On a bright and brisk January morning down on the farm, with underfoot conditions offering both mud and fast going, Couriers put in a good performance but, without Matt as a counterweight to the Valley’s recently acquired race winner, Jimmy Richards, we were always likely to miss out to our rival neighbours and so it proved.
However, there was great spirit in the camp and some courageous runs, none more so than from Eliot, who has been ill since the Club ‘do’ [no causal connection as far as I know] but who battled strongly on virtually no training to be 3rd overall, less than 45 seconds behind the winner and 1st Senior Man in the County Champs. Also in the County competition, Bev and Mike had the misfortune to miss out on medals in the veteran stakes, both hitting the heartbreak 4th positions, Mike gaining some consolation by leading the team [Russell 6th and Dave 10th] to bronze with the same points total as Croft, the silver medal winners.
Second Courier behind Eliot in the League race was Luke, who showed great strength in 6th and is surely still improving. Mike was a fine 9th and 2nd V40, with Russell close up in 14th and beginning to show again the pedigree that made him a champion in the last century. Richie was a bit disappointed with his 21st, perhaps having gone too hard at the start. Maybe at Presteigne where he made his debut just a year ago, he will get it right and begin to fulfil his undoubted potential. Nursing a sore calf, Dave eased round in 25th and 1st V50 with the Herring, back in 44th, 1st V60 and bearing the injuries from the previous day’s altercation, like the SAS commander he is [shouldn’t that be ‘isn’t’?] Close up in 48th came Geoff, 2nd V55, another pre-Christmas casualty of a nasty virus that laid him low and unable to train. Kev strode out to 62nd and earned the gratitude of those behind him on the second lap for emptying the water splash. Some suspect him of pulling the plug, while others believe that liquid displacement may have been responsible. If you see him without the plug, that may be a clue…..
Finally, to our fantastic one woman team, Bev, who found the race hard going, with her breathing affected by the cold, but still managed a mightily impressive 16th and 2nd V40.