Race Date: Sunday 13th July 2019
Race Report by: Sarah Storey
On Friday evening on the 12th July around 6pm I was looking on the Internet and up popped a Its Grim Up North race at Duncombe Park and I made the rather daft decision to enter – I never checked out any other info than the mileage, big mistake!
On the Sunday morning we headed up to Helmsley (what better way to spend your wedding anniversary). We found the park relatively easy enough, I collected my number and checked in and we headed up to the car park and paid our £3.00 parking fee and then headed back down to the check-in ready for the race brief.
At the race brief we were informed it was a 4 boot race (5 being their toughest events) and I suddenly thought maybe I should have read a bit further on first… The course was a 4 lap 6.5 mile loop where you came back to the check in before heading out again (and it was to hoped nobody wanted the loo as they were about half a mile away right at the far end of the carpark).
Off we all set when the whistle blew, there was the 20 milers the marathon runners and the ultras who were doing an extra lap afterwards. We ran down a Tarmac road that led you into the park, over a cattle grid and down the road a little further before turning left along through the village and turning left again towards the walled garden and then onto the trail paths (which I bloody hate). The weather had been kind so the ground was firm and solid underfoot, and all was well till we hit the steps at about 1.8 miles in and you had to make your way down roughly 25 uneven rock steps along a short path and up probably 30 of the same uneven rocky steps before continuing. At around the 2.5 mile mark there was a feed station stocked with water, biscuits and sweets and the most encouraging marshal that spurred you on your way along more trail paths before coming across another lady marshal who was just as encouraging but had no treats! She directed us left again through some beautiful woodland and then up a steep and stoney incline and again at the top of this another lovely lady marshal directing you along towards the carpark and the big glorious house of Duncombe Park. Here we fell upon another marshal who this time directed us right whilst giving out motivational quotes up a very steady incline and then if got a little it better as we hit a downhill section that led to a field with sheep in it. We followed the white poles through a few gates and came across the final marshal who once again was very lovely and directed us left up the final incline and back to the start where we had to repeat the lap 3 more times.
Rosie smith and David Hewitt also did the half marathon on the same day starting a little later on. David finished in 18th place with a great time of 2:12:18, the fastest finisher was David Brown from Beverley AC finishing in 1:47:16. Rosie Smith finished in 38th place with an amazing time of 2:36:58. 46 people managed to finish the half marathon.
The fastest finisher for the marathon was Peter Cork, also from Beverley AC in an amazing 3:46:58. I finished in 11th place with a time of 5:11:21. 23 people managed to finish the marathon.
Full results can be found here. Striders results below: