Worksop Harriers Big in the Backyard World

Created by : Amy Brooks On : Wed, 03/06/2024 - 23:12
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Mammoth miles run this weekend as the Rasselbock Backyard Ultra took place at Sherwood Pines and with 8 Harriers in amongst the 150-ish runners, there was the air of a club day (and night…and a second day out!) as not only were there some excellent runs done but a fantastic club collective showing going on as many gave up both time and sleep to push the runners on to great things! Starting at Midday on the Saturday runners, runners have exactly one hour to complete a 4.166 mile trail loop of Sherwood Pines that brings them back to the start point and base camp. Runners may cover the loop as quickly as they like with the only requirement that they are back on the start line ready for the next lap, on the hour, every hour, until there is only one left standing. Base camp houses whatever the runners think they will need to keep them going including the all important crew that makes running so much more than an individual achievement. 4.166 is an odd-distance you may say, but the trick here being 24 laps of 4.166 miles means 100 miles covered in under 24 hours; a coveted ‘gold-standard’ for many the ultra runner!

Every single Harrier made themselves an official ultra runner, covering over the marathon distance. Stu McCluskie had his first taste of the BYU as he become the first DNF on 7 laps for 29.2 miles, whilst Kate Thorneloe cut in to double figures with 10 laps (41.7 miles). Finishing in the very early and cold hours of the morning, first time BYUer Hannah Miller hit 15 laps (62.5 miles) whilst Henry Brady surpassed last year with 16 laps (66.6 miles). It would be another 8 laps before the next Harrier DNF four kept going chasing the elusive 100 dream with great success as Natalie Cunningham, Chris Johnson and Adam Jonczyk hung in right to end, ringing the DNF bell on an incredible 24 laps, covering the 100 mile in under 24 hours, finishing exhausted, relieved but extremely satisfied on a beautiful cool but sunny morning to welcome the runners in. Our final harrier was back this year with a desire to set the record straight after narrowly missing the 24 laps last year, falling short by just 2 laps. No such, misery this time as Matt cruised in for 24 laps with energy still left in the tank and went on to chase those missing 2023 laps to finish on 26 laps for an incredible 108.2 miles and to make it 200 miles from two BYU.

As mentioned earlier, whilst running is often thought of as the sport of an individual, we at the Worksop Harriers know you can achieve so much more as a team and that full team support was on-show no more so than at the BYU where not only were plenty on hand to cheer and support but special shout-outs go to several individuals who gave up much time and sleep to crew for our runners. Sam Thorneloe was on full duty for wife Kate before staying to support other runners, Julie Wragg was on full duty in the Harriers tent before Adam Turner put in the night shift to make sure help was on hand throughout the night! Finally, a full 26 hours of care and support made sure Matt Daly could achieve his ambitions courtesy of Fiance Hannah Battenberg! A fantastic weekend of running for everyone involved weather in the running shoes or in the support crew!

Sticking with support crews and also on Saturday, the Harriers were on hand to make the English Independent Schools XC happen. The competition is the national final for independent schools up and down the country and hosted right here in Worksop we had plenty of volunteers to cover the course and make sure the young athletes could focus on the competition across a variety of distances. 

Still off road and VERY muddy at Belvoir Castle, Sam and Paul Marriott were joined by Tanja Maric and took part in the Belvoir challenge. Certainly not a PB course with plenty of hills to go with the mud bath but Sam and Tanja completed the challenging marathon in just over 6 hours whilst Paul made a very literal last minute decision to enter and despite electing to take on the course in some very unsuitable road shoes still finished a respectable 19th in 2:15 on the 15 mile challenge. 

On to our Juniors for the weekend and there was someone great representation as many of our juniors represented Nottinghamshire in the East Midlands Sports Hall Regional Match. Eliza de Villars represented in the U11G whilst Isaac Beresford and George North were in the U11B. Three girls in the U13G with Heidi Marks, Summer Johnson and Emilia Jonczyk whilst Henry marks made the U13B. Finally, in the U15G we had Ceryn Greaves and Freddie Marks & Travis Revell in the U15B. Isaac Beresford also collected his Male overall athlete of the year award for Notts Boys after a great season. Isaac also took part in the ISA National XC and was joined by Theo Bezoari-Oldfield with a brilliant 4th place finish. 

Finishing the report with more volunteering with Mark Hazlehurst busy volunteering at The Glasgow Games but finding enough time between competitions for some great viewing including a couple of Great Britain Golds!

 

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