“A good first 10k for anyone to try, and good for those wanting a PB.” That was Sam’s assessment of the Egdon Easy last Saturday which saw four Bridport Runners coming home with some very fast times and rankings in their individual age groups. Here’s Sam’s race report – a story about tropical weather conditions and high ambitions (see all results here): “The tropical storm clouds were brewing over Wey-biza as Nic (Moorcroft) Cowley, Les (Legend) Hawkins, Claire (Rocket) Wynn and Sam Rose arrived to take on the dauntingly-named ‘Egdon Easy’. But easy for what? The Marshalls? The crowd? The runners? Hmm, we’ll come back to that. The four joined 300 other runners on this balmy (or is it barmy?) early summer evening to run a 10km around Lodmoor. Our noble four felt a touch outnumbered by the massed ranks of about 50 Portland Royal Manor Runners, a huge gaggle from one of the many Lychett blah blah clubs and about 90 Egdon Heath Harriers. Perhaps word had got out about the ‘Easy’ bit as there was also the odd stray runner from Tavistock and Portsmouth… or they might have got lost on their way to Dorchester for the following day’s marathon.
Typically humble, ‘Moorcroft’ Nic was playing down his chances of a good time, hoping for a sub 50 minute (says the man who ran a 32 min 10K in his prime – pah). ‘Legend’ Les was just hoping to maintain his first in age class record, even with a calf grumble, but advised in a hushed voice early on that there was ‘new-blood’ in the m70 class and that he didn’t know the interloper’s pedigree. ‘Rocket’ Wynn was hoping for a sub-50 minute without being sick at the end (all just far too messy), and I was aiming for a good time after my slower-than-hoped-for London marathon.
The conditions were fair to heavy going. The breeze was strong, the humidity was through the roof and the temperature was definitely tropical. The rain and promised thunderstorms were yet to appear. The race manager tried in vain to get everyone’s attention at the start line, but eventually just gave up and blew the whistle, and they were off.
The course is one small loop of the park, then 2 big loops of the nature reserve and back along the sea road. It is all flat – there is perhaps 1-2m of elevation change per loop. The way out on the big loop was into the tropical cyclonic wind (!) but on the way back on the coast road the wind was behind you. There is also a smattering of crowds at a few strategic places, which was nice, and the marshalls were really excellent… oh and it is certainly worth doing the YMCA at the place where they had it on repeat as it got extra cheers.
So, what about the race? Get on with it, I hear you cry? Well, normally I tend not to see any of the any of our other runners during the race, so I pad the story out with irrelevant drivel. This was the same! I snuck in just under 41 mins at 40.59, 15th overall and 5th in my (far too damn populous) age class. Quite pleased with that… bit of a comeback from London. ‘Moorcroft’ Cowley then threw back the years and came in at 44.56, 35th overall and 2nd in his m60 age class. The crowd went wild, to which Nic was, as usual, oblivious. ‘Rocket’ Wynn then screamed in (literally – she wasn’t feeling so good at the time) at 49.09 a PB, 10th female overall, and 5th in her age class. Amazing work Rocket – you’ve beaten the 50 minute curse. And finally, ‘Legend’ Les came in at a 63.44, only 2nd in his age class. Les acknowledged that he has met his match in the age class and will be going round to knee-cap his worthy opponent soon.
So a good event for Bridport Runners. We held our own in a very club-runner focused and competitive field. It was good natured and enjoyable, but was it easy? Well, not for the poor Royal Manor slowbies who came in at 1hr 26… and not when going into the wind, but overall, yes, I’d say this is a good first 10k for anyone to try, and good for those wanting a PB. The tight turns in a few places will lose you a few seconds, and you need to be at the start line as there is no chip timing, but all in all, a good gig, but perhaps should have been called the Egdon Breezy.