Rail and River run fun

Heat and dust affected runners

TWENTY FIVE Sidmouth RC members turned up at Tipton Playing fields to run the Otter Valley Rail and River run, mostly off-road route on tracks, footpaths and fields.

The scenic undulating route of the 10km heads towards the hamlets of Venn Ottery and Fluxton, back into Tipton, then picking up the route of the fun runners, follows the old railway line between Tipton St John and Harpford, returning via the banks of the winding River Otter to finish on the playing field. On route there are stiles and kissing gates, and some uneven footpaths – to say the least.

There was a great turn out and, for those who didn’t want to bake in the heat, there was a two and a half mile fun run.

First Sidmouth ‘ace’ back was Guy Bennett, who has become a solid member in just a short time. With youth on his side, he stormed home in fourth just pipped for third at the post.

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Kit Grierson, in his first ever 10k, paced by the experienced Ben Chesters, was home next, closely followed by the ‘battling duo’ of Iain Burns and Naomi Garrick. At the end there was only four seconds between them and apparently they were in competition mode throughout. Naomi was first Sidmouth lady and second lady overall.

Ian Robson was the next Sidmouth runner home, closely followed by David Palmer, Phil Welsford, Paul Mitchell and Mark Keast all within minutes of each other. Lesley Roberts kept John Perratt and Colin Flood in her sights, but Colin’s high cruising speed saw him increase his lead. Lesley caught Perratt but his ‘no fear’ downhill style saw him move ahead, eventually overtaking Flood.

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John Chesters, Neil Rutter and Jane Hemsworth, Lynda Hawkins and Bill Valentine were next and Helen Palmer, Becky Robson, Richard Hedger, Sarah Watkins, Louise Brown and Ruth Chesters all finished strongly despite the heat taking its toll.

Results as follows: Guy Bennett (40.53), Kit Grierson (42.23), Ben Chesters (42.48), Iain Burns (45.30), Naomi Garrick (35.34), Ian Robson (48.04), Dave Palmer (48.29), Phil Welsford (48.46), Paul Mitchell (49.27), Mark Keast (50.14), John Perratt (50.18), Colin Flood (50.33), Lesley Roberts (51.19), John Chesters (53.05), Neil Rutter (54.16), Jane Hemsworth (54.17), Mark Seward (55.22) Lynda Hawkins (55.30), Bill Valentine (55.32), Helen Palmer (56.29), Becky Robson (57.00), Richard Hedger (58.25), Sarah Watkins (1.00.25), Louise Brown (1.02.41), Ruth Chesters (1.08.27)

l The Sidmouth Runners are now in serious training for the Festival Run on Sunday, August 8.

Entry forms are on the Sidmouth Running Club website.

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