Imber Court Relays - Tuesday 13th July

Race Reports Jul 17, 2021

This was the first real club event for far too long, and a welcome return to the Imber Court Relays, an event SHAEF Shifters have participated in pretty much since we were established.

This year, we had 4 teams of 4 taking part, the SHAEF Grifters (Rob Thornton, Justin Reid, Rodney McCulloch, Will Rawling, the SHAEF Drifters (Nick Rowe, Richard Evans, Rob Jones, Julian Diamond), the SHAEF Blisters (Tom Cassidy, Ian Haylock, Ciaran Murphy,  Gareth Johns), and the SHAEF Sisters (Maria Jovani, Louise Chai, Helen Davies and Naomi Johns).

After some late team changes, everyone was there on time and we were ready to go. The only thing missing was the promise of a burger from the BBQ afterwards!

SHAEF Drifters
SHAEF Blisters
SHAEF Sisters

No photo from the SHAEF Grifters. They were obviously taking it too seriously to pose for the camera.

Before we knew it, the 76 teams were underway!!!

The runners went haring off around the sports pitches and out of sight, and then before we knew it they came back in to hand over the the second runners. Lots of encouragement for all the finishing runners and in the blink of an eye the following leg runners were underway as well.  That repeated itself for the four legs and that was that! Lots of super performances and times across the 4 teams; here are the times of all the runners:

SHAEF Grifters: Rob Thornton (8:36), Justin Reid (8:40), Rodney McCulloch (9:13), Will Rawling (9:09).

SHAEF Drifters: Nick Rowe (9:58), Richard Evans (10:11), Rob J0nes (9:50), Julian Diamond (10:45).

SHAEF Blisters: Tom Cassidy (11:20), Ian Haylock (10:06), Ciaran Murphy (10:23), Gareth Johns (9:53).

SHAEF Sisters: Maria Jovani (10:52), Louise Chai (13:52), Helen Davies (13:49), Naomi Johns (12:36).

The Grifters came in 5th overall in 35:38, 4th in the SM category. The Drifters came in 19th overall in 40:44, 5th in the VM category. The Blisters came in 21st overall in 41:42, 9th in the SM category, and the Sisters came in 55th overall in 51:09, 3rd in the SW category.

A big well done to everyone!

Lots of sterling performances, but well done in particular to Rob Thornton, who kaned it around the 1.6 miles for the fastest time from SHAEF for the evening and make a top 5 position for the SHAEF Grifters a shaw thing. He wasn't able to help his team mount the podium though with very impressive performances from other teams, in particular Epson and Ewell. Will Rawling might have gone better but blamed his mediocrity on exertions the previous weekend, though he could have done with a pick for digging a hole to climb into. He said something about how to jog real is hard, and also complained that after a previous run he had a rash for days on his legs, but he was rambling.

Ciaran's pre-race strides tones him up for the actual event. Here he is coming towards the finish
Gareth wasn't interested in a post run beer; ice on those calves was more important
With SHAEF support that was partisan, chopping through the field should have been easy for Will

Afterwards, there was some classic SHAEF socialising, the presentation awards, and a combination of walking, cycling and running to get back home, some of it via the pub.

Big thanks to 26.2 for the invite and their hosting of such a great local event. Look forward to the next mass SHAEF race as they look to be coming thick and fast now...


All bar Justin, probably doing some strides
Helen bringing it home on leg 3 for the Sisters
Naomi one the leg 4 home straight. The boys definitely need to work on making their race faces more cheery!