Cresswell takes on the Wyre Forest

Duncan Cresswell was the only Newent Runner in race action this weekend. He made the trip to The Wyre Forest National Nature Reserve, for the Dirt Run Wyre Wizzard trail half marathon.
Over thirteen miles of farm tracks and Muddy trails, and over 1500 feet of climbing awaited. Duncan struggled through the early miles, not helped by debris from weather damaged trees littering the trail. Despite all of this, he managed to settle into a rhythm and enjoy the scenic surroundings. Picking himself up from a mid-distance fall, he wisely decided to walk up some of the steeper trails, where it was difficult to find a grip. With nothing else to give at the end of the event, he got across the finish line to a handful of Haribo and an attractive marble trophy.

Duncan achieved a time of 2:33:40.

The Sunday social trail run involved a short drive to Dymock, where five members of Team Tango, Claire Swift, Jenny Stinchcombe, Vikki Hughes and run leader Chris Barber, ran poets path one. Shielding eyes from unexpected sunshine, they headed off from St Marys Church and picked up the path from the minor road into Ledbury. It had been a while since Chris had run this route, about ten months, so it was a pleasant surprise to find new signposts and kissing gates and steps, replacing rickety stiles, on much of the path. There was mud, a Barber trail run would not be complete without it ! But it was all manageable.

The first four miles involved a lot of climbing, up to Redmarley, before then heading west toward Ketford. The views were astounding, from May Hill, to The Malverns. The Leadon Valley is indeed a bit of a hidden treasure.  The group had the path pretty much all too themselves, and before everyone knew it, Dymock Cricket Club had been reached, and the end of that particular poets path, eight moderately taxing miles in the bag.

The “roadies” headed for Gloucester, and one of the regular Costa runs. The Costa coffee shop in the retail park at St Oswalds Rd, serves as both a meeting place and somewhere for post run refreshments.  The route heads through the city and into the docks, and then picks up the towpath along the Gloucester to Sharpness canal, braving stony faced anglers, and then according to what distance people have chosen, a turnaround point is reached and the route retraces its steps.

There were a number of distance options, from 10k  to 14 miles. Some members wanting to get miles in the legs in readiness for early season half marathons, especially The Forest Of Dean event. Emma Blewitt, Helen Knowles, Jonathan Miles, Russ Dyer, run leader Clive Jones, Karen Apted, Liza Barber, Lisa and Mike Mansfield, John and Yvonne Featherstone, Mark Cryer, Adrian Fishpool, Lynn Latham, Carol Loade, Sally Taylor, Teddy Barnes , Andrew Callard and Stephen McAteer contributed to a bumper NR turnout, along with some guest runners.