HRRL Eastleigh 10k, Fleet and Reading Half Marathons
The Eastleigh 10k, the ninth of the 12-round Hampshire Road League series, clashed this year with the local Fleet half marathon so Farnham Runners had a difficult choice between supporting the club in the league or tackling the longer distance, ideally timed for those wishing to judge pace and fitness before a spring marathon.
The club’s results included some creditable high UK age ranked performances, with two in the top four and several in the top 100 for the year so far.
Twelve from Farnham took part in the Eastleigh race. The men’s “A” team placed ninth of ten in the top division, keeping them ninth on aggregate, so all depends on performance in the last three events as the bottom two clubs will be relegated. The ladies “A” team claimed third in Division Two on the day, to stay second on aggregate, a promotional spot. The men’s B team were fourteenth but stay a mid-table seventh of fifteen on aggregate, while the ladies had no B team but stay fifth overall. As the three lowest scoring races for each club will be discounted at the end of the season, promotion is not impossible.
Veteran Mike Anderson could not be caught by any other club member for an excellent 36 minutes 50 seconds and second in the M55 category. This puts him an inspirational 3rd M55 in the UK for 2015. Returning to fitness Ian Carley paced sensibly for 37:05 (12th M45). Showing his potential talent, Jirka Zaloudik clocked an amazing 37:46 in his debut at this distance, paying towards the end for a very fast start. Matt Dellar was pleased with a new personal best of 40:17 as final “A” team scorer.
Not far behind, a delighted Martin Billett clocked an impressive 40:28, sixth in the M55 category to go 55th in the UK table. This, along with Mike Walberton’s 41st and Terry Copeland’s 91st gives Farnham Runners four men in the top UK 100 for 10k.
Chris Cramp was only eight seconds form his personal best in 44:28 followed by Tim Farrant in 46:16. Doing well in the M70 category Douglas Blyth’s 54:44 gave him a new personal best and 38th in the UK M70 2015 table.
Charlotte Hanson led in the ladies with a new PB of 42:20, while Nicola Douglas clocked a fine 44:08 in her debut at 10k. Louise Davies recorded her best for a while in 49:48. The enthusiastic Mary Denise Fitzgerald was denied an A team scoring place this time (PB, 50:54) and there were no other ladies for a B team.
Fleet Half Marathon
There were some promising results at the Fleet half marathon, with many gaining impressive personal best times, Eloise Stradling by an astounding 18 minutes and Paul Mackie by 5 minutes. Jane Georghiou was the W60 winner and goes 4th on the UK table for 2015 so far.
First Farnham Runner back was Rob Gilchrist who used the race as part of his rigorous training for the forthcoming London Marathon. He gained a promising time of 1:21:21, 91st of 2446 finishers. Next, Jason East was also pleased with a PB 1.21:58 while a beaming Stuart Morel (1:22:53) deducted 4 minutes from his previous best. Richard Lovejoy (1:25:29), Julian Mann (1:26:01), Stuart Williamson (PB, 1:26:02), Charles Ashby (1:28:19) and Stuart Taylor (1:28:25) were all comfortably under 1 hour 30 but newcomer Stuart Haig will have to wait a bit longer for this target (1:30:09).
First Farnham lady was Eloise Stradling, her 1:36:02 placing her an excellent 57th out of 810. Jane Georghiou was 90th in 1:40:37 with Jessica Page next for Farnham in 1:51:50 (PB 3 mins). Other times: John Phillips 1:38:22, Mark Maxwell 1:38:30, Paul Mackie 1:40:05, Steve Bailey 1:44:57, Anne Snelson 1:52:24, Craig Tate-Grimes 1:55:41, Alistair Wilson 1:55:04, Tina Harrison 1:57:43 (PB 3.5 mins), Shirley Perrett 1:59:44 (5th F60), Ian George 2:02:49, Helen Scullard 2:17:30, Elaine Ashby 2:31:38, Jenny Andrews 2:33:35.
Reading Half Marathon
On the same day Rebecca Ashcroft, who began running with Farnham Runners’ Absolute Beginners course last April completed her first half marathon at Reading in 2:06:51, accompanied by Lina Haines (1:57:58.)