Athletics: Thornbury Running Club duo enjoy close battles

Gazette Series: Athletics Athletics

THE Naunton Nearly 19 race advertised itself as a great way to say goodbye to the winter blues.

The route takes in 1450ft of ascent, some fun descents, and a few chocolate-box Cotswold villages.

It's now becoming a habit for Thornbury RC's Clare Demarquet and Ros Rowland to enter races together; both being competetive, well-matched and having natural ability.

It is a long race, 19 miles as the name suggests, and far from easy.

Rowland finished 51st in 2:59:33 with Demarquet 56th in 3:01:20.

The two ladies were in action again when they crossed the Bridge to take part in the dark in their third Rogue Run, starting from Canop Cycle Centre near Coleford in the Forest of Dean.

The off-road course of between five and six miles was wet and muddy as could be expected given the current weather conditions.

Again very closely matched, Demarquet was the first of the pair home, completing in 50:13 to be first senior lady and 27th overall, with Rowland (51:59) close behind in 34th and first LV50.

Saturday saw a few club members at the Little Stoke parkrun.

Garry Slater again led Thornbury home, 12th in 18:59.

Paul Thomas slipped back a few seconds from last week to finish 19th in 19:38, followed by Jack Grudgings, 36th in 20:35 and Hugh McPherson, 53rd in 22:09. Judy Mills had the only club personal best of the day, taking 30 seconds from her previous best Little Stoke time to complete the 5k in 25:06, while John Francksen, feeling slightly under the weather, was satisfied with 26:44.

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