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Woodland 5 On the day entries available.

The first race was a huge success (full results here) and we have plenty of spaces for the next two events.

The dates  are:  26th June and  31st July.

entry form here (pdf or doc)

Race reports
Woodland 5 Race Report

July 2012 Woodland 5 Race Report

A full report is coming soon, but for now enjoy these photos.

Last Updated on Monday, 30 July 2012 10:24
London Marathon 2012 Race Report

Virgin London Marathon 2012 Race Report

Alice Albrow won the club place in the 2012 London Marathon, and has written the following excellent article for the site.


I first joined a running club in 2003, when I ran with Ranelagh Harriers in West London, and since then I have always hoped to run the London Marathon. In my mid twenties I didn’t feel that I was up to it and always gave the excuse that ‘I needed a few more years training in my legs!’

In 2006, when I had been running with Finchcoasters for a year or so, all of my dreams were crushed when I was diagnosed with a deep vein thrombosis in my left iliac and femoral vein. Running was completely off the cards; I could hardly walk let alone consider running a marathon.

I am a very strong willed character and whilst my life changed dramatically I was not going to let my blood clot hold me back. I very gradually began to walk/jog, then jog and ultimately run.

By 2008 I felt it was time for a challenge and I entered Beachy Head marathon. Many people thought I was a little loopy as Beachy head is so hilly; the thing is the hills mean that many people walk at times and if many people were walking this meant I could walk, when my leg began to hurt, without feeling that I wasn’t being tough enough or anyone asking if I was ok (something that I had been struggling with). I completed the course in 05:36.

Congratulations to the Coasters who attended the Love Life Love Running weekend

A full report will follow with pictures but just a quick congratluations to all those who took part in the various races.

We had 36 Coasters take part in the Charity mile - well done to all the kids who ran/walked it.

In the 10k on the  Saturday we had some great times on a very tough course with Carol Yarrow winning first female home and 13th overall.


On the Sunday 6 hour relay we entered several teams. Andy Surplice put in an amazing effort to take on the full 6 hours solo, completing 8 7km laps. This is a hilly course and the heat of the day didn't help so this was an amazing achievement.

Our team of 2 Paul and Sarah Evans came second in the mixed category completing 5 laps each.

OUr team of 4: Carol Yarrow, Becky Wood, Andy Elliott and Chirs Aitkin won the mixed 4s category compeltign 3 laps each.

We then had two teams of 6 who battled it out throughout the 6 hours for the top prize. It all came down to the last runners with only 2 minutes between the two teams at the end - a spectacluar effort, particularly as the teams were only 1 second apart at half-way. The winning team was Lousie Mander, Rachel and Rodger Duckworth, Simon Crute, Paul Jenkins and Claire Elliott. The second placed team were Andy Yarrow, Phil Surplice, Josh Suplice, Nathy Feely, Claire Foster and Steve Wood.

The weekend isn't jsut about the races as its very family oriented with lots for the kids to do. The kids also seemed to get on well with one another which was very helpful! There was plenty of beer and wine floating around and a large event shelter for us to congregate in to aovid the rain on the Friday evening.

The UK Challenge 2011

Once again this annual competition for Business Teams came around, this time based in Minehead, Somerset and using the hills of Exmoor to test the 85 teams taking part. This is a 4 day event starting on the Wednesday evening and finishing on Saturday afternoon with teams facing running, orienteering, mountain biking, canoeing, problem solving and other team working exercises to test them across 8 stages.

We’d grown the reputation of our AWE team steadily over the last few years by winning the event in 2007 and then second place for the last two years so other teams were aware of what we could do. So there was some expectation on us for the event, not least from ourselves who wanted to win it rather than collect another silver medal!

The weather for the four days was pretty horrible for June with high winds and heavy rain – not nice for adventure racing, but you just have to get on with it!

We started on the Wednesday night with a couple of hours running around very sharp hills playing Boggle. Essentially visiting checkpoints to collect the letters and spell the words. After some good words and one small mistake we were in first place. Onto the next morning and we had a 5 hour bike stage ahead of us with a very complex strategy that took several hours to plot out the night before.  Weather conditions were pretty horrendous out on the Crossocks. The stage was based on the film Inception and is far too complex to explain here.  The planning time was well spent as we again won the stage, extending our lead.  Heading into the evening we had a build stage ahead of us. Normally its just about trying to survive these as we set about building a device capable of picking up 4 wooden blocks and placing them in a stack.  We only came second on this stage, though but still kept our overall lead.

When Friday dawned the weather was still pretty terrible and we were told that our planned canoe stages were cancelled. This was pretty disappointing as canoeing was one of our strengths. Fortunately the organisers sorted out some back up stages, the first of which was a championship of losing draughts. Basically you play draughts as normal but the aim is to lose every game. This is actually harder than it sounds as if one of your pieces is in a position to take another then you have no choice but to take it. As teams were pitted against those teams closest to them in the competition and with 20 minutes bonus available per game, winning games was important to retaining the lead. We knew the basic strategy to this and managed to get through this normally high stress event by winning 3 out of 5 games.  

The organiers then converted a canoe stage into a run stage but as we knew we had running the next day we backed off a bit on the strategy, thinking this would be a hard stage. As it turned out we could have cleared the stage, as other teams did and we dropped to second place by 6 minutes as we failed to collect some of the big bonuses.

This may or not have been a bad thing as Saturday dawned with more torrential rain as we headed to the highest point on Exmoor.  Another complex strategy stage (and another late night working through the strategy for it) but we nailed it despite the tough hills making it too difficult for us to achieve our full plan. However, those teams who’d beat us the previous day suffered badly and dropped back down again, allowing us to regain our lead.

Heading into the final stage which was a straight race involving running, then biking up a big hill before running back down and across the sand to the finish. Of course it was never going to be that simple as we had to solve puzzles at regular intervals along the route. We pushed hard up the hill and solved the puzzles pretty quickly putting us several minutes ahead of the other teams and enabling us to come in first. As this was the stage that gets shown on Channel 4 we were pleased to do so well in it. As we crossed the finish line it was good to have our overall win confirmed.

The UK Challenge is an excellent event and if you get the opportunity to take part then grab it as you’ll find its one of the most exhilarating events you can take part in.

Congratluations to all those who ran the Thames Path yesterday

Congratulations to those who ran the Thames Valley Path run. 14 Coasters took part with 7 completing the full 33 miles (Becky Wood, Carol Yarrow, Rachel Morley, Paul Jenkins, Pete Humphreys, Paul Evans and Sam the dog). Well done to everyone else, with all runners completing the 21 miles up until lunch. Thanks very much to John Henessey who drove the bus and Christina Ansell who navigated and both provided support at the various stops. The support bus helped those who needed a short rest before heading back out onto the path. The weather was kind to us with mostly cloudy conditions with the sun occasionally breaking through but fortunately it didn't get too hot. We did suffer from one heavy rain shower which forced us to hide under some trees until the worst of it had gone, but then the sun came out again to dry us out! It was a lovely route to run along, very picturesque which helped keep you going.


Thames path runners

Last Updated on Sunday, 10 July 2011 21:34
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