Former GB and international athlete David Webb, produced an outstanding performance to win the Mad Jacks 5 on Saturday (12 November) in 27:02. The Telford AC runner is coached by the well-respected Bud Baldaro, endurance/distance coach at the University of Birmingham. Baldaro has guided many athletes to success at European, World and Olympic competitions including Hannah England and Hattie Dean.
Paul Jones of Mercia Fell Runners was over a minute behind Webb, taking second place in 28:04. Matt Hall of host club Shrewsbury AC took third place in 28:56.
Shrewsbury AC claimed first and second places in the women’s race. Zoe Barber won in 34:07 followed by Anna Bartlett in 35:06. Amanda Davies of Cheadle RC took third place in 35:22.
Sarah Hall was the midpoint runner (178th out of 356 entries), finishing in 45:29.
This was the ninth year for this tough, off-road race that is a joint venture between Shrewsbury AC and The National Trust’s Attingham Park. The route is set within the grounds of this Grade I listed mansion and estate near Atcham in Shropshire with mud, fallen trees and stiles for runners to deal with.
There was a sting in the tail in the form of Mad Jacks pond, an 0.5-metre deep stretch of water that runners had to wade through. Depending upon the weather conditions this can be cold and muddy, adding an extra challenge to the event.
The name ‘Mad Jack’ refers to an 18th century Shropshire landowner called John Mytton who was famous for his eccentric behaviour. He was known as John ‘Mad Jack’ Mytton.
Photo courtesy of Tim Smith.