Jimmy Smith takes 3rd place in Stour Valley Path 100K

SVP100/50: On Saturday 12th August, 93 runners gathered at the Memorial Hall in Newmarket for the start of the annual Stour Valley Path ~100km ultramarathon trail race (SVP100), which roughly followed the course of the river for some 103km (64 mi), from its source near Newmarket to the end point near Manningtree on the Essex coast, passing right through the heart of Constable country. There was also a ~50km option (SVP50), starting at the halfway point in Sudbury with checkpoints approximately every 15km along the whole route.


Jimmy Smith in the Newmarket Memorial Hall, early on Saturday morning, kitted out for the SVP100. Many thanks for the photo.

Newmarket Jogger Jimmy Smith (10:42:38, 3rd of 70 finishers overall, 2nd of 12 in M40-44) achieved a podium finish in the SVP100, recording the best time by any Newmarket Jogger since the race began in 2013. He was well supported by his wife Nicole, acting as his ‘crew’ member. Jimmy has been putting in many hundreds of miles of off-road training this year and has competed at a high level in a number of trail races in recent months, including the Wendover Woods 50K Ultra, so was very well prepared for this race.


Jimmy Smith and ‘crew’ Nicole Smith at the finish after the race, with 3rd place trophy. Many thanks for the photo.


Joggers Marc Drury (5:45:23, 29th of 139 overall, 1st of 13 in M50-55) and his wife Angela Drury (7:34:43, 33rd F of 47, 4th of 8 in F40-44) entered the SVP50 as their first ever ultramarathon race and both successfully completed the course, with Marc doing particularly well in his age group. They will both have learnt a lot from their experience in this race and can be proud of their achievement.

See at end of article below: Previous NJ results in the SVP100 & SVP50.


Above left: Angela Drury with SVP50 medal after the race; above right: A well deserved drink and medal for Marc Drury. Many thanks for the photos.


Colchester Friday Night Races (including elite runners and incorporating the Essex County Championships): On Friday evening 11th August, Mark Hayward (16:14, 30th of 340 overall, 3rd of 30 in M40-44) set a new all-time PB (by 9 seconds) in this highly competitive 5K race in Colchester. Also running in this race was Rebecca Oettle (21:46, 54th F of 107, 29th of 44 in F18-39), near her best form this year.


Mark Hayward in action this year. Many thanks for the Strava photo.

Newark Half Marathon: On Sunday 13th August, Mark Hayward (1:13:03, 12th of 703 overall, 2nd of 74 in M40-44) travelled to Lincolnshire and set another new PB (by 3 seconds) in the Newark Half Marathon. He certainly seems to be in his prime and has clocked up a seemingly endless stream of PBs over the last few years.


SVP100 and SVP50: Previous results for Newmarket Joggers.

2022 SVP100: Jonathan Pye 14:23:57, 17th of 87 finishers; SVP50: Chris Underwood 6:27:32, 21st of 114.

2020 SVP50: Paul Holley 4:42:08, 12th of 189.

2018 SVP100: Martyn Taylor 11:37:08, 17th of 139; SVP50: Gillian Green 8:35:54, 119th of 133 overall, 68th F of 77; Isobel Vicente DNF.

2016 SVP100: Martyn Taylor DNF; Kevin Connolly DNF.

2015 SVP100: Martyn Taylor 11:37:36, 17th of 168; Kevin Connolly 12:22:25, 30th.

2013 SVP100: Alan Shand 12:58:20, 16th of 94; Kevin Connolly 13:19:25, 20th.

Best ever recorded times:

SVP100 Male: 2020 Chris Kelly (Vegan Runners) 8:09:19.

SVP50 Male: 2020 Pete Dyson (Victoria Park Harriers) 3:56:39.

SVP100 Female: 2020 Alice Mcgushin (Clapham Chasers) 10:37:19.

SVP50 Female: 2020 Johanna Oregan (St Neots Riverside Runners) 4:42:55.


2020 must have been a very good year, apart from Covid…seems a miracle it went ahead in August that year.