Bournville Leafy 10k 2023 Race Report and Results

Race Date: Sunday 1st October 2023 at 10am
Race Report by: Stephen Schubeler

Bournville Harriers annual Leafy 10k race is a two-lap course run around the streets and parks/trails of Bournville in Birmingham.

Entries usually open in August/September and it sells out pretty fast.

Number collection is on the day and is a fairly easy process, bag storage is on the playing fields alongside race HQ.

The race starts with a lap of the Rowheath playing fields, the grass was pretty perfect to run on (as perfect as running on grass can be of course).

You then exit the field and hit the streets of Bournville – running on paths and through some parks. You return to the playing fields and do another half lap of the field before exiting again and continuing the second lap.

Having seen the previous results there was a possibility of sneaking an age category. I was fairly confident, especially given it is a two lap course, it’s always handy to gauge the situation halfway and know where to push on.

So off we went, near the front, set off in probably 3rd, dropping down to about 7th on the grass, no need to push it that early on, plus I don’t tend to set off too quick these days for whatever reason, lack of good warm up perhaps…

The lead runner was developing a good lead from 2nd place early on, maybe the grass zapped some eager runners at the start!

After about a mile I clawed back some of those places, getting into 2nd early on. I kept it simple and the lead runner in sight not knowing the full extent of the course.

There was a nice climb for about half a kilometre which would be testing on the 2nd lap (nothing like the TenTenTen!). However, soon followed was a nice short downhill to recover. 

The parks and trails were fairly straightforward, some grass to navigate, not too muddy, then it was a short stint through a housing estate before a narrow path led up to the playing fields before starting the 2nd lap. It was at this point exiting the park I got ahead of the lead runner, finding myself with 4+km to go in the lead.

So I pushed on, utilised the nice short downhill to gain some time and knowing what was to come I pushed on in the right places.

Plenty of marshalls on course, about 40 or so, well organised, spray painted directions on the paths/trails too.

Heading into the last 1km I passed Clare, telling her politely I was zonked, lack of speed/good training lately to blame, but Sheffield 10k in my legs/lungs certainly helped.

Then onto the last section of grass, half lap of the field, which at this point felt like a full lap, and the finish line never seemed to get closer! Managing a Shearer style salute heading over the line.

So a wooden leaf shaped medal & a goody bag of chocolates/haribo/mini cheddars & water were what it was all about. With a nice little presentation and trophy pickup a bonus.

We then went to Cadbury World and bought more chocolate. Good away day.

First place was me, in 37.06. First Female was Suzie Street-Hall of Tipton Harriers in 46.59

Striders full results:

Position Name Category Time
1 Stephen Schubeler M40-44 00:37:06
247 Claire Kidney F45-49 01:13:04

All the results can be viewed here.


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