Race report – week ending 22 August

It’s time for my first race report! I echo what those who have gone before me have said – if Bentley isn’t listed as your club, and you didn’t post it on the August Facebook thread, I might not know about your achievement, but hopefully I got the majority (if not, please do complain directly to Caroline, and maybe she’ll sack me :D).

At Parkrun, Bentley had its usual strong showing at all of the local events, as well as a few members enjoying some Parkrun tourism in far-flung corners of the British Isles. Five members took on Colchester Castle, within Robin Oakley finishing in 16th position with a time of 20:45, followed by Russell Clarke (23:29), Richard Moor (23:38), Robert Ferguson (25:19) and Teresa Farmer (35:17).

At Clacton, Bentley runners bagged 3 of the top 4 finishing places, with Mark Jasper coming in as first finisher with a time of 18:48, closely followed by Harry Swinbourne scoring a new PB of 18:56, and Ray Baggs in 4th with a time of 20:55. Dave Jones was also feeling speedy with a new PB of 25:49, Catherine Ott finished in 28:38, Peter Reeve in 38:53 and David Nugent in 53:28.

There was a big Bentley turnout at Highwoods this week, with Paul Connell finishing in 5th position with a nice round time of 20:00 and David Wright in 8th with a time of 20:58. Malcolm Jarvis completed the event in 24:27, Mags was the first female finisher in 24:32, and Scott Young and Paul Hollidge both finished in 28:48 (I assume they ran it together, otherwise it’s a rather big coincidence).

At other local parkruns, Martin Owen was a lone Bentley runner at Harwich (25:36) and Rob Dyer and Caroline Talbot completed Felixstowe parkrun in 27:07 and 27:08 respectively. On Sunday, Darcey Jones completed Clacton junior parkrun in 17:01, just ahead of Clara Jones in 17:09.

Further afield, Rob Blackman was the second finisher at Chilton Fields, with a new PB of 20:02. Charlie Keitch had better luck making his way to a Scottish parkrun this week, after his family previously branded him “unreasonable” for considering a 3-hour round trip, including ferry crossings, to attend a parkrun the previous week. His commitment to parkrun tourism paid dividends when he became the second place finisher at Mount Stuart parkrun in a time of 19:03, narrowly missing the top spot by 2 seconds. Continuing the theme of parkruns around historic sites, the Preslands embraced the hill at Lanhydrock parkrun in Cornwall (revenge for all those hills she makes us run up on Friday mornings?). Vicky completed her 50th parkrun (16 months after her 49th parkrun!) in 25:30 and Phil finished in 27:04.

Onto this weekend’s races … still riding on the endorphins of last week’s “Marathon Monday”, Leoni Harvey ventured to the Big Smoke and to take part in the Vitality Big Half. She achieved a chip time of 2:03:12, shaving 15 seconds off her PB – particularly impressive pacing skills given that GPS issues meant her watch wasn’t giving her accurate pace information. Here’s Leoni looking deservedly proud of herself with her medal … but also looking fresh as a daisy! I don’t know how she does it!

The Clacton 10k and half marathon events took place on Sunday and, as expected, there were a number of blue vests in both events. In the half marathon, Harry Swinbourne achieved an impressive top 20 finish with a chip time of 1:28:09. Bev Shortley finished 5th in her age category in 2:00:52, and Andy Rutson-Edwards ran 02:12:59.

In the 10k event, after a string of superb recent 5k times, Ryan finished in 3rd place overall with a time of 35:17. Other male Bentley finishers were Dave Jones (5th in his age category in 52:50), Frank Gardiner (2nd in his age category in 55:54) Brian Telford (10th in his age category in 55:53) and Gary C, who I know has been training really hard to get his distance up for this event, in 1:16:15. Among the ladies, Inga Hayden-Cooper was the 10th female finisher in 50:19, and Claire Poole was 3rd in her category in 57:27. Louise Balfour smashed her 10k PB with a time of 01:01:06, with Michelle Auer close behind in 01:01:14. Congratulations everyone, all those sweaty summer training sessions are clearly translating into great race times!

It’s a thumbs-up from Louise!

Whilst not technically a ‘race’, I couldn’t end the report without mentioning Kathy’s fantastic trail run, which took place on Sunday. Hosted by Paul and Sarah Davison, the event was a 9.5 (ish) mile self-navigating trail run taking in the many wonderful trails between Eight Ash Green and Chappel, and culminating in a characteristically plentiful Bentley buffet. Around £350 was raised for the Children’s Liver Disease Foundation, and it was lovely to meet the real star of the show, the beautiful Delilah (who seemed a little hopeful that it might actually be her birthday, thanks to the amount of people and cakes)! For someone reasonably new to the club, it was a lovely demonstration of what a great community this club is, and how everyone supports each other (whilst having fun and eating too much – definitely my kind of club)!

The hostesses with the … mostesses?

Well done again on everyone’s achievements this week. Wishing you all another happy week of running, and I look forward to seeing the final Mickey Edwards results after Wednesday’s race!