23 miles or 2.3 miles – Looe Pioneers were at both distances this weekend.
On Saturday July 7th 3 Pioneers, Jo Robinson, Dale Staff and Emma Langstaff took on the horrendous Man v Coast challenge. 23 Miles of Cornish terrain beginning at Marazion beach was punctuated with even more horrendous challenges along the route including a vertical kilometre, regular cliff scrambles and a number of full immersions in the sea after jumping from the cliffs.
The night before 32 Pioneers had travelled to Ivybridge, thanks to the Lanreath Community bus and the Looe Lions Love Bus, for the Erme Valley relays, with teams of 4 taking on the near 10 mile event in legs of around 2.3 miles. A fierce downhill start to the race, with runners beasting their ½ mile records, was then followed in the blistering heat with some muscle ripping hill climbs. Looe’s four teams of men and four teams of women all pushed themselves to the limit with the men’s A team finishing 10th out of 134 teams – an impressive achievement. Pioneer runners were:
Oli Thorogood, Oli Slee, Dale Tedder, Mark Deacon; Sean Baker, Paddy Odle, Joe Maywood, Gary Williams; Bryan Maywood, Graham Foster, Martin Gregory, John Gossan; Christian Boyce, Mick Torres, Guy Cooper, Andrew Elliott; Kirstie Maywood, Di Foster, Millie Foster, Emma Collins; Helen Lawes, Emma Baker, Tania Elliott, Ali Catnach; Phoebe Lawes, Edwina Hannaford, Lynne Overd, Julie Gregory; Ania Sobol, Nina Bond, Lisa Jago, Sandra Northcott.
Coast to Coast Challenge
Looe Pioneer, Sean Baker took on a team of cyclists from his work place, Aggregate Industries’ South West offices, They cycled from Ilfracombe to Tamar Bridge (92 miles) whilst Sean ran from Boscastle to Tamar Bridge (32 miles). Sean completed this remarkable feat in just 5 hours and 48 minutes, but was pipped to the post by the cyclist who had arrived just minutes earlier. The cyclists included Jeremy Budd from Ottery St Mary, Simon Wycherley from Bournemouth, Alan Edwards from Newton St Cyres, John Edwards from Luxylan, and Cris Maunder from Plymouth. They took on the challenge to raise awareness and funds for fighting prostate cancer; you can still support them at Aggregate industries south west coast to coast challenge just giving.
Cornwall at the Celtic Trail Championships
At the same time Jo Robinson and Sally Crabb were competing in the Interceltic Trail Running Championships, representing Cornwall. They travelled to Brittany for the 17 mile event with Jo finishing 28th and Sally 69th in a field of near 100 runners. A huge honour for the Pioneers.
Plymouth Half Marathon
Plymouth Half Marathon
On Sunday a team of 12 travelled to Plymouth for the half marathon. In glorious sun Mark Deacon led the team home in 1 hour 25 with the Gibsons fighting it out for second place with Mrs Mandy Gibson beating husband Phil. Ali Catnach, Christian Boyce, Jon Jones, Di Foster, Graham Foster, Kim Tolfrey, Julie Gregory, Brendan Leeds and Lynne Overd completed the team.
Imerys Marathon and Half Marathon
Further west three Pioneers visited the lunar landscape of English China Clay, Imerys. Mark Grassam completed the half marathon in 1hour and 52 minutes whilst Emma Staff was 4th lady home overall in the full marathon, finishing in 4 hours and 4 minutes, an incredible time on a hugely challenging and undulating course. Bryan Maywood finished the marathon in 5 hours and 25 minutes.
The Pioneers have been at it again – not in huge clumps at one race but in swarms across a range of venues including Saltash, Newquay, Ivybridge, Leeds and North Wales.
Mud. Potato fields. Rain. Tunnelling. Mud. Streams. Mud. Occasional road. Incessant rain. Despite the feeling that summer had died and the end of the world was near the Tywardreath Trotter, or slippy slopper, proved to be a real success for all concerned. Fourteen Pioneers braved the elements and the hills to cross the finish line welcomed by a warm and jovial bunch of villagers. It was much appreciated, as was the fine after run service provided by the New Inn. Leading the Pioneers men's' team home was Mark Deacon with Jo Robinson leading in the women's' team. Mark said, " I loved it. The hills and more hills were a real joy; the best way to spend a Saturday evening."
Full results for Pioneers:
Mark Deacon 48.00;
Mark Grassam 54.00;
Jo Robinson 57.36;
Kirsty Webb 1.03.01;
Martin Gregory 1.09.53;
Kirstie Maywood 1.11.46;
Nikki Williams 1.14.56;
Bryan Maywood 1.15.22;
Graham Foster 1.15.54;
Di Foster 1.15.55;
Mandy Kemp 1.24.38;
Julie Gregory 1.34.28;
Lynne Overd 1.36.54
Saturday 8th July, 5 Pioneers also entered the Muddy Duck 10 k race some only 24 hours after the Ivybridge relays and all finished the course ;-)
There are too many people to mention individually but Mark Deacon ran all 3 mentioned races, was the first pioneer home at Redruth and Muddy Duck but also ran TWICE in the relay race - superb effort Mark!!! Jo Robinson was First Lady pioneer to finish at Redruth but lots of very good runs from others with Dale Staff, Mark Grassam and Gary Williams also very high up the field.
Friday 7th July, 4 Looe Pioneer teams (each consisting of 4 runners) took part in the Ivybridge relays with 4 x legs of 2.5 miles. Again some excellent runs and Looe very well represented with lots of noisy Pioneers.
On Wednesday 5th July over 20 athletes attended the 'turkey trot' near Redruth and achieved some valuable points for what already is a record breaking points tally in the Cornish Grand Prix series still with a number of races to go. All pioneers completed the 4 mile circuit in good times, many setting PB's on this short and fast course in very hot weather !
57 Pioneers took part in this 5 mile course and Looe was the 4th biggest club represented at this popular annual event which is an amazing achievement. All athletes completed the course with quite a lot of new members running competitively for the first time. To see the whole squad over the finish line was a great achievement and some of the athletes who only started on the couch to 5k programme in the new year powered home beating many personal bests. Two years ago, only 1 Looe pioneer represented the town at this event, last year there 29 and with this years 57, we are hoping to continue the trend upwards for 2018 !
Dartmoor Discovery on June 3rd. Emma Langstaff and Sally Crabb represented the club/town at this ultra-marathon event around Dartmoor. The race is entirely on road and starts in Princetown, follows a route passing through Dartmeet, Poundsgate, Newbridge, Ashburton, Buckland in the Moor, Widecombe in the Moor and Postbridge before making its way back to finish in Princetown. The current distance is 52.115 km (32 miles 674 yards). Emma finished in 5:16:10 and Sally 5:33:54. A fantastic achieve by the Looe ladies!
A large number of the club members took part in the Plymouth half marathon on Sunday 23rd April with many of the athletes achieving personal bests over this distance and finishing in excellent times. Mark Deacon completed the course in 1:26:50s and came 38th overall from a field of approximately 2800 runners and Jo Robinson also continued her superb form which keeps her high in the rankings of the top female athletes in Cornwall. A huge well done goes to Kirsty Webb also who achieved an excellent time only a short while after completing the Brighton Marathon a few weeks ago.