Fundraisers were champing at the bit to run in horseless steeplechase at Olympic course (From This Is Wiltshire)
Fundraisers were champing at the bit to run in horseless steeplechase at Olympic course
JUMP TO IT: David Armitage and Sarah Armitage, both from Marlborough, take part in the Horseless Steeplechase in aid of Wiltshire Air Ambulance and the Greatwood charity
There was neigh stopping runners of the two legged variety as they raced across the Barbury Inter-national Trials course at Rockley on Sunday.
They were tackling the same jumps that in July members of the British equestrian team tackled as they prepared for the Olympics.
Runners of the human kind gathered early at Nigel Bunter’s Barbury Estate, where he made the trials course available to Marlbor-ough and Swindon Phoenix Rotary Clubs for their first ever horseless race.
Marlborough Rotarian Gerry Hooper said: “This time there were no horses to be seen and it was human runners scrambling over the jumps and through the water pools.
“This was a grand charity running event staged in Barbury’s beautiful surroundings, with the help and kind co-operation of Nigel Bunter, the owner of the estate.
“The estate team provided help in laying out the jumps and preparing the course for the runners. “The two rotary clubs brought along all the facilities for a great day out, with food and drink to sustain the runners and their families, and a commentary team to entertain not only the spectators, but the runners as they jumped, scrambled, climbed and dragged themselves over the jumps.”
Charities supported by the event were Wiltshire Air Ambulance and Greatwood at Clench Common, where disadvantaged children work with retired racehorses.
Runners came from all over Wiltshire and the winner of the two-and-a-half mile race, creating a course record of 15 minutes 56 seconds, was Jacob Kanusberg.
Close behind came the winner of the women’s race, Sarah Armitage, in 19 minutes 24 seconds, who was delighted to have won because on her 40th birthday, and she had been allocated the race number 40.
A second race was twice round the course totalling five miles with 34 jumps to be clambered over. The men’s winner was Chris Stuart in 26 minutes, six seconds and the women’s winner was Rowena Harwar in 35 minutes, one second.
All contestants had a special souvenir medal minted for the occasion.
Marlborough Rotary president Howard Small said: “With so much genuine enthusiasm for this event, we hope to run it again next year and generate even more money for these two Wiltshire charities.”