On the January 24, three Ely Runners, John Manlow, Miranda Reynolds and Ian Blatchford took part in the Folksworth 15, a 2 lap race of 15 miles. This race, along with the Stamford 30K and the 20 mile races at Tarpley and Wymondham are widely used by local runners as marathon preparation for VLM in April.
John used the race to kick off his VLM campaign – after a couple of months of too much cycling and weight training and not enough running. His day started well when he managed to park in one of the closer car parks – hooray! but on a muddy verge! – boo!
John started the race with no expectations due to having only been back to running for about a month (a calf strain put paid to the Nene Valley 10 before xmas). He had completed a couple of 16-18 milers in training, so was at least confident of getting round provided the calf held up.
Weather was very mild and quite windy compared with last years still/cold conditions – but at least it didn’t rain – although the course was a bit muddy in places due to farm traffic.
The race started off OK and John felt pretty good for lap one – considering the 25-30 mile a week regime – but was a bit worried about lap 2. Lap 2 was scarily OK – likely down to the weight training and cycling toughening his legs. It was not as fast as he would have been in the past but he didn’t feel in trouble at any point which was result. Pacing was pretty even all the way and he even managed the down hill with a tail wind mile 14 in 5:34 – shame some of the uphill head wind miles were a minute slower!
John managed a strong finish and was only 10 seconds off the guy in front, who was slowing, and won the v45. In hindsight, had he realised earlier maybe he could have made more of a fight of it.
Overall John was very pleased with the result, and now has a month to convince his body that it can manage 20 flat out at Tarpley. (Once he ges through the cycling club’s Hardriders TT – hope it is dry and not to cold!)
There was no cake but there were some free yoghurt/granola bars at the finish which were quite nice!
There were 412 finishers and course record holder Aaron Scott won in 1:20:37 – miles outside his course record though and Gill Fullen of Bedford Harriers won the ladies in 1:36:27 Official Results: 1st Aaron Scott 1:20:37, 13th John Manlow 1:32:31 , 22nd Gill Fullen 1:36:27 (1st female), 133rd Miranda Reynolds 1:55:12, 154th Ian Blatchford 1:57:28.