Newsdesk 2019

 RANELAGH HARRIERS E-NEWS # 544           10th March 2019
 Editor: Steve Rowland
 mailto: sandsrowland@btinternet.com  

 HEADLINE NEWS                                                                     
 *  Ranelagh women finish 42nd in the National Championships, men’s team
 *  Laura Blazey and Ian Kenton lead our teams
 *  Ranelagh women place 7th in their final Surrey League race and finish 6th
 *  Ranelagh easily wins the Pelling Ratcliff Cup mob match against
     Blackheath and Bromley
 *  Nick Impey runs sub-2.30 at the Tokyo Marathon
 *  Clutton Cup 10 miles Handicap on March 16th
 *  Ellis and Dysart Cups races on March 30th, to include the club junior
 *  Baker Cup 3 miles road Handicap on April 6th
 *  Book now for our presentations evening on April 6th
 *  Wyn Williams bench dedication 
 *  Trophy Holders – please return them to Ted Mockett as soon as possible
 *  Social Media editors and moderators needed
 *  Kit sale still on

 Our very popular former Hon Sec Wyn Williams sadly passed away just over a
 year ago. Wyn’s wife Linda has kindly donated a new bench in his memory, to
 stand outside the clubhouse, and on Tuesday 5th March a short ceremony to
 dedicate it was held just before everyone went off training. Our President
 Becky made a moving speech to which Linda replied. Some appropriate words
 are on the bench together with Wyn’s name:
 Run Often
 Run Long
 But never outrun
 Your joy of running.     

 If you are the current holder of any of the club’s trophies can you please
 arrange to return it (POLISHED PLEASE!) to our Trophies Steward Ted Mockett
 as soon as possible. We need to gather in all the trophies and get them
 engraved with their new holder’s name before the prize-giving evening at the
 Roebuck on April 6th. We have a lot of trophies to process, so please don’t
 delay. If you have a small trophy you can leave it in the clubhouse safe
 (but be sure to let Ted know it is there!) For the larger trophies, contact
 Ted to make arrangements. His email is tedmockett@hotmail.com.   

 This takes place on Saturday 6th April at the Roebuck on Richmond Hill,
 starting at 7pm. Book your place now – especially if you have a trophy to
 collect! The cost is £25 per head to include a welcoming glass of bubbly,
 free beer while stocks last and a buffet supper. There is a limit of 60, so
 don’t delay. RSVP to Michele Gibson – your glass of bubbly awaits you!
 Please contact Michele at micheleagibson@hotmail.com,  mobile:- 07703
 Cheques payable to Ranelagh Harriers and posted / handed to Ms Michele
 Gibson, c/o Baker Cup Supper, 79 Thames Side, Staines upon Thames, Middlesex
 TW18 2HF or leave in the clubhouse safe with the name Michele Gibson / Baker
 Cup on the envelope. 
 Cash payable to Michele Gibson at the Club on Tuesday and Wednesday nights. 
 BACS Payments - Ranelagh Harriers, Sort Code 401310, Account 12154501 Ref-
 Baker Cup & YOUR NAME

 Looking forward to our two road races – the Ranelagh Richmond Half Marathon
 on Sunday 5th May and the Ranelagh Richmond 10km on Sunday 16th June. A new
 website has been set up for each race -
 ranelagh-half-marathon.co.uk/ and  ranelagh-10k.co.uk/.
 Entries are coming in steadily so if you’re planning to run don’t wait too

 As ever, plenty of marshals are needed for the two road races above. If you
 helped last year we’ll be happy if you can take on the same job again. But
 in any case if you can help in any capacity please contact

 The club junior championships for the Lotinga Cup and the Camilla Cup take
 place on Saturday 30th March in Richmond Park over a 2.7 miles / 4km course.
 Start time is 3pm and all under 20s are welcome. Register on the day at the
 clubhouse or at the start. One week later we have the last club handicap of
 the season, the 3 miles road race for the Baker Cup. Again, all juniors are
 welcome and the Jack Ellicock Trophy goes to the first under 18 to finish.

 All under-18s are welcome. Dates and venues are shown below. Registration
 opens at 6.50pm for a 7.25pm start.
 Pre-registration is necessary and a consent form must be completed for any
 child taking part for the first time. 

 Thursday 25th April at the Hawker Centre
 Thursday 16th May at the Ranelagh Clubhouse
 Thursday 6th June at the Russell School, Petersham
 Thursday 27th June at the Hawker Centre
 Thursday 11th July at the Ranelagh Clubhouse
 Thursday 29th August at the Hawker Centre

 For registration and more details: 

 CLUTTON CUP 10 miles handicap  Saturday 16th March in Richmond Park
 Start time is 2pm. This is our longest club handicap and arguably the
 easiest to win as it usually attracts a fairly small field. All are welcome,
 register at the clubhouse. Note that the course will be flagged but not
 martialled, so please familiarise yourself with it.  Details and map:.  

 ELLIS CUP and DYSART CUP  Saturday 30th March in Richmond Park 
 Start time is 3pm. This is an inter-club race for the Ellis Cup (men) and
 the Dysart Cup (women) . It’s two laps of our old League course, totalling
 about 5.5 miles. Stragglers are current holders of the Dysart Cup while we
 hold the men’s. All are welcome, register on the day. As detailed above, the
 race also incorporates our club junior championships. All under 20s are
 eligible. The juniors will start with the main race but will finish after
 one lap.   

 Our Grand Prix is to include only nine events this year, instead of the
 usual ten. This is because the Elmore 7m and the Elmbridge 10k are on the
 same weekend. The Elmore has consequently been dropped for this year both
 from our GP and from the Surrey Road League. The first event in the Grand
 Prix is the Thames Towpath 10 miles on Sunday 14th April. Details and
 entries:.  Over
 700 entries are already in, including 31 from Ranelagh. The entry limit is
 likely to be reached, so don’t delay. More details about the Grand Prix,
 including the list of races here:.

 This highly popular event has been brought back from the dead and is to take
 place on Sunday October 13th. Entries open in April.

 Anna Bailey writes:
 “The Kendal Mountain Film Festival Tour is coming to Kingston upon Thames.
 Join us to watch 90 minutes of the world's best adventure films - stories of
 talent, endurance and excitement to take your breath away! Ride icy waves in
 sub-zero winter, chase tornados, run in the foothills of the Atlas Mountains
 and mountain bike into the wildest reaches of your imagination. Plus hear
 from the Queen of Adventure - Anna McNuff, whose explorations include
 cycling through each and every state of the USA, running the length of New
 Zealand, and most recently exploring the peaks and passes of The Andes
 mountains! We will also be giving away prizes from our tour sponsors
 including the chance to win a weekend at Kendal Mountain Festival in

 Ed Perry writes:
 “We are looking to build our presence on Social Media to help build
 community within the club, raise awareness of who we are for those
 interested, and promote races. I'm looking to pull together a team from
 across the club to help moderate and produce content that represents
 everything we do. If you'd like to help please drop me an email on

 In the meantime do give us a like or a follow:
 Instagram: @ranelaghharriers

 The following kit items are still available for purchase at just £10:
 Men’s Long Sleeve Tops                                larger sizes
 Men’s Short Sleeve Tops                               limited items
 Ladies’ Fleeces Sizes 8 & 10                         good availability
 Ladies’ Fleeces Sizes 12 and 14                   some availability
 Ladies’ Long/Short Sleeve Tops                    all sizes still available

 The following sizes of Ranelagh Vests are available for a very modest £5:
 Boys’ vests ages 7-8 and 9-10                      good availability
 Ladies’ vests larger sizes                               good availability

 All these kit items are on display at the club house. If you can’t make it
 to the club house on a Tuesday then contact Marianne Malam at
 marianne.malam.flp@gmail.com and she will sort you out. We also plan
 to have the remaining kit on display at the clubhouse for the Clutton Cup on
 Saturday 16 March and the Baker Cup Supper on Saturday 6 April.

 Our new supplier for club singlets, men’s and women’s. is iProsports.
 Details and orders:

 Don’t forget that we meet for a casual drink after training on the first
 Tuesday of each month. Venue is the Roebuck on Richmond Hill. All welcome.

 The club is continuing to subsidise track sessions on Thursday evenings at
 the Osterley track. All groups and all abilities are welcome. The sessions
 are  every Thursday 7.30-8.30pm.  Link to the map is here:

 More details of the following from the men's Captains ranelagh.men@gmail.com
 or the women's Captain / Team Manager  ranelagh.women@gmail.com      

 Saturday 16th March        Clutton Cup 10 miles handicap in Richmond Park.
 2pm start. All welcome, register on the day.

 Saturday 30th March        Inter-club races for the Dysart Cup (women) and
 the Ellis Cup (men) plus club junior championships

 Saturday 6th April            Baker Cup 3 miles road handicap. All welcome,
 register on the day

 Sunday 14th April            Thames Towpath 10 miles  *GP race 1*  Details and entries:. 

 5km parkruns every Saturday at 9am and 2km junior parkruns weekly or monthly
 on Sundays.
 Venues, more details and registration at www.parkrun.com or

 NATIONAL CROSS-COUNTRY CHAMPIONSHIPS  Saturday 23rd February at Harewood,
 Pheidippides reports:
 “Sorley's ‘And we run because we like it / Through the broad bright land’
 could not have been more true at this year's National at Harewood.  An
 unprecedented warm spell in mid-February preceded by dry weather saw
 temperatures of around 17 degrees in Yorkshire and sunlit lush grass with
 not a speck of mud in sight.  The course itself undulated gently for the
 most part and its highest points offered highlights of the vista over the
 stately home and the rolling countryside beyond, while for spectators there
 was the possibility of multiple points of view.  The day as a whole seemed
 to have been very well-organised and thought through, even down to
 Harewood's high priests in high-vis patrolling the perimeters of its sacred
 woods to prevent any defilement.  Of the Ranelagh contingent only the women
 fielded a complete team which was led home by Laura Blazey who thereby wins
 the Aotearoa Trophy. In other events Felix Allen ran for Ranelagh in the
 Under 13 Boys and Tom Armstrong in the Under 15 Boys, both gaining valuable
 experience.  For the senior men, about half of those who had signed up for
 this blue riband event had to withdraw leaving just a happy few (four, in
 fact, but this is a step up on those Nationals in the north where we have
 fielded just one). Ian Kenton took up position at the front of the pen and
 very deservedly was the clear winner of the prestigious Roffey Salver.  Mike
 Peace had decided to make this his last National and, despite some
 difficulties during the first lap, stormed home in style during his final
 mile, thundering past a goodly number of competitors.”

 Senior Women
 1   Emily Hosker Thornhill (AF&D)     28.17      
 2   Philippa Woolven (Wycombe Ph)     28.28      
 3   Jessica Judd (Blackburn)          28.52      
 204 Laura Blazey (Ranelagh)           35.20      
 269 Fanny Vein                        36.23    
 446 Rebecca Northmore                 39.26      
 482 Eugenie McLachlan                 39.59      
 531 Marianne Malam                    40.55    
 Teams (4 to score)              
 1   Leeds City AC         47
 42  Ranelagh Harriers   1401    
 Senior Men
 1    Mahamed Mahamed (Soton)          36.34      
 2    Emile Cairess (Leeds)            36.35      
 3    Carl Avery (Morpeth)             37.04      
 369  Ian Kenton (Ranelagh)            43.42      
 468  Peter Haarer                     44.32    
 1624 Peter Weir                       57.09    
 1929 Mike Peace                       67.16    
 Teams (6 to score)   
 1   Leeds City AC       110              

 Under 13 Boys                                                     
 1   Benjamin Peck (Thetford)          9.51        
 271 Felix Allen (Ranelagh)           12.27        
 Under 15 Boys                
 1   Alexander Thompson (Wharfdale)   13.27   
 142 Tom Armstrong (Ranelagh)         15.23   

 Park, Croydon
 There is invariably a falling away in numbers taking part for the final
 League race, and this one was no exception. Overall headcount at the start
 was only 164, and for various reasons only seven Ranelagh were amongst them.
 This was enough to give us a decent result for the A team, but rather
 scuppered the B team’s chances of a high final position.

 Suzy Whatmough led our team, breaking into the top twenty for the first
 time. Laura Blazey was next almost a minute back, then Fanny Vein, Cordy
 Parker and Sarah Palmer. Alice Forbes and Marianne Malam made up two-fifths
 of a B team. 

 The A team finished 7th on the day and finished up in a highly respectable
 6th place. The Bs were 10th on the day and 7th overall. Thames Hare & Hounds
 took the title while the bottom three places – and therefore facing
 relegation – were filled by Advent Running, West 4 and – somewhat
 surprisingly – Guildford & Godalming who had a disastrous final race.   
 1   Stacey Ward (HHH)         29.36     
 2   Georgie Grgec (HHH)       30.01      
 3   Natalie Seymour (TH&H)    30.09      
 19  Suzy Whatmough (Ranelagh) 32.50      
 29  Laura Blazey              33.43      
 44  Fanny Vein                34.54    
 52  Cordelia Parker           35.24      
 65  Sarah Palmer              36.04        
 79  Alice Forbes              37.10      
 98  Marianne Malam            38.18    
 Teams (5 to score) – A teams only                                           
 Final Overall  – A teams only
  1   Herne Hill Harriers        32      1   Thames Hare and Hounds   295
  2   Thames Hare and Hounds     43      2   Herne Hill Harriers      315
  3   Hercules Wimbledon        149      3   Hercules Wimbledon       594
  4   Dulwich Runners           177      4   Clapham Chasers          651
  5   Fulham Running Club       179      5   Fulham Running Club      665
  6   Belgrave Harriers         187      6   Ranelagh Harriers        676
  7   Ranelagh Harriers         209      7   Belgrave Harriers        713
  8   Clapham Chasers           226      8   South London Harriers    769 
  9   Kent AC                   232      9   Kent AC                  947
 10  South London Harriers      261     10  Epsom & Ewell Harriers   1110 
 11  Epsom & Ewell Harriers     299     11  Dulwich Runners          1157
 12  Reigate Priory AC          364     12  Reigate Priory AC        1357
 13  West 4 Harriers            373     13  Guildford & Godalming AC 1375 
 14  Advent Running             471     14  West 4 Harriers          1768     
 15  Guildford & Godalming AC   589     15  Advent Running           2212 

 B teams
 Final Overall – B teams only 
  1   Thames Hare & Hounds      221       1   Herne Hill H          1165
  2   Herne Hill Harriers       227       2   Thames Hare & Hounds  1369
  3   Dulwich Runners           348       3   Clapham Chasers       1549
  4   Hercules Wimbledon AC     494       4   Dulwich Runners       1979 
  5   Clapham Chasers           498       5   Fulham RC             1992
  6   South London Harriers     528       6   South London H        2001 
 10  Ranelagh Harriers          699       7   Ranelagh Harriers     2127  

 March at Hayes
 Pheidippides reports:
 “In contrast to last week's unseasonable hot and sunny climes, a ferocious
 storm was predicted for the match against Blackheath; and indeed, standing
 at the end of the race deluge after deluge rolled across the field - blue
 vests gusting through the finishing funnel with such ferocity that the
 opposition was blown away.  Both teams were depleted: Ranelagh was missing
 most of its women' section, resting after the final Surrey League fixture on
 the day before, but put out a respectable thirty-nine runners (boosted by
 new member Robert Andrews experiencing something of a baptism of fire in
 terms of cross-country).  Blackheath were able to muster just fifteen
 members.  At 12 a side to score, Blackheath had just one runner making the
 top ten and only four crossing the line ahead of Ranelagh's last counter,
 though the rest of our team contributed to widening the gulf between the
 scores: 310 for the Heathens versus 90 for Ranelagh (and an unbroken 'blue
 wave' from 24th to 36th).  Up at the front, the aged Haarer led for a
 nanosecond before being overhauled by an ambitious Mockett who was in turn
 replaced after a mile or so by McDaid and Leyshon.  This dynamic duo battled
 for the F.B. Thompson medal which ultimately was bagged by Eirin McDaid,
 having pulled four seconds clear of Marc by the time that he reached the
 tape. Haarer in 5th place won the Harry Sheer Trophy for the first over 50
 to finish.
 We should not forget that historically the Heathens have turned out in might
 and have proved hard to beat - the score-line after 99 matches credits us
 with only 29 wins, eight of these achieved consecutively since 2011/12, so
 we still have a lot of catching up to do (if the unbroken run were to
 continue then I would be a nonagenarian before we achieved parity).  Talking
 of history, this was our first outing on Blackheath's new course.  Veterans
 of previous matches will recall the mixed terrain of the old route which
 varied from filth to tarmac.  Also seared into the grey cells will be the
 sharp undulation, the field of frisky horses, and the element of dicing with
 death during the various crossings of increasingly busy roads.  In view of
 the latter, Blackheath devised an entirely new course (even the perilous
 early fence crossing was scrapped) and although lacking some of the variety,
 charm and excitements of its predecessor the general feeling after the race
 was that this was a good route.  It comprises two laps through a wood with
 the odd bit of plough and grass thrown in for good measure, not forgetting
 some logs to vault.  The surface is now soft and suitable for spikes all the
 way round - surely a welcome change [if wearing spikes, that is].  In
 addition to the new course Blackheath has decided to abandon its old
 clubhouse and to base its home cross country fixtures at the sports ground
 of the Met Police.  The facilities provided were good but one couldn't help
 but feel a bit of nostalgia for the old HQ and the irreplaceable patina it
 had accrued over the decades (I am not referring to the plumbing) - I will
 miss it.”

 We had the luxury of two reports for the Blackheath race. Here’s skipper
 Phil Killingley’s take on it:
 “Blackheath and Bromley changed the race day to Sunday a number of years ago
 to get more runners out, so a good turnout of Ranelites was blown over to
 South East London by Storm Freya with a job to do.  On the way over, some of
 us passed happy Surrey League hunting grounds on Mitcham Common, Lloyd Park
 (and on the way back Streatham Common). Could we defeat the might of
 Blackheath, who are well well ahead in the all-time mob match tally vs

 The venue was the Met Police club - Blackheath having sold their premises to
 help upgrade their track, it seems.  We were told to hand in our valuables
 to avoid them being stolen, which seemed a bit ironic given we were on the
 Peelers’ patch. A 1-mile jog to the course ensued, and already it looked
 like Ranelagh had superior numbers – were the opposition all hiding behind
 the ancient church waiting for the 5 minute call?  

 The answer was no - 15 Heathens to 39 Ranelites made it almost a foregone
 conclusion on the start line.  And when one of their top runners slipped and
 crashed out on a corner in mile one, things got even worse for the hosts. 

 Rain and slippery mud was the order of the day. Eirin McDaid, in pink gloves
 and black tights, skipped balletically through it all to land a rare
 individual win.  At the finish line he claimed it was the furthest he'd run
 since 2008 (well, editorial license), so injured has he been in the
 in-between years. Marc Leyshon and Graham Brook made it a complete podium
 for the Blue and Amber.  

 The ladies also netted a complete podium for Ranelagh - well done Anna
 Reichwald, Carol Aikin and Claire Warner, all within 2 minutes of each
 other.  (Is it unchivalrous of me to mention that there were no Blackheath
 ladies running? OK, sorry!).  In any case, all our runners performed bravely
 in treacherous conditions, with log jumps, boggy bits and cambered
 downhills. A superb blue wave of 13 runners in a row started with Eirin's
 brother Sean (far more suitably dressed for cross-country) and ended with
 Robert Andrews, who Ranelagh welcomes for his first match and sincerely
 hopes he hasn't been put off for ever. 

 Mark Herbert moves onto the top page of all time mob appearances with 30.
 Chris Camacho and Peter Haarer both turned out to stay level pegging at 53.
 David Wright meanwhile and Mike Peace move onto 175 (top) and 144
 appearances respectively. Check your stats
 http://www.ranelagh-harriers.com/ranelaghstats/mob_att_.html.  Thanks as
 always to our brave, if somewhat blue round the edges, supporters.” 

 There are lots of photos on the Blackheath website here:
 http://www.bandbhac.org.uk/ranelagh%203-03-19.html#photos. They give a
 deceptive impression of the conditions, but you can judge how wet it really
 was by the large quantity of missing numbers. The ‘heathens officials did
 well to produce an accurate result.  

  1  Eirin McDaid        RAN     47.14    SM  
  2  Marc Leyshon        RAN     47.18    SM  
  3  Graham Brook        RAN     47.43    SM  
  4  Ted Mockett         RAN     48.02    M40+
  5  Peter Haarer        RAN     48.28    M50+
  6  Luca Ercolani       BBHAC   48.43    M45+
  7  Phil Killingley     RAN     48.54    SM  
  8  Jonathan Smith      RAN     49.16    SM  
  9  Mark Herbert        RAN     50.28    SM  
 10  Louis Randall       RAN     50.54    SM  
 11  Dave Lawley         RAN     51.19    SM  
 12  Paul Sharpe         BBHAC   52.01    SM  
 13  Finlan Parkinson    BBHAC   52.51    M40+
 14  James Whistler      RAN     53.17    SM  
 15  Steve Hough         BBHAC   53.31    M45+
 16  Richard Kimber      RAN     55.13    SM  
 17  Roy Reeder          RAN     55.38    M50+
 18  Vaughan Ramsay      RAN     55.44    M45+
 19  Paul Kerekgyarto    BBHAC   55.57    M40+
 20  James Ritchie       RAN     56.02    M45+
 21  Steve Pairman       BBHAC   56.18    M55+
 22  Richard Willoughby  RAN     56.26    M50+
 23  Clayton Aves        BBHAC   56.40    M50+
 24  Sean McDaid         RAN     57.00        
 25  Hadi Khatamizadeh   RAN     57.05    M40+
 26  Alex Ring           RAN     57.22    M45+
 27  Dave Wright         RAN     58.13    M60+
 28  Chris Owens         RAN     59.05    M65+
 29  Marcus Atkins       RAN     59.15    M55+
 30  Stewart Anderson    RAN     59.26    M50+
 31  Bruce McLaren       RAN     60.50    M50+
 32  Niall O'Connor      RAN     61.19    M40+
 33  Simon Hedger        RAN     61.43    M55+
 34  Phil Roberts        RAN     62.11    M50+
 35  David Powell        RAN     62.33    M60+
 36  Robert Andrews      RAN     63.18        
 37  James Unwin         BBHAC   63.58    M55+
 38  Mark Ellison        BBHAC   64.14    M55+
 39  Stephen Aikin       RAN     64.41    M50+
 40  Robert Brown        BBHAC   65.14    M65+
 41  Mike Peace          RAN     66.24    M65+
 42  Jason Short         BBHAC   66.39    M45+
 43  Paul Wapshott       RAN     67.26    M50+
 44  Adrian Stocks       BBHAC   68.11    M45+
 45  Andy Bickerstaff    RAN     69.09    M55+
 46  Chris Read          RAN     69.43    M55+
 47  Michael Osborne     RAN     71.40    M55+
 48  Jim Phelan          BBHAC   73.22    M70+
 49  David Leal          BBHAC   73.28    M60+
 50  Anna Reichwald      RAN     73.53    L55+
 51  Carol Aikin         RAN     75.31    L50+
 52  Claire Warner       RAN     75.59    SL  
 53  Chris Camacho       RAN     83.35    M45+
     Dan Kennedy         BBHAC    DNF     SM  
 MATCH RESULT (Scoring 12 a side)    
 1   Ranelagh Harriers           90      
 2   Blackheath & Bromley H&AC  310 

 LAST FRIDAY OF THE MONTH 5km  Friday 22nd February in Hyde Park
 1   J Tipper (Kent)           15.42
 152 Matthew Aikin             21.27
 238 Carol Aikin               24.52
 271 Alan Davidson             28.45

 RUNTHROUGH LEE VALLEY VELO PARK 10km   Saturday 23rd February
 1    W Brahimi (unatt)        32.45
 80   Roger Wallace            56.39 

 DASH FOR THE SPLASH 10km  Sunday 24th February on Wimbledon Common
 1   M Jones (TH&H)            36.32
 62  Martin Harris             47.05
 80  Steve Aikin               48.47
 176 Carol Aikin               56.50

 TOKYO MARATHON  Sunday 3rd March
 Nick Impey – now resident in Singapore – made the journey to Tokyo well
 worthwhile by hacking some nine minutes off his personal best. In a
 remarkably well-judged race he ran faster and faster as the race progressed,
 recording negative splits and saving his fastest 5km for the section leading
 up to 40k, despite headwinds. He was the first Brit to finish and the reward
 for his efforts was a great sub-2.30 chip time. Nick writes: “Training
 really paid off and I felt good the whole way. It did feel like an ideal
 run, although it rained the entire morning and was so cold I could barely
 open my gels! At times it reminded me of some of the Surrey League XC
 Paul Doyle reports:
 “The Tokyo Marathon is the most recent addition the Abbott Marathon Major
 series and I went there in search of my Six Star finisher medal given those
 in recognition of the Air Miles (and a few road miles)  they have travelled
 in running London, Berlin, Boston, New York, Chicago and Tokyo Marathons.
 The journey started five years ago when I had a shot at running a decent
 Boston Marathon, as often happens, blew up, but finished in a respectable
 2:55. After that, injury has limited my training and I’ve run marathons more
 for enjoyment than fast times.  Tokyo is the most difficult of all marathon
 majors to get into, it is also the most different, the Japanese culture is
 fascinating, extreme politeness, organization and adherence to rules are a
 feature of the culture, pre-race and race (although the expo is less well
 developed). The course is flat, skirting around the hills of Tokyo. I would
 rate it faster than London, not as fast as Berlin or Chicago. There is no
 racing blue line, which makes Ranelagh’s Nick Impey’s run of 2:30 all the
 more impressive. There are about three out and back sections within U turns
 which would slow the faster runners by a few seconds, but for people like me
 offer the opportunity to see the sharp end of the field. The roads are wide
 with only very mild short hills. The drinks stations are well placed and
 easy to use. They had the best drinks of all the majors, ‘Porcari Sweat’ was
 amazing, they had special cups that were easy to drink from on the move. The
 volunteers were enthusiastic, smiling and efficient. Support was good, but I
 couldn’t understand their shouts. The start was surrounded by skyscrapers,
 the finish was at the Imperial Palace, but perhaps less impressive than
 London or Berlin. As luck would have it the weather was the most perfect I
 have ever run a marathon in. It was about 7-8 degrees, with light rain all
 the way, horrible for anything else than marathon running, but just right,
 so as not to overheat or sweat. I ran the race with the 3:30 pacers, they
 were incredibly reliable, with 10k to go I still felt good, so I kicked on,
 finishing in 3:25:43. After the finish it is traditional to turn around and
 bow at the finish, after that it was a cold long walk to the changing area.
 Everyone was wonderfully helpful, perhaps the most memorable of all the
 majors I have run.” 

 1    B Legese (Ethiopia)     2:04.46  
 156  Nick Impey              2:29.51
 4292 Paul Doyle              3:27.36 

 THAMES RIVERSIDE 20 miles  Sunday 3rd March at Fulham
 This seems to have been a popular event for those with marathons on their
 minds. Tom Fairbrother was an excellent 9th overall. Suzy Whatmough and
 Laura Blazey were 12th and 16th women, both the day after competing in the
 Surrey League race at Lloyd Park!

 1   R Laing (Kent)           1:58.23
 9   Tom Fairbrother (Rane)   2:07.26
 12  E Davis (Ward Pk)        2:10.21  (1st woman)
 70  Suzy Whatmough           2:29.23
 81  Laura Blazey             2:34.34
 133 Richard Gurd             2:45.06
 143 Kathy Henry              2:46.59
 220 Jarryd Hillhouse         3:03.20
 247 Aoife Kilpatrick         3:11.07
 250 Siobhan Sharp            3:12.49
 255 Margie Harrison          3:14.30
 1   T Epton (Soton Uni)      35.22
 293 Roger Wallace            57.16

 RUNTHROUGH VICTORIA PARK 10km   Saturday 9th March
 1   J Elliott (Clapham)      35.01
 329 Roger Wallace            56.18 

 VITALITY BIG HALF MARATHON  Sunday 10th March in London
 Simon Martin reports:
 “I ran as a Runner’s World x New Balance 2:00 pacer. Miserable conditions
 pre-race in the start pen - cold, wet and windy. Sunny spells and very gusty
 during the race itself. I had a solid pacing group with many holding the
 pace and finishing with me. Nice and easy HM trot for me with consistent 5k
 The high winds caused one or two ancillary events to be cancelled on safety
 grounds. But conditions seemed fast for the runners with many a PB set. Our
 first finisher was Ross Macdonald who found his excellent 1:12.45 clocking
 only good for 92nd place.
 1    Mo Farah (N&EB)         1:01.15
 53   Charlotte Purdue (AFD)  1:10.38  (1st woman)
 92   Ross Macdonald (Rane)   1:12.45
 194  Tom Fairbrother         1:16.24
 287  Kris Davidson           1:18.29
 2516 Richard Gurd            1:40.29
 3295 Jarryd Hillhouse        1:44.34
 4935 Aoife Kilpatrick        1:52.23
 5223 Hadi Khatamizade        1:53.46
 6544 Simon Martin            1:59.21
 6631 Claire Warner           1:59.44     
 SURREY HALF MARATHON  Sunday 10th March at Woking
 1    P Pollock (Kent)        1:06.23
 28   Ian Kenton (Rane)       1:16.39
 45   E Davis (Ward Pk)       1:20.08  (1st woman)
 46   Ed Perry                1:20.11
 75   James Winch             1:22.02
 347  Alice Forbes            1:32.43
 572  William Griffin         1:37.40
 2963 John Herriott           2:15.05     

 SURREY 5km  Sunday 10th March at Woking
 1   R Rivero (G&G)           17.37
 5   K Hopkins (Woking)       18.53  (1st woman)
 28  Becky Curtis-Hall        22.50
 50  Rob Curtis               24.17

 RUNTHROUGH FINSBURY PARK 10km   Sunday 10th March
 1   D Caruso (unatt)         35.01
 115 Roger Wallace            61.17 

 parkrun results...
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