A nice low-key local race saw a plethora of pbs last Sunday. Those of us who had forgotten this race was rearranged from a snow-bound slot before Christmas were a bit surprised to see Santa on the lead bike, but apparently this is his quiet period, so he was happy to help. Conditions were perfect at the second time of asking, and a healthy 21 club runners pitched up to run.
Report, results and Grand Prix summary available below. Full Grand Prix tables updated, available here or from the downloads section.
This race is the last in a series of 3, and is normally held in December. As a result of it being rearranged, several runners had other plans but 4 of us were able to get a place – swings and roundabouts. It’s a fairly fast two-lap course, though with the uphill section being at the end of the lap it’s a case of ‘be strong’ if a pb time is in the offing, in case that last climb costs too much time. As it turned out, many of our runners were strong enough to take their previous best times out, bash them about a bit, and cross the line with them thoroughly well-beaten.
In no particular order, then, props to Richard Goulder for improving to the point where he’s chasing runners who had been used to being comfortably ahead of him. Zoe Ashcroft showed that an injured foot and a mild case of undertraineditis need not prevent a decent run, while Matthew Pritchard’s race pace now leaves training partners standing and the rest of us shooting off to Mothercare for a buggy to emulate his methods. Lindsay Baldwin had hoped beforehand to get in under the hour but was inside it by a mile, finishing with thanks for running buddy Derick Wilkie, but I hope she reserved some pride for her own strong running effort – the day after a 5k pb, no less. Kevin Stone continues to persuade his body that pain is temporary and no barrier to strong running, while the boy wonder Steve Watkins produced a strong run further up the field and Dominic ran alright too.
In the ladies’ race, Aimee Billington showed the benefit of cross training, coming back from a paucity of running (but plenty of spinning and swimming) to get close to her best. Zoe may not quite be at the same pace for now, but was comfortable in second place and looked to be easing off at the finish as the funnel got crowded and so probably has more to come. Sarah Pettefer and Ann Bath were both reasonably happy with their runs with upcoming marathons as their focus. Behind Lindsay were three more members, assuming we let babies in for free, with Jacqueline & baby Chang and Lizzie Wilson finishing some tough work uphill with grimace and smile.
In the men’s race, Dominic Collier of course ran better than alright, sewing up the Grand Prix Past the Post Championship and running a 5k pb on the way to improving his 10k best out of sight, for a well-deserved warm feeling. Steve Watkins had stayed with him for a while before settling in to a strong run and then providing vocal support to everyone else at the finish. Behind those two the gaps got gradually closer, and I could see but not catch Joe Chang who as well as scoring well in third, ended up surprised but pleased to pick up third senior male in the overall standings across the series. I try to specialise in beating the older generation in a sprint finish, but the bloke who passed me this time was only in his 50s, a bit younger than the people I usually pick on, and I couldn’t quite catch him. Jon Neal came in next, despite a lack of running he had kept me in sight throughout – I’ll wear baggier shorts next time and hope he drops back. Andrew Pengelly, needing mileage to keep the ultra darkside in check, built the 10k into the middle of an 18mile run, making this a tempo run for him. Behind Matthew Pritchard, Simon Gerrard looked strong while David Pimm is still troubled by injury following 6 weeks off but will see the end of the Paris marathon one way or another. Remember – walk pain-free before you can run so. Peter Tozer produced a strong age-graded score with a good run; just 27 seconds for a 70% age grading, Peter! Marathon-focussed Neil Sunderland was close enough to see Peter but not able to catch him whilst behind, Derick Wilkie scored well on age-grading whilst providing inspiration. Great to see people who train together able to motivate each other when racing. Finally, thanks to Binkie, running the route backwards in order to enjoy seeing people’s faces for a change, Luke and Jo for support.
Well done everyone. The next grand prix is the 5k parkrun, any event in April. Register at www.parkrun.com, and remember that you must wear your club vest and bring your barcode for your time to count, but you can run as many times as you’re able, with the best time counting.
By my calculations, the ladies’ ptp is between Aimee and Zoe, with Aimee needing 3rd place or better to take the title; Sarah Pettefer has bronze. In the age-graded competition, Ann has the title, with Aimee able to pip Zoe for second with 7th place or better. Zoe will certainly be rewarded for her efforts with prize money, just the amount is in doubt! In the gents’, Dominic has run too well to keep things exciting going into the last race, taking first place, with Joe second. Steve or I will be third – I need 8th place or better. Age graded, David or Dom could take it. David Pimm needs to finish third on age-grading if he is ahead of Dom, though if he is second with Dom first they will tie. Steve or I could pip Joe for third, but it’s unlikely. The above assumes ‘best possible’ results for the opposition, but if you’re in the running for the prizes, do check the arithmetic yourself!
|5||187||Collier, Dominic||26.2 RRC||M40||37.14||pb|
|10||473||Watkins, Stephen||26.2 RRC||M||38.15||pb|
|15||155||Chang, Joseph||26.2 RRC||M||39.05|
|18||496||Matthews, John||26.2 RRC||M||39.47|
|21||361||Neal, Jonathan||26.2 RRC||M||40.07|
|30||493||Billington, Aimee||26.2 RRC||W||41.20|
|36||599||Goulder, Richard||26.2 RRC||M||41.49||pb|
|44||505||Pengelly, Andrew||26.2 RRC||M40||43.30|
|48||463||Ashcroft, Zoe||26.2 RRC||W||44.06||pb|
|60||434||Pritchard, Matthew||26.2 RRC||M||45.52||pb|
|69||460||Gerrard, Simon||26.2 RRC||M||46.36|
|72||573||Pimm, David||26.2 RRC||M50||47.58|
|81||591||Stone, Kevin||26.2 RRC||M40||49.18||pb|
|84||161||Tozer, Peter||26.2 RRC||M60||49.52|
|87||159||Sunderland, Neil||26.2 RRC||M55||50.07|
|88||557||Pettefer, Sarah||26.2 RRC||W45||50.10|
|96||492||Bath, Ann||26.2 RRC||W||51.18|
|118||153||Baldwin, Lindsay||26.2 RRC||W40||55.34||pb|
|119||131||Wilkie, Derick||26.2 RRC||M60||55.34|
|173||154||Chang, Jacqueline||26.2 RRC||W||68.58|
|174||16||Wilson, Lizzie||26.2 RRC||W50||68.58|
Updated Grand Prix positions – first 10 only
Ladies – Past The Post
Ladies – Age Graded
Mens – Past The Post
Mens – Age Graded