2015 Club Championship and various marathons

Club Championship

The race

Left to right above: Ian Carley and Sarah Hill running, and Lindsay Bamford and Terry Steadman with their trophies

Enthusiastic support for the Farnham Runners Club Championship 2015 led to a record number of 68 in the 10km race and 20 in the 5km, some no doubt tempted by the Hog Roast on offer afterwards.

Organised by race director Craig Tate-Grimes assisted by Cyra Parkes and numerous volunteers, the 10km kept to the same challenging route as that chosen for the inaugural staging in 1991. Mostly on road but diverting onto Bourne Heath for a steep ascent and decent, it then re-joins the road for a hard slog to the finish on the Bourne Green. Favourable weather conditions helped produce some quick times.

Competition was keen in most of the age groups with the M40 category particularly well represented. A regular contender for a top position and winner in 2011 and 2012, a delighted Ian Carley was first to cross the line in an excellent 36 minutes 47 seconds. His efforts were rewarded with the impressive overall men’s champion trophy as well as the M40 shield. Amazingly, just a few steps behind was the first lady, Sarah Hill clocking her fourth ladies’ record. She shaved another five seconds off her time last year, finishing in 36:51. She was presented with the lady’s overall trophy in addition to the F35 shield. In the mix to be overall victor but outpaced near the end was James Clarke, first senior in 36:59. Almost half a minute later but still with excellent times came Rob Gilchrist (2nd M40) in 37:27, Jirka Zaloudik (2nd senior male) in 37:36 and a fraction behind him Stuart Morel (3rd M40) in 37:37. Last year’s overall winner James Warren had to settle for 39:03, followed by Rupert Kemp in 39:52, despite v eering off course for 20 seconds near the end. Mark Maxwell (39:53) went for an impressive sprint finish to get the better of Stuart Williamson in 40:02.

Not admitting to his current form in advance, Stuart Morgan was a convincing winner of the M50 category for the second year running in 40:17. Gerald Wyatt, 3rd senior male in 40:21 was ahead of former M50 winners, Mike Walberton and Colin Addison who clocked 41:33 and 41:58 respectively. Expected M60 champion, Terry Steadman was true to form in 48:17, ahead of Phil Masters (51:08) and Mike Dunkley (57:44). This year for the first time two in the M70 category took part: Peter Strange in 58:59 and Douglas Blyth in 61:54.

Second lady and second in the F35 category was ultra-runner Susie Chan in an excellent 42:11. A jubilant Eloise Stradling finished as third lady and first Under 23 in 44:48, just ahead of first senior lady Charlotte Hanson in 44:57. Next, F55 Jane Georghiou ran a steady pace for 47:41, followed by second and third senior ladies, Nicola Douglas in 47:48 and Sarah Marjoram in 48:18. Lindsay Bamford again took the F45 title in 48:36 ahead of third F35 Tara Hunt (49:14) and second and third F45s, Billy McCulloch (49:21) and Kay Copeland in 51:05. Second Under 23 was Alice Healy in 55:18.

Other times: Men Matt Dellar 40:52, Tim Cummins 41:11, John Hill-Venning 41:45, Shaun Marsden 41:47,Stephen Elliott-Nicholls 42:13, Ben Roseveare 42:30, Mike Taylor 42:48, Stuart Haig 42:58, Alistair Hardaway 43:35, John Phillips 43:43, Jeremy Skedge 43:55, Neil Ambrose 44:06, Terry Copeland 44:27, Ian Marshall 44:37, Paul Mackie 44:43, Steve Bailey 45:49, Chris Cramp 46:47, Keith Marshall 46:55, Steve Kitney 47:12, Darren Cooper 47:15, Paul Day 47:19, Mike Hitchings 47:56, Tristan Greaves 48:49, Robert Peet 48:54, Greg Strutton 49:04, Damien Probert 50:44, Alistair Wilson 59:39.

Ladies Vicki Clarke 49:08, Emma Dawson 51:36, Lina Haines 52:50, Becky Martin 53:11, Annabel Sommerfelt 54:17, Tori Shaw 54:29, Mary Denise Fitzgerald 54:32, Tina Harrison 55:54, Catrin Petty 60:27.

Seventeen who completed the 2015 club’s Absolute Beginners course, co-ordinated by Jacquie Browne and led by Craig Tate-Grimes and other volunteers were pleased to be able to run 5km in respectable times: Sean Ennor 26:49, Karen Harrington 26:57, Mel Ah-Kan 29:33, Carol Dare 29:45, Emma Raw 30:40, Susie Simms 30:42, Lianne Sherlock 30:47, Caroline Phillips 32:03, Jacquie Browne 32:58, Jean Drummond 33:00, Nigel Nicholson 33:34, Millie Creber 34:02, Nancy Verboom 34:09, Maria Edwards 35:50, Angie Mehew 36:44, Rachel Kapur 37:16, John Browne 37:46. They were joined by potential members Grace Carley 26:23, Sophie Sitwell 26:55 and Sophie Browne 29:34.

The “Bake-off”

Selection of cakes and desserts entered into the 2105 Club Championship Bake-off competition Selection of cakes and desserts entered into the 2105 Club Championship Bake-off competition Selection of cakes and desserts entered into the 2105 Club Championship Bake-off competition

To add to the social occasion a popular “Bake-Off” (above) elicited some deserts of a high standard, enthusiastically consumed after the hog roast. Greg Strutton took home the prize, joined by a delighted junior winner Thomas Bailey.

Various marathons

Meanwhile marathoners have been flying the flag for Farnham far and wide.

Marathon man Hillary Carter completed his 168th, running for the first time in France, in the Marathon de Carcasonne with a very respectable time of 4.36.27 and 8th in his category in full sun and a temperature of 30 degrees! Just one week later he completed the Liverpool “Rock & Roll” Marathon encouraging a beaming Peter Strange to a new M70 club record of 4:48:16. Carter had run the Blackpool Marathon (4.16.51, 7th M55) and the Brathay Windermere Marathon in 4.24. 57 (M55 16th) in the preceding weeks. Geoff and Kathy Brown also ran the challenging Brathay course in 4.00.56 and 5.22.22 respectively.

Peter Chapman recorded a good sub 4 hour time at Riga, capital of Latvia (3.52.04,) while Chris Beattie struggled with an injury for 4.52.05 in Vienna.

Sean Smith had to settle for a time most can only dream of – 3.07.52 in the “Courants de la Liberte” Marathon, Caen, Normandy after his 2:55 there last year.

Closer to home Stuart Williamson earned a podium third place in the inaugural charity Starfish Bexhill-on-Sea Marathon with 3:22:00.