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BA Athletics Club News Digest 4th May 2015


  • Wednesday 6th May - Speedbird Ladies 5k - Harmondsworth Moor 19:00 (see below)
  • Thursday 7th May - Magic Mile - Bath Road from 12:45
  • Monday 11th May - Track&Field - London Veterans League, Battersea from 18:30

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.

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

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Speedbird Ladies Reminder

Wednesday is the day of this year's Speedbird Ladies race with a start time of 7pm.  We want a good turn out so could all ladies try to make this event.  It is 5k distance on the paths around the parklands next to Waterside, and encourage others to do so also.  Our male club members are welcome to help on the day and in addition you are welcome to "inspect the course" at 6pm (self-timed). Meet in the usual car park off Accommodation Lane, near to the Community Centre.

London Marathon Runners Story

"I know that I have not done the training I wanted, but it’s too late now to worry about it.  I am going to go on Sunday and enjoy the day whatever happens (Louise Goodridge 6:23).  Once we started I mentally told myself that I was prepared, fit and disciplined and just had to stick to the plan (Paul Timms 3:33). The first half was really just enjoying the brilliant atmosphere, sites and having the odd chat with myself and when I got bored chatting with other runners (Colin Haylock 3:26).  At half way I managed to catch a glimpse of the leaders going the other way, which stirred me on to concentrate more (Graham Taylor 3:37). I passed loads of people during the last 3 miles and can only remember one go past me (Neil Frediani 4:42). The last mile was my favourite by far! I could have ran that 26 times over easily! (Hannah Davison 4:55). I have to say it was one of my most enjoyable marathons as it was so relaxed (Scott Davison 4:07). Crossing that finish line and receiving my first marathon medal is a day I will never forget (Tamarind Higham 4:08).  As a boy I watched my Dad run 3 London's and I always fancied giving it a go. ... as I trained I thought I had a sub four in me....So to tick both those boxes, with my Dad supporting me, made for a VERY special day and we raised over £5000 between the 2 of us (Robbie Stewart 3:59:53).  Congratulations everyone who took part in whatever way, and errrr.... see you next year-?! (Jenny Reeves 4:00)."

The full stories from these club participants are on the website:

If you want to enter next year's event the ballet is open but closes at 17:00 this Friday 8th May: .  Note that club places may be available for next year's event but in allocating these we take into account whether applicants had applied through the normal ballet.

Results corrections

I'm reliably informed that Mark Turner did finish having run every inch of the way with partner Kimberley but for some reason hadn't registered on the system from 30k onwards.  So his time was also about 3:51:23.  Also Tracey was surprised to see her time in the results since she had dropped out before race day and was marshalling throughout - it was another Tracey Mills. 

Roderick Hoffman

Cranford Park Consultation

A reminder about the Public Consultation going on about Cranford Park.  There is still time to submit a response.  I've made a personal response in which I've encouraged them to consider making the park parkrun friendly. You might want to respond the same way or to other aspects of the plan - for instance it isn't obvious that the existing cross country circuit will remain available.  The consultation is here and there is an online feedback form (or you can print off, fill in and post back a questionnaire.

Roderick Hoffman

Club parkrun results for Saturday 2nd May 2015

2nd May 2015 Family & Friends Time parkrun Comment Grade Tourism
Roderick Hoffman 26:46 Luton Wardown BApark #166, UKpark #99 57% 111
Steve Newell 30:53 Cassiobury park #58 58% 58
Richard Ruffell 23:17 Gadebridge BApark #165, park #38 65% 38
Sarah Gordon 41:07 Queen Elizabeth 45% 36
Chris Kelly 20:10 Wilmslow BApark #163, 4th out of 164 73% 22
Ian Cunningham 21:47 Gorleston Cliffs BApark #164 69% 15
Alan Anderson 29:31 Gunnersbury run #361 70% 12
Piers Keenleyside 21:48 Northala Fields hill training for afters! 72% 12
Benita Scaife 30:05 Fell Foot 60% 11
John Scaife 30:06 Fell Foot BApark #167 54% 11
Tony Barnwell 31:29 Wycombe Rye 57% 8
Alice Banks 25:31 Maidenhead run #26 73% 7
Matt Gardner 24:15 Netley Abbey (LGW) potential member 57% 7
Marion Taylor 29:55 Northala Fields run #32 57% 7
Ben Chaytow 21:36 Crane Park 62% 6
John Coffey 25:07 Guildford course pb 73% 5
Sreeram Sethuraman 26:13 Upton Court run #44, parkrun pb 50% 4
Justine Arnott 28:00 Strathclyde CP BApark #168 53% 3
Scott Davison 22:52 Bushy Park course pb 61% 3
Kerstin Luksch 21:41 Gunnersbury pb, MK marathon on Monday 69% 3
Bridget Ruffell 28:45 St Albans parkrun pb 61% 3
Oliver Mathai 24:23 Gunnersbury run #30 66% 2
Alice Banks volunteer Maidenhead pre-event setup
Joe Nolan volunteer Black Park volunteer co-ordinator
Steve Taylor volunteer Northala Fields Lead Bike

A quite exceptional day for the club's tourists with six new parks visited this Saturday. Assuming all runs started on time (09:00 in England, 09:30 in Scotland) our tourist runners reached the finish lines in this order -

  • Chris Kelly at Wilmslow in 20:10  (park #163).  This is quite a new parkrun in only its fourth week and Chris finished 4th.
  • Ian Cunningham at Gorleston Cliffs (21:47) (park #164).  Gorleston Cliffs parkrun is near Great Yarmouth and has been going for over six years.
  • Richard Ruffell attended the inaugural run at Gadebridge (Hemel Hempstead) and finished in 23:17 (park #165).  Yet another parkrun for Richard in his home county of Hertfordshire.
  • Roderick Hoffman at the recently started Luton Wardown (which includes a climb taken four times in three laps!) in 26:46 (park #166).  He looks forward to the day they offer a run in the reverse direction!  Roderick adds - I'll probably have finished after the Scaifes because the briefing at Luton is given at the finish whereupon we all walk 600m to the start - consequently this parkrun will always start five or more minutes late.
  • John and Benita Scaife were at Fell Foot (by Windermere) and ran together in 30:05 (park #167). John adds - Benita and I ran the Fell Foot parkrun at Newby Bridge yesterday. Two lap figure of eight-shaped course through the park and adjacent meadow overlooking Lake Windermere. The word scenic is often a euphemism for undulating/hilly, and this was no exception. The field of 164 was significantly above the event average, due to a large contingent of Bank Holiday weekend visitors to the Lakes.
  • Up in Scotland at Strathclyde Country Park (near Motherwell and Hamilton Academicals) Justine Arnott emerged from four years of hibernation reaching the finish line of the picturesque flat course in 28:00, (park #168). A barcode is forever, I just hope she is in touch with our membership secretary!

Steve Taylor relaxed after his London Marathon triumph (sub 4h) and volunteered for lead bike duty at Northala Fields while his wife Marion ran the course in under 30 minutes.  Course pbs this week for John Coffey at Guildford (25:07), Bridget Ruffell at St Albans (28:45) (bettering her previous best from 2010), Scott Davison at Bushy (22:52), Sreeram Sethuraman at Upton Court (26:13) and Alan Anderson's protégé at Gunnersbury, Kerstin Luksch (21:41).  Kerstin is tackling the Milton Keynes Marathon on bank holiday Monday so she will not be short of pace.

Steve Newell continued his tour of parkruns inside the M25 reachable on public transport and visited Cassiobury Park, very conveniently served by the Metropolitan Line to Watford station.  He was unaware while on the course that he was being chased by uber parkrun tourist Chris Cowell who was on his way to his 145th different UK parkrun finish, running without his wife for once and therefore faster than usual (just an observation).
There were record turnouts this week at Gunnersbury (357 including Alan Anderson as usual) and Wycombe Rye (284 including Tony Barnwell back after a break of a few weeks).

Updated club parkrun stats: 

Steve Newell

Wings for Life World Run results

The biggest simultaneous running event over the weekend wasn't parkrun.  It was the Wings for Life World Run with 68,791 competitors running simultaneously at 35 venues around the world - so some in the middle of the night.  Running the Silverstone leg, with the comfortable start time of midday but the rolling hills north of Silverstone to contend with, I finished in 20,598th place (434th at Silverstone) covering a distance of 18.30Km/11.37miles. My time was about 1:42:04 so that represents an average speed of 5:35 minutes per Km/8:59 minutes per mile. I'm pleased because I ran over a kilometer, or 6%, further than last year.

But what of others?  I'm not aware of anyone else known to the club running this event.  I don't know why - it has great organisation as well as the novelty value of you not knowing how far you are going to run or for how long - it is expensive to enter, £40, but 100% of that goes to research into finding a cure for Spinal Injuries (the estimate for this year is €4.2 million raised).  Anyone capable of running over 10k ought to put this in their calendar for next year - Sunday 8th May 2016.

 In the provisional results there were 1,199 finishers at Silverstone although a few more may have missed the scanners at start or finish.  Some didn't get very far at all - but that included some disabled competitors for whom getting to the start line marks a major victory. 13 were caught by the cacher car within 5k (it starts 30 minutes after the runners and starts very slowly). Over 1,000 ran further than 10k, 336 greater than 20k, 57 30k, just 3 ran more than the marathon distance and the winner ran all of 61.09Km.  But in Austria the overall winner achieved 79.9Km and in Japan (running overnight) the winning lady did 56.33km.

Find out more:

Roderick Hoffman

Running Shorts

Can you guess who it is?

The weekly parkrun newsletter included a parkrunners "feedback from the field" last week, with reference to the London Marathon and a mystery helper.  I think we can all work out who the mystery man was...

"I run at Bromley parkrun and completed my second London Marathon last Sunday. I had a great 18 miles and then a shin injury flared up and I had to walk the rest. I was joined by an incredible marshall for the last 2k which took me an agonising hour. He kept me talking and told me he was a keen parkrunner. He said he had run 360 and was a regular at Gunnersbury. He was so patient as I snailed along and it was great to find that we were both huge parkrun fans. I could not have got to the finish without him. Please pass on my thanks. He is my hero and a true parkrun legend." Debbie Hoods

North Dorset Villages marathon 3 May 2015

To help restore my confidence after throwing the towel in halfway recently in Vienna I ventured down to the North Dorset Villages marathon yesterday which was the toughest course I have ever run (/walked !)   Nothing had prepared me for the relentless hill after hill (and no flats), not helped by bucketing rain at the start which turned to scorching sunshine, nor strong headwinds in the later stages and a loose and stony off-road last few miles …but I got there intact and very happy with 4h34m13s considering !

Fantastic organisation, regular water/orange/coke/food stops, great support from all the villages, very scenic, good t-shirt, free hog roast/beer, but only downer was a crummy medal !!!

Joe Nolan

and from our Rowling reporter...

Julie Barclay ran the Multi-Terain Richmond 1/2 of one large lap that includes combined sections of the Cabbage Patch 10 and the Richmond 10k.  Seems a popular event but not favourable for spectators and the start/finish area being one mile apart.   Julie, having ran two good 1/2 Mara. during March, is easing down now to concentrate on track running.  Today aiming to run 1.40.00 and was on target up up to 10m but the last 3 felt tough and she finished 212th out of over 700 in a time of 1.41.41 but not to disappointed knowing her mileage has halved.

On Thursday the 30th April three BA members tackled the tough Runnymede 5mile H/C from Seville Gardens John Coffey very pleased with a small improved time of 40.47  from last year; Paul Goldsmith having a rare outing but still looking fit having cycled there and home ran 47.52 Neil Frediani giving his legs a little outing after his London run 4 days ago.  I saw them all finish and have photo's to prove it but Neil's time was not on the results.  He's unable to ask for his money back as it the event was FREE.

Well done lads,

Hope to see you all Wed. at the Speedbirds 5k

Tom Rowley

I bumped into Dave Raeside at Madrid airport recently.  He is doing well and sends best wishes to all who remember him.

Alastair Heslop

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