Sid runners' Grizzly experience

Once again the hills around Branscombe were alive with the sound of the Grizzly runners and their supporters.

Once again the hills around Branscombe were alive with the sound of the Grizzly runners and their supporters. The event seems to attract runners back year after year for the 20 odd miles of everything that nature can throw at them. This year was no exception with an excellent field, strong winds particularly along the cliff edges, odd spots of rain, a bit of hail, plenty of hills to run up and down, beach to run over and the infamous bog to traverse.Justin Ashby, perhaps inspired by the fact that his wife was running the shorter 'Cub' run and feeling the benefits of his London marathon training, looked very fresh as he crossed the finish line in 2.54.00 for a very creditable 62nd place. Sidmouth RC were surprised to see Ben Chesters on the starting line as he is usually off somewhere orienteering at weekends. Having a free weekend he decided to join in the fun and casually loped in about 4 minutes behind Justin. David Rampersad, on the other hand, seems to be determined to clock up as many racing miles as he can over the weekends and is getting faster all the time, finishing ahead of John Keast who, in his day, would have been much further up the field - poor old feller. David Palmer, whose wife Helen was also running the 'Cub', was pleased to come well in the top 20 per cent of the 1,450 finishers in the main race whilst George Chalstrey, quickly becoming an off- road specialist after years on the track, just missed out on the 31/2 hour mark. He was followed home by Ian Robson who only got a number the day before and so made it yet another family day out with wife, Becky, who did the full Grizzly, although she was missed out in the results. This probably has less to do with bad time-keeping but rather the new hair colour. We have since worked out that she finished on the stroke of 4.30.00 amongst a large group of admirers.Half an hour or so ahead of her were Debbie Marriott and Don Cawthera. These two traditionally run together. Debbie chats a lot and Don is a good listener but recently something has happened. At the 4 Trigs Don finished a few minutes ahead of Debbie but, this time, the positions were reversed. It looks like some serious competition is developing. Chris Robinson ran a large part of the race with Carol Goddard but graciously allowed her to cross the line before him and Kate Stamp has clearly benefited by the extra training she can enjoy while husband Mike is nursing a football injury. She did well, Mike, but we hope to see you back next year. Arthur Vince completed the club entry, just missing out on the five hours - he and Christine, who ran the 'Cub', are both veteran Hashers and Orienteerers.The 'Cub' is about half the distance but still presents a significant challenge. It was introduced a few years back to cater for ladies, young boys and older men but has attracted some very good runners. Naomi Garrick, who has struggled with injury, came good on the day to finish 5th Lady in a time of 1.21.18. Justin's wife, Claire, running for the very first time but, with the more experienced although not lately seen, Cath Miller, put together a very impressive 1.37.33. Just behind them Helen of Team Palmer was in no rush, conscious of the fact that she was going to have to wait for David to finish. Helen Keast knocked a whopping 27 minutes of last year's time.

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