Hudson blows the competition away in popular Tarpley 20 race

UNDER WAY: The runners get started, with Saint Edmund Pacers (red and white vests) well represented
UNDER WAY: The runners get started, with Saint Edmund Pacers (red and white vests) well represented

Breaking his own record for the Tarpley 20 mile road race, David Hudson left the rest of the field in his wake at this year’s St Edmund Pacers’ annual bumper event.

The BRJ Huntingdon Club runner finished amazingly more than 10 minutes ahead of his nearest competitor after crossing the line in one hour 49 minutes and 22 seconds to defend his Tarpley title and pocket the £100 prize money on Sunday.

Felixstowe Road Runners’ Jason Duff took second place in the race which started and finished at Beyton’s school site, with a time of 2.00.37, while Steven Parry of Ipswich JAFFA was fourth home in 2.02.41, closely followed by Sudbury Jogger Kieran Hayles, 2.03.07.

First to finish from home team St Edmund Pacers, and seventh overall, was Nick Smith in 2.06.50. Newmarket Jogger Oliver Daykin, 2.12.51, was the first Male Under-21.

Leading home the women in the 20-mile race, Emma Attwood recorded a time of 2.22.59. First lady Pacer was Joanna Woledge, her time of 2.24.01 giving her first place in the FV40 (female veteran 40+) category.

Taking first place in Tarpley 10-mile race was Springfield Strider Mark Newton, in 54.19, with Framlingham Flyer Jim Last claiming second place with 55.49. Newmarket Jogger Mark Hayward clocked 58.14 and took fourth spot, while Andrew Bell of Haverhill RC finished sixth in 59.16.

Tom Kingsnorth, 1.02.29, was first of the 10-mile St Edmund Pacers’ contingent, with fellow Pacers Thomas White, 1.03.55, and Michael Falcone, 1.06.00 also figuring.

First of the women Pacers home, Angela Joiner-Handy’s time of 1.07.11 saw her winning the FV45 category. Gemma Porch, of Stowmarket Striders, claimed first in the V35 category with 1.07.33, while fellow Strider, Stephen Mead, won the MV65 sub-section in 1.10.06.

Once again the Tarpley races, organised by St Edmund Pacers and named in honour of one of the club’s earliest members, sold out long before the closing date.

With the timing of the events fitting in conveniently to Spring Marathon training schedules, it was perhaps no surprise that more than 300 runners entered and finished each of the races, which took in the undulating country lanes through the likes of Hesset, Gedding, and Drinkstone, and in the case of the 20-mile race, Thorpe Morieux and Brettenham.

Local girl guides and volunteers from the Parkinsons UK gave their time to make the day hugely popular and successful event.