By Steve Elliff
Saturday 8th July saw members of Wirksworth Running Club descend on mass to the Derwent River Relays, organised by our friends at Belper Harriers.
We fielded five teams for the relays, which were assigned following careful deliberation, with three of our runners going twice to make up the numbers. In teams of four, you take it in turns to tackle the 5.5km course, which is a nice mix of road and trail, winding along the River Derwent.
The heavens opened as we assembled for the relays, causing a good degree of deliberation about the best running shoes for the job. Despite the damp conditions, there were no damp spirits, and the rain even eased before the first five runners set off. To everyone’s relief the mud remained firm despite the rain. Rumours of a flat course were quickly dismissed, following a course change which now includes a sneaky 47 metres of ascent! The pot holes in the carpark provide a somewhat exciting sprint finish, as you prepare to hand over to the next member of your team. The nature of the relays makes for a really supportive and sociable event, with a good level of cheering, support and banter as you wait to run, or for your team mates to return.
Wirksworth Running Club came away with some fantastic team results, with our Male Seniors (including Aimi) coming in 12th overall, Mixed Seniors coming in 14th, Male V50 coming in 17th and Mixed V40 coming in 19th. Whilst there didn’t appear to be a V60 category, our Male V60 team (including Denise) came in 39th, probably winning this category! With over 61 teams competing, these are an impressive set of results. On an individual level, David Brassington completed the course in the fastest time for Wirksworth, in 21 minutes and 48 seconds, coming 15th out of 244 entries.
Our newly purchased brew kit made an appearance whilst we waited for the prize giving, with the refreshment tent also stocking beer for those looking for something a little stronger. Following the results we went for beers in Belper to raise a toast to a successful and enjoyable river relays. This was one of our clubs biggest entries into this event yet, and there was already enthusiastic discussion in the pub about next year’s team tactics!
David B 1st
David B 2nd
Graham S 2nd
Graham S 1st