A fairly quiet month for most of you, unless of course you’re in pursuit of making the 100 marathon club by this time next year! Yes that man Paul Blackwell notched up another 5 this month taking him to 55 in all, with 2 in the last few days, well done Paul, we are all fully behind you.
The Bentley half was our major highlight, once again a great team effort from all who ran and assisted in providing a quality and safe race for the hundreds that took part.
I always feel very proud to be a part of our half, Russ does a fantastic job of organising us all, John and Sue work wonders in the hall, Luke and Des ruled the kitchen, the cake display was amazing, our water station entertained the runners, while our marshal’s kept them going, and with Rodger, Paul, and Michael working hard to set up the race, another successful half was achieved, so thank you and well done to all who helped out.
Our runners Charlie, Barry, Matt PB, Simon PB and silver standard, Andy PB, Richard PB, Johnathon, Keith, and Mark all enjoyed the course, even with the wind, and yet 4 of them smashed their best times, and Scott had the pleasure of being part of a successful world record attempt for pushing a wheelchair.
Two XC races finished off the season this month, and I’m delighted with our 4th place finish overall, ahead of Harwich by a large margin and so close to 3rd, thank you to all who took part this year, Eric stood in the cold at everyone to take our scores, Phil and Mark assisted on the camera, and thanks to our bakers the cake never ran out. On the running side, we had 19 at Springfield and 4 juniors, and then 25 at Ipswich and 6 juniors, 6 of us managed to run them all, well done to Russ and Martin, along with Mark, Rob, and Patrick who all improved positions as the season progressed. Congratulations to Harrison who ran them all for the juniors, Daniel, and Michael ran in 5, and with Tommy and Harry supporting throughout the season, a good year for our upcoming youngsters.
A very successful year remaining in pool A and I have to say apart from Harwich the courses have been good and the weather very kind to us all.
In other races, John Bush ran the Tarpley 10, with Paul Hollidge in the 20, Rodger and Paul C successfully completed another trail marathon this time in the new forest, Andy Stephens completed his 2nd half of the month, a long way from us in Kilimanjaro, and in Park run Lee Clarkson and Richard Moor hit the big 50 while young Harrison achieved a new PB.
Wednesday night’s training will remain as a structured session only, from now until the daylight improves sufficiently for us to venture back into the lanes, With Paul continuing to give us a Yoga session every other week.
At the end of this month Des and Theresa will be hosting the brilliant bunny doubles on Easter Monday 28th March, so if you can make it to what has become a great family event for one and all, then let Paul C know ASAP.
Club Champs is well underway now, so don’t be shy and get your race times on an email to Phil for verification, especially now as we head into a busy month of races.
A tough call this month as we had some excellent personal best’s at the Bentley half, for me though with two XC races this month, my thoughts turn to those who represent our club and push hard to improve in every race, and with a number of you completing all six and improving throughout this makes my choice even more difficult.
My choice however is Matthew Knowles, he was unfortunate to DNF at Hadleigh last month, but stormed back at Springfield and Ipswich and has scored for the club in every race he has completed, a true gentlemen off the course, full of guts and determination when competing, as I witnessed first-hand at Springfield, he almost fell to the ground pushing himself to the limit to achieve a higher position. He represented us at the southern XC champs, has recently completed a LIRF course and has written our XC race reports this season, a club man through and through and I wish him every success at the Manchester marathon in April.