The Martello Marathon, Folkestone, Kent, must be unique in that it consists of two marathons on two consecutive days over exactly the same course. Other events comprise consecutive marathons, but along different courses, often each day’s course a continuation of the previous day. Jon Sharkey was amongst a small group who took on the challenge of competing in both the Martello Marathon‘s races, on Saturday 10 January and Sunday 11 January. Jon was the winner on both days, and was clearly holding himself back on the Saturday, finishing in 3.03.59, because, the next day, he crossed the line in 2.51.24, a clear winner, the second athlete (who hadn’t competed the day before) finishing in 3.08.23. 111 finished the race on the Saturday and 89 on the Saturday. To put Jon‘s achievement into perspective, amongst the leaders, only one other athlete, Martin Devine, competed on both days. Martin himself had creditable runs, finishing 3rd on Saturday in 3.25.26 and 4th on Sunday in 3.12.45, but everyone else who finished at the front of each marathon had only run once (and who can blame them for that!). Jon is planning on running once again in the Celtic Plate100k, in which last year he was selected to compete for England, so surely Jon‘s two wins over the 10/11 January weekend will help convince the selectors that Jon should be there for his country again!
2015 could hardly have got off to a better start with BAC Mens‘ and Ladies’ Team wins at the Broadstone QuarterMarathon on New Year’s Day, the first Dorset Road Race League fixture of the year. The race, organised by Poole Runners (with a record entry in its 30th year), was run in near-perfect conditions, finished with JonSharkey in 2nd position, followed by Simon Munro, 5th, and JezBragg, 6th, to complete the Open competition winning team, with Graeme Miller and Paul Hill (who arrived at the start with muddy legs having competed in the Bournemouth Parkrun earlier in the day!) completing the winning Mens’ DRRL team. BAC‘s Ladies‘ team, consisting of Nikki Sandell, Gemma Bragg and CarolineRowley, was victorious in both the Open and DRRL ladies’ races. Both Nikki and Gemma were amongst a group of the first six ladies, all of whom finished within 90 seconds. The awards took place in the Junction Leisure Centre, and it was a pleasure to see so many team and individual prizes going to BAC athletes, not only for the race itself, but also for the 2014 DRRL, the presentations of which followed the race awards (see report 29 November 2014 – Wimborne 10, etc. – for details). The DRRL was managed during 2014, and for some previous years, by Sam Munro, assisted by her husband Simon, and the excellent job done by Sam and Simon was illustrated by the very slick and professional awards presentation. Unfortunately, due to re-location of Simon‘s work, Sam is no longer able to continue with the DRRL, and we will certainly miss them both, though, happily, Wimborne AC‘s Gerry Shield has agreed to take over.
Broadstone Quarter Results (BAC): 2. Jon Sharkey 35.59; 5. Simon Munro 37.46; 6. Jez Bragg 37.54; 7. Graeme Miller 38.45 (1st V40); 18. Paul Hill 40.13; 43. Nikki Sandell 42.39; 46. Gemma Bragg 43.01; 56. Steve Cox 44.25; 98. Caroline Rowley 48.16; 122. Ian Graham 49.49; 169. Dave Parsons 53.29. There were 303 finishers.
As already noted, Paul Hill ran in the Bournemouth Parkrun earlier on New Year’s Day, finishing third, and, of the 179 finishers, was joined by Jud Kirk, Joe Price and Louise Price (no relation!). Paul was again third (what’s gone wrong?!) at Bournemouth on Saturday 3 January. Jud Kirk also ran on 3 January, but what is the explanation for his lowly finishing position (104th – Jud is normally well within the top 20)? Hopefully it is nothing to worry about. Again 179 finished the run. At the Poole Parkrun on 3 January, the only BAC representative of the 527 finishers was Tim Hughes, no doubt limbering up for the forthcoming track & field season!
Several BAC athletes competed in the Somerley 10k on Sunday 4 January. No results are as yet available, but a superb photo on the Bournemouth Echo website www.bournemouthecho.co.uk reveals that, at least, Heidi Tregenza, Caroline Rowley, Jud Kirk, Paul Hill, Simon and Sebastian Hearn and Joe Price took part, all proudly wearing BAC vests. Rumour has it that Heidi won the race, if confirmed, an excellent achievement, and if the results do become available this report will be updated. NB RESULTS NOWIN– showing thatHeidi was 1st lady, rather than 1st overall, but still a fantastic run, considering Heidi was 17th overall, out of an astonishing 592 finishers, and that Paul Hill had another great run. BAC results are as follows (with apologies if anyone has been missed – the results don’t specify clubs): 5. Paul Hill 36.40; 17. Heidi Tregenza 39.49; 30. Jud Kirk 41.00; 36. Simon Hearn 41.24; 73. Sebastian Hearn 44.35; 76. Caroline Rowley 44.49; 90. Joe Price 45.22.
Boxing Day Round the Lakes Poole 10k (Dave Parsons reports)
Boxing Day turned out to be a cold, frosty morning but with virtually no wind, conditions were near perfect for the annual 10k race around the lakes in Poole Park, organised by Poole AC.
There were 330 finishers this year with no less than 17 of these from BAC. Clearly, there had not been too much indulgence of food and drink on Christmas Day as some 9 of the BAC athletes achieved PBs which augurs well for the coming year. There was also a string of category podium places from the team.
First BAC man home was Rob Mctaggart in 3rd place in 33.42, followed closely by Josh Cole who was 5th in 33.54 (PB). Completing the team was Jez Bragg, 10th in 34.23 (PB) ensuring that BAC won the Mens Team Competition with 18 points.
First BAC lady home was Gemma Bragg finishing in a time of 39.16 (PB) and she was 3rd lady overall (1st Senior).
In addition to the above, a further 6 BAC athletes achieved PBs as follows:- Graeme Miller 14th in 35.35 (1st V40 – 2nd O40 prizewinner); Paul Hill 15th in 35.36; Ross Smith 28th in 37.14; Brandon Meredith 60th in 39.50 (2nd U17); Steve Cox 87th in 41.56; Seb Hearn 110th in 43.52 (3rd U17).
The remaining BAC finishers were:- Simon Way 23rd in 36.40 (3rd V45); Simon Hearn 63rd in 39.58 (this made a total of 11 of ourrunners breaking the 40 minute barrier); Jud Kirk 72nd in 40.40 (1st V55); George Way 79th in 41.17; Dave Parsons 178th in 48.42 (2nd V65); Will Price 276th in 57.54; Mark Annis 330th in 1.42.24.
There must be special mention of Mark‘s performance as this was the 41st consecutive year that he has competed at the Boxing Day races. For many years, Mark was a very talented runner for BAC until he was diagnosed with a serious illness which prevented him from competing at the level he previously achieved. He has continued to make this race his annual ‘challenge’ and all of us who have known him for so many years commend him. We are rightly proud of him.
Meanwhile, Toby Chapman was competing in a 4 mile Boxing Day race in his home town, organised by Clevedon AC. This is a very popular annual race, attracting 1,000 or so entries, and, of the 879 who finished this year, Toby was 9th in 20.47.
An amazing total of 419 finished the Poole Parkrun in Poole Park on Christmas Day, and the first of these was our very own Paul Hill, running in this event for the first time. Also competing were SanjaiSharman, finishing 10th, and Ross Smith. Ross‘ 170th position in 25.06 belies his true ability, considering his PB at Poole is 17.30 and his recent superb Duathlon performances. Ross was clearly saving himself for the next day when, as noted above, he achieved a 10k PB. The Parkruns (as with most races) could not take place without the volunteers who turn out week after week, and particular thanks are due to the large number who turned out on Christmas Day to enable the Poole Parkrun to go ahead. Having also achieved a 10kPB (and his ambition to go under 40 minutes) on Boxing Day, Paul went on to win (yes, win, not 2nd place this time!) the BournemouthParkrun on 27 December, in which, of a total of 201, Paul was joined by Jud Kirk, Steve Cox, Helen Ambrosen, and one of our youngsters, Amelie Scott. At the same time, of the 415 running in Poole Park, Graeme Miller was 8th, and George Way 25th in the Poole Parkrun.
Apologies to all those – especially to Josh King – who ran in the Boscombe Pier 5k, part of a series organised by Poole Runners, on Friday 12 December, which was overlooked in the last report. Fresh from his fantastic run at Popham in the Hampshire Cross CountryLeague the week before, Josh ran an amzing 16.36 to win the 5k race outright. Also running well were Jez and Gemma Bragg, with Jez finishing 5th in 17.18, and Gemma 24th (3rd lady) in 19.18. JudKirk wasn’t that far behind, 37th in19.52, and 1st 75-79 was TomCochrane in 24.38. Yes, Tom really is over 75 years of age, hard to believe! Finishing 101st of the total of 117 was Will Price in 26.50.
Just over a week later, Gemma was running a marathon PB! On 21st December, Gemma competed in the Portsmouth Coastal WatersideMarathon and was 1st lady in a time of 3.09.42. This course probably isn’t particularly fast, although flat, but much of it along footpaths with variable surfaces, so well done to Gemma on this achievement!
Finishing just outside the medals on 21 December was TobyChapman, 4th (medals to the first three, of course!) in the Wellington Monument race, organised by Taunton Athletic Club, near to Toby‘s present home. The race is 6.27 miles long, and, like the Portsmouth Coastal Marathon, appears to run over ‘variable surfaces’ with over 1000 metres along bridle paths.
Another BAC ‘multi-achiever’ is Ross Smith who, having finished 2nd in an off-road duathlon a week earlier, ran a time of 17.30 in the Poole Parkrun on Saturday 20 December, to finish 13th of a total of 509. Meanwhile, in the Bournemouth Parkrun, Sebastian Hearn was 10th of the 225 finishers, in 20.09, Jud Kirk was 11th in 20.15, Steve Cox 16th in 20.45, Paul Consani (rapidly returning to form) 34th in 22.53 and Louise Price 83rd in 24.53. Missing from his traditional 2nd position was Paul Hill, taking a short rest after all his races!
Further congratulations are due to Gemma Bragg, for organising a very enjoyable Christmas meal attended at Prezzo, Bournemouth, by more than 20 of BAC‘s road/xc runners and friends. To say that the evening was a success is an understatement, and it will surely go a long way to cementing the club spirit which is needed to ensure that 2015 will be as successful for BAC as 2014.
Finally – MERRY CHRISTMAS AND GOOD RUNNING IN 2015!
Some of the top spots in the Parkruns were taken by BAC athletes on Saturday 13 December. In Poole Park, Jon Sharkey was the outright winner of the Poole Parkrun, with Simon Way 5th of the 430 finishers. Simon is going to have to watch his heels, as not far behind was his Son, George, 14th overall, and first in his age category JM 15-17. In Kings Park, Billy McGreevy was third of a field of 208 in the Bournemouth Parkrun, and also running were JudKirk, Steve Cox, Dave Parsons, Paul Consani (good to see Paul returning from a long-term injury) and Will Price.
In Spain, Antonio Ruiz, who spent some time recently competing for BAC, and helping with coaching, before returning to his native country, continues to show BAC colours. Recently, Antonio was 57th (of about 1500), in 37 minutes, in the Daimiel 10k, part of his training for the Seville Marathon next year.
BAC was represented at the Downton Half Marathon on 30 November by Sanjai Sharma and Janie Chapman, in a race which Sanjai described as an “eye-opener”, over a course which an organiser would say is “undulating”, but nevertheless scenic and very well organised. Sanjai was 21st, of 363 finishers, and Janie was 43rd, and 3rd FV.
Paul Hill reverted to his traditional 2nd place of the 188 finishers in the Bournemouth Parkrun on 5 December, and was joined in the race by BAC legend, John Boyes, visiting from his home in France. John, who is a life member of BAC, has a marathon PB of 2.13, and still holds the Kings Park 10000m track record. Also running was Cherry Sheffrin, and congratulations to Cherry as she was the 1st lady to cross the line. Other BAC runners were Jud Kirk, a Bournemouth Parkrun regular, Will Price, and a welcome sight was BAC youngster Louis Baldry, competing for the first time. Meanwhile, all three BAC athletes who took part in the PooleParkrun ran PBs for that course. An ever-improving George Way was 17th (and 2nd in his JM 15-17 category) of the 501 finishers, and not far behind were Nikki Sandell (1st FV), Chris O’Brien and Alison Humphrey (known to many as Ali Barnes).
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 100kWorld 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!
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.
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.
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. NikkiSandell 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 BroadstoneQuarter 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 CarolineRowley, 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 Bournemouth, Paul 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 AlisonHumphrey (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, JezBragg 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.
Maybe not actually road running, but it’s worth mentioning RossSmith‘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!
The Club Championship was inaugurated some years ago by JonSharkey, 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)?
Success at the penultimate Dorset Road Race League event, a solid performance in the North of England, and two unexpected BACParkrunners feature this week.
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, SimonMunro 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 BAC. Nikki 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.
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 HalfMarathon 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 hisage category VM65-69, but definitely not a PB!) and WillPrice. The other BAC athlete unexpectedly turning up was TonyChutter, 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…………