Lavaredo Dolomites Ultra
John Butters recently travelled to the Dolomites in Northern Italy to take part in the Lavaredo Ultra race. Attracting many of the European fell racing elite, the 80 kilometre (48 mile) trail race also incorporates some 14, 000 feet of climbing with hair-raising trails that wend over precipitous drops and vertiginous gorges. JB had a fine run to finish 122nd out of the 900 finishers in a time of 12 hours 4 minutes and 46 seconds. He was also 12th in his age category, with the Frenchman Remi Loubet the overall winner, 1st home in 9 hours 16 minutes and 34 seconds.
World Masters Championships Half Marathon
Meanwhile Loansdean resident and leading national Over 65 Gavin Bayne made the journey in the opposite direction to John, going North to Tampere in Finland to compete in the World Masters Half Marathon Championships.
His journey was not without its difficulties, however, with his luggage – including all his running kit, bar an old pair of Nike Pegasus trainers - getting lost in transit and Gavin having to pull in favours from GB and Northern Ireland team manager, fellow Morpeth Harrier Archie Jenkins to have the correct vest and shorts without which he couldn’t have run. ‘I wouldn’t have got to the starting line without him,’ he notes.
In breezy but warm conditions of some 22 degrees over a course comprising three long and one short loops, Gavin got off to a decent start but struggled a little on the 2nd lap. 7th after lap 1, he did however start to pick off some of those in front, including the Dutch world Over 65 10k champion.
Finishing strongly, Gavin was 4th Over 65 in a time of 1 hour 27 minutes 40 seconds, with the race won by fellow GB and NI runner Paul Hughes, now based in the States, in a time of 1:22:32.
Missing out on an individual medal by just over a minute, his travails were made worthwhile when he picked up a share of a team Silver behind the USA, with the 3rd GB and NI runner clocking 1:55: 26.