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Photo credit: Sarah Cooke.

RunUltra team member takes first place


By Alice Morrison

The RunUltra team is small but perfectly formed and includes runners of all abilities and levels. Sarah Cooke, who you will recognise as our running psychologist and ardent contributor to our forums, is one of the keenest runners on the team with a running streak that has lasted longer than many marriages.

This weekend she did us proud by coming first woman in the Calderdale Way Ultra (50.5 miles) with a time of 10:42:33. The race is varied with steep climbs, rocky sections, muddy sections. It’s notable for its beauty and the fact that the navigation is not easy.

First man in was Kevin Hoult with 07:57:54 – a great run by him over the rough ground.

Men’s top 3
Kevin Hoult: 07:57:54
Mariusz Felczerek: 09:35:32
Ioannis Polymenis: 09:42:19

Women’s top 3
Sarah Cooke: 10:42:33
Sharon Gayter: 12:17:51
Sarah Phillips: 14:21:13

When we stopped whooping in the office, we asked her how she felt about the win:

I’m astounded to get the win. I’ve never won anything before and consider myself a middle of the pack runner.

She also had some interesting thoughts about training (which may make our coach Andy Mouncey blanch):

I don’t really ‘train’ as such. I run a lot of miles because I enjoy it, but I’m pretty lazy at doing any kind of speed work. I have worked hard on improving my uphill hiking pace - I think learning to walk uphill with purpose is one of the best things you can do to improve your ultra times.

I try to find hills where I can and I just run in places I enjoy. I am not a fast runner, but I am good at not going out too fast and can be consistent over a long distance - 50 seems to be my distance. I ran NDW50 2 weeks ago, so was pleased with my recovery.”

Sarah’s next race is the Lakeland 5 Passes in two weeks. We’ll be rooting for her.

Congratulations, to Sarah and all the Calderdale Way runners!

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