SUNDAY brought the 29th running of Dursley Running Club’s prestigious race, the hilly trail- based Dursley Dozen.

The event hit the capacity of six hundred entries back in November, which was a first, and this bode well for the event, although the heavy rain over the last few months left setting up the course to be more challenging, and also brought down several trees.

So this kept the organisers on their toes keeping the tracks clear.

On the day, though, the sun shone brightly all day making for perfect running conditions, albeit still a bit chilly for the spectators and amazing marshals around the course.

At 10.30am on the nose, the 470 runners who competed, set off from the line and immediately ran up the very steep road section before heading into the woods and up to the golf course.

At mile one at the top of first climb, Dan Anderson made his intentions clear by showing a clean pair of heels to second place team-mate James Everett who likewise had a 15 second lead over the pack behind.

The last runners were challenged somewhat by this first climb and possibly wondered what they let themselves in for. The popped out of the woods a good 15 minutes later.

After three miles, Anderson slightly extended his lead over Everett and, likewise, James extended his lead nicely over the chasing pack, which contained other DRC runners in the form of Mike Crompton and Tim Britton.

The first lady at three miles was DRC’s Robyn Jackson, she was in close competition with Sophie Booth, from Black Pear Joggers, and these two swapped the lead a few times over the course until Jackson re-established control and extended her lead to over 3.5 minutes to finish in a time of one hour 41:51mins.

Meanwhile, in the men’s race, after finishing second last year, there was no way Anderson was letting victory escape him this year and he claimed his first win in a time of one hour 23:48mins, with just over a minutes lead on Everett in second. A further 3.5 mins back was third placed Paul Horsfall, from Gloucester AC.

In the team prizes, Dursley senior men took overall victory with Anderson and Everett joined by Tim Britton (7th) and Mike Compton(8th). The DRC ladies took overall victory as well with Jackson (1st), Margaret Johnson (9th) and Jadie Cotterell (25th) and also the Vet ladies victory with Johnson, Alice Lewis and Jackie Creed.

Johnson was also victorious in the V50 category with a finish time of one hour 51:53mins.

The last runners finished in just over three-and-a half-hours. Lisa Hopkins was DRC’s Lantern Rouge.

Only a few retired through minor injuries or simply fatigue so 453 finished the event.

60 runners from Durlsey Running Club completed the event, plus we had well over that helping on the day, so an amazing show and support overall.