PICKERING Running Club’s Jayson Cavill began 2014 with a bang – by smashing the Hardmoors 30 race record.
Five Pickering Running Club members were among a record 133 competitors who made the trip to Ravenscar despite the inclement weather, and all five built on previous marathon and ultra marathon success.
The 30-mile figure-of-eight route comprised disused cinder track railway and muddy Cleveland Way coastal paths, taking runners through beauty spots such as Robin Hood’s Bay and past Whitby Abbey.
Cavill set out with the intention of breaking the record of four hours 21 minutes, believing that, with a personal best marathon time of 3-10, this was achievable.
He more than lived up to expectations, destroying the record by 29 minutes and finishing in 3-52, 15 minutes ahead of his nearest competitor.
Lorraine Laycock also built on last year’s incredible performance in the Hardmoors series.
The ladies’ record for this course was 5-03 and Laycock, finishing in 5-05-36, was tantalisingly close. However, while this would have brought victory last year, the calibre of this year’s field meant she was fifth.
The rest of the ultra series looks promising for Laycock, though, as she knocked almost 30 minutes off her time from last year.
Kim England was the next Pickering member back, in 5-09-23.
After three weeks recovering from injury, England was happy just to finish, after struggling with the piercing rain and wind on the cliff tops.
Bob Horsman completed the team, finishing in 6-33-40. Horsman, who completed his first ultra marathon only a month ago, had been running with a friend who pulled up after 20 miles.
Other Pickering Runners opted to run in the Hardmoors 15 race instead.
Steve Watson was high up in the field, finishing in sixth position and second in category in 2-10-28.
Richard Todd also ran well, enjoying the muddy conditions more than most and finishing in 2-38-02.
The first Pickering lady back was Cath Watson, breezing in, after a break from competing, in 3-02-35.
Sue Slack and Philly Hare smiled their way home, in 3-20-17 and 3-23-27 respectively, giving England a much-needed boost as she passed them on the return leg.
New Hardmoors fans Marion Bets and Hilary Turner completed the squad, finishing in 4-00-30 and 4-10-40 respectively.
PRC runners took to the hills again in the Clay Bank East fell race.
The 5.7-mile event, which incorporates 1,003 feet of climb, takes runners up to Urra Moor trig point before a quick descent to the finish. The wind was again bitterly cold and against runners on the way out.
At last year’s race, Cavill claimed his first victory in an outstanding year.
This year, however, it was not to be after his mammoth win a few days before, as he came in fifth overall in 39 minutes.
Mike Wilson pipped Simon Ridley as second Pickering runner in, clocking 48-07 with Ridley 17 seconds behind.
Ian Farrer showed improvement to finish in 51-10, with Mike Hetherton completing the mens’ team in 54-10.
Club-mates Lynn Humpleby and England played cat and mouse for the whole race, with Humpleby’s fearless descending seeing her edge the battle by two seconds, finishing in 51-38.
The ladies’ first team were completed by Slack and Serena Partridge in 62-19 and 62-27, both finishing strongly despite a navigational error from the former.
Jayne Farrer made a rare outing in a fell race and finished in 63-05. Hare claimed second in category in 65-35, with Sally Brown third in 66.29.
Nicola Wise, enjoying the fells again after a short break, trotted home in 72-01. Bets and Turner completed the ladies’ turn-out, clocking 75-10 and 80-00 respectively.