The fifth Race for Wildlife in aid of Cornwall Wildlife Trust and organised by Mounts Bay Harriers was an outstanding success with nearly 200 runners on the start line in wet and windy conditions. None of this seemed to deter them as they went off from Penwith College on the three miles up through Heamoor and Madron and then over the fields and stiles to Ding Dong, with one mile flat across the muddy moors and then a three mile downhill through Trythall and Bone Valley with the finish back at the college. The race in total was 7.5 miles long.
There were a few slips and trips along the way with the runners not knowing which running shoes to wear for the best. Should they wear trail shoes, which were ideal in muddy conditions, or road shoes, which were perfect for the tarmac sections of the course? Whichever they chose, for half the course, they would be slipping or sliding. The Cornish granite stiles took no prisioners in the damp conditions with the rain making them very slippery for the runners to get over.
The race leader, Tom Carthey of Falmouth Road Runners, was well ahead of second placed Gary Randall of Mounts Bay Harriers as he came back into Heamoor by the shops when a car door was opened into him and he went flying! He was so disorientated when he got up that he had to ask which way to go! Luckily he wasn’t too badly injured and went on to win the race in a brilliant time of 44.49. Gary finished behind him in 45.31 with fellow Harrier, John McWilliam in third place in 46.27.
For the ladies, Donna Raggett of Cornwall AC had a good run finishing in 53.02 with Revis Crowle of East Cornwall Harriers not far behind her in 53.47. Robyn Chesterman of Falmouth Road Runners was third in 54.06. First lady home for the host club was Karen McClay in 58.44.
The race was well supported by all the local Cornish clubs as well as some visitors from farther afield with Falmouth Runners picking up the male team prize and East Cornwall Harriers the female team prize.
Many thanks to Trythall School for providing a water station and to Penwith College for letting the race HQ be in their beautiful Porthcurno Building. Andy from Espresso, the mobile barista café, provided decent coffee to everyone. Also thanks to all the 40 marshals who gave up their Sunday morning to stand in the wind and rain and cheer on all the runners, without them events like this cannot happen!