HRRL Stubbington Green 10k, SXCL Manor Farm Country Park, 2014 Awards Dinner

The conditions in the last two races that Farnham Runners have taken part in could not have been more different. For the Stubbington Green 10k, the 6th event in the Hampshire Road Race League, the weather was ideal, the sun was out, it wasn’t cold or windy and the one puddle could be avoided.

The following week conditions at the fifth Southern Cross Country League race were dire, wet beforehand, wet during the race and wet afterwards. The mud, though not deep, was continuous, with firm patches almost non-existent over the 4.8mile route around the Hamble estuary – the sort of race that the runners could say they enjoyed when they were back home warm and dry and could congratulate themselves on turning out to support the club.

Stubbington Green 10k

Stubbington Green Runners did a splendid job of organising both races. The 10k always draws large numbers of “personal best” hunters and there were some happy faces among the Farnham Runners contingent on the way home. Seven had improved on their previous results, some by several minutes, and eight clocked under 40 minutes. Two of the ladies were among the prizewinners while several of the men were highly placed in their categories, two of them fourth.

Leading them in was Andrew Ellison, his impressive time of thirty-five minutes 57 seconds giving him a fine 4th in the M45 category against fierce opposition. Overall he was 37th out of 1516 finishers. Next came the still improving Sarah Hill, who, after overtaking at 7km, was just pipped on the line by local rival Lesley Locks from Hart Road Runners. Her excellent time of 36-18 placed her 3rd lady, and 2nd in her category (46th overall).

Ian Carley was pleased with a return to form in 36-26 (48th, 6th M45), while Richard Lovejoy achieved a new best by 30 seconds in 37-02. Final scorer for the league “A” team was a beaming James Warren whose 37-59 was a PB by 90 seconds. This gave them top spot in Divison Two and boosted their hopes of promotion next season. The “B” team of Rob Gilchrist (38-40, PB by almost 2 mins), Mike Anderson 39-14 (4th M55), Stuart Williamson (39-17, PB by 1 min) and Colin Addison (41-05) came a fine 2nd in B Division 2. Matt Dellar led the C string with a 3 minute PB of 41-35. Mike Walberton (41-35), Martin Billett (41-24, 11th M55), and Neil Ambrose (42-50, PB by over 4 minutes) contributed to the team ranking of 5th. Terry Copeland (43-36) and Nick Hill (46-58) provided backup. (Times given are chip times but positions are based on times from the gun.)

Second for the Farnham ladies Jane Georghiou recorded 44-36 for first in category, followed by Kayleigh Copeland (48-05). Tori Shaw was delighted with a PB of 49-04, ahead of Wendy Carley (51-25), Kay Copeland (52-37) and Cyra Parkes (64-18). The A team came a very useful 2nd in Division Two while the B team was 4th.

SXCL Manor Farm Country Park

The soggy cross-country was the day after Farnham Runners Awards Dinner, which may have had something to do with the depleted numbers. Only seven men and four ladies flew the flag for Farnham at Manor Farm Country Park. The first club vest to appear out of the gloom was that of a smiling Matt Dellar in 36th. Newcomers Ian Marshall (47th), Neil Ambrose (55th) John Phillips (90th) and Tim Farrant (132nd) gave the men 13th place.

For the ladies a strong run by Charlotte Hanson put her a fine18th, Jane Georghiou was 26th, while the determination of Eloise Stradling (37th) gave her a well-deserved place in the team that came 7th. Tori Shaw, now enjoying shorter distances, finished 64th.

The men and ladies combined result was joint 8th* (TBC) out of 20 teams. Because one race is discounted Farnham Runners are still 3rd on aggregate, with just one race to go – on March 2nd!

Farnham Runners Awards Dinner

At the 2014 Awards Dinner, left to right: Becky Martin with Steve Parker Trophy, group photo of awards winners, Sarah Hill and Andrew Ellison celebrating

The previous night was the club’s annual Awards Dinner held at the Frensham Pond Hotel, had a “Las Vegas” theme. After by a lively introduction from Richard Sheppard, Chairman Steve Kitney outlined the activities and successes of the club during 2013. He went on to present the numerous awards:

Sarah Hill won the Ladies’ Marathon Trophy for her amazing new club record of 2-52-57 while Stephen Nicholls took the men’s Paul Charlton Memorial Trophy for his time of 2-58-50.

The Prince Memorial Trophy for ladies’ improvement in the Alice Holt 10km race between 2012 and 2013 went to Kay Copeland for her improvement of 3 minutes 24 seconds. The equivalent award for the men is the Herbie Memorial Trophy and this went to her husband Terry Copeland for improving by 2 mins 45 secs.

There were trophies for three Grand Prix Leagues.

The cross-country awards went to Men: Charles Ashby, Ian Carley, Steve Kitney, Terry Copeland, Andrew Ellison, Bob Brimicombe, Chris Cramp. Ladies: Jane Georghiou, Kay Copeland, Lindsay Bamford, Elaine Ashby, Tori Shaw, Charlotte Hanson, Kayleigh Copeland, Christy Roxburgh.

There were tee-shirt prizes to the three who had completed all six Southern Cross Country League events this year: Charles Ashby, Steve Kitney and Terry Copeland.

The trophies for Hampshire Road League participation and performances went to Men: Andrew Ellison, Richard Lovejoy, Ian Carley, Chris Cramp, Mike Walberton, and Charles Ashby. Ladies: Jane Georghiou , Lindsay Bamford, Lucy Enstock, Eloise Stradling, Emma Drinkwater and Catrin Petty. The third league recognised participation in local races: Craig Tate-Grimes, Mike Walberton, Elaine Ashby, Alistair Wilson, Charles Ashby, Abigail Ashby, Tori Shaw, Mike Ashworth, Sue Taylor, Scott Salmon.

The Steve Parker Award for the person who has done most for the club during 2013 went to Becky Martin for her unstinting work in organising the Awards Dinner and helping with social events.

For the first time there was a “Chairman’s Award” which went to Chris Cramp for his constant positive support to the club in a variety of ways as well as his own achievements in gaining a whole set of personal best times over a number of distances.