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.
Looe Pioneers were well represented at the Virgin London Marathon with Laura Rosser, Joe Arkley, Kelly Prutton, Peter Heywood and Victoria Thomas all with superb runs over this famous course.
Legend has it that in 490BC Philippides ran 26 miles in hot summer from the Battle of Marathon to Athens to announce the battle had been won; he then died. Five Looe Pioneers braved the scorching heat of an early summer to compete with the aptly named Philippides Shepley completing the Brighton Marathon as part of his preparation for the Five Marathon Challenge.
The Cornish Run; he will run with seven mates the length of Cornwall, completing 5 marathons in 5 days from May16th to 20th. Support him at www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/cornishrun
Philippides, Mandy Gibson led home the team with Laura Arkley just 15 minutes behind after jettisoning her husband who finished in 4 hours and 28 minutes. Philippides and Kirsty Webb crossed the line together, after mutual support through the torrid heat, to bring all the Pioneers home.
Mandy Gibson 3.58.31 (379th woman out of 8110)
Laura Arkley 4.12.25
Joe Arkley 4.28.45
Phillippides Shepley 4.39.48
Kirsty Webb 4.41.52