Race Results 2017

Club members please send your race results via

11th Nov - Belton House Parkrun Belton, Grantham, Lincolnshire, Multi-Terrain.  **NEW**

The Club was represented at Belton Parkrun by Clare Bergner and Jayne MacArthur who regular volunteers at this event and by Jackie Crossland and Shaun Louth who both ran this week. This was Jackie's first ever Parkrun and the times were as follows Jackie Crossland 34:41 and Shaun Louth 39:35.

Thanks to Shaun Louth for his Report.

1st Nov - The World Vegan Day Challenge Dover, Kent, Multi-Terrain. 

Hosted by Saxons, Normans and Vikings Running

I yet again hit the road and travelled south all the way down to Dover for my latest challenge. Race organisers were very fortunate to have been granted permission to hold a 6 hour challenge at Samphire Hoe. A nature reserve created from 4.9 million cubic metres of chalk marl from the Channel Tunnel excavations on the coast of Kent near Dover. The event was a 6 hour challenge where you complete as many 3.75 mile loops as you can in the time frame. The course is a mix of very high quality gently rolling trail, bike paths and a nice dead flat sea wall, quite literally all within the shadow of the famous White Cliffs of Dover, there was plenty of wild life to keep an eye out for, you can also see what's going on at both Dover and Folkestone Harbours, there was plenty of ships to see and some trains to spot too for good measure! Allegedly if it's clear you can even see France!

I completed 3 laps which was 11.5 miles. As always the bling and goody bag was amazing too.

Thanks to Shaun Louth for his Report.

28th Oct - Brooks Snowdonia Marathon Eryri Wales, Road & Trail.  **NEW**

Organised by Eryri Cyf (non-profit Organisation)

This is by far the most beautiful Marathon I have ever done! This year was the second year for me and again it did not disappoint. It's by far the toughest of Marathons I've completed and rates itself as the hardest Road Marathon in Europe, which I can believe! Regrettably my running buddy, Clare Bergner (Fluffy) had to pull out of the race just a few days before due to health reasons, however I was delighted she was still coming with me and even drove me there.

We woke up early on race day morning and headed to the nearest carpark and had breakfast close to the start line. Around 9.45am Fluffy headed on up through the mountains and provided invaluable support the whole way round, I really struggled for the first 13 miles and kept asking her to get the car - I wanted out. But NO... she continued to supply me with encouragement and apples/chocolate and POM Bear Crisps before saying fair well at mile 16... saying see you at the finish. 8 miles later running on empty, I was at 1,200 ft running through the top entrance of a slate mine in thick fog, as I approached the final last 2 miles downhill I could hear her voice calling me though the mountain pass and guiding me. The fog cleared and her bobble hat was like a beacon.. we re-joined running the final miles together.

I think it's safe to say we were an emotional blubbing mess at this point, both pushed to the limits. I would not have managed this without a great friend supporting me all the way around, Fluffy managed to clock up 15 miles that day and even got a special recognition from the organizers at the finishing line, she'd helped so many that day. A true runner which I am so thankful for.

My time was 6:58 hrs. a PB on this race for me which I was delighted with. Our accommodation is already booked for 2018... so our journey and story continue.

Thanks to Helen Barker for her Report.

28th Oct - Helloween on the Humber Endurance Race Hull, East Yorkshire and the Humber, Road.

Jayne MacArthur, Sarah Whatton and Shaun Louth travelled up to the Humber Bridge for Helloween On The Humber. This is a 6 hour event where a hundred or so runners and walkers from across the country descend on the world famous Humber Bridge, to test themselves in running, walking, shuffling, and crawling over it. HOTH sees the many competitors taking on the tough and demanding Hell On The Humber route on the World famous Humber Bridge. For this 6 hours they try to complete as many 4 mile laps as possible in that time. All they ask is that participants complete a minimum of one 4 mile lap every 2 hours. How hard could it be??

The run started at 6pm on the Saturday evening and finishes at 12 midnight . Conditions on the bridge were really tough with 70mph winds. You could actually feel the bridge swaying as you ran along which was a strange feeling whilst running. Sarah Completed 6.5 laps which was 26 miles, Jayne 6 laps (24 miles) and Shaun completed 4 laps which was 16 miles. This event is tough but strangely addictive. We will be back next year.

Thanks to Shaun Louth for his Report.

15th Oct - Spires & Steeples Lincolnshire, Multi-Terrain.

A total of 504 people set off on this year's Spires and Steeples Challenge charity walk and run from Lincoln to Sleaford. Celebrating its tenth year, the Spires and Steeples Challenge is a 26 or 13 mile run or walk following the path of the district's Spires and Steeples heritage trail - an off road trail that follows way marked public footpaths and bridleways, open fields and countryside lanes, finishing at the National Centre for Craft and Design.

With no winners, it is described as a test of an individual's fitness and mental grit to cross the finish line. Runners and walkers set off from Lincoln or Metheringham. One of the organisers, Jade Oliver, said this year's event on Sunday saw an increase in entrants from last year, with good weather to boot. She said: "To celebrate our tenth year we encouraged people to make a day of it, providing sports massages, wood-fired pizzas and prosecco. We had a mobile climbing wall and aerial hoop to have a go on and music as we read out people's numbers crossing the line." The challenge is in aid of WheelPower which provides sports wheelchairs, training and support to disabled people. Some also raised funds for their own charities.

26 mile walkers - Helen Barker, Tracey De Feu & Shaun Louth

26 mile Runners - Carl Winwood, Mark Armstrong, Gary Britnell, Michal Nizler, Sarah Whatton & Jayne MacArthur.

13 mile runners - Angie Freemantle, Ingrid Williams, Ana Hendrickson, Nicki Cooper, Mark Ellis & Paul Freemantle.

Thanks to Shaun Louth for his Report.

Well, it was really fantastic conditions for the Spires and steeples Half Marathon. For me, it was something very different! A run full of interesting challenges. Paull Freemantle did a fantastic job at guiding as some of the terrain was a challenge in places. I loved every minute of it I have to say. It was a test of keeping going rather than speed.

We finished in a time of 2 hours 35 and averaging at 11:30 minutes per mile, a great day was had all round!

Thanks to Mark Ellis for his Report.

1st Oct - Lincoln Half Marathon Lincolnshire (Closed Roads)

Organised by OSB Events

Four Sleaford Town Runners completed this years Lincoln Half Marathon. Felt a little disappointed in this years event, it's the 2nd year running and there had been quite a few changes from last year. Damped by a really wet start, all runners had an 800m walk across the mud to new start line and were set out in 'waves'. The course had changed this year and felt a lot harder with the hilly sections though town. There was no music and last year the runners enjoyed bands and street performers at key places on the course - all stripped out this year, very few balloons and I thought really lacked the energy of 2016. Saying that the marshals provided great support and as always Lincoln medals and goodie bag are amazing which made up for the lack lustre of this years Half Marathon.

Mark Armstrong 2.07.14, Nikki Cooper 2.26.21, Emma Winter 2.40.11 & Helen Barker 2.47.38.

Thanks to Helen Barker for her Report. 

30th Sept - Rutland Water Parkrun Leicestershire, Oakham, Tarmac paths.

Well, I rose up early this morning to have another bash at Rutland Parkrun. Paul Davidson was guiding. The conditions were absolutely ideal, there was very little wind, and, I believe there was 199 competitors over all. Well, the start was a pretty good one. However, I had a tangle with a marshaling cone about halfway towards the dam and the turn round point as it was an out and back course. There was a point where it was very narrow, and a bottle kneck of people formed forcing us to take to the grass, as we couldn't find a way through. Then at the turn round point I managed to play a bit of footsy with someone, heal against heal, as we both turned round at the same time, shall we dance? lol! Well, despite all the goings on I still managed an official time of 23:21, not bad all things considered!

Thanks to Mark Ellis for his Report.

24th Sept - Hull Marathon Yorkshire and the Humber, Road.   

This was a really well organised event, couldn't fault it. Loads of support all the way round, drink stations every 3 miles and pace runners for every 15 minutes. The weather was a bit warm and there was a very strong headwind going over the bridge at 18 miles which sapped the energy. Really pleased with the result though of 3:54:53 knocking almost 20 minutes off of my marathon PB. Nice medal, t-shirt and goody bag at the finish with plenty of bananas, cake and fluids post race!!! Nice finish in the KCOM stadium as well. Included in the run was a run on an athletics track at mile 24 which included a 100m sprint where the fastest 100m time in comparison to their marathon pace got a prize as well.

Thanks to Gary Britnell for his Report.

24th Sept - West Pinchbeck 10k West Pinchbeck, Spalding, Lincolnshire, Road.

Host Club - Spalding Triathlon Club.

Clear blue skies, warm breeze then it must be the West Pinchbeck 10k. I hadn't ran a 10k race in years so I'd forgotten how to... well run out of one's comfort zone and so hitting my mile pace from the start was something of a shock to the system! Pinchbeck is as flat as they come with no surprises just a flat fast course, the only downside is the potential for a headwind if like today when there was a breeze blowing on this exposed route around the back roads of Pinchbeck. A decent turnout for this race with it's accustomed friendly atmosphere making for a great race and certainly one to place on your calendar next year if you like 10k's. Andrew Barlex continued his good form setting a new Personal Best time of 44.41, Carl Winwood wasn't far behind in 45.22, I was pleased to dip under 50 minutes in 49.33 with Angie Freemantle also pleased with 51.53. Harriet Atherton started off with Mum Steph but would move clear and finish in 1.10.10, with Steph crossing not far behind n 1.12.59.

Report by Paul Freemantle

23rd Sept - Nine Edges Endurance Event Peak District, Trail/Hills.  

Organised by Edale Mountain Rescue

A self-navigating route taking you over the top of 9 Grit Stone Edges of the Peak District, a challenging event with very mixed terrain. Really enjoyed this event although the planning and route preparation was a bit of a nightmare, along with the very comprehensive mandatory kit list... resulting in a heavy tightly packed back pack.

Fluffy and I walked the route as it was too much to run we were very lucky with the weather and despite going wrong twice in the first 10 minutes we did manage to self-navigate the course and complete the 20 miles (Watches stated 23 miles). I would do it again now I have the requested kit, and know the route.

Very low key, 320 people participated and were either walkers, runners or climbers. Finishing at a local pub with a complimentary drink and bus back to the start line included. This event makes for a lovely day out. Time - was around 9 hours.

Thanks to Helen Barker for her Report.

So myself and Helen Barker along with our Sleaford Striders buddy Kath Cheadle set of for a cheeky night in a fabulous B&B in Sheffield. 3 course meal wine and map reading skills workshop included in the price. (it's my sisters house). It was a really early start 5am wake up call for a 7.30 start.

Start was at Fairholmes at Ladybower reservoir. We rocked up with our Blue Peter cut and pasted 5 sheets of route map ..... lol we hadn't actually realised that most of the route wasn't marked (wooops). So armed with enough essential compulsory kit to last 6 months on Mount Everest base camp we made our way to the start for kit checks but nobody actually checked our massive weight at least 3 tonn rucksacs lol. So off we set really excited we were not going to get lost and need to be rescued by really hunky mountain rescue men. Well after 10 minutes of power walking singing giggling I looked back and saw everyone heading in a completely different direction. (woops) so we back tracked and decided to just for today we would be sheep and follow lol.

The first path up to Derwent Edge was so steep and muddy but we made it to the top. By this time we had lost sight of the person we were following so a group decision was made to consult our epic map!!!!!!!!!!! So off we went again confident we were heading in the right direction ha ha ha ha ......... you can see a common theme here already. We saw a long line of walkers once again heading in the opposite direction. SO we cooly sauntered in the right direction saying we went of piste for a photo opportunity lol lol. Anyway we now had plenty of walkers follow and headed across the first of the 9 nine edges. Foggy and damp and very boggy (which is another word which gets a fair amount of airplay).

So singing chatting about random rubbish laughs giggles and falling in boggy puddles we made it past 2 checkpoints. The route was much easier to plot now just literally walk along the edges. Derwent Edge through to Stanage Edge . Here the runners started to make their way past us like skinny mountain goats. We on the other hand more like the old nanny goats picking our way through boulders and bog steep terrain. Then Burbage edge (lovely downhill smooth path. Half way point. Made it through more checkpoints yeahhhhhhhh. We encountered horses (one who took a particular liking to my Shaun's day glow rucksack) who followed me was a little scary. Cows fields oh and more bogs actually even boggier bogs. Still singing and giggling occasional little snack breaks. My sister and brother in law turned up to greet us ¾ of the way round which was great as at this point it was highly likely we would end up in the wrong direction again lol . But Patrick the most amazing personal (brother in law) sat nav made sure we were heading in the right direction.

The second half was much flatter again and drier till the last 4 miles which we were up on curber edge again bog and boulders. I hit a wall? 19 miles wet feet my blister burst I really wanted to quit never ever see the Peak District ever again. But determined not to cry (I almost did) I put my big girl pants on and with masses of group awesome buddie encouragement we made it to the finish to the Robin Hood Pub at Baslow. A beer token was quickly exchanged at the bar for the best tasting pint of larger and blackcurrant. It was the toughest event I have ever done but the best. Also the best 2 ladies ever who have buckets full of determination. Thankyou Helen and Kath, I would highly recommend this event (but it's a good idea to be good with a map and a compass.

Thanks to Fluffy Bergner for her Report. 

3rd Sept - ABP Coastal Half Marathon Cleethorpes, Lincolnshire, Multi-Terrain.

Organised by 'Tape2Tape'  **New Race**

Really enjoyed this event - very easy to find, beautiful course following the shore of the Humber Estuary, followed by trail footpaths through woods and Holiday Park. Really well organised, tones of support with race marshals and holiday makers to cheer you on. Lovely goody bag, medal, t-shirt and ice cream to all finishers. Lots of photos up on the website within a day and chip times texted to you shortly after finishing.

Times were irrelevant on this race - it was lovely to be out there with Jo Calver and Clare Bergner all finishing around 3 hrs.

Thanks to Helen Barker for her Report.

Myself and Helen Barker travelled together to Cleethorpes to take part in the first ABP Humber Coastal Marathon. As we were unsure of parking etc we set off from Sleaford early to bag a prime parking spot for a quick get away after the run. as Fluffy was working a night shift after race. Our journey was good very little traffic at 7.00am from Sleaford to Cleethorpes via Horncastle easy route. We were expecting lots of car parks however we arrived to a very quite Cleethorpes and bagged a free on street parking slot opposite the race start. High 5 Fluffy and Helen. As we now had 2 hours before our race started we began to explore and sunny Cleethorpes. We soon met our Sleaford Striders race buddies Kath and Helen and found a fab little Café to have a coffee and a spot of breakfast. On our way to the start we also met Jo Calver who was running too. A nice surprise so now 3 STR were taking part.

The start was well marked on the sea front promenade. It was very beautiful warm breezy sunny Sunday morning. Well organised start and prompt at 10am off we went. Lots of towns folk cheering as we set off along the seafront promenade Lots of very encouraging Marshalls. After 1.5 miles we turned into the caravan park and out onto good paths and closed roads towards Tetney Lock. Helen and myself were soon joined by the race Sweep runners 4/5 in total running with us back markers. I can honestly say (and ive met a few sweep runners cars bikes etc in my long experience of back marker running lol lol) These were a fab groups of ladies offering gentle words of advice and encouragement to get us all round. Offering us the occasional jelly baby too. Well organised water stations offered cups or bottles of cold water. All the way round every marshall offered words of encouragement and were fantastic. There were a couple of gravel paths which were a bit of a challenge to tired legs as quite large stone were around for a cheeky twisted ankle if you were unlucky but this was the only negative thing I could say about the race. We past majestic wind turbines in a field of beautiful sunflowers. We then turned back in to the caravan park and headed back along the seafront which was beautiful despite the sea being a long way out. Again lots of locals turned out to cheer us back in with our very tired legs (especially the machine Helen Barker who only 7 days before had completed a really tough 100km race) We made it across the finish line hand in hand.

Once again a very well organised finish line. great T shirt a token for the best ice cream it was delicious and as we were nearly last (at least 6 behind us) no que at the ice cream parlour for our freebie which was delicious. Great Bling and even a stick of seaside rock in our goody bag. This was an excellent race very well organised and beautiful and flat route. Would be good for a PB if you were looking for one (ha ah we were only interested in getting round). Would I do it again yes 100% yes.

Thanks to Clare Bergner aka 'Fluffy' for her Report.

3rd Sept - Lincs County 10,000 Metre Championships Boston Lincolnshire, Track.  

Well, the morning of the 10 Thousand Metres Championships had arived. Myself, Paul Davidson (who was guiding) and his Wife Janice all trogged off to the Princess Royal arena. One thing that struck me, when we arived was that there was hardly anyone about, unlike previous races that I've entered where there's lots of people milling about and general hubbub. So, we sat down and had a coffee and waited to go upstairs to register, oh, and a little warm up was had on the track, about 4 laps so, a mile. Then we registered, and it was still very quiet. We made our way down to the start and finish straight with about 10 minutes to go. At this point no one else seemed to be on the track, it was very odd and almost surreal! The conditions were perfect apart from a slight breeze. With about 5 minutes to go, 2 others had rocked up, a chap that Paul happened to know and someone that was slightly older than myself, probably a Vet 55. Then, we were told to be on our marks, set and bang! we were off! There was someone counting the laps as we finished one, and they were shouting out the times for each lap. The chap that Paul knew was well in the lead the vet 50 was also in front of me. He dropped out a few times but was allowed to continue, I was then in second place. We finished in a time of 49:34 minutes and the silver medal! A totally unexpected result I have to say!

Thanks to Mark Ellis for his Report.

2nd Sept - Bassingham Bash 5 Mile road race Bassingham, Lincolnshire, Road.  

Hosted by Witham Runners

Carl and I stood out amongst the masses of orange and yellow club vests as the only people wearing red! Lining up a suitable distance behind the fast runners at the start (Lindsey sensibly moved further back!) I was able to stay with Carl for the first 500m when he steadily pulled away from me. A small loop around the village took us past the start line again before heading out into the surrounding roads. With hardly a breath of wind (makes a change for me!) and the sun beating down the going soon became pretty tough, but the course was flat and the large loop course allowed me occasional glimpses of a red vest up ahead! As we came back to Bassingham for a final pass of the start I was able to slowly reel Carl in managing to pass him in the final stretch. I crossed the line in 35:52 with Carl close on my heels in 36:25. This was Lindsey's first ever race and she managed the tough conditions well to finish in 1:02:34.

No medal or T-shirt here, instead you get a mug and a flapjack - unless you point out that the flyer mentioned cake not just flapjack, and then you get a piece of chocolate cake - well done Lindsey! A small field of 203 people, but well organised by Witham Runners and an interesting distance to try, I will probably be back next year!

Thanks to Andy Barlex for his Report.

26th Aug - The South Coast Challenge Eastbourne to Arundel, (70% Trail & 30% Road)  

Ultra Challenge Series by Action UK, 25km, 50km or 100km over 1 or 2 days.

Starting at Eastbourne this ultra takes you long the south coast path all the way around to Brighton (50km) and then in land on to Arundel (100km) 1600 participant's took part with the choice of 25km, 50km or 100km. I opted for 100km, which I did find hard. My body was let down by my feet which started causing me issues from 23km. My friend collapsed at 69km and at that point I really didn't think we'd continue, however we somehow did and managed to cross the 100km finish line at Arundel at lunch time the next day. Pleased I did it a massive achievement, could not have done it without the amazing support from the club getting me through some really tough/horrid times.

Very true when they people say first half is your body working and the second half is with your mind - I didn't think we'd finish this one. Time: 29 hours 48 minutes.

Thanks to Helen Barker for her Report.

19th Aug - Hell On The Humber Endurance Race Hull, East Yorkshire & the Humber, Road.  

Jayne MacArthur and Shaun Louth travelled up to the Humber Bridge for Hell On The Humber. This is an endurance event series like no other, and each year on the third weekend in August, otherwise known as HOTH weekend (to the initiated), hundreds of runners and walkers from across the country descend on the world famous Humber Bridge, to test themselves in running, walking, shuffling, and crawling over it. HOTH sees the many competitors taking on the tough and demanding Hell On The Humber route, on the World famous Humber Bridge, for 6, 12, or 24 hours, as they try to complete as many 4 mile laps as possible in that time. All they ask is that participants complete a minimum of one 4 mile lap every 3 hours. How hard could it be??? Both runners Entered the 12 hour event which starts at 7pm on the Saturday evening and finishes at 7am on the Sunday morning. After battling the strong winds on the bridge through the night both runners completed the full 12 hours. Jayne completed 11 laps which was 44 miles and Shaun 7 laps which was 28 miles.

Thanks to Shaun Louth for his Report.

13th August - Newark Half Marathon Nottinghamshire, Road. 

Organised by Newark Striders, Notfast Running Club, Newark Athletic Club & Fernwood Running Club.

The Eden Hall Spa Newark Half Marathon is a flat, fast and scenic summer race. It is limited to 1,500 entrants with a fun run and entertainment for all the family in support of our charity partner Beaumond House. The setting is historic Newark with its castle and civil war museum. The race starts in the Sconce Park, site of civil war battles, passes the Ice Age Journey dig, where our ancestors settled over 13,000 years ago, skirts East Stoke, site of the bloodiest civil battle through Elston, birth place of the Darwin family and where our main sponsor Eden Hall is situated then back to the Sconce Park. The route is flat and fast and mainly on closed roads.

Myself, Stan and Tracy represented Sleaford Town Runners this year, it was very hot. Not a day to go out and smash any PB's. Extra water stations and a sponge station were out this year which helped. Well organised, although parking can be an issue on the day with no central car park near the start line, Newark Half is a pretty average half with some long stretches of open (but closed off) roads and a horrid loop of the playing fields at the end . An average tech T-Shirt and average medal for all those finishing. Not my favourite route, but a good event because there isn't many half marathons in August. Tracy Parr 2.09.37, Stan Thornton 2.45.23 & Helen Barker 2.54.26.

Thanks to Helen Barker for her Report. 

11th Aug - Sleaford 10k Scredington, Lincolnshire, Road. 

Host Club - Sleaford Striders AC

Love Sleaford 10K, it's such a great local run and organised really it well. I also love the fact it's always on a Friday night, and you can be back home by 9pm. Small numbers, always friendly unfortunately this year the weather was against us and it poured with rain.

Sleaford Town Runners all ran really well with Andy Barlex pulling in first place for best in age!!!! Andrew Barlex 1st MV50 45:29, Simon Lunn 46:40, Helen Barker 1:11:27 & Clare Bergner 1:19:53.

Thanks to Helen Barker for her Report.

Yet another breezy day - I only seem to run on windy days! The race conditions were good for the start but after 15 minutes it started to rain and continued until just about everyone had finished. Having been subjected to a moist speed session earlier in the week, the race conditions were almost dry by comparison and did not affect my performance. I managed to finish in 45:29 a new PB, and Simon was not far behind in 46:40. Helen crossed the line in 71:27 and Clare followed in 79:53. During the much anticipated tea and cake session after the race I was surprised to be called forward to accept the 1st in Age category, an unexpected turn of events!

Thanks to Andy Barlex for his Report.  

8th August - Belton House Parkrun Belton, Grantham, Lincolnshire, Multi-Terrain.  

The expected turn out of Town Runners was lower than anticipated and as I unable to go for breakfast afterwards as I had taxi duties to perform! However, it was a cool morning with a brisk breeze. I was able to complete the course in 22:33, knocking almost 30secs off my previous best at Belton. Rachel finished in 44:02 for a seasons best performance.

Thanks to Andy Barlex for his Report. 

29th July - Heckington 10 Heckington, Lincolnshire, Road. 

Hosted by Sleaford Striders AC

A windy day for this two lap race, but dry after an extended period of rain (apart from the start/finish in the arena which was quite muddy underfoot!). John Lawlor was first home for STR in 69:32, who also came first in his age group. I managed to gain a new PB in 77:38 despite the wind, and Stan finished in 1:55:27. Although it is pretty flat the route is very uninspiring and going almost all the way back to the start to begin the second lap is pretty daunting, especially as all of the faster runners zoom past!

Thanks to Andy Barlex for his Report.

28th July - The Grim Reaper Ultra Marathon Grimsthorpe Castle, Bourne, Lincolnshire, Multi-Terrain.

Hosted by Fat Feet Events

Helen Barker and Shaun Louth took the short trip to Grimsthorpe Castle to run the Grim Reaper Ultra Marathon. The Grim Reaper is 40,70 or 100 mile Ultra Marathon which takes place around a 10 mile loop through the grounds of Grimsthorpe Castle. Regardless of your chosen distance you 26 hours to complete the event. Helen and Shaun were running the 40 miles event. The challenging route is 50% tarmac, 35% limestone and bridal way and 15% field. Shaun and Helen stayed together for the first 3 laps but then adopted different strategies for the last 10 miles. Shaun decided to carry on straight back out in the dark and the rain whilst Helen decided she would like to see the sunrise whilst on her last lap so Helen grabbed some rest and a little sleep after lap 3. Both runners safely finished the event, Shaun in 15 hours and Helen in 23 hours including her rest.

This is a great event but don't turn expecting all the trimmings of a Rat Race event or Equinox. You need to be self-sufficient in between and while on each 10 mile loop.

Thanks to Shaun Louth for his Report.   

22nd July - Music Legends Challenge... Prince Brackmills Reservoir, Northampton, Multi-Terrain.

Hosted by Saxons, Normans and Vikings Running

The event is a six hour timed challenge event. Complete as many loops as you wish within the time limit. Run one lap, a half marathon, a marathon, an ultra! Following the huge success of our runs in Kent SVN are now having to expand to cope with the demand and the number one request was can there be more outside of Kent, so here it is. Middle of England, Northampton! SVN were very kindly offered to take over the route from the excellent Madeyarun folk and jumped at the opportunity to add an SVN twist to this excellent route and venue! The course is a mix of very high quality bike paths and grassy trails along the River Nene and around several flood reservoirs, so plenty of wildlife and views to be seen. It's pretty flat, only about 50' of climb per lap. As usual there was a well stocked aid station which you pass every 3.3 miles, a unique custom made medal and a goody bag that actually contains goodies which will make the undulations and any mud more than worth it.

Shaun Louth completed 4 laps which is just over a Half Marathon Distance. Louise McCauley and Jayne MacArthur both completed 8 laps and slightly over Marathon distance.

Thanks to Shaun Louth for his Report.  

15th July - The Samphire 100/24 Hour Samphire Challenge Dover, Kent, Multi-Terrain. 

Hosted by Saxons, Normans and Vikings Running

I yet again hit the road and travelled south all the way down to Dover for my latest challenge. Race organisers were very fortunate to have been granted permission to hold a 100 mile ultra event at Samphire Hoe. A nature reserve created from 4.9 million cubic metres of chalk marl from the Channel Tunnel excavations on the coast of Kent near Dover. The main event was a 100 mile endurance run of 27 times 3.71 mile loops. In addition there was a 24 hour timed challenge to complete as many 3.71 mile loops as possible in the 24 hour time limit. The course is a mix of very high quality gently rolling trail, bike paths and a nice dead flat sea wall, quite literally all within the shadow of the famous White Cliffs of Dover, there was plenty of wild life to keep an eye out for, you can also see what's going on at both Dover and Folkestone Harbours, there was plenty of ships to see and some trains to spot too for good measure! Allegedly if it's clear you can even see France! My goal was to complete 7 laps plus one mini loop which would be 26.5 miles and be another tick in the box towards the 100 marathon club. Time was never going to be an issue as I was entered in the 24 hour challenge, I just had to cover the distance. A sunny start soon turned to rain and an awful headwind on the sea wall but after 8 hours 40 mins my mission and marathon No.47 was complete. 

Thanks to Shaun Louth for his Report. 

9th July - New Forest 10 Mile Brockenhurst, Hampshire, Multi-Terrain.

Hosted by, New Forest Runners

The main event was the 10M but there were 3 fun runs (1/2M, 1M and 3M) to cater for all abilities and encourage other people to start running. It was a lovely sunny day so of course everyone decided to visit the New Forest and the roads were very busy. The race instructions mentioned that it gets very busy and you should allow plenty of time to get there. Unfortunately I did not receive this information as it arrived at home after I had left for our holidays! Arriving with 15 mins to spare allowed me to collect a number (my allocated one sitting at home in an envelope!) pin it on and join a very large queue for the numerous portaloos! A quick drink and warm up jog on the way to the start and I was ready for the off at 11:15 with the family thinking I would be easy to spot in my STR vest.

As we set off I did my best to go at my pace and not be dragged along by the faster runners and then I saw another STR vest and though great someone to run with! However is soon became apparent that some other club had copied our design (Lychett Manor Striders) and my family would have to pay attention to see me cross the line. The course was mainly through trails with a bit of road work and undulated throughout. Some areas were under cover which bought welcome relief from the beating sunshine. Pockets of supporters and holidaymakers gave plenty of encouragement along the whole route. The marshals were numerous and very supportive, there were several well-spaced water stops and the organisation overall was very good. Once over the line I was presented with a Horse Brass as a memento and directed to people handing out water.

For those not running there was food and drink available and the site is suitable for families to picnic and enjoy the day rather than just rush off which happens at many races. I am already planning to take my holiday to coincide with this event again, but I will allow more time to get there! The first male crossed the line in 54:57 with the first female in 1:03:37. I managed to finish in 1:18:20, 128th overall out of a total field of 665.

Thanks to Andy Barlex for his Report.

9th July - Notfast 10k Newark, Nottinghamshire, Road.  

Host Club - Notfast Running Club

Notfast 10k was yet again a good course although really hot with a little breeze. It was won by ex Sleaford Town Runner Greg Southern in 35:47, the first STR member was John Lawlor in a great time of 42:40, second was Gary Britnell in 47:41 and third STR in was Stan Thornton in 1:12:29. A good long sleeve tech t-shirt as well.

Thanks to Gary Britnell for his Report.

8th July - Belton House Parkrun Belton, Grantham, Lincolnshire, Multi-Terrain. 

A few of the Club decided to go and run Belton Parkrun followed by breakfast at Belton Garden Centre. The times were as follows Louise McCauley 29:52 , Jayne MacArthur, 29:53, Joanne Calver 34:09 and Shaun Louth 42:41.  

Thanks to Shaun Louth for his Report.

2nd July - Chesterfield Spire 10 Chesterfield, Derbyshire, Road.

Host Club - North Derbyshire Running Club

Conditions for the race were great with a bit of sun shine and a cool breeze and a good field of 240 club runners, all 3 of us were looking at about 1hr 30 to get round and be happy. The route was unchanged from previous years with 4 miles of uphill from the start, then 4.5 miles undulating before the last 1.5 miles uphill to the finish, a hard race for us flatlanders. I was the first from STR back in 89th place, 37th in age group in a time of 1:21:43, knocking over 7 minutes off my best for my past Spires races. Next in was Paul Freemantle in 100th place, 14th in age group in a time of 1:23:50, looking almost like he had enjoyed it, then Angie Freemantle came in in 127th place, 1st in age group, in a time of 1:27:25. Good bottle of beer at the finish and a good quality cotton T-Shirt.

A great day out, hard race and unusual distance. Definitely one for next year.

Thanks to Gary Britnell for his Report.

23rd June - Summer Solstice Long Bennington, Lincolnshire, Road. 

Host Club - Grantham Running Club 

Well, conditions were almost perfect for the Summer Solstice of 2017, apart from a slight breeze. It was a fantastic race Paul Davidson was guiding, and he did an outstanding job. The course was almost flat, aside from a few little hills, one I distinctly remember at mile 4, where there was a pub nearby, and Paul asking me did I want to stop for a beer? Did I lose focus then slightly? Course not! ha ha. I finished in a time of 49 Minutes and 2 seconds. A very good evening all round! 

Thanks to Mark Ellis for his Report.

18th June - Three Lakes Classic 16 Rother Valley Country Park, Killamarsh, Sheffield, Multi-Terrain.

Host Club - Killamarsh Kestrels Running Club  

Always a good club athletes race, this race has had a few little changes each year with this year being no exception taking the distance out to 16 miles. It was a red hot day so it was going to be a good effort to just get round. The marshals were great and plenty of water stops. First back was Gary Britnell in 2:26:31 and close on his heels was Angie Freemantle in a time of 2:34:46. Then came Paul Freemantle in 2:43:51, who we nearly missed coming in as he forgot his club vest (club fine) even though Angie said he could wear her spare one. Then there were two other STR runners who seemed to have sweet talked some marshals and cut a corner with their Garmins saying they did 10 miles were Helen Barker in 2:23:54 and Clare Bergner in 2:40:53.

Thanks to Gary Britnell for his Report.

17th June - Dambusters Triathlon Rutland Water, Leicestershire.  

Well, the weather couldn't have been better for the start of the Dambusters 2017 triathlon! I hauled myself into my wet suit to begin the 1500 meter swim. The excitement was mounting as everyone was chattering and wishing each other good luck. Myself and my swim guide "Mary Hardwic" were off! We finished the swim in just over 51 minutes. Then, it was a quick 4 minute scramble in the transition area as I yanked off the wetsuits, pulled on my trainers and socks, to begin the 26 mile bike ride.

There were 4 massive hills to climb but myself and Stuart Hill chugged on up them! As the ride progressed, it was getting gradually warmer. Still we made it! We finished in a time of 1 hour 46 minutes. Then, last, but not least, the 10k run. This was a very steady plod. We were both feeling like our legs didn't belong to us anymore, still again we completed it, and just kept ticking along. We finished the run in about 1 hour 20 minutes. So, altogether we completed the whole event in 3 hours 46 minutes. Our target was at least 4 hours so we did better than we thought we would. A fantastic day all round, and really it was great team effort!

Thanks to Mark Ellis for his Report.

11th June - Bah'tat Trial Half Marathon Ilkley Moor, West Yorkshire, Multi-Terrain. 

A new event close to where my parents live so knew some of the terrain and how tough it was going to be. A very small field of just over 50 started the marathon (2 laps), with 77 doing the half marathon starting 30 minutes later. All runners were given wrist bands and there were machines at 4, 9 and finish and needed to make sure the machine went 'Whoosh'

It started at Keighley Leisure centre, so plenty of parking and facilities. The first 4 miles were on road, but mainly climbing to the entrance of Ilkley Moor (Bah'tat), where there was the first checkpoint (Whoosh!), 48 mins for the first 4 miles. Next couple of miles were gravel, a bit more climbing before a steep descent into Ilkley. A small section on road, before marshal pointed right and back over the moor, but this time the "rough way", very steep with a lot of rocks made the going tough until hit the top of the moor and onto a paved path back to the entrance of the Moor. Whoosh! 9 miles in 1:59 now a long downhill to the finish, my legs felt fine until hit the more level terrain when my legs just gave up, so was pleased to see the finish line. Whoosh 2 hours 40 minutes.

A lovely medal, water, chocolate bar, sweets and a bottle of Timothy Taylor Landlord. Garmin told me 562 metres of ascending and my legs confirmed, just felt sorry for the marathon runners!

Thanks to Alistair Whitaker for his Report. 

10th June - The Monster Ambit Suffolk, Multi-Terrain.  

The Monster Ambit is a 24 hour endurance running/walking event which takes place in Thetford Forest. It is held on an 11km Loop through the forest. I saw this as an opportunity to go and have a relaxed pressure event to cover marathon distance. I completed 4 laps 44km which is 27.5 miles and so finished on Ultra distance. This is a very well organised event with a very friendly and supportive field of participants. I will definitely go and take part at this event again. At the finish you get a really great Tech T Shirt and Medal.

Thanks to Shaun Louth for his Report.

4th June Derby Half Marathon (Road Race) Ramathon Derby, Road. 

The Ramathon is a flat and fast half marathon starting and finishing at Derby County's Pride Park Stadium. It attracts around 5000 runners which creates a great atmosphere to run in. This is my third year running and I still really enjoy this event and route. Due to the really hot weather and relentless sun Fluffy and I took the wise decision to run/walk from the onset and just focus on the distance and time on our feet rather than achieving a set time.

I'd really recommend this half it only took 1.20 hrs to get there, really well organised and provides everything you would expect from a larger Half Marathon. Always, hot plenty of water and sun cream required !

Time over 3 hours, Helen & Fluffy.

Thanks to Helen Barker for her Report. 

29th May - The Cakeathon Jeskyns Community Woodland, Gravesend, Kent, Multi-Terrain. 

Hosted by Normans, Saxons and Vikings

This event is a six hour endurance run on 3.28 mile loops. Complete as many 3.28 mile loops as you wish in the time limit, four laps will be a Half marathon, eight a marathon and 9+ an ultra. The course is a mix good quality cycle tracks and decent trail. Although these events are a good drive away they are so friendly, low key and pressure free. Also there isn't a better goody bag or medal anywhere in the UK for your money.

Shaun Louth Completed 4 laps which is Half marathon distance.

Thanks to Shaun Louth for his Report.

13th May - The Dukeries 30 Mile Ultra Newark, Nottinghamshire, Multi-Terrain. 

Hosted by Hobo Pace running

The Dukeries series are beginner friendly trail runs of varying distances all located around the Sherwood Forest and Clumber Park area. This was the 30 mile run that Hobo Pace host. Jayne MacArthur, Mark Ellis and Shaun Louth travelled to the village of Walesby which is where the Start/Finish was. The 30.8 mile route is very scenic and passes through Sherwood Forest, Cresswell Craggs and Clumber Park before heading back towards Walesby to the finish. The finishing times were Jayne MacArthur 7:03, Mark Ellis 7:03 and Shaun Louth 9:13.

The Hobo events are really popular and the 250 limit for this event was reached long before race day.

Thanks to Shaun Louth for his Report.   

13th May - The Dukeries 30 Mile Ultra Newark, Nottinghamshire, Multi-Terrain. 

Well, managed to finish the Dukeries 30 in 7 hours 2 minutes and 39 seconds. It was very technical in parts. There were a good number of narrow pathways to negotiate, plus, climbing over a wall at Cresswell Crags which was at mile 13. Both Adrian and Stuart shared the guiding roles, and both did absolutely fantastically! We were taking advantage of the food stations which seemed to have endless supplies of what ever you wanted. It was a fantastic day all round!

Thanks to Mark Ellis for his Report.

7th May - Shakespeare Marathon & Half Marathon Stratford-upon-Avon, Warwickshire, Road. 

It was a beautiful sunny day that met runners for the Shakespeare Half and Marathon. It was an early start at 9.00am it was already warming up. Two members of Sleaford Town Runners, Lou McCauley and Angie Freemantle and their support crews had travelled to the event and weren't disappointed. It is a two lap course with a slight difference for the marathon runners on the second lap. Scenic, hilly and varied terrain, lots of water stations and brilliant marshalls throughout the course made this race a fantastic event.

Half Marathon - Lou McCauley 2:10:42, Marathon - Angie Freemantle 4:09:48

Thanks to Angie Freemantle for her Report.

7th May - Sleaford Half Marathon Lincolnshire, Road.

Host Club - Sleaford Striders AC

New date, new course as the Sleaford Half Marathon returned to Sleaford. Starting from the football club, a quick lap around St Giles before heading out to the countryside around Kirby La Thorpe, Evedon, Ewerby, Howell, Ewerby Thorpe. Not closed roads around the villages so had to watch out for cars. Great support from the marshalls. Medal, T-shirt and water at the finish. Nice to have a local race, thank you Striders. Simon Lunn 1:53:09, Mark Ellis 1:59:02, Tracy Parr 2:00:00, Alistair Whitaker 2:04:23 & Stan Thornton 2:33:39.

Thanks to Alistair Whitaker for his Report.

7th May - Sleaford Half Marathon Lincolnshire, Road.

Host Club - Sleaford Striders AC

Well it was a cool and slightly windy start, and very chogged and crowded but, about 6 miles in it did start to thin out which was nice. There wasn't the muddy slippy section that there was last year which was a bonus overall I'd say the new route is a big improvement that's for sure. Finished with a time of 1 hour 59 minutes and 6 seconds. Adrian was guiding and, he did a fantastic job! Its certainly a nice race to do now that the route has been changed, very pleased overall!

Thanks to Mark Ellis for his Report.  

6th May - Belton House Parkrun Belton, Grantham, Lincolnshire, Multi-Terrain.

Gary Britnell finished 19th overall and reduced his Belton personal best further in a time of 22.03, Paul Freemantle followed in 25.24.

6th May - The 'Dirty Weekend' at Burghley House, Stamford, Lincolnshire, Multi-Terrain.

Organised by 'Rat Race'

Dirty Weekend is the biggest and best obstacle racing weekend in world. They bring together monster obstacles, a phenomenal after party, huge event village and awesome campsite. You can take on 20 or 13 miles. I went for the 20 mile route with 200+ obstacles!

This race packs a big punch, however don't let that put you off as there are plenty opportunities to take your time and walk around those obstacles that just look a bit too scary! Everyone takes care of each other and there are plenty of supporters and fellow runners to drag you over, under or around if you can't manage it. I had a brilliant day with friends. I would recommend this to anyone wishing for a real adrenalin rush! it does not disappoint. Due to its nature you can't really control the time, it's a full day out though taking me 7.49 minutes to do the 20 miles.

Thanks to Helen Barker for her Report.

6th May - The Viking Challenge Challenge Reculver, Kent, Multi-Terrain. 

Hosted by Normans, Saxons and Vikings

This event is a six or 24 hours endurance run on 6.67 mile loops. Complete as many 6.67 mile loops as you wish in the time limit, four laps will be a marathon, five an ultra, or two perhaps for a half marathon. The course is a mix of tarmac roads (about 2%), decent trail (about 10%), not quite so decent trail (about 5%), and the rest is high quality concrete and tarmac farm roads and bike paths, so an awful lot of it is on good runnable surfaces and its pretty flat, about 250' a lap with some lovely views across the Kent Countryside towards Reculver, Thanet, a railway line and the A299. OK, confession, the A299 not quite so lovely, but its something to look at and does make access to the location really simple as only half a mile from a major road.

Shaun Louth and Sarah Whatton took the 3 hour drive to Kent to take part in this event. Although these events are a good drive away they are so friendly, low key and pressure free. Also there isn't a better goody bag or medal anywhere in the UK for your money.

Shaun completed 4 laps which is marathon distance and Sarah completed 5 laps to notch up yet another Ultra.

Thanks to Shaun Louth for his Report.  

23rd Apr - The Longhorn Thoresby Hall, Nottinghamshire, Multi-Terrain. 

8 members of the Club travelled To Thoresby Hall near Ollerton for the Longhorn running event. Six of the Club members took part in the Half Marathon event, Gary Britnell 1:44:41, Angie Freemantle 2:00:44, Paul Freemantle 2:07:00, Jo Calver 2:49:17, Mark Ellis 2:49:17 & Tracey Dufeu 2:49:17.

Helen Barker ran in the marathon event and finished smiling as always in 6:21:39. Jayne MacArthur had an earlier start than all the others taking part in the 60km Ultra Marathon event finishing in 7:57:25 and coming first in her category.

Thanks to Shaun Louth for his Report. 

23rd Apr - Virgin London Marathon London, Road.  

This year the Club had 4 representatives in the London marathon. The runners and their finishing times are Michael Baxter 3:37:11, Chris Balfe 3:39:43, Sarah Whatton 5:21:44 and Mike Folland 5:44:23.

17th Apr - Boston Half & Full Marathon Lincolnshire, Road.

A group of Club members took part in the Boston Full and Half Marathon on Bank Holiday Monday. The conditions were absolutely perfect on the day. This is a great local event that is only going to grow in popularity.

Sarah Whatton was the only one from the club to take on the marathon distance and completed it in a time of 5 hours 33 minutes. The rest of the runners completed the half marathon and the times were Carl Winwood 01:35:09, Ana Hendrickson 01:48:23, Gary Hendrickson 01:48:23, Tracy Parr 02:00:13, Alistair Whitaker 02:00:45 and Shaun Louth walked the whole 13.1 miles in 03:27:17.

Thanks to Shaun Louth for his Reports. 

9th Apr - Belvoir Half Marathon Hose, Leicestershire, Road.

Organised by Hose Village Hall Committee.

2nd Year of attending this local run, 484 Runners ran the Half Marathon. Pretty local route around the 'Vale of Belvoir' and surrounding villages and farms. Couple of very small hills, pretty flat with some long stretches of open road, broken up with farm tracks. This year was unseasonably very hot which caught out a few runners.

Well organised, very easy to find and get parked up, chip timing and medal/banana to everyone that finished. Finished 2.54 hrs.

Thanks to Helen Barker for her Report.

2nd April - Grantham Cup 10k at Belton Horse Trials, Lincolnshire, Multi-Terrain. 

Great weather and yet again a lovely route, although 2 mega hills that as everyone else was walking up thought I would too. Over 50 Canicross runners with their dogs took part as well, from separate start. Completed it in a best ever for Belton of 52:33. Got a bottle of water, banana, crisps, chocolate bar and a bottle of bespoke beer!!!!

Entry to the race gives you free entry to Belton horse trials and reduced entry for the family!! Great day out and gets bigger every year.

Thanks to Gary Britnell for his Report. 

2nd Apr - Obstacle Run Ancaster, Lincolnshire, Multi-Terrain. 

Organised by 'Rough Events' (Mud/Water/Woods)

Saw this advertised locally and thought it would be a good taster for those a little unsure of the world of 'OCR Events' (Obstacle Course Running). There were 6 races over 2 days, both offering 5km, 6 miles and a 10 miler. I nervously entered the 5km with the pretence my 11 year old son would be on hand to drag his mum out of any oversized muddy puddles full of tyres. The obstacles are just as scary as advertised and worse when you are standing in front of them but I was amazed that everyone no matter of age or size gave them a go. The marshals helped you over, under and through the most extreme obstacles and nobody judged you if you couldn't manage as there were plenty of alternative options.

I was slightly off put by the price of £25.00 at first however we had plenty of time out on the course and didn't feel rushed to complete in any set time. When you see the course you can see why they have to charge a little extra for the experience, it was very well built and very imaginative. I felt part of the team with my 'Rough Events' T shirt given to me to at the start line and I was delighted to receive a medal, drink and chocolate bar at the end.

A great local event for those wishing to have a bit of local fun and try out something new.

Hannah Voss (Saturday 6 miles) & Helen Barker (Sunday 5k)

Thanks to Helen Barker for her Report.

25th Mar - 5:30pm Start 'Dark Skies Run' Kielder Water and Forest National Park, Northumberland - Trail Outlaws (Woodland Trail Footpaths) 26.5 Miles. 

I was lucky enough to be given an out of this world opportunity and race under the darkest night skies in England, an amazing unforgettable experience. Kielder is awarded gold tier Dark Sky Park status by the International Dark Skies association making it the perfect venue for the ultimate starlit running challenge.

Starting and finishing on the banks of this epic lake the 26.5 mile course took you the whole way round following the shoreline path. Quite a small group of no more than 165 people ran, finishers received a lovely medal and T Shirt. The night soon becomes very dark, cold and frosty, mandatory kit is required and there are very limited stations/check points on route. By the time I got to the stations water cups had gone and the Jaffa Cakes and Haribo Sweets were frozen rock solid.

Generous 7 hour cut off for those wishing to run/walk (as many do) I was nearly pulled though as I took 7 hours 29 mins lucky though I did get to finish.... too much star gazing for me!!

Thanks to Helen Barker for her Report.

25th Mar - Belton House Parkrun Belton, Grantham, Lincolnshire, Multi-Terrain. 

Arrived at Belton House with a freezing mist covering the course. An alternative route for this week with an out and back 2 lap run. Then all over to Belton Garden Centre for a lovely post run breakfast.

Alistair Whitaker 27:21, Lou McCauley 31:54, Mike Folland 32:10, Jo Calver 32:58, Jayne MacArthur 35:28 & Shaun Louth 42:59.

Thanks to Alistair Whitaker for his Report.

19th Mar - Ashby 20 Ashby-de-la-Zouch, Leicestershire, 20 miles Road.

Organised by Ivanhoe Runners

Arrived in Ashby-de-la-Zouch to almost perfect temperature, but quite windy which got stronger as the race progressed. A short walk from the car park to the start. The course was a 1.5 mile run away from Ashby then 2 laps around the surrounding villages before running back to Ashby. The course was undulating, which seemed steeper on the second lap than the first. The route is closed to the traffic on the left hand side of the road.

Finish times: Jayne MacArthur 3:50:49 & Alistair Whitaker 4:08:47.

Great support from the Marshalls. No medal but a lovely red hoodie for each finisher and a cheese cob.

Thanks to Alistair Whitaker for his Report.

12th Mar - Retford Half Marathon Retford, Nottinghamshire, Road.

Host Club - Retford Athletic Club

This is a well organised race with about 85% of the roads closed for the race. It is a undulating course with some long stretches of gradual uphill. There is also an out and back loop at about 7 miles so that you can look at all those people chasing you down. It was a great day for running, overcast and a little breeze. Stood at the start we were all a bit chilly but once underway we soon warmed up. A pretty good race was had by all 4 Sleaford Town Runners with a great technical t-shirt. The results from the chip timing were: Gary Britnell 1:41:29 (PB), Angie Freemantle 1:49:57 (3rd in age group), Paul Freemantle 2:01:22 (with no training for months) & Helen Barker 2:50:40.m

Thanks to Gary Britnell for his Report.

11th Mar - The Moonlight Challenge Reculver, Kent, Multi-Terrain.

Hosted by Normans, Saxons and Vikings

This event is the successor to the Challenge Hub's Moonlight Challenge event run for many years by the ultra running legend that is Mike Inkster and to keep the spirit of that event alive we'll also be holding several other Challenge events very much keeping with the ethos that Mike created about being inclusive, runner friendly and making events achievable for as many people as possible. This event is an eight hour endurance run on 6.67 mile loops. Complete as many 6.67 mile loops as you wish in the time limit, four laps will be a marathon, five an ultra, or two perhaps for a moonlit half marathon. Moonrise is at 16:44 and the moon is Full... Sunset is 17:53 so there is a couple of hours in the light before the lights go out and the Full Moon rises!

The course is a mix of tarmac roads (about 2%), decent trail (about 10%), not quite so decent trail (about 5%), and the rest is high quality concrete and tarmac farm roads and bike paths, so an awful lot of it is on good runnable surfaces and its pretty flat, about 250' a lap with some lovely views across the Kent Countryside towards Reculver, Thanet, a railway line and the A299. OK, confession, the A299 not quite so lovely, but its something to look at and does make access to the location really simple as only half a mile from a major road.

Shaun Louth took the 3 hour drive to Kent to take part in this event and begin his road to recovery from injury. Assisted with walking poles a very tired Shaun completed 2 laps of the course which was 13.2 miles (Half marathon distance). Although these events are a good drive away they are so friendly, low key and pressure free. Also there isn't a better goody bag or medal anywhere in the UK for your money.

Thanks to Shaun Louth for his Report.

5th Mar - East Midlands Nottingham 10k Holme Pierpoint, Nottinghamshire, Road. 

Entered this race as it was only £18 and you get chip timing, a medal, technical t-shirt, banana and water at the end, really well organised and a great atmosphere. The only downside was the weather, chilly wind and heavy rain once the race got underway. Managed to stay with a couple of Lincoln Wellington runners who dragged me round the first lap and was on for a 43 minute 10k, but as usual the wheels started to come off with a mile to go, although still got a PB of 44:29 so can't moan about that. Great race, definitely one for next year if you want a PB.

Thanks to Gary Britnell for his Report.

5th Mar - Newton Fraction's Half Marathon Grantham, Multi-Terrain. 

Host club - Grantham AC

3 made the short journey to Grantham, what started as ok weather soon turned into winds, rain and even hail by the time the race started. It took a bit of persuasion to get the runners out of the shelter of the stadium. Weather did improve as the run went on, but the 3 miles on the canal path was muddy. The hills were just as steep as usual, but at mile 10 was greeted by a flooded road. Some runners tried to get round, but I decided to go straight through - it was knee deep

Finish times: Mark Ellis 2:01:49, Alistair Whitaker 2:06:03 & Helen Barker 2:42:54.

A well organised race with great support around the course. All finishers received a goodie bag, technical top and the medal has returned.

Thanks to Alistair Whitaker for his Report. 

5th Mar - Newton Fraction's Half Marathon Grantham, Multi-Terrain.

Host club - Grantham AC

Well, finished in a time of 2 hours 1 minute 54 seconds according to my garmin. It was a very wet start, with sleet in places, but as the race progressed, the weather cleared. Not a bad result considering there were two major hills and a canal toe path to negotiate.

Thanks to Mark Ellis for his Report.  

4th March - Rutland Water Parkrun Leicestershire, Oakham, Tarmac paths.

Well, did Rutland Park run this morning and finished with a time of 23 minutes 33 seconds. The course was slightly wet from rain overnight and there's a slight bit of grass that you have to negotiate that's about 1.6 K in, this was very slippy under foot which did cost time, but, nevertheless, not a bad result.

Thanks to Mark Ellis for his Report.

25th Feb - Belvoir Challenge Vale of Belvoir, Leicestershire 15 & 26 Miles, Multi-Terrain.

Mud, Mud and more mud. Ski Slopes to climb, mud hills to climb, grass hills to climb, styles, gates and the odd electric fence also. "On this occasion the bonus was the strongest wind for years, blowing straight in our faces when tired in the second half. This year was Mike's 5th long Belvoir and my first. As always, Mike had a plan for each of the 5 stages and with strategic walks and sensible running the plan worked and ahead of the schedule. The Belvoir Challenge is usually hindered in the first few miles with hold ups at the many styles but this year with route changes and areas new to the Challenge there were no hold ups, infact no styles until mile 11. Running up a very steep muddy ski slope was the first real big challenge and hands and knees were more useful than finding good footing, in my case, though not for Mike, whose skills were evident on his more graceful ascent to the top. The challenge had several new private land access areas which contributed to a really good, hard days running and strategic walking in the castle grounds, along old railway lines, muddy fields, lakes and some of the usual tracks that are in the challenge year in year out. The route was well signposted and marked. The checkpoints, as always, well stocked with drinks, goodies and cheerful marshals. Thank you to Mike Folland for great company. Gary Britnell ran the 15 miler and did a cracking time in the very slippy conditions.

Gary Britnell 2.25.28, Mike Folland 6 hrs 42 mins & Angie Freemantle 6 hrs 42 mins.

Thanks to Angie Freemantle for her Report.

25th Feb - Clumber Park Head Torchers Run Clumber Park, National Trust Park Nottinghamshire

Organised by Tape2Tape Events - 6pm-9pm 8 Mile Trail Run/cross country 'Social Run' 

After seeing this event promoted on Facebook, I thought it would be perfect for me with my 'Dark Sky's Night Marathon' coming up next month. Carl Winwood and I met up with 10 other runners just behind the main entrance to Clumber Park at 5.30pm for a 6.00pm start. As the runners assembled, a quick health and safety brief was discussed by our lead runner Malcolm Beresford. The run took us on a circular route of the park which was amazing at night, we were jumping logs and muddy puddles, ducking from branches and running from really scary noises in the woods. (OK just me and Carl)

With bats, badgers, owls and deer all out at night it was really quite special. Every 2 miles we'd regroup and do a head count. It did mean that the faster runners were often doubling back on themselves in order to stay with the group and the slower runners were pushed to keep up - but nobody minded. (OK, I've never ran that fast in my life!!) A little disorganised in places with the route (got lost) the final route ended at about 10 miles and was hard going in places. The group then left Clumber Park to a local pub, where soup and rolls were put on for £4.95 per head. (Optional Extra)

This was a free event and a spin-off of the already well established runs with the Lincolnshire Wold Head Torchers Group. Don't expect any bling, marshals, goodie bag, water, first aid or cut off routes with these runs just friendly likeminded runners looking out for each other. Malcolm Beresford the organiser hopes to be running these events on a regular basis and which I will share with the Club. Disorganised and slight chaos in places maybe, but 100% would repeat this it was a true adventure and fab run.

Survivors: Helen Barker & Carl Winwood 10.4 miles - 2.08hrs.

Thanks to Helen Barker for her Report.

18th Feb - Belton House Parkrun Belton, Grantham, Lincolnshire, Multi-Terrain. 

Yet again a nice morning for a Parkrun. 3 STR runners in the field with some great times. Gary Britnell 22:26 (Parkrun PB), Jo Calver 30:46 (Parkrun PB) & Mike Folland 35:47 (with a cold).

Thanks to Gary Britnell for his Report.

18th Feb - Rutland Water Parkrun Leicestershire, Oakham, Tarmac paths. 

Well, I completed Rutland Park run yesterday with a time of 24 minutes 11 seconds. I came 34th out of a field of over 200 runners which wasn't bad going. It was a good morning all round perfect conditions almost.

Thanks to Mark Ellis for his Report. 

12th Feb - eDreams Barcelona Half Marathon Spain, Road.

Over 15,000 runners took on the relatively flat course around the City of Barcelona. The weather was overcast and 13 C, humid but thankfully for a sea breeze helped keep you coolish. The start was in 5 waves, starting with a shower of confetti relative to your wave colour and plenty of music. The route is on closed roads, many long and straight. Some support around the city and there were plenty of live bands on the route, from drummers, singers and even a heavy metal band

The finish area was well organised with fruit, water, a medal and a poncho. I was delighted with my time of 2:02:13 for my first ever race abroad.

Thanks to Alistair Whitaker for his Report.

11th Feb - Belton House Parkrun Belton, Grantham, Lincolnshire, Multi-Terrain.  

Chilly and wet underfoot. Happy with 22:45.

Thanks to Gary Britnell for the Result.

11th Feb - The Dukeries 10 Trail run Nottinghamshire. 

Hosted by Hobo Pace

The course takes a clockwise circular route around Walesby on marked paths providing a very scenic and navigation free 10.8 mile run. Small field of no more than 250 runners makes this a very low key friendly event which was well supported by local clubs. Be prepared to get very wet, cold and muddy make no mistakes despite the distance this is tough 'cross country' race which ends up being just short of 11 miles.

Priced at £22.00 it's priced up well, goodie bag includes a Hobo branded running vest, and personalised medal and post run snacks are available in the Hall. Easy to find, easy to park a great fuss free event. My second year of attending and third Hobo Event becoming one of my favourite winter runs and not to be missed for 2018. Unofficial time - 2:30hrs, I didn't take my watch and didn't really care!

Thanks to Helen Barker for her Report.

11th February - The Unusual Suspects Gravesend, Kent, Multi-Terrain. 

Hosted by Saxons, Vikings and Normans marathons

This event is a six hour timed challenge event based out of the Cyclopark Complex at Gravesend (although the routes aren't actually be in the Cyclopark area just using their facilities and parking) and the route is a mixture of trail, bike paths and tarmac and not flat either, but not too hilly either before you panic!

Jayne MacArthur, Louise McCauley and Shaun Louth all ventured to Kent for this event. The course is a 3.74 mile loop which you run as many times as you want in 6 hours. All these events sell out with most of the runners returning from previous events. This is obvious as once the event is well underway there is nothing but encouragement that spreads throughout all the runners. Shaun walked 2 laps and then dropped out. Louise completed 5 laps which was her longest run in a long time covering 18.7 miles and then Jayne competed 7 laps and full marathon distance.

The goody bags are amazing at these events to and the medals are the biggest you will find on the circuit.

Thanks to Shaun Louth for his Report.

29th January - Brass Monkey 10k Rockingham Raceway, Northamptonshire, Road.

Jo Calver and Shaun Louth took the 1 hour drive south down to Rockingham for this friendly 10km. There was a good turnout of 300-400 runners. The raceway is a 1.5 mile oval circuit which you run 4 laps of and then run the length of the pit lane to the finish. This event raises £5000 a year for the Lakeland Hospice which is local to Rockingham. Jo's great running form continued as she finished in 1:06:50 and Shaun run/walked and finished 1:20:03.

28th Jan - Belton House Parkrun Belton, Grantham, Lincolnshire, Multi-Terrain. 

Another large crowd turned out at this great Parkrun. 2 club members were there this week, Louise McCauley 32:17 and Shaun Louth 40:12.

Thanks to Shaun Louth for his Reports.

22nd Jan - Folksworth 15 Peterborough, Cambridgeshire, 15 miles, Road. 

Host Club - Yaxley Runners & Joggers

3 STRs travelled to Peterborough on a beautiful, still if really cold but sunny morning. There were frost patches to beware of but no real problem and the few areas of ice were coned off and well marshalled. Those who have tried it know how carefully it needs to be paced with three big hills on each of the two laps. Feeling legless up the final hill is quite the norm but there is then less than a mile to the finish. Certainly much more demanding than the Club 15 mile route from McDonalds!

It's really well organised and friendly. There was a slight hitch in the shuttle service from the many car parks. But the organisers were well aware, apologised and vowed to do better next year. No goody bag but a technical T-shirt. What more do you need?

Ingrid Williams 2:23:40, Mark Ellis 2:30:36 & Mike Folland 2:44:27.

Thanks to Mike Folland for his Report.

Well, it was a very cold Folksworth race, the sun did come out just before the start which did take the edge off slightly. I finished in a time of 2 hours 30 minutes 36 seconds. It was a 2 lap course with 3 major hills and to do these a second time round was quite a tall order, (forgive the pun!). But, all in all very pleased with my result, considering that I wasn't 100 percent after just getting over a hefty cold, but, I could recommend it for some good hill training!

Thanks to Mark Ellis for his Report.

21st Jan - Belton House Parkrun Belton, Grantham, Lincolnshire, Multi-Terrain. 

Another cold but fine January morning meant there was a big turnout of over 250 runners at the Belton Parkrun this week. Two Sleaford Town Runners went and took part and they were Clare Bergner 40:43 Shaun Louth 40:45.

Thanks to Shaun Louth for his Report.

15th Jan - Resolution Run Rother Valley Country Park, Rotherham, Sheffield, Multi-Terrain.

Choice of 6KM or 12KM route around Rothervally Country Park. 12KM takes you off through a hilly section before dropping down and joining up with the flatter 6KM route. A really beautiful lakeside route, hard course to run, some lovely downhill sections. Mixed terrain of mud, grass, chalk and tarmac makes this race quite hard on the legs. 168 runners took on the 12KM and around 50 took to the shorter run. Very easy to find and get parked up, well signed and marshalled and friendly group of runners. Priced at £15, slightly over priced as you have to pay parking (£4) on top. At the end you choose between a piece of fruit or a cake - Coffee shop is open for a hot drink afterwards.

A brilliant event for those looking to step up from a park run, or need a focus over the Christmas break. Would recommend if car sharing, would have been better if parking and coffee was included.

Helen Barker - 1:33 hrs. (12KM Route) Very slow start many bottle necks at the beginning due to narrow paths and really muddy sections of walking.

Thanks to Helen Barker for her Report.

14th January - Belton House Parkrun Belton, Grantham, Lincolnshire, Multi-Terrain.

Perfect conditions for a January morning meant there could be some good times posted at the Belton Parkrun this week and that is just what happened. Gary Britnell 22:26 (PB), Angie Freemantle 25:44, Jo Calver 31:26 (PB), Paul Freemantle 31:30 and Shaun Louth 39:22. There was over 200 runners at this event, it really is a great local event.

Thanks to Shaun Louth for his Report.