Eyam Half Marathon 2024 Report and Results

Report by: Dennis Johns

Race Date: 19th May 2024

 The sun was out as over 50 Striders (many motivated by the prospect of League and Championship points) hit the famously plagued village of Eyam for the ‘Rat Race’ (possibly also referred to as the Plague Round). 13 miles of hills, some rolling and some brutal: with over 500m of climbing, it’s not messing about and as a first-timer on this course I was anticipating plenty of suffering and not even a tiny chance of a PB.

Rat Trophies!

The village itself is lovely and arrival was really well organised – it’s a relatively small race but plenty of volunteers and a real sense that the whole village is out to support the event. There is always something delightful and reassuring about being in a church hall and so changing/bag drop was a pleasure, as was the amble down to the start line.

From the start, the course goes back through the village and then kicks up almost immediately. Having been warned by multiple veterans that the real savagery comes near the end, I was trying to hold something in reserve so enjoyed any shade that came our way and settled into a nice rhythm, at the kind of pace where you can look around and enjoy the views. The long ridge which comes after the gliding club was particularly good for this and at least the height and open parts meant there was some breeze to take some edge off the increasingly punishing heat.

After going along Eyam Moor, the hills truly came in and, I think as it was for most people, my running was barely above walking pace. Pro tip #1: as you come up Sir William Hill Road, look behind you as a helpful reminder that you’re only going as slowly as everyone else. The sweet sounds of the accordion and guitar duo at the top of the hill were charming, but you’re going to need more motivation than that; it’s a real keep-putting-one-foot-in-front-of-the-other section. Pro tip #2: maybe don’t bother holding anything in reserve, you’re toast anyway (not holding back is next year’s strategy, so I’ll report back on how well that goes).

The fun part does come next: a mile or so of pretty much constant downhill, plenty of it steep, all the way to the finish back in the middle of the village and next to an excellent café. The truly excellent part of the finish, though, was some elite level flapjack being handed out to all finishers which clinched a 10/10 for me on organisation. Another sight at the finish were a few finished Striders including Sian Evans, who already looked relaxed and ready to go again – pretty impressive after, it turned out, winning the women’s race. This was only of a number of great performances from the Strider women as both Josie Hill (F40) and Katie Scott (F60) finished first in their age categories.

So, if you’ve been avoiding this one like the plague or been plagued by doubts about handling the hills – don’t. It’s a cracking little race, equally filled with charm and challenge.

First man was William Strangeway (Lincoln Wellington AC) in 1:15:02 (or chip 1:14:59 – sub-1:15 which probably matters to William!) and first lady was Strider Sian Evans in 1:28:28 (chip 1:28:24).  There were 377 finishers including 52 Striders.

Link to full results here.

Striders’ Results:

Pos Name Chip Time Gun Time M/F Cat Cat Pos
4 Liam Brennan 01:23:04 01:23:07 4th M Sen 1st
8 Sian Evans 01:28:24 01:28:28 1st F Sen
10 Sam Needham 01:29:01 01:29:04 9th M40 3rd
18 Edward Shattock 01:33:23 01:33:30 16th M Sen 6th
21 Dennis Johns 01:34:23 01:34:30 18th M40 8th
27 Richard Carter 01:37:04 01:37:14 24th M40 10th
31 Paul Hargreaves 01:38:21 01:38:27 28th M40 11th
32 Phil Gregory 01:38:33 01:38:38 29th M40 12th
33 Darren Barnett 01:38:36 01:38:44 30th M40 13th
34 Harry Browne 01:39:04 01:39:12 31st M Sen 14th
37 Hannah Shillitoe 01:39:44 01:39:54 5th F Sen 2nd
42 Luke Clay 01:40:33 01:40:38 36th M Sen 16th
51 Edward Brooks 01:41:55 01:42:13 43rd M Sen 20th
55 Emily Green 01:42:35 01:42:43 10th F Sen 6th
67 Ellen Broad 01:44:30 01:44:39 12th F Sen 7th
72 Chris Boland 01:45:09 01:45:34 59th M40 24th
78 Robert Hale 01:46:33 01:46:47 63rd M Sen 31st
85 Jacqui Herring 01:47:31 01:47:40 17th F50 3rd
88 Ian Black 01:47:48 01:48:22 71st M50 8th
93 Josie Hill 01:48:50 01:49:17 20th F40 1st
103 Kathryn Liddiard 01:51:06 01:51:15 21st F Sen 14th
109 Lee Blackburn 01:51:16 01:51:43 87th M50 14th
119 Sam Ainscough 01:52:58 01:53:15 97th M Sen 45th
120 Rachel Hardy 01:53:13 01:53:20 23rd F Sen 15th
132 Katrina Gillett 01:55:10 01:55:27 25th F Sen 16th
138 Ben Heller 01:56:11 01:56:34 111th M60 2nd
162 Andy Hinchliffe 01:58:56 01:59:06 130th M60 3rd
164 Chris Froud 01:59:04 01:59:30 132nd M40 46th
165 Cara Hanson 01:59:22 01:59:49 33rd F40 4th
166 Martin Lowe 01:59:33 01:59:59 133rd M40 47th
171 Chris Walker 02:00:28 02:00:46 136th M40 48th
173 Kate Scott 02:00:51 02:01:11 36th F60 1st
180 Kevin Wong 02:02:07 02:02:42 142nd M40 51st
203 John Rawlinson 02:05:11 02:05:33 158th M50 35th
206 Mark Warriner 02:05:15 02:05:51 161st M40 58th
207 Tara Hilton 02:05:36 02:06:04 46th F50 10th
208 John Liddle 02:05:30 02:06:08 162nd M50 36th
209 Karen Clark 02:05:37 02:06:11 47th F60 3rd
212 Martin Downham 02:06:15 02:06:25 165th M60 6th
215 Lindsey Banks 02:06:11 02:06:47 48th F40 9th
231 Ryan Talley 02:08:22 02:08:48 175th M50 41st
233 Catherine McKeown 02:08:21 02:08:56 57th F50 12th
250 Kevin Haighton 02:11:42 02:11:56 188th M60 10th
252 Dean Harding 02:11:41 02:12:00 189th M40 62nd
256 Jo Gleig 02:12:10 02:12:42 65th F60 5th
258 Ben Baxendale 02:13:14 02:13:23 193rd M40 64th
271 Lucy Mottram 02:14:18 02:14:49 67th F40 17th
322 Ruth Thomas 02:24:06 02:24:38 91st F40 26th
323 Ricky Kwok 02:24:37 02:24:58 232nd M50 61st
344 Laura Fletcher 02:32:26 02:33:01 104th F40 30th
348 Ian Blackburn 02:32:57 02:33:45 241st M60 20th
374 Hannah Wright 03:01:11 03:01:41 123rd F Sen 45th


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