The Thunder Run is an annual 24-hour race held in the third week of July that starts at 12pm of Saturday and finishes at 12pm on. Runners run laps of 10K around a course at Catton Park., Walton on Trent, Derbyshire, DE12 8LN. This is a race that can be run solo, in pairs or in teams of 3-5 or 5-8.
Some of our members have done this previously and it is a well-known and very well organised event. As it’s 24hours people camp overnight and the camp site actually opens on the Friday afternoon so we normally have a couple of team members who arrive, scope and mark out a decent plot and then set up camp.
The organisation includes, all day hot food and catering, a fully marshalled and signed course, on-course water stations, toilet facilities, hot showers, Free camping all weekend for runners and spectators and priority camping if you are a solo runner.
There were also sports masseurs on hand for everyone (there was no fixed charges but small donation accepted). For spectators and hungry runners the event caterers were positioned trackside, near the start, serving throughout the event.
The course at Catton Park is multi terrain. It is a 10km cross-country circuit through the picturesque Staffordshire countryside. The track twists and turns across the varied terrain so you run from woodlands and trails to steep hills and open fields.
This is a great race to do and a feeling of great achievement after the race. As a team of 5 – normally 5 laps of 10K so a decent amount of running.
We managed to get three teams together for this race as follows
Sinfin Thunderdogs – Shaun Cooper, Fordy, Jim, Chris and Jon
Sinfin Thundercats – Clare, Michael, Simon, Sharon and Matt O
Seifin (Yes you’ve read that right – Matt Harris’s fault) – Sam Lander, Matt H, Brian, Rob Humber, Woody
You wouldn’t believe the problems we have trying to get teams together for races but for an event like this we seem to, remarkably, manage it quite well.
This year the race started okay but then it started raining at around 4pm and basically didn’t stop (well noticeably didn’t stop) until an hour before the end of the race.
The course got worse and worse each lap – there was less of a course to run on and more of a quagmire of mud. There was not a lot of places to overtake slower runners as most of the course was on a camber. This meant you could get past people but getting back onto a running line was nigh on impossible.
Around 3am there were a lot of physically ‘broken’ people out there. The weather got to them, unable to get dry, running in the dark through the rain and mud with head torches on was not much fun so some of the teams gave up and went home. We all stayed till the end but even by this time some of our team members had had enough with some not continuing to run.
The course got worse and in the end the course ended up being a narrow trail through sloppy mud on either side in most places!!
It was a sigh of relief for all when this finally finished, everyone was exhausted but managed to celebrate with a well-deserved drink.
If you asked – would be do it again next year, after this years’ experience the answer if definitely NO. Of course, a couple of weeks after we’ve mostly changed our minds and all looking forward to next year’s event.
Sam Lander 10K Laps 43.12, 47.09, 48.16, 58.55
Matt Harris 10K Laps 56.59, 56.29, 1.00.55, 1.14.06
Brian Warner 10K Laps 46.57, 51.33, 58.34, 1.00.50, 1.09.12
Rob Humber 10K Laps 57.17, 59.23, 1.07.14, 1.13.55
Paul Wood 10K Laps 56.34, 59.42, 1.05.52, 1.23.01, 2.00.57
Shaun Cooper 10K Laps 40.35, 40.55, 41.25, 1.01.02, 3.39.16
Richard Ford 10K Laps 50.49, 50.03, 52.22, 1.00.20
Jim Richardson 10K Laps 52.37, 54.27, 1.01.01, 1.12.00, 1.20.34
Chris Morrison 10K Laps 45.02, 46.56, 50.44,
Jon Evans 10K Laps 44.24, 44.48, 50.42, 1.00.15
Clare Harrison 10K Laps 51.08, 51.18, 56.31, 59.43 1.04.29
Michael Collins 10K Laps 54.38, 56.19, 1.03.02, 1.13.58, 1.14.11
Simon Bray 10K Laps 59.39, 57.55, 59.24, 1.01.34, 1.00.19, 1.17.18
Sharon Collins 10K Laps 53.25, 56.22, 1.09.49, 1.05.38
Matthew Orr 10K Laps 47.04, 52.42, 1.01.45, 1.21.36
You may notice that some of the laps seems to have taken some time. The reason for this is that Shaun took a break after his lap, had a kip and then resumed his last lap.
Other laps could be longer as a runner would finish – come back to the tent and then the next person would go to the start and set off. EG – my last lap is shown as 1.09.12. I did the lap around 6 minutes quicker than this as Paul came back to the tent and then I set off.
Pictures – I would like to show you some of the mud and the atrocious conditions but unfortunately such pictures are in little supply – guess the photographers were put off by the rain! I can assure you that I only ran one dry lap and then it started to rain.