It was a hot day for any kind of long distance event but 105 completed Sunday’s Fairlands Valley Challenge.
The annual Fairlands Valley Challenge is a self guided trail run through the countryside and villages in East Herts surrounding Stevenage and is organised by Fairlands Valley Spartans.
Normally five distances are available from 10k to 50k, including half and full marathon distances. Participants are supplied with snacks and drinks at Aid Stations/check points spread out on the course.
With a severe Amber weather warning in effect, and other races around the country being cancelled, the event had to be scaled back and altered.
The 50k option was dropped and the marathon and 18 mile routes changed to two laps rather than one big lap.
Nevertheless 107 participants including 33 Spartans turned up looking for adventure and given instructions to be back soon after 1pm before the heat of the day would get too unbearable.
Some sensibly in the conditions switched down distances but all returned safely by 2pm in good spirits having had a challenging but fun time.
Despite the heat some runners managed to complete the marathon distance in around 3 hours 35 minutes.
NICOLA ANDERSSON said, “The Fairlands Valley Challenge Sunday morning, it had to be early to beat the heat and I was up for the 18 miles to begin with… I’ll eventually go for a longer than a half marathon one day, this being my fifth run over the distance and second official half event but that was one hot day. Our self navigated route to Watton at Stone, through to Datchworth and back on the multi terrain trail route through fields and woods. I provided the map instructions though Tony Randfield led the way for Carolyn Linsell and myself with his navigation skills. Myself being a first timer I’d either get lost or take much longer. It was a hot one but we got the 13plus miles done.” Nicola, Carolyn and Tony finished together in 3 hours 13 minutes.
Spartan ADRIAN BUSOLINI, perhaps benefitting, from his ultra advantages was fastest in the half marathon event more than 20 minutes ahead of his nearest rival.
DANNY SCANLON commented, “I ran the FV challenge for the 1st time today. Thoroughly enjoyed my half marathon and was great to run with Mr & Mrs Archer! Lovely morning, lovely run and pretty much everyone involved had a smile on their faces! Nice 2.14.29 morning half in the sun.”
FVC professionals SHARON CROWLEY and CATHY CRAIG said, “We had a super day out completing our loops in 5hrs 30 for 20 miles! The 1st 13 went quickly, then out for the next lap, by this time the heat was taking its toll, so one foot in front of the other and get to the end! The 2 Spartan ladies going the furthest…we think!”
A big thank you to TIM ROBINSON and all his volunteer helpers who were out in that heat.
2022 Fairlands Valley Challenge Provisional Results.
Kartik Sharma 1:14:48 Callie Chapman 01:47:20 Claire Emmerson 01:51:20 Sean Millwood 01:51:21 Paula Dunne 01:51:29 Sally Pickles 01:59:56 Judy King 01:59:58
Tony Willson 02:00:00 Rachael Miller 02:00:01 Steph Biggar 02:00:21 Hannah Sypula 02:00:22 Jon Sypula 02:00:23
Adrian Busolini 01:35:59 Danny Scanlon 02:14:51 Chris Watling 02:17:43 Thomas Sauka 02:23:21 Susan McAneny 02:25:19 Zoe Jackson F 02:25:19 Vicky Archer 02:27:03 Wendy Tharani 02:49:20 27 Luke Gurney 02:59:23 Christine Zverev 02:59:23 43 Nicola Andersson 03:13:53 Tony Randfield 03:13:54 Carolyn Linsell 03:13:54 Darryl Stevens 03:41:03 Paul Holgate 03:48:46 Tricia Hopper 04:08:17 Karen Liddle 04:08:19 Robert Hardy 05:17:29 Pauline Hardy 05:17:29 Roger Biggs M70 05:17:32
Stuart Archer 03:24:46 Cathy Craig 05:25:14 Sharon Crowley 05:25:15
Clare Moore 05:27:50 Davie Stafford 5:27:50
Grant Top Ten in World Masters
One for the international scores on the doors. Spartan GRANT RAMSAY was in Tampere, Finland for the World Masters Championships. He was sixth in the 50 plus steeplechase race with 13 minutes 2 seconds.
Ramsay was delighted with sixth place to achieve his goal of finishing in the top 10, which had a strong field.
Adrian’s Tough Century
ADRIAN BUSOLINI recently ran a 161 kilometres off road and undulating World Series Major at Val D’Aran in the Pyrenees.
He completed the 100 miles in 32 hours 15 minutes 59 seconds for 35th place.
Parkrun Highlights Saturday 16th July
As temperatures soared across the UK, thirty-six Fairlands Valley Spartans headed out to run in Parkrun events on Saturday morning.
In Stevenage, ASHLEY JOHNSON, who ran a parkrun PB time to finish as the third female overall in 20 minutes and 55 seconds, was joined by JOHN HARRIS, the sixth male to finish the course in a time of 19 minutes and 53 seconds and, finishing as the 100th male, MATT CLARKE as he completed his 100th Parkrun event with a run of 31:06.
Also running a parkrun PB was YORDAN YORDANOV in Basingstoke with a time of 25:17.
Many Spartans were off trying new courses. JONATHAN PARR ran Whitstable Parkrun in 17 minutes and 34 seconds where he was second, while ANNABELLE WHITE finished Wimpole Estate in 32:05 and NICK KLEANTHOUS ran the course at Clacton Seafront in 26:24. ALISON and MARTIN WOOD completed The Pastures (Alnwick) course in 22 minutes and 30 secondss and 25 minutes and 43 seconds, respectively, as DARRYL STEVENS ran Henlow Bridge in 38 minutes and 41 seconds, and JAMES MCSWEENY Mildenhall Hub Parkrun in 26:19.
|Stevenage (24 FVS)||7||6||John HARRIS||19:53||Top Ten. Season PB.|
|15||3||Ashley JOHNSON||20:55||3rd woman. Parkrun PB.|
|87||76||Jim BROWN||27:19||First in age|
|137||100||Matt CLARKE||31:06||100th parkrun|
|Basingstoke||87||82||Yordan YORDANOV||25:17||Parkrun PB|
|Wimpole Estate||190||53||Annabelle WHITE||32:05|
|Clacton Seafront||40||36||Nick KLEANTHOUS||26:24|
|Rutland Water||118||84||Chris HOLLAND||28:36|
|Letchworth||7||7||Nick GILL||21:43||Top Ten|
|The Pastures||16||1||Alison WOOD||22:30||1st Woman|
|Bolberry Down||39||28||Nigel STRONGITHARM||25:56|
|Henlow Bridge||121||65||Darryl STEVENS||38:41|
|Mildenhall Hub||17||16||James MCSWEENEY||26:19|