Congratulations to Jez Bragg on his 2nd place in The Fellsman, which took place in the Yorkshire Dales on Saturday 25 April. This is a fell race at its toughest, consisting of a high level traverse covering more than 60 miles involving climbs totalling 11,000 feet. Much of the course isn’t along well defined footpaths, so it’s a test of the competitor’s navigational skills with map and compass as well as physical fitness. To make matters worse, on the day there was a full-on blizzard, with wind, rain and sleet. Jez‘s time of 10.44 was minutes behind the winner (10.23), and he led a very strong team (named ‘Haggis, Neaps and Tatties’!), as his remaining team members finished 3rd and 4th. To illustrate just how tough was this event, 374 started. but the drop-out along the way was such that 279 finished. Well done to Jez on such a fantastic achievement!
Nearer to home, more usual races were taking place (apart, of course, from the London Marathon, already reported on), including the Southbourne Flat & Fast 5k and 10k on Sunday 26 April. It appears there were no BAC athletes competing in the 10k, but thanks to Tony Hunt, running in the 5k, the BAC flag flew at the event. Tony was 3rd of 71 finishers in 19.34. On the same day the Fordingbridge Fire Station 10k took place, in which, of a total of 117, Simon Hunt was 8th in 41.15, Joe Price was 23rd in 43.49 and Will Price 103rd in 61.01. Apologies if anyone has been missed, but the results don’t mention clubs, nor full names.
With so much going on during the weekend, it’s hardly surprising that there was limited BAC representation in the Parkruns on Saturday 25 April. In the Bournemouth Parkrun, this consisted of Ian White, Steve Cox and Ian Graham (1st V65), and in the PooleParkrun Simon Munro had an excellent run to finish 7th. 314 finished at Bournemouth, and 549 at Poole.
The story of BAC in the London Marathon this year is one, generally, of PBs, and targets achieved, as 14 of our athletes competed in almost perfect conditions, without the forecast rain, or the hot sun which all of us have enjoyed for the last few days, which would not have been welcome on Sunday. The BAC squad was led to the finish by Anthony Clark who ran a superb, intelligent race to a PB by some 4 minutes of 2.30.06. Something like 38,000 finished this year’s marathon, which emphasises the quality of Anthony’s run, considering that he was 53rd of his 18-39 category. His pacing was spot on passing half way, as he did, at 1.14.53. Anthony finished hand-in-hand with Spiderman, aka PaulMartelletti, winner of the recent Manchester Marathon, and currently ranked number 2 of GB‘s marathon runners. Then came Steve Way, who had kept very quiet that he was running at all! Steve was testing out his recovery from injury, and swopped his elite start for the championship start, planning to run 6 minute miles, which he did, with a time of 2.35.38, 18th in the 40-44 category. Steve‘s target is now the Edinburgh Marathon, later this year, and, at long last, things are looking up for him. Then came Graeme Miller, demolishing his PB by over 4 minutes, to finish in 2.38.52, 45th 40-44. This was nothing less than Graeme deserved, after very focussed training, including leading the Tuesday night marathon sessions. Toby Chapman was next, in 2.42.22. Toby confessed, the previous day, that his training hadn’t really been up to the mark, with something like five weeks with hardly any running at all – so a time anyone would be proud of, and way beyond the capacity of many of us, is surely something of an achievement! 5th BAC was Simon Way, who more than reached his target of a PB – by almost 4 minutes! Simon, who was 35th 45-49, ran a strong and superbly paced race, finishing in 2.43.23, having passed half-way at 1.21.26. The next over the line was Manol Dimitrov, in 2.45.39. Manol‘s PB is considerably faster than this, and it may be the London Marathon wasn’t a specific target race for him. But BillyMcGreevy clearly was targetting this race, as his time of 2.52.50 was yet another of the BAC PBs of the day, again a well-paced run, with a half-way point time of 1.25.29. Paul Chapman, after some excellent training throughout the winter, was unlucky enough to sustain an injury only two days before the marathon, sufficiently severe to cause doubt about starting even the day before. Paul decided, however, that he would start, and see how things went, pulling out if continuing would aggravate the injury. So, it says a great deal for Paul‘s stamina that, no only did he finish, but he did so in 2.53.52, knocking 4 minutes off his PB in the process! Yet another PB was achieved by Sanjai Sharma, finishing in 2.55.22. There must be something about BAC training, as Sanjai, like so many others, ran a perfectly paced marathon, going through half-way, as he did, in 1.28.13 – quality marathon running! And yet another PB to report is that of Nikki Sandell, and what a PB – Nikki‘s time of 3.01.42 knocked over 12 minutes off her previous marathon best, and this despite a knee injury which has been causing trouble and threatened throughout! Such strength of character is an example to us all. Richard Nelson seems to run just about every marathon going, and there he was pounding the streets of London. Richard finished in 3.08.12, just some 3 minutes or so off his PB, so Richard‘s satisfaction with his run is surely justified. Caroline Rowley was BAC‘s second lady to cross the line in this, the middle of three marathons Caroline is running in the space of two weeks. Less than a week earlier, Caroline ran 3.33.27 in the Boston Marathon, so her time of 3.32.33 must have been very pleasing for her, and shows how sensibly she is approaching this amazing challenge (for charity). Caroline has one marathon to go, the North Dorset VillageMarathon this Sunday, so we wish her every success in that. Something must have gone wrong with Andy Gillespie‘s run. Andy is very familiar with distance running – in fact a relatively flat road race at marathon distance might appear easy (though we know it isn’t!) against the type of challenge Andy regularly takes on, such as three coastal marathons (up-and-down!) in three days, so Andy‘s time of 3.49.13 indicates there may have been a problem, particularly as his splits show he slowed fairly dramatically in the later stages of the race. Hopefully, if there is a problem, it’ll sort itself out before Andy‘s next challenge, which no doubt isn’t far away! Last, but certainly not least, was Peter Gaze, well over 70 years of age, and still running a number of marathons each year. Surely any of us would be happy to be running marathons in 5.49.13 (indeed be running them at all!) at Peter‘s age.
For those of us watching the London Marathon, it was great to see so many BAC vests passing by, and giving whatever encouragement we could, so congratulations and well done to all our athletes taking part in this unique event.
Reports on The Fellsman (Yorkshire Dales), Southbourne Flat &Fast, Fordingbridge Fire Station 10k and Parkruns to follow………..
The first match of the season for the composite team of BAC, NewForest Junior AC and Poole Runners took place on Saturday 18th April. The team wasn’t as large as hoped for but what we lacked in numbers, we made up for in team spirit. Several competed in the maximum number of events allowed. The composite team finished 3rd out of 8 teams. IF enough BAC members are prepared to compete in the remaining 3 matches, we could finish first or second in each match. This would give us the chance of gaining promotion from the lowest league, as the top two teams will be promote.
Please compare our position to Team Dorset, who last year were in the bottom league. They were promoted whilst we were relegated. They are thus in the league above us and have won their first match. If they continue in this way they could be 2 leagues above us next year…
Starting with newcomers to BAC, Keelan Abley came 4th in 100m U17A and 5th in 200m U17A with a PB. Cameron Hale came 4th in 200m U17B, 4th in HJ and 5th in LJ, all being PBs. They show great promise for the future.
Jack Howlett, having switched to BAC this year, is already showing to be a great asset to the club. He started in fine form with two PBs and two first places in the U17 shot (13.79m) and discus (43.33). He also came 2nd in hammer.
Glenn Balfour was as accommodating as ever, in U17B he came 4th in 100B, in U20B 200m, he finished 3rd and in U20A LJ came 3rd. He later ran in a relay. If it were not for the rules, Glenn would do just about every event if asked, except pole vault and steeple chase.
Danielle Broom must surely bethe BAC athlete of the moment. Having performed so well last week at the Open Meeting, the U17 athlete gained the top spot in all 3 events. She won shot with a PB of 12.26m, discus with a PB of 41.80m and hammer with 50.63m. Danielle is now ranked in UK U17W as 2nd in hammer and discus and 12th in shot.
Olivia Galloway excelled in U17W 80mH and HJ U20 B coming 2nd in both. Verity Cowell was 2nd in LJ U17 and 1st in HJ U17.
Ben Arnold (U20) was 4th in 100m and 3rd in 200m
Rachel Welch (U20) was 3rd in 100m & 1st in LJ. Rosie Wootten (U20) won HJ and was 3rd in shot.
Matthew Ridge (U20) was 1st in javelin and 1st in discus, in which he gained a PB with 42.80m, and 3rd in hammer (all A events). BenDickinson won U17 javelin and U20B discus.
It would be wrong to focus solely on BAC performances when the team was a composite one. New Forest Junior AC fielded 6 athletes. They all performed well, competing in some of the longer and tougher track events. Harry Feltham was 2nd with a PB in 400m, 2nd in 800m & 4th in 1500m. Matthew Gerrish was 4th in 100m with a PB, 6th in 400m, and 2nd in 800m. Louise Ridgley was 3rd in 300m and 3rd in 800m, with PBs in both. Hannah Ingram was 1st in 300m with a PB and 1st in 800m. Jessica Warwick was 1stin 300m with a PB, 1st in 800m and 3rd in 1500m. Louise Cole was 2nd in 300mH.
With such limited resources we could only assemble 3 relays teams out of a possible maximum of 8, coming 1st in 4×300 U17W, 2nd in U20 W 4×100 and 4th in U17 M 4×100.
The next match is at Portsmouth on Saturday 16th May. Please let me (William Kearsey) know your availability, and what events you would like to do.
BAC has another World (and European) Champion! The club seems to be gaining something of a reputation in Ultra Distance running, as, this time, the event was the World and European 24 HourChampionships in Turin, Italy, on 11 April, in which Pat Robbins helped the GB team to an overall win, securing both World and European Gold Medals. Of a total of 179 male competitors, Pat was an astonishing 7th overall, running 128 laps ( we’re not quite sure of what!), with a running time of 23.54.22, so presumably Pat just didn’t have quite enough time to complete a 129th lap. The others making up the GB team were Robbie Button, 3rd overall, and SteveHolyoak, 11th overall. BAC‘s Ultra Distance pedigree must now be amongst the best in the country, with Steve Way as 50k WorldChampion, plus his achievements at 100k, and Jon Sharkey forming part of a winning England team at the Anglo-Celtic 100k Plate, in which Jon will again be competing for England again next month. The GB ladies’ team also had a highly successful campaign at the World Championships, with Debbie Martin-Consani (perhaps not a BAC member, but a name we recognise!) completing 111 laps and finishing 11th overall of a total of 282 ladies, and, with IsobelWykes (8th overall) and Sharon Law (11th overall), Debbie secured the European Bronze Medal. Debbie‘s time was 23.59.43, so it looks as if, after nearly 24 hours of running, Debbie may have had to sprint to complete a lap within 24 hours! Paul Consani was present in Turin to give invaluable encouragement to the teams, and hearty congratulations are due to Pat, and everyone else involved.
Some time later, on 19 April, Jacek Cieluszecki proved that he has shaken off his injury by winning the Bordeaux Marathon in 2.32.10. Jacek says that whereas the time may not be too impressive (really?) he decided that, in view of the fact that the course consisted of many twists and turns, and has cross-country sections, he would go for position rather than time. Jacek‘s pacing to achieve this was immaculate, moving to first place, as he did, at 42k, and finishing 33 seconds before the second-placed athlete. So well done to Jacek, and everyone is very pleased to see such a convincing return to form.
The next day, Caroline Rowley was starting the first of three marathons in almost the same number of weeks at the BostonMarathon on 20 April. Conditions were far from ideal, with a bitterly cold headwind, leaving everyone very cold and wet at the finish. The course is end-to-end, from the small town of Hopkinton to Boston, so the headwind would have been with the competitors all the way, and is also far from flat, with the notorious ‘HeartbreakHill‘ at about 20 miles, just when you don’t need it. So Caroline was justifiably pleased with her time of 3.33.27. The next challenges for Caroline are the London Marathon and the North Dorset VillageMarathon, as the main purpose in accepting these challenges is to raise money for charity, we congratulate Caroline and wish her every success in her next two marathons.
Of course, away from these events, life continues as normal, and another athlete returning from injury is Steve Way, who showed his progress by finishing 2nd in the Poole Parkrun on 18 April. If this had been a competitive event, BAC would have taken all the honours, as Anthony Clark was 4th, Billy McGreevy was 6th (in a sub 17 minute PB time), Robin Copestick 11th and Sanjai Sharma 16th! At the Bournemouth Parkrun the same day, Paul Hill reverted to his usual 2nd (to an ‘unknown’ winner – now who could that have been?), Paul Dixon-Box was 4th, Jud Kirk 18th, Steve Cox 25th and Ian White 31st. Also competing at Bournemouth was Eddie Suthers, category JM 11-14, and this was particularly pleasing, as Eddie is a recruit to the club from the Wednesday JuniorDevelopment Evenings. Will Price also kept up his record of running in just about all the Bournemouth Parkruns. The Parkrun movement goes from strength to strength, with 703 running at Poole, and 400 at Bournemouth.
Tim Dence travels the world with his work, and no doubt has much contact with the rich and famous, but who better to meet than the one and only Mo Farah! This happened recently at Seattle Airport as the photograph shows. Who knows what sprinkling of stardust might follow!
12 April 2015 saw large-scale events at both Bournemouth and Brighton. The Bournemouth Bay Run Half Marathon attracted a total of 1168 finishers, amongst whom were three of BAC‘s athletes, all with excellent runs. Anthony Clark was 4th in 1.18.02, ManolDimitrov 9th in 1.19.16 and Ben Walliman was 45th in 1.30.06. Unfortunately, a marshalling error meant that the first 200 or so runners in the 10k race ran an extra 3k, and therefore no results for this race have been published. Also, no results appear to have been published for the 1k and 5k races, so apologies to any BAC athletes who competed in these for the lack of any credit here.
Meanwhile, in Brighton, one of the races was also a 10k, which did go according to plan, and, of a total field of 1955, Chris O’Brien, our Web Administrator, ran a PB in 39.39, very encouraging considering Chris has only recently returned to running after a lengthy spell of injury.
Another BAC athlete returning from injury is Jacek Cieluszecki, so it was very pleasing to see that Jacek won the Poole Parkrun the day before, Saturday 11 April, with Billy McGreevy finishing 4th and Simon Way 5th of a total of 512. Of the 216 competitors in the Bournemouth Parkrun that day, the three BAC athletes were JudKirk, Steve Cox and Will Price.
Club President achieves ‘clean sweep’ at Guernsey Easter Races
Two of BAC’s senior runners, Club President Ian Graham and Dave Parsons made their annual journey to Guernsey this Easter to compete in the traditional Guernsey Easter Runs which consist of four races in four days totalling the Marathon distance of 26 miles. Both were hopeful of good performances as training had gone fairly well.
Good Friday 3rd April – 10k road race
The day dawned wet and windy and was far from promising. However, by the time the runners were beginning to assemble, the rain had cleared and it was just the prospect of running into a tough headwind on the second half of the course that was somewhat daunting.
There was time for the usual practice of finding out just who else was there and trying to establish what sort of form they might be in. The likely challengers to Ian and Dave for the V60 category appeared to be Martin Miller (Hercules Wimbledon/Chichester Runners) and local Guernsey ‘legend’ Brian Holden. However, there is nearly always someone who isn’t known or recognised who is about to spoil the party as they found out last year.
At the gun, Dave went out hard and it took Ian a little while to catch up but once he had done so, he gradually pulled away and by the time they reached the half way point just before turning back towards the finish, he was well clear. Although the wind on the way back wasn’t quite as bad as anticipated, everybody’s times were affected, even the leaders. Local star Lee Merrien was a comfortable winner of the race and the first lady, again by a clear margin, was international runner Helen Clitheroe in 31:37 and 35:19 respectively. Ian finished strongly in 44:28 (70th) and Dave over a minute behind in 45:48 (84th). When the results were first published, they were shown as 1st and 2nd V60, however, they were subsequently corrected when an error was found as a runner from St Edmund Pacers, Steve Rue appeared in 77th place with 44:47. Nevertheless a very satisfactory start with Martin and Brian well behind!
Sunday 4th April – Keith Falla Memorial Cross Country – ‘the full course’
This race is run in memory of Guernsey & BAC runner Keith Falla who was sadly killed when hit by a car when training in New Zealand. This year is the 40th anniversary of the accident and it was fitting that Keith’s widow, Caroline Marler (also ex BAC) was there not only as starter for the race but also to participate.
After his disappointing 10k the day before, Martin Miller made a more positive start. The first mile or so is on true cross country terrain of uneven ‘clumpy’ grass followed by some rolling hills with many rabbit holes to safely negotiate. On this part of the course, Ian was finding it hard to stay with Martin and Dave had already quickly fallen back from them both. When the course changed to gravel and grass paths, Ian was soon able to catch and pass Martin and he continued to pull away finishing almost a minute clear in 46th place in a time of 35:00. Martin and Dave were both overtaken by Steven Rue who was 2nd V60 to finish with Martin 3rd (35:58) and Dave 4th in 36:58 (53rd overall).
Monday 5th April – Stonecrusher 4 x 2 mile cross country relay
For those travelling without a full four person team, other runners are found/adopted to make up teams for this relay. Ian and Dave, running as relay team ‘Scott Free’ with reference to the absent Geoff Scott who was busy elsewhere starting his long distance Coast Path walk from Minehead to Shell Bay, teamed up with two Welsh ladies who were staying in the same hotel, Angela Jones and Dawn Lee. Angela is a top class Welsh triathlete and personal trainer and Dawn is a swimming instructor who in June of this year is due to attempt to swim the English Channel (we wish her every success).
Ian was quite rightly nominated as the first leg runner and with Martin and Steve both also running the first leg for their respective teams, we were in for a tight battle of the V60’s on that leg. There are several opportunities to see the runners on each leg and when they first came into sight, Martin was leading this V60 group with Ian right behind and Steve just a few yards further back. When they next came into view Martin was still just ahead of Ian and Steve had dropped back a bit. Ian later said that he was just beginning to think he would have to let Martin go when, on the second half of the course, Martin began to slow and Ian forged ahead and finished in 20th place in 14:54 (fastest V60 for the day) with Steven following in 15:04 and Martin 15:10.
Dave (who confesses to hating this race) took over on the second leg and managed to gain one place to hand over in 19th place with a time of 15:48 (40 seconds quicker than last year). Angela ran a terrific 3rd leg storming past a number of runners and was eventually credited with a time of 13:07 moving us up to 15th position. (She was eventually to complete the weekend as 3rd lady overall – a terrific performance for a 49 year old!!). Dawn was just looking to complete the course in under 30 minutes as she doesn’t profess to be a runner. The rest of the team positioned themselves strategically around the course to give her every encouragement. She came home smiling broadly in a time of 23:01 with the team finishing 24th – a very good team effort.
Easter Monday – 6th April Half Marathon
The weather for the final race was pleasant but with a brisk cool wind from the North East which would hopefully be a help on the way back to the finish at St Peter Port. Ian was well clear in the battle of the V60’s with Dave just in second, 8 places ahead of Martin. Steve was not competing in this final race so all that was needed to complete a BAC 1 – 2 was for Ian to finish without falling over and Dave to be no more than seven places behind Martin.
Then just before the start, we saw that Bill Adams from the Shetland Isles was there for this final event so Ian would have a fight on his hands to achieve the desired clean sweep.
Dave is usually very strong on this his favoured event, however, this time, Ian began to pull clear early on and Dave was finding it really tough to maintain any reasonable pace. Bill Adams also soon passed him and set off in pursuit of Ian. At the half way point, Ian began the long return journey and was startled to see that Bill was quite close to him and this forced him to push on as hard as possible. Not wanting to look back at any point, he just kept pushing all the way to the finish. Despite the hope that the wind would help on the way back, he was disappointed to find that for the most part, it still seemed to be a headwind! Ian was rewarded with the excellent time in the conditions of 1:37:47 in 48th place. It was almost 6 minutes before Bill came in 66th in 1:43:42.
Dave who, at one point, was overtaken by Martin, managed to keep going well over the last half of the race and finished just two places behind Bill in 1:44:22 for 3rd V60 on the day and to clinch 2nd V60 for the weekend.
And so to the Presentation which was held outside on the sun terrace at one of the Cliff-top Hotels in Guernsey and Ian was justly rewarded for his efforts with all four V60 prizes.
All in all, it was a very successful and enjoyable weekend. Here’s to 2016 when perhaps some other BAC runners might join us!!
There is always plenty going on over the Easter holiday, only one of which is the Rotary Quarter Marathon, held this year as usual on Easter Saturday, 4 April, with the result that there was a weakened BAC presence in this, the fourth fixture of the Dorset Road RaceLeague for 2015. Well done to the Ladies, though, who fielded a complete team, led by Nikki Sandell (42.33 and 3rd FV35), 46th overall, and to Paul Dixon-Box (38.40) and Robin Copestick (39.20), 8th and 13th respectively of a total of 376 finishers. The Ladies’ team was completed by Caroline Rowley, 135th in 48.21, and Louise Price, 170th in 50.37, with Steve Cox running well to finish 81st in 45.42. With only three BAC men competing, the Mens’ Team were the 7th League team, and the Ladies 4th. The next League fixture is the North Dorset Village Marathon on 3 May, in which, traditionally, BAC hasn’t always been as strong in depth as some of the other League clubs, but there is still plenty of time to recover after that!
Meanwhile, at the Bournemouth Parkrun, Jud Kirk, Ian White, JoePrice, Will Price and Sam Laws were amongst the 360 finishers, and there is no error, Paul Hill didn’t finish 2nd, in fact, Paul was timekeeping, finding it “harder than it looks”! At Poole, George Way continued his regular appearance, finishing 25th of an astonishing total of 747.