BENIDORM 10K & 1/2 MARATHON 03/03/18

Benidorm 10k/Half Marathon – 2018


Twelve Jaguars fought through the snow to get to Luton and (eventually) Benidorm for this year’s Half Marathon/10k event.

The prolonged journey was not exactly good preparation for any race. However, our Friday lunchtime arrival combined with early evening start on the Saturday gave us some time to catch-up.

Both races, 10k and ½ had a conjoined mass start, just downhill from the ‘cubist’ municipal building close by the old town. The route for both races ran along the wide boulevard which is one street back from the sea front. A loop at the northern end of the town, retrace your steps and then north along the seafront before sweeping back down the boulevard. At this stage as we approached the old town, 10k racers went right and back uphill to the finish by the municipal building.

Half marathon runners threaded their way through the old town and out into the southern bay area. A long loop along the esplanade including a mile-long uphill at the southern end of the town proved challenging. This effort was followed by another loop along the northern sea front and back down the boulevard before finishing uphill at the same finish as the 10k participants.

Whilst it wasn’t cold there was some early evening drizzle and standing water. Nevertheless, all Jags got to the finish. ‘Netty’ Yeomanson scoring a PB, Sonya Wragg a Silver club standard and Dee Neal, Silver standard and 3rd in age group (despite suffering a mystery illness). Particularly noteworthy was Andy Mulligan carefully husbanding his 10k effort, closely following doctor’s orders. After-race activities extended long into the night/next morning as Karaoke systems across the resort were battered into submission. Thankfully we didn’t fly home until Monday giving everyone ample time to recover from their exertions!

All in all, an excellent weekend in the company of many like-minded people from across the UK courtesy of ‘Running Crazy’. Special thanks to ‘Netty’ for the effort in coordinating the Jags participation, especially the 48 hrs prior to getting to Luton.

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Sonya Wragg1.57.37SILVER
Stephen Neal2.04.50
Dee Neal2.04.513rd in Age GroupSILVER
Stewart Marden2.14.20
Clare Hicks2.14.22
Dawn Chapman1.00.09
Andy Mulligan1.00.13
Carolyn Gerber1.02.47
Annette Yeomanson1.02.47YES
Sarah Letzer1.13.09

HUNNY BELL XC 26/02/2018


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Junior Jags 1 Lap
Emily Haslam16.02
Georgia Corner20.55
Ralph Lambert-John25.12
Senior Jags2 Laps
Radley Fenn32.46
James Lambert33.22
Elly Young33.53
Nicola Lambert-John36.26
Julian Smith38.11
Katie Fenn42.36
Amanda Haslam43.31
Marion Bensley48.38
Olivia Newstead52.33

TARPLEY 20 MILE 26/02/2018

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We were going to run the Tarpley 20 and it took about an hour to get to just outside Bury St Edmunds and the area looked really pretty. After getting to race HQ I made the all important loo visit and we collected our race numbers and got ready for the race. I had an energy bar then put loads of Vaseline on my feet and ankles, or as my running friend P puts it “I got vazzed up before my run”. I didn’t feel too self-conscious as the men in front of me were slathering loads of Deep Heat inside their compression socks. That’s a new one on me!

We dropped our bag off and found 2 Marathon group besties A and K who were also running and S who’d come to support. A was road testing her London Marathon unicorn outfit and she looked amazing!

After a banana (I’m taking this fuelling thing seriously) we made our way to the start line. I had a tiny water bottle in my hand that Verena had given me and decided to carry it until the next water station. In the end I found the little bottle so easy to carry that I kept it and filled it at each water station.

As we crossed the start line the first thing I noticed was that there wasn’t a rush to get ahead, the runners all jogged at an easy pace chatting to each other. This wasn’t a 10k race where runners were looking for PBs, it was a spring marathon training race and the runners were just looking to get over the Finish line.

Mr H and I don’t run together in races, training runs are different as they are done at “conversation pace” but in a race, everyone has their own goal so we run separately as Mr H is faster than me. I wanted to run slower than my usual pace and build up if I was not in pain so I did 5 miles at 6:00min/km pace and after that started to gradually increase. This was nice because I was comfortable, warming up nicely and chatted to A and K before going ahead.

The weather was beautiful, the route was so pretty and I was feeling really good. Another thing I forgot to mention last week was that Verena has always told me to “activate my glutes” while running but last week the physio told me not to. I wondered if that had been my downfall last Sunday as muscles are all joined so my glutes would have stretched my hamstrings and IT Bands. So I decided to squeeze my little butt cheeks as much as I could and after 20 miles I reckon I now have buns of steel!

From behind I must have looked a right state with my clenched bum, race vest that will not stay on my hips (Dear Jags, can we have new ladies vests please? Love Vikki xxx) and a back pocket full of gels with my lucky stone. I must have looked as if I had a growth on my lower spine.

I had a gel at 9k as I was feeling great and didn’t want to wait until I was tired. There was very little cross wind or head wind and although the route was undulating, most of the hills were down rather than up. The route was a single lap too so we didn’t have to look at anything twice. We ran though some beautiful villages and I had a fair bit of house envy!

I kept an eye on my pace and passed 10 miles at 1:35. My Freethorpe 10 PB was 1:20 so I was pleased that I was finding this pace comfortable but still in good time. I passed 13 miles at 2:04 which was my Lowestoft half marathon time in 2016. Again I felt really good. I had another gel at 18k and chatted to a few runners as I overtook them. I was glad I had not gone out too fast as a few of them looked quite worn out. I started to feel really warm but every now and then I’d pass a puddle with half an inch of ice on it which reminded me how cold I’d be if I stopped moving.

S popped up every now and then which was great for support and to see a familiar, friendly face, he got some fab photos of us all too!

At 25k I had another gel and then heard a cyclist call out “good running Vikki!”. I have to say the marshals were fantastic all the way round but there were also a lot of cyclists going back and forth giving people encouragement. I don’t know whether the cyclists were marshals or just from running clubs giving their runners support but it was a nice touch. As I looked at the cyclist who had called out to me (I have my name on my race vest) I realised he was Tom from Bungay black Dogs RC and TP Fit Coaching. Tom cycled with me for 2 miles and we had a really nice chat which helped me increase my pace and take my mind off the last few miles. As we chatted Tom asked if I’d seen Bill Wyman’s house earlier in the route. I’d craned my neck being nosey at so many houses but totally missed that one! Tom very kindly asked if I needed any rubbish taking away and if I wanted any more gels but I was fine so we parted ways as I headed for mile 20.

At 30k my left knee twinged, Argh! I had one gel left and I didn’t need it but decided to have it anyway to pass the time and take my mind off my knee. At my Marathon training day, the coach said to sip gels slowly over 1-2km as it helps digestion plus gives you something to do!

The next thing I knew I could see the finish line! Mr H was beaming when he saw me, he’d obviously been worried too. I crossed the finish line at 3 hours, 4 minutes and 44 seconds which I was over the moon with, I’d actually sped up for the last few miles, even dipping down to 5:00min/km a few times!

There was no medal although I had known about that, it was just a t-shirt. But it was a nice t-shirt and I was so happy to have completed 20 miles and enjoyed such a nice race that I could live without bling.

Howard Harper2.51.24FTBRONZE
Vikki Harper3.04.44FTBRONZE

VALENTINE 10K 18/02/2018

Valentines 10k Easton, 18 Feb 18

27 Jags turned out on a beautiful bright and sunny morning at Easton college to take part in the Valentines 10k race. For the first time this year, many of us wore shorts and vests and there was a definite feeling of spring in the air.!!

The conditions were perfect and the mood was good as we set off on what turned out to be a lovely route. 

Based on the Easton and Otley College campus the valentines run starts uphill, what seems like a long drag takes you up to the Bawburgh Rd and a left turn takes you north and into Easton village. West along Dereham Rd and left again passed St Peter’s church see’s the field heading out into the open countryside and on to Colton. By now the gentle spring-like heat was keeping everyone warm, the first drinks stop was very welcome. Looping back to Marlingford through a second water station, the route sweeps around to the north, climbing slightly over the last 2ks back onto the campus and the finish. 

All agreed that the race was well organised and the facilities excellent. The Jags all had good races with 14 PB’s, and even though the Road Runners were out in abundance, our brilliant ladies still managed to claim the “Vets Ladies” team award ( Emma Blake, Vicky Tovell and Elly Young ) Elly Young also achieved age group record and Diamond standard, as did Tony Aldbrough, while Ken Bowman achieved age group record and Platinum standard. Emma Blake and Vicky Tovell got age group record and Gold standard.

All agreed that the race was well organised and the facilities excellent. 


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Anthony Alborough38.11YES & Age Group RecordDIAMOND
Neil Button39.56YESGOLD
Melvyn Porter41.02GOLD
Graham Johnson41.30YESGOLD
Thomas Lincoln-Kemp42.11YESGOLD
Stephen Neal43.22FTGOLD
Elly Young43.24FT & Age Group Record & Team win in age groupDIAMOND
Ken Bowman44.16Age Group RecordPLATINUM
Emma Blake44.21PB & Age Group Record & Team win in age groupGOLD
Rebecca Pountain44.43PBGOLD
Paul Emery 45.09PBGOLD
Vicky Tovell45.25PB & Age group record & Team win in age groupGOLD
Phill Henry45.46GOLD
Nouha Tate46.31FTBRONZE
Julian Smith47.15YES SILVER new
Lee Emmett47.58
Chris Johnson49.14FT
Charlotte Reed50.59YESBRONZE
Nicholas Eley53.47BRONZE
Graham Fryer51.23YES
Dee Neal52.20YESGOLD
Julian Jardine53.21
Adele Bushell54.01SILVER
Tamara Mills53.47BRONZE
Sharon Jones55.35YESSILVER
Rachael Cole1.01.37
Caren Maidment1.13.00YES


Cancer Research UK London Winter Run 10km Sunday 4th February 2018 We were pleased to open the curtains to Sunday morning and see that the rain had dried out from the previous day – it’s a winter 10km in the UK so pretty much anything could have happened weather wise and we were very lucky with sunshine. 20,000 runners had signed up with the organisers promising support from penguins, wolves, polar bears and yetis. We were issued with start times in separate waves and were told that we could move back a wave but not forwards. Karen and Tim were in an earlier wave to me so moved back to mine so we could all start together. We walked down The Mall to Trafalgar Square where we could drop bags off and join the back of the queue. The queue was huge but snaked through to the start point very quickly. Bin bags were provided by the organisers to wear pre-run to save freezing in the queue – Tim and I saved a bag for use at the end of the course whilst waiting for our coats. There didn’t seem to be any way for the organisers to know whether we started in an early or late wave as there were no ‘time’ holding pens, just join the queue and crack on. So crack on we did! Karen was off like a rocket weaving her way through the runners, followed by myself and Tim and it was great fun weaving through. Even with the large volume of runners it didn’t feel too hemmed in and there were plenty of opportunities to move ahead of others without feeling frustrated. It was fabulous to be able to run through London in a closed road event and we all reminded ourselves to look up and around at the iconic roads and buildings in the metropolis. There were distance signs along the course which was very helpful, plus an array of musical distractions including (but not limited to) a choir and a steel band. There were plenty of marshals on the course, including the promised wintery animals. The end of the route signed the last 1km and 500m so there was a chance to up the sprint pace to the finish line before collecting the all-important medal. Marshals were very generous in handing out food and drink (coconut water, water, Soreen, and a protein bar) in as much quantity as needed. Once we were reunited with our warm clothes we had a chance to review our times and the organisers had sent a text message of official time almost immediately of crossing the finish line. We all did better than expected, Karen got a 10km PB, I was happy with a decent time considering recent illness and not running since Wymondham Jan 1st 10km, and Tim could hardly walk the previous weekend and finished fifteen minutes earlier than he predicted. The course, however, turned out to be more like 11km (although I guess this just means it was better value for money?!!). In summary, it seemed a well organised event and it was a proud day for us to be wearing orange for The Jags.

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Karen Evans53.40YESBronze
Racheal Cole1.01.30

Freethorpe 10 Mile – Sunday 28th January 2018

Thirty three Jags turned out for the Freethorpe 10 mile. The popular subject of conversation in the toilet queue at the start was what to wear?! The wind was cutting through us and the ones that had arrived in shorts were questioning whether that was the correct kit choice. With the forecast showing a mild 14 degree Sunday and the sun beginning to break through the cloud it was a tough one to call.

This year there was a staggered start with three waves setting off approximately 2 minutes apart. After a gentle warm up we were ready to set off. The beginning of the course saw us heading out of Freethorpe towards Southwood, past the beautiful Southwood Hall and down a gradual downhill before bearing off left towards Cantley. You could see the beat factory in the distance and there was a sweet smell in the air coming across with the wind. Bearing left again we started our journey toward Limpehoe and up our first hill. Whoever says Norfolk has no hills needs to come and run this route! Thankful for all of the hill training sessions we have completed recently, with the Gas Hill efforts there was nothing that the Jags couldn’t handle. This part of the course was quite sheltered so the wind was not being too unkind to us at this stage.

With plenty of marshalls along the route encouraging us and keeping us safe you could continue in your rhythm without worrying too much about the junctions you were crossing or the traffic that was trying to weave its way through the runners. Limpenoe was where we first felt the wind. It hit so hard when we turned out of Limpenhoe towards Reedham that is almost felt like you were running but not actually moving too far. Head down and digging deep up another incline to reach the 4 mile mark, an encouraging Jags supporter and our first water station.

Running into Reedham and along the broad past the Reedham Ferry you could almost mistake it for a summers day. The sun was bright and felt warm, back into sheltered territory where the wind couldn’t get us it was an enjoyable and beautiful part of the course. With some more Jags supporters set up outside the pub it was great to get that cheer of encouragement ready for what was about to come. Having never run this course before I had no idea that I was about to turn a corner and be faced with yet another hill.

Once we had climbed the incline out of Reedham heading back towards the start we had a short flat the recover before another short climb. Turning left we had a relatively flat course ahead of us back towards the finish line. Another drinks station at 7 miles and yet more Jags support, 3 miles to go.

Team mates had previously warned each other of the 2 mile loop at the end, running with the finish line in sight and seeing the runners coming towards you heading that way was mentally challenging. As if that wasn’t enough there was yet another incline ahead and this one felt harder than ever before. Running up towards Wickhampton it was clear that everyone was focused, getting through those last two miles to reach their target point. Just over 9 miles we turned left out of Wickhampton towards the finish. When you turned that corner it felt like the wind had punched you in the face. It hit us hard but there were a great group of marshals there to shout encouraging words telling us to dig deep and finish with strength.

A welcome decline to aid fighting against the wind took us back down before a right hand turn towards the finish line. With plenty of crowd support the heads went down to finish strong, and crossing the finish line to receive a wonderful memorable medal and snickers bar!

A special mention has to go to Emma Blake who finished 3rd lady in her age category with a time of 1:12.20 and Ken Bowman who not only won his age category but also set a new course record for his age category in a time of 1:14.22. This means that Ken now holds the course record in his current and his previous age category.

A beautiful course through the Norfolk countryside, with some amazing marshalls that were encouraging all the way, and all those Jags that weren’t running coming out to support their team mates. I know I couldn’t have fought so hard without them.

An amazing day for Jags with 33 runners, 13PBs, 2 age group records, as well as Emma and Ken’s achievements above. A great day to be wearing orange.

Charlotte Reed

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Antony Alborough1.04.25YESDIAMOND
Neil Button1.07.39YESGOLD
Graham Johnson1.09.14YESGOLD
Melvin Porter1.09.46GOLD
Thomas Lincoln-Kemp1.10.05FTGOLD
James Lambert1.10.21SILVER
Lee Emmett1.11.36YESSILVER
Dean Blake1.12.20SILVER
Emma Blake 1.12.20YES & Age Group RecordGOLD
Stephen Neal1.13.16YESGOLD
Ken Bowman1.14.22PLATINUM
Rebecca Pountain1.16.34YES & Age Group RecordGOLD
Howard Harper1.16.38SILVER
Vicky Tovell1.19.54GOLD
Julian Smith1.20.03FTBRONZE
Vikki Harper1.20.17YESSILVER
Nicola Lambert-John1.20.36BRONZE
Ruth Pilch1.22.12SILVER
Phil Henry1.23.52SILVER
Peter Kean-Cockburn1.27.31BRONZE
Dee Neal1.28.06YESGOLD
Ruth Gainsford1.28.50YESSILVER
Charlotte Reed1.29.45FT
Emma Jordan1.30.04BRONZE
Claire Owen1.31.07BRONZE
Adele Bushall1.31.50SILVER
Tony Wilson1.31.58FT
Rosemary Jackson1.33.27GOLD
John Windham1.33.33SILVER
Paul Emery1.35.00
Angela Bell1.38.15YES
Clive Cartner1.38.18YES
sue Emmett1.42.39FT

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
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