The Highs and Lows of Running

Updated: Apr 5

The weekend saw club members achieving great things up and down the country on very varied terrain.



On a cool sunny day in Manchester there were mixed fortunes for Cirencester marathon runners. Proof, if ever it were needed, of just how unpredictable endurance running can be. Sadly, Nick Wall had to make the sensible decision to pull out of the race at 12 miles as he, very unexpectedly, suffered a calf injury. In hot of the press news though he has announced that he has already taken advantage of a discounted entry for 2023! We wish Nick a speedy recovery.


First home was Paul Edrich who ran a splendid new 3.46 PB having set himself a target of 3.45 – 3.50. Spot on Paul!


Not far behind Paul was Rachel Ranger making her fourth attempt at a sub 4 hour finish. She had never missed it by very much but had almost put the dream aside once more after a few setbacks in her training. However, it was definitely her day. A superb run with every mile at pretty much the same pace saw her cross the line in 3.57.50. Her achievement is, of course, down to her hard work but she also credits “Martin’s advice, different shoes, Nicola’s spectator support and knowing my team mates were somewhere on the course with me.” We all want a pair of those shoes! Huge congratulations to Rachel.



Liza Darroch, accompanied by Martin Croucher completing marathon number 115, finished in 5.17. The event was an England Athletics Masters qualifying race, the qualifying standard for Liza’s V70 age group being 5:15. Unfortunately Liza has been suffering lots of problems with her back of late and found the race very tough going from the half way point. Her finishing time was however only a few minutes outside the 2nd, 3rd and 4th place finishers in her age group. There can be little doubt that she would have qualified had she not been dealing with those physical issues. Prior to yesterday, her most recent marathon finish was 4:30. She is of course very philosophical about her experience and taking away some positives as she thinks about what to tackle next.



3rd April, Therme Manchester Marathon - 26.2 miles road

1 Fraser Stewart (Cambuslang Harriers) 2.18.40

5173 Paul Edrich (Cirencester AC) 3.46.02

6706 Rachel Ranger 3.57.50

12631 Martin Croucher 5.17.22

12632 Liza Darroch 5.17.22

14170 finished




Rupert Chesmore, Holly Willis and Alex Banks also travelled north to take on incredibly tough challenges in the Lakes Traverse and Northern Traverse races.


Holly and Alex completed the Lakes Traverse. Holly kindly fills us in on their adventure.


“The Lakes Traverse starts on the beach at St Bees and traverses the Lake District to finish at Shap. It is 97km long and has 3500m of ascent with a good amount of runnable sections between the four major climbs.”



“Alex and I had entered the 2021 edition, so have had a bonus 12 months to prepare – it was well worth the wait though! The weather was perfect – clear, cool and sunny with a dusting of snow on the higher ground.”



“The intention was never to push too hard, as Alex is deep into his training for a Bob Graham attempt in June, so we set out near the back and ran our own race. We had an amazing day out and finished, smiling, in 15 hours 44 minutes. We were surprised to finish in 26th and 27th place and even more surprised when I was handed the trophy for 3rd female!”


“Overall, it is an incredible event, highly recommended. What was even more incredible was to see and speak to those doing the Northern Traverse, St Bees all the way across to Robin Hoods Bay!”


One of those people was our very own Rupert Chesmore. At the time of writing Rupert was beginning his journey home having made the difficult, but right for him, decision to withdraw from the race. Having covered a gruelling 140 of the 190 miles of the route, the pain he was suffering in his feet became too much.



Along the way Rupert dealt with brutal terrain, night running and the freezing cold temperatures that accompany it, lack of sleep, broken equipment and the challenges of fuelling on the move to name but a few.


Friends and family followed his progress online and Liza awaited daily update phone calls from him.


His adventure deserves better coverage but, until he is home and recovered and able to share more details, we will all just have to imagine what he has endured.


He may initially be disappointed at not reaching Robin Hoods Bay, but should be very, very proud of his achievement.


2nd April, Silva Lakes Traverse - 100km trail and


1 Daniel Weller 11.05.46

26 Alex Banks (Cirencester AC) 15.43.45

27 Holly Willis 15.43.49 - 3rd female

128 finished


2nd to 6th April, Silva Northern Traverse – 300km trail


1 Kim Collison 44.24.30

(at the time of writing the race continues)




Dave Bell had a brilliant run in the Reading Half Marathon finishing in 28th place overall. Despite what he refers to as a “tough patch” around miles 9 and 10, he maintained his target pace to finish in 1.13.10. Also there were Jill Hadland and David Moss who both had fine runs to finish in 1.48.



3rd April, Reading Half Marathon - 13.1 miles road

1 James Connor (Havering AC) 1.05.58

28 David Bell (Cirencester AC) 1.13.10

1196 Jill Hadland 1.48.21

1198 David Moss 1.48.21

3602 finished

Tom Morgan took to the trails of the countryside around Guildford to complete The Fox Ultra, a 62km route that he has tackled before, most recently in September of last year. The weather was beautiful, a very cold start followed by blazing sun and some snow too.


Tom really enjoyed the day, taking 53 minutes off his finish time from last year and reinforcing his love of trail running.


2nd April, The Fox Ultra - 62km trail

1 Ben Goddard (Woking AC) 4.30.56

103 Tom Morgan (Cirencester AC) 8.01.41

149 finished

In parkrun news this week Ollie Campbell took 2nd place at Coventry. Wendy Nicholls was 1st lady at Tetbury.

2nd April, parkrun - 5km trail

Coventry parkrun

1 Dominic Evans (Unattached) 16.33

2 Ollie Campbell (Cirencester AC) 17.19

447 finished

Cirencester parkrun

1 Louis Sharrock (Unattached) 18.31

20 Gordon Jones (Cirencester AC) 25.26

24 Brendan McCarthy 26.43

26 Dorian Matts 26.58

36 Samantha Timms 29.12

78 Pamela Wheeler (tail walker) 53.26

78 finished

Tetbury Goods Shed parkrun

1 Robert Deller (Unattached) 18.12

11 Wendy Nicholls (Cirencester AC) 21.31 - 1st female

27 Alan Mcadam 24.28

37 Rachel Mcadam 25.57

107 finished



As if all that news wasn’t enough, lastly a piece of important club admin. A message from Rachel Ranger who will be back to earth with a bump and dealing with club membership renewals. Rachel says,


“Membership renewal invoices have been sent out to Seniors (1st April). I am aware that some members names have dropped off the England Athletics system that I use for membership management. There doesn’t seem to be a particular reason for this so don’t worry, but if you were expecting an invoice and didn’t receive one, please email me with your full name and date of birth (so I can retrieve your details).”


“Payment requests usually include the fee for EA affiliation. If you do not wish to be affiliated, and therefore require your invoice to be changed, please email me.”


You can contact Rachel at membership.cirenac.gmail.com


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