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BA Athletics Club News Digest 7th September 2020

 For future weeks: inclusions, with photos, please to Roderick Hoffman at

Events Calendar

Week of Monday… Midweek Challenge Club Event Weekend Solo Run
31st August Bedfont Lakes parkrun (results below) Best weekend exercise achievement
7th September Solo Mile  Best weekend exercise achievement
14th September Equinox 5k (solo run) Wed 16th Sept: NOW WimbledonBest weekend exercise achievement
21st September Track-on-Field / Ross Barkley Fri 25th Victoria Dock (date tbc)Best weekend exercise achievement
28th September tbc 4th Oct: Virtual London Marathon 
5th October Solo Mile Shared mile (tbc) 
12th October   "Round-the-Park" (tbc, see below) 

Unrestricted races are still few and far between so the club continues to operate with Solo and Shared runs as listed above - for restrictions and advice see the Coronavirus footnote at the end of this digest. 

Roderick Hoffman

Bedfont Lakes runnersThis Week's Midweek Challenge - Bedfont Lakes Results

At the last-minute last week's digest introduced a Bedfont Lakes parkrun as a midweek challenge. This was due to the cancellation of the Speedbird Ladies race and because I had heard of two groups planning private runs at Bedfont the next day. Those two groups combined as shown in the photograph.

Others also managed to run at Bedfont during the week, including Maarten who jumped the gun by fitting his run in on the Monday! In total 14 of us ran Bedfont Lakes parkrun course last week (plus five other friends of Kelly) - not a bad turnout for a last-minute addition.

Breaking News

Hopefully, we'll soon be able to run Bedfont Lakes parkrun and at other regular parkruns on a Saturday morning. This is today's announcement from parkrun CEO Nick Pearson "Following detailed conversations with the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS), Sport England, and Public Health England, I am delighted to announce that we intend to reopen parkrun and junior parkrun events in England toward the end of October this year. " [Doesn't yet cover Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland].

Runner Date Time Comment
Maarten Stenham 31-Aug-20 00:36:26 5k PB for Francesca
Christine Munden 01-Sep-20 Made the mistake of following Stephen
Harjit Jhooti 01-Sep-20 00:31:21
Julie Barclay 01-Sep-20 00:22:27 One parkrun in one day (see below)
Kelly Davis 01-Sep-20 00:35:13 Went off a bit quick! Tired legs after all that cycling.
Paul Watt 01-Sep-20 00:21:57 One parkrun in one day (see below)
Roderick Hoffman 01-Sep-20 00:31:29 Slow to start - must remember to get the GPS signal before someone says "Go!"
Stephen Taylor 01-Sep-20 00:26:03 Creative in following the course
Maria Jovani 02-Sep-20 00:21:10 I didn’t plan to run fast but I met a regular parkrunner who was aiming for a sub 22. We pushed each other and smashed the target.
Scott Davison 02-Sep-20 00:25:43 Not a good idea to have coffee and cake in Staines an hour before!!
Benita Scaife 03-Sep-20 00:35:44 With John
Emma Moreton 03-Sep-20 00:23:04
John Scaife 03-Sep-20 00:35:44 Running a personal variant of the Bedfont course
Bob Bannister 05-Sep-20 00:21:59 On for a PB then tweaked hamstring with 200m to go.

Roderick Hoffman

This Week's Midweek Challenge - The Mile

Run one mile and send me your time. I'll then produce a fancy graph showing your time this month compared to those of other people and previous runs this year.

There isn't a shared run option this month. 

Participant Location Day Start Time Duration/Time  Comment

Surrey League XC – An Update on the 2020/21 Season

England Athletics is aiming to release COVID-19 compliant cross-country guidance for competition organisers week commencing 14th September.

In the meantime, organisers at Surrey League have been working hard to secure some racing for us this season. As well as awaiting EA guidance, another hurdle they face is that a number of the league’s regular venues are not granting permissions for XC events in 2020, including the Royal Parks.

The news is that unfortunately all races planned for 10th October are cancelled, both men’s and ladies. However the following fixtures remain on the calendar, with venues to be advised.

  • 7th November
  • 16th January
  • 13th February

I will provide another update when there is more information to share.

I would encourage any ladies who haven’t joined us for cross-country to contact me at so that we can build a big team for when we get back to competitive running!

Amanda Coombs

More Cross-Country

You will gather from the above that Amanda has agreed to step up to be our ladies captain, taking over from Clara who has run with the position for many years. Clara remains on the committee and keeps her club email address of She is now on the committee "without portfolio" but if we needed a captain for ultra-runs Clara's name would be first on the list.

To make up for a lack of cross-country races in October we propose to organise our own. This will be an internal club event (members and friends) and will probably be round our usual course in Cranford Park. We are considering the weekend of 17th/18th October to give our Virtual London Marathon runners a real break. This event will count as this year's "Round-the-Park" annual event, and thus be the CIE for October.

Roderick Hoffman

NOW Wimbledon Windmill wander reminder for 16th September

Non-Office Workers event next week - meet at the Windmill carpark for 12 noon.  Car parking charges are by donation using £1 or £2 coins.  A good excuse for those who have given up using old fashioned money to clear out their purses.  Suggestion is £1 per car per hour. Toilets are open, outdoor cafe is open.

Steve Newell

SOLO Activity Achievement Weekend 4th to 7th September 2020

This week 27 colleagues reported activities. For only the third time everyone's reported activities included running or walking.

Colleague Activity Distance Course Start Time Run Time Comments
Amanda Coombs Duathlon 25k/6k Indoor and local Sat 01:22:37 Final prep for next weekend’s Blenheim Palace Triathlon. Now to taper.
Andy Rayner Running 4miles XC Sun 00:50:10 Conditions good but ex cold so slower than Wednesday's 0:48:54
Barry Walters Running 10k Swinley Forest Sun am 00:49:30 Felt good so this became a tempo run and went through halfway in 25-50, covering the second half in 23-40.
Ben Cooper Running 3.79km BAMC (BA Maintenance Cardiff) Sat 00:17:45 Back at work this week. Also starting to wave goodbye to jumbos, we sent 1 to Kemble last week anther due this week.
Benita Scaife Running 7miles Windsor Great Park 01:14:10 Starting at Queen Anne’s Gate and finishing down the Long Walk to the back of the castle. Early signs of autumn along the way.
Chris Stockwell Walking 8miles Mendips Sat am 02:22:00 A circular route taking in 6 villages and a limestone quarry.
Clara Halket Running 17.38km Out in the woods Fri 02:07:20
David Duggan Running 15.09miles Worcester & Birmingham Canal Sun 04:16:24 Prep. For virtual London Marathon. Still tired from Wednesday's 20miler around Bushy Park in 4:40:51.
Denis Foxley Running 5k Harrow parkrun course Sat am 00:28:24 First time since parkrun stopped. It was a bit lonely doing the route without the motivation of keeping up with other runners.
Eddie Giles Treadmill 5k Ross Barclay 5k (Intermittent) Sun pm 00:25:00 5 x 1000m with 60 secs in between.
Emma Moreton Running 15.1miles Thames Path Sat am 02:21:00 Longest training run for virtual VLM so far. It was a lovely sunny morning and we saw runners from the Centurion Thames Path 100 race.
Harjit Jhooti Mixed Run/Walk 10k Dorney / Eton Sun 01:35:07 With Melanie Miller
Jacqui Musselwhite Running 5k Woking freedom parkrun Sat am 00:24:58 With Julie and Paul (again, see below)
Jain Reid Running 21.17km Merstham to Box Hill Sun 02:51:09 With "Wild Trail runners". Hilly half marathon on North Downs Way. Beautiful route.
Joe Nolan Running 5k Black Park freedom parkrun Sat 00:29:34 Just on my own this time, managing another 30s improvement from last week.
John Scaife Running 7miles Windsor Great Park 01:14:10 Starting at Queen Anne’s Gate and finishing down the Long Walk to the back of the castle. Early signs of autumn along the way.
Julie Barclay Running 5k Bedfont Lakes freedom parkrun midweek 00:22:27 Best freedom run time of the week
Kelly Davis Running 4.8k Weymouth Sat 00:32:30 Not the Weymouth half. Interrupted every 30 seconds by having to take a photo of something beautiful!
Melanie Miller Mixed Run/Walk 10k Dorney / Eton Sun 01:35:07 With Harjit Jhooti
Michael Ball Running 4.11miles Byfleet Sat am 00:37:43
Neil Frediani Running 9.5miles Penshaw monument and beach near Seaham Sat 01:52:28 Hilly and beautiful as always up here. With Poppy, who kept dropping her ball down steep slopes.
Paul Watt Running 5k Crane Park freedom parkrun Sun 00:21:17 Best freedom run time of the week
Petra Otto Running 10.8km Local 01:32:54 Plus 4 one hour gym sessions
Roderick Hoffman Walking 18k Capital Ring Sections 15 and 1 Sun 03:18:12
Simon Turton Running 11.31km Thames Valley Orienteers Street-O (Goring) Sat 00:58:34 Goring this week. Not as navigationally challenging as last week's Aldershot but much more picturesque (sorry Aldershot).
Stephen Taylor Running 15.03miles Ealing parks again Sat am 02:32:01 Just 15 miles this time with the last long run for VLM schedule for next weekend.
Steve Newell Running 5k Gunnersbury Park freedom parkrun Sat am 00:47:20 Using the "celebration" course last used for the 400th parkrun in August 2019.  Start/finish at the highest point near the old car park.  Avoids the busy areas and of course means the last mile is uphill!

Please submit your best exercise achievement of next weekend by filling in the following form and sending it to me OR replying to the message on Facebook (or any other messaging format to me):

Your Name Event Distance Location Day/Start Time or Duration Details or comment, and other achievements
e.g. Running  

Roderick Hoffman {submit by 5pm on Monday}

Banstead Woods freedom parkrun runnersMultiple Freedom Runs

One freedom parkrun this week hasn't been enough for Julie and Paul, enjoying their freedom from the working week. I also joined them on Thursday at Banstead Woods for a run around that course (pictured) and they had run at Brooklands the previous day. Since then they have been to various other parkrun courses (for example with Jacqui at Woking on Saturday) and hope to complete their tenth in ten days this Thursday.

Triathlon News

The International Triathlon Union World series for 2020 which usually includes a race in and around Leeds was reduced to a single sprint distance (half x Olympic) race in Hamburg this year held on 5th September.  We all know why!  Lucky to get any race at all.

Georgia Taylor-Brown (GBR) triumphed in the women's event and is the new world champion.  She finished 9 seconds ahead of former champion Flora Duffy (Bermuda).  They were two of just a handful of triathletes who were able to produce a sub 17 minute 5km run to follow the 750m swim and 20km bike ride.

Strong running proved essential in the men's race as well.  Two time Olympic champion Alistair Brownlee was leading after the swim and was part of a leading breakaway bunch on the bike ride but could finish only 9th.  Alex Yee (GBR, age 22) emerged from the main pack on the bike and produced the fastest 5km run of the day (14:24) to finish in 5th place only 11 seconds behind the winner, Vincent Luis of France.  The first 15 of the 65 men racing completed their 5km run leg in under 15 minutes.  Some readers may have come across Alex Yee, he has been first home in Surrey League XC fixtures in recent seasons and has done 13:26 for 5000m on the track this year.

The Tokyo 2021 Olympic program will include a mixed team relay for the first time. In Hamburg Georgia Taylor Brown and Alex Yee were joined by Barclay Izzard and Jessica Learmonth.  Each competitor completes a mini triathlon (300m swim, 6.3km bike and 1.7km run) in about 20 minutes before handing over to the next teammate (female-male-female-male).  Podium positions: France (1h 18:25), USA (1:18:33), Great Britain (1:18:59).  For the technical - the water temperature was 17.6 deg. C and wetsuits were allowed.

Steve Newell

South London Street-O - in September at Kings Cross

The traditional series of South London Street-O starts again this month. The first event of the 2020-21 series is a free virtual event, using the MapRun app we have been using recently. The location is Kings Cross and you have until the end of September to do this run. For details and the map see: .

Coronavirus Warning Footnote [changes from last week underlined or struck-through] (no changes)

In the UK exercise outside is permitted because it will boost physical and mental health and because the risk of catching Coronavirus outdoors is very low provided social distancing advice is kept to. The relevant law in England says that people can meet in groups of up to 30:

  • Do not exercise outside the house if you are unwell, particularly if you have symptoms of the coronavirus such as a fever, or if you share a house with someone who has these symptoms, or if you consider yourself to be vulnerable, such as being elderly or with pre-existing health conditions,
  • You may drive to outdoor publicly accessible open spaces irrespective of distance, but you should follow social distancing guidance whilst you are there. Advice is still to avoid public transport and shared car journeys,
  • In England you may meet with up to five other persons for your exercise outside the home, and in some situations up to 30. Club organised events can include more. Do not share athletics equipment and continue to maintain the social distancing with anyone you do meet up with. You are recommended to minimise the total number of different people you meet with over the days and weeks,
  • As you exercise, keep 2m away from all others including those you run with as well as those you meet on the run, by default diverting around those you meet (don't leave it up to them to avoid you),
  • Do not push yourself too far, this may weaken your defences against the virus and/or increase the probability of requiring assistance. We all have different limits so you need to judge what would be too far for you,
  • If government instructions are updated to limit or prevent exercising outside your homes, or to meet with fewer people, please respect such instructions - we should be fighting the virus, not authority.

If you are unwell yourself, especially if you have symptoms of the virus:

  • Put your needs first...
  • but please let me (Roderick Hoffman) or Steve Hillier know of your condition/status, but we will keep it to ourselves unless you ask us to pass information on.

For the club shared activities we recommend the social distancing gap of 2metres although "1meter+" can be followed during the run itself. Any member can organise a shared activity by following the England Athletics guidance, filling in the risk assessment form and notifying myself or Steve Hillier that you have done so in advance of the event.

Next Digest - Results, news, pictures, feedback, jokes, stories - send them to the editor, Roderick Hoffman, at

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