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Bideford Half Marathon & Duchy 20

An impressive contingent of 11 ORC’s, 9 men and 2 women competed in the Bideford half marathon on Sunday.

This course is half on road and half on the Tarka Trail, so moderately flat, taking in the magnificent countryside alongside the River Torridge between Bideford and Great Torrington.

It was a bit cold out of the sun, but generally good running weather apart from the stiff cold wind blowing up the river which was particularly noticeable as the runners finished.

There were some good times recorded, with Geoff Hill the first ORC home in 1:22:27 closely followed by Haydon Bond in 1:23:42. They were followed by Andrew Vernon, Tom Pollard and Mike Davies.

Ian Ripper did particularly well, he beat his last time here 3 years ago by 23 seconds, coming home in 1:42:34.

Mike Westland came in next and narrowly missed a PB by 57 seconds. He set this record 5 years ago on this course, but considering he has missed training through injury did well. His time of 1:47:04 does however give him a coveted Diamond award – this is based on the percentage of your run compared to the world record at that distance for your age and sex.

Paul Evison was pleased with his time of 1:54:16 as his training has also been disrupted due to illness and he was followed by Chris Fulford-Brown in 2:07:35.

The two ladies put on a great show, with Kate Wilson completing in an excellent time of 1:56:55 and Jane Richardson coming second in the FV70 category in 2:21:02.

Also on Sunday we saw four ORC’s heading to Cornwall for the Duchy 20 at Redruth, this is a good opportunity for a spring marathon training race.

Conditions were cool and breezy along the course which consists of a large loop followed by a small loop. Headwinds in places and a few climbs on this undulating course make for a good test of winter training progress.

Robert Kelly was the first ORC home in a time of 2:05:11, giving him the brilliant result of second place overall and first male V40.

Chris Turner was next in with a time of 2:09:55, fourth overall and first male U35. Shortly behind him was Andrew Vallance in 2:12:00, sixth overall and third male V40.

Finally, Paul Carter came in thirteenth place in 2:22:17 and first male V55. This was a great result for the men and meant they also came home with the second-place male team prize. Brilliant running by everyone.