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ATHLETICS: Grantham couple tackle Doddlers half marathon

Caroline and Paul Davis at the finish.
Caroline and Paul Davis at the finish.

Grantham Running Club married couple Caroline and Paul Davis took part in the renowned Sturminster Newton Half Marathon on Sunday.

Hosted by Dorset Doddlers Running Club, the race was held in the heart of the Dorset countryside along narrow lanes and through several small villages. Though the route was described as ‘undulating’, it became apparent later in the morning this was not quite the case.

Pictured, from left, are GRC's Gav Meadows, Nev Chamberlain and Paul Rushworth before the 27-mile run.
Pictured, from left, are GRC's Gav Meadows, Nev Chamberlain and Paul Rushworth before the 27-mile run.

With the race starting at 10.30am, the sun was beginning to feel quite strong on the start line and the gentle breeze was welcome.

The first decent climb came after only a mile and thereafter the course provided plenty of ups and downs!

The middle of the race was relatively easy going but what was not expected was the ascent at 11.5 miles that lasted a whole mile.

A welcome downhill to the finish meant at least there was some energy left for a smile as runners crossed the line.

Paul finished the race in a time of 1hr 36min 26sec which he was more than happy with, whilst Caroline completed the course in 1:57:57. Afterwards, she declared: “So pleased to have got to the end of that one, and even happier to have got back in under two hours.”

Grantham Running Club members travelled to the beautiful Peak District to take part in the Dovedale Dipper event.

Participants could choose between two rural routes across remote Peak District trails.

Paul Rushworth, Gav Meadows and Nev Chamberlain attempted the 27-mile course which called at Hartington, Longnor, Revidge, Wetton, Castern and Mill Dale, before returning to the finish through the magnificent Wolfscote Dale, adjacent to the River Dove. The course involved 3,395ft of elevation.

On the 16-mile route, Mark Hillson, Penny Hodges and Gordon Geach ran together in what were ideal conditions for running with intermittent sunshine and a fresh southerly breeze. Melanie Taylor was accompanied throughout the event by her husband Andrew.

Results: 26-mile – Paul Rushworth 5:06, Gav Meadows 5:22, Nev Chamberlain, 6:34; 16 miles – Mark Hillson, Penny Hodges and Gordon Geach, 3:24, Melanie Taylor 5:52.


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