News Report 30th November 2008


 A large group of local athletes and support crew recently made their way to the Canary Island of Lanzarote for the ninth consecutive year to take part in the four race series which makes up the 'La Santa Challenge'.


Six athletes completed the 51k four race event, made up of the 'Clasica de Lanzarote' 10k Road Race, 13k Volcanic Ridge Run, 5k Beach Run before the gruelling finale of the 21k 'Vuelta de Tinajo' Trans-Island Run. Leading home the six and improving his 2007 combined time by nearly 14 minutes was Frankie Vaughan of Ganllwyd, the Meirionnydd Running Club athlete completing the challenge in a pleasing time of 3hrs 47.47mins. His team-mate, Juliet Edwards of Dolgellau, led home the four strong local female contingent in a time of 4hrs 12.41mins whilst 1st time La Santa competitor, Debbie Evans of Tywyn, showed great aptitude to the event, the Bro Dysynni athlete completing the challenge in a time 4hrs 18.56mins to claim an outstanding 2nd place finish in the Female 50-54 Age Group Category. Injury free for the first time in living memory was Graeme Stringer of Llanelltyd, the Meirionnydd Running Club member claiming an overall time of 4hrs 38.10mins, just  enough to pip his Dolgellau-based team-mate, Margaret Roberts, who after running 2 of the 4 races in 2007, stepped up to complete the challenge this year in a time of 4hrs 40.17mins. Having competed in one race in 2007, another Meirionnydd Running Club athlete also took on the complete challenge in 2008, and Sioned Evans of Dolgellau can be well pleased with her efforts as she completed the tough challenge in a time of 5hrs 15.22mins.


Two Bro Dysynni athletes part-completed the challenge, one falling foul to injury after completing the first 3 races of the challenge. That athlete was Bob Chilton of Hermon, succumbing to a knee ligament injury after completing the first three races, a combined total of 28k, in a time of 2hrs 28.07mins. Meanwhile, Fairbourne-based athlete, Huw Harrison, used the wind to his assistance in the inaugural 10k event, delighted with his finishing time of 1hr 02.02mins, before choosing to relax by the swimming pool for the remainder of the week long stay.



 From left to right are Bob Chilton, Sioned Jones, Graeme Stringer, Huw Harrison, Margaret Roberts, Debbie Evans, Juliet Edwards & Frankie Vaughan.                      Also in picture is team mascot, Anna Roberts.'