22 Mar 2015 – Wolf’s Pit fell race

Eager for some early season fell race training, Greg Pettingill and Steve Dewick headed to the Peak District for the first race in the “Accelerate” series. With the catchy slogan “Running made easy” and wall to wall sunshine, we were expecting running heaven…..how wrong can you be?

Unusually for a fell race, the start was downhill over perfect pasture, a short length of farm track and a stream crossing followed by reality…350m of ascent in 1km ! The rest of the race was perfect running on moorland paths and tracks followed by a knee crunching descent of the ascent. A fiver well spent!  Out of the 361 finishers Greg Pettingill was147th 53:28; Steve Dewick 338th 69:33. [Greg]

22 Mar 2015 – Ashby 20

For those building up to a spring marathon, the Ashby 20 is often a key milestone, either pacing well for a solid training run, or pushing on to test fitness – it is certainly a tough test in itself, with 20 undulating miles over the roads.

On a sunny spring day, the start/finish area had a great atmosphere, so much so that Jason Barton couldn’t stay away for long – his time of 2.07.42 being the 3rd quickest ever at a 20 mile race as a Strider, with only Chris and Nicola ever going faster.

Simon Bottrill was next home, in an impressive 2.34.54 (given the previous day’s efforts), with Dan Valencia and Michael Atton also putting tired legs to the test in 2.43.43 and 2.44.00.  Rob Beers (representing first claim club, Barrow) 2.43.47.  Rich Gray (2.46.43), Vicki Lowe (2.52.12), Abi Arnott (2.52.13), Michelle Farlow (2.53.27) and John Houghton (2.57.08) put in solid performances whilst building up to longer challenges, as did Sarah Lawrence (3.36.43) and Shaun Staff (4.23.52).  [Rich]


Whats tapering? Race two for some of us this weekend (Grr Shiny Road Runners) and there didn’t seem to be many creaks this morning for the race which most people do as part of their Marathon training.  Now, when you go to an event you see people with T-shirts of `Madrid Half-Marathon` or `Los Angeles Marathon` but let’s be honest in the Midlands running circles the only true respect your going to get is if you sport the famous Ashby 20 hoodie!

It’s pretty much a Bucket list race if just for the Hoodie.  So quite a few debutants this year in fact I think there were seven Strider debutants for this race and it’s not an easy one, all about getting your splits right and not going off like a whirlwind I must admit I had it good on the pressure front as was only pacing a friend yet thoroughly enjoyed it, Michael Atton despite feeling it somewhat after running so hard yesterday managed a great time in his debut, Michelle Farlow looking very ready for the Virgin London Marathon, oh to be honest we all ran very well! Totally a race where I think you can learn from about your running pacing and stamina and we also found out they don’t serve good cups of Tea in Ashby.  [Rob]

21 Mar 2015 – Charnwood Marathon

Rawlins School and Community Centre in Quorn was the location for the start of this year mis-named Charnwood Marathon as there are two distances to choose from a 16 and 27, neither of which exactly constitutes a marathon, but for £10 (£5 of which goes to charity) and some fabulous views you can’t really go wrong. Six [first claim] Striders and Rob Beers made the trip all opting for the 16 miles distance with six of the participants competing in races the following day the plan was for a steady and enjoyable run around Charnwood.
At home among a number of salty looking fell racers is was no surprise to see Greg Pettingill coming in 5th and complete the course in 2:06 followed home by the youthful Alex Riley, a new addition to the Striders with bags of potential, home in 2:16 then Michael Atton who seemed to have completely forgotten that he had the Ashby 20 the next day in 2:26 and bringing up the rear, ably led by Rob Beers from start to finish was John Houghton, Dan Valencia and Simon Bottrill all finishing in 2:46.
This was a great event with the organisers laying on an impressive spread for the returning runners/walkers including hot & cold beverages, 4 different soups, filled rolls and vast array of cakes. [Simon]
My Fourth Charnwood Marathon and for myself the best race in Leicestershire, more ascent than Charnwood Hills, stunning route and all for a mere tenner going towards a great cause. With fixture pile up today’s race would only be a gentle outrun with the boys so no building on last year’s colossal placing (Have I ever mentioned that?).  As per usual the group are unable to stay together due to sheer excitement of being in a race with both Alex  Riley and Michael Atton chasing `Salty old Fell Runner` Greg Pettingill from the race start at Rawlings college Quorn.
It’s quite a pull in the first two miles even up to Woodhouse Eaves although our group aren’t racing there is camaraderie thus anyone walking up the Hills gets the round in, thankfully our strong Stilton legs have no problems with upper Broombriggs, Beacon Hill, Windmill Hill or Cardiac Hill. Into Bradgate Park and were all running really well, we did forget our selfie at the top of Old John but we have real fun navigating our own way to Swithland gates where again we scoffed cake. Through Swithland woods and Swithland village and an easier three miles back to Quorn, 16.3 miles in all a wonderful day out in great company, we got some smashing photos and ended up at a Pub in Barrow on Soar.  [Rob]

15 Mar 2015 – Stathern Duathlon

As a bit of a change to the normal running events six Striders and two potential new recruits made up part of a 142 strong field for this year’s Stathern Duathlon.  A well organised event made up of a 5K run, 18K bike and final 5K run that includes the infamous Mill Hill climb right at the beginning of the bike leg.
First Strider home was Simon Bottrill in 1:21:37 closely followed by Mike Bryan in 1:21:58 then Andy Nicholls  in 1:30:43, John Houghton in 1:33:22, Tony Allen on his debut race in a Striders shirt in 1:35:00, James Bryan  in 1:35:37 and Gary Christmas in 1:37:31 competing along with his son Daniel who beat him in time of 1:30:09.  [Simon]


15 Mar 2015 – Loughborough Half Marathon

Seven Striders made the short trip to Loughborough for the annual half marathon.  On a fairly cold March morning, Natalie Teece was the first Strider home on the undulating course, as well as second female and first FV35, in a time of 1.28.39 (45th). 

Natalie was followed exactly 10 minutes later by Luke Eggleston 1.38.39 (145th) and a few minutes later by Michael Cooke 1.43.26 (193rd), Michelle Farlow crossed the line in 1.49.05 (283rd), with Sarah Lawrence 2.09.28 (569th), Sue Pettingill 2.16.38 (624th) and Stuart Gregory 2.19.00 (646th) completing the completing the Strider contingent.  [Stuart]

15 Mar 2015 – Silverstone Half Marathon

It was a cold breezy morning at the Silverstone race circuit as 4 Striders took on the iconic race track and each came away having put in a fantastic effort to register 3 overall PBs and one Course PB between them. All 4 finished well within the top 800 as they joined 9950 fellow runners. Shane Sharkey was the last one home in a course PB time of 1.38.02 – proving that training is indeed overrated if nothing else. Matt Gayton had set himself a 5 minute window as his target and finished almost exactly in the middle of it in a PB time of 1.32.29. 

At the business end of the event, Jim Hatherley and Jason Barton went head to head for the first time since last October’s Leicester Half Marathon – a contest that Jim got the better of by just 8 seconds. It was a slightly different tale this time around as Jay proved to be the victor, finishing an impressive 12th place overall in a time of 1.17.35. There was absolutely no shame in Jim’s performance as he also recorded a personal best time of 1.18.56 – securing 25th place overall.  [Shane]

Juniors update – March 2015

There will be a break from junior training over Easter, with no training on 31st March, 2nd April, 4th April or 7th April.  Once training starts up again, after the clocks have changed, the venues will move for the summer.

From 9th April, Thursday sessions will be moving back to the country park, meeting at 6pm at the visitor centre.

From 14th April, Tuesday sessions will move back to KE7, meeting at 6.15pm.

These sessions will all be outdoors with no charge and they will be on in all weathers.

Details of this summer’s open meetings at Loughborough, and EA fees for the older juniors have been emailed to the juniors mailing list.