Wednesday saw a much improved turnout for the final installment of the 3 race mob match series against Collingwood and Sutton with 23 members turning out to run and 63 in total. Following the low turn out from the first two legs we always had a mountain to climb in terms of the overall standning but we certainly gave it our best shot and I am happy to say that we won convincingly on the night but unfortunately it wasn’t enough to pull back the points difference in the overall standnings.
Having spent a lot of time deliberating on the course we finally settled on start / finish in Green Lane recreation ground with 2 laps of the Hogsmill Open space and a small loop on the opposite side up to the railway lines. The final course measurement after a small tweak as suggested by Dave Wilson to avoid a potential runner versus bicycle collision was by my reckoning just short of 4.4 miles. The good thing in my opinion about this course was that as the runners came down the cycle path from Green Lane towards the Hogsmill open space those spectating had only a short walk to support the runners thorughout the race as they came along or crossed the cycle path mid race before heading back into the rec for the finish. I would like to thank Grant Davison for heading down early to help set up and mark the course much to the exxcitement of the local kids who I was worried might go round after us and move all the markers but thankfully they had the good sense not to.
Danny Norman led the field right from the off and looked like a man on a mission as he flew round Green Lane Rec like he had a swarm of hornets chasing him. Being the first time we had hosted a leg of this mob match the course was untested in race conditions but the lap around the park spread the field out nicely before the left turn by the finish line to head across to the park gates where I didn’t see to many problems with runners exiting the park. From my vantage point back in the field it looked like there were plenty of 26.2 vests at the head of the field and the prospect of some good battles was in the offing which looking at the results was certainly the case. The feedback from Collingwood and Sutton was really good and they have passed thier thanks along to our team of marshals who as always did a fantastic job ensurng runner safety and that everyone went the right way.
Danny Norman appeared to lead from start to finish and crossed the finish line with an impressive lead of 1:35 ahead of second placed Sutton runner David Williams. Jack Holland took third spot 17 seconds behind and was followed by a flurry of Red, White & Blue with 9 of us finishing in the top 20.
There was a number of good tussles between club members on the night starting with Joe Chang and Katherine Wilson with Joe crossing the line a mere 1 second ahead of Katherine (Must try harder next time Katherine) Steve Ramek and Jason Blair likewise had a good battle with only 2 seconds seperating them with Steve besting Jason and Mustafa Fawzy and David Pimm were not too far behind with Mustafa pipping David by only 4 seconds. Kevin Parker and Richard Goulder didn’t appear to fancy a head to head on the night with Kevin finishing with a good gap between them, but I suspect Richard was saving himself for this weekends NDW pacing expedition with Ann Bath so we’ll let him off this once. Chris Wilson and John Sweeney were the next pair to battle through with Chris managing a 12 second gap between them.
Slightly further back Matthew Pritchard was doing his best to see off a challenge from a bunch of Sutton runners and managed to keep them all at bay with Alan Collis who flew past me huffing and puffing early on finishing in the middle of that Sutton pack.
Tessa Lambert, a recent arrival at the club ran a very strong race and is certainly someone to watch in the future finishing in just outside the 34 minute mark and certainly appeared to enjoy the evening. Just behind Tessa, in form Kevin Furlong was busy hunting me down as he said afterwards he could see a blue top in front of him but didn’t realise it was me which was just as well as he would have probably tried harder had he of known. That said Kevin appeared to be very happy with the fact he had beaten Jonathon Wilson by quite a good margin, I can only assume the student lifestyle has not agreed with Jonathon’s running probably the result of too much beer and takeaways.
Bringing up the rear for 26.2 finishing outside of the scroing were Peter Tozer, Mike Gray, Laura (I can’t stop smiling) Perry and Sue Esslemont.
With Sutton turning out with 18 runners there were plenty of points on offer which meant that despite not scoring low enough to overcome the points difference of 541 after the second leg we did manage to win the night with a clear points advantage of 195 points on Sutton and 249 on Collingwod, just image how we could have done had we of had similar performances and a better turn out in the first two legs.
I would like to extend a huge thank you to our excellent team of volunteers especially to and to Natalie and Sam for collecting the Fish & Chips afterwards and well done to everyone who ran.
Results as follows:
Overall Standings for the series
|1st Leg||2nd leg||3rd Leg||Total|