Another month has gone by and another late newsletter – I seem to have been a tad pre-occupied this week sorry! It has been another busy month of some excellent running across a whole range of distances again. Some of you started the month by doing the Stansted Stagger which looked like another great LDWA event which was then followed up by the 2nd of the Chairman’s challenge races with the Winter Tanners, then there was the Benfleet 15 which looked a super muddy event this year, a few half marathons Martin Owen heading out to Farnborough and showing that his comeback is well and truly on, I myself did 6.5 laps of Victoria Park with Charlie Keitch (well I saw him when he ran past me!) and there were plenty of Parkruns and other races thrown in! As well as all that we had the first cross country of the year over at Writtle where we had another great result and sees us currently sitting in 4th place in the league with it looks like 2 fixtures to go. Well done all the cross country runners we’ve seen a fantastic turnout yet again.
It was good to note that a lot of you turned up for the first of three coaching sessions with Olympian Paul Evans which coach Caroline has organised the second of these is coming up on the 16th February, this will be on our home turf of Great Bentley. It would be good to get as many of you coming along for the second event as from what I have heard the first session was really useful, the final one is on the 1st March again on home soil. This session is top and tailed by the Colchester Cross Country which is at Abbey Field on the 9th February and Hadleigh on the 23rd February, again it would be good to see a high volume of blue vests out for these 2. As we move into March you will see communications from Nick Goodman as we come to the annual subs paying season, this year he is looking at getting a bit more automated so that we don’t have that odd period when we are members but are awaiting our EA confirmation so please look out for Nick’s notes.
The last Chairman’s challenge has been confirmed and this is the Dovedale dipper which takes place in August, Dovedale and the surrounding area is a fantastic part of our country so this race will give some great views for those up for the challenge. I know there are plenty of you out there training for spring marathon’s and some longer distances like the 3 Shires so please make sure that you go out well prepared for the distance, the weather and if your running in the evening in some high viz or reflective clothing – oh and take some water with you if you really start to up the miles its important to keep hydrated. Rodger’s trail events are a good way of getting out and about around the county (these surprise me every year where the routes are around footpaths that I should know are there but don’t) with the first of these due up in March – just as an extra incentive there is an “I trailed them all” tee shirt up for grabs for anyone who does every run in the series. These are great fun so I would highly recommend getting the dates in your diary and taking part – if you are new to trail running you’ll find plenty of people happy for some company and you can help each other get round.
After the voting late last year regarding the club standards there has been a lot of work going on to generate the “new” standards based on the age grading system that was outlined in the survey which was a unanimous popular choice from you all. These are being reviewed and checked at the moment with the intention of bringing in the new standards from the start of the new club year in April, these will be starred standards and you will be able to collect 1 to 5 stars and all will be communicated out to you nearer the time so keep an eye out for this.
Runner of the Month
So this month has been another cracking month of running from you all, John Booty did the Benfleet 15 in just over 2 hours whilst the Paul’s Davison and Connell and Charlie Keitch continue to put in some excellent performances across a variety of distances. We have had a Parkrun 1st place from David Wright, 150th Parkruns notched up by Charlie and 200 from VC Paul (although not all of them in January to be fair!), Jon Mann continues to run very well with a couple of storming Parkruns and an excellent XC run as well. However, this month Paul and I agreed that the runner of the month should go to the comeback kid Martin Owen. Martin sent me a note towards the back end of last year saying that he was thinking of coming back to the club after a while away, we wanted to get his running mojo back and decided that running 12 half marathons in a year would be a good thing to do! So true to his word he’s got his trainers back on and went over to Farnborough for the first of these and smashed his target time of 2 hours with an excellent 1 hour 51 run. He’s also whipping time off his 5k with a few great Parkrun’s and its good to see him back around the club, enthusiastic and happy as ever. Welcome back Martin and congratulations on being runner of the month for January.