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Grantham Running Club's Nick betters 100 mile PB despite injury

Nick Payne, of Grantham Running Club, successfully completed the North Downs Way 100 Mile Race.

The event was run by Centurion Running who specialise in organising 50 and 100 mile events in the south of England.

The race began at the start of the North Downs Way in Farnham in Surrey, with the event finishing in Ashford in Kent.

Nick Payne of Grantham Running Club having completed the North Downs Way 100. (16058140)
Nick Payne of Grantham Running Club having completed the North Downs Way 100. (16058140)

The course was undulating with more than 10,000 feet of elevation. The terrain was mainly on trail including woodland, over tracks and through fields.

The event was very well organised, with an aid station on average every seven miles, each serving a mini-buffet including sandwiches, sausage rolls, crisps and cake, as well as energy drinks and Coke.

The weather conditions were not too warm considering the race was run in the middle of summer, with a top temperature of 24 Celsius in the day, dropping to a minimum of 14 degrees at night.

Nick completed the first 50 miles in 10hr 45min. An injury in the second half of the race slowed Nick’s progress, however, and he finally finished in 28:50:36, which placed him 157th out of 188th finishers. The drop-out rate was 34 per cent.

Even though the injury did not allow Nick to complete the course in the time he was hoping for, he still completed it around seven hours quicker than his previous 100 mile best.

Nick received a belt buckle and also a T-shirt for completing the event.

This was also Nick’s 100th official marathon/ultra marathon which allows him to become a full member of the prestigious 100 Marathon Club. Nick was presented with his 100 Marathon Club shirt at the finish by one of his running heroes, James Elson, who has represented Great Britain at ultra-marathon events.

Nick said: “I was really pleased to finish the event, even though the injury I suffered after 65 miles did not allow me to complete the course in the time I was hoping for. It was a real test to finish the race as I was in a lot of pain.”

The 2019 North Downs Way 100 was won by Mark Darbyshire in a new course record time of 15:18:41. The first lady was Karen Hacker who finished in 20:40:38.

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