HRRL Hayling 10 miler and SXCL Queen Elizabeth Country Park

HRRL Hayling 10 miler

Farnham Runners clinched encouraging team results in the Haying 10 miler, the third event in the Hampshire Road League calendar. Organised by Havant AC, it first heads north from the coast before turning south again on an off road section of over a mile on the track of a disused railway, the Hayling Billy. It then heads west, before retracing this route to the start of a mile along the sea front. A reverse of direction towards the West then saw runners heading towards the finish into a noticeable breeze. After an early start for the 9.30 race, conditions were chilly at the start but soon warmed up in the sunshine. which enhanced some spectacular coastal views for those with time to look.

Farnham Runners came back with three age group prizes, seven top ten age group positions and eight personal best times among their twenty-two entrants.

Uncatchable in the clubs’ Grand Prix 2019 table, James Clarke chopped 44 seconds from his personal best, despite the off road section and the wind. He placed an excellent eighth of the 592 finishers and second in the M35 category in 58 minutes 34 seconds. Matt Saker won second prize in the competitive M 50 category in 1:02:21. Harvey Wickham in 1:05:11 and Neil Ambrose in 1:09:50, completed the A team score to place them very useful sixth of ten clubs in the top flight.

Steve Bailey took over a minute from his previous best in 1:12:22 to lead in the B team, backed up by Chris Cramp in 1:13:31, Justin Clarke, 8th M60, in 1:14:04 and Damian Probett in 1:18:11 (PB by over 1 minute). This team placed eleventh in their table.

Heading the Cs was Craig Tate-Grimes, who took 16 seconds from his previous best for 1:18:30, followed by Ali Hardaway, recovering from injury in 1:18:33. Final C team members were Steve Murphy in 1:24:04 and Keith Toms in 1:34:38. This team was sixth in B Division 2. Douglas Blyth was fourth in the M70 category in 1:47:25, to beat his own club M75 10 mile record.

Fourth senior lady, the ever improving Louise Granell took almost 2 minutes from her PB with a fine time of 1:12:22. Linda Tyler placed sixth in the F50 category with 1:18:30, while Jane Georghiou was first F60 in 1:21:12 to go seventh on the UK F65 2019 10 mile Road/Multi-terrain table. Like the Farnham men, this A team came sixth in the top division.

Not far back was Lindsay Bamford in 1:21:52, with Clair Bailey’s 1:34:52 giving her a PB by 38 seconds and second place in the Farnham Runners’ ladies’ B team. Tina Harrison completed the B score in 1:36:08. This B team was ninth.

A complete C team of Vicky Goodluck (with a faster gun time) in 1:39:12, Jane Probett in 1:38:56 and Claire Arnott in 1:40:51 gave the club sixth place in B Division 2.

SXCL Queen Elizabeth Country Park

After the race director warned runners of the usual hazards of slippery mud and tree roots, a two minute silence was observed before the start of the second round of the Southern Cross-Country League at Queen Elizabeth Country Park, organised by Portsmouth Joggers. Rain the previous day meant care had to be taken and the steep hills of the 5 mile route soon began.

Twenty eight Farnham Runners of all standards enjoyed the challenge of the course, the beautiful setting and the camaraderie of this league. They were rewarded with a joint fifth placing overall, with the ladies sixth and the men eighth out of the 24 clubs in the league.

Stalwart Charlie Hill-Venning led them in, in 29th of over 400. Harvey Wickham in 37th got the better Andy McCall in 42nd. John Hill-Venning in 63rd and Neil Ambrose in 75th completed the scoring team.

For the ladies Louise Granell put in an excellent performance for 8th place, followed by Gabriella Hitchcock in a fine 17th and final scorer Linda Tyler in 42nd. Lindsay Bamford was close behind in 44th and both she and Linda, as well as Craig Tate-Grimes, ran to and from the event from Petersfield in preparation for a forthcoming marathon and so had covered 5 miles before the race.

Everyone gave their all for the club but those who did not succeed in getting scoring places this time were Men: Tim Cummins 120, Steve Bailey 124, Justin Clarke 136, Damian Probett 152, Adam Harrison 166, James Goodwin 202, Craig Tate-Grimes 220, Geoff Brown 259, Ladies: Sue Taylor 65, Jane Georghiou 68, Catherine Timson 106 (debut), Clair Bailey 126, Jane Probett 130, Penny Schnabel 135 (debut), Kathy Brown 166, Pauline Hamilton 169, Julia Tagg 171, Jacquie Browne 182, Jackie Wilkinson 194.