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HRRL - Stubbington 10k


The wait was over and after the festive season of excess Totton RC assembled on a blustery January morning for the first HRRL race of 2023! Stubbington 10k is always a popular race as historically it has been a fast course and perfect for a PB, this year no one knew quite what to expect as the course had been completely changed. This was due to the minor detail of the bypass opening making it impossible for 2000 runners to run across it part way down, could you imagine the angry drivers! They probably would have got themselves so worked up they ended up like the car on the opposite side of the M27 some of us got to see on fire on the way to the event.


So new course or old, what did you all think? I checked the elevation against last year and this one is flatter. Original course has 157ft of elevation and the new course has 81ft of elevation so if all the fates align this could be a super speedy course. So keep a close eye on entries for next year, they sold out in a few hours this year and are likely to do the same again for next year. However there's not a massive need to panic and they were coming up hourly on the swaps page in the two week before. A combination of injury or 'o bugger I've eaten far too much over Christmas there's no way my legs will support the new bigger me round a 10k', either way there will always be options. The third option is to not bother with the race and continue the Christmas eating (eyes up camembert that still hasn't been eaten from the festive period.....).


The new course may have been flatter but no-one remembered to order the right weather and we were battling the blustery gusts from the get go. On the plus side it was biblical with hail stones in Totton 15 mins before the start time and not long after we had started there was a torrential downpour over the centre of Stubbington, all of which we mainly missed out on the course. The wind was still a pig though, it was one of those winds that was always in your face, no matter which way the course turned we were always running into bloody head wind! I don't know about you guys but running into wind makes me 6000 times more tired and I had to have a nap when I got home. I'm blaming the wind even if Emily pointed out it's actually because I'm getting old (it's a fair point but I'm still blaming the wind).




So the course! First we all played a rousing game of sardines at the start line, don't tell the husband but I got quite up close and personal with some unknown runners. The start was a crush for a lot of people as it was very narrow, there was a lot of adjusting your stride to ensure you didn't kick anyone or kick them over. Kirsty this is where you and Neil should have started, if you had kicked him over at the start you could have beaten him with a nice and easy run! Although it would have then taken away the tale of the epic battle for a lifetime supply of McDonalds. I think we can devise a big mac on a stick attached to a helmet to ensure Neil ups his output.





The course ran out of the centre of Stubbington onto the main Gosport Road towards Solent Airport (I didn't know there was an airport here, this wouldn't seem so bad if I didn't work in aviation). There were no helicopters on stand so no cheating, we had to continue to run into the wind instead. Airports even small ones are rather large and the majority of the course was taken up doing a big loop round the outside of the airfield which led us down onto the seafront at Lee-on-the-Solent and a flashback to Gosport half. And of course being on the seafront the wind got stronger. Did I mention the wind? it wasn't the best part.




According to strava we then tackled 'heartbreak hill'...... having run the real heartbreak hill in Boston I can only assume this segment was named by someone who thinks 1m elevation is a mountain. There were no tears, no one seized up, in fact I don't think many people noticed there was a hill. Or, it could be all that forest running with TRC that makes the hills look easy! (this coming from the person who moans the most about hills though I'm pretty sure it wasn't a real hill). We then wound our way down towards Titchfield Haven nature reserve where we did a small loop that enabled us to see each other and cheer each other on. This appeared to me to be the really windy part, half way through the loop we turned back and the wind should have been behind us, somehow it managed to be in our faces AGAIN and even stronger.



Ok the wind did die down once the loop was over and we had turned for home, with 2k to go it gave us a break. The plus side is this allowed people to power through the last 2k and head for that finish. As always Emily was there to take photos as we all flew by, some waving, some puffing and some dying silently. Everyone knew there was one more turn and we would be in the centre of Stubbington heading into the final straight. BUT WAIT! There wasn't the usual final straight was there........... NO. This year we got to do a loop past the finish arch and come in from behind. And from what I can gather not a single person (me 100%) looks at the course route before hand as we all started to surge for the sprint finish, and then we all had to slow down again as we didn't realise there was a loop round the back, doh!. So we all got to do a second sprint finish! So now when you say you don't have it left in you, remember today you managed it twice!


We had some cracking PBs out there today and well done to everyone who nailed it! and everyone in general, I'm sure many of us looked out the window at the rain at 8am and then looked longingly back at the bed. That was the easy option but we didn't take it, we went, we ran and then we could legitimately eat cake! GO TEAM TOTTON!





The Epic Battle for the McDonalds.........


For those who missed it Kirsty and Neil had a race bet on. If Neil beat Kirsty he would win free McDonalds for life! This photo sums up the heroic effort put in by Neil, under a kilometre to the end of the race, he's in front, there's no sign of Kirsty behind him.......but,






Maybe if Neil had seen Kirsty's totally unconcerned face as she went past the same spot shortly after he would have pushed harder....

It was a close run thing but you'll be happy to know Neil will not be able to eat himself into a early McDonalds induced gave at the expense of Kirsty anytime soon.

Kirsty - 47:04

Neil - 47:05 .




Stubbington 10k Results. (taken from athlinks)


Stuart Booth 00:37:43

David Ullett 00:38:11 PB

Lee Trueman 00:40:09

Ian Page 00:40:43 PB

Neil White 00:41:06

Rob Kendall 00:42:49

Amanda Miles 00:43:55

Tony Lees 00:44:13

Patricia Spodzieja 00:46:01

Eamonn Rivers 00:46:01

Jon Perrett 00:45:57 PB

Helen Herman-Bonaer 00:46:03

Dean Lucas 00:45:52

Kelly Kendall 00:46:15 PB

Jacquie Barlow 00:46:21

Andrew Warren 00:46:41

Kirsty Macbeth 00:47:04

Neil Cameron 00:47:05

Elizabeth White 00:47:57

Mike Gordon 00:48:59

Peter Ellis 00:48:01

Nikki Gowers 00:49:09 PB

Stuart Foster 00:49:41

Mel Green 00:51:41 PB

Christopher Barnes 00:51:10

Carly Lucas 00:53:21

Amanda Jones 00:54:15

Sarah Gordon 00:55:45

Louise Henning 00:55:48

Michelle Price 00:55:57 PB

Samantha Bowyer 00:57:24

Ann-Marie Vanderplank 00:57:17

Craig Taylor 00:57:34

Caroline Orchard 00:57:34

Victoria Couzens 00:59:34

Laura Harvie 01:00:00

Virginia Collins 01:00:54

Dorothea Kennard 01:03:44

Kim Hall 01:04:30

Tanya Davis 01:04:40

Alison Kaines 01:05:05

Rebecca Chambers 01:14:39

Natasha Foster 01:16:42

Caroline Irwin 01:23:25

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