21 Aug 2016 – Rugby Rover 30k

Great turnout from Stilton Striders on this highly recommended 18.6 mile multi-terrain race now in its 14th year. Although sometimes billed as a fell race there is far too much road to be treated as so, it`s maybe nearest to either Seagrave or Woodhouse Mayday in feel so do check it out if not going to Ireland or Racing the train this time next year.Sadly numbers for the race are down again this year, we must have been the most heaviest represented club, too many Derbyshire clubs simply not there supporting this event (A mere £15 on the day plus tech T-shirt or £13 in advance). We start at 9:30am with Stuart Shaw well out ahead for the Striders team, most of us started quite near the back for the opening mile or so along the canal. From the flat start those of us who have done it before know it very suddenly turns into a very steep uphill fell, last year Luke who is running with me ended up walking this, not this year, made it look positively easy! This first major uphill is great for getting the lungs working whilst wondering if your legs ever will again, I feel pretty groggy this morning but more of that later.

We reach the water station at about 8k, I recall last year roping in `Mr Positive split` Luke at about this distance, to be fair I think this year if he gave me 8k head start he`d have caught me on current form! Another big uphill and Luke is flying although he still decides it’s better to run with me than shoot off, we then head for the 10 mile point over many fields towards the radio mast at Alderwasley. Then we head towards the rather fine pub at Alderwasley and perhaps my favourite part of the route, unfortunately my legs aren’t feeling it today, a little lacking in sleep and worst of all stomach problems are starting to happen. I eventually nudge young Luke on who goes on to have a really good and comfortable race as I start to suffer going through Ambergate woods and slow noticeably. Coming out the other side I even am forced to walk due to how my stomach feels, new medication I’m on seemed to be the longer standing problem but at the time it was hell. All I want to do now is get over the finish line and the long three miles back seems a lot further, it wasn’t impressive by any means as 9 mins slower than last year but even then it certainly is and always will be a tough old course.

I thought I had it bad until I learned the fate of Dan Valencia who didn’t read the signs in the last half mile and ended up doing 20.6 miles and came back rather annoyed! Stuart Shaw was back first Strider, despite setting off too fast, it is a hard one to judge if you haven’t done this before where all the bumps are and tiring bits.

Was a tad warm today although the rain in days previous had left it softer (muddier!) underfoot than usual, despite the problems we all had a great day. [Rob]

Stuart Shaw (2:31:38, 22nd), Luke Eggleston (2:38:55, 35th), Rob Beers (2:47:39, 52nd), Paul Geeson (2:48:53, 54th), Simon Bottrill (3:04:24, 81st) John Houghton (3:08:08, 93rd), Matt White (3:11:01, 109th) Dan Valencia (3:26:35, 121st)

14 Feb 2016 – Stamford Valentines 30k

On Track for London Marathon
Proving that their preparations for the upcoming London Marathon are well on track, 2 Stilton Striders finished strongly in the very hilly Stamford 30km. In icy cold conditions and a very strong wind, seasoned marathoner Vicki Lowe finished 14th in the 45-50 year old category recording 2:37:45. 

In only her second attempt at the distance Theresa Coltman recorded 2:44:15 finishing 10th in the 50-55 year old category. With 10 weeks to the London Marathon both ladies were pleased with their performance and look forward to their next test at the Ashby 20 mile race in 5 weeks time.  [Theresa]

16 August 2015 – Belper Rugby Rover 30k

Two late injury worries meant only four Stilton Striders running this year`s Rugby Rover 30k, although we thankfully retained Greg Pettingill in a supportive/advisory measure during the race on a nice sunny day in Belper.  Myself (Rob Beers), Rich Gray, Luke Eggleston and Vicki Lowe donned the blue and whites and made for the start line, thankfully the time honoured route of 13th anniversary of this race has not changed. Luke, winner of yesterday`s parkrun goes off at the race start like a stung cat despite our best efforts telling him not to. A lovely warm up mile along the canal before the first climb and the more harrowing for many second before quite a rocky and perilous descent along some stunning trail. 5k in and Luke is well within my sights, running well but it`s still very early doors and have to admit knowing the course profile helps as the first half has the steepest climbs. Pass Luke at 8k and then its uphill field upon field towards the radio mast and the highest point, this can be really draining already some are down to a walk.

Pass the pub at Alderwasley and come to my favourite part of the course, its ever changing scenery from running beside a field to through a farm then woodland then a kissing gate, the scenery is absolutely breathtaking. I slow up a little through Shining Cliff woods, tummy issues throughout the race after a party the previous night, last time I listen to `you’ll run it off tomorrow`.

Two years ago it wasn’t all run-able to certainly was this time, come out of Shining Cliffs woods and know I’m on the path home, even the Bovines in the field don’t bother me for once. 18.6 miles is a long way in most people`s books but the undulation (ok sometimes quite hard hills) and terrain do really take it out of the legs so very happy to be getting stronger with age!

Aiming for sub 2:40 and make it in at 2:37 in 42nd place! Rich gets a course PB in 2:48, a very tired but well ran Luke in at 2:50 and Vicki Lowe at 3:14.

A great race which I’ve said many times, friendly and laid back, cheap entry with a great tech T-shirt, even as training it’s a good day out and a lovely course, hope we can get a few more in 2016.  [Rob]

15 Feb 2015 – Stamford Valentine 30k

Lovely sunny Sunday made race conditions perfect for the Stamford Valentine 30k.  This was a training run for Vicki Lowe and Natalie Teece on their way to the London Marathon in the Spring.  Great support around the course from Stamford (and Stilton!) Striders Celina and Nick.

Natalie finished as 7th lady in 2.10.18 and Vicki 7th in age category 2.35.24.  [Vicki]