A dozen Ryston Runners headed for the culture and climate of Florence in Italy at the weekend for a different marathon experience, and many were rewarded with PB times for their travelling troubles.
The most massive improvement notified was that of Emma Thompson, whose finishing time of 3:53 represented a whopping 51-minute improvement over her previous best. Also dipping under four hours, with a more modest time improvement but a much deserved achievement after doggedly plugging away at reducing her marathon time, Karen Smith recorded 3:57.
Fastest run by a Ryston Runner was the 3:02 clocked by Che Plant, with the Phils, Thompson and Twite, crossing the line seven minutes later, both on 3:09, then Martin Ive another three minutes later on 3:12.
Heather Beattie was the first Ryston woman home, in 3:22, before Lesley Robins, accompanied by Malcolm Tuff, cracked the 3:30 barrier with 3:29.
The third of the Thompson trio in the race, Paddy, clocked 3:35. Kelly De Gol, who a year ago was facing life with no more running due to a hip problem, clocked 4:14.
Jeff Reed ran himself into the club records once again at the Hatfield 5, setting a new club M70 best time of 41:27, and qualifying for a Silver Hare award in the process. Jeff was a little annoyed with himself for just missing out on the club Gold standard for the distance, although his time did place him second in the M70 category in the race overall.
Eammon McCusker ventured down to Suffolk for the Hadleigh 10. On an undulating and, at times, muddy course, he was a tad disappointed with 74:23 to finish 85/307 and second M60 by around two minutes. Fifth overall in the race at Hadleigh was second claim Ryston Runner Danny Rock who just broke the hour.