This is my 6th or 7th year doing this event which is now in its 36th year, for those unfamiliar with this handicap challenge it’s an annual Boxing Day event with slower runners starting first with minute intervals with the idea of all runners finishing together.
If you haven’t done this one before it’s a great way to get on out there on Boxing Day rather than watching Goldfinger or polishing off the Quality street. Very happy to report this year got the record Stilton Striders turnout with Boxing Day regular David Hall (debuting in his Stilton top), Kaye Mead, Katie Hateley, Sarah Procter and John and Janet Hudson out for team Melton. Although this is now pretty much the same course as the Barrow 6 LRRL race probably 70% are in fancy dress, another 15% are hung over or taking it steady and the rest are semi-taking it serious.
Half between little confidence, half between fatigue I set myself an easy target this year of 7:30`s and an easy plod round a course I’ve never been fond of, I thought I’d be amongst old running friends in my group but set out with no-one I knew. The plan was to catch up with Katie who set off a minute earlier and run with her, although I was gently reeling her in and she was running a blinder, its David Hall I catch first on that awful undulating road out towards Hoton.Nice and steady as we hit the flat, I pass Katie who waives me on and next catch up with John Hudson where I slow up and run beside him for a bit, pressing on I find an injured and tearful Sarah Procter who despite running with painful injury still managed a sub 50 min time! My run takes me past various Fairies, Roman centurions, men in drag, Santa`s, jockey`s, Leprechaun`s, Schoolgirls and giant Chickens!
Last mile and a half I find Kaye Mead in Super Mario Bros outfit, she`s suffering she reckons, it was hard work but she did it, no doubt! I told her she`d done the worst of it lying through my teeth as that horrid hill back into Barrow loomed.
Heavy traffic round the park and then the long straight road back to Humphrey Perkins School and the finish, 41:32 in a course nearer to 10k than six miles and not even out of breath! That certainly bodes well for 2017.
The entire Stilton contingent had a great day and the praise for the event was unanimous, Barrow Runners put this on tremendously well and it’s a very friendly and supportive event that really is good for all ability of runners all for about £7 entry, see you again next year! [Rob]
What`s this two tarmac slapping races in two days? Well after enjoying the last one somewhat and also feeling compelled to support a local race again I donned the road shoes for this one. There`s a lot to be said for positively promoting an event which I’d been doing the last week and it paid off superbly as we were by far the best supported club on the night with a massive attendance of fellow Stilton Striders, must’ve been easily double the shirts than last year.Political statements started early with the army of blue and white running down together en masse to the start line, if anyone hadn’t heard of Stilton Striders they certainly did after.
Start time of 7:30 and Jay Barton and Luke Egglestone lead the field on the downhill start to the centre of the Whissendine before the long pull up past the church. Initial ideas are to stick near Darren Glover but legs are more tired than I thought after Wednesday and going off more moderately would’ve helped also. I instead run near Mark Stoneley but the fast start and cooling down after my warm up have an effect on me, further excuses include its very humid which is my worse running weather. Mark pulls in front at 3 miles and I don’t feel so great until I reach the top of Stapleford Hill. Overtaken by three more people shortly after on the uphill, thankfully that was it for the rest of the race as I really felt I had slowed so much that every man and his dog was passing me.
Completely missed the four mile sign and suddenly realised the 5 mile sign I had a mile to go, the legs woke up somewhat in the last mile and a half but can’t quite catch anyone in front. Slam back into the village for the descent to the finish, it`s a good time but not a great performance-not bad for a salty though who rarely does road I guess.
Jay said it right, when you pay £10 for a cracking road race and a memento glass and bottle of beer as a goodie bag it is rather superb. We stood there watching our runners come in and it seemed like every couple of seconds a blue and white vest would be coming through with loud shouting accompanying, very good night to be a Strider! [Rob]
Full results, including all 27(!) Striders racing, via race website: http://www.whissendine6ix.org.uk/about.html
With Jay Barton preoccupied with his 3rd honeymoon and not getting his entry in, first Strider was up for grabs. I ran the race with Luke either just in front of me, beside me or just behind me, with the pair of us always in Darren’s sight. With a third of a mile to go I was able to pull away to claim 1st Strider.
Matt Gayton (37:24)
Luke Eggleston (37:37)
Darren Glover (37:56)
Mark Stoneley (40:02)
Daniel Howley (47:52)
Sarah Procter (48:25)
Helen Plant (50:50)
Great support from John and Lou Houghton. With races selling out in advance it’s definitely worth looking a few weeks ahead. It would be great to see more Striders racing. [Matt]
A week after the club’s home event at the Stilton 7, the next LRRL winter league race saw 10 Striders take on the hilly Kibworth 6. On a cold but bright morning, Luke Eggleston continued his run of form, with a big PB for 38.20. Matt Gayton (40.24), Clive Kent (41.51), Richard Gray (43.52), Tam Nicol (48.01) and Jon Wilson (51.00) completed the Mens team.
For the women, Vicki Lowe came home in 47.46, followed by Debs Wilson (57.38) before Jenny Kent and Steph Barlow finished together for a very creditable 62.14.
After last weekend’s snow caused the cancellation of the Markfield 10k, this Sunday saw the start of this year’s Leicestershire Road Running League (“LRRL”) winter league. With illness and injury depriving the club of a number of runners, on an unseasonably warm morning there were 13 Stilton Striders toeing the start line.
Jason Barton was first Strider home, covering the 6 mile course in an impressive 34.51 for 16th place overall. Next to finish, taking over 4 minutes off last year’s time, was Luke Eggleston in 38.20. Matt Gayton (39.21), Darren Glover (40.23) and Clive Kent (42.04) all finished in the top third of the record breaking 730 strong field.
Andy Nicholls, Katie Hateley and Michael Cooke crossed the line in quick succession (44.12, 44.13 and 44.20), followed by Wayne Hackett (45.29) and, making her debut for the club, Harriette Wright (51.42). Steph Barlow, Tam Nicol and Jenny Kent completed the set, finishing together in 60.27.
The next race in the winter league series is our very own Stilton 7, which takes place from The Stute at Asfordby Hill on Sunday 28th February. We’ll be publicising full details and put out a volunteer request shortly, so please hold the date in your diary.
Information re Sunday’s race is below – Striders will meet at the Wilton Road car park for car sharing at 9am as usual.
Barrow Runners are looking forward to welcoming member clubs of the LRRL to the Barrow 6 league race on Sunday 24th January 2016.
Venue: Humphrey Perkins School, Cotes Road, Barrow upon Soar, Loughborough, Leicestershire. LE12 8JU
Start Time 10.30am.
Club Registration will be in the School hall and the dining area just off the main hall. All Clubs will have allocated tables for registration.
Refreshments will be available.
CAN YOU PLEASE ADVISE YOUR MEMBERS IT IS IMPERATIVE THAT THEY CAR SHARE, GIVEN THE LARGE NUMBERS OF RUNNERS EXPECTED TO ATTEND THIS EVENT. PLEASE ENCOURAGE YOUR MEMBERS TO GET TOGETHER TO SHARE CARS.
THE CAR PARK WILL BE OPEN FROM 08.45AM. PLEASE ENCOURAGE YOUR RUNNERS TO ARRIVE EARLY.
WE WILL BE ONLY ALLOWING CARS WITH 2 ( PREFERABLY 3 OR 4 OR MORE) INDIVIDUALS INTO THE CAR PARKING AREA. CARS WITH ONLY 1 PERSON IN WILL BE ASKED TO PARK IN THE VILLAGE.
THE RACE GOES OUT OF THE VILLAGE FROM THE SCHOOL AND COMES BACK IN THE SAME WAY ALONG COTES ROAD, SO ANY RUNNERS PARKING ON THE ROAD WILL POTENTIALLY BLOCK THE RUNNING PATH AND SHOULD BE DISCOURAGED FROM DOING SO.
IF EVERYONE FOLLOWS THE ABOVE ADVICE WE WILL BE ABLE TO ACCOMMODATE ALL CARS AND RUNNERS WITHIN THE FACILITIES WE HAVE AVAILABLE.
The weather forecast for the Sunday is fine at the moment. Given any adverse Weather conditions, we will use our website and social media to give runners up to date information.
This Xmas cracker has been going since something like 1982 and I’ve done this every year since I’ve been involved with running. Boxing day every year, run a course approximately 6.17 miles on road in which a good 60-70% are doing it in fancy dress and probably the same number are doing it with hangovers.
The idea of the event is that all runners finish together, so really there is no winner of the race so to speak; every runner is given a handicap and sets off at minute intervals according to speed (or pleasure!) thus the slowest runners set off at 10:50 and so on all the way down to 11:30.
Bit of a political niggle here is how the course has been changed over the years due to local councils thus why the current Barrow 6 course is now exactly the same as this. Similarly I was informed Barrow Runners were made to pay for hire per room from the school, given what local running clubs do for the community, sports participation levels, local prestige etc it’s a rather bad trend we are seeing in running and about time it went the other way, don’t you think ?
So as the race begins at 10:50 we are treated to a compendium of costumes Spiderman, Village People, Xmas Tree`s, Bavarians, American Football players, even Jesus! I`m the only Stilton Strider today although John Hudson is wearing neutral colours and Kaye Mead is here supporting, I had taken the safe option handicap wise until I realized I was being supported! Oh Dear means I have to try a bit harder.
So set off with a group of runners I knew very well but within the first hundred metres I kick on, soon catching the next group ahead within the first mile. Due to the nature of the course which by the way I absolutely hate, you always wonder about going off to hard , I thankfully don’t have much trouble with that long hill on the way out of Barrow.
The overtaking of runners is coming thick and fast especially along the 2-3 mile flat stretch, earlier on I had bet John Hudson I`d catch up with his 8 min handicap at mile 4, but reeled him in at 3.88 ! I must’ve been going some as the legs were feeling it a bit a 4.5 miles and slalom-ing past the slower runners at certain points of the course did become a grind at some sections. Made it back in without any runner passing me in 40.11
It is a very laid back and thoroughly well organised event whether you want a bit of fun or wish to whip round at full pelt, darest I say it`s far more enjoyable many times over in my opinion doing it boxing day than a few weeks later as a league race! `If` you can drag yourself to running on Boxing day then this is a very enjoyable option and thoroughly deserves its positive reputation. [Rob]
Friday evening’s Whissendine 6ix saw an army of Striders (and soon to be Striders) turn up in both running and supporting capacities. The race had several drop-outs last year as the date coincided with the annual Rainbows 100-lap challenge, but with no fixture clash this year there was a fine attendance. A fantastic course starts off uphill with a signpost saying “Highest Point” featuring quite early on – raising you emotionally to your “Highest Point” for the race as surely it is “all downhill from here!” This false placed confidence is quickly highlighted when, at halfway, there is another sign which states “Lowest Point” – again, this sign was indicative of both geographical and emotional states!
There were some interestingly placed distance markers along the route with all competitors beating their 5k PBs by about half a mile (5k sign at 2.65 miles), however, the overall distance was accurate.
A tough course, with two challenging hills in the last two miles, finishes off with a sharp downhill sprint across the finish line – which was crossed by Darren Glover in a fantastic time of 39.20 (12th overall). Next Strider across the line was Luke Eggleston in 40.22 (17th) closely followed by a Vibram-clad Shane Sharkey in 21st place (40.57). Clive Kent was next back (41.38 – 25th) followed by a Striders Quartet of Ben Pickard (44.38 – 45th), Nicholas Smith (44.47 – 46th), Tam Nicol (45.01 – 47th) and Matt White (45.03 – 48th). Tony Allen completed in 48.15 before Max Houghton – under the watchful eye of Dad John – got back in 52.04 beating John Hudson in 52.40 and Celina Silver (55.50). They were followed by another Striders Trio (you know how we like to hunt in packs….) Holly Houghton was masterfully paced around by mum Louise to “get under the hour” in 59.28 with Laura Pickard close behind in 59.37. Completing the Striders contingent – watched closely by super-coach Rob Beers – was Stuart Gergory in 1.01.59.
The race is completed by all finishers receiving a beer brewed at the ever popular Grainstore brewery along with a commemorative Whissendine 6ix glass. Across the road from the finish line at the White Lion pub there was a band playing in the beer garden under a marquee which was amply surrounded by BBQ burger stands and a Hog Roast. A true village fete atmosphere to it. Despite being the worst thing to happen to grammar since 5ive topped the charts, the Whissendine 6ix is certainly a highlight of the summer racing calendar. [Shane]
The ever popular Swithland 6 marked the start of the LRRL summer season. A contingent of eight Striders made there way to the race start and, with near perfect runner conditions, Jay Barton made the most of things and was first Strider home in 34.45, and finished 21st overall. Darren Glover was next in 38.45 for 84th place overall, followed by a fantastic performance from Luke Eggleston for 40.08 (111th overall and 4th junior male) and Andy Nicholls in 42.09 (184th).
Louise Houghton was first Female Strider in 47.38 for 348th overall and was followed in around 9 minutes later by Steph Barlow (in her debut league race for the club) and Tam Nicol both in 56.59 (561st and 562nd). Last Strider to cross the finish line was Stuart Gregory 1.03.28 636th overall.