Men’s Newsletter – August

2021 is rushing past – I’m sat typing this in my garden which is a nice thing to do especially in September. Once again I’m a bit late in writing this so apologies again! It has been a busy month for everyone as races come back into the calendar and our own Mickey Edwards series running through August. I must say it was great to be back and seeing lots of you out and racing around the lanes in Great Bentley, although doing this weekly is not something that I think we can do again – it was hard enough getting the races organised and set up with such a small gap and I guess that racing them so close together was a bit of a challenge too! That said there were some superb performances and some excellent times recorded, well done to Martin Cotton who came in 2nd overall in the series improving his time from 29:14 at the start to an impressive fastest time of 25:33 recorded. All the results for Mickey Edwards are on the website which is here https://gbrc.org.uk/our-races/micky-edwards-series/

The final round of the Trail Series is now live too – this one at Copford and is about 6 miles. I’ve really enjoyed the trail series again this year with some really nice courses set out by Rodger. I’m looking forward to this final one and bagging my I did them all 2021 t-shirt to go with the one I collected for last year.

Having race reports written on a regular basis is another welcome return that we have seen recently and its great to see some new names writing these reports, thanks to you all – if you haven’t seen them then please get yourself over to the website and have a look at the reports, it just shows the diversity of the events and distances that you all do and also some excellent performances are being recorded – here’s the link https://gbrc.org.uk/category/race-reports/

So looking forward to Cross Country season this will kick off with the Essex Cross Country relay which is taking place on the 2nd October in Brentwood. Ryan Day is collecting names to put into teams to take part in this so if you fancy kicking the cross country season off with a 5k leg then email Ryan and get your name on the list. The NESS Cross Country league is back, back, back again this year and the provisional race dates have been penciled in starting with Springfield on the 7th November, Halstead on the 28th November, our own race on the 12th December, Harwich on the 30th January and Hadleigh on the 20th February, the Colchester one is still to have an agreed date. Now our race will hopefully be at Hilly Fields again, we are in contact with the ranger and the school as we try and tie things down to use that venue again. I know the other clubs are also looking at confirming their race venues which is now slightly more tricky following COVID as all these places are looking at how events can be run on them and safely. Anyway, we are on the ball and hopefully we’ll be able to confirm everything about our race shortly.

Plans are also progressing for this years Geoff Day race – this is normally held on a Wednesday evening following on from the Mickey Edwards series but for anyone involved in the last race in ME’s it was pretty gloomy by the end so we are looking at doing this on a Sunday morning and are targeting the 26th September to do this. Again this is subject to us being able to book the village hall – if not we have some alternative plans in the back pocket that we could implement if needed. Anyway, please pencil that date into your diary, we normally have a good turnout for this race if you want to know more about Geoff and the race please have a look here https://gbrc.org.uk/our-races/geoff-day-memorial-5k/

Talking of plans – February 6th 2022 sees the return of our half marathon and we are once again dusting off our plans and list of jobs to do with that so that we can get this race back up and running. Although February seems a way off it takes a while to get everything in place so we are on the ball and starting to get things done. For those of you at who’ve been at the village hall you may have seen that our old sheds have been replaced by a new impressive structure which has been the summers’ work for Rodger, Paul C. and Tom K. – we have quite a bit of equipment to store and things like the finish arch take up a load of space so we have replaced the old small sheds with this new big one that has plenty of room to store our stuff safely and make it easy to get to. Thanks to the 3 chaps for all your work.

So runner of the month, as I’ve said races are back on and many of you are taking part and showing what your training efforts have produced and Paul and I have had some thinking to do this month. We started by getting to a short list which was no easy task, our final shortlist was Martin Cotton who had an excellent Mickey Edwards series as outlined above, John Bush who did 15 laps at the Hare and Tortoise event a total of 37.5 miles, Gary Cooper who was another who had a great Mickey Edwards series including a PB of 31:04 after starting with a baseline of 33:15 and also running the furthest he has in the 10k race at Clacton and then finally Mark Jasper who had 2 wins at Clacton Parkrun and also improved an impressive baseline of 18:18 at ME’s to a final 17:56.

In the end we couldn’t make a decision between the 2 very impressive monthly performances of Gary Cooper and Mark Jasper, we felt that they we really very worthy winners for very different reasons.