The logo of the baRUNNER website. HOME NEWS DIARY

baRUNNER - a website for the British Airways Athletics Club

The logo of the baRUNNER website.

BA Athletics Club News Digest 17th December 2012

This News Digest

This is being sent to you because you are on the BA Athletics Club email list.  If you wish to be removed please email us at Do you know someone who might appreciate being on the mailing list?  They don't need to be a member.  Let us know.

Difficulty viewing this email? Read it off the website instead - Latest.shtml.

Forthcoming Events

Don't forget the following priority club events:

  • THIS WEDNESDAY 19th December - 'Parkway Mile' from 18:00 followed by the Club Christmas Social (see below).
  • Saturday 12th January 2013 - BA hosted Men's Surrey League Cross Country at Cranford Park - revised start times below.
  • Wednesday 30th January - 5 Mile Handicap Concorde Centre from 18:00

New members and non-members of all fitness levels and abilities are welcome at all of these events.

The full events diary is on the club website at: Diary.shtml.

Your (cross) Country needs you...

Dear BAAC members,

The British Airways Athletics Club is hosting the next Men's Surrey Cross Country League Divisions 3 & 4 on Saturday 12th January 2013 at Cranford Park.  We need 10 to 12 volunteers to help us marshal the course and record the finishers. The first race is the Youths and Boys which starts at 2.00pm and then the Seniors and Juniors at 2.30pm.  It is important to the club that this event goes well so please spare us the time if you can.  We'd also like to be able to spare some of our better runners to score in the event!

If you could help please contact or myself .

Gary Rushmer

Parkway Mile (Relay) Wednesday 19th December 2012 from 18:00 followed by club social with Santa's Sack and Mince Pies

Parkway Mile

We get a much better event if runners enter in advance with an estimate of their mile time. Teams can be chosen to make a close race more likely.

Please enter via email to  by midnight on Tuesday 18th December.

Late entries will be accepted but those who leave it to the last minute are more likely to have to run twice!

Steve Newell

Christmas Social from 19:30

There will be mince pies and Santa's sack. Please bring a wrapped present to the value of about £3 - if you put one in then you can take one out.  Also during the evening there is likely to be cake since there will be at least two club member significant birthdays to celebrate!

Brian Forrester

Editors Note - the Parkway Mile is optional, the Santa's Sack is optional, even the mince pies are optional* but to see you would make it a wonderful Christmas Social.

* But Brian will be upset if any mince pies remain uneaten!

BAAC 5M handicap results 12 Dec 2012

For those running for the first time a brief explanation. There are a series of 6 (October through March) 5 mile runs, usually (there are exceptions) the last Wednesday of the month starting between 18;00 and 19:00, aiming to finish at 19:00. Points are awarded depending upon how close to your handicap time you get. The points are totalled up after 6 runs and the highest total gets a small prize. (So far we do not ask runners not to wear watches etc). Handicap times are set based upon previous handicap run time when available or an estimate from the runner when not.

12 December 2012. On a cold December evening 16 runners, including three 5m HC first timers, gathered outside the pavilion at the Concorde centre for the 3rd of this season's winter handicap series. Most runners wore a combination of hats, gloves, and layers to keep out the cold, temperatures just below freezing, though we did have 1 runner wearing shorts!

Typically after the first run or two of the season most runners are not too far away from their handicap time which makes recording finish times 'interesting' when finishers turn up en masse, only 3 of the 16 were more than 1 minute different from there handicap time. This month we had 2 'pairs' where the 2 runners started together and finished together, there was another instance where 2 runners finished together and in all 3 cases the pair were awarded the same finish time and handicap points even though there may have been half a step between them.

Paul Brandon

12-Dec-12   Handicap run time Time gap from handicap Points this month Total points Next Handicap
Steve Hillier 47:00 49:25 02:25 2 2 49:30
Steve Newell 49:00 48:56 00:04 16 32 49:00
Roderick Hoffman 45:00 46:08 01:08 3 11 46:00
Alan Anderson 44:30 43:55 00:35 7 10 44:00
Joe Nolan 43:00 43:31 00:31 10 10 43:30
Steve Waite 43:00 43:31 00:31 10 10 43:30
Piers Keenleyside 37:00 42:08 05:08 1 1 42:00
Eddie Giles 38:00 38:05 00:05 14 30 38:00
Graham Taylor 34:00 33:56 00:04 15 26 34:00
Matthew Stratful 33:30 33:07 00:23 12 12 33:00
Richard Ruffell 33:30 32:58 00:32 9 26 33:00
Simon Turton 33:30 32:46 00:44 6 22 33:00
Gary Rushmer 33:00 32:25 00:35 7 17 32:30
Barry Walters 31:30 31:23 00:07 13 21 31:30
Chris Kelly 31:30 30:40 00:50 4 15 30:30
Jeremy Short 31:30 30:40 00:50 4 4 30:30

In addition to adding the December results, I've also created a summary spreadsheet, which contains the run times for all of the 5M handicaps run so far from Oct 2009. Times only.  full results and history summary

Ed - I've added a Stats section to the summary which shows that, of the runners who have done at least 5 runs over the years, the most consistent has been Simon Turton with a Standard Deviation of just 22 seconds in 12 races (if you want an explanation of Standard Deviation then ask Trevor Plows).  Nick Edge is next best with 27 seconds.  The least consistent, with a standard deviation of 3 minutes and 26 seconds, is Alan Anderson - I had been worried that it might have been me.  Note that this consistency analysis is NOT the mechanism by which the season series is judged.

See you in January for run number 4. (Wed 30th, same time, same place).

Paul Brandon

KLM Road Runners Club Championships Saturday 15th December - Result

The KLM Road Runners Club Championships are a regular event held every December with short (6k) and long (10k) races at the beach near Amsterdam and a big party afterwards. It is one of perhaps just two events over the year where the KLM runners gather together and consequently the turn out is high with around one hundred local runners.

They also freely invite runners from other airlines to join them.  This year I participated for BA and turned up at Schiphol airport at the designated hour.  I may have been the only BA runner but I was not alone since the foreign participants included sizable teams from Lufthansa (including Paul and Ralph), Air France, El Al and Aeromexico and familiar faces from American Airlines (Lisa) and Alaskan (Steve). Fortunately KLM Road Runners had laid on a coach for us (entirely at their expense - the event was free to enter).  We got to the bar at the beach with enough time for a stiff whisky to change and warm-up. 

Despite being a "Road Runners" club the Championship races don't feature any road surfaces.  The "Outbound" section (0 to 3k and 6 to 8k) are on a rough path over sand dunes - firm in places but soft sand in others and very undulating and winding.  The rest of the course is back along the beach - long and straight but over slightly soft sand and, this year, with a gale force North Sea wind into your face all the way!  I started the 10k race but quickly realised that I had taken on more than I could do so I ended up finishing the 6k. That gave me a very good position in the results - 49:57 for "10k" but I have suggested that they correct it.

After the races there were the presentations and a free raffle (how did they know that my bottle of shower gel had just run out?  I now have a "KLM Road Runners" branded bottle).

There was then a buffet dinner but I ducked out at that point and got the coach back to the airport.  A busy day but a most enjoyable one despite the course.  I will be trying to get more of the airline employees in this club out to the event next year.

Thank you to Frank Jegers, Kitty Meijburg, Chris Visscher, Peter van der Veldt, Cornelis van der Pol, Wim Verhage, Peter Groot, Jolanda Lucassen, Klaas Bruin and all the others at the KLM Road Runners.

Photos - me, almost running, and a WARR Friend's Reunion.

Roderick Hoffman

Parkrun Correction

The parkrun statistics are held at this link - the one sent last week didn't work from the email digest.  Note that in future if such problems occur then the links will normally work correctly from the website version of the digest.

Don't be lonely this a Christmas period parkrun

This list shows Christmas period parkruns including Saturday "Santa" Runs where you can expect lots of runners to be dressed as Father Christmas and special runs on each of Christmas Day and New Year Day.  Although Bushy Park is not (yet) listed as having a Christmas Day run it is expected that there will be one and all BAAC runners are invited to turn up for it (but check this list before setting off - if only to get the start time confirmed).  Richmond could be a nearby alternative. 

On New Years Day at least two of us have resolved to be at Dulwich parkrun with a 10am start.  If you think that that getting up on New Years Day will be too much of a challenge for you then just consider that I'm planning to do this despite being in Sydney on New Years Eve. 

Then the following week please reserve January 5th for a big parkrun event - to make up for not being able to do one on January 12th because of the BA Cross Country event. Details to follow.

Roderick Hoffman

A Safety Tip to reflect on...

Make sure you're visible at night. You wouldn’t have realised how invisible white can be. Fluorescent is almost as bad as white. Reflectives is where it's at - reflectives are vital. See: for a demonstration.

Joe Nolan

My 10k Adventures – Joe Nolan

Well, Rod has asked me to put together a few notes for the news digest about my ‘10k achievements’, of my most memorable 10ks and maybe some statistics from these runs.

I only started running in 2001 at the age of 46, as the result of having my name put down for the ‘British 10k’ race in London by some friends(?) after too many beers at the local pub ! Prior to that I neither had any interest or ability to run, and the subsequent training for that first event involved more time at the physio with injuries rather than running. I managed exactly 1 hour for that first race, and I can’t explain it but I got the bug immediately and went forth looking for more challenges, with a great sense of achievement in completing different courses and trying to improve my times.

Apart from ‘hearing about marathons’ I only really knew about 10k’s and it wasn’t until I joined BAAC in about 2005 that I discovered there were other distances !!! Nevertheless, I have continued to concentrate on the 10k’s and have proudly been awarded the annual ‘Brian Forrester 10k Plate’ on 3 occasions since then. Of course, 2 years ago I suddenly had the ‘inner calling’ to try a marathon and have now completed 4 of these with 2 more planned for 2013 which is another story…….

To date I have now completed approx 160 10k’s, with the most in any one year being 24, and a busiest sequence of 6 in just 9 days !

My favourite ones each year are the Yateley series of three every summer, on Wednesday evenings. These are so well organised and have up to 1000 runners per event, with many club runners and a tremendous atmosphere. It’s a tough undulating course but when you know it quick times can be achieved. I remember one of my earlier ones that I tripped over after about 200m and was ‘trampled’ by most of the field before getting up rather bruised and cut, and in the end managing a new PB by about 20s ! On another I arrived a bit late and hearing the starting horn scaled two fences and ran about 500m diagonally to intercept and join the charging pack. I got to know the organisers and was given the running number ‘1’ for three years running which became a bit embarrassing when you are trailing way back in the field, but always ask for a high number now !

Another top one for me is the annual Silverstone 10k, which has special meaning to me as I raced cars for many years back in my 20’s completing many races alongside the likes of Ayrton Senna and Nigel Mansell around this circuit. When I puff my way to the very first corner I reminisce the days when I would have completed a whole lap by this time already ! Naturally I ‘ride the kerbs, cutting the corners’ as I run, and setting some of my PB’s along the way there !

One of the most shambolic races I have done was one of the first organised by ‘Human Race’ called the Richmond 10k a few years ago – a muddled start, insufficient and inexperienced marshals who managed to direct traffic across the runners at every junction, course direction confusion, inadequate water stop manned by 1 elderly lady, and a finish with collecting pen behind that became congested with only about a dozen runners resulting in a 50m walking queue to get over the line, and to crown it all they hadn’t got the timing working so there were no results either – hmmmm !

Last year I managed my PB to date with a 47m25s at Brighton, it’s a scenic location but I have reservations about some of the chaotic event organisation, but despite that it seems a quick course and attracts about 2500 runners every time.

I haven’t counted up my tally of 2012 10k’s yet but am guessing these to amount to only about twelve due to an injury riddled summer. It continues to be my favourite distance but nowadays I seem to be also plodding plenty of 5k’s, 10 milers, half and full marathons !

Joe Nolan

News for the next BAAC News Digest? Thank you to Joe and the regulars for their input this time - next week could it be you?

Please let us have your ideas for how club communications can be improved and please send us items for inclusion in the next Digest.  Results, news, feedback, jokes, stores - send it to us at,uk.

Club website:



Full Index