Newsdesk 2006

 RANELAGH HARRIERS E-NEWS # 209                15 March 2006
 Editor: Steve Rowland
 mailto: steverowland@ranelagh-harriers.com  
 *  Sam Perkins 17th, Nadia Fidler 29th and Jo Ronaldson 39th in the
 *  Anna McLaughlin, Marie Synnott-Wells and Phil Killingley all in the top
 *  Graham Quick wins the Clutton Cup
 *  Junior Points Prize GP wins for Becky Withycombe, Lucy Edmunds, Rebecca
    Clayden, Taylor Nunn and Alfie Purdue
 *  Duncan Bell leads Ranelagh to victory in the Hec Petersen trophy
 *  Rachel Rowan and Fari Shams 4th and 6th in Dunsfold 10km
 *  Successful MABAC race in Richmond Park
 *  Presentation Supper to be held on 7th April

 ANNUAL PRIZE GIVING SUPPER  Friday 7th April at the Hawker Centre, Ham
 This is usually referred to as the Baker Cup supper, but sadly this year we
 are not able to hold it as usual on the evening of the Baker Cup race.
 Instead it will be on the following Friday, April 7th, at the Hawker Centre
 in Ham. Price is about 15 - to be confirmed. Tickets are on sale on Tuesday
 evenings at the clubhouse or you can contact Jo Turner
 (mailto:joturner_45@hotmail.com) or Marina Quayle

 This is the occasion for our splendid collection of trophies to be awarded
 to their new owners for the next twelve months. Please do try to come along,
 especially if you have any silverware to collect.

 If any current trophy holders have not yet been contacted by Alan Hedger
 regarding the return of their trophies, would they please contact Alan
 without delay on 01372 740626. He has to arrange for the new holders' names
 to be engraved before the presentation.

 BAKER CUP 3 miles road handicap  Saturday 1st April in Richmond Park
 The Baker Cup race itself will go ahead as scheduled on April 1st, starting
 at 3pm near White Lodge in the centre of the Park. It's a 3 miles handicap
 on a double out and back circuit on the closed roads between the Pen Ponds
 car park and Sheen Cross Roads. All members are welcome - just turn up at
 the clubhouse no later than 2.30pm to collect your number.

 RANELAGH CUP SCHOOLS RACE  Saturday 18th March in Richmond Park
 Our annual schools race takes place this Saturday starting at 2.30pm in the
 Park. The course is one lap of our mob match circuit. Anyone with an hour to
 spare to help out would be welcome. 

 ...sends an update from Melbourne, where she will contest the Commonwealth
 Games marathon for Australia this weekend:
 "I arrived in Melbourne on Monday and am staying at mum's at the moment.
 Tomorrow I move into the village and get the uniform and all that jazz, so
 will be a busy day with the opening ceremony to top it off (of course I am
 marching!).  Looking forward to visiting the 24 hour food hall. The big race
 is on Sunday 19th at 9:30am EST. Training has gone well and looking forward
 to a strong run.  I'm not a huge one for nerves so pretty calm currently and
 I think everyone else is more excited than me! I'm sure that won't last too
 much longer though".

 One of the runners taking part in the Queens Baton Relay for the
 Commonwealth Games - which culminated at the opening ceremony - was one of
 our Aussie former members Geoff Nicholson.

 GREEN BELT RELAY  Saturday 20th and Sunday 21st May
 We are planning to enter two or three teams in this event again this year.
 In brief, it's a relay right around the outskirts of London, starting at
 Hampton Court on Saturday morning, initially heading west along the river to
 Maidenhead then north through the Chilterns, round via St Albans and Epping
 Forest to stop for the night in deepest Essex. It then resumes on Sunday
 morning to complete the circle via Kent and the North Downs. There are 22
 stages in all, varying in distance from 5.6 miles to 13.8 miles. There are
 eleven runners in a team, and each runner has to run one stage on Saturday
 and another on Sunday.

 The route has been designed and amended over the years to make it as scenic
 as possible and although it's predominantly tarmac, every stage features
 some off-road. A number of stages are entirely off-road. 

 Although it's called a relay, each stage is run as a separate race with all
 runners starting together. Aggregate times decide the result. 

 The way it works is that we have a couple of minibuses and a car or two
 following the route. You can choose either to just run your own stage and
 then go home, or to follow the whole or part of the race. Teams have to
 supply their own support in the way of drinks etc, and each team has to
 cover a handful of marshalling points. For those that choose to stay with
 the race we book overnight accommodation in Essex. 

 We have a pretty good record in the race, having won it a number of times.
 In 2000 we managed to win the overall, women's and veterans' trophies! At
 the other end of the scale, Bev Ali's team won the 'Toilet Seat' trophy for
 the last team to finish three years in a row! So there's scope for all

 It's a very enjoyable event. You can see a lot more info about the route and
 so on at the race web site www.greenbeltrelay.org.uk.

 We have to decide pretty soon how many teams to enter, so if you think you
 might be interested please contact me or Anna McLaughlin (contact details
 below) or Clive Beauvais (01883 347410).

 David Wright writes:
 "Without wishing to prolong the '20' debate, I would refer Dave Locke to the
 Gazette's report of the 1983 Belgrave '20': 'The hottest day of a hot summer
 decimated a strong field on this always tough and unforgiving course'.  In a
 similar vein to his comment about Ranelagh's manipulation of their A & B
 teams in 1966, I remember that on this occasion I was lucky enough to be
 part of the Surrey team that won the inter-counties run in conjunction with
 the race.  The only reason being that the Surrey team manager, who happened
 also to be in charge of results, waited until after the race to see who was
 still standing and had actually finished before declaring the Surrey team!" 

 ALDERNEY HALF MARATHON  Saturday 9th September
 Angus Cater plans to sail his yacht to Alderney in the Channel Islands again
 and will welcome passengers. Or you can follow landlubber Clive Beauvais's
 example and fly from Sothampton or Bournemouth. Note there is also a 10km
 race option this year. For more info see
 http://www.alderney.gov.gg/index.php/pid/16/more_info/30 or contact Angus at
 ...to Bob Maslin who celebrated his 90th birthday last week. 

 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 ).

 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 /

 Saturday 18th March     Ranelagh Cup Schools Race in Richmond Park. 2.30pm
                                     Bushy Park Time Trial  5km. 9am start 

 Saturday 25th March      Bushy Park Time Trial  5km. 9am start 

 Sunday 26th March        Cranleigh 15 / 21 miles road race 

 Saturday 1st April          Baker Cup 3 miles road handicap in Richmond
 Park. 3pm start near White Lodge.
                                     Bushy Park Time Trial  5km. 9am start

 Sunday 2nd April           ASICS Kingston Breakfast runs ( 8 or 16 miles).
 Details: http://www.humanrace.co.uk/breakfast/index.html. 

 Friday 7th April              Annual Supper and Prize Presentation at the
 Hawker Centre, Ham.
 Saturday 8th April          Bushy Park Time Trial  5km. 9am start

 Sunday 9th April            Thames Towpath 10 miles at Chiswick. Details:
                                     Reading Half Marathon.  Details:
                                     MABAC League 5 miles at Winterfold (on
 the North Downs near Shere). 11am start. All members welcome. More details
 at http://www.mabac.org.uk/

 CLUTTON CUP 10 miles handicap  Saturday 11th March in Richmond Park
 The massive gaps between the starters in this, the longest handicap race in
 our calendar, often leads to the 'limit' runner holding on to the lead for
 most of the race. And so it proved this time, as Corinne Bishop made full
 use of the more than half an hour she had in hand over the day's scratch man
 Mark Middleton. Corinne in fact stayed in front right into the final mostly
 uphill half mile around Sidmouth Wood. Then Peter Wright fought his way past
 but his moment of glory was short-lived as Graham Quick swept by on his way
 to his first club trophy and the day's 4th fastest time of 61.40. 

 Peter held on to second place but within sight of the finish Corinne was
 pushed out of the medals by Marcus Gohar who put in the day's second fastest
 time of 60.48. Only Mark Middleton managed to beat the hour with 59.02 and
 third best was Andy Bickerstaff on 61.02. Fastest woman was Sandra Foot with
 76.16 - this despite finishing almost last owing to missing her start by
 some five minutes. 

 Park, Nottingham
 There were some very fine performances from the Ranelagh contingent but
 pride of place must perhaps go to Sam Perkins. With two years still to go in
 the under 20 age group Sam finished in a fine 17th place, the first Surrey
 finisher by a street. Nadia Fidler also led her county team - Middlesex - in
 the under 15s race where she finished an excellent 29th. 

 Our biggest representation was in the senior women's race where we provided
 three of Surrey's nine runners. Jo Ronaldson was second placed in the team
 throughout on her way to 39th place. Anna McLaughlin and Marie Synnott-Wells
 were fourth and sixth for Surrey in 66th and 95th places in a race that had
 great strength in depth. Anna writes: "Allison O'Neill had warned us that it
 would be a frantic first lap (it was), so I made sure that I didn't go
 charging off with everyone and it worked, and it was really nice, albeit a
 little strange, to be overtaking people the entire way round!" 

 Phil Killingley ran strongly in the senior men's race to take some good
 scalps as the fifth Surrey man in 67th place. Duncan Bell finished 213th as
 the third man in an incomplete Cheshire team. 

 1 H Dean (Oxford) 28.52
 39 Jo Ronaldson 31.19
 66 Anna McLaughlin 31.51
 95 Marie Synnott-Wells 32.35 

 Under 15s
 1 L Weightman (N East) 15.10
 29 Nadia Fidler 16.18 

 1 D Bannister (N East) 38.12
 63 Phil Killingley 40.45
 213 Duncan Bell 44.43 

 Under 20s
 1 L Carey (Worcs) 26.07
 17 Sam Perkins 27.39

 HEC PETERSEN TROPHY   Saturday 4th March in Richmond Park
 This is always a fairly low-key race but it does give the rare opportunity
 for a blast around just one lap of our mob match course. Fixture clashes
 prevented Ealing from bringing a strong team to defend the Hec Petersen
 trophy whereas there was a good home representation of some 26 runners.

 Overall winner at a canter was Hercules's James Trapmore and they also
 provided the third finisher. But Duncan Bell in 2nd place, Mark Middleton
 4th and Marcus Gohar 6th pulled the scoring our way, and Paul Sinton-Hewitt
 9th and Chris Owens 11th successfully wrapped up the five-to-score team race
 for us. 

 We had three more in the top twenty, including Steve Elswood in his first
 race for Ranelagh. Steve finished just ahead of the leading woman, Sara
 Grosvenor. Second home was 11-year-old Amelie Hunton, in her second race of
 the afternoon! 

 JUNIOR POINTS PRIZE FINAL RACE  Saturday 4th March in Richmond Park
 Nearly fifty runners took part in the four race series, 32 of them in this
 final race. Jamie Taylor-Caldwell was first home for the second race in
 succession but this time he was pressed hard by Morgan Evans, who was a mere
 three seconds behind at the finish. But both Jamie and Morgan only competed
 in two of the four races so it was Alfie Purdue who took the under 15 GP
 title, ahead of Steven Downie.  

 This turned out to be the trend for the afternoon, as Rebecca Clayden was
 the only GP winner to lead her age group today. Sadly she had no opposition
 to press her, but things were even worse in the boys under 17 section where
 we saw no competitors at all.  

 The picture could not have been more different in the under 13 age groups,
 where a total of 19 girls and 18 boys competed in the series. Stephanie
 Espinosa was the leading girl but there was another close finish as Amelie
 Hunton followed hot on her heels. But it was Becky Withycombe - shunted back
 to 5th today - who amassed enough points to take the GP title by just one
 point from Amelie with Emily Johnston-Purvis a further point behind in

 Taylor Nunn had won the boys' under 13 race in each of the first three
 fixtures but this time he had to give best to a fine run from Joshua
 Keisler. Taylor was well clear of Joss Moran for the GP with Joshua and
 Charlie Withycombe sharing third place. 

 Rachel Pryce ran a big personal best - one of no less than fifteen set
 today - to lead the under 15 girls, but it was Lucy Edmunds who beat her to
 the GP title with last year's winner Alex McKenna in third place. 

 A full scoreboard can be found in the junior section of our web site.

 BUSHY PARK TIME TRIAL 5km  Saturday 11th March
 Clare Gutch improved her personal best by one second to finish as the
 leading woman for the third time. 

 1 C Hart (Blackburn) 15.50
 7 Michael Black 17.55
 14 Iain Wilson 18.42
 15 Clare Gutch 18.43
 19 Chris Brook 19.02
 43 Chris Wright 20.57
 55 Yvonne Hill 21.29
 98 Gill Wilson 25.37
 104 John Hanscomb 26.41 

 BUSHY PARK TIME TRIAL 5km  Saturday 4th March
 It was a very strong race in depth this week but Sam Perkins was well up to
 the task in 4th place. 

 1 M Pierson (Holmfirth) 16.01
 4 Sam Perkins 16.42
 16 Iain Wilson 18.10
 26 Janine Brown 19.23
 27 Darren Wood 19.26
 67 Roger Wilson 21.46
 71 Chris Wright 21.35 (started late)
 73 Adam Wright 21.58
 104 Alan Craig 24.39
 108 Gill Wilson 24.56
 121 John Hanscomb 26.33
 131 Janet Turnes 28.04 

 MABAC LEAGUE  Sunday 5th March in Richmond Park
 Ann Murray reports:
 "Sunday 5th March was forecast to have snow but instead the first Ranelagh
 Harriers hosted MABAC race took place in glorious winter sunshine. The
 course had two loops - 2.66 miles in the first lap for juniors and joggers
 and walkers and a second loop making 5 miles for the seniors. Starting from
 Broomfield Hill car park and running down to Pen Ponds car park, around to
 the bottom of Queen's Ride and then up Queen's Ride towards Sidmouth Wood
 before turning into Queen Elizabeth Plantation and out into the open picking
 up the second lap at Pond Plantation. It ended with a challenging uphill
 finish where the end is never in sight until you actually arrive. 

 The race proved popular attracting 237 entrants - a 100% increase on the 115
 who came last year. For the past 13 years the race has been hosted by
 Feltham Puffers but due to falling numbers in the club and a competing
 interest in Triathlons, when Ranelagh asked to join the MABAC League we were
 asked to host this race. This year we had the guidance and assistance of the
 Feltham Puffers. 

 For those of you who don't know, MABAC is a monthly Sunday morning league.
 The races are mostly cross-country and usually five miles. MABAC also run
 the Cranleigh 15/21 and the Surrey Slog Half Marathon. These are open events
 and the money raised from these goes towards financing the MABAC League. So
 once a month you turn up in a Surrey beauty spot, collect your own number
 (the same one each time you come) and join in. The ethos is "Fitness,
 Friendship and Fun", there are no prizes but times are recorded. 

 Not only was Ranelagh able to host this race but we were also fortunate to
 have Luke Wilson and Bruno Wilson-Betancor running in the junior race and
 Roger Wilson, Phil Aiken returning from injury, Evelyn Joslin, Vicci Hollis,
 Louise Dunn and Beverly Walsh in the senior race. Thanks to everyone who
 helped and made it such a great day. 

 We hope that this race will have something for everybody and that more
 people will try out MABAC now that Ranelagh are members. You just turn up
 and join in. The fixture list is at www.MABAC.org.uk. 

 ...dates from the seventies, when the League was first set up. The prime
 mover was Alan Blatchford, who died in 1982. He organized a running group at
 the British Aircraft Corporation works in Weybridge (now British Aerospace).
 Ralph Henley brought in runners from Matthew Arnold School, Ashford. Hence
 1 C Folan (Blackwater V) 29.32
 40 Roger Wilson 36.14
 83 Phil Aiken 40.44
 106 Louise Dunn 43.26
 138 Evelyn Joslin 47.27
 139 Vicci Hollis 47.27
 167 Beverly Walsh 57.57 

 1 E Gorecka (Dorking) 15.02
 12 Luke Wilson 19.02
 23 Bruno Wilson-Betancor 24.47 

 DUNSFOLD 10km  Sunday 5th March
 Rachel Rowan reports:
 "The race went well. My goal this year in 10k is to go sub 40 mins which I
 had hoped to achieve in this. Unfortunately it was quite windy in parts of
 the course as you can imagine on an air field! In particular on the home
 straight so believe it or not my time was 40 mins 1 sec!!! I am not too
 disappointed since I know that without the wind a sub 40mins is achievable
 for me over a flat course. I was also 4th woman home and 1st in the 35 to 40
 vets category. Fari also did well as she was 6th woman home and we both got
 a prize".
 1 P Freary (Belgrave) 32.15  (chip time 32.15)
 27 Jonny Rowan 39.28  (chip time 39.24)
 35 Rachel Rowan 40.06  (chip time 40.01)
 46 Fari Shams 41.10  (chip time 41.08)
 298 John Hanscomb 55.31  (chip time 55.25) 

 REGENTS PARK 10km  Sunday 5th March
 Steve and Sonia finished 2nd over 50 and 3rd over 45 respectively in this GP
 series of six races over the winter months.
 1 S Barrett (Serpentine) 32.58
 33 Steve Rowland 39.53
 85 John Pratt 44.20
 106 Sonia Rowland 46.02 

 Alan Davidson writes:
 "I managed despite two sets of engineering works resulting in three trains
 and two buses to get to Bournemouth in time for the BMAF Cross-Country
 champs. Dull weather but milder than home for 4x2 laps (8km) round the edge
 of football pitches - flat but for 2x10 yard 'hills' at the perimeter. Firm
 enough to run in racing flats apart from the odd muddy patch.My modest
 effort on the short, fast course was a time of 34.06".  

 BUSHY PARK TRAIL RUNS   4.8 miles  Sunday 26th February
 Roger Wilson reports:
 "The annual Bushy Park Trail Run organised by Stragglers was a flat course
 on tracks and grass, well marshalled, the finish made more welcome by
 medals, a warm pavilion and tea afterwards. The Junior (under-17) 2+ miles
 was run before the senior event - Amelie Hunton was 2nd only to a 15
 year-old boy and Luke Wilson won 5 for fifth placed boy. It's a friendly
 event, ideal for fast and beginner runners next year". 

 1 D Cowlishaw (Lon Irish) 25.23
 42 Roger Wilson 32.57
 62 Simon Burrell 35.14
 100 Gill Wilson 39.27
 117 John Hanscomb 41.46
 121 Janet Turnes 42.06
 126 Alan Meaden 42.36
 138 David Meaden 43.42
 153 Ann Murray 48.01
 154 Deborah Blakemore 48.08 

 Junior Race
 1 M Taylor (Kingston & P) 12.56
 2 Amelie Hunton 14.12
 5 George Inman 15.31
 8 Luke Wilson 16.00
 The loneliness of the long-distance runner is a reality, scientists claim -
 at least in rats! Researchers at Princeton University found that rats
 running together experienced many beneficial effects including the
 generation of new brain cells. But running alone generated no such cells.
 They also found that if the opportunity to run was withdrawn, the rats
 suffered physiological and psychological problems...