The latest from the Axe Valley Runners...

AXE VALLEY  Runners’ Paul Johns took on a challenge to complete 10 iron man distances in 10 days. Unfortunately, due to ankle issues early on in the challenge it was decided to dropdown to five iron man distances broke up into two full and six halfs to manage the challenge (Quintuple Ultratriathlon 19km swim, 900km Bike, 211 km run).

An early morning sea swim along the coastline of Seaton Bay at 6am started the triathlon. This led into five bike laps that took in the East Devon countryside before pushing through to complete the run.

The sea swim was fairly calm apart from two choppy days and the thunderous threatened weather didn’t materialise throughout the bike and run which could have made the challenge even more demanding.

Paul wished to thank you to his support crew who on occasions lost where he was, but without them this challenge would have been a nonstarter and for those who came out on various parts of the route to encourage and experience some of the challenge.

Torrential rain greeted the lady AVRs as they arrived at the start line for the second Women Can (Women Only) Marathon last Sunday.

This did not bode well for the gruelling 26-mile, multi-terrain course that lay ahead which rambled across the spectacular clifftops, countryside and riversides of East Devon.

However, by mile two, the rain had stopped and  sun peeked out from behind the clouds. Despite the course’s punishing nature, Eleanor Wood powered through, arriving home in 4:15:02 – 5th in her age category, 9th overall. Next to finish was Anna Mcloughlin in  6:06:23. Sarah Herfet, Bec Davey, Angela Kerr, Sam Tooze and Sam Miller finished together in 6:24:22 – gesture which encapsulated the spirit of the day – women coming together to celebrate 100 years of their vote and that ‘they can’.

Roger Bramley was the sole AVR entrant in the Burrator 10k, a scenic route set in the stunning surroundings of Burrator reservoir and run in warm conditions. He was pleased to finish in 49:42, 85th out of 517 finishers.

Last Sunday saw the second running of the Casterbridge Half Marathon in Dorchester.

This picturesque race on closed roads followed an undulating route through the Dorset countryside. In a field of 1,016 Clare Hansford finished 85th overall, 6th lady and 1st V50 in 1:46:47. Stephen Grigg finished 166th in 1:55:09.

Two AVRs completed the Jurassic Coast 100km race that began at 9pm on Friday evening from Chesil Beach in Dorset and finished along the coast path at Exmouth the following morning. Patrick Devine-Wright finished in 1st place in 12 hours and 34min with Tim Lenton in 5th in 13 hours 55min.

This article first appeared in the Independent. To get the latest articles when they appear, buy the print edition every Sunday or subscribe to our online edition HERE.