Sidmouth runners show their class

19:53 09 November 2012

Justin Ashby at Rotherhithe - London Marathon. ref shsp Justin Ashby

Justin Ashby at Rotherhithe - London Marathon. ref shsp Justin Ashby

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Milan Goc and Justin Ashby were two men on a mission last weekend, writes Terry Bewes

The destination was Bideford and the plan was to beat 60 minutes for the 10 mile road race that runs from the town, out beyond Instow and then back again along the Tarka Trail.

Both had been close to the magic mark before but a combination of mutual support, tinged with an element of competition, saw them both sneak under their target with Milan on 59.18 and Justin 59.34.

That was beautifully timed but, of even greater significance, was that they finished in third and fourth places respectively. As a club, that has to be one of Sidmouth’s top performances and they certainly gave the local guys a fright. With a couple of back up runners they could well have taken the team prize in a strong field of 250 runners.

All that cross training in the sea and on the bike is obviously paying off.

Two other insomniacs, Terry Bewes and John Docherty, headed off to Kingsteignton on the same day for the 9am start of the Templer Ten. This is a 10 -mile multi-terrain race starting and finishing at The Passage House Hotel.

Continual overnight rain ensured that the off-road sections were muddy and wet.

The first two miles are on the road but then they ran across the fields beside the river Teign and followed a circular route through Stover Woods before coming back through the fields and on to the road.

With the exception of small hills at the start and middle, the course is mainly flat and out of the 231 finishers Terry and John did well in the conditions to finish in times of 1:26:47 (145th) and 1:27:14 (147th) respectively.

Completing a busy weekend and another 10 miler was the more local Yelverton Yomp held on the Saturday morning.

Yelverton is a lovely village and the local community go out of their way to make it a good event.

The hills are, however, quite severe and many runners opt for the one-lap five-miler, some even deciding they have had enough after the first lap and decide not to bother with the second.

Our Sidmouth trio, however, were made of sterner stuff. Cathy Keast thrives on this sort of terrain and clocked up a creditable 1.47.04 whilst husband John, who also has a sub 60 Ten mile under his belt, romped around in 1.19.36.

Splitting the two was big Nigel Bickley in 1.33.30 to end off a very good weekend for the club.

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