Saturday, September 25, 2021

Kendal Film Festival is back this November and partners with Merrell

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Outside basecamp at Kendal Mountain Festival

Merrell has announced a new partnership with Kendal Mountain Festival, the ultimate gathering for everyone that loves the outdoors.

Merrell will become a partner sponsor of the Festival’s Mountain Running sessions and its Run Film programme which will feature an incredible line-up of the latest high-quality releases from adventure filmmakers across the globe.

The award-winning Kendal Mountain Festival, taking place from 18th- 21st November 2021. is an annual, four-day-long festival hosted at Kendal, in the heart of the Lake District, that is dedicated to sharing awe-inspiring, life-affirming stories from the world of outdoor adventure.

Whilst, for obvious reasons, last year had to be the first-ever fully digital event, this year the festival will adopt a hybrid live and digital format. This means visitors get to experience live the legendary tented Basecamp Village at the heart of the festival, which this year will be packed with great activations, competitions and demonstrations from multiple outdoor brands as well as boasting a stage.

A non-stop four-day line-up of entertainment includes a wide range of talks featuring adventurers, outdoors athletes and explorers as well live music, adventure film premieres, engaging literature events and a host of more active entertainment such as trail runs, dance, parties, and hikes.

The partnership will provide Merrell with a focal role at the famous festival, bringing their expertise and acclaimed trail running footwear collection to an audience of outdoor enthusiasts. A number of Merrell ambassadors will also be participating at some of the festival’s key events.

Simon Sweeney, UK marketing manager at Merrell said: “We are growing quickly in UK trail running, with a leading trail running shoes, such as the MOAB Flight and the Agility Peak 4. We want to consolidate our presence and grow our profile within the UK trail running community and believe an association with this authentic and established outdoor festival will help us achieve this.”

“The Kendal Mountain Film Festival is renowned amongst UK and overseas outdoors communities, and we are delighted to be associated with the dedicated mountain running sessions and superb run-related content via the festival’s Run Film programme.”

Clive Allen, of Kendall Mountain Festival, said: “Merrell is a heritage outdoor brand that we’re proud to welcome to the festival family. We’re delighted with its support, especially after all the uncertainties and difficulties filmmakers have had to cope with throughout the COVID pandemic. Excitement and anticipation for this year’s festival are already growing exponentially, and to be able to focus on so many outdoors activities, including trail running, throughout the four days of the festival, means there’s something for everyone to enjoy and engage with.”

For more information about Merrell’s trail running range go to merrell.com/UK

For more information about Kendall Mountain Festival go to kendalmountainfestival.com

Denmark ready for Garmin CHALLENGE HERNING

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On Saturday, Denmark will ‘breathe triathlon’, as Garmin CHALLENGEHERNING takes place. With a beautiful and especially fast course, lightning times are expected in both the pro and the age group races.

The pro race will not have a very large start list with pro athletes due to COVID 19 measures, but it does not make the race less interesting. In the men’s race, German Boris Stein appears to be the top favourite on paper, but he can expect opposition from just under twenty other top athletes who are all hoping to win. Among those competing in the men’s race are Danes, Germans, British, Belgians, Canadians and Norwegians.

In the women’s race, there will be eleven pro athletes competing for the Garmin CHALLENGEHERNING title. Denmark is represented, but also Switzerland, Germany, Austria, Great Britain, the Netherlands and Norway. It is almost a certainty that there will be some hard racing to get on the highest step of the podium.

The middle distance course is beautiful as it heads through the midwestern countryside of Jutland: a calm and beautiful lake swim in Lake Fuglsang on the outskirts of Herning. The lake’s calm water and the long straights makes for a perfect swim with many opportunities to set a personal best. The bike course takes the athletes to the countryside where they will ride through many small villages and down the main street of Vildbjerg. The course is flat with only one hill, Trehøje, and many long straights. This gives athletes the best possible opportunity for a personal best. The run takes place in the city centre of Herning.

This Saturday you can follow Garmin CHALLENGEHERNING live timing and social media updates via www.challenge-family.live Age groupers will start their journey at 09:00 BST. The pro race starts 09:45 BST.

2022 Cardiff Triathlon – new middle-distance triathlon added

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Always Aim High Events has announced a new Legend distance for their iconic Cardiff city Triathlon, with entries now open to book this middle-distance event.

After successfully delivering this event for six years, this new distance will be the first of its kind for Cardiff and be the result of working in partnership with both Cardiff and Newport City Council.

Taking place on the weekend of 25th-26th June 2022, The Cardiff Triathlon is widely regarded as one of the finest city races in Europe, and one of the very few that offers a technical and fast city-based race on closed roads.

2019 saw more than 1,500 triathletes from across the globe take part in this flat, fast, and friendly race, and after missing out for two consecutive years, along with this new route, numbers are set to increase considerably for 2022.

The new Legend route will start like all the other distances, with the exclusive opportunity to swim in Cardiff Bay for an exhilarating 1.2 miles (1.9k). Participants will then head into transition set out in the Roald Dahl Plass, a stunning amphitheatre overlooked by the impressive Wales Millennium centre.

The bike leg will lead competitors out on a 56 mile (90k) flat fast bike route, first onto a part lap of the closed road section before leading out onto open roads heading east through Cardiff’s industrial heritage and then on to the beautiful Wentlooge flatlands before entering into neighbouring district of Newport.

The race will end with a 13.1 miles (21.1K) run, on a lapped route in Cardiff Bay, with a great opportunity to catch all the sights along the way and set a fast pace. Culminating in a sprint finish; along Bute Place, around the corner where they cross the finish line under the shadow of the world-famous Wales Millennium Centre in front of thousands of spectators and supporters.

Nigel Kendrick, Managing Director at Always Aim High Events, said: “We are incredibly excited to be able to introduce this new middle-distance triathlon at our Cardiff event. After what has been an unprecedented couple of years for the events industry we are keen to showcase the growth of Triathlon, particularly in Wales, and were better than the capital city.

“It is especially pleasing for us as we have worked hard alongside our committed supporters at Cardiff Council, Newport City Council, the Welsh Government and Welsh and British Triathlon to build a world-class event in this most iconic of venues.

“We have also had confirmation from British Triathlon that this event will be the British Age Group Sprint Distance Triathlon Championships as well as a World Triathlon Age Group Qualifier.”
Councillor Jane Mudd, Leader of Newport City Council, added: “I’m delighted that our city will again be part of a major sporting event. Cardiff Triathlon has a fantastic reputation and I’m sure this new challenge will prove to be ‘legendary’. We’re looking forward to welcoming the competitors into Newport next June.”

Councillor Peter Bradbury, Cabinet Member for Culture and Leisure said, “We’re really looking forward to hosting the Cardiff Triathlon in 2022 and seeing the athletes back doing something they love. The pandemic saw many people change their exercise habits so it’s great to welcome this new distance for even more participants in next year’s race.

“This new and exciting route will ensure athletes – and spectators – get to experience Cardiff Bay’s most iconic landmarks from a truly unique perspective. Best of luck to all involved for a safe and successful race.”

Entries for the new Legend distance as well as all other Cardiff Triathlon events, including the Try a Tri Swim are now open. To enter, or to find out more about the weekend, visit alwaysaimhighevents.com

Aquathlon added to the programme of the Extremadura Cross Triathlon World Championships

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The Spanish complex of El Anillo, in Extremadura (Spain) will host the 2021 World Triathlon Aquathlon World Championships in October, along with the World Triathlon Cross Triathlon World Championships that will take place the same weekend in the same location. World Champions in all categories, including age-group events, will be crowned on 30-31 October.

The World Triathlon Aquathlon Championships and the World Triathlon Cross Championship have been part of the World Triathlon Multisport Festival for the past five years and were planned to take place in Almere this year but, due to the current travel restrictions in the Netherlands, the organisers were only able to go ahead with the Long Distance and Aquabike events.

With the 2021 World Triathlon Duathlon World Championships taking place also in Spain, in Aviles, the following week (6-7 November), it offers a great opportunity for elite and age-group athletes to compete at three world championship events fewer than 10 days apart all within the same country.

“It is fantastic news that the Aquathlon World Championships will also be held in Extremadura as it adds to the true spirit of these competitions: the concept of the Multisport Championship Festival. Having three World Championships in Spain in two weeks brings a great opportunity to athletes from all around the world to discover these two regions of Spain, Extremadura and Aviles, with multiple options for easily connecting both cities”, explained World Triathlon President and IOC Member, Marisol Casado.

The events in El Anillo of Extremadura, which will also host the Spanish Multisport Championships that same weekend, will bring together more than 1500 participants, with Elite, Junior and Age-Group competitions taking place in both Cross Triathlon and Aquathlon.

The waters of Gabriel y Galán reservoir will be the perfect scenario for the swimming sections of both events, with the running and cycling paths of El Anillo and its surroundings providing a great course for the running and cycling segments.

World Triathlon wants to thank the organisers and the Spanish Triathlon Federation for being able to step up once again and put in place another world-class event in such a short period of time after Almere announced that they could not host the Aquathlon, Duathlon and Cross Triathlon World Championships this year.

All of the events will be run under strict COVD guidelines approved by the Spanish Federation and World Triathlon, and more details of the calendar, distances and registration process will be announced in the next weeks.

British Cycling plots path to Paris following record-breaking Tokyo games

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British Cycling has published its strategy to 2024 following record-breaking success at the Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games, supporting the organisation to grow the sport and enable more people within its communities to discover cycling.

With a focused purpose to Lead our sport, inspire our communities, the strategy will guide the organisation’s work through to the Paris 2024 Olympic and Paralympic Games, while supporting the development of the sport’s grassroots. Across seven priority areas, key targets include:

  • Growing the organisation’s membership to 250,000
  • Increasing by 20% the number of cycling clubs and groups and the young people riding in them.
  • Creation of a new development plan to support non-Olympic and Paralympic disciplines.
  • Broadening the range of commercial partners working with British Cycling.
  • Increasing representation of disabled people, people from diverse ethnic communities, LGBTQ+ people and people from lower income households within cycling.

Great Britain topped the cycling medal table at both the Olympic and Paralympic Games this summer, surpassing the total number of medals won at each of London 2012 and Rio 2016, while ground-breaking successes in mountain biking, BMX and BMX freestyle highlighted the team’s breadth of talent across the disciplines.

In tandem with this success, over recent years the organisation surpassed its ambitious target to get one million more women cycling, while its societal partnership with HSBC UK inspired two million more to get on their bikes. Growing from 14,000 at the turn of the millennium to almost 150,000 today, the organisation continues to work tirelessly for its members, with advocates including Policy Adviser Chris Boardman and Policy Advocate Dame Sarah Storey leading the charge for safer roads for cycling.

British Cycling’s independent chair, Frank Slevin, said: “It brings me great pride to present a new purpose and strategy for British Cycling today, guiding our path to Paris and a vibrant, prosperous future for our organisation.

“Since beginning my tenure as Independent Chair in January 2018 we have introduced considerable changes to the ways in which we govern our sport and activities, welcomed new members to our Executive Leadership Team and board of directors, and made great strides towards strengthening our diversity and connection with the grassroots of the sport.

“With our new strategy in place we now have an excellent platform to build from, and I and the Board look forward to supporting the organisation and its leadership team in bringing it to fruition.”

The new strategy will build on the foundational work already undertaken over the past 12 months, through the publication of long-term plans to support the development and growth of each of the seven cycling disciplines, and the organisation’s first holistic strategy for equality, diversity and inclusion.

After nine months as CEO of British Cycling, Brian Facer is now driving a new course for the organisation towards Paris and beyond. He said: “As another incredible summer of cycling draws to a close, today I’m delighted to present a new purpose, strategy and vision for British Cycling, with the ambition of extending our proud history of medal success, renewing our commitment to the grassroots of the sport and making our organisation more relevant, inclusive and familiar to Britain’s communities than ever before.

“Whether through the stand-out successes we’ve seen in BMX, freestyle and mountain biking, our ground-breaking partnerships or our commitment to embedding diversity in everything we do, we’ve already taken great strides towards becoming a more forward-looking, dynamic and welcoming governing body. We will always take pride in leading our sport by nurturing the good health of each of our disciplines, and I now truly believe we are on the cusp of an exciting new era not just for British Cycling but for everybody who rides a bike.

“This strategy is the product of more than 10,000 written submissions and over 80 roundtable discussions, and we’re incredibly thankful to all those who have contributed, and to our members, volunteers, partners and funders for their vital and ongoing support.”

You can read the strategy here.

Product Review: Granite stash tools

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As more of us make the move away from riding packs and bum bags, the market continues to grow with solutions to aid in moving all our essentials onto or into the spare space on our frames.

Granite are no exception and have gone full speed in developing their 3-piece set of appropriately named Stash Tools. The set includes a steerer tube installed multi tool (I have the RCX model), bar end installed chain breaker and tubeless tyre plugs.

Granite are no strangers to the channel as I really liked their frame strap back in the group test at the start of the year but how do their tools stack up?

First impressions

Straight out of the box you know you’re getting quality with granite, the orange (also available in black) anodised parts have a good weight about them, they all fold and fit together as they should and the hex and torx bits are accurately cut.

The RCX multi tool (£49.95) includes hex tools in 2, 2.5, 3, 4, 5, 6 a T25 and flathead screwdriver. As a nice addition you also get a spoke key in size 0, 1, 2, 3 and a valve core removing tool held to the side with magnets.

The chain tool (£23.95) is driven by the hex keeping it nice and compact. It has storage space for a quick link and has a handle with 2 different positions to allow storage in your bars*.

Finally, Granite’s tyre plug kit (£19.96) includes reamer, tyre fork and 4 tyre plugs to get you started*.

The 3 tools, complete with end plugs and fittings came in at 191g, 34g less than my usual multi tool with the same functions and plug kit.

*chain tool and plug kit also comes with a 30mm and 22mm cap to allow installation with open end or lock-on grips.

Fitting

Fitting the chain tool and plug kit into the end of my Nukeproof bars was easy. Remove grips (DMR Deathgrips and Burgtec Bartender Pro), push tool in, tighten hex bold to expend the gromet, put grips back on and tighten lock ring – job done.

The RCX multi tool wasn’t much more challenging. Remove stem top cap, knock star nut out the bottom of fork steerer; then using the storage sleeve put in the expanding washer and tighten up to expand.

Granite provide clear instructions and the tools required to carry out the job however be careful, the expanding washer is incredibly easy to over tighten!

All in, the job took 10 minutes with no modifications made to steerer tube or bars, a big bonus and leaving everything completely reversable.

On the trail

Having your multi tool so easily accessible is a no brainer for me. Those little adjustments you usually ignore are a 2 second job and the Granite multi tool is bang on the money for most jobs. The bits are quite short but I’ve adjusted callipers, removed pads, tweaked the saddle etc with no issues at all.

The only mishap I’ve had; on one of the first rides the expanding washer worked its way loose leaving the whole thing rattling in the steerer tube. I ended up picking up a new star nut and using this instead of the washer. An easy enough fix to do with a bit of measuring and one that worked a dream.

We seem to have had a spate of punctures recently, so the plug tool has been used frequently. It’s easy to remove once the grips off, the reamer works, and the plugs stay in place. The storage tube doesn’t rattle in the bars and after 5 months hasn’t seized shut or let any moisture in. The ‘bacon strips’ are nice a sticky and bond to the tyre well creating and airtight seal.

Finally, as with the other tools the chain splitter just works. You unscrew the handle from the storage position and into the correct position to hold, grab your multi tool to turn the pin and use like any other chain splitter. Having the quick link storage is a nice touch as well. After a month or so the handle did work its way loose from the storage position leaving it rattling through the bars but a little thread tape has kept it in place since. I’ve taken it out a few times just to check it and its all still moving, dry and ready for action.

Final thoughts

There isn’t much to say here. Yes the tools can be a little slow to get out from under lock on grips but they are secure, more than compete with the competition and I really like them!

The Stash tools work well, are tidy and are there when you need them. They have stood up to 5 months of constant use without much of a mark and will, I’m sure continue to do this.

At time of writing all 3 parts of Granites stash kit can be had for around £80 which stacks up with the competition all in.

It would be nice if Granite made the sleeves available as an additional purchase for multiple bikes but either way these will certainly be my go-to carry tools from now on.

Evie Richards makes history with mountain biking world title

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Evie tackling a downhill on her bike
Evie Richards makes history to become the first British woman to win the elite women’s cross-country race at the UCI Mountain Bike World Championships in 2021

Evie Richards made history on the slopes in Val di Sole, Italy as she became the first British woman to win the elite women’s cross-country race at the UCI Mountain Bike World Championships.

Richards paced herself brilliantly, and once in the lead halfway through the second lap, she ensured there was enough time between her and the rest of the field, relentlessly increasing her advantage throughout the next three and half laps to the finish line.

“I didn’t think I’d ever be good enough to win a race like this – I’m so shocked, I cannot believe it!” said Richard after the race.

“With Covid it’s been really hard, and I’ve tried to stay positive – the last three weeks at home (after the Tokyo 2020 Olympic games) have been amazing. I’ve trained so hard.

“I say when I’m happy I race well, and I truly have been happy the last three weeks at home and I think that shows today.”

The elite women’s race showed great promise from the start with a host of strong athletes in contention for the win. Great Britain held high hopes with Evie Richards, who narrowly missed out on a Short Track gold medal to Sina Frei (Switzerland) on Thursday in Val di Sole.

Starting on the second row, Richards made light work of the start loop, finding gaps to the front of the bunch ensuring she entered the start of lap one in third place. Lap one would see Pauline Ferrand Prevot (France) and Jolanda Neff (Switzerland) create some distance to the rest of the bunch as Evie worked hard alongside Frei to pull them back. Only one lap later, Neff had dropped back to fifth and Richards was up to second on her own chasing down Ferrand Prevot, 31 seconds ahead.

Richards fought hard through the second lap, catching Ferrand Prevot and leading the French rider over the line as they started lap three together. Not content on giving Ferrand Prevot an easy ride to the finish, Richards piled on the pressure across the course in both the uphill and downhill sections.

From then on in Richards never looked back, using every ounce of energy she had to ride away from a chasing group, gaining a handful of seconds every lap. On the finish line she would finish over one minute ahead of Anne Terpstra (Netherlands).

Richards spoke to RedBull TV after the race, saying: “I can’t believe it I’m really shocked. I didn’t have confidence going into this race, but the race plan was to have confidence. I said to you (Red Bull TV) I will have a time to shine – but obviously today was my time to shine. I’m just so shocked, I didn’t think I’d be able to do that today.”

Fellow British riders, Isla Short and Annie Last rode fantastic races, Short in particularly chasing down the front group from the off during the start loop, and showed consistency throughout the race to gain places and keep her lap times smooth, finishing in 14th. Last would follow home in 31st respectively.

Men U23 race

A good start for the British trio saw them all occupying places at the front of the race, with both Cameron Orr and Charlie Aldridge getting a good start from row two on the grid.

An early split in the men’s race at the start of lap one meant an uphill battle for Orr, with six riders ahead of the British rider and Luca Schaetti (Switzerland) going clear. Orr and Schaetti would cross the line starting lap two in seventh and eighth and 20 seconds down, however by the first intermediate split on lap two, Orr was down in 16th after an unfortunate crash.

This threw Orr, at the same split, into a group of nine riders all separated by just nine seconds; the group also included Aldridge who was placed 19th and Harry Birchill 20th, meaning all British riders occupied a top-20 position for the first time during the race.

By the start of lap three, Orr was down to 29th having lost a further minute as he battled to regain composure after his crash. Not one to be let the race get away from him, two laps later he was back up in 18th with teammate Aldridge ahead of him in 15th to chase as they raced into the final lap. Birchill maintained his 20th place into the final lap just seven seconds behind Orr.

A late charge in the final lap saw Charlie Aldridge gain three places and finish the highest placed British rider in 12th, followed home by Cameron Orr in 16th narrowly missing out on a top-15 finish, sprinting for the line against Riley Amos (USA). Harry Birchill also showed fantastic form in the final lap to finish 19th and make sure it was a top-20 finish for all.

Women U23 Race

A blistering start to the day saw Hattie Harnden and Anna Kay take on four laps of the four-kilometre course in Val di Sole, Italy.

A bunched start by the British duo saw them placed 19th and 21st coming out of the start loop as they jostled for position. By the intermediate split on lap one, Harnden was up to 16th and began her charge up through the field starting lap two in 11th place.

Kay wasn’t as lucky dropping back to 26th position at the first intermediate lap split, however worked hard to get back into contention in the opening lap.

Once the race reached the start of the second lap, Anna Kay raced through nearly every lap split in 22nd, chasing Matylda Szcecinska (Poland). Kay’s gap to Szcecinska was just three seconds by the start of the last lap, however, she could not reel in the Polish rider and maintained her 22nd place all the way to the finish line.

Harden started lap three in the company of Raquel Queiros (Portugal), Rebekka Estermann (Switzerland) and Emeline Detilleux (Belgium) as they jostled over the 11th place position and tried to chase down a top-10 finish.

By the start of lap four they had done just that reeling back in Jacqueline Schneebeli (Switzerland), meaning the group of five riders entered the final lap within eight seconds of each other. Harnden would give it her all in the final lap and held on for 14th place.

Race-favourite Mona Mitterwalner (Austria) – winner of every under-23 women’s race at the UCI Mountain Bike World Cup series this year – would finish the eventual winner in Italy, over two minutes ahead of her compatriot Laura Stigger in second.

Susana Rodriguez: from the cover of Time to the top of the Tokyo 2020 podium

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Susana Rodriguez crossing the finish line with her guide Sara Loehr
Susana Rodriguez crossing the finish line with her guide Sara Loehr

Back in Rio 2016, Spanish young doctor and blind para triathlete Susana Rodriguez crossed the finish line in 5th place, and promised herself that she will do better in Tokyo. And today she delivered. Only a month after making it to the front cover of Time magazine for her dual work as a professional athlete preparing to compete in two events -para triathlon and para athletics- in Tokyo and fighting the pandemic at the hospital where she works, Rodriguez and her guide Sara Loehr just became the Tokyo 2020 PTVI Paralympic champion. Italian Anna Barbaro (and guide Charlotte Bonin) finished second and Annouk Curzillat and guide Celine Busrez (France) in third place.

Five years after we saw one of the most dramatic finishes ever in the PTVI women’s race in Rio 2016 -and with Katie Kelly claiming then the gold medal-, 12 blind athletes toed the start line in Tokyo, one of the more competitive fields ever but also one f the most uncertain one, considering the impact that Covid has had on many athletes and on their preparations for the Paralympic Games. Many of them have not competed at the highest level since February 2020, or have had difficulties to properly train, so there could be surprises especially considering the heat conditions and the non-wetsuit swim provisions for the races this weekend.

And Spaniard Suusana Rodriguez decided from the first minute that she didn’t want any surprises. She has shown extraordinary performances since 2019 when she won the Yokohama WPS event, and it has been all wins for her since then, except for a DNF in Funchal 2019. But with a new guide in Tokyo, she didn’t want to leave any chances to he rivals.

Rodriguez led the swim from the beginning, with only Canada’s Jessica Tuomela behind her. Toumela has had a tremendous progress in the last couple of years and managed to keep up with the pace of Rodriguez in the swim and also on the bike, always less than a minute behind her. But a slow second transition gave all hopes to the athletes behind, Anna Barbaro, Annouk Curzillat and Allison Peasgood (GBR) to start the chase.

While Rodriguez ride and then run completely solo to claim the victory stopping the clock on 01:07:15, behind her Barbaro proved again to be a top athlete at key races and claimed silver, the best result of her career so far. An incredible last kilometer gave Curzillat the bronze medal despite the efforts of Peasgood and her guide Nikki Barlett, who sprinted all along the blue carpet to finish in the disappointing fourth place.

“In the world of sports, this means everything. We can do really good races, we can win world championships and each race has its own history. But there is nothing as big as the Paralympics. Since I was a kid and I realised I had a disability I wanted to go to the Paralympics,” said Rodriguez.

“I went to the Paralympics in Rio and finished fifth and promised myself I wanted a new opportunity. For that opportunity I needed to work very hard to get better in the three events of triathlon. This is what I have been doing in the lead-up to these Games and I think I have done my homework. Today we executed the plan to perfection.”

Toumela and guide Marianne Hogan closed the top five, while Rio 2016 gold medallist Katie Kelly and guide Briarna Silk finished in 6th place.

Results: PTVI Women

1. Susana Rodriguez B1, ESP, 01:07:15

2. Anna Barbaro B1, ITA, 01:11:11

3. Annouck Curzillat B1, FRA, 01:11:45

4. Alison Peasgood B2, GBR, 01:11:47

5. Jessica Tuomela B1, CAN, 01:12:53

Back for 2021 – The Conwy Marathon with new 10mile and 20mile routes added!

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Returning this autumn after 2019’s huge success is the Conwy Marathon, offering runners stunning scenery and breath-taking views of the North Wales coastline.

This year, the Always Aim High Events team is expecting even more runners to take the opportunity to put themselves against a route that takes them around the awe-inspiring Great Orme, Conwy Castle World Heritage Site, out to the beautiful Colwyn Bay Promenade before doubling back along the stunning beachfront to finishing in Llandudno. Brand new for 2021 are a 10 mile and 20 mile event that makes the Conwy Marathon perfect for runners’ training schedules. Take a look at the full route here.

Always Aim High Events are also incredibly proud that the 2021 Conwy Marathon has been selected to feature in the North Wales Regional Athletics Council Road Running Championships. Full details of eligibility can be found here.

Always Aim High Events’ Managing Director Tim Lloyd said: “We’re so happy to bring the Conwy Marathon back to Llandudno after a great first year in 2019. It’s been a really popular addition to our calendar and this year we’ve added the 10miler & 20miler distances too. We’re looking forward to staging this year’s event, especially as now we’ve been awarded the NWRAC Regional Championship for the Marathon race. Top-level athletes from all over the region will be coming down to take part, we can’t wait!

“The 10 & 20 Milers will be perfect for runners building up or tapering before other late season events.

“The event, supported by Conwy Council, will be one of Wales newest road marathons and will be marketed to runners from all over the UK and beyond. The race will hope to attract visitors to this beautiful part of Wales from afar, this is crucial in our continued drive in supporting the local economy and local communities.”

Entries for the 2021 Conwy Marathon taking place on Sunday 26th September are now open. Head over to www.alwaysaimhighevents.com to book your place.

From ruptured plantar fascia to pain-free running

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“I am Dr Susie Cooper MBBS, MRCP, MRCGP, BSc(hons), PgDip (SEM). GP and Rheumatologist with a post graduate Diploma in Sports and Exercise Medicine, I’m also a 51 year old long distance runner that completely ruptured my plantar fascia in the left foot a couple of years ago.

“I was told by an orthopaedic foot surgeon that I should ‘change my sport’, but after 6 months of no running I slowly got back to it. However, it wasn’t until I tried the Barefoot Science insole system one year later that I started to be able to run better and pain free.”

Learn more here

NHS… are you ready?

“As a medical practitioner, I would like to see more of this system tested in the NHS, and where appropriate, used by musculoskeletal and orthopaedic doctors and physiotherapists. I think Barefoot Science insoles have a role to play in injury recovery, sports performance, and for improving balance and mobility in all age groups. The system certainly gave me more benefit than my expensive ‘custom made’ orthotics a few years before!”

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