As the club moves from summer into autumn results continue to come thick and fast, with Almosts in action in all distances from 10k to ultra marathons this weekend. John Skelton completed the Cotswold Running Cotswold Way Century, running the entire length of the Cotswold Way in a superb time of 25:51:09.
Ian Coggin and Cos Pearson took on the Badminton Trail 50k, finishing in 5:14:12 and 5:55:23 respectively. It’s testament to how much Cos’ running has improved this year that she completed the 50k ultra faster than she has run some of her marathons.
Also at Badminton a handful of Almosts took on the trail half marathon, which turned out to be 2.5k over distance and unexpectedly lumpy. First home for the club was Ela Antosiewicz in 2:21:07. She was followed by new member Sarah Argyrou (2:39:06); Anthony Storr (2:52:52); Deb Cartlidge (2:59:58) and Karla Cleverley (4:05:42).
Sarah and Steve Wallbridge and Debbie Masding continued their focussed training for next month’s London and Newport marathons, completing the Rhayader Round the Lakes 30k on the roads of the beautiful Elan Valley. Steve crossed the line in 3:06:55 with Sarah and Debbie coming home together in 3:36:10 and 3:36:13.
Two local events ran half marathon and 10k options over the weekend. The stand out performance at the Dymock half marathon was Kieran Keating, whose 1:36:15 on an undulating course was good enough for first MV60. Next in – and recording the same chip time of 1:53:18 – were Richard Knightley and Mike Daly. Ed Munro (1:56:49) and Francis Bull (1:58:52), busy finalising his preparations for Manchester marathon, also recorded sub two finishes. The club’s sole lady representative over the half marathon distance, Lorraine Taylor, completed with Neil Tring in 2:11:05, followed home by Mike Line (2:29:59) and Bob Spawton (2:35:07). In the Dymock 10k Kim Lewington recorded 58:44 and Kerry White 1:16:50.
Further south a trio of Almosts completed the Bristol half marathon. First home for the club in 1:28:38 was Ben Taylor. Kevin Dryburgh was next in 1:45:35 and, completing his 94th half marathon in 2:03:22, was Christopher Benjamin. In the Bristol 10k Jamie Courtenay recorded a 49:12 finish, with Paul Jones not far behind (51:49). Kate Freeman came home comfortably under the hour in 58:03, with Adrian Courtenay completing the club’s contingent in 1:08:27.
Kathy and Paul Haig took on the How Hard Can It Be Events Yabba Dabba Do half marathon, in the Chasewater nature park and watersports centre in Burntwood, coming in together in 2:54:11.
There was a large contingent of Almosts at the Angels 10k, the fifth race in the Gloucestershire AAAs road race series and a county championship race with gold, silver and bronze medals up for grabs in the various age categories. In the event there were rich pickings for many members, with Ela Antosiewicz, Craig Jackson, Iris Mayo, Peter Morris, Lee Ormerod, Ali Shaikh, Lorraine Taylor and Olivia Wiles all picking up awards. The following chip times were recorded: Peter Morris (44:53); Lee Ormerod (45:06); Neil Tring (46:45); Ali Shaikh (49:11); Craig Jackson (PB - 49:33); Allan Green (52:00); Olivia Wiles (52:39); Ela Antosiewicz (PB - 53:07); Cos Pearson (1:00:03 just one day after the Badminton 50k!); Lorraine Taylor (1:00:52); Josh Rimell (1:02:47); Phil Jeyes (1:03:08); Ollie Nolan (1:09:05); Iris Mayo (1:09:08) and Dave Nelson, on the comeback trail from illness, in 1:12:43.
A trio of Almosts took on the Wright Hassall Regency 10k in Royal Leamington Spa. First home was Mark Wreford-Bush in 44:10, followed by Steve Yarnold in 59:24 and Helen Yarnold in 1:19:18.
Robert Foord scored a PB at Aberbeeg parkrun (20:04) and it surely cannot be much longer before he breaches the twenty-minute barrier. At King George V Playing Field parkrun Kev Dendy recorded his 400th parkrun. Almost Athletes also hosted a takeover at KGVPF by way of a farewell to Run Director and longstanding member Claire Gallagher, who is moving away from Cheltenham.
Hannah Brown had to contend with being swum under and over yet she battled through to complete the two-mile Swim Serpentine event in 1:16:00 to bag the final medal in the London Classics Challenge, having previously run the Virgin Money London Marathon and biked the Prudential Ride 100.
In non-running news, the club recently held its AGM at the Civil Service Club. Stepping down from the committee after several years’ invaluable service were Claire Hawes and Phil Jeyes (although Phil will thankfully be maintaining his role as the club’s Race Director). Both were presented with leaving gifts as a token of the club’s sincere appreciation for their efforts. Vicky Earls was elected to the committee. Fiona Barnes was presented with the Doug Waymark trophy by Doug’s partner Lola Lewis in recognition of her volunteer contribution to the club and Virginia Pawlyn was presented with the Rich Walklate trophy by new Chair Peter Mitchener in recognition of both her stellar running achievements and her volunteer contribution to the club. The minutes and accounts for year ending 31 March 2021 can be found on the website (‘About Us ‘ then ‘Committee’ tab).