Weston athletes take on the Burrington Blaster

PUBLISHED: 11:55 06 June 2017

Weston Athletic Club.

Weston Athletic Club.


Seventeen Weston Athletic Club members headed to the hills as they took on the Burrington Blaster.

A hot and humid Thursday evening made for sticky conditions as 17 Weston Athletic Club members took on the Burrington Blaster - a five-mile off-road race from Burrington Combe to the top of Beacon Batch and back again, with 1,000ft of climb along the way.

Chris McMillan remains at the top of his game, and finished second overall on the night with a new course best time of 31.58, a time that most runners would be proud of for a flat five-mile race, let alone a hilly one.

Sian Roberts was first club female to finish in 45.47, and averaging just over a nine-minute mile on that terrain is impressive.

Second and third male finishers were Matt Wheeler in 39.57 and Tony Hogg in 42.58. The female honours went to Helen Diamond in 54.16 and Madeline Cook in 56.39.

Over the weekend, some of the club’s runners went on to compete over much greater distances, with some taking on ultra marathons for the first time.

The Dartmoor Discovery is a 32-mile road race with 2,200ft of climb. Three club members took part, and seasoned marathon runner Kieron Summers excelled at his first attempt at a longer distance.

Kieron finished second overall in 3.54.41. Josh Harris and Simon Lund also ran well to finish in 4.38.26 and 5.17.21 respectively.

Eleven club members ran the 30-mile route of Weston Hospicecare’s Mendip Challenge. Conditions were tough, with heavy rain to contend with on the top of the Mendips and some brutal climbs along the way helping to make up the total ascent of over 4,500ft.

No times are recorded for the event, but first to finish overall was Bryan Morley in around five hours. Simon Andrews finished third overall about 45 minutes later. Kev Hudson and Cheryl Valentine finished soon after, and Shane Connolly and Vanessa Andrews made it back in just under 6.45.

Cameron Cumming would have recorded a much faster time had he not gone wrong so many times which resulted in him covering an extra five miles. Many other club members also walked the 30, 20 and 10-mile distances.

Finally, over on the Isle of White, Michael Reep took on the Needles cross country marathon with almost 3,000ft of climb along the way. Michael ran a strong race to finish seventh overall and first in his age category in 4.05.07.

Weston Athletic Club’s next event is the five-mile Beacon Batch off-road race on June 20. Race HQ is the Burrington Inn in Burrington Combe and the race starts at 7.30pm. Online entries are available at www.westonac.co.uk/beaconbatch

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