From Ug to ugh in the mud!

The Umborne Ug is a demanding 10k race which starts and finishes at Umborne Village Hall and attracts runners from far and wide, to enjoy the undulating views of the East Devon Countryside, writes Lesley Roberts.

The organisers did well to change the day of the event from Sunday to Saturday and so avoided the first serious rain since February. The main run started at 6pm and immediately afterwards there was a 2.2K fun run. Organised by Axe Valley Runners, with their usual style for finding the most challenging hills, this was a race you could enjoy with your dog, should you wish.

First of the five tenacious Sidmouth RC ladies back was Naomi Garrick, who came in fourth Lady overall with a time of 52 minutes. Lesley Roberts ran with her dog ‘Toddy’, and what a godsend he was! Finishing in 58 minutes was Becky Robson with ‘Ruby’ and, a bit later, Lynda Hawkins came through with ‘Dudd, in 1.02. Sarah Watkins kept well away from the chaos in front of her, happily finishing in 1.08.

Three young members completed the Fun Run. Six-year-olds, Jed Robson, Freddie and Charlie Roberts, ran the course together, wearing their green vests with pride.

On the same day, Bev Tarry was battling, not with dogs but with horses.

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Always up for a challenge, Bev had entered the Man v Horse Marathon which has been going for over 30 years, starting at the town hall in Llanwrtyd Wells, Mid Wales. There is a 1,000 guinea prize for the runner who beats the horse, but in all these years, man has only beaten the horse twice.

Bev thought it should be the ladies’ turn this year but, although she was the second lady of retirement age to finish, it took her 4.20 hours over the tough 22 mile course.

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Clubs can, however, enter it as a relay and Bev recommends that for next year. It attracts over 500 runners and, with 50 horses taking part, it is claimed to be the largest horse race in the world.

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