Men’s Newsletter April 2017

Hi Gents,


What a month of running from so many of you. To start with I would like to thank Andy for last month’s newsletter. Now, working through the distances, I shall start with the 5 mile at Sudbury, I haven’t seen Dave Wright for a while but delighted his XC form has continued on the road with an excellent sub 30 minute run on a tough course.  With spring in the air and plenty of spring in his feet ‘Our’ Eric returned to racing with two excellent runs in the 5 and Bromley 10k, Joined by both  John Bush and Luke Groves at both events. Luke also hit a pb at Bromley along with the ever improving Ryan Day, and Paul Davidson. Great to see so many turn out and support this local 10k event. I really enjoyed it last year and it was nice to see one of our new members Neil Robbins run it and complete the course in less than 50 minutes. Completing the 10k line up, Charlie Keitch paced Matthew Jones to a PB in Brighton.  Well done gents.

Moving up the distances and some really quick times over 13.1 miles from recent ROM’s  Tim Ballard in Norwich, and Ryan in Bungay, earning them both Bronze standards,  supported again, funnily enough, by John and Luke, on what I’m told was a barmy day in the sunshine for running, making those times even more impressive on hilly courses.

Onto the marathon men of the month first up was Frank Gardiner who was very close to a Bronze, and 3rd in his age category, finishing in 4:44 at Bungay, which is a tough hilly course. Well done Frank. There was a great 3:48 from Andy Stephens in Manchester and the following week Gary Parker nailed a PB in Brighton with a 3:49 finish.  Then we were off to Germany and unfortunately injury prone Steve Black had to pull out at mile 7, but Jamie Neil, with little training, had a safe journey round in 4:44.

Next up was the one we all strive to be a part of.  London is massive and our boys all got round and should be so proud to have run it. Each had different goals – Rob Blackman completed the course in 4:18, poor Rodger Alexander  was hit by a bug just two days before, but this man is strong and tough, and he dug deep to finish in 4:23, Graham Semple had to withdraw last year, and wasn’t sure for a long time if he could run again, let alone run the marathon, but he did it in a very solid 3:49, and claimed a silver standard. Paul Hollidge has been improving this year and he didn’t disappoint with a PB of 3:40 with almost identical splits, and only 5 runners passing him in the final 7.2k, which tells me there is more to come.  Ryan Day, following in dad’s footsteps, and starting way back in the field  flew past over 15,000 runners in the firstt 35k, which is an incredible effort, and although it took its toll in the last few miles, a marathon debut of 3:14 is mighty impressive along with a Bronze club standard.  And finally to Dave Goldsmith –  what a man. Last year he achieved his ambition with a sub 3, illness in training made it look tough to complete this year , but he didn’t half give it a go.He had solid even splits, and only 30 passed him on the final 7.2k. He was so close, finishing in 3 hours dead. Not to be out done marathon man, AKA Paul Blackwell, notched another 4 on the bedpost after a lengthy lay off moving up to 127 marathons!

Club News

I’ve missed a lot of with the AGM, bunny doubles, and trail run, but well done to Tim taking first place with Claire at the bunny doubles.

Well done also to Paul, accompanied by Joe, who took maximum points in the first trail run. Race 2 is on the 21st May, over at Martlesham Heath, so keep an eye out for updates, and let Rodger know if you are going.

I have just returned from the club’s Thetford trip, which was a great success for all who went, and would highly recommend to anyone who, like me, hasn’t been before. There were activities to suit all, including mobility scooter rides, which Rodger could sell tickets for, it was that popular!

Micky Edwards 5k returns in May with 3 races, on the 3rd, 17th and 24th.

A date for your diary is the GBRC Awards Night, taking place at Wivenhoe House, on Saturday 25th November, and hopefully no XC to follow on Sunday!

And if you are extremely well organised you can book yourself on the VLM coach – 22nd April 2018! Just let Eric know.

Outstanding Performances

  • Ryan Day – VLM – debut Marathon, Bronze Standard, very fast time, 3:14.
  • Graham Semple – VLM – debut Marathon, Silver Standard, great time, 3:49.
  • Dave Goldsmith – VLM – big and bold attempt at another sub 3, well paced throughout and although he achieved it last year, still a Gold standard run.


Some quality running achieved throughout various distances this month, and with London being the big event one man stood out for Andy and I.


Rehydrating after the race

Having to defer with injury is common for us runners, but when you’re left facing a long lay off, an operation, and plenty of doubt as to whether you will run 5 miles, let alone a marathon, then this guy’s achievement is all the more special.

Graham is a long standing member, giving his time to benefit the club as a committee member, and always gives 100% in training and races. He was determined to not just get round, but run well, and he certainly did that, achieving a silver standard in his first marathon in an excellent 3:49. Congratulations to Graham Semple, our runner of the month for April.