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Tuesday, 26 July 2011

Down-Tow-Up-Flow Half marathon and Downland Challenge now live

After a wonderful sunny Sundays running the race galleries for the following races are now live and online, ready for browsing and buying:

The Purple Patch Down-tow-Up-Flow Half Marathon :
And you can rate it on Runners world here

The Haywards Heath Harriers Downland Challenge 5mile and 30mile ultra :

Links to the race websites and their results can be found on the respective gallery pages.
As a quick headline link - if you enjoyed any of your running this weekend then click here to Enter the Purple Patch Maidenhead Half Marathon on September the 4th, knowing the route and the area I will vouch that it's going to be a great race.

The Hills (The Beacon to be specific) are alive with the...
If you don't know the Downland challenges it's a 5 mile and also an Ultra race. The 5 mile race goes straight up the hill (the race HQ is at the foot of the escarpment - you get a feel for the climb from these pictures) to the Jack and Jill windmills, along a bit, then back down, back up, and then return along the top to fall back down the hill to the finish. So that's two massive climbs and two hard descents. Not for the fainthearted it's been on the Sussex Grand Pris list for a few years, but not this year so entries were understandably down a bit. Meanwhile the Ultra goes off up the hill, and then along quite a bit (well for 15 miles, until you turn around and come back) so generally off over the Beacon, towards Lewes, but follow the SDW and you eventually get to the turn near Southease, have a cup of water and come back ! Simples...and perfect weather if you enjoy fantastic views for miles across Sussex.
Another great race put on by the Haywards Heath Harriers - just look at the stunning views...

Eets nice yes ? What a view !

Shotguns ready, Pull. Mr Bolt should upgrade, arrows are so last year.

Hey, what's up ? It's downhill from here - to the finish, windmills in the background.
 The Purple Patch Runners Down-Tow-Up-Flow Half Marathon is run between Marlow (rugby club) and Eton (yes the playing fields) along the banks of the River Thames. It alternates in direction each year, and this year was downhill all the way. With perfect weather, either running along a river, (or up a hill in Sussex) would only have been bettered by sitting by the river and having a picnic.

If you don't fancy hills, then the DTUF Half was quite scenic, and this chap Rupert Shute from Reading Road Runners took the new course record in 1:17:45

The A380 of in-race airplanes

Synchronised Flying, you can see the early route in the distance along the bank

Smiling as they go past the boats at the marina

Pink Laydee

Far too happy Sisters after 13 miles along a tow path - making a great finishing shot
So that's a very well done to everyone at Purple Patch Running some fantastic marshalling who had to put up with some very testing locals at times, traffic pinch points, and remaining alarmingly enthusiastic for over 3 hours. The two lovely ladies I met at Bourne End marina couldn't have been more helpful and for that I thank them. Also many thanks to the marshal at the top end of the finish field who let me drive in without delay - I made it to the finish with about 5 seconds spare before the winner came in - (no thanks to the peloton of cyclists on the Cookham lane doing 10 miles an hour that lost me 10 minutes) - and got the shot.Yaay !
Rupert Shute on his way in for victory and the new record
 I think I'm looking forwards to the next Purple Patch Running event - the inaugural Maidenhead Half Marathon on September the 4th. That gives you about 6 weeks to get training through the school summer holidays to get ready.

Other stuff:

Talking of quests, I had an email the other day from a "bit of a blagger". They and the club they claimed to represent will remain nameless (but not shameless), but suffice to say - please don't email me asking for a free team photo (which we didn't take), claiming everyone had bought their images (when nobody had). Additionally, apart from "please don't lie to me", I will add "please don't steal my images", because the person in question had right clicked (i.e. taken copies) on 14 ex 24 images we had taken of him. It shouldn't come as a shock to know we record that stuff. The odd right click by mistake can happen - but 14 times - I don't think so.

Obviously wise people like yourself know that taking copies of images - even with the watermark on them - is stealing. Call it shoplifting if you like, and just like traditional shoplifting (which is theft) - just because you can do it - doesn't mean you are morally obliged to do it.

As I explained to the blagger/thief/shoplifter our gallery hosting, fuel, equipment, maintenance, salaries, cataloguing, computers, software, transaction fees, marketing etc all cost money, and in all this I work for free late into the night and haven't had a holiday in about 5 years, but before I start to sound like Alan Sugar, please don't try and BS me. For what is now priced at under a fiver for a lifetimes memory - I think that's good value that shouldn't be stolen.

Did you know we raised over £2000 for race charities in the past 12 months alone, and your help for us to do that is appreciated by many people who benefit directly from the money raised through photo sales, so right-clickers out there - you're doubly bad people, you're not just stealing the food from my childrens mouths...

Clearly people like their photos - our free download service is proof of that -  but what should I do with right-clickers ? Answers please !! (email me - ). I'm up for anything from deletion to naming, but can you help me by suggesting something else I can do in between to convert them to customers ?  Let me know ! Help me to make things better for everyone ! Thank you.

In other news - the Milland Valley Trail (Half marathon) on August the 7th could probably do with your last minute entry before Friday. Get in there - and see what route wizardry Tom has been up to.

Until next time, enjoy the nice gap in the weather - my tomatoes are coming on a treat. Ideas for a daughters 4th birthday present are also welcomed.


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