Ellie Bithell wins 3rd place trophy in Lavenham Old Railway 10K

Lavenham Old Railway 10K, Lavenham, Suffolk, Sun 29th Jan: Four Joggers had a go at this scenic 10K trail race, which turned out to be about 10.6km according to GPS readings. In top form was Phil Blundell M45 (54:11, 18th of 156 runners overall), closely followed by Ellie Bithell F45 (54:34, 3rd F of 94). This was a great run by Ellie, winning a trophy for 3rd placed female. Then came Sarah Last F50 (1:17:51, 67th F) and Gillian Green F60 (1:32:26, 87th F) putting in their usual big efforts. There were no age group categories in this race.


Above from top left clockwise: Ellie Bithell with trophy; Ellie Bithell and Phil Blundell; Lavenham Church, nearby; Gillian Green and Sarah Last. Many thanks for the Strava photos.


South of England AA XC Championships, Sat 28th Jan: Three Newmarket Joggers made the trip to Beckenham Place Park in Kent for the South of England Main XC Championships. Official results are not yet out and times given are from the runners’ own watches. The standard of running was extremely high. First Jogger home in the men’s senior 15km race was Mark Hayward M40 (53:48, 143rd of ~700 overall), followed not far behind by Jimmy Smith M40 (55:33), both putting in big efforts against many runners over 20 years younger. In the women’s senior 8km race, Sarah Osborne (35:04, 190th of ~400 overall) put in a game performance. There were no 40+ (masters or veterans) age group competitions in this event; those were held in a separate event last December. We didn’t have enough runners to enter a men’s or women’s team, which would have required 6 men or 4 women. The distance appeared to be a little short going by GPS data, estimated at 14.4km (men) and 7.4km (women), relevant only in age grade % calculations for our club achievement tables.

Above left: Jimmy Smith, Mark Hayward and Sarah Osborne at the South of England XC Champs; above right: Jimmy Smith in action during the race (note classic form: head high, arms and shoulders relaxed; bent knee leads into forward stride).


Zig Zag ‘Windmill Way Wander’ Half Marathon, Barrow, Sat 28th Jan: Caroline Mcintosh F70 (2:41:04, 49th of 57) put in another of her Zig Zag training races, in preparation for the Tokyo Marathon on March 5th. She kept an even pace of ~12 min/mi in this race, giving her every confidence for her marathon challenge in March. She has been totally focused on the final leg of her Six Major Marathon target, having already completed New York City (2015), London (2017), Berlin (2018), Chicago (2019) and Boston (2022).

Caroline Mcintosh, all smiles in a Zig Zag multi-lap Brandon Country Park race last November. Thanks to Caroline for photo.

HYROX PRO, Manchester, Sat 28th Jan: Ben Blowes came a very respectable 48th of 97 overall, in a time of 1:23:28 and 3rd of 5 in his 50-54 age group. This event was a test of body strength and power, involving pulling and pushing heavy carts along rails, rowing machine tasks, weight lifting repetitions and doing a required number of burpees, squats, push-ups etc., as quickly as possible.