Six brave Belvoir Tri Club members were amongst more than 1,000 entrants in the mass start to the Belvoir Challenge 2017 at the weekend.
Competitors participated in either the 26- or 15-mile route that followed footpaths, byways, tracks and minor roads throughout the Vale of Belvoir. And, with the permission of the Duke of Rutland, the route went through the Belvoir Estate.
Both routes started and finished at Harby Village Hall. Every year the route is varied in order to keep it fresh and interesting for entrants. Checkpoints were approximately every five miles, providing much appreciated free drinks and snacks.
This is a main fundraiser event hosted by the Friends of Harby’s School that takes many hours of organisation, input and support from parents and the local community to make this a successful event. Their aim is to enrich the children’s curriculum and support resource development at school for the benefit of all their pupils.
The Belvoir Challenge is considered by many members of the Belvoir Tri Club, and other local running clubs, to be a fantastic experience.
Suzanne Britz commented: “This was no doubt a tough event that challenged us on multi-terrains, and was wet, muddy and undulating which resulted in more sliding than running, but the cakes stops were great and kept us going.”
First beavers to finish the 15-miler were David Foster 2hr 27min and Oliver Wood 2:27min, followed by first BTC lady Lorna Fox in 3:15, and soon after by Suzanne Britz 3:17 and Gwenda Williams 3:19.
Making his debut into marathon running was BTC member Darren Joint who finished in a very pleasing time of 4:51. He said: “The Belvoir Challenge is an apt name, because it truly was. At the finish I told Claudette, my wife, not to allow me to sign for next year, but time is already dulling the pain and magnifying the glory. So in a couple of weeks I might be ready for the next challenge . . . whether I’m allowed or not.”