The big event of the East Anglian club running season, the Timberwolf Round Norfolk Relay, took place over the weekend.
This 198-mile course is run clockwise around the county in 17 stages varying from 5.49 to 19.68 miles, starting and finishing in King’s Lynn. First stage runners set off from 5.30 am onwards on Saturday, depending on their team’s predicted course time, the theory being that all teams would finish by 10.00am on Sunday.
It is a huge logistical exercise, each runner needing an accompanying cyclist during the day and accompanying vehicle at night, together with transport to and from the start and finish of each stage. There is then marshalling, provided by various Norfolk clubs at each of the changeover points where lashings of cake are available, more particularly at the changeovers marshalled by North Norfolk Beach Runners at Cromer and Mundesley where, at the latter, Sue Simms and the increasingly famous Mundesley Cake Ladies excelled yet again.
The 60 participating teams included some from Greater London, the Home Counties and East Midlands, as well as East Anglia from where NNBR entered two teams.
The fastest time, 20.43.22, was set by City of Norwich Athletics Club, followed by Ely Runners with 20.53.57, but not far behind was NNBR’s A team in 22.06.49 for third overall and second fastest Norfolk club.
Stand-out NNBR individual performances included three stage winners: Charlotte Neale running 1.19.28 on the 10.81 miles stage 5 from Cley to Cromer taking in Beeston Bump; Finlay Swanson, who only recently joined the senior ranks and still runs in short trousers, posting 54.44 over the cake-fuelled 9.24 mile stage 7 from Mundesley to Lessingham, and the star turn and British international Robbie Britten running 1.57.52 over the 19.67 mile night time stage 12 from Scole to Thetford.
All concerned had a slow day on Monday.
Author: John Worrall