It’s been a chilly month and a long one since Christmas…it’s a time where many of us contemplate our 2019 events/races and for others cracking on with spring marathon training. It’s good to see those Bentley buffs coming in good use with the frosty weather…

New Members:

We welcome Kevin Pyle as our newest male. Kevin is a keen boot-camper with an interest in trail running. I’m sure we will see more and more of him in the coming months. The GBRC trail run series is one of the best things that we do at Bentley so I know you will love it!


Highlights from January…….very quiet month but many of you turned out for Ipswich XC (men finishing 4th) and represented blue in the best way possible. Scorer’s included: Adam Smith 26th, David Wright 35th, Tim Ballard 49th, Charlie Keitch 71st, Mark Jaspar 77th, Dan Clayton 84th, Robin Oakley 91st and Andy Hart in 95th place. Well done all! Paul Blackwell had the right idea by travelling to Florida for the Walt Disney marathon earning an awesome medal! Scott Young aka ‘VC’ continued his fine 5k running form to finish 22:06 at Durham parkrun.

Benfleet was the popular choice on the menu for the third weekend of January. Cracking royal blue / Bentley blue t shirt this year. Benfleet is an unforgiving tough course but with the ultimate in bragging rights…..forget fast and flat…this is where the glory is. You will always remember the year you ran Benfleet. If it’s on your wishlist then consider it for 2020! Dave Jones visited his old nemesis once again and loved every minute of it including the hills. Tim Ballard finished 30thearning a bronze standard and club champs spot, not to mention the coveted gold Benfleet medal. Charlie Keitch also finished top 100 for a gold medal. John Booty decided to run a ‘short distance’ (for him) race to finish in 2:06:26 and grab a silver medal! Paul ‘pb man’ Hollidge decided it had been far too long since he got a pb so travelled to Folksworth 15 where he finished in 1:48:28!! 15 minute pb, silver standard and club champs. How does this man do it!? Well we spoke about this at length a few weeks ago and Paul puts it down to concentrating on structured strength and conditioning. Something very underrated by many people…. Paul got in the gym and started lifting weights to improve his flexibility, range, strength, recovery time etc. He is a ‘running example’ of what you can accomplish when you train the right way. Hats off Hollidge awesome stuff.

The last weekend in January saw many turn out for my own trail run in aid of the charity Sense which was a fundraising event for the London Marathon. It was a huge success and the winners of the 5 mile route were Ben Ficken and Janice, winner of the 9 mile route was Graham Semple, and finally the winners of the 14 route were Paul Connell and Tim Ballard. I couldn’t have done it without so many of you turning out to run and those who help set up the event so thanks to all! A special mention to Lex who helped me bake over 100 portions of apple crumble the day before her hip op. Amazing…and as ever Paul Carlisle for his everlasting generosity and help. I will host this run again next winter (GBRC only) with several distance options as this seemed very popular. Watch this space…


Luke’s charity trail run

Well done to Rob Ferguson who finished in sub 20 minutes at Harwich parkrun and 2ndplace!! Amazing pace and I echo Charlie Keitch in the hope you fancy some muddy XC running in February! Well done indeed.

Medal of the month:

As always we have some lovely medals earned by the Bentley men this month…


Top left: New Year Marathon, Top right, Disney World Marathon, Bottom Left: Gloucester Half/Mara/Ultra, Bottom middle: East Hanningfield Trail marathon, Bottom right: Ranscombe Ramble.

It seems that most of the best medals are from marathon festival / challenge events this month and I think it has to go to…the Disney World Mara medal. I’ve heard that if you run a half marathon and marathon back to back to earn a third medal….Daffy duck or Donald duck or something….one day!!…or maybe in Paris instead!

Coaches Corner:

This month I wanted to do a shout out to Rodger and the efforts he puts into training. Whether he’s leading and LIRFing a hill session or attending himself he always puts in 100%. He goes under the radar and always offers help and support. You will often see him racing Carlisle (and beating him haha) on the uphill efforts and at the end of the session he always thanks you and shakes your hand – a true gentleman. He’s in training for an ultra (around everything else he does for the club) and I wish him the best of luck I’m sure he will smash it. Kevin Pyle also put 100% in to his first training session with us and from the sounds of things will come back for lots more! Keep up the good work there’s lots of sessions to experience.

For this months topic I wanted to pass on some knowledge from the London Marathon organisers about Knee and Back pain. They have teamed up with a professional physio company who have some useful videos on their website that may help you. If you’re injured then ALWAYS seek medical advice or get a sports massage. Don’t take it lightly you may have a small niggle or something more serious:


Knee pain:
If you have knee pain these videos could be for you. Specialist Physiotherapists will guide you through exercises to prevent and treat knee pain. The videos include exercises you can do at your desk, at home or in the gym as well as sports-specific exercises.

Knee symptoms include different types of pain including sharp, shooting, burning, throbbing or stabbing pains. These symptoms can be constant or intermittent (i.e. come and go). Pain in the knee can also refer from your back or hip joints and, if so, you may also be getting pins and needles, tingling, weakness, numbness, other strange sensations or pain in one or both of your legs and feet. When pain comes on slowly, most common problems that cause pain at the front of the knee are patello-femoral pain, patella tendinopathy (previously called tendinitis) or fat pat irritation. If the pain comes on slowly and is at the side of the knee then it could be ITB friction syndrome.Pain is down the front of the shins it could be what is commonly called shin splints. If you fell, had an accident or the pain came on suddenly, then you may have torn a ligament, cartilage or other structure like a meniscus or even suffered a fracture. In that case you need to get the knee assessed by a Physiotherapist, Doctor or Osteopath as soon as possible! 

Back pain:
Can include different types of pain including sharp, shooting pains, burning, throbbing or stabbing pains and can be constant or intermittent – i.e. come and go. You may also be getting pins and needles, tingling, weakness, numbness, other strange sensations or pain in one or both of your legs and feet. Pain along the pathway of the sciatic nerve which runs down the back of your leg is called ‘sciatica’ and has a number of causes. 

Pain caused by issues in the lower back can move around which is confusing for the person experiencing it, but very common. The cause of your back symptoms will range from a muscle strain to a facet joint, or disc injury like a disc prolapse or disc bulge, or problems with the joint between the pelvis and the spine called the sacroiliac joint or SIJ.

Even if you have not had a traumatic injury it is essential that you get pain and other symptoms assessed by a Physiotherapist or Osteopath, so that you do not do further damage.

Next months topic: TBC

Upcoming races/Events:

Many of these have entries still available (some are a little further away for those that like some race tourism!):

Feb 10 – XC (Duke Street, Hadleigh) / Olympic Park half marathon / Greenwich Park Winter 10k

Feb 14 – Valentines Run Challenge (Dover, Kent)

Feb 17 – XC (Gosfield School) / Company of Runners – Lamarsh Lionheart 5 mile trail / Hare & Tortoise – Rayne Challenge Anniversary Race / Street Child Craft Half marathon (Wimbeldon)

Feb 24 – Tarpley 10/20miler

Mar 1 – Men’s GBRC Winter Meal (more details below)

Mar 2 – Chilly Chappel Beer Run*

*Trail run that ends with free entry and a beer glass to Chappel winter beer festival and yes I will be there!!

Men’s GBRC Winter Meal:

The annual men’s meal is upon us (formerly known as the XC meal however any man can come so it shall be known this year as the winter meal). Scott and I have decided on the Quayside Gurkha restaurant in the Hythe, Haven Road CO28HT on Fri March 1st at 8pm. They have plenty of parking. On the night we will be voting for XC runner of the year.There’s enough space for 40 and we can go into town after if anyone fancies a few more beers.

I’m in talks with the owner to do a set menu / fixed cost. Either way it’s going to be great value for money. I’ll ask for menu options nearer the time. Have a think and click ‘going’ on the Facebook group so we can confirm numbers:

Or… email me at Any questions just ask. 


We’ve had some impressive performances this month and a cracking start to the club champs over the past 2 months. Benfleet in particular was a race that saw many of you accomplish and smash your goals. Top efforts from Charlie, Paul Davison, Paul Hollidge and Tim Ballard this month to continue their fine running form. Our own Polish Ironman aka Tomasz also smashed Benfleet and shows us that his injury is long behind him….those new trail shoes seem to be working very well. 2019 will be very exciting for Tomasz I know it. This month however Scott and I wanted to focus on a man that gave an excellent performance at Benfleet, claiming a coveted silver medal….he’s set goals for individual races and tackled them well over the last 12 months. His efforts at Chamonix were truly impressive and show what iron grit and mental fortitude he has to complete such a distance. I know he has aspirations to qualify for the CCC in Chamonix one day. He’s turned his sights to the Laugavegur ultra in Iceland later this year (work permitting) and im sure he will smash this! This man has endurance and speed….plus he loves a bit of canicross… man….


Congratulations John Booty you are runner of the month!