CHARD Road Runners were out local and local-ish this weekend, with the first event being The Humdinger Half Marathon in Taunton on Sunday.

Seven club members lined up for the Humdinger Half, one of the toughest road races in the area.

With the race being the first in the Chard Road Runners Championship series, it was every runner for his- or herself.

Setting off from Wellsprings Leisure Centre were Matt Baker, Liam Whyte, Philip Goodridge-Reynolds, Helen Baxter, Marie Culverwell, Jacqui Allen and Lizzie Smith.

All found good pace over the flattish first mile, before the first of the significant hills that take runners up towards the Quantock Hills.

Baker soon started to show some early pace and with both Goodridge-Reynolds and Whyte staying on his heels the Championship points were not going to be easily earned.

Baxter took up the early lead among the CRRs women over the first mile but on going into the hill Culverwell and Allen stepped forward to take on the battle for points, with Smith pressing.

At the halfway point Whyte had pulled ahead of Goodridge-Reynolds and Baker as the course started to head back towards Cheddon.

The four female runners were going through a good period of yo-yoing, with Baxter overtaking on the downs and Culverwell and Allen overtaking on the ups.

Eight miles in, most of the hills were out of the way, and Baxter’s stamina gave her the edge.

As the runners rounded the final stretch, it was Whyte who crossed firsts for the Road Runners in 1h 41m 17s, with Goodridge-Reynolds crossing in 1:56:47 and Baker in 2:04:10.

Baxter was the club’s first woman home in 2:13:56, with Culverwell in 2:16:00, Jacqui Allen 2:18:31 and Smith 2:30:17.

The next race for Chard Road Runners had Wayne Loveridge heading down to Dorset for the Portland Coastal Multi-Terrain Half Marathon.

With the blustery conditions this race full of top distance runners was always going to be a challenge.

A mass of sprinting runners headed towards Portland with a first mile of flat road tapering to a steep uphill off-road section to the top of the island.

Loveridge was in the top five as they rounded the prison boundary and started along the more technical coastal path section on towards the lighthouse.

With the frontrunners challenging along the narrow paths, Loveridge stayed strong; as the race rounded the lighthouse and the path opened up to the last of the long uphill sections Loveridge took his opportunity to pull well ahead of the field.

Coming off Portland down the steep paths saw runners going all out, and with the wind now gusting behind them the race levelled out onto the tarmac causeway.

Loveridge crossed the line in a fantastic first place in a time of 1:33:17.