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PB's smashed at Shepperdine Half and Full Marathon.

Cameron Pay reports...

In March last year, 5 members of the Tewkesbury Running Club completed the Fission 20/20 around Berkeley power station. Little did they know it would be the last 'proper' race for 12 months due to the pandemic.

6 weeks ago entries were opened for this year's rebranded event now offering the marathon and half marathon distances. With a 550 capacity over the 2 distances, it quickly sold out. Expertly organised by RogueRuns the event was fully compliant with current Covid regulations. The weather seemed perfect for running and with the registration table and all the finish line goodies also outside, it felt very safe.

Each runner had to predict their race pace and set off on a time trial basis 10 seconds apart with the first runners setting off at 9am and the last at 10am. This eliminated a crowded start and reduced overtaking on the course and worked very well.

Our sole entry for the full marathon was Chris Nicholls. His running times this year have been reducing quicker than his waistline and Chris put in another superb run. 2 years ago Chris would have been hoping for a 6 hour finish time and it's a sign of his current fitness that a sub 4 hour run was within his sights. The chilling wind blowing in off the River Severn coupled with the blazing sun did our fair-skinned friend no favours but he still smashed 5 minutes from his previous best time and clocked in with a new PB of 4:11:07 (hrs:mins:secs). Bravo Sir. Along with a Running top and medal, Chris is now sporting a glow that we are hoping is sunburn and nothing to do with running around a Nuclear power station for 4 hours!

5 members took on the half marathon distance. Jay Russell, Emma Haworth-Smith, Claire Bickford, Dean Hodges and Cameron Pay.

Jay is in strong form and cruised across the finish line in 1:34:23. Claire and Dean have been putting in the miles during the lockdowns and they both came into the run in fine form. They ran together for the first 10 miles until Claire decided she had had enough of Dean's pacing and instructed him to push off (or words to that effect). Dean then romped home in 1:58:23 - knocking 7 minutes off his old PB in only his 2nd run at the distance. Fantastic. Claire was not far behind him and came in still smiling at 2:01:34 beating her previous PB by 8 1/2 minutes. Incredible.

Emma and Cam aiming for a time of 2 hours 11 minutes (10-minute miles) set off way too quick, posting near PB times at 5k and 10k before settling into some much-needed 10-minute miles before slowing down (not by choice) over the last 3 miles to come in at 2 hours 10 minutes 57 seconds - official 2:10:53 for Cam, 2:11:01 for Emma. On the face of it, perfect pacing. In reality, a harsh lesson learnt... leave the 5k and 10k Pb's for 5k and 10k races!! Huge congratulations to Emma smashing 6 minutes off her previous PB and a just reward for all of the effort she has been putting into her training runs.

Overall 4 PB's smashed and 5 very happy runners.

Credit to RogueRuns and the marshalls for putting on such a successful event in these uncertain times. 10/10


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