Wimborne Athletic Club

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Puddletown Plod – 12 June 2011

Kim Brackley reports from a very wet race.

And it certainly was a puddle town as we ran through some quite long and deep ones en route.

Out of curiosity and having heard it was a lovely scenic route, in a moment of madness, I decided not to stay in doors all nice and warm but to brave the elements and head out down the A35. Needless to say at St Mary’s School all the runners were huddled inside (funny that!) as the rain lashed down outside. With the start time looming they suddenly headed off outside at a jog which was very confusing as I thought they had started the race from the school door! The actual start line was just around the corner from the school entrance and after a few minutes getting acclimatised to the torrential rain we were off.

Luckily enough Wendy was there and we teamed up to run around the single-lapped course together, only a few times parting company, with me going slower down hill. As you may remember the rain didn’t let up and after a while it didn’t really make that much difference because when you are that soaked through (2 layers and a jacket) you can’t get any wetter. The roads were quiet, with runners behind shouting warnings if a car was approaching. The marshals did a marvellous job pointing us in the right direction throughout the course (and someone had thoughtfully sprayed yellow arrows on the roads as well, not sure if that’s legal tho!) and they were also very encouraging, you had to admire their dedication as it must have been quite grim for them just standing there. They had water tables set up as well, although they probably didn’t have to use much water for the plastic cups!

The occasional dilemma was whether to try and tiptoe through the huge puddles (and there was no way round them) or just go for it which we did and judging by the shrieks behind so did the others. Although my trainers were completely sodden they soon drained and didn’t cause any worrying blisters.

The course was undulating in places but not too steep and entirely on tarmac. We passed a few villages and also a lovely old house which a runner next to us informed us was a medieval castle. On a fine day it really would have been a lovely run as the majority of it was through country lanes. I was pleasantly surprised to see the kilometre marker indicating that there was only four kilometres to go. Funnily enough that seemed a really long four kilometres as this last section of the race was mainly up hill and it was the only part of the course which actually double-backed on itself. Thankfully the last hundred yards or so was down hill and then we went into the school gates to the finish line. There were a few hardy souls present just before the last corner shouting out words of encouragement as we splashed past. Apart from the marshals there was no one else around, sensibly they were inside the school hall warming up with tea and coffee and I do believe there were cakes as well. There was no goodie bag but we had T-shirts and chocolates to choose from.

Despite the inclement weather on the day I would definitely do this race again.


WACers results were:

7 – Roy Long – 1:17:15
8 – Richard Swindlehurst – 1:17:20
12 – Jerry Shield – 1:19:18
25 – Andy Olden – 1:27:51
35 – Daryl Davies – 1:28:55
47 – Rich House – 1:30:37
53 – Graham Whiffen – 1:32:18
56 – John Hutchings – 1:33:02
80 – Gerry Hutchings – 1:41:09
87 – Kevin Elliott – 1:42:56
112 – Wendy Kennedy – 1:52:25
113 – Kim Brackley – 1:52:30

There were 148 finishers.


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