Thursday, May 6, 2010


It was a Strider double in the latest race in the 2010 Circuito a Peu Marina Alta in Pego on Saturday May 1. Sole came third in the Ladies Vets C category in 58:40 and Jeff won the Gents Vets C section in a time of 42:18.

Despite the fact that the heavens opened just before the start of the 10 kilometre race, nearly 1,000 runners braved the distinctly damp conditions to finish the puddle-laden course. Vicent Mas Leyda, running for C A Dianium took the overall title, splashing home in 33:27. Runner-up was Juan Antonio Fernandez Cantos of C A Benidorm in 34:10, just in front of third-placed Sergi Soler Ginestar of C A Ondara in 34:28.

No Maxine McKinnon this week, so Patricia Lopez Vicedo of C A Xeresa took centre stage, and she finished in 41:06, exactly a minute in front of second-placed Inge van den Broeck. Olivia Peiro Sabater of C A Safor took third spot in 42:17.

Because of the inclement weather (and injuries), only three other Striders ran the 10 kilometres around the charming town of Pego, Tom defied the conditions to speed around in 38:55, John finished in 54:43 and Denise Stanners ran it in 1:01:11 and Louise (Ambler) seems to be getting back to her pre-accident form by tacking second place in the Vets B group in 45:14.


There were more fine performances from 11 Striders in the extremely demanding (and bloomin’ hilly)eulada race in the 2010 Circuit a Peu de Marina Alta. As always, superfast Tom was first home for the Striders in a relatively slow time for him of 47:05, but then he had run from home before the race. He was closely followed by Jeff (47:43), who Tom had nursed round and then Paul (Elliot) (55:36). Next were Jim (56:38) and Stretch (56:39), followed by Don (1:01:42), John (1:04:38), Sole (1:10:02), Des (1:10:01), Roger (1:13:35) and Denise (1:13:38).

More cups were added to the already bulging Striders' trophy cabinet after the race, as Jeff won the Vets C category, Sole was the winner of the Local Vets C category and honorary Strider Margaret Finch was second in the Vets C race in a time of 1:03:02.


According to the old adage, it's an ill wind that blows nobody good, but that couldn't be further from the truth in Marc Jacques' case. Liverpudlian Marc and his family were due to return to the UK a couple of days before the Teulada race, but, because their flight had been cancelled due to the volcanic ash blown across Europe from Iceland, he was able to run in the race. Not only did he run it, he managed 18th place (out of 900 starters) and was runner-up in the Vets A category in a first-class time of 42:14.

The overall winner of the 11 kilometre race, run in really warm conditions, was Vicent Mas Leyda, of C A Dianium, in a scorching 37:43. Juan Antonio Fernandez Cantos (38:49), running for C A Benidorm and Sergi Soler Ginestar (38:59) of C A Ondara were second and third respectively. C A Dianium's Maxine McKinnon (44:12) was once again first home in the ladies section, followed by Patricia Lopez Vicedo (48:05) of C A Xeresa in second and Ana Alberola Puigcerver (48:50) in third.


The 2010 Circuit a Peu Marina Alta was back on track on Saturday April 17, with the third race in the nine event series. The venue was the town that is the midway point between Alicante and Valencia, El Verger (Vergel), and despite it being a cold and overcast evening, nearly 1,300 runners took part in the 10 kilometre race in and around the town.

The Striders, as usual, were well represented, with nine members finishing in good times. As usual, Tom was the first to cross the line in a time of 34:57. Jim was next in 39:07, closely followed by Jeff in 40.06, which was fast enough to win him the Vets C category. The other Striders, Paul (Elliot) (45:11), Brian (47:20), Don (51:22), John (52:38), Des (57:54) and Denise (58:33) all came home well within the hour mark. In the Ladies Vets B category, Louise was fourth in 44:51.

Jeff’s main rival, Norbert de Wulf (Wolfie), made his first appearance of the series but Jeff managed to hold him off, beating him by over a minute and a half.

It is a fairly flat course and therefore there were some pretty fast times recorded. The winner of a very exciting men's race was Emilio Vizcaya Gregorio of C A Dianium in 30:25, just one second in front of second-placed Mounir Horma, running for C A Franc Beneyto R Denia. Third place went to El Houssine Es Semaali (GETP Running Team) in 31:56,

After her recent triumph in the Denia half marathon, Maxine McKinnon (C A Dianium) was the first lady home in 37:14, which was over a minute and a half quicker than runner-up Patricia Lopez Vicedo (C A Xersa). Gema Canet Meri (C A Safor) was third in 40:16.


Only three Striders took part in the 2010 Denia half on Sunday March 28, Jeff, Paul (Elliott) and Don and they all made light of the very tough conditions. It was an early start made even earlier by the fact that the clocks had gone forward an hour that morning and it was a pretty warm day and the course contained lots of ups and downs, not many hills but plenty of steps and uneven surfaces. Despite that, Jeff managed a PB of 1:31:49, Paul came home in 1:42:29 and Don crossed the line in 2:10:32.
Unfortunately no trophies for any of them this time, as, unlike previous years, there was only one Veterans (age 35 and over) category. Jeff came 133rd overall (46th in the Vets category), Paul was 332nd (182nd in Vets) and Don was 630th (793).
Maxine (McKinnon) added yet another title to her already extensive collection when she was the first lady home, finishing in an excellent time of 1:22:00. In the men's race Andres Mico Martinez quite literally flew around in 1:07:40, crossing the line over five minutes ahead of second-placed Said Day Day (1:12:54).