Graham Newton leads AVR members home at Otter Rail & River Run

 Graham Newton leads AVR members home at Otter Rail & River Run

AVR members at the 2021 Otter Rail and Rover Run. Picture AVR

Usually, the runners competing in the annual Otter Rail and River Run have nothing more to worry about than whether they’re wearing enough sun cream, writes Dave Mutter.

However, after all the unseasonal rain, things were a little different this year as there was mud, mud and more mud to contend with!

Despite these, 216 runners braved the weather for the start of the 10k event at Tipton St John Playing Fields.

It’s a beautiful scenic route taking in a stretch along the banks of the River Otter and then through woods and fields, along the old railway line and the final challenge of running through a field full of cows.

There were fine performances from all the AVR’s who took part.

Graham Newton was first AVR home in 50:07, a time that also saw him finish as first MV70 and cross the finish line as 36th overall.

The first AVR lady was Caroline French in a time of 51:54, 43rd overall and second WV35.

Next home, in terms of AVR, was Cliff Marriot, 52:00 44th, followed by Ron Seward, 52:37, 46th and second MV70; Margaret Pearce, 54:47, 57th and second WV45; Mark Day, 60:15, 81st; Louise Rawlings, 60:37, 87th; Shaun Vinnicombe, 66:11, 122nd; Charlotte Horlock, 69:46, 143rd; Denise Burges, 72:04, 159th; Rachel Hiscock, 72:31, 164th; Maxine Sweetman, 79:25, 187th and Shirley Salter, 81:15, 193rd. 

Well done, to all of them for managing to stay upright and not succumbing to the mud.

In other AVR news, Jon and Gill Day competed in the Killerton Duathlon which comprised of a 5k run followed by a 19k bike and then a 1.5k Run to finish.

The first 5k Run route was around the Killerton Parkrun, which, after all the sudden rain, was really muddy with a few lake size puddles to run through.

Jon’s times were: 20:58 for first run, 36:49 for bike and 12:50 for last run. Gill’s times were 32:26 for first run, 47:04 for bike and 8:32 for the last run.

Due to the Pandemic, the December 2020 Christmas Celtic Trail Half Marathon was postponed to Saturday July 10, 2021.

This meant Richard Hale running the second of two pre entered trail races in six days! The Coed Morgannwg Way follows ancient tracks of Celtic origin mostly stony, wet and muddy, through vast mountain woodlands, and exposed boggy moor.

It’s a West to East linear route starting in Resolven in the Neath Valley of South Wales. Beginning with over 2,000 ft of steep ascent, it finally descends to the Dare Country Park in Cwmdare in the neighbouring Cynon Valley 13 long miles later.

There were only 13 finishers with Richard crossing the line in eighth place with his time being 2:45:05.

David Cook won the July AVR 4k handicap race in 19:16.

Next home was Paula Cooke, 25:32; Keith Agland, 19:40; Sarah Whelan, 25:08 and Andrew Hartnell, 19:08. All of the top five broke their personal best (PB) time for the run.

Pam Goddard leads the rankings with 109 points with Sarah Whelan sitting second on 105, Eleanor Wood is third with 99, Jon Day sits fourth with 91 and fifth is Paula Cooke with 89 points.

Stephen Birley

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