First Axe Valley running festival

PUBLISHED: 10:00 12 August 2009 | UPDATED: 23:57 15 June 2010

COMING UP on September 4, 5 and 6 there will be a new AVR event, a Running Festival at Manor Farm Caravan and Camping Site, Seaton.

COMING?UP on September 4, 5 and 6 there will be a new AVR event, a Running Festival at Manor Farm Caravan and Camping Site, Seaton.

This will be a social, non- competitive running weekend with many routes of various lengths. It will be especially suitable for new runners and beginners as there are many short runs planned. There will also be walks for non-runners to enjoy, plus a Saturday evening barbecue. See the web site for more details www.axevalleyrunners.org.uk. There will be discounted prices for two nights camping at the venue.

l On Wednesday, 11 AVR's ran in the Haselbury trail 10k multi- terrain race. It was a fantastic night for it, but the previous few days' rain had made the course very slippery, as well as the ford that little bit higher. Strong wind from the night before had also knocked down two trees on the course, so a quick jump over these was an extra challenge. Once again, Luke Reed produced a fine performance, finishing seventh in 43:01, just missing out on the sprint for sixth spot. Chris Keeffe was next to finish, 17th in 46:09, and was very glad to have held of Chard RC's Neil Plumridge who pushed him all the way. Ian Apps came home 33rd in 49:06. Eleanor Wood was 37th in 50:21 and took the 1st female vet 45 prize. Emma Kiernan, unfortunately, had a bad day, suffering from a stomach bug, but she bravely decided to continue on to the end and, under the circumstances, performed terrifically to finish 69th in 54:59. Steve Reynolds, running his third race in five days came 73rd in 55:27. It was good to see Tim Sibley out having a crack at his first race. He ran very well and came in 96th taking 59:23

Three AVR's had a go at the supporting fun run. Sue Venn was first to finish in 39:16, her first race for some time. It was really good to see her back on the run.

Bethany Sibley ran very well, finishing second in 47:02. Harry Moore finished third in 52:13 and took the oldest competitor prize for the third year running. James Sibley had a go at the junior race, and he finished fourth in 33:12.

On a sunny and warm Sunday morning, runners braced themselves for a hard slog up grassy fields to the top of Peak Hill in Sidmouth. It was the start of the increasingly popular 10k Festival Run, now in its eighth year. As last year, the summer rain of recent days kept parts of the woodland trails and tracks wet, slippery and muddy to add further interest to the sharp climbs and stoney descents through Bulverton Plantation. Luke Reed moved like quicksilver, oblivious to the difficult terrain and exceeded his expectations to finish a magnificent sixth in 42:56, beating several well known and established runners for the first time. Richard Hale used the 'slow start and finish strong' technique, targeting runners ahead then catching and overtaking throughout the whole race. He was very pleased with his 52nd place in 53:29. Harry Moore found the boggy going a tad tough, finishing 184th in 1:58:44. Many thanks to Sidmouth Running Club for the faultless organisation and planning.

l On Friday, this year's Grizzly and Cub Run were celebrated at Bridget and Chris Keeffe's abode. A great time was had by all watching the Grizzly footage as filmed and produced by our very own Graham Vere and Gary Davis. Tales and photos of achievement were spun and Ian Apps proudly displayed his 1st AVR Trophy. The night was a good success and will now be an annual event, but will be a month after the Grizzly.

This will enable virgin Grizzly and Cub runners to hear and watch the achievements of others, thus giving them confidence and encouragement to take part in such a great event.


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