As with all British scenarios, one must begin with discussing the weather, reports Shona Cowper. For the Beaconsfield 5 on Easter Monday the 22-strong ESM team had all been anticipating torrential rain, if the double raindrop on the BBC weather app is anything to go by. However, as we all know by now when it comes to British weather, what we’re told is not necessarily what we get.
In fact, it might be safe to say it was a relatively “dry” race that was only undone by the sheer volume of water underfoot. Sophie Pesticcio and Claire King “virtually went for a swim in one puddle” and Louise is sure she was calf-deep in water at one point. Mark Kencroft even said “it was the wettest I’ve done, proper xc”. Annick Hooge’s report of “mud, mud and more mud” pretty much nails it.
However, Steve Morris claims that the only reason he got wet at all is because he was running near me and I went through almost every puddle I encountered. That was just part of my tactics, Steve: distraction by splashing.
A couple of tumbles (almost inevitable on that course!) were had by Simon Turrell and Martin Daoud but no lasting effects were felt, as they both carried on and finished strong. Perhaps just a bit more damp than everyone else!
It seems that damp and waterlogged suits ESM well as they took home four of the shiny trophies on offer. Pete Flewitt was 3rd overall and 1st vet – given the option to take either trophy he opted for 1st vet. I took 2nd female and managed to finish with both shoes on, unlike the woman who came first (christened Cinderella by the organisers when she was reunited with the trainer she lost in the mud). Christine Meek took the prize for V50 females – frankly it’s not a normal day for Christine unless she’s winning a prize somewhere! [Fiona Kennedy adds: We only found out about the fourth trophy after the event. The M50 prize was initially awarded to the wrong person, but Mark Kencroft received it in the post a few weeks later].
It was brilliant fun to be part of such a large group of ESM-ers. Hopefully we can bring this level of teamwork to the rest of the races throughout the year and bring home more of those trophies!
Men: 3 Peter Flewitt (V45) 29:38; 4 Nick Steel 31:08; 14 Mark Kencroft (V50) 32:29; 47 Malcolm Woolsey (V35) 36:07; 49 Steve Morris (V50) 36:08; 85 Keith Freegard (V55) 37:44; 90 Andy Price (V40) 38:11; 98 Martin Daoud (V55) 38:55; 148 Simon Turrell (V50) 41:24; 222 Olov Hansen (V60) 44:34
Women: 2 Shona Cowper 35:33; 10 Sarah Gerrie (V35) 37:17; 26 Christine Meek (V55) 40:50; 72 Barbro Julin (V55) 45:23; 86 Louise Prince (V45) 46:20; 115 Lindsay Donoghue (V45) 48:37; 120 Catherine Gunnewicht (V50) 48:55; 130 Jennifer Jones (V50) 49:51; 141 Sophie Pesticcio (V40) 50:46; 142 Claire King (V40) 50:46; 206 Annick Hooge (V60) 55:15; 321 Sughra Mohammedi (V35) 63:59
Full results on runbritain