Jimmy Smith makes top three in Fen Gallop 10K

Fen Gallop 10K, Sunday 4th July: Jimmy Smith put in a great run in the annual Fen Gallop 10K, clocking 35:33, to finish 3rd of 288 runners overall. It was his first 10K race of the year and earns him 78.57% diamond age grade. Next came Clive Purbrook (M65), with an excellent effort of 50:15 (68.42%, gold), putting him 77th overall; just short of his 49:50 at Oundle earlier in the year. Hard-working Clive has raced every week for a month or two, sometimes twice, and shows no signs of slowing down. Third Jogger to finish was Jo Blackstock in a time of 56:53, 25th of 107 F; an encouraging performance in what appears to be her first official competitive race since 2018, although she has been taking part in lots of virtual club races over the past year of course. Caroline Mcintosh (F65, 1:11:56, 100th F, 61.59%, silver) was 4th Jogger home, her second race in successive days, following her trail 10K at High Lodge (Thetford Forest) on Saturday July 3rd, where she clocked 1:13:52 in the Suffolk Trail Running Festival, over a tough, undulating, wooded route. There were no proper age groups in the Fen Gallop, just under 50s and over 50s, which takes us back to bygone years. Caroline will be heading for the Asics London 10K on July 25th and the London Landmarks HM on August 1st… AND… the London Big Half on August 22nd. That’s an almighty schedule! Hopefully her main target, the Tokyo Marathon, will eventually become a reality, after a number of frustrating postponements due to Covid-19.

Suffolk Trail Running Festival, Saturday/Sunday July 3rd/4th: This event was organised by Raw Trails at High Lodge for the first time, having started originally on an estate near Clare in Suffolk. As well as the 10K single lap trail race reported above, there were options of running as many 5-mile trail laps as possible in 6 hours, 12 hours or 24 hours, individually or in relays. Malcolm Osbourn (M70) and Stuart Janes (M50) opted for the 6 hour individual challenge, while Lisa Jennings (F45) bravely took on the 24 hour challenge. Starting at about 2:00pm on Saturday, Malcolm managed to complete 5 laps just inside 6 hours in a time of 5:58:57 (25 miles), his longest ever competitive run, over difficult, energy-sapping terrain. If each lap had been 5.25 miles it would have been a marathon….maybe a good idea to add a little distance on for those who would like to test themselves over a marathon, without going 30 miles, as well as attract the many aspiring 100 marathon club members. Suffolk Running Centre in Barrow makes one lap equal to 6.55 miles (= a quarter marathon), so that 2 laps equals a half marathon and 4 laps a full marathon. Stuart also put in a great effort, completing 4 laps in 5:31:08 (20 miles) in his first competitive event for some years. Lisa faced a gruesome 24 hour challenge, starting at midday on the Saturday and carrying on all through the night until midday Sunday. She managed an impressive 10 laps (50 miles) in a time of 22:42:50, which likely included some hours of necessary sleep time.

Walsham le Willows 5M, Sunday 4th Jul: Alan Thornhill (M70) took on this 5 mile race and clocked a very decent 50:21 (Strava time), his first attempt at the distance this year, maybe for the NJ Friday 5 entry. The event was helping to raise funds for a local school.

Outlaw Holkham 10K, Saturday July 3rd: Formerly known simply as the Holkham 10K, this race appears to have been taken under the wing of, or sponsored by, the Outlaw Triathlon organisation, which puts on a triathlon event over the same weekend (see below). Three Joggers took part in this race. Marc Walker was first Jogger home in a time of 53:26, 129th of 399 runners overall, 18th of 35 in M50. This fine effort was Marc’s first known official race for the Joggers and his first real event this year. Then came Miles Johnson (54:12, 141st, 5th M65), an excellent effort, especially on this undulating terrain, earning himself 65.31% age grade (club Gold standard). Miles was unfortunate to be up against some very fast rivals in his age group on this occasion. Third Jogger home was Mary Marsh (1:09:19, 167th F, 5th F65), again a great effort for her age group at 62.88% (Silver) but up against some unusually fast opponents. There were obviously very few fun runners in this race.

Outlaw Holkham 1.2M: Two Junior Newmarket Joggers did very well in this race: Alexander Walker finished 14th of 118 in a time of 8:37 and Alexander Balmer 15th in 8:40. These are quick times, representing about 7:15/mile pace; well done to both.

Outlaw Half  Triathlon (Individual, 113km), Saturday July 3rd: Jogger Jackie Henley (representing Newmarket Cycling & Triathlon Club as a triathlete) put in a courageous effort in this high class field. The race consisted of 1.9km swim, 90km cycle and 21.1km run (= half marathon). She finished in a total time of 7:46:18, 287th of 329 female triathletes, 17 of whom failed to complete the course; a great accomplishment. Her best performance was definitely in the cycling stage, which she completed in 3:27:20, 15th of 28 in F55. Her half marathon time was 3:01:52, putting her 25th. It’s difficult enough, without doing a 90km cycle race immediately beforehand.

Outlaw Half Triathlon (Relay, 113km): Mark Hayward again paired successfully with his brother James Hayward, with their team ‘Leg Ends’ representing Ipswich Triathlon Club. James took on the bike ride while Mark did the swim and the run. They finished in an impressive 4:18:21, to come 2nd of 70 relay teams overall. Their individual leg times were: Swim 36:01 (21st), Bike: 2:18:58 (3rd), Run: 1:21:16 (2nd). This excellent result comes just 2 weeks after they finished 2nd of 30 in the Outlaw Triathlon Relay at Holme Pierrepont in Nottingham.