**************************************************************************** RANELAGH HARRIERS E-NEWS # 269 6 December 2007 Editor: Steve Rowland mailto: email@example.com **************************************************************************** HEADLINE NEWS ********************* * Serpentine win both the Ellis Cup and the Dysart Cup * Anna Scally wins Hugh Jones Salver club championship * Sonia Rowland wins Trish's Trophy club over 40s championship * Mandy Westlake 2nd & Andrew Forth 2nd Vet in Grand Union Canal Half Marathon * Christmas Party at the Turks Head this Friday * Mob Match at South London Harriers (Coulsdon) this Saturday SEE HERE ************* STUBBS CUP MOB MATCH v SOUTH LONDON HARRIERS Saturday 8th December Another week, another race...the changes to the racing calendar have made this a very busy time of year, but this is the last general call to arms before Christmas, so please come over to Coulsdon if you can. As always with mob matches, we need as many runners as we can get, and all will count towards the final result. Unlike our parkland circuit, this is a cross-country race in the country - Farthing Downs and Happy Valley to be precise. It's a testing but scenic course, and after all the recent rain some parts will certainly be muddy. Start is at 2.30pm and there will be transport leaving the Ranelagh clubhouse at 12.15pm for anyone who wants to use it. The race HQ is at South London's clubhouse next to the Comrades Club on Brighton Road (the A23) in Coulsdon. Parking is available around the corner in Lion Green Road. The start is up on Farthing Downs, a five minute jog away. SOUTH OF THE THAMES LONG COURSE CHAMPIONSHIP Saturday 15th December The second South of the Thames Championship is the 7.5 miler and is taking place at Nork Park, Banstead. Start time is 2pm. HENTY RELAY Saturday 29th December in Richmond Park This is our Christmas fun relay, open to all members, friends and family. Anyone who can run a mile and a bit, in fact. It's for teams of three (which are drawn on the day). Each team consists of one "fast" runner, one "medium" and one "slow". The relay is over six 2km laps of Sidmouth Wood - the "fast" runs three laps, the "medium" two and the "slow" one lap, in any order. The race starts at 12 noon, but you MUST come to the clubhouse to register by 11.30am, in order to be allocated to a team. SURREY COUNTY CHAMPIONSHIPS Saturday 5th January 2008 The county championships for all age groups, male and female, will be held at Lloyd Park, Croydon, on 5th January. Junior events start from 11am, senior women are at 1.25pm, senior men at 2.15pm. All are welcome to run but entries must be made in advance. If you're interested, please let Andy or Marie know (contact details below). BALLOT FOR CLUB PLACES IN THE 2008 LONDON MARATHON The draw for the Ranelagh guaranteed places will take place at the Christmas Party this Friday. To be eligible you must be a paid-up member whose marathon entry has been rejected. If you are eligible and haven't yet put your name in, contact Simon Burrell without delay at firstname.lastname@example.org or 07753 834231. DYSART DASH 2008 Bev Ali writes: "We now have two intrepid volunteers to help out with the coordination of the Dysart Dash for next year - Louise Piears and Paul Sinton-Hewitt - many thanks to both for coming forward. If you were thinking about it but not sure you wanted to commit, your help will still be very much appreciated, in whatever capacity. Please contact any one of us if you would like to have a role in ensuring the continued success of our annual 10k race". Contact Bev at email@example.com ANGUS IN THE CARIBBEAN Those following Angus Cater's voyage to the Antarctic will be pleased to hear that the Atlantic crossing was completed on 27th November when Angus's yacht Harrac safely reached Grenada. Tim Woolmer, who had been a crew member for the Atlantic leg, left the boat there and was replaced by Alan Craig and Sally Meekley. Harrac is now cruising along the Colombian coast en route to the Panama Canal. To follow progress and to read Angus's Captain's Log, go to yachtplot.com/ and log in as harrac, password harrac. ********************* WHAT'S COMING... ********************* More details of the following from Andy Bickerstaff ( 07772 111491 / mailto: firstname.lastname@example.org ) or Marie Synnott-Wells (07956 431319 / mailto: email@example.com ). Saturday 8th December Stubbs Cup mob match v South London Harriers at Coulsdon, 2.30pm start. Saturday 15th December South of the Thames Long Course Championship at Banstead, 2pm start Saturday 29th December Henty Relay in Richmond Park, 12 noon start. Saturday 5th January Surrey County Championships at Lloyd Park, Croydon. Every Saturday Bushy Park Time Trial: 9am start at the Diana Fountain car park. Wimbledon Common Time Trial: 9am start at the Windmill car park. Banstead Woods Time Trial: 9am start off B2219 Park Lane, Chipstead Richmond Park Time Trial: 9am start near Richmond gate. More details at www.parkrun.com WHAT'S HAPPENED... *************************** DYSART CUP 4 miles incl club women's senior and vets championships Saturday 1st December in Richmond Park The Dysart Cup attracted a field of nearly 60 runners from ten clubs. Ranelagh were the holders, but our team was not at full strength, in particular missing our Captain, Marie Synnott-Wells, who was reduced to the role of team manager owing to a chest infection. As Marie was the holder of both the Hugh Jones Salver for the club women's champion and Trish's Trophy for the top over 40, it was inevitable that these trophies would be finding new homes this year. In Marie's absence, Anna Scally was the clear favourite to regain the championship she last won in 2004. At the end of the first short lap it was Anna who was making the pace, but on her shoulder and looking ominously comfortable was Dulwich's Clare Elms. The two had met only a couple of weeks earlier in the Home Countries International at Belfast. There, Elms - representing England in the Over 40s category - had finished over half a minute clear of Anna, and this time she again proved the stronger, tracking Anna until the last drag up to the finish and then striding well clear. Though deprived of the overall win, Anna was happy enough to take the Salver, and in so doing she maintains an odd tradition. There has been a different name engraved on the trophy each year since 1997. This was Anna's second win, but the previous one had of course been under her maiden name McLaughlin. Clare King finished strongly for third place overall and the silver medal in the club championship, and Jenny Lloyd-Jones in 12th overall took the bronze. Carola Richter and Sonia Rowland completed the scoring five, but they could manage only third place in the team competition. Serpentine, despite their leading finisher being no higher than 7th, packed in well enough to beat Thames by ten points with Ranelagh another 6 points in arrears. Sonia Rowland won Trish's Trophy for the leading over 40 for the fourth time. The sealed handicap was a pretty close run thing, with Sharon Rowe winning by 24 seconds and barely half a minute covering the next six. David Rowe's photos: ELLIS CUP 5.5 miles Saturday 1st December in Richmond Park A dozen clubs were represented in the men's Ellis Cup, though half of them failed to muster enough even for the subsidiary 6-a-side scoring. The race was a story of the two Egyptians, both recent recruits to Hercules Wimbledon and more than useful runners. They were in a leading group of half a dozen or so who unfortunately ran off course at the far end of Queen's Ride, where the designated route turns right at the top of the hill and right again to head back down to the Pen Ponds. They apparently continued straight on, mis-directed by a (possibly) well-meaning bystander. Reports of the sawdust trail having blown away should be taken with a pinch of....sawdust. The result was a loss of some four or five hundred metres. At the end of the first lap one of the Egyptians gave up and vented his frustration by launching into a general-purpose rant at everyone within earshot. Meanwhile, his countryman Hussein Aly Hamed got stuck in, regained all the lost ground and more besides, and came home a doubly deserved winner by the margin of a good 100 metres. There's got to be a moral there! Two more HW runners followed him in, and they looked to be favourites to win the Ellis Cup for the first time since 1987. But Serpentine packed in well, just as they had in the women's race, and pipped them by 25 points. Ranelagh's team was a scratch one led by Niall O'Connor in 17th place, ahead of a good run from Chris Brook, who took a full minute off the time he ran on the same course (albeit a marginally longer version) in the South of the Thames race two weeks before. Richard Xerri's photos: LAST FRIDAY OF THE MONTH 5km Friday 30th November in Hyde Park 1 R Ward (Belgrave) 16.00 162 John Hanscomb 26.45 BUSHY PARK TIME TRIAL 5km Saturday 1st December 1 D Symons (TH&H) 16.48 8 Darren Wood 18.28 14 Jonny Peacock 18.58 66 Chris Hunton 21.43 68 Amelie Hunton 21.44 113 Adam Wright 23.23 116 Paul Bisping 23.26 183 Gill Wilson 26.04 184 Alice Clemens 26.05 201 Alison Salmon 26.59 249 John Hanscomb 28.43 259 Daniel Hobbs 29.16 277 Stacey Barber 31.40 282 Dierdre Inman 31.58 RICHMOND PARK TIME TRIAL 5km Saturday 1st December 1 B Osborn (Stragglers) 17.56 10 Stephen Instone 20.18 31 Wiebke Kortum 23.58 44 Vaughan Ramsey 25.24 55 Julie Naismith 28.11 58 Janet Turnes 29.11 BANSTEAD WOODS TIME TRIAL 5km Saturday 1st December 1 M Marzetti (Unatt) 17.27 25 Yvonne Hill 22.15 HYDE PARK (LEEDS) TIME TRIAL 5km Saturday 1st December 1 D Norman (Straggs) 17.23 7 Duncan Mallison 19.09 GRIM CHALLENGE 8 miles Sunday 2nd December at Aldershot Sharon Rowe reports: "After taking part in many road races during the summer months it was time to get wet and muddy by entering the Grim 8 mile off-road challenge that was held this past weekend. On Sunday 2nd December when the country was being hammered with gale force winds and heavy rain, I and nearly 1400 others set off through mud, puddles and cargo nets near Aldershot in Hampshire - apparently they test army vehicles here but give us humans an opportunity to run on the same course! They had warned us before the start about the 'puddle' at around 5 miles. It was deep. It was b****y freezing. It was orange. And it was fun!! I waded through, taking it fairly steadily as all around me people were tripping over little hillocks hidden under the water and falling into the puddle in a most spectacular manner. I don't think I have ever felt so cold, or so unable to run in my whole life. As I clambered out, I honestly wanted to stop - my legs were like blocks of ice - but I kept going (of course I did, I am way too stubborn to let a silly little 8 mile race beat me!). Wearing my Ranelagh vest with pride (and for a layer of warmth!) I finished in 1 hour 30 minutes and position 963 out of 1378 finishers. I have written a much longer report about the event at our running website [http://rowerunning.co.uk/?p=232] where you can also see some photos of people getting extremely wet and muddy". 1 S Wurr (TH&H) 49.46 963 Sharon Rowe 90.38 KINGFIELD CANTER 2.85 miles handicap Wednesday 5th December at Woking 1 A Mayger (Unatt) 24.56 (actual time 20.41) 14 Sonia Rowland 26.47 (20.32) GRAND UNION CANAL HALF MARATHON Sunday 11th November Mandy Westlake was the second woman to finish and Andrew Forth - fifth overall - was the second veteran. 1 A Macaskill (Maid) 75.12 5 Andrew Forth 83.20 18 Mandy Westlake 91.36 BENIDORM HALF MARATHON Sunday 25th November Simon Burrell reports: "It seemed like a great idea late one night in the Dysart...some months later, Deborah and I found ourselves bound for sunny Benidorm, with a Half Marathon beckoning. We met Jo Turner and her sister Jane in the resort. The event is coupled with a full marathon, starting an hour and a half earlier, to mix the runners in the latter stages. The weather for the marathon start was cold, wet and windy, but improved gradually. The course includes a run along the beachfront (great support) and a long slow uphill (and corresponding down) from about mile 11. We thought it was tough but the marathoners had to do it three times! None of the Ranelagh contingent was on top form, with a mixture of injury, poor training schedule (me) and too many hotel breakfasts (me again). As a result we were all happy to finish in reasonable times. Jo's sister Jane managed a massive pb over the distance on her second half marathon. One major plus point was using Running Crazy (www.runningcrazy.co.uk), who organised transport, hotel, entries, post race Karaoke party etc. I would definitely recommend them for a foreign event". 1 C Koech (Kenya) 1.05.52 (chip time 1.03.55) 1214 Simon Burrell 1.49.58 (1.48.23) 1215 Joanne Turner 1.49.58 (1.48.22) 1916 Jane Turner 2.10.40 (2.09.06) 2049 Deborah Blakemore 2.26.05 (2.24.30) FLORENCE MARATHON Sunday 25th November As promised last week, here is a fuller account of what sounds like a spectacular Florence Marathon, from Andy Hayward: "Having entered the marathon last year, but not being able to run it on the day due to illness, I felt I had unfinished business in Firenze (Florence). Having been forced to sit out the race and watch twelve months ago, I thought the course looked good for a fast time. Michele and I decided to go back, and this year, spurred on by a PB in the tough conditions of the Paris Marathon in April, Michele decided to enter as well. Training and the taper had gone well for me, but Michele had been plagued with illness and injury, and it felt like she began her training as I started my taper! Last year was perfect weather - cool, but sunny and dry - so I didn't hold out much hope of a repeat this year, especially as it was pouring with rain when we arrived on Friday evening, and this kept up through Saturday morning. However, by the time we hit the expo and collected our numbers in the evening, it was at least dry. Sunday dawned overcast, but dry. It was quite humid, and the pavements were still wet and a little greasy feeling, but other than that, it was good running conditions. It was about 10'C at the start of the race, and the trusty Ranelagh vest was perfectly adequate. The course profile is not dissimilar to London in that the first two miles are pretty flat (with a very slight uphill gradient) but then the next two are downhill, dropping about two hundred feet. After that, apart from a couple of bridge/overpass gradients, it is flat. The start is at Piazzale Michelangelo, across the River Arno from the Duomo and Ponte Vecchio, providing a stunning view of Florence to while away the time waiting in the pens for the race start. The distance was marked every kilometer (which was good as they obviously came faster than miles) as well as every 5 miles. The course map is quite astonishing as it travels all over Florence with much twisting and turning. After winding down the hill, there is an out and back west along the south bank of the river, coming back around the Palazzo Pitti, and past the Ponte Vecchio, crossing the river a little futher down. Then follows another out and back, this time east along the north bank. The half way point of the course came at the athletic stadium that had housed the expo the day before. It follows and crosses the railway a couple of times - this is the least interesting part of the route. After that the route heads in to the most spectacular parts of the city, the stunning Duomo, Campanile and Baptistery, through Piazza della Republica, and out towards a third (different) out and back along the river, this time heading west along the north side, which begins at the 30k point. There follows about four miles through a park emerging back by the 30k mark which gave a boost knowing that you are half an hour ahead of all the people just beginning this loop. Again, like London, the best was saved for last, along the river to the Ponte Vecchio, sharp left and round to the Palazzo Vecchio, Loggia Dei Lanzi and the Uffizi Gallery, and back up to the Duomo and the 40k mark. The 25 mile marker was at the Palazzo del Bargello, and from there it was just a case of gritting the teeth for the final push, back to the river, and round to the finish in the spectacular Piazza Santa Croce. Half an hour to get through the medal/space-blanket/water/goody bag stuff, and fighting my way back around to the steps of Santa Croce in time to see Michele smash her PB with with 4:00:21. Whilst disappointing (more for me than her) that she just missed breaking the four hour mark, it was tempered with the knowledge that it was a 14 minute PB (off not much training). Then we found out that she just squeaked a Boston qualifying time - after Michele's brief report last week, John Atkinson in Canada kindly e-mailed to advise that Boston allows an extra 59 seconds. Whilst they are very strict on their entry requirements, the allowance for Michele's age group is four hours, which is defined in Boston as under 4:01 - i.e. 4:00:59 or better. Then it was off to share a bottle of Prosecco with a friend of ours from Stragglers who had also done the race, followed by a week relaxing in Tuscany to recover! Next year will be the 25th running of this marathon, and they promise it will be a special one. We would certainly recommend it". 1 P Ngeny (Kenya) 2.12.50 (chip time 2.12.50) 297 Martin Halvey 2.59.33 (2.58.55) 966 Andy Hayward 3.20.01 (3.19.19) 3639 Michele Gibson 4.01.59 (4.00.21) ALAN IN CYPRUS Alan Davidson reports on his latest foreign jaunt: "It was a shock to the system having left home the day before at 04.30 for a sub-zero Gatwick to be running the Aphrodite Half Marathon in Cyprus in 75F warmth, my first half for nearly three years. It is a boring course made more so by removing the attractive run round Pafos Harbour but I was pleased (and surprised) having started steadily to finish quite strongly for 3rd 0/60 prize in 1.39.46 (almost inevitably beaten by two Germans). Kath Bailey was 2nd female in 1.18.39. The Keo Challenge over two dry but cloudy and breezy days featured 4.5 miles of mainly chalky hills, dry underfoot (34.27) and 5.5 miles of prom/road (39.19) and I finished a close 3rd overall well clear of the rest of the field but somehow on the obscure handicap system well adrift of the field (obviously not done by the Ken Powley of Cyprus!)". UPDATE FROM CANADA John Atkinson wtites: "I set four 10k PBs during the summer, my best now standing at 36:06 (clocked in Portland, Oregon on Sep 9). I then ran the Victoria Marathon four weeks later, which didn't go to plan (crawled home in 3:17 having run the first 10k comfortably at around 2:50-pace) but am now back in shape after healing from that. Have a couple more races to go this year (XCs over the next two weekends) and will then begin marathon training for Boston in mid-December. I qualified in Oct 2006 with the 3:04 I ran in Victoria". FINALLY... "A touch of inspiration to help you on these cold, wet and windy evenings," writes Pete Mulholland: http://youtube.com/watch?v=5aucOyuCyW8.