December 10, 2006
Mike Cadman 54:11
Niki Archer 57:04
No. of finishers
Despite the cold, wet December weather, there were 15 per cent more runners tackling the annual Christmas Pudding 10-miler in Walsall than last year.
It might not be the most scenic of races, since the course follows an undulating loop along some of Walsall’s major and minor roads, but what it lacks in beauty it more than makes up for with Sneyd Striders’ great organisation.
Sneyd Community School, close to the start and finish, provided a warm race HQ with ample parking, changing facilities and baggage drop, as well as hearty refreshments and the opportunity to buy last-minute kit if you needed a few more layers as defence against the elements.
Icy rain, coupled with a few inclines, made the second half of the race tough until the final downhill mile. The roads weren’t closed but motorists managed to be patient – probably feeling sorry for the wind-buffeted runners – and the field used footpaths wherever possible.
The diligent marshals must have been feeling just as bedraggled as the runners but managed to encourage everyone and a few locals came out of their houses to support the race.
All finishers were rewarded with a small Christmas pudding – allegedly larger than last year’s, but it still prompted one runner to comment that the organisers were taking portion control to the extreme.