Athletics: Hopkins leads way for Thornbury in Scotland

Gazette Series: (6314391) (6314391)

SIX Thornbury Running Club members spent last week in the far north of Scotland competing in the Cape Wrath Challenge; five running events in six days.

Rob Hopkins completed the hilly and warm half marathon in fifth place in 1:35:35 in front of 10th place Nick Langridge, who was first MV60 in 1:39:04.

Arthur Renshaw's earlier London marathon training paid off with a time of 1.52.48.

Pete Mainstone finished in 1.59.04 and Judy Mills was first LV50 in 2.01.14.

Helen Renshaw ran the 10k option in 64.21 and was first LV60.

She finished fifth overall and first LV60 in the 4.5 mile hill run in 46.41.

Over the longer course, Rob Hopkins came ninth in 38.19; Langridge was again first MV60 in 41.53 with Pete Mainstone finishing in a time of 47.44 and Judy Mills 51.09.

Arthur Renshaw suffered a hamstring injury and retired in the hope that he could compete later in the week.

Wednesday's event was a multi-terrain of 10 miles run in ideal conditions with a five-mile option, which the Renshaws ran together in 67:55.

Over the longer distance Hopkins was seventh in 1.19.10; Langridge 11th in 1.24.04 Mainstone 27th (1.40.25) and Mills 28th (1.41.03).

On Thursday a 3.5-mile target-zero beach run allowed some recovery.

It was also a fancy-dress event and most of the Thornbury team found themselves painted yellow and dressed as minions.

After a rest day conditions were again ideal for the marathon, the final four miles being run after a 20-minute ferry crossing.

First Thornbury finisher was again Rob Hopkins, ninth in 3.29.13, followed by Langridge, (3.35.53), Mainstone (4.41.53) and Mills, suffering from another hamstring problem (5.09.04).

Following the race came a presentation meal and a chance to tot-up club trophies.

Langridge won the Vet 60 marathon prize, Helen Renshaw was part of the three-person team which came first over the marathon distance, Arthur won the male Target Zero prize having estimated his time to within seven seconds; Mills was awarded the Most Improved Runner trophy for her performance on the first three days, and Mainstone was given the Race Director's Award for outstanding and all-round enthusiasm, encouragement and help.

Having been first Club member to finish in every race, it seems unfair that Rob Hopkins failed to take home any prizes.

The inaugural Stroud Trail Marathon was held recently and Thornbury's Judy Nutting decided to try it out.

She finished in five hours, 20 minutes.

A number of club members turned out for the Berkeley 10k.

First home for the club was Jeff Davis, 66th in 40:58.2, while two athletes were second in their age categories; Sandra Webber 152nd in 47:41.5 (FV50) and Gareth Thomas 181st in 49:58.6 (MV70).

Other finishers were Kevin Arnold 74th (41:41.5), Jack Grudgings 84th (42:22.3), Hugh McPherson 136th (46:42.9) and Nigel Hale 201st (52:17.3).

Sandra Webber and Richard Phillips travelled to the Taunton Deane Francis Clarke Triathlon, where both were third in their supervet categories in the sprint event.

Phillips had a great swim and finished 50th overall in a total time of 01:13:56.1, while partner Webber's time was 01:27:17.2 to come 154th (22nd female) following a good run.

It's clearly a family thing as Ross Phillips and Natasha Phillips took part in the novice section at the same event.

Ross had the third-fastest bike stage, which helped him to first place in the senior male category, while his sister took third prize in the senior female class.

At the Little Stoke parkrun on Saturday, Jim Godden achieved yet another personal best time of 19:06, chased by Garry Slater, 19:11.

Daniel Harding ran a strong 20:51 as did Malcolm Carr, 26:33.

The two lady runners were Karen Carr, 27:19, and Rebecca Dunsford, 33:49.

Mitchell Fussell did his second Cheltenham event but with a time of 25:40 was unable to improve on his previous performance.

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