Zero2Hero graduates at Fleet 10k and Great South Run

The below race report was written by Josie Bate. If you would like to contribute race reports to the site, please do send us your contributions to be published.

So this weekend, as Richard writes, saw an array of fantastic running feats by members of 26.2. For some of us, it was even more special, as a number of Kevin’s first Z2H graduates took their places on the start line of two great events – the Fleet 10k or the Great South Run, the latter being billed as the “world’s leading 10 mile running event”.

It’s perhaps fitting that just ten months on from being lead in our first warm-up by Mr Stone on a cold and dark winter’s night in January, we would be whatsapping each other as we drove south to Hampshire or further south to Portsmouth, to partake in running events featuring the number ten.

These messages between people – the majority of whom did not know each other at the start of this year – give a far greater insight into what we were feeling as we made our way there, than any words I could write. The advice being swapped was priceless.

Sian-Queen-of-the-lube-Thomas recommended the virgin GSRers should apply Vaseline to nipples and thighs, especially useful if you happened to be wearing a bra. This struck me as odd, until she went on to specify that going commando would be a great help too. Kate Hancock, who bravely volunteered to look after the smaller Fleet 10k newbies, waded in with sound advice for us, including a specific mention that we were on no account to wear any new clothes, including socks. I took this to mean just not new running gear, as opposed to running naked, which I felt would not be a great advert for the club.

Unfortunately for the Fleet 10kers, Debbie Gilmore hadn’t read the message properly – cue a half body strip in the Fleet shopping centre car park as she flung off her new leggings in favour of the older pair she had brought with her. Lee Hilton, who simply wanted to get to Fleet and do a straightforward 10k, looked ashen faced as Debbie did her Sunday strip.  He was also unbelievably gallant as we queued for the loos not once, but twice. You can never go too many times before a run, although Debbie nearly didn’t make it to the start line at all, managing to briefly get locked in the cubicle.  Emerging to freedom, she went straight back into another queue for one final wee. Strange people, runners.   


Meanwhile down at Portsmouth keen runners Julie Norris and Fiona Watters had arrived so early that Sian wondered if they were actually there to set up. But the girls were simply keen to soak up the atmosphere, and so they did. The picture of them trying to keep warm wrapped in plastic beside the port a loos crystallises, for me, all that is fantastic about running on a Sunday morning in chilly October.


All in all, a great day was had by us all. Becky Stopford and I, who selflessly bring up the rear on club running nights, had vowed to do our 10k before the roads re-opened; we did not disgrace ourselves. You’ll see on the results here that none of us did actually. Lots of people are happy to run alone, and I salute them. But for those of us new to running, or who perhaps need that extra helping hand to keep going, then the ethos of 26.2 is perfect. No-one runs alone, no-one gets left behind.  This was especially true of Sarah Lothian on Sunday, who, whilst getting a GSR PB, kept Katie Ockenden going when Katie, who subsequently went down with the lurgy, began to struggle.


Thank you Sir Kevin Stone of Runningshire for starting us off on our running lives. We salute you.  

Great South Run

23 Oct 2016 – 10 miles

Position Runner Gun Time Actual Time PB?*
1 Chris Wilson 01:08:47
2 Sian Thomas 01:38:29 Yes
3 Teresa Waller 01:44:30 Yes
4 Fiona Watters 01:47:21 Yes
5 Julie Norris 01:48:04 Yes
6 Katie Ockenden 01:48:18 Yes
7 Sarah Lothian 01:48:21 Yes
8 Steve Stopford 01:51:49 Yes
9 Dean Cox 01:57:03 Yes

Fleet 10k

23 Oct 2016 – 10k

Position Runner Gun Time Actual Time PB?*
1 Anthony Brooke 00:52:56
2 Lee Hilton 00:53:29
3 Kate Hancock 00:59:33
4 Debbie Gilmore 01:06:18 Yes
5 Becky Stopford 01:13:00 Yes
6 Josie Bate 01:14:20 Yes

Great South Run finishers.
Great South Run finishers.
Fleet 10k finishers