Reepham XC 10k – Sunday 14th January 2018

Mud, mud, mud, oh and a random 6ft stack of hay bales. Then more mud. This was the Reepham XC event. Having run in the Horsford XC series this winter, I asked my friend ‘is it as muddy?’, they lied ‘No…’. The joke was on them, I love running in mud, it reminds me of growing up on a pig farm, either that or I like to pretend I’m Rambo. The event was really well organised, starting from the ornate Witwell steam railway station, two gruelling loops totalling approximately 10km but my friends Garmin said 5.6 miles. Anyhoo…in a race like this distance is not the point, it’s challenging for very different reasons. Coming out of multiple hip deep muddy sections with your trainers full of ice cold water, then jumping several ditches, leap elegantly over hay bales, hurdling another ditch, run a bit more, climb some stairs, then duck under a fallen tree, feels amazing, but it shouldn’t, but it does, and this only describes an 800m section of the course! Basically, you end up considering ankle deep mud as respite.

Lots of Jaguars had turned up to get muddy, but the biggest applause should go to the two Junior Jags, running one lap of the adult course, in the junior race. Georgina Blake finishing in a fantastic 14th place in 27:01 and Georgia Corner in 24th place in 33:34, having never run further than 2 miles a great achievement for Georgia. The adults did two laps. Notably it was new member Marion Bensley’s first race for the Jaguars, a brilliant effort for her first race, finishing in 1:15:19, good for 128th, a muddy welcome to the club for Marion! Eleanor Gaskins had a speedy run finishing 3rd Lady and 20th overall in 46:26, narrowly outsprinting Ben Gaskins who finished 21st in 46:31 (I think they shook hands after). Dean Blake came across the finish line in 44:19, he had company, his dog Bella, they were the first dog and human but Dean couldn’t quite outsprint Bella so she got the medal. Jackie Gooch finished in 1:02:44, in 84th place, especially good given she spent some time finding a trainer that had been squelched off her foot by one of the boggy sections. Thomas Lincoln-Kemp finished covered in mud and some random blood, not serious but it looked heroic, in a great time of 44:57 good for 17th place. Scott Shrubsall was 33rd in a great time of 49:02 and still smiling. I managed to finish 11th in 43:52. So well done Jaguars, if you enjoyed the mud or think you might (excellent strength endurance training) maybe try the Horsford XC (hip deep mud and climbing over tree trunks) on February 4th, there is a one lap junior race too! If you don’t fancy it, then come and watch, it’s definitely a good spectator event and there are some Jags placing high in their age categories who would love the support or an embarrassing photo!

Jason Corner

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Jason Corner11th place first Jag Home 43.52
Dean Blake & Bella14th place first dog home44.19
Thomas Lincoln-Kemp17th place44.57
Ellie Gaskins3rd Female46.26
Ben Gaskin46.31
Scott Shrubshall49.02
Jackie Gooch1.02.44
Marion BensleyNew member1.15.19
Georgina Blake14th place27.01
Georgia Corner24th place33.34