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BA Athletics Club News Digest 2nd March 2015


  • Thursday 5th March - Magic Mile - Bath Road from 12:45
  • Sunday 15th March - BAAC Cross Country Championships - Cranford Park 10:30
  • Wednesday 18th March - Club Inhouse Event and Social "Mad March Twister" Heston Club House from 18:00

New members and non-members of all fitness levels and abilities are welcome at all of these events.  The full diary of club featured events is on the club website at: Diary.shtml. Updated Feb20th.

Running related gossip and chat: Facebook "BA Runner" (link:

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2014 Club Annual Awards  - the results

Our annual awards were issued last week.  For those who weren't there, and those who were but weren't taking notes, details of the winners are on the baRunner website at  But to save you clicking on the link here are the details:

Award 2014 Recipient Reason
Chairman’s Award Alastair Heslop For the work he has put into our two flagship events, the Speedbird Ladies 5K and the Concorde 5 miles, for many years, and (hopefully) for years to come.
Alamo Trophy Lissa Pritchard and Deby Helsdon For services on the dance floor.  At the World Airline Road Race in Dublin back in October they showed up all of the non-Irish present by performed an Irish jig then later grabbed everyone's attention with their Ghost Busters Dance finishing with encouraging everyone else onto the dance floor from the start of the evening's "disco"*.
Brian Forrester 10K Trophy Paul Knechtl, Adrian Haines and Dave Dixon Our three leading runners rolled back the years, proving themselves to be not only the best MV40 airline team in the world, but also the best men’s team of any age in Dublin!
Round The Block Trophy Neil Frediani Took this competition to a new level, with great performances at Club In House events and Runs of the Month.  He represented BA in competitions against other clubs, picking up valuable points in the Cross Country meets, and he shone at the Track & Field Grand Prix events.
Men’s Track and Field Gary Rushmer A regular throughout the summer, representing BA in all events from 100m to 3000m, as well as the Long Jump and Triple Jump.
Men’s Cross-Country Trophy Gary Rushmer Our captain led from the front in both 2013/14 and 2014/15 seasons with consistent performances.
Ladies Cross-Country Trophy Helen Smith For attendance and performances over the cross country season, narrowly pipping Monica Alonso at the post.
Most Improved Athlete Joe Nolan This year, our winner has achieved great improvements in his own performances, but he has also worked hard to improve other runners as well.  While many of us our now looking for age related PBs, he has managed significant lifetime bests over 5K, 10K, half marathon and twenty miles.
Female Athlete of the Year Janet Smith This year, a long list of age related club records have started to tumble, as a former member has returned to our ranks.  She has given us a successful presence in the ladies events at Rosenheim and Vets Track & Field competitions.  In addition, she has had time to put in strong performances in parkruns and road runs.
Male Athlete of the Year Paul Knechtl The leader in the Magic Mile, with a best time under five minutes, with the added incentive that he is the official timekeeper for all the other finishers!  He is frequently our first finisher over the grueling cross country events.  He commits himself to organising the club “Round the Park” and “Round the Block” each year.  He achieved at WARR, and pushes others to their best performances.
Veteran’s Trophy Eddie Giles Suffered a horrendous 2013, with a spectacular and serious injury leaving him sidelined for many months.  Instead of taking a back seat, he has continued to coach, encourage and lead the Track & Field team, while working his way back to fitness through parkruns and grueling training.  He returned to competition this summer, and has been collecting age related club records, while leading us once again to within a whisker of the Rosenheim final.

* It has been pointed out that Paul Knechtl also took part in the Ghost Busters dance - but I don't recall him doing the Irish jig and besides which he has shares in two trophies this year and is a past winner of the Alamo.

Akan Friar 70th birthday cakeBetter late than never Alan Friar got his 70th Birthday Cake during the awards evening. I've now been asked to get a photo ready for his 75th.

Roderick Hoffman

Berkhamstead Half and Five Mile "Fun" Run 1st March 2015 Results

On a cold but sunny Sunday morning many runners gathered for the annual Berkhamsted Half and 5 mile runs. Amongst those were about a dozen from BA and another dozen or so from Clapham Chasers, all who did their runs at varying speeds and then headed back to the Ruffell’s for a shower and some lunch. Bridget (Mrs R) and her mum, now 93, had spent all Saturday and all Sunday morning preparing food for 28, and on reflection this is more of a marathon than the mere half the runners were attempting. Everything came together and food was served at 13.30 and enjoyed by all. As well as a big thank you to the chef’s an extra thank you to those who were kind enough to bring along some deserts to ensure Barry was happy.

This year we decided to ask for £5 from each person to be donated to charity, hence proving there is no such thing as a free lunch.  We collected £110 and this has been distributed between 3 charities.

  • £50 has gone to The British Lung Foundation. Bridget's colleague Georgina who you those present on Sunday may have met is running her first (London) Marathon for this charity as her father has recently been diagnosed with an incurable lung condition. So this has been added to Georgina’s fund.
  • £15 is going to The Dog's Trust - we got Bonnie from them (and those present on Sunday will certainly have met her) and we like to support them when we can.
  • And finally £45 is going to White Lodge, the charity the BAAC support during the year.
Event GunPos Bib GunTime Forename Surname M/F Cat Club ChipPos ChipTime
Half 1 925 01:11:10 Paul Adams M 1st ST ALBANS STRIDERS 1 01:11:10
Half 12 604 01:21:58 Nadine Lewycky F 1st MARSHALL MILTON KEYNES AC 12 01:21:55
Half 138 960 01:36:55 Gary Rushmer M 50 BRITISH AIRWAYS 146 01:36:46
Half 233 1059 01:41:34 Graham Taylor M 55 BRITISH AIRWAYS 243 01:41:24
Half 417 668 01:49:11 Natalie Ruffell F CLAPHAM CHASERS 434 01:48:58
Half 441 263 01:49:49 Richard Ruffell M 50 BRITISH AIRWAYS 452 01:49:36
Half 510 1076 01:52:30 Stephen Taylor M 50 BRITISH AIRWAYS 522 01:52:05
Half 545 82 01:54:02 Lissa Pritchard F 35 BRITISH AIRWAYS 546 01:53:18
Half 628 379 01:57:35 Neil Frediani M 55 BRITISH AIRWAYS 646 01:57:24
Half 734 691 02:02:17 Roderick Hoffman M 50 BRITISH AIRWAYS 746 02:02:03
Event GunPos Bib GunTime Forename Surname M/F Cat Club ChipPos ChipTime
5Mile 1 2095 00:27:47 Ben Rochford M 1st   SHAFTSBURY BARNET HARRIERS 1 00:27:45
5Mile 14 2544 00:32:10 Wendy Walsh F 1st 40 ST ALBANS STRIDERS 14 00:32:09
5Mile 15 2044 00:32:38 Barry Walters M 55 BRITISH AIRWAYS 15 00:32:37
5Mile 364 2067 00:48:02 Monica Alonso F 45 BRITISH AIRWAYS 348 00:46:49
5Mile 483 2626 00:51:50 Helen Smith F 55 BRITISH AIRWAYS 473 00:50:34

Richard Ruffell

For those who have never done it the Berkhamstead Half is a tough event. With steep uphills at 3 and 7 miles and other undulations.  As an example my pace averaged 9:20 minute/miles but my slowest k was between 4 and 5K at 11:06m/m and my fastest was between 8 and 9 at 8:01m/m.

Roderick Hoffman

ASCA Cross Country, Iceland

There is a video on facebook of the start of the ASCA Cross Country in Iceland, hosted by Iceland Air. Daniela and Steve Hillier can be seen in the video starting off on a snow covered track but sadly there has been no news of either of them or other participants since.

Could anyone willing to help form a search party please put themselves forward.

Club parkrun results for Saturday 28th February 2015

parkrun position BAAC family member time agecat grade gend gend.pos club/comment total runs
Black Park 108 Joe NOLAN 24:46:00 VM55-59 64.20% M 100   211
Bushy 43 Colin HAYLOCK 19:30 VM45-49 72.74% M 42   55
Bushy 149 Ian CUNNINGHAM 22:08 VM50-54 67.70% M 135   186
Bushy 383 John COFFEY 24:58:00 VM70-74 73.50% M 332   170
Cassiobury 134 Richard RUFFELL 31:38:00 VM50-54 47.79% M 99 New BA parkrun 73
Cassiobury 135 Bridget RUFFELL 31:39:00 VW50-54 55.71% F 36 {Richard's partner} 3
Gunnersbury 50 Kerstin LUKSCH 21:50 SW30-34 68.24% F 5 parkrun PB 130
Gunnersbury 101 Oliver MATHAI 24:32:00 VM60-64 65.96% M 85   27
Gunnersbury 208 Marion J TAYLOR 29:53:00 VW50-54 56.78% F 56 {Steve Taylor partner} 30
Gunnersbury 214 Piers KEENLEYSIDE 30:05:00 VM55-59 51.97% M 155   92
Gunnersbury 219 Alan ANDERSON 30:15:00 VM75-79 67.88% M 157   353
Gunnersbury 232 Steve NEWELL 30:53:00 VM70-74 57.10% M 162   168
Gunpowder 55 Tony HIRD 26:02:00 VM50-54 56.66% M 46   90
Gunpowder 103 Tracy HIRD 33:13:00 VW50-54 50.48% F 35 {Tony's partner} 68
Northala Fields 87 Tony BARNWELL 29:55:00 VM70-74 60.45% M 64   71
Reading 8 Christopher T KELLY 20:54 VM45-49 70.02% M 8   229
South Oxhey 22 Roderick HOFFMAN 28:57:00 VM50-54 52.62% M 17 tourist parkrun #104 146
South Oxhey 36 Sarah GORDON 37:01:00 VW55-59 50.25% F 11 {Roderick's sister} 59
Upton Court 47 Sreeram SETHURAMAN 30:24:00 VM35-39 43.37% M 39   36
Woodley 99 Alice BANKS 25:13:00 VW55-59 73.76% F 16   19
Woodley 113 Alan FRIAR 25:58:00 VM70-74 67.91% M 92   154
parkrun Listed Volunteer
Guildford Alastair Heslop
Black Park Janet Smith
Gunnersbury Alan Anderson
Woking Monica ALONSO
Woking Tom Rowley

Club parkrun stats: (not updated this week)

Steve's away so apologies for anyone whose efforts have been missed.  Steve did manage to fit a run in before heading off for the airport and he also managed to drop me a quick line "A gentle drizzle drifted over Gunnersbury Park as almost 300 runners set off.  Kerstin Luksch continues her astonishing improvement dipping under 22 minutes for another PB.  Oliver Mathai seems to adopting Gunnersbury as his new park run of choice.  Marion Taylor beat Piers (nursing yet another injury ahead of a Sunday ultra run), Alan Anderson and Steve Newell".

Richard Ruffell and I were both running parkruns in Watford, though at different parkruns, Richard at the inaugural Cassiobury and Roderick catching up on the 5th running of South Oxhey.  Each of us were saving ourselves for the next day's Half Marathon and both were accompanied by family members though Richard did a better job of running with Bridget than Roderick did with his sister.  Bridget is thinking of running a parkrun perhaps every other week - why should Richard have all the fun!

Interesting news from Bushy parkrun - the established route is probably going to be changed from April because the park authorities are worried about the soil above the chestnut tree roots in the first k getting too compacted by the 1,000 runners each week.  More details including a map of the proposed new course:      

Roderick Hoffman

Brother for Elise Stather

Congratulations to Kat and John for their new arrival, Toby, born last Monday, 23rd February 2015. I'm sure that Kat put in most of the effort though I'm reliably informed that Monica was a great help at short notice.


"We are very pleased to offer your club members a £5 discount on the new 10 Mile Road Race that is coming to Brighton & Hove in 2015. The Bright10 sits one week before The Great South Run, and two weeks before The Cabbage Patch 10M, creating a 10 mile season in the South East. The unique discount code for your club is {contact me for the code:} {this event is on Sunday 18th October, the Sunday before the week of WARR}.

Your members should enter the code during registration to receive the discounted entry rate.

To help spread the word of this limited time offer we would greatly appreciate you forwarding this message onto your members.

Link to enter: ENTER NOW

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