As spring begins to blossom, road racing has come to life, with many of you appearing from behind those heavy marathon training schedules to take on many of the half marathon’s on offer this month, starting locally Colchester always fields a large Bentley turnout, and once again a number of you turned in some excellent performances, Well done to Tom for smashing his pb by over 4 minutes, Andy Stephens had only just arrived back from Africa the night before and would be excused for taking it easy with an early start, but hell no, he too took down the pb he achieved at the Bentley half , and after his busy schedule is in fine form to tackle London next month. Andy Fuller also ran a new PB, rolling back the years, knocking over 3 minutes off his previous time, not to be out done Luke also knocked 2 minutes off for a new PB, Frank, Charlie, and Darren all improved on times from last year, and that’s not forget our pacers, Ben, Scott, and Lee who all ran within themselves for the benefit of others.
Kevin, Gary, and Jamie ran the north London half the following week and after helping Andy achieve a pb at Colchester, it was Kevin’s turn to assist Jamie notch up a new pb and a Bronze Standard, Keith Oakley, Scott Young, and Paul Hollidge took a trip to the Stowmarket half, for Paul this was his 2nd of the month after completing Liverpool, and for Keith he smashed 14 minutes off with a fantastic sub 2 hour half in 1:58, well done Keith that is massive.
Earlier in the month the Essex 20, full of undulating terrain on a tough 3 lap course, Charlie, Lee, Jamie, and Dave Goldsmith making a welcome return after injury all ran solid training runs in preparation for their upcoming marathons. And talking of Marathon’s that man on a mission Paul Blackwell, continued to rack up the tally, including a double header at Milton Keynes, moving himself up to 60 now, that’s 5 in this month alone, great work Paul.
In other events well done to the 3 amigo’s Paul, Rodger, and Russ who went to Loughborough for a trail marathon they all successfully completed, congratulations to Matt Knowles, Patrick, Ben, and Malcolm for taking part in the Harwich road relay’s, The Sudbury 5 on good Friday saw Matthew Jones lead the Bentley men home with a pb, followed by Mark Ross, Paul Hollidge, and another pb for Luke, well done guys.
Many of you have been filling in the gaps with plenty of park running all over the country this month, which thanks to Meera, receive full attention in her wonderful race reports, but I would like to congratulate Ben for winning the Harwich park run, and a welcome return to park running for Phil Presland after his Achilles injury.
A busy month with the AGM, a warm welcome to my new Vice Captain Andy Fuller, along with the new ladies captain Marion, I look forward to working alongside you both. For John Mckay, it was time to step down, and as I mentioned in my captains report, what a fantastic job he has done as the treasurer, and with 12 years of commitment to the committee I wish him all the best for the future.
Scott Young has become our welfare officer, so if you have any issues that require independent attention then Scott is your man.
With British summer time finally here training will begin to have a different look as the month of April unravels so keep an eye on the website for updates.
The 1st trail run of the year begins on 3rd April at Wrabness, organised as ever by Rodger, with all details on the website.
I would like to welcome some new members as well, Jack Wicks, Adam Gardiner, John Ferdinand, joined the senior ranks, and a welcome return to Derek Johnstone, whom originally joined when I did, so good to see him back at the club.
Congratulations to Andy and Charlie for completing the LIRF course and joining the coaching team.
With Marathon madness about to take over in April, I would like to wish all those running in Manchester, Brighton, London, and even Rome, my best wishes, and I hope having done all the hard work you will succeed in achieving your goal.
Gary Hill is running the Brighton Marathon for the Children’s Society and if you wish to donate then please follow the following link: https://www.justgiving.com/Gary-Hill14
What a month many of you have had and I look forward to seeing more improvement as the racing season hots up in the coming months, tougher than ever with some cracking performances from Luke, and Keith, however although this guy was a little disappointed with his Essex 20 run, a week later he paced Andy to a new pb, at Colchester, and then followed that up with a new pb himself at the North London half, combined with a Bronze standard.
With a marathon just around the corner he has good reason to run full of confidence and self belief.
Congratulations to Jamie Neill, the happy hammer, blowing bubbles for 26.2 miles all the way to Manchester.