Suffolk XC Winter League, Woodbridge, Sunday 4th December: Great news is that Caroline Mcintosh and Paul Holley have secured wins in the Newmarket Joggers women’s and men’s Grand Prix 2022, for which the Woodbridge XC was the final fixture. This year, the NJ Grand Prix consisted of four of the summer Hockeys 5k League fixtures and the two Suffolk Winter League XC fixtures at Framlingham and Woodbridge. Suzanne Bailey and Olivia Carter take the women’s 2nd and 3rd place trophies, while Jimmy Smith and Mark Hayward take 2nd and 3rd place trophies for the men. Exact points scores will depend on the official time results. In the women’s Grand Prix, Suzanne Bailey was flying high during the summer, until a hip injury frustratingly kept her out of the final two fixtures.
Woodbridge XC Results: Preliminary results for our teams, with GPS times where known, are available for the 2nd XC fixture of the winter season at the village of Sutton, near Woodbridge. We don’t yet know where we stand in relation to other clubs in the competition. Newmarket Joggers (NJ) combine with Sudbury Joggers (SJ) in this league to form club N&S. For this GPS-estimated 4.6-mile (7.4km) trail race, N&S had 11 female runners and 15 male runners out of a total field of slightly over 400.
The top N&S women’s ‘A’ team of 4 (decided on finishing order) was: Sarah Osborne NJ 173rd overall; Olivia Carter NJ 34:50, 191st; Sally Ann Bowen SJ 204th; Ruth Bell NJ 40:28, 295th. The women’s ‘B’ team of 4: Belinda Schofield NJ 301st, Ruth Cowlin SJ 42:06, 319th; Angela Drury NJ 43:32, 343rd; Jan Holmes NJ 46:52, 374th. The women’s incomplete ‘C’ team of 3: Sophie Adams NJ 379th; Angela Brennan NJ 49:28, 387th; Caroline Mcintosh NJ 52:05, 398th.
The top men’s ‘A’ team of 7 was: Mark Hayward NJ 26:19, 7th overall; James Smith NJ 27:08, 11th; Joey Bendall NJ 27:23, 15th; Paul Holley NJ 23rd; Chris Underwood NJ 30:31, 68th; Marc Drury NJ 33:53, 154th; Andy Buck SJ 159th. The men’s ‘B’ team of 7: Daniel Tee NJ 160th; Neville Clarke NJ 183rd; Tom Elton NJ 248th; Rob Hawkins NJ 38:53, 268th; Brian Munns NJ 289th; Jim Withers NJ 348th; Malcolm Osbourn NJ 373rd. Incomplete men’s ‘C’ team: Chris Aylmer NJ 50:02, 388th. Many thanks to all who took part and helped out on the day.
Valencia Marathon, Sunday 4th December: A huge field of 22,018 turned out for this marathon, on a cool (11°C), clear morning, with very little wind. The route led through the city streets, showcasing the impressive ancient and modern architecture of Valencia. Andy Fryatt put in a great effort to finish in 3:50:28, 13,693rd overall and 579th of 1,477 in his M55 age group, not far from his 3:45:23 PB at Milton Keynes earlier this year. Interestingly, there were only 4,261 female runners in the race; less than 20% of the total, suggesting that distance running might not be as popular for women in Spain as it is in the UK. However, the time limit for all finishers was a strict 5:30:00, which would have deterred many of the slower runners, fun runners and charity fundraisers you get in the typical UK marathon.
Above top: Andy Fryatt sight-seeing in Valencia the day before. Immediately above: After his successful marathon on Sunday.
St Edmunds Trail Half, Marathon & Ultra 50km, Ickworth Park, Bury St Edmunds, Sunday 4th December: Official results are not yet out, but we know that Joe Cormack was among 134 who entered the 50km race. On a very hilly route with over 1,600 ft of climb, Joe was going comfortably to halfway but had to dig deep in the end. He bravely made it to the finish in 5:50:38 (own time), a big ask only three weeks after his previous 50km race at Brandon Country Park.
BEN BLOWES 100 4 OLLIE: Newmarket Jogger Ben Blowes staged a big charity run in Newmarket over the weekend, helping to raise money for the Liam Fairhurst Foundation, based in Soham, which supports those with special needs, such as local 16-year-old Ollie Duell, who sadly died last December of his medical conditions. From 12 noon Friday 2nd December to 12 noon Saturday 3rd, Ben ran 100 miles in 24 x 4.2-mile laps, every hour on the hour, from Tesco Superstore on Willie Snaith Road, around a loop along Fordham Road, Exning Road and the High Street. Many supporters in the local area ran laps with Ben, including members of our club. At the time of writing, he had raised over £10,000, compared with an original target of £2,500, so a phenomenal fundraising effort.