The week between Christmas and New Year when we all identified with Bill Murray in Groundhog Day, when we attempted to justify eating a month’s worth of food in a few days, when ‘one’ Quality Street ends up being ‘one tin’ and when it was perfectly acceptable to alternate a mouthful of something unrecognisable wrapped in tinfoil from the back of the fridge with a mouthful of mince pie was also the week of the infamous Abominable Snowman Tough 10.
Amongst the 450 runners, a huge Harrier contingent braved the cold, muddy, pondy (new adjective for 2019!) and mountainous terrain of Cheverton Farm on Saturday 29th December, some admirably taking on the 10 miles and some following up the rear with the equally gruelling 10k route.
Starting off an hour earlier than the 6 mile ‘fun runners’, the 13 serious 10 mile heroes put in some outstanding performances including RH Male Athlete of 2018 – Les Cupis, who stormed home in 2nd place overall and 1st Vet 50, Bryan Jones who came 9th overall and took the 2nd Vet 50 position, Men’s Captain and RH Clubman of the Year, Trev McAlister who was 12th overall and 3rd Senior Male and newcomer Alex Robertson who swept into 13th position overall and 4th Senior Male.
In the 10k race, Justine Bacon produced an impressive 1st Vet 40 finish with the unbeatable Julie King claiming the 1st Vet 50 spot!! I should just add that Julie’s shoes were endearingly held together with tape and string proving that she could, in fact, probably run in flip flops and still leave most of us behind!
Those of us just aiming to get round quicker than last year, proved that our Harriers teamwork is equally as impressive as our amazing solo runners! Nat Rose, Catherine Young, Pippa Sharp, Kate Couch, Jo Beak and myself all took on the challenge as a group, supporting each other and working together to get round. As always, Nat was superb as my guide on a course that was tough enough for anyone to get round let alone having to babysit someone!! The other ladies chipped in too and I was thoroughly spoilt with a chorus of ‘Tree!!’ ‘Rock!!’ ‘Puddle!!’!! They even let me go first down the really steep, rooty decline section (technical term!) yelling something along the lines of ‘Let’s send Sarah down first as she can’t see and will break the fall for the rest of us!!’ Cheers guys!! (Thanks to Kate for actually holding my hand all the way down that bit!!) All but 2 of us braved the pond but all 6 of us braved the beer and jelly babies at the halfway point (after we’d whoop-whooped and frantically waved at Rich and Graham on their 10 mile return!)!! Race nutrition is always of paramount importance!
Captain Trevor was at the top of ‘Hands and Knees Hill’ at the end shouting encouragement and kindly taking photos to humiliate us with on social media later and we were really pleased to see him!
We all crossed the finish line together in a quicker time than last year (which Catherine’s other half filmed!) after a few selfies on the hay bales, obviously!! (We were taking it seriously! Honestly!!)
A superb event and so much fun!! Thanks to GP Sport, all the amazing marshals and volunteers who gave up their time to stand in the cold and to the owners of Cheverton Farm for such a great day and the perfect finish to 2018!! Happy New Year!!
Les Cupis 01:18:02 (1st Vet 50, 2nd Overall)
Bryan Jones 01:23:57 (2nd Vet 50, 9th Overall)
Trevor McAlister 01:24:14 (3rd SM, 12th Overall)
Alex Robertson 01:24:21 (4th SM, 13th Overall)
Dominic Jacobs 01:28:20
Gordon Mucklow 01:34:11
Ken Beak 01:35:04
Graham Gardner 01:43:18
Richard Melville 01:43:18
Sam Cleare 01:49:32
Mike Dignan 01:53:12
Claire Angel 02:13:19
Bob Somers 02:19:43
Results for Abominable Snowman 10km 29th December
Justine Bacon 00:59:03 (1st Vet 40)
Julie King 01:04:44 (1st Vet 50)
Rachel Powell 01:10:54
Paul Taylor 01:12:49
Lisa Robertson 01:14:57
Samantha Fancourt 01:15:56
Stella Gamble 01:19:35
Matthew Sampson 01:20:05
Natalie Rose 01:32:26
Catherine Young 01:32:26
Pippa Sharp 01:32:26
Kate Couch 01:32:26
Sarah Probert 01:32:26
Joanne Beak 01:32:26