SCOTT Ultra Series 2017 – Race THREE
Northants “Shires and Spires” Ultra 35
4th June 2017
The Go Beyond Shires and Spires Ultra 2017 took place on Sunday 4th June at Lamport Hall in Northamptonshire.
At 8:30 am on Sunday 4th June 2017 one hundred and seventy five runners crossed the start line under a beautiful June sky for the 9th “Shires and Spires” ultramarathon with just shy of 35 miles of beautiful rolling Northamptonshire countryside ahead of them. Although the day started with sunshine and warmth, by late morning the clouds rolled in and the rain soon followed. The runners will have appreciated the cooler conditions although it made for a damp afternoon it failed to dampen their spirits as they headed round the course.
Whilst we didn’t see any of the course records smashed this year, there were still some impressive times recorded for the distance covered,
including taking in some challenging hills on this undulating course. First across the finish line was Northampton Road Runners’ Norbert Mihalik
with a time of 04:25:26; taking an impressive 30 minutes off his time for 2016. A determined Norbert led the field from start but there was a battle
for second place between Jon Taylor and Rory Harris, with Jon taking second place in a time of 04:44:33, and taking 1st prize in the male 40-49
age category. Rory was not far behind finishing with a time of 4:47:03.
In the ladies’ race, Melissa Arkinstall led the way with Wellingborough & District AC member Helen Etherington close on her heels. Melissa crossed the line in 22nd place overall in 05:48:01, also taking first in the 40-49 female age category, with Helen finishing in 05:50:15. It was the first time that Melissa has won an Go Beyond Ultra event and she said that her dad would be very proud of her achievement. What makes it particularly poignant is that her first win would be in her maiden name, as she is about to be married. Third lady home was Nicky Haynes, just ducking
home under the 6 hour mark with a very respectable time of 05:59:53. In the Team competition it was Wellingborough & District AC that took first place over Northampton Road Runners.
Congratulations also go to the winners of our other veteran categories. Martin Terry took male V50 with an impressive 5th place overall in a time of 04:59:41. Guy Emmens took V60 in 05:34:21 and Robert Nash V70, with a time of 07:58:35. Denise Llewellyn-James took ladies V50 in 06:43:43.
Northants “Shires and Spires” Ultra 35 continues to attract those runners taking their first tentative steps into the world of ultrarunning and, as with
every year, there were plenty of first timers treading the same trails as the seasoned runners. For the second year ‘The Juggler’, aka Tim Butler from Lincoln & District Runners, was back running the race – this time in a tiger mask. As well as Tim being a bit of a talking point amongst the runners, it is great to see some fantastic team spirit, so many making new friends, conquering personal goals, and gaining new stories to tell.
As always, immense praise and thanks was voiced for the enthusiastic Go Beyond Events Team and, of course, for the legendary Go Beyond Fruit Cake on offer at all of the aid stations.
Our thanks go out to the estate team at Lamport Hall and Gardens who have, as always, been very supportive and I feel privileged that we get to base the race in such stunning surroundings.
We also thank Boston Therapeutic Massage who worked tirelessly at the finish working their own particular brand of magic on tired and aching legs and Adrian Howes Photography for capturing your achievements.
Of course special thanks go to our sponsors and retail partners SCOTT Sports and The Running Shop Northampton for helping to make sure the event can take place. Our Charity partner is Teach Africa
Shires and Spires Ultra 2017 Top three Men and Women Results