Author Archives: Andy

Oakley 20 – 2017

By Kate Johnson

Oakley 20 is not my favourite race by a long shot, but I wanted to do another 20 mile race in the run up to London. It was on the right weekend for me, 3 weeks out and 4 weeks after my last 20 miler at MK.

The last time I ran this race it was 2014 and I was preparing for my first Marathon. I struggled to cover the distance and finished in 3:59:57, the marshals were trying to take me out of the race from about 17 miles, as they thought I wouldn’t finish. All in all a pretty soul destroying experience. read more

Sandy 10 – 2017

‘Have you ever run the Sandy 10?’ Susan asked me on a cold February Sunday, I looked at her, wondering if this was one of those loaded questions that mothers usually ask. ‘No, I haven’t’ I replied. ‘I think we should run it’ she responded. I raised my eye brow and gave her the ‘do-you-think-that-is-a-good-idea’ look.

Fast forward to the end of March and to mother’s day, which dawned very sunny with a chilly wind, when we found our selves driving over to Sandy. Susan was busy plotting her race strategy, working out if she was wearing the right kit and I was feeling like I had lost far more than an hour’s sleep. read more

The Grizzly

By Chris George

It was my second time at the Grizzly 20 miler down in Seaton (Devon) after racing last year for the first time and enjoying it so much. I entered the ballot again for 2017 and was lucky enough to get a place.

So what’s it all about “Twentyish muddy, hilly, boggy, beachy miles of the multiest-terrain running experience you will find this side of the end of time” is the quote on the website, and to be fair that’s pretty accurate

The Grizzly has over 3,500ft of ascent in its 20 miles; there are two sections of beach, totalling close to 2 miles; 2 bogs and the infamous “Stairway to Heaven”, a steep path up the side of a cliff.  The pre-race advice is that it will take roughly your road marathon time, perhaps longer if conditions are grim. read more

2017 UK Inter-Counties XC Championships

By Rob Elmore

The last cross country race of the season (unless you’re young enough to be at the English schools or good enough to represent Great Britain at the World Cross Country Championships in Uganda!), were the British Inter-Counties Cross Country Championships which took place at Prestwold Hall, just outside Loughborough, this weekend.

For those not familiar with this event, the Inter-Counties is a chance for the top runners in each county to compete against each other. Selection is based on your positioning at regional county championships and/or your cross country performances during the season. Ideally 9 runners are selected for each county, however, due to injuries/illness this isn’t always possible. read more

The Sea Lion Who Avoided the Water

As the MK Festival of Running approached I kept checking the weather in the week prior and each time I looked it had got worse and worse. This was not a good omen, combined with the gift of a chest infection from my husband it is safe to say I was not looking forward to this race one bit.

As I drove to MK it was pouring with rain and I was utterly miserable, my cough meant I was barking like a sea lion from Whipsnade. It was so bad that my mother had kindly renamed me ‘Samantha the Sea lion’.

My only ambition was to finish and to be honest I was gutted, I wanted to see something for all the marathon training I’d been doing. As we got to the snow dome I was convinced that I was wearing all the wrong kit. I get very hot when I run, but seeing Amy Inchley wearing a jacket, headband and ¾ length tights, I was terrified that I would just freeze. I had a black bin bag fashioned into a dress for the start line just to keep the edge off. read more

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