For some, autumn heralds the start of open fires, hot soup and woolly jumpers as a hibernation kit ahead of the winter months drawing in. Not so for runners, many of whom relish the opportunity to put in a hard shift without it feeling like a trip to the surface of the sun.
Your local running club, Beverley AC, are no exception. The autumn months bring the opportunity of a variety of distance races, from parkrun 5k, up to road and trail marathons and beyond!
With the club’s membership now swelling to over 200 senior members, numerous notable feats have been achieved so far this autumn. Amongst the plethora of events featuring Beverley runners have been the Hull Marathon, Yorkshire Marathon and 10 Mile Race, Bournemouth Marathon, ‘Hardmoors’ events on the Yorkshire Wolds Way, Scarborough 10k, Bridlington Half Marathon, the ‘Gruesome Twosome’ 10k in Lincolnshire and the Loch Ness Marathon in the Highlands of Scotland.
Some huge personal achievements have been recorded, with the most notable arguably being Jackie Hardman’s triumphant performance at the ‘Ironman’ Triathlon World Championships in Kona, Hawaii. Jackie completed the 2.4 mile swim, 112 mile cycle and 26.2 mile (marathon) run in 14 hours and 23 minutes, placing her 8th female in the 60-64 age category.
Club Treasurer Lucy Stamford was counting miles instead of pennies on 24-25 November, achieving the remarkable feat of running the entire 80 miles of the Yorkshire Wolds Way in 20 hours. Full of beans at the outset, Lucy’s epic journey left her exhausted but elated.
Some club members go the ‘extra mile’ to run in unusual races and Mike Blamires is a pioneer in that respect. At the same time as Lucy was halfway across the Wolds Way, Mike was taking part in the Damdama Half Marathon near Delhi in India, finishing in his first ever podium position of third. Mike dodged cows, pigs, camels, rocks and motorbikes during the race, earning him a large bottle of beer and a trophy at the finish.
There were solid performances from members running their first marathons on home turf in Hull, in September. Graham Justice completed his maiden marathon in 3 hours 14 minutes, with Jess Hobson and Susan McIntyre completing together in 4 hours 16 minutes. In contrast, Frank Harrison completed his 31st Marathon in a time of 6 hours 16 minutes, a remarkable achievement at the age of 79.
Among other notable and far-reaching runs have been Kay Farrow’s jaunt across to run the Umfolozi Park Run in South Africa (which must be the farthest travelled for a 5k run in recent years) plus Alyson Hayward running the Lucerne Swiss City Half Marathon.
With the cross country season now in full swing, it is certain that Beverley AC have a busy few months ahead. All runners are welcome at the club, which meets every Wednesday evening at 6.30pm at the Leisure Centre on Flemingate.