The Nant yr Arian Silver Trail is one of the first dates to fill in local runners’ diaries, the annual half marathon race offering challenging terrain coupled with spectacular scenery in a beautiful location.
This year’s event attracted close to 80 runners and while the terrain was as challenging as ever the descending mist meant the views were few and far between.
That did not affect Aberystwyth Athletic Club’s Owain Schiavone who cantered home in first place in a time of 1.38.36. Mark Whitehead was not too far behind in fourth place in a time of 1.45.18 and Balazs Pinter finishing in the top ten in a time of 1.55.32.
Patrick Finney finished in 2.02.27 while Lynwen Huxtable continued her excellent recent form as the first lady home in a time of 2.03.48 with Ivan Courtier finishing in 2.07.21. Damian Sidnell was first in his 60+ age category in a time of 2.09.31 with Will Lerigo finishing in 2.11.41 and Mel Hopkins completing the course in 2.14.03.
Peter Tooze finished in 2.21.45, Amanda Binks 2.21.47, Kevin Holland 2.24.16 and Dan Back crossed the end line in 2.26.24. Coming in around the 2.30 mark were Paul Rose 2.30.32, Maggie Collingborn 2.31.11, Kirsten Hughes 2.32.38 and Karen Davies a second later in 2.32.39 with Toby Driver 2.33.23.
Morgan Commins finished in 2.40.08, Chelsey Morris 2.42.53, Dave Humphreys 2.45.50, Megan Glover 2.48.31, Christine Zarges 2.55.47, Carol Macy 2.56.08, and Anna Bates crossed the line in 2.56.10.
Considering that running the race was a last minute decision for Owain Schiavone it turned out to be a very good one,
He said: “I was to due to be somewhere else on the weekend but those plans were cancelled at the last minute and I managed to secure a place at Nant yr Arian.
“I love running here, a challenging course, plenty of mud and water, and if there is no fog, some great views, and all on our doorstep. The organisers did a fantastic job once again and I was delighted to secure first place in a very strong field of runners.”
As well as the adults there were also races for the youngsters which also proved popular as they took on the Nant yr Arian challenge.
60 young people raced around the courses in their various age categories with Aber AC members again securing key victories as Yasmin Evans, Leusa Gruffudd, Dafydd Lewis, Oli Lerigo all came out on top in their respective runs.
Aberystwyth AC youth coach and race organiser Enid Gruffudd was delighted with the turnout: “We are very fortunate here in Ceredigion to have very dedicated youngsters who are willing to support these events and give it their all.
“The terrain is just as challenging for the youngsters as it is for adults and the young runners deserve so much credit for their efforts.”
Moving northwards and a metric marathon race was held at Eirias Park in Colwyn Bay. The Metric Marathon distance 26.2km (16.3mile) is billed as an ideal stepping stone for runners to progress from a half marathon through to a full 26.2 mile marathon.
Aber AC’s Tracey Breedon made the journey north and out of a field of over 400 runners, competed the course in 34th place and won her age category in a time of 1.57.31,
She explained: “The course itself is great, starts from the athletic track then takes in the north Wales coastline before returning to the track itself.
“As always when running on the coast, the wind will play a part at some point and so it proved on the way back – it was quite a battle. I was delighted though with my time and winning my age category was a great bonus.”
If you would like to hear more about Aberystwyth Athletic Club and join in its activities visit aberystwythac.wordpress.com or find the club on Facebook.