HRRL Alton 10 and Belfast, Three Forts and Brighton marathons
A record number of 44 Farnham Runners finished the Hampshire Road League Alton Ten, over 9% of the field. This year the hilly course was made much more demanding by soaring temperatures and humidity and these were reflected by increased times.
The Farnham contingent were rewarded with good team results. The men have calculated that their A team will definitely win promotion back to the top flight after their second place in Division Two in this race, staying top on aggregate. They were led by an in-form Richard Lovejoy who clocked 1 hour 03 minutes 46 seconds, for an excellent 17th place of 478. Next came Andrew Ellison in 1:06:10, 31st and 10th in the highly competitive M40 category. He was followed by Stuart Haig (1:08:51, 15th M40) and James Clarke 1:09:12.
Charlie Hill-Venning (1:09:47) led in the B string that took 3rd on the day for an aggregate of 5th, safe in B Division 1. The other three were a close-packed Gerald Wyatt (1.13:04), John Hill-Venning (1:13:41) and John Phillips (1:13:58).
The “C”s could still be promoted to their top division after taking top at this event and now lying 5th on aggregate. They were Ian Marshall (1:14:16), Mike Taylor (1:14:55), Rob Gilchrist (1:15:23) and Terry Copeland (1:17:08).
The ladies A stream, 6th on the day, dropped one place to 6th in Division One, still safe of ten clubs.
The reliable Eloise Stradling led them in, 12th senior lady in 1:22:07. Not far back was a delighted Alice Healy, gaining confidence with every race, 13th senior lady in 1:23:20. Despite the course and conditions this was a personal best by 7 minutes. Jane Georghiou, who recently won the bronze medal for her age group in the British Masters 2016 10k championship at Olympic Park, completed the team in 1:25:17, 1st W60.
Linda Tyler running in Farnham colours for the first time made a valuable contribution to head the “B”s in 1:29:03, 5th W55. Tina Harrison (1.29:13) was close behind, while Billy McCulloch still made this squad after cycling there from Farnham (1:30:20). They came 5th in Division 2 on the day, maintaining 6th with two matches to go.
Other Farnham times: Alistair Hardaway 1:17:18, Mark Maxwell 1:18:07, Paul Mackie 1:18:24, Tim Cummins 1:19:44, Nick Hill 1:19:48, Keith Marshall 1:20:06, Jeremy Skedge 1:21:23, Geoff Brown 1:22:39, Hallam Foster 1:23:36, Peter Chapman 1:24:44, Terry Steadman 1:25:25, Greg Strutton 1:25:58, John Walker 1:28:15, Darren Carins 1:28:54, Mike Walberton 1:29:54, Simon Brander 1:29:53, Kayleigh Copeland 1:32:00, Kay Copeland 1:33:23, Emma Dawson 1:35:54, Mary Denise Fitzgerald 1:35:55, Lina Haines 1:36:00, Howard Inns 1:39:00, Helen Bracey 1:46:04, Rebecca Grant 1:46:02, Jenni Rayner 1:58:54, Kathy Brown 2:11:14.
Belfast, Three Forts and Brighton marathons
Stuart Williamson took 4 minutes from his personal best in the May bank holiday Belfast Marathon to record a splendid 3:09:26, 13th in his age category and 104th overall.
Stuart Haig chose the off road Three Forts Marathon for his first attempt. The distance of this is in fact a mile longer at 27.2 miles and includes climbs of Chanctonbury and Cissbury Rings, a total of 3450ft of ascent. He was justifiably proud of his time of 3:47:25 and 12th place of 358 finishers.
Nine Farnham Runners were among over 9,000 who completed the Brighton Marathon, the biggest field so far in its seven year history. Mike Taylor was first home for the club in 3:34:23, followed by Steve Tyler in 3:35:18. Paul Mackie, John Walker and Tara Hunt were encouraged by all the fantastic support and atmosphere and delighted with new personal bests of 3:43:17, 3:46:33 and 4:05:01 respectively. Alistair Wilson enjoyed the race and clocked 4:34:16 while Ollie Drewery found his first marathon tough (4:36:15). Shirley Perrett raised £300 for the National Rheumatoid Arthritis Society with her 4:53:10, while Jenni Rayner recorded 5:56:44 on her debut.