Sugar Loaf Saturday 30th October          Results

Organiser Douglas Adlam has got himself a winning formula with the Winter version of the Sugar Loaf race, especially when he can say “Numbers were a bit down at 97 – wasn’t the OMM on this weekend?” Indeed it was: with a dozen runners from Chepstow alone roaming over Dartmoor.

To accommodate almost 100 runners in the first steep, narrow lane, Douglas brought the start back to race HQ, the Crown Inn at Pantigelli, to allow half a minute of wider road for the field to thin out some.

Sunny Autumn weather with good views for those who took the opportunity to look around at the summit, and a well-marked course bore many favourable comments from the 97.

They also enjoyed the Crown’s “yummy” (the Organiser’s words) hot sausage rolls and other post-race treats.

A ding dong battle at the front had old rivals Mark Palmer and Matt Collins never more than a few seconds apart over the five miles, with the M40 Mynydd Du man prevailing over his younger Mynyddwyr de Cymru rival. “I worked hard to take advantage of Matt not being on top form” said Mark afterwards.

Helen Fines regained her title just 80 seconds behind her record on the slightly shorter course, and admitted that despite the fulsome course-marking “I still went wrong in the bracken – what a dizzy blonde! But now the English and British championships are over, it was a pleasure to enjoy the outing on one of my favourite courses.”