HRRL Ryde 10 mile and the Bramley 20 mile
HRRL Ryde 10 mile
The weather was bitterly cold but the blue skies lifted spirits and there was a buzz of excitement on the busy 9:15am catamaran ferry link between Portsmouth and Ryde, Isle of Wight. This was the annual Hampshire Road League trip “overseas” to the Ryde 10 mile race. The Farnham Runners contingent pictured bravely smiling, despite the chill wind, with a palm tree and the sea in the background, look as if on a jolly to a tropical island.
Fourteen Farnham Runners completed the challenging route, eight men and six ladies. This year the course included a delightful new section around St. Helen’s Duver and up through Nodes Point Holiday Park. This further enhanced to scenic nature of the course, although it added to the number of hills the runners had to tackle and had an impact on times. Nevertheless two from Farnham achieved personal best times and for two it was their first ten miler.
James Clarke was first back for the local club in an excellent 1 hour one minute 47 seconds, in 19th place of 459 finishers, 13th senior man. Andrew Ellison in a new age category was rewarded with the second place prize for 1:03:04. Next Harvey Wickham confirmed his value to the team in 1:08:45, while Michael Stephens was final A squad scorer with a PB 1:12:31. Fourth on the day, they are hopeful of promotion, in second slot with five events to go.
Enjoying racing again came Stephen Murphy in 1:18:24, who fended off a late surge from men’s road captain John Phillips, back from injury in 1:18:54. Kevin Laurie raced to a new PB of 1:19:58, followed by Stuart Laurie in 1:23:46. This B team came a useful fourth in B Division Two and they stay top on aggregate.
Not challenged for the first Farnham ladies’ spot was Eloise Stradling in a fine 1:14:37, 6th senior lady. Next Linda Tyler (1:22:24) and Anne Snelson (1:22:54) both ranked third in their categories to complete the A score for sixth on the day, keeping them a safe eighth of ten clubs in the top flight.
Tina Harrison (1:46:06), Jackie Wilkinson (1:48:21, debut) and Chris Chapman (2:04:31, debut) made a very valuable contribution to the “B” tally raising them to tenth of fifteen clubs in B Division One on aggregate after an eighth slot on the day.
Bramley 20 mile
In similar chilly, breezy but sunny weather the following week six Farnham Runners including some who ran at Ryde tackled the Bramley 20 miler as part of their marathon training. They were Harvey Wickham 2:33:07, Lindsay Bamford 2:56:08, Linda Tyler 2:58:11, Keith Marshall 3:02:30, Stuart Laurie 3:03:14, Kevin Laurie 3:03:15, while Bob Brimicombe ran the 10 miler in 1:10:10.