St Valentine’s 30k Race Report by Caroline Brock

Race Date: Sunday 23rd February 2020

Race Report by: Caroline Brock

Storm Dennis meant the Stamford St Valentine’s 30k was postponed by a week; unfortunately meaning some Striders couldn’t make it, or maybe they were fortunate. 3 of us made the trip. James having run it before had convinced himself the hills weren’t really hills and therefore led us into a false sense of security that it wouldn’t be THAT hilly!

Myself and Matt both had words with him after the race. Anyone who has run at Stamford will know it is pretty much up and down the whole way round, you don’t get much flat, but that makes it interesting and a proper test. Lots of quiet country roads and some scenery if you take a moment to look. The weather was still windy which made it harder work still. Wind plus uphill means not moving too fast!

James and Matt both shot off into the distance at the start and I spent the race trying to find someone to shelter behind but often finding myself running alone at the windiest parts, but then most of it was windy. I really cursed James and his ‘the hills aren’t that bad’ at 23km where I had to use everything I had to keep moving.

This is a great race, there is a lot of support out and about on the course, friendly marshalls, multiple water stations (most of my water was taken by the wind but I managed a sip), people offering jelly babies and sausage rolls, obvious km signs with motivational quotes, a top made of recycled material, a medal, water, banana and as many love hearts as you can manage!

My least favourite part was the 300m round the very exposed grass football field to finish, but it wouldn’t stop me going back. I’d had enough of grass and mud at the cross country!!! Next year’s race is on Valentine’s Day and they do couples prizes, if your other half is a runner get booked on when entries open in October!

The race winner was William Strangeway of Lincoln Wellington AC in a time of 1:41:32. First lady home was Samantha Cullen of Eye Community Runners in 40th place and a time of 2:04:12. Full results can be found here and Striders results are given below. Congratulations to Caroline for a top 5 category finish!

Pos Name Category Time
33 James Fulcher MV35 2:00:03
34 Matt Connell MSEN 2:00:39
74 (5) Caroline Brock FV35 2:10:26

The Stamford Striders St Valentine’s 30k is organised, unsurprisingly, by Stamford Striders and is held, also unsurprisingly, on the Sunday closest to Valentine’s Day each year. It is recognised nationally as a tough event, providing a good training run for those planning a spring marathon.

Caroline attempting to take shelter from the wind in the pack

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