……is not something you will often read on a list of half marathon pre-race instructions. But, if you want to run the Lundy Island Race, you’d better be sure to get to Ilfracombe in time for the boat that transports runners to the race start. Paul Edrich and Nicola Wood did exactly that on Sunday and here Nicola tells us about their very long day.
“Back in the good old days of 2019 we were waiting online for the 2020 PureTrail Lundy Island Half Marathon tickets to be released. Capacity is limited by the ferry to the island, so the 250 tickets sell out in minutes…but we got them!! And then waited through 2 years of deferrals…and, in my case, a few health issues and injuries which meant my fitness was not quite what it was when we booked.” “Fast forward to July 2022 and the day finally arrived. And it was a scorcher!! The event starts with the ferry leaving Ilfracombe at 09:00 for the 2 hour trip to Lundy. Plenty of time to spot dolphins and chat with other runners and watch the Island get closer. On arrival there is a steep walk up to the registration and start, with changing inside the church.”
“The race got underway at 12:15. Not an ideal time on such a hot day!! The mandatory kit requirements of trail shoes, a head covering and the ability to carry some water soon became very necessary. There is absolutely no shade on Lundy…I think I counted 3 trees during the whole run!” “For a small 3-mile Island, Lundy packs in a lot of variety in terms of terrain. Gravel, grass, rocks, granite slabs, goat tracks, sheer drops, steps…not a single paved section. Stunning views and wildlife…including a basking shark!” “A fairly easy undulating first 5k up the middle of the Island lulls you into a false sense of security. The following 5k down the Eastern side was very technical…with continual negotiation of rocks and climbs on a very narrow path above a sheer drop. Impossible to find a rhythm and a lot of walking in stifling temperatures. At mile 5 I was seriously thinking I would just walk the rest of the way!!” “But after the second feed stop at 10k we headed back up the Western side of the Island and moved onto broader open tracks. There was a nice breeze and I got back into a run/walk routine and the miles started to tick by. Before I knew it I was at the top end again and turning back down the middle of the Island for the last 5k. By that point everybody around me was walking up even the slightest incline…the heat and terrain had really taken it out of people. The finishing times of the winners demonstrate why it has the deserved reputation as a “challenging” event!” “Paul had run his own race, being so much faster and fitter than me and, after he had drunk his own body weight in water and coke at the finish, came to find me and ran with me for the last half mile. And I finally got my Puffin medal!!”
“There was food and drink available in the pub and shop, and time for a cooling dip in the sea before heading back to the ferry for a 18:30 departure back to Ilfracombe.” “An amazing event over a full day…the organisation, marshalling, feed points and route marking were all superb. But I did find myself longing for a nice bit of drizzle and flat tarmac at a few points!”
Great results for Nicola and Paul and some brilliant memories from what sounds like a truly unique half marathon. There might be some more people joining that queue for places.
10th July, The Lundy Island Race, 13.1 miles, trail
1 Jamie Howard (South West Road Runners) 1.47.50 chip time
31 Paul Edrich (Cirencester AC) 2.25.43
130 Nicola Wood 3.16.21
On Friday evening Neil Morrissey ran another impressive 10k on Wiltshire country lanes. The Langley Burrell Lightning Bolt Fast 10k is a DBMax event and the second in a series of three, the final one taking place on 27th August.
8th July, Langley Burrell, Lightning Bolt Fast 10k, 10k, road
1 William Trew (Swindon Harriers) 34.18 (34.18)
43 Neil Morrissey (Cirencester AC) 45.55 (45.54)
Of note amongst all the usual great parkrun results, Keith Firkin ran very well at Lydiard. Brecht Grieten headed up a good group of club members at Cirencester with a third place finish. Neil Morrissey ran his 60th parkrun at Witney. At Tetbury they were back on the out and back Route B and Ollie Campbell took first place.
9th July, parkrun, 5k trail
1 Michael Gilbert (Unattached) 17.10
33 Keith Firkin (Cirencester AC) 21.26
70 David Moss 24.25
1 Dom Willmore (Unattached) 16.48
3 Brecht Grieten (Cirencester AC) 19.43
49 Gordon Jones 26.27
59 Brendan Mccarthy 27.57
73 Pamela Wheeler 29.09
83 Ruth Fulford 30.27
98 Lorna Harris 34.09
99 Brian Harris 34.11
1 Chris Milbourne (Unattached) 18.13
29 Neil Morrissey (Cirencester AC) 22.47
Tetbury Goods Shed parkrun
1 Ollie Campbell (Cirencester AC) 17.46
21 Alan Mcadam 24.26
34 Rachel Mcadam 26.10
59 Peter Rowland 30.01
The full set of results from the Cotswold Way relay became available after last weeks report and Martin has updated the results page on the website. Take a look and see just what a great team effort was involved, all brought together by Aaron. The sum of all those individual efforts on the day, and checking out of routes before the day, culminated in a set of achievements to be very proud of.
Following the Bourton Mile race last week, Brian has updated the leader board for the Club Road Racing Championship. For those interested, you can find it under the heading ‘Racing’ on the club website.
There are plenty of races left in the schedule where you could earn points and join the competition, and there's something for everyone distance wise.
Cirencester parkrun, 13th August
Cotswold Classic 10 miles, 3rd September
Cricklade 10k, 2nd October
Stroud Half Marathon, 23rd October
Guy Fawkes 5 miles, 6th November
any marathon by 6th November
As ever, please remember to send details of your races to Rachel at firstname.lastname@example.org for inclusion in the report.