Declared the patron saint of England in 1327 by King Edward III, St George was the embodiment of his vision for his Kingdom. Strong, fearless…. England’s hero.
That’s exactly what every runner had to be on this beast of a race on Sunday.
165 real life heroes lined up under the golden arch at St. George’s School. 10.30 came and club legend Dave Cass blasted the hooter to get them going on their 10 mile journies, (some for the first time ever) Unforgiving undulation faced each one of them for the next hour or 2 as the course unfolded.
An uphill start into Watergate Road saw them get into their stride before they embarked upon the first steep climb…. Nunnery Lane.
The climb took them past The Priory and onward toward their first vista of the race with a panoramic view of Carisbrooke Castle.
The sun was warm but thankfully not as fierce as last weeks record July temperatures as the runners made their way along the course to Gatcombe. Supporters, friends and family popping up along the route to cheer.
But then the real business began as the runners arrived in sunny Chillerton. All they had to do way get to the top of this beastly dragon of a hill (all 2 miles of it)
At Berry Lane the torturous hill had been conquered by all. The dragon had been slayed. The drinks at the top were lapped up, (as was the view). the runners then descended back toward Gatcombe.
As they descended back to Gatcombe, the worst of the ascents behind them, they enjoyed a lengthy downhill. As they turned off at Newcroft and past the final drink station, the last 3 miles dragged on as the relentless rollercoaster of ups and downs drained their tired legs.
This year’s overall winner was Gary Marshal in a very nippy 58.46, breaking the previous course record by 8 seconds. Paul Cooke from South Molton Strugglers snuck in under an hour to take 2nd place in 59.44. 3rd place went to Dave Hunt of Ryde Harriers in 1.01.23
In the ladies race, it was last minute entry Laura Brackley that emerged victorious in 1.07.16. She also set a new course record, taking off 17 seconds the previous time. Rosanna Sexton continued her great form to take 2nd place in 1.09.25. Jodie Wilmott came home 5 minutes later in 1.14.26 to take 3rd.
In the Veteran Catagories it was Stu Backhouse, Steve Rumsey, Paul Muffett and Peter Young that took the top spots. For the ladies it was Laura Brackley, Karen Phillips, Nina French and Cherry Owens that ran themselves into the pole positions.
Full results can be found here https://isleofwightroadrunners.net/?page_id=5988
The rest of the field came in one by one and two by two, hot, tired and exhausted but with a huge sense of achievement that only comes from triumphing over adversity. Their efforts were rewarded with the first half of a beautiful custom medal designed by the very talented IWRR David Blake, presented proudly by Dave’s wife and daughters.
All the winners were presented with their trophies and the cake stall was cleared out raising £140 for the School. Talk already turning to when 2020s race would be available so they could ensure their second half of the medal would make it into their collection.
165 Heroes … every single one of them.
Stu Backhouse – 1.04.40
Ross Wilkes – 1.07.13
Steve Rumsey – 1.07.43
Paul Muffett – 1.08.31
Rosanna Sexton – 1.09.25
David Blake – 1.10.42
Sean Williams – 1.11.20
Scott Bradley – 1.11.42
Matt Fletcher – 1.11.44
Jamie Brenchley – 1.12.10
Jodie Wilmott – 1.14.26
Peter Sexton – 1.17.21
Tim Keyte – 1.17.37
Noel Finn – 1.19.32
Simon Weeks – 1.20.29
Simon Paul – 1.21.26
Kevin Rann – 1.22.02
Richard Clark – 1.25.07
George Butler – 1.32.38
Chani Jones – 1.34.44
Karen Phillips – 1.35.05
Kim Hulacka – 1.36.19
Charlotte Dollery – 1.41.54
Sue Hunter – 1.42.27
Judy McCabe – 1.43.54
Claire Harvey – 1.44.10
Fiona Atwood – 1.45.57
Emma Muffett – 1.46.42
Louise Morris – 1.49.09
Sarah Sharp- 1.49.28
Bridget Keyte – 1.49.29
Fay Tosdevin – 1.49.51
Eloise Radestock – 1.55.14
Debbie Radestock – 1.55.45
Jo Randall – 1.57.48
Gill Shaw – 2.06.50
Penny Downer – 2.07.30
Brian Harris – 2.08.27
2nd – Stu Backhouse, Ross Wilkes, Steve Rumsey
3rd – Paul Muffett, David Blake, Sean Williams
1st – Rosanna Sexton, Jodie Wilmott, Chani Jones
3rd – Karen Phillips, Kim Hulacka, Charlotte Dollery
Thanks to all the volunteers, marshalls, timekeepers, cyclists and everyone that gave up their time to make this event happen.