We are proud to see one of our newer members feature on the front page of Broxtowe Matters this Autumn. Zoe is a fantastic runner and one inspirational lady indeed. Read more here.
Zoe is also taking part in a Spin-a-thon fundraising for Children in Need at Kimberley Leisure Centre on 15th November. She'll be doing the full 14 hours - if you want to join her and help raise money, please sign up at the leisure centre or pop along and donate!
The club has enjoyed a fantastic summer season of racing, with record numbers of members taking part. Michael O'Brien took overall victory in the Men's V70+ category, Kev Rogers took 3rd overall in the Men's 65 category. Our Ladies also enjoyed great success with Kerstine Herbert taking 3rd overall in the Ladies V40 category and Sue Mclouglin taking 3rd overall in the ladies V65 category
We also had a number of runners record top 10 overall finishes in the various age categories. A massive well done to all involved in what has been a wonderful season's racing
Most of the race dates for the upcoming Cross Country season are now confirmed and on our calendar. Please have a look and get your race plans sorted! As soon as the County and National Championship dates are published, We will let you all know. Just remember, the North Mids League as well as the regional and national championship races all require affiliation to the EA.
This weekend sees our very own Kerstine take on the Ring o' Fire coastal ultra marathon in Angelsey. The race is a 135 mile journey over three days around the island, with an incredible 90% of it being in areas of outstanding natural beauty.
Kerstine is an experienced ultra marathoner and we wish her all the best for this, one of her biggest challenges. If you want to support her, please check out the link to the tracker here and if you want to go a bit further, please check out her sponsorship page, as Kerstine has been avidly raising money for the Stroke Association, you can read her story and support her cause here.
Yes you lucky people! it's nearly the time of year to get all muddy in the name of fun and hearty competition. Below are some key dates for your diaries. If you are new to the club or haven't run cross before, have no fear! It's great fun and an ideal way to to keep sharp and fit over the winter. Trail shoes are highly recommended, although a pair of Spikes are the ideal footwear, especially as the Winter takes hold.
13/10/19 Shipley Park
These dates are to be confirmed, and there may be an additional fixture in December.
North Mids league
12/10/19 Markeaton Park
9/11/19 West Glebe Park, Corby
7/12/19 Shipley Park
11/01/20 Wollaton Park
Athletes require EA affiliation for this League.
Other events to consider on the Winter calender are:
The BMAF National x/c relays held at West Park, Long Eaton on the 26/10/19 (
The National x/c relays at Berry Hill, Mansfield on the 2/11/19
The County x/c Championships, venue to be confirmed and the event usually takes place the first weekend of the new year.
The English National x/c Championships. This is the big one and one of the best running events you will ever take part in. The event is on home soil this time as it takes place at Wollaton Park, the date will be confirmed in November
The events above also require EA affiliation, as they are Championship events.
Here's to Muddy Fun!
As the Summer League drew to a close this week, we are pleased to be able to share in the success of two of our members in the Winter Booths Decorators' Cross Country league 2018/19.
Kerstine (left) succeeded in achieving 3rd place in the VL40 category and Karen (right) earned an outstanding 2nd place in the VL55 category. Both won prizes courtesy of Derby Runner - well earned!
The XC leagues starts in October time - if you've never tried it but always wondered, ask any of the committee and we'll gladly give you some tips on trail shoes, spike options and what to expect. They are a tough set of races, but made all the more interesting by the great venues and "interesting" terrain.
On the 20th July, KADS, along with their friends and family took over the 120th Shipley Country Parkrun and helped 176 parkrunners cross the finish line. Read more on our blog.
By Paul Nicholls
The journey up to Manchester on Saturday afternoon was pretty uneventful. Well it was for us, not so for Freddie Burns of Bath in the European Cup match against Tolouse, that will teach him to celebrate before he has scored. Talking of rugby, we had booked into the Premier Inn at Old Trafford, very handy for the race. Even handier it turned out, for the Rugby League Cup Final between Wigan and Warrington. The hotel bar was heaving with "proper" Northerners, although I didn't actually see any clogs or whippets. We did, however, see a group of butchers chasing a pig. Seems fancy dress isn't just for the cricket.
Last minute kit check, pin on race numbers, lay out kit for the "apparently" traditional post on Facebook.
It was then a traditional early night before race day. Following tradition, Sarah was too nervous to sleep much.
Race day dawned wet. Very wet! Luckily we had come prepared. The start was only a couple of minutes stroll from the hotel, but we set off early to allow Sarah to soak up the pre-race buzz. All she managed to soak up though was gallons of Manchester's finest rain.
We found our start pen (G), right outside the Hotel Football. I swear you could actually see our hotel room from where we stood waiting patiently in the rain. The pen filled up, 9am came and went. We shuffled forward a few times, but no sign of the start. It was cold. Sarah was getting more nervous by the minute, we really wanted to just crack on with it. After what seemed like hours, we finally approached the start line. Off with the bin liners and fleeces. The race clock read 9.33 as we crossed the line, still wearing our matching red "Santa's little helpers" hats.
The first mile was typical of a big city race, people sprinting past on both sides, someone walking after half a mile, nervous chatter, running far too fast! We made a conscious effort to slow it down, but the mile 2 marker came up too quick as well. By now we had plenty of room to run in, space to find our own rhythm. I was really surprised how many people were walking, I know we had set a very conservative target, but we intended to try and run it all.
Back past the start at 3 miles, discarding the hats in flamboyant style (well, me anyway). We settled into a nice steady slosh up the road to Salford. The crowds were very vocal, a lot sparser than I remember from the marathon, but it was properly chucking it down. Water stations on route dispensed bottles, and also provided bins a bit further down the road with big targets on. I missed every single one!
As we approached the M60 bridge, we started to see the fast runners heading for home on the opposite carriage way. We managed to see Steve Haskard just in front of the 1:30 pacer and I bellowed encouragement. Lots of encouragement was coming our way from the faster runners, but once we passed the Majestic wine shop in Sale, the route took us through a very sparsely supported stretch. For the first time it started to seem like hard work. At 7 miles the puddles seemed more numerous and deeper. Sarah went quiet.
A left turn, followed a couple of hundred yard later by another, meant we had turned for home. The crowds started to re-appear, the mood was lifted. During our longer training runs, Sarah had started to run/walk at around 8 miles, but no such nonsense on race day. She ploughed relentlessly on, slightly slower, slightly more sweary, but on and on. We climbed up the cemetery hill at Sale, with the P.A guy giving us a big shout out at the top. Because I was running just in front of her, and had ny name on my vest, I was getting loads of shouts of "come on Paul". Sarah wasn't getting anything like the same, so every time someone shouted my name, I started running backwards and pointing at the "Sarah's Pacemaker" sign on my back. It worked a treat, suddenly Sarah was the centre of attention, and rightly so.
Mile 10 came and went, and we threw in a little walk break to eat jelly babies. I was expecting it to be hard to get her running again, but she took the initiative and we ran back onto the main drag and could almost smell the finish. Under the M60 bridge, we saw lots of blue lights as police and an ambulance tended to a fallen runner. We walked a little bit more after the 11 mile marker, as Sarah put it "so I have something left to run at the end". We walked hand in hand, something picked up on by the marshalls, who were amazing, supportive and witty all the way round.
We started to run again well before the 12 mile marker, and could soon actually see the finish line in the distance. Sarah kept telling me to slow down, which when we checked the Garmins after the race, was a very accurate assessment, the 13th mile split was the only one in the whole race that was anywhere near target pace! Past the first rank of photographers, more backwards running for me, into the finishing straight. We ran hand in hand for a while, before I sling-shotted Sarah towards the line, I completed a couple of heel clicks and a bit more backwards running for the cameras. We crossed the line in 3:05:55, 10 minutes ahead of our target time. She'd only gone and done it!
A shivery walk back to the hotel, beaming smiles and achey legs. A hot shower and into the bar for Guinness. Sarah saved the biggest surprise until the second pint..... "I enjoyed that, wouldn't mind doing another one"
So Sarah's road to Manchester ended with a stonking race. Beating her target time by 10 minutes and actually enjoying the experience. Well done Sarah, you were amazing, but then again, I did tell you that you would be!
By Claire Minoprio
On Friday 22nd September I packed up my car with camping equipment full of trepidation and excitement for the weekend ahead but at that point I had no idea I was about to enjoy my best running experience to date. I was going to be part of a team of eight participating in Equinox 24 a twenty-four hour race comprising of 10km laps held in the grounds of Belvoir castle, Leicestershire.
It had all started almost a year earlier when I’d been inspired by tales of people pushing their limits and camaraderie and, if I’m honest, a weekend away with beer and food. Our team was made up of a collection of runners from Notts Women Runners- Selston Superstars, Kimberley and District Striders and other friends and family members. We were all Equinox virgins with variety of running experiences and all with different running goals. A vague plan had been developed prior to the weekend as to how many laps’ people were hoping for and when we would run but as the weather forecast began to filter through it soon became apparent that we would need to be flexible.
Communication from the race organisers had been excellent there was an Equinox 24 Facebook group which proved invaluable at answering questions, giving tips for newbies and featured regular Facebook live updates, there was a website, regular email updates and about a week before the event an App was launched which gave all the information you were likely to need about the event, exhibitors, links to social media and once the event had started a live results feed.
Camping at the event was free you could bring caravans, campers or tents and there was the option to hire glamping tents to accommodate the team. The site opened for campers at Noon on the Friday but as a result of the windy weather pitching tents was tricky, but all the runners and supporters worked together to help each other pitch. Already there was a real sense of community and with only a few broken tent poles between us we were soon ready to register.
There was a wide variety of tasty food stalls many of which were open throughout the Saturday night so that runners could refuel. The food was good quality, reasonably priced and all diets were catered for so whilst we had brought food to cook ourselves there was no need which was a bit of a blessing. There was also a bar bus open throughout the weekend! There was a good variety of exhibitors on site and all very willing to help or offer advice. Although I could have done with someone selling wellies!
On the Friday night there was a Beer run which involved running a lap of the camping field, approximately 1km after having a drink from the bar. There had been much discussion about whether or not to participate in this within our team however when the time came it was cold, wet and miserable so we elected to stay where we were and play games.
It became apparent on Saturday morning that myself and another team member weren’t very well. I was pretty gutted as I’d been hoping for four laps but only one lap had to be completed by each team member to qualify. I reluctantly dipped out of my first lap in the hope that by the time my second lap came round I would feel a little better. My fellow team members were really supportive and happy to be flexible there was no pressure for anyone to run especially as there didn’t need to be a team member on the course at all times. Fortunately I did pick up in time for my later lap and went on to complete three laps in total.
There were lots of children on site and there was a kids fun run at 11:00 on the Saturday which was a 1km lap of the camping field sponsored by Virtual Runner. There were medals for all children entered and trophies for the winners.
There was also a daytime 10km that started at Noon with the 24hr run and a night time 10km which started at 20:00 on the Saturday. There were lots of people who had elected to do the 10km race and spend the rest of the weekend supporting friends, family or other club members.
The course itself was a mainly trail; it started in the camping field and you were quickly led out of the field along a short tarmacked path into a farmers field were you ran the perimeter for approximately 1.5km, this was a tricky part of the course. While the earlier runners found it very uneven under foot and difficult to judge their foot placement, for the later laps the ground was less rutted but very muddy. The course then followed another tarmac path back towards the camping field for approximately another 1.5km, turning right before and heading down towards a bridge over the lake at the bottom of the camping field. Here you started a steady climb (about 50m elevation) past the second marshall point up to the water station just after 5km. From here there was the most amazing view over to the castle and down on to the campsite. I was fortunate enough to get the dusk lap and watching the sun setting behind the castle was fabulous. This was followed by a sharp grassy descent which was also quite hard to negotiate due to the terrain but was great fun. You were then faced with the hill referred to as, amongst other things, “That Hill”. This was a virtually vertical grassy incline with an elevation of 40m which by the end of the 24hrs was more like a mud slide. New for this year’s event was the king and queen of the mountain award for the fastest male and female up the hill in the various categories. Timing strips had been placed at the bottom and top of the hill and prizes were awarded for the winners. Once at the top of that hill there was a lovely meandering grassy descent back to the bridge and along the tarmac path to the camping field. The final kilometre was through the camping field where clubs and teams were cheering people in and offering encouragement, many had music and signs and kids were out with Haribo. There was a presence in the camping field throughout the night with supporters sat around fires and even at 03:00 were offering words of encouragement.
In order to coordinate the handovers we had a rough idea of individual pace and there was a strong team presence around the start line during the day. Throughout the night we used a messenger group to communicate handovers and look out for each other whilst out on the course many teams had supporters and runners taking turns to stay up and coordinate the handovers.
The nature of the course meant that there were lots of points where the runners passed each other going in opposite directions. The support and encouragement for one another at these points was great and I had quite a few shouts of “Go Kimberley”. There were three marshall points that were continually manned throughout the 24 hours. The enthusiasm of the marshalls was infectious and very impressive given the inclement temperatures. There was an ongoing party throughout the event at the drinks station with water, isotonic drinks and a variety of sweets available. Lots of people also had supporters that would arrive for a few hours at various points throughout the weekend to bring supplies and encouragement.
The course was decorated with glow sticks come dusk and the use of a head torch was compulsory after 19:00. Running at night was wonderfully liberating and seeing all the head torches bobbing along in the darkness was magical.
One of the things I most appreciated was that when you were out on the course no one knew if it was your first lap or tenth lap and I felt that this freed me of any sense of pressure. There was no pressure from fellow team members either, it was accepted that we were all pushing our individual limits and we worked together to support one another to do that. We had a team member who did one lap and others who completed 2, 3, 4 and 5 laps some producing very impressive times even in later laps.
On a more basic level the portaloos were regularly cleaned and topped up with toilet paper although there could perhaps have been a few more. The showers were really warm and effective and the queues weren’t too long.
Now I love a relay and I think the reason for that is the team work but prior to the event I hadn’t even thought of it as a relay race. I had no idea how much I would enjoy it and how much of a sense of community there would be at the event with all the participants and supporters working together not just your team mates. It was an amazing experience and an absolute privilege to be part of such and enthusiastic, supportive and inclusive team. Being our first time we were pretty relaxed about the entire experience but still came a respectable 35th out of 101 teams and had a riot along the way.
Now, entries for 2019 open TODAY (Mon 1/10/18) and we have already filled a small team choosing to raise the bar for next year and aim for 5 laps each.
I would urge anyone who’s tempted to give it a go be it as part of a large team, small team, pair or even solo. When I started running three years ago I never would have dreamt that I would been capable of something like this.