It was mission accomplished for Sam Pictor at the sold-out Dursley Dozen on Sunday (10 February). The pro triathlete showed his rope climbing skills at this challenging race from Dursley RC.
The 30th Dursley Dozen sold out weeks beforehand, a testament to its popularity and reputation as a tough, multi-terrain event with mud and hills. The best is saved to almost the last – a steep ascent in the woods known as ‘The Precipice’ involving ropes and steely-eyed determination.
Sam Pictor turned professional in 2018 and marked his first year with successes in half Ironman triathlons and a fourth place at the Bristol 10K. He is equally proficient as a runner, especially on trails and races featuring plenty of elevation. At 10.30am he and the rest of the field set off up a 200 metre stretch of road before heading into the woods and a haul up Gloucestershire's Stinchcombe Hill. They continued around the golf course, more ups and downs then three muddy miles through beech woods followed by a scramble up ‘The Precipice’.
Sam Pictor was out in front as he crossed the line in 1:20:39, more than three minutes ahead of James Everett of Dursley RC who was second in 1:23:51. Paul O’Mara of Tyne Bridge Harriers was third in 1:24:29.
Annabel Granger of Bristol and West AC was the fastest female in 1:36:00 and finished over 10 minutes in front of Niki Morgan of Chepstow Harriers who came second in 1:46:12. Zoe Lamerton of Dursley RC was third in 1:48:30.
There was a technical T-shirt for every finisher, post-race refreshments at the event HQ and the opportunity to rest battered legs.
Image courtesy of Debbie Seal.