A TRIO of Harborough AC runners took on a mountainous task in the shape of the 30th Snowdonia Marathon.
Traversing a peak referred to as probably the busiest mountain in Britain by the Llanberis Mountain Rescue Team, one of the UK’s toughest and most picturesque marathon routes takes racers up some 3,500ft.
For the anniversary edition, a total of 1,458 combative individuals managed to complete the distance – making it also the most successful in its burgeoning history.
In the race last year Harborough’s Yvonne Scarrott took second spot in the FV45 age bracket – a feat she repeated in this year’s version, with a tremendous time of 3hrs 33mins 04secs, seeing her take 174th overall.
That made her the club’s first finisher, and continues her superb run of competitions across all terrains this season.
With success that saw her crowned Female Athlete of the Year at the recent club awards evening, Scarrott has etched her name into the top 100 across all her distances through 2012.
Reflecting on the latest effort, Scarrott said: “This is the second time I’ve run this race, and it’s a fantastic course.
“With a marathon like this, it’s not so much about time, but about appreciating and respecting the route and the climbs.
“But to finish second again is brilliant, and makes the pain well worth it.”
Another of HAC’s more prolific racers – Ady King – will certainly be able to empathise with Scarrott’s words. Well-placed and looking good up to the 20-mile mark, severe cramp set in half way up the principal climb to Bwlch y Groes. However, never one to be deterred, King battled through, finally crossing the line in a respectable time of 3:48:36, for 324th place.
A little under 10 minutes later, Graeme Rolfe continued his love affair with the course.
In his third successive tilt, he completed a hat-trick of finishes with 459th position, and a time of 3:58:24.
A few days earlier, four of the Harborough club’s road runners competed in the 2012 Birmingham BUPA half marathon.
First to take the chequered flag for HAC was Nick Turner-Henke.
Stopping the watch at 1:34:10 in 891st place represented a new personal best by almost six minutes over the distance.
Also recording a PB was Bob Allsopp; with 1:35:55 for 1,087th. Becky Thurston and Natalie Ives concluded the yellow and black representation; both debuting over 13.1.miles.
Thurston placed 7,775th with 2:07:20, while Ives’ 2:29:28 gave her 11,023rd spot in the biggest entry field in the race’s history.
Closer to home, Ray Lack continued his return over the five miles of the inaugural Corby Run. An excellent ninth place was secured, in a time of 42:55.
Away from the roads, the cross-country season is getting into full swing.
And, in the opening fixture of the North Midlands League, it was Harborough’s veteran women who took centre stage.
First-place age category finishes were garnered by Hannah Eveleigh (FV35) and Yvonne Scarrott (FV45), while Karen Brooks was second in the FV50s.
Joined by Nicola James, Lianne Brooks, Lin Farrow and Marise Taylor, the senior team took 16th spot overall, with the veteran team in first.
Meanwhile the veteran men were classified in seventh, thanks to the efforts of Will Clapp (71st), Martin Gore (78th), Graeme Rolfe (167th), Martin Hughes (208th), and Pete Leach (222nd).
Among the juniors, there were top 10 places for Niamh and Mollie Watson at seventh and eighth in the under-13 girls’ race, and Martha Clapp at 10th in the under-15s.