Steve Way and Jon Sharkey – BAC’s International Athletes

 

Steve Way and Jon Sharkey - BAC's International Athletes
Steve Way and Jon Sharkey – BAC’s International Athletes

It’s well worth having a look at Steve Way‘s website www.steveway.co.uk to see his account of a remarkable run in the 100k World Championships at Doha, Qatar on 21 November 2014. Steve‘s preparations for the race hadn’t been quite as he’d wished, with injury and Man Flu in the preceding weeks, but, on the start line all seemed to be well. Things continued well for the first part of the race with Steve maintaining exactly the planned pace, ignoring those athletes who chose to set off at something like a sprint. However, approaching 24k, stomach problems led to a portaloo visit, meaning slowing down and losing time. Hopefully, this wouldn’t be repeated, but it wasn’t to be, with the next 50k or so, no less, turning into a portaloo to portaloo race, some of them reached just in time. Things improved at about 75k, but Steve describes that middle 50k as his “darkest running hours”, at times with thoughts such as “I can’t do this”. With all this, it really is a tribute to Steve that he kept going, when many would have withdrawn, and he was rewarded, not only with a 13th position in 6.57.23, but a team bronze medal, Steve finishing second of the GB team.  This was a multi-lap race, which meant that Steve‘s wife, Sarah, whose tremendous support Steve acknowledges in his blog, was able to encourage him continuously throughout the race (despite the fact this was at night!), which must have been the support he needed to keep going.  The winning time was 6.27.43, and it’s worth remembering that Steve has run a 6.19.20 100k, and, so far as we know, remains the fastest man on the planet at this moment over the distance.  Although this wasn’t quite the result Steve had hoped for, it’s great to read that he is in no way discouraged, planning to run next year’s London Marathon (with all the training benefits that will bring to local athletes in their winter training) and, of course, the Comrades’ Marathon in South Africa later in the year.  The 100k World Championships may not have been everything Steve had hoped for, but the rest of us can only admire the strength of character which most of us can only imagine.  Amazing!

Steve Way is welcomed by his wife, Sarah, after the "hardest 7 hours" of his life
Steve Way is welcomed by his wife, Sarah, after the “hardest 7 hours” of his life

It’s also worth remembering that we have another current international athlete in our midst, namely Jon Sharkey, who was part of the winning England team (which also included Steve) in the Anglo-Celtic International Plate (also a 100k race) at Gravesend on 3 May.  Looking for a challenge after resting following his debut Ironman, and inspired by Steve, Jon decided to seek qualification for the Plate by running, without any proper preparation, in a 50k race in Newcastle.  He succeeded by running the most disciplined race imaginable, finishing, as planned, in 3.19, 3 minutes short of the qualifying time.  Having, as a result, been selected to represent England in the Plate, Jon ran an incredible inaugural 100k to finish a remarkable 6th, with the result that England were the winners.

Jon Sharkey competes for his country
Jon Sharkey competes for his country

How many clubs, apart from the top, almost ‘professional’, clubs can claim not one, but two, international athletes?  We should be, and are, very proud of Steve and Jon.

Wimborne 10, Boscombe 10k, Gosport HM, Parkruns, BAC DRRL awards and off-road duathlons

Jon Sharkey, Gemma Bragg, Caroline Rowley, Nikki Sandell and Simon Munro are justifiably happy after the Wimborne 10
Jon Sharkey, Gemma Bragg, Caroline Rowley, Nikki Sandell and Simon Munro are justifiably happy after the Wimborne 10

Some catching up to do……………………
The final Dorset Road Race League event of the year, the Wimborne 10 (mile), organised by Wimborne Athletic Club, took place on 16 November, and resulted in a number of BAC wins and PBs. Jon Sharkey and Simon Munro have been contesting individual places in the League, and this was finally settled with a second place in this race by Jon, followed by Simon in third. Paul Hill continues to demonstrate his unusual ability to continue training and racing with no post-marathon recovery by finishing eighth with a PB. Nikki Sandell led home BAC‘s ladies’ team, followed by Gemma Bragg, also running a PB, with Caroline Rowley completing the team. Yet another PB for this distance was run by Simon Hearn.
Wimborne 10 results (BAC):
2. Jon Sharkey 55.29; 3. Simon Munro 56.31; 8. Paul Hill 58.59; 43. Nikki Sandell 1.05.34; 67. Gemma Bragg 1.07.11; 74. Jud Kirk 1.07.32; 75. Simon Hearn 1.07.39; 99. Steve Cox 1.10.32; 149. Caroline Rowley 1.14.17; 178. Andy Gillespie 1.17.23; 371. Will Price 1.35.09. There were 465 finishers.

This might be the appropriate time to round up the BAC positions in the Dorset Road Race League for 2014.  This has been an incredibly successful year for the club, with team and individual awards due to be presented at The Junction Leisure Centre after the Broadstone Quarter on 1 January 2015 – make sure you’re there!!  We all expected the men to do well, and would have been disappointed otherwise, but what has been remarkable this year has been the renascence of our ladies’ team, who, from seemingly nowhere, in 2013 appeared in strength to top Division 2 and earn promotion to Division 1.  Then, not only do they consolidate their position in the top division, they go on to win it!  The foundation of the team, racing regularly, has been Nikki Sandell, Gemma Bragg and Caroline Rowley, backed up by (as they say on ‘Strictly’ – in no particular order) Emma Dews, Helen Ambrosen, Janie Chapman and Cherry Sheffrin, with recently joined Heidi Tregenza showing her ability in cross-country, but yet to race on the road in a BAC vest.  In addition, Caroline is the only BAC athlete to win the Fidelity Award for competing in all 12 League races, which is quite an achievement considering the commitment involved.  For the men, Jon Sharkey and Simon Munro having been competing for the first individual spot, just taken by Jon with Simon close behind in second. Another award worthy of note is Paul Hill‘s win in the 21/24 age category, considering nearly all Paul‘s League races have been just after Parkruns or just before or after a marathon, etc.!  So, in addition to Division 1 wins for both BAC Mens‘ and Ladies‘ teams, the individual DRRL awards are as follows:

1st overall – Jon Sharkey;  1st M25/29 – Simon Munro (2nd overall); 1st M21/24 – Paul Hill (8th overall);   1st F overall – Nikki Sandell;  1st F30/34 – Gemma Bragg (2nd F overall);  1st F40/44 – Caroline Rowley (6th F overall) + Fidelity Award.

The Boscombe 10k, organised by Bournemouth Joggers, took place on 23 November.  Amongst the 11 BAC athletes who competed were Paul Hill and Nikki Sandell, who both ran 2 seconds outside their PBs (Nikki was the 2nd lady), and Chris O’Brien, who also ran a PB.                                                                                                                           Boscombe 10k results (BAC):                                                                                       4. Paul Hill 36.11;  10. Simon Way 36.57;  12. Billy McGreevy 37.00;  32. Nikki Sandell 39.23;  39. George Way 39.55;  41. Chris O’Brien 39.57;  53. Ian White 40.37;  55. Jud Kirk 40.51;  84. Steve Cox 43.04;  211. Joe Price 48.48;  375. Will Price 55.13.  There were 531 finishers.

The Gosport Half Marathon, organised by Gosport Road Runners, took place on 16 November.  Of the 1574 finishers, in 32nd place was Manol Dimitrov, 1.15.24 (2 seconds over Manol‘s PB), and 49th was Graeme Miller, 1.18.03.

The recent Parkruns have produced some BAC winners and PBs.  On 15 November, at BournemouthPaul Hill won (for the second time!) with a PB, but then reverted to his customary (!) 2nd position on 29 November, having been 3rd on 22 November.  Also running PBs on 15 November were Brandon Meredith, Sebastian Hearn and Alison Humphrey (Alison‘s PB was, of course, for this event; in earlier years, as Alison Barnes, Alison ran quicker than most people over this and other distances!).  At Poole on 29 November, Jez Bragg ran his first Parkrun to finish 3rd, closely followed in 4th by Simon Way, and the week before, 22 November, the Poole Parkrun was won by Jon Sharkey.

Ross Smith approaches transit in the Ashvale Ranges off-road duathlon
Ross Smith approaches transit in the Ashvale Ranges off-road duathlon

Maybe not actually road running, but it’s worth mentioning Ross Smith‘s exploits in off-road duathlons.  On 16 November Ross was 8th of 152 finishers in an extremely muddy Cirencester Duathlon, which consisted of a 2 mile run, 10 mile bike and 2 mile run.  Even more impressive was Ross‘ 4th position of 233 at Ashvale Ranges the following Saturday, 22 November, consisting of a 10k run, 18k bike and 5k run which Ross completed in 2.05.38.  Ross describes the event as extremely hilly and tough but he says it was a great race and he felt good (BAC training?!), and Ross‘ excellent position is more remarkable considering he had a tumble at 3 miles into the first run, tearing a small muscle, which resulted in slight swelling to his leg by the finish.  So most of the race must have been undertaken with some pain – well done!

Hampshire XC League, Wessex XC League and ‘Grim Duathlon’

 

BAC Ladies' team -Nikki Sandell, Cherry Sheffrin, Louise Price, Heidi Tregenza
BAC Ladies’ team -Nikki Sandell, Cherry Sheffrin, Louise Price, Heidi Tregenza

The second fixture of the Hampshire Cross Country League took place in conditions which became steadily worse at Goodwood on Saturday 9 November. Apart from the fact that BAC‘s senior men and ladies were present in greater strength than at the first fixture at Farley Mount (both teams creeping up the League tables), the main stories of the day were Bridget Dence‘s run in the U17W race, Brandon Meredith competing in the senior mens’ race, having just missed the start of his own (U17M) race as a result of traffic difficulties on the way and the welcome presence of a BAC U13 Boys’ team.

Bridget Dence - 2nd in her age category
Bridget Dence – 2nd in her age category

For the senior men, Steve Way, 11th overall and 1st Vet, David Long, Rob McTaggart and Simon Munro all had excellent runs, and would have been joined by Jacek Cieluszecki, who was running well until the latter part of the race when he slightly twisted his ankle. Jacek continued for a while, but as he was rapidly losing places decided, sensibly, to retire, but hopefully there has been no lasting damage. Fortunately, Toby Chapman had undertaken a three hour return trip to compete, and, as BAC‘s fifth scorer, saved the team from slipping one further place, both on the day and in the aggregate table. In total there were 11 BAC senior/vet men taking part, so well done to everyone for turning out on what was potentially going to be a dreadful day, and turned out to be so late in the afternoon with strong winds and heavy rain. Well done particularly to Brandon Meredith, who arrived just too late to participate in his own U17M race and, rather than giving up, decided to run in the senior/vet race, which is a considerably longer distance, and this was the farthest Brandon had actually raced.
BAC‘s senior men finished 4th on the day, and have moved up to 5th in the aggregate table (in both cases of 10 complete teams), and both positions would have been lower had Toby not travelled so far to compete. The individual aggregate placings are not too meaningful as yet, but nevertheless Steve is 1= Vet, and David is 10= U20M. BAC also fielded a Vets’ team at Goodwood, which finished 6th of 11 teams, of course considerably helped by Steve‘s run!
BAC‘s ladies had an excellent day, with Nikki Sandell, Heidi Tregenza, Cherry Sheffrin, with Louise Price in reserve, finishing 7th on the day of 21 complete teams, and in the aggregate table lie 6th of 16 complete teams in the first two fixtures.  This was Heidi‘s first race in BAC colours, and she demonstrated what a useful asset to the club she will be.   In the aggregate table, Nikki is 8= Vet Lady.
Bridget Dence continues to astonish, performing so well in her new age category, finishing strongly in 2nd position in her race, and Bridget lies 2nd in the aggregate table for U17W.  There was a third BAC competing at Goodwood.  Jim Dence, Tom Farwell and Conor Charlwood (competing in the Hampshire Cross Country League for the first time) formed an U13 Boys’ team, who were 8th of 10 complete teams on the day.

U13 Boys team - Jim Dence, Tom Farwell and Conor Charlwood
U13 Boys team – Jim Dence, Tom Farwell and Conor Charlwood

Results (BAC): (full details on Hampshire Athletics website)                   Senior/Vet Men; 11.Steve Way 28.28;  18, David Long 29.41;  20. Rob McTaggart 29.52;  27. Simon Munro 30.12;  35. Toby Chapman 30.34;  62. Paul Hill 32.11;  90. Ross Smith 33.42;  134. Brandon Meredith 36.03;  142. Nick Kenchington 36.39;  176. Mike Cowham 38.38;  221 Ian Graham 42.55. There were 241 finishers. Senior/Vet Women;  24. Nikki Sandell 23.13;  36. Heidi Tregenza 23.54;  62. Cherry Sheffrin 25.43;  110. Louise Price 29.05.  There were 152 finishers.  U17 Men;  36. Sebastian Hearn 18.44.  There were 46 finishers.  U17 Women;  2. Bridget Dence 16.24.  There were 33 finishers.  U13 Boys;  26. Jim Dence 12.10;  28. Tom Farwell;  49. Conor Charlwood 13.05.  There were 72 finishers.  See below for more photos……………..

The previous Sunday, 2 November, the second fixture of the Wessex Cross Country League took place at Canford Heath.  Bridget Dence ran well, to finish 3rd in the U17W race in 18.15, with other BAC results as follows: U17M; 9. Brandon Meredith 18.32;  11. Sebastian Hearn 20.11;  U15G;  10. Elsa Charlwood 13.47;  U11B;  9. Conor Charlwood 7.48.  Full details are available on the Team Dorset website.

Ross Smith competes in the Grim Duathlon
Ross Smith competes in the Grim Duathlon

Finally, in addition to rapidly improving running, Ross Smith is apparently something of a talented mountain biker.  On 1 November, Ross took part in the ‘Grim Duathlon’ at Swinley Forest, Blackwater, a run/cycle/run duathlon entirely off-road, on an army testing area.  Of 168 finishers, Ross was an astonishing 2nd, with a 1st run in 21.27, Bike 1.04.03 and a 2nd run 22.44.  Well done!

More photos of the Hampshire Cross Country League “in no particular order”, as they say on ‘Strictly’…………………

Heidi Tregenza
Heidi Tregenza
Nikki Sandell
Nikki Sandell
Paul Hill
Paul Hill
Toby Chapman and Simon Munro
Toby Chapman and Simon Munro
Steve Way
Steve Way
Ross Smith
Ross Smith
Jacek Cieluszecki
Jacek Cieluszecki
Brandon Meredith
Brandon Meredith
Rob McTaggart
Rob McTaggart
Mike Cowham
Mike Cowham
David Long
David Long

 

Club Road Championship – winner announced!

Steve Way, winner of 10k, 10 Mile and Half Marathon Club Championships
Steve Way, winner of 10k, 10 Mile and Half Marathon Club Championships

The Club Championship was inaugurated some years ago by Jon Sharkey, and the competition relates to age-graded performances in races of 10k, 10 miles and half marathon, with the intention that everyone has a chance of winning.
The competition runs from 1 November to 31 October each year, so that the awards can be presented at the Club’s Awards evening in November.
There has been a problem with keeping the 10 mile and half marathon tables up to date, but, with the help of Manol Dimitrov, this has now been resolved, and all the tables are now up to date to 31 October. The tables will be retained on the website for a short period, after which they will be replaced by the new tables, of which the half marathon will commence with Chris O’Brien‘s run at Lancaster, the 10 mile with the Wimborne 10 and the 10k with the Boscombe 10k (unless anyone knows of any other races?).
It will probably be no surprise that the winner of all three Road Championships is Steve Way, resulting from Steve‘s runs in the Poole 10k (31.11; 89.38%), New Forest 10 mile (50.43; 91.71%) and the Hackney Half Marathon (67.14; 90.94%). Many congratulations! In second place in all of the distances was Jacek Cieluszecki. Steve‘s awards will be presented at the Presentation Evening at AFC Bournemouth on Saturday 15 November, when Steve will be the guest speaker – why not purchase a ticket and come along (details on separate posting)?

Gilly Hilly, Lancaster HM and Parkruns

BAC's winning mens' team at Gilly Hilly - Simon Munro, Graeme Miller, Jon Sharkey, Simon Way and Paul Hill
BAC’s winning mens’ team at Gilly Hilly – Simon Munro, Graeme Miller, Jon Sharkey, Simon Way and Paul Hill

Success at the penultimate Dorset Road Race League event, a solid performance in the North of England, and two unexpected BAC Parkrunners feature this week.

BAC's winning DRRL ladies' team at Gilly Hilly - Nikki Sandell, Gemma Bragg and Caroline Rowley
BAC’s winning DRRL ladies’ team at Gilly Hilly – Nikki Sandell, Gemma Bragg and Caroline Rowley

The Gillingham Trotters ‘Gilly Hilly’ 7.5 mile road race, which stepped in as a DRRL race following the cancellation due to weather conditions of the March Hare 20 earlier in the year, took place in Gillingham on Sunday 2 November, and it was good to see strong BAC Mens’ and Ladies’ teams in action, despite the fact that both have already won year’s League. For the men, Jon Sharkey, Simon Munro and Graeme Miller secured the Open team prize, with finishing positions of second, third and fourth respectively. Paul Hill, in seventh place and Simon Way, tenth, sealed the League win for BACNikki Sandell was BAC‘s first lady across the line, with Gemma Bragg and Caroline Rowley completing both the Open and League team.  The Open team competition places were calculated by an aggregate time, which resulted in BAC‘s ladies just being pipped in to second place by Poole A C with a margin of 1 minute, 40 seconds, very close considering the winning aggregate time was 2 hours, 40 minutes, 7 seconds!  However, the League positions are calculated by finishing positions, and by this measure BAC came just in front of Poole A C’s ladies, so, once again, BAC‘s ladies team, promoted only this year from Division 2 of the League, have won an individual League race, cementing their position at the top of Division 1.  The final League race is the Wimborne 10 on 16 November (entries now closed), and the entry list shows a strong BAC contingent (which may have something to do with the battle for individual League positions!), so it could be a dramatic finish to a successful League year.

BAC mens' team with their Gilly Hilly winnings
BAC mens’ team with their Gilly Hilly winnings

Gilly Hilly results (BAC):  2. Jon Sharkey 42.52;  3. Simon Munro 44.06;  4. Graeme Miller (1st Vet) 44.21;  7. Paul Hill 44.55;  10. Simon Way 46.57;  42. Nikki Sandell (3rd lady, 2nd FV) 51.43;  45. Gemma Bragg 52.03;  69. Steve Cox 55.08;  84. Caroline Rowley 58.02;  104. Ian Graham 59.54.  There were 206 finishers.

See below for more photos…………..

Meanwhile, in Lancaster, Chris O’Brien ran the Lancaster Half Marathon in 89.27, finishing 39th of a total of 604.  This appears to be a HM PB for Chris, who hopefully is satisfied, particularly with just managing to break the 90 minute barrier.

The day before saw two BAC athletes unexpectedly competing in the Parkruns.  In Kings Park, Bournemouth on Saturday 1 November, Alison Humphrey (known to many as Ali Barnes) appeared on the start line.  It was good to see Alison again after so long, and clearly Alison is keeping herself in shape, alongside looking after her family, as her time was 21.19.  Paul Hill was yet again second in the race – this seems to be Paul‘s fate!  Other BAC competitors (amongst a total of 273, so the Bournemouth Parkrun continues to grow) were Ian White, Jud Kirk, Jim Dence (running a PB and first in his age category JM11-14), Joe Price, Ian Graham (first in his age category VM65-69, but definitely not a PB!) and Will Price.  The other BAC athlete unexpectedly turning up was Tony Chutter, who was tenth (of 157) at the Weymouth Parkrun in 20.18, so Tony clearly isn’t in bad shape after injury and a lengthy trip abroad.  Let’s hope we see Tony competing in a BAC vest soon!  Meanwhile, in Poole Park, Simon Munro was preparing for his splendid Gilly Hilly the next day by finishing 4th of a total of 576 in the Poole Parkrun.

BAC athletes receive their Gilly Hilly prizes from the Mayor…………

Jon Sharkey (also in photo in Ines Braun, Gillingham Trotters, who contributes so much to local athletics)
Jon Sharkey (also in photo in Ines Braun, Gillingham Trotters, who contributes so much to local athletics)
Simon Munro
Simon Munro
Graeme Miller
Graeme Miller

 

Nikki Sandell
Nikki Sandell