ‘average’ course in less than 5 hours (or something equivalent), there was a limit of 225 entries for the race where only 44 of these were women and on the day 175 finished.

The weather, although wet at times, was overall perfect for the event which was brilliantly organised and everyone taking part was very looked after from start to finish. The hills on the course are very challenging and some drag on for over a mile but the downhill’s, flats and support on the course kept everyone going.

First Bat home in fantastic time was Steve Watson who paced himself throughout to finish strong. Steve was chased home by Dotty, Rachel and Murray who ran a text book event, hit every target along their way and maintained their 32 minute advantage of the strict cut-off times, they were quickly followed by Jon who also ran extremely well. Four of the five Bats had never run a marathon before and to complete such a long event over the tough terrain of the Discovery is brilliant.

Big thanks go out to Phil for the brilliant car support, Julian for his cycling support and pacing and to the entire 20+ entourage of supporters on foot and cycles along the route and a big thank to everyone that has sponsored members of the club for this and other events.

The victorious Bats are pictured (left to right): Rachel Wood 05.59.32, Steve Watson 04.55.00; Dotty Allan 05.59.32, Murray Turner 05.59.32 and Jon Eatly 06.04.01.

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Bere athletes excel in Edinburgh‏

Taking part in the Edinburgh Marathon earlier this month were three runners from the Bere Peninsular.  Despite the heat three runners from the Peninsular achieved great times in this famous Scottish marathon.  Ben Poole from Bere Ferrers (left) achieved a personal best of 2.58.38,. Laurence Sargeant from Weir Quay and running for Bere Alston Trekkers (middle) also achieved a personal best and ran a brilliant of 3.24.47 and finished 9th overall in his age group and Tom Sargeant, also from Weir Quay, ran his first marathon in the amazing time of 3.14.13.

The hot but happy runners are pictured.

Team Bat - Edinburgh Marathon 2012

Bats – Haldon Hearbeat

Five Bats ran a very wet and muddy Haldon Heartbeat on Saturday.  The 8 and a bit mile course started at a misty Exeter racecourse and followed trails through Haldon forest and private heathland.  The event, organised by Haldon Trail Runners, raised money for
HeartSwell South West, whose patron, BBC Radio Devon presenter Judy Spiers, started the race.

For the three women runners this was their first trail race.  The Bats are pictured (left to right) Martin Head (1.20.24), Eleanor Butland (1.35.45), Emma Wright
(1.35.10), Mike Smith (1.12.49) and Heather Smith (1.35.11).

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London Marathon 2012

Taking part in her fifth and last London Marathon was Bere Alston Trekker (Bat) Dotty Allan.  Although the day was a bit warmer than expected and the rain held off until the afternoon it was a great weather for this event.  The streets were packed all the way along the route with well wishers and supporters who really do spur the runners on.

Dotty was lucky enough to run a good for age time last year which meant this year she was on the celebratory start as well as the faster runners and she was able to mingle amongst them dishing out homemade cake until the event started at 9.45am.  Once on the course Dotty got into her stride, high fived as many children as possible, visited both her charity stations and really enjoyed the event and finished in a time of 04:04:58 and 321 out of 1546 in her age group.

Dotty would like to thank everyone who has supported and sponsored her so far.  Her next event will be the 32 mile Dartmoor Discovery in June, if you would like to sponsor Dotty please visit: http://www.justgiving.com/Dotty-Allan

Dotty is pictured at mile 17.

Dotty Allan - London Marathon 2012

Bats – Tavy 13 2012

Taking part in last Sunday’s half marathon were nine members of Bere Alston Trekkers (Bats).

The course started at Tavistock College, wounds its way along Crease Lane before climbing up Mill Hill and around the clubs home turf of Mile Level before returning for a fast finish along Crowndale and a lap of the track

Making their debut for the club was Eleanor Butland.  Running the event for the second time and achieving a course personal best was Murray Turner who ran 6 minutes quicker, Ralph Elmes who was also first in his age group and Laurence Sargeant who was second in his age group.  Rachel Wood also ran a great race and achieved a distance personal best.  Also, a big well done to Pam, Dave, Julian and Paul on their times.

The Tavy 13 Bats are pictured (left to right): (back) Julian Setteringon 02.01.11, Rachel Wood 02.01.11, Murray Turner 01.41.09,  Paul Mingo  02.11.17, Pam Adams 02.03.38,
Dotty Allan (Bats support team), (front) Dave Adams 01.45.09 and Ralph Elmes 01.55.16. (Not pictured Laurence Sargeant 01.36.04 and Eleanor Butland 02.25.55).

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BATs and the Tavy 13

Taking part in last Sunday’s half marathon were nine members of Bere Alston Trekkers (BATs).

The course started at Tavistock College, wounds its way along Crease Lane before climbing up Mill Hill and around the clubs home turf of Mile Level before returning for a fast finish along Crowndale and a lap of the track

Making their debut for the club was Eleanor Butland.  Running the event for the second time and achieving a course personal best was Murray Turner who ran 6 minutes quicker, Ralph Elmes who was also first in his age group and Laurence Sargeant who was second in his age group.  Rachel Wood also ran a great race and achieved a distance personal best.  Also, a big well done to Pam, Dave, Julian and Paul on their times.

The Tavy 13 BATs are pictured (left to right): (back) Julian Setteringon 02.01.11, Rachel Wood 02.01.11, Murray Turner 01.41.09,  Paul Mingo 02.11.17, Pam Adams 02.03.38,
Dotty Allan (BATs support team), (front) Dave Adams 01.45.09 and Ralph Elmes 01.55.16. (Not pictured Laurence Sargeant 01.36.04 and Eleanor Butland 02.25.55).
Team Bat - Tavy 13