Jane Ashby looks relaxed in the Peterborough Marathon.

ATHLETICS: After so many weeks of competitive inactivity, it now seems that Ryston Runners AC members are popping up all over the place, engaging in events from 600m to over 50 miles.

Four junior members were in action at the Athletics Norfolk competition in Norwich on Saturday.

Rory and Leo Wood, u11, both ran well in the 600m, finishing in 2.07.7 and 2.08.0 respectively, for fourth and fifth places, with Leo setting himself a personal best time. 

Evie Clayton and Alisha Greenwood, u13, both ran in the mile race. Clayton finished seventh in 6.39.5, just three 10ths shy of her PB set the previous week, with Greenwood just behind in eighth in 6.41.4. Greenwood also had a winning first outing in the high jump and cleared 1.05m.

The postponed Valentine 10K, organised by Norfolk Gazelles, took place on Sunday and eight Ryston members were among the 488 finishers. 

Callum Stanforth made the top 10, finishing ninth in 34.44, while Chris Balmer made the top 20 with 36.16.

Darren Easter’s 39.32 saw him finish just outside the top 50 overall but 10th in the M45 category. Stephen Lee was 71st in 41.45, with Jason Cooper and Jason Hawes just making the top 150, both timing in on 46 minutes dead, with Cooper helping Hawes to achieve a significant PB.

Tristan Langley was 171st with 46.50, and Jade Cooper completed the Ryston line up in 472nd place in 75.06.

Wendy and Kevin Farquhar took part in the Haughley Park cross country event. With two hours allowed to complete as much of the tough course as they could, or wanted to, in awful weather, Wendy did two laps (10k) in 1.18 and Kevin a half marathon distance in 1.42.

Two members ran in the Sublime Peterborough Marathon. Jane Ashby ran 4.27.14, over a testing course, to win her category (W70), and also beat all the W60 and W65 competitors.

Anna Smith struggled over the last six miles, but was pleased with a finishing time of 3.48.55.

Dickie Ebbs attempted to run the fastest time ever recorded for the complete Peddars Way. Unfortunately, the weather and conditions worked against him and the previous best time was not broken but he did achieve second spot on the all-time rankings and ran 40 minutes faster than the winner of last year’s race.

Several club members turned out to run with the Montane-sponsored athlete, and to help with marshalling and support.

Ryston chairman Rob Simmonds accompanied Ebbs on the first leg on a muddy, slimy track into a banging head-on wind.

John Hopgood and Owen Jary took over the mantle for the second leg, during which Ebbs began to suffer from cramped quads, a result of the early effort and cold, wet conditions. 

Family members Paul Ratnage, Georgia Ratnage and Natalie Ebbs provided moral support until Malcolm Tuff and Will Honeybone stepped up for the third leg, with its rolling hills.

Friends from Lincoln took over to run the hardest 14-mile leg, by which time it was clear the record was not on but they all plugged on to within a few miles from Checkpoint 4 where the arrival of Ryston’s Nic Bensley and Martin Sheldrick, and Phil Thompson and Neil Stapleton running up to meet him lifted Ebbs’ spirits. 

Ebbs said: “The final kilometre to the beach was great with so many people there. I felt good to be part of the running community. I felt sorry to have let everyone down, as I had not beaten the record but I believe it is still achievable and I will aim to take it, knowing the level of help and support at hand.”

The record stands at five hours 33, Ebbs achieved 6.07.

Ebbs also expressed thanks to Sue Tuff, Helen Reed, Jon Benstead and Elaine Lumley for marshalling road crossing points.

Cath Duhig walked 5,000m in a control race at Elche in Spain. 

Enjoying far better weather conditions than any of her Ryston clubmates over the weekend, she clocked 32.50 and, despite being last in the race by more than a lap, and over 25 years older than the next youngest competitor, she was pleased just to have completed the event, without too much damage after the lay-off.