Granger and Hamblin enjoy a rollicking good time in Thornbury

Prize guys: The Westbury Harriers contingent at the Riverbank Rollick

THORNBURY Running Club’s Riverbank Rollick has long been renowned as one of the muddiest, wettest and toughest multi terrain races on the circuit – but this year it seems to have surpassed event its high standards.

Westbury Harriers had a decent presence in the event as it marked the start of their 2020 club championships and it is worth repeating the words of one of their men, Ian Gawinowski, from his account of the race taken from the club site to provide a glimpse of what the runners had to face on Sunday.

‘The Riverbank Rollick is infamous for its waterlogged and muddy conditions and this year was no exception. In fact I heard a few runners say it’s the worst they’ve know it,’ write Gawinowski.

‘The running is brutal. Firstly, you end up with a full body workout. Everything hurts from the tip of your toes to your finger tips.

‘Every muscle in the body is used just to stay upright. And you can’t just run along and ‘zone out’ you’ve got to be focussed 100% over the 10 miles, otherwise you’re likely to slip over into a bramble bush!’

So not your average Sunday morning race then!

Top Westbury man was Alex Hamblin, who finished third overall in 1hr 5mins 24secs behind Weston AC winner Chris McMillan (59:52, pictured left) and Alastair Cambell of Stroud (1:03.21) in second.

Westbury’s David Hobbs was fifth and first veteran over 50 in 69:58 just ahead of Portishead Running Club’s Jason Scott in sixth (70:16).

Ash Tuck (70:57) and Dylan Roberts (71:21) finished seventh and eighth as the first runners home for Bitton Road Runners and the host club Thornbury RC respectively.

The amazing Annabel Granger (pictured right in action the previous week at the South West Championships) continued her excellent form to place 11th overall and easily top woman in 72:20 from Chepstow’s Niki Morgan (75:09) with Thornbury’s Taryn Roberts placing a fine third in 76:03.

Also good to see Westbury’s Sophie Voller back in action after injury finishing fourth in 76:53. She also led Westbury to the women’s team prize with support from Alison Rogers and Liz Lovelock.

There were 458 finishers.



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