2 Jun

Up And Around Cloud Cuckoo Land

Runners tackling Cleeve Cloud in the Cotswalds

What better way to start the month than with a hard, hilly midweek Cotwolds race that blew more than a few cobwebs away… Wednesday 1 June was the date for the annual Cleeve Cloud Cuckoo race, a challenging 5.5 miler that follows an undulating course around Cleeve Common.

This multi-terrain event starts and finishes at Cleeve Golf Club and goes along grass footpaths although there were a few gravel and stone sections to mix things up. The route also included sections of the Cotswold Way and a steep climb up Cleve Hill – also known as Cleeve Cloud, a fitting name for the highest point in the Cotswolds.
After surviving the hills, wind and Cleeve Cloud, runners had a fast downhill section for the all-important sprint finish. 
Ross Brackley won in a time of 30:14 with Douglas Wight of Almost Athletes close behind in 30:47. Anthony Bailey of Cheltenham & County Harriers came third in 30:52. 
Karlien Heyrman of CLC Striders won the women’s race in 37:51 beating teammate Karen Truslove into second place in 38:16. Eleanor Laney of Almost Athletes was third in a time of 40:45. 
There were good turnouts from Cheltenham & County Harriers, CLC Striders, Malvern Joggers, Bromsgrove and Redditch AC and several other local clubs. However, Cheltenham’s Almost Athletes had the biggest entry with 31 runners participating in a field of 152. 
Overall, Cheltenham & County Harriers ‘A’ and ‘B’ teams were first and second respectively with Almost Athletes ‘A’ team in third place.  
Photo courtesy of Almost Athletes.