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Newsdesk 2005

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 RANELAGH HARRIERS E-NEWS # 199                14 December 2005
 Editor: Steve Rowland
 mailto: steverowland@ranelagh-harriers.com
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 HEADLINE NEWS
 *********************
 *  South London Harriers win the Stubbs Cup mob match comfortably
 *  Team bronze for Anna McLaughlin in the Southern Inter-Counties
 *  BPTT - third consecutive second place for Sam Perkins
 *  Full house for the Christmas Party
 *  Result of ballot for London Marathon club places

 SEE HERE
 *************
 LONDON MARATHON CLUB PLACES
 Eleven names went into the hat for the ballot and at the Christmas Party on
 Friday the lucky(?) six were drawn. They were: Peter Taylor, Pete Warren,
 Niall O'Connor, Stephen Instone, Trevor Maguire and John Atkinson. Get
 training, guys!

 SOUTH OF THE THAMES 7.5 MILES CROSS-COUNTRY CHAMPIONSHIP  Saturday 17th
 December
 Note that the start time for this race on Wimbledon Common is 2pm not 2.30pm
 as originally stated. We have men's and women's teams entered and if anyone
 else would like to have a run they should contact Andy or Anna (contact
 details below). 

 TUESDAY NIGHTERS' CHRISTMAS PARTY
 There will be mulled wine in the clubhouse after next Tuesday's (December
 20th) training session. All welcome but please bring a small contribution to
 the food table.

 HENTY RELAY  Saturday 31st December at 12 noon in Richmond Park
 Our Christmas season fun relay over six 2km laps of Sidmouth Wood. Teams of
 three are drawn on the day in the clubhouse, each team comprising one
 'fast', one 'medium' and one 'slow'. 'Fast' runners run three laps,
 'mediums'  do two and 'slows' one. All members, friends and guests are
 welcome BUT you must be at the clubhouse by 11.30am to get into a team.

 BUSHY PARK TIME TRIAL
 As well as the usual Saturday morning events on Saturday 24th and 31st there
 will also be special runs on Christmas Day and New Year's Day. Start as
 usual at 9am at the Diana Fountain car park.

 SURREY CROSS-COUNTRY LEAGUES  Saturday 14th January
 Advance warning that the start times for the men's league at Lloyd Park,
 Croydon, are half an hour earlier than normal - that is, under 17s at 2pm
 and seniors at 2.30pm. Start times are as normal for the women (12.30pm for
 seniors, 1.15pm for U17s / U20s and 1.45pm for U15s / U13s) for their event
 at Merrow Downs, Guildford.

 MABAC LEAGUE
 Ranelagh has entered the MABAC League for 2006. There are about 15 MABAC
 events during the year, mostly 5 miles cross-country and mostly in the
 Surrey Hills / North Downs area. There are a few exceptions including a
 couple of road races and a pairs relay, and most events include a shorter
 alternative for 'joggers' and juniors. Start time is normally 11am on Sunday
 mornings. It's not intended that the MABAC should be a club priority but it
 will provide low-key alternative events in some different surroundings.

 Bev Ali adds:
 "The MABAC fixtures list for 2006 is now on their site at www.Mabac.org.uk.
 A link to this website is now on the Ranelagh website under 'Links'. The
 first race, which will be a road eight mile run or 1.3 mile walk/jog, is on
 the 8th January in Windsor Great Park starting at 11 am - BUT best be at the
 car park by 10:20 with 2 ready for parking fees, and NEW 2006 numbers will
 be distributed. Directions and maps are available on the MABAC website
 fixture list.

 There will also be a 'gentle 12 mile jog' (not race), organised by MABAC
 member club 'MAGIC', also through Windsor Great Park, on the 27th December.
 Start is at 9 am for walkers and 10 am for joggers/runners from the RAF
 Memorial car park, Coopers Hill Lane, Englefield Green (just off the A30
 south of the M25). There will be a halfway drinks station and it is planned
 to meet up in the Barley Mow pub afterwards. More detailed instructions are
 linked to the 2005 fixture list on the MABAC website".

 TOUR DE MONT BLANC
 Niall O'Connor writes:
 "Entries for the 2006 Tour de Mont Blanc have opened and nearly 1400 of the
 maximum 2000 places were snapped up in a week. If any of you fancy a
 summertime challenge in the French Alps you'd better be quick! The 155km
 route begins in Chamonix, loops through Italy and Switzerland before
 finishing back at the start. The total increase in altitude is the same as
 climbing Everest from sea-level (but at least you get the downhill also),
 the distance is 155km and the cut-off is 45 hours. The organisation and
 support is excellent with plenty of aid/food stations, marshals and even
 some showers, all manned throughout the nights. It took me 38 hours last
 year and while I said 'never again'...well...we all know why you change your
 mind! Flights to Geneva cost about 80 return with a local train cost of 25
 to Chamonix (all return) so it's a fairly cheap trip. Here's the link
 http://www.ultratrailmb.com/accueil.php and if anyone is interested give me
 a shout, it would be good to have the company of some fellow 'Ranelites'
 (mailto:niall_o_c@hotmail.com). 

 YAHOO GROUP
 Bev Ali writes:
 "Cindy has started a Yahoo Group called Ranelaghbevsgroup - in order to
 subscribe to the group and receive e-mails, all you need to do is send an
 e-mail to Ranelaghbevsgroup-subscribe@yahoogroups.com with the Subject
 'subscribe', and they will e-mail you back confirmation of joining.
 Notwithstanding the name of the group, membership is in no way limited to
 'Bev's Group' from Tuesday nights. It is a vehicle for organising group runs
 or training (or cancelling them...) or other social events or arranging
 rides to races etc".

 *********************
  WHAT'S COMING...
 ************************
 More details of the following from
 Andy Bickerstaff (07966 552302 / mailto: andy@norris-hobs.co.uk ) or 
 Phil Aiken (07739 035189 / mailto: phil.aiken@rnid.org.uk ) or 
 Anna McLaughlin (07971 606521 / mailto: anna.mclaughlin@itv.com ).

 Saturday 17th December    South of the Thames 7.5 miles championship on
 Wimbledon Common starting at 2pm
                                         Ranelagh Bushy Park Time Trial  5km.
 9am start.

 Saturday 24th December    Christmas Eve Ranelagh Bushy Park Time Trial  5km.
 9am start.

 Sunday 25th December      Christmas Day Ranelagh Bushy Park Time Trial 5km.
 9am start

 Saturday 31st December    Henty Relay in Richmond Park starting at 12 noon.
 See above.
                                         Ranelagh Bushy Park Time Trial  5km.
 9am start.

 Sunday 1st January           New Year's Day Ranelagh Bushy Park Time Trial
 5km. 9am start

 Saturday 7th January         Surrey County Cross-Country Championships at
 Lloyd Park, Croydon. Juniors from 11am, senior women 1.15pm, senior men
 2.10pm.
                                         Ranelagh Bushy Park Time Trial  5km.
 9am start.

 WHAT'S HAPPENED...
 ****************************
 CHRISTMAS PARTY  Friday 9th December
 The Turk's Head was bursting at the seams with some 120 Ranelagh members,
 family and friends. We first sat down to an excellent meal accmpanied by
 wine most generously provided by our President Brian Chard. Early excitement
 was provided by the draw for London Marathon club places - see above. Tables
 were then cleared away and the more energetic hit the dance floor and
 caroused well into the night. Many thanks to Marina Quayle and Jo Turner for
 their slick organisation. 

 STUBBS CUP MOB MATCH v SOUTH LONDON HARRIERS  Saturday 10th December at
 Coulsdon
 Mid-December always has other attractions to lure your average Harrier away
 from Saturday afternoon duty in the fields. A Christmas Party the night
 before was just one more distraction! But 27 RH eventually put in an
 appearance on Farthing Downs on a crisp and bright afternoon, to be faced
 with a modest 42 from the home side. 

 In fact it was a rather pleasant day to be away from the shops and out in
 the country. SLH's course is a testing one, with some climbs and mud but
 fast stretches too. Stuart Major was soon away clear and Peter Haarer -
 winner here two years ago - established himself in an isolated second place.
 These positions remained unchanged to the finish. Duncan Bell and Mick Lane
 both ran well for 4th and 6th but then SLH began to pack in and only Peter
 Weir interrupted the next ten white vests across the line. 

 It was here that SLH's final winning margin was established. Thereafter it
 was fairly level pegging and much of their numerical advantage was actually
 grouped towards the back of the field. A handful more Ranelaghs in the top
 twenty would have produced a much closer result. But for this year the
 Stubbs Cup returns to South London. At least, it should...we cunningly
 failed to bring it with us!

 Sue Ashley adds:
 "The mob match had unexpected consequences - Stuart Major's wife Pippa, who
 had done her run in the morning, was getting a bit too enthusiastic in her
 support of SLH and went into labour a few hours later (three weeks early).
 She produced a new recruit for the men's team!"

 SOUTH OF ENGLAND INTER-COUNTIES CROSS-COUNTRY CHAMPIONSHIPS  Saturday 10th
 December at Thetford, Suffolk
 Anna McLaughlin reports:
 "After a great night of partying at the Ranelagh Christmas do, it was quite
 a struggle to get up and be at Surbiton Station for 7:30am, but with a 3
 hour coach journey ahead, plus a few hours of supporting and scouting the
 course, needs must! On arriving at RAF Barnham (the middle of nowhere!) our
 initial thoughts about the course were confirmed with a walk around... it
 was flat, beautiful and was going to be fast.... but in a final twist
 towards the end of each lap, to make up for the lack of hills, they had
 thrown in a zig zag of four steep downs and ups through the tank trap
 ditches, a real leg zapper!

 Finally it was 3pm and time for the combined Senior Women and U23's race.
 From Ranelagh Estelle Damant and I were running for Surrey and, with 13
 counties being represented, with 4 to score, it was going to be quite a
 race. As soon as the gun went and the elbows had been negotiated on the
 first corner, it was time to settle down into the race and to battle for
 position. Due to my recent eye injury, I was having to support my clear
 running glasses, so it was fingers crossed that with the fading light I
 wouldn't come a cropper... but at least if I had I could have used the 'it's
 cross country excuse'! The first lap was quite busy throughout, but the tank
 traps seemed to sort the field out, making the 2nd lap a clearer run, with
 easier overtaking opportunities. With Sarah Smith (Surrey's Assistant Team
 Manager) popping up all over the course to support, I had knowledge of where
 I was in the field and just what I had to do to get to the end in that place
 (or better!), so with 800m to go with the Surrey team packing well I struck
 out for the end, leaving the sprint finish for after the last tank trap, but
 it was worth it to gain those few extra places... so finally it was over,
 6km completed and home as Surrey's 3rd scorer (and 12th Senior Woman
 overall)! And not only that, the Surrey team of Rachel Disley (TH&H), Emily
 Adams (Aldershot), me (Ranelagh Harriers) and Elinor Caborn (Sutton
 Runners), closed in in Bronze medal position, a fantastic result! 

 Estelle was suffering from the start of a cold so wasn't overjoyed at her
 run, but in the Under 23 category she finished in the same position as me in
 the seniors, 12th".
 
 Sarah Smith adds:
 "Anna forgot to mention that the army were actually training in the same
 area as the race, at the same time! No wonder some of the girls ran so
 quickly when there were soldiers with guns watching them!!! Indeed as I was
 running around the course supporting I had to keep my eye out for army
 people lying on the ground, and crawling in the undergrowth...most bizarre!"

 1 V Webster (Herts) 22.22
 22 Anna McLaughlin 24.46
 39 Estelle Damant 25.39

 BUSHY PARK TIME TRIAL 5km  Saturday 10th December
 Sam Perkins, fresh from the Christmas party, finished second for the third
 week in succession, but there was no disgrace in seeing Britain's top 800
 metres runner James McIlroy disappear into the distance. McIlroy joined the
 select dozen or so who have beaten 16 minutes on this course.

 1 J McIlroy (WSEH) 15.58
 2 Sam Perkins 17.33
 6 Nick Wright 18.50
 10 Jamie Taylor-Caldwell 19.20
 24 Darren Wood 20.42
 33 Yvonne Hill 21.26
 35 Chris Hunton 21.29
 36 Amelie Hunton 21.30
 37 Chris Wright 21.39
 43 Adam Wright 23.37
 57 Luke Wilson 25.41
 58 Gill Wilson 25.42
 63 John Hanscomb 26.16 

 STOCKPORT 10 miles  Sunday 11th December
 1 M Aspinall (Lancs & M) 50.57
 40 John Atkinson 63.07

 BEDFORD HALF MARATHON  Sunday 11th December
 Deborah and Ann braved the smoke and soot for their first half marathon.
 1 M Halman (Wilmslow) 1.11.01
 1133 Deborah Blakemore 2.27.33
 1134 Ann Murray 2.27.33

 HOG'S BACK 8.1 miles  Sunday 11th December at Guildford
 1 K Nash (Belgrave) 41.49
 490 John Hanscomb 72.35
 533 Alan Meaden 74.51
 611 David Meaden 82.33

 CYPRUS CHALLENGE  Sunday 27th November - Friday 2nd December
 Alan Davidson writes:
 "Having stopped 4.5 miles into RAF Henlow 10 with an adductor strain (got
 quick ice and help of RAF Doc), I thought my races in Cyprus would be off.
 On Sunday with heavy thigh strap I was nearly last in over 30 mins for 5k;
 the Tuesday race I ignored; for the Keo Brewery Two Race Challenge (Thursday
 4.5 mile chalk hill race and Friday 5.5 mile road / prom) I decided to try
 to jog without strapping and unbelievably ran 33.20 and 37.14 to finish 5th
 overall and win the over 55 prize! The girlfriend of the winner said she was
 amazed by my run, but she wasn't as amazed as I was! The sun shone all 11
 days I was there and it was even warm in the mountains". 

 FINALLY...
 If you have a mind, prepare to have it boggled...the Greek ultra-distance
 star Yiannis Kouros, now 49 years old, has set a new world six-day track
 record in the annual Cliff Young race in Colac, Australia. He covered 254km
 (158 miles) on the opening day, which itself ranks in the year's top ten 24
 hour performances. He followed that up with 178km (110 miles) and 158km (98
 miles) on the second and third days, bettering the world 500km record by two
 and a half hours on the way. Days four, five and six saw him cover 148km (92
 miles), 156km (97 miles) and 141km (88 miles) for a grand total of 1036.8km
 (644.23 miles), an improvement of 13.6 km over his own world record. He
 covered 2592 laps of the 400 metres track! There were 34 competitors from
 all over the world and all but nine were still on the track at the finish.
 Kouros won by 214 km (133 miles)...more details:
 http://sixdayrace.org.au/colac/ .