BA Athletics Club News Digest 19th April 2021
For future weeks: inclusions, with photos, please to Roderick Hoffman at firstname.lastname@example.org.
For Coronavirus related restrictions and advice see News_Coronavirus_Guidance_April_2021.shtml
Club Event Map:
[Clickable link to Google Maps]
This Week's and Future Solo Events
Please help me by sending in your results, for instance by filling in the tables below and
News@barunner.org.uk. Some events, such as the
weekend achievement, will have "Prompts" set up in
These allow the posting of a single image and some text and make it easy to flip
through everyone's entries.
Track-on-Field (by 5pm on Monday 26th April, to be reported on that evening):
Weekend Achievement (by 5pm on the Monday) or use the Facebook prompt that
will be added on Friday:
||Time or Duration
||Details or comment, and other achievements
Monthly Solo Challenge
The Street-Sentence Challenge is also continuing until the end of next weekend.
See last week's digest or read the full instructions at: Event_Street_Sentence.shtml.
Results to > Roderick
In-Person Events - please register in advance.
Please provide suggestions and offer to organise.
There are two in-person events this week, on
Wednesday and Thursday lunchtimes. See the diary for details. And then there will be two
next week also - the Five Mile Handicap on Wednesday 28th April and the
BA Cross Country Championships announced below for 2nd May.
For Wednesday's Cooper Test at the Kings College Track Steve Newell is
planning on getting there early and measuring and marking the non-standard
track. He'll also be overseeing the running using a whistle to alert us to the
start and end of the 12 minutes.
Please register your interest for these in-person events even if you are only
a possible. Either by email or using the "Signup" option on the diary entry
> Roderick Hoffman (register interest)
. Future In-Person events will be added to the diary as organisers put
Years Strong - The British Airways Athletics Club
The British Airways Athletics Club was founded in April 1981 and
therefore is 40 years strong this month! Allan Hardy wrote an article
in issue 58 (February 2001) of Round-the-Block from which I've sourced
some information in this issue of the digest.
I don't have a list of the club's founder members but current
members who were active at the formation date include Harry
Wild, David Barnard, Alan Friar, John Williams and youngster Barry
Walters. The club was founded around keen runners many of whom were
already members of their local running clubs. That was why traditionally
the BAAC's activities have been done on Wednesday and Monday evenings,
local clubs traditionally meeting on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Perhaps
the first race entered after the club's formation was the Battersea Park
5 with finishers including Barry Walters (2nd overall in 25:21, on a
slightly long five mile course) and Harry Wild (31:06). Checking below
it is good to see that Barry is still doing about the same time for 5',
though he has gone metric over the years.
The club will organise an event to celebrate our 40th anniversary.
This will be when we can hold the event with unconstrained numbers,
under a roof and with a bar! Expect this to be sometime in the autumn.
1 John Williams
"40 years ago this month. It’s hard to believe. Half my life,
give or take a day or two. The memories remain vivid .... London
Marathons, Hood to Coasts, WARRs, to name but a few. Memories too
of fellow club members through the years, all good friends and serious
competitors. And memories too of the hard work put in by Committee
members and volunteers. Those 40 years would not have been the
same without ‘the Club’.
John W. (Club
BAAC Cross Country Championships - Sunday 2nd May Crane Park
news! We have been given permission to stage the annual BA Cross Country
race next month in scenic Cranford Park. You are very welcome to take part
in this traditional feature of the BAAC Spring calendar. The course
involves two very flat laps of the park for ladies (just over 3 miles) and three
laps for men (almost 5 miles). Keen lady runners are welcome to complete
the third lap!
The Sunday morning start time will be 10:30.
Please be aware that we have to abide by a number of COVID regulations, and
all participants should register in advance to be able to take part - runners,
volunteers and spectators. The race is open to a maximum number of club
members and friends, but we are unlikely to approach that number so please join
Please run if you can, but we would also welcome volunteers to help with the
smooth running of the event. If you can help, please contact me.
SOLO Activity Achievements, Weekend 16th to 19th April 2021
This week 24 results are listed for members and friends.
||To Kempton Park racecourse
||Outbound for my Street Sentence entry. Then ran home.
||Also on Thursday - quicker at 48:50.
|| Time trial. Started well and got into a good pace reaching
halfway in 26:15. Kept attacking on the second half which was
more uphill and completed in 25:28.
||During which I set PB for flying km (3.58) and flying mile
(6.29) so very happy indeed.
||Flackwell Heath via Cookham and Bourne End.
||We were both feeling a bit sluggish and sorely tempted to
call it a day outside Bourne End Costa but battled up Blind Lane
to the finish.
||Sunny Saturday afternoon
||Taking in horse tracks, Lido and Haste Hill.
||Isle of Wight
||With Kay, Julie and Paul and Tom as timekeeper. Also ran in
Devon this week, Tarka Trail from Bideford (pictured). Wonderful
to get to the coast at last!
||Richmond Park and back
||What a fabulous day for being outside. Over MAF HR but I was
||All in the woods and horse tracks – and, for a change, felt
||Flackwell Heath via Cookham and Bourne End.
||Also last week a long walk with the BA mountain walking &
trekking group in the Surrey Hills (pictured).
||Officially timed race - fastest in over a year & 83.12% age
||St Albans area
||Also cycling on Sunday - 41.8km in 1:33.
||New Milton Junior parkrun
||We've been away all week near the New Forest walking miles,
Chloe still managed to sprint parts of New Milton junior parkrun,
leaving me behind a couple of times. We did finish together
||Brush, Whiteleaf & Coombe Hill
||Doing 3 super hills in the heat in The Chilterns was tuff...lol...almost
13 miles 565m of hiking but the views more than made up for it!
||Early morning sprint work
||Sunbury & Bushy Park
||To Walton Bridge, avoiding roads, then over the river and on
the towpath to Hampton Court, finishing through Bushy Park. It
was really nice for running, and a pretty quiet route too.
||Officially timed race - lifetime PB
||Celandine Path, from Pinner
||From Pinner to West Drayton mostly along the river Pinn.
[Ed: And downhill all the way!]
||Fastest non-"Ross Barkley" 5k since July. Also 9.5km Henley
Street-O on Friday (pictured).
||Thames to Maidenhead
||Taking in Bray & Monkey Island. Including looking at
the additional steel work put in to support the M4 road widening
over the Thames (it’s the engineer in me). Lovely morning.
||Richmond and back
||I completely ran out of "go" in my legs at 12 miles having
spent the previous three days building a shed.
||Uxbridge/Grand Union Canal/Horsenden Hill
||I stuck to cycling today. The boats are out on the canal,
with the smaller the boat, the greater the engine noise.
The towpath was busy, but manageable. Car boot sales are
The Scafe's picture includes one Tony Cooper, who ran with club members
many times in the 80s - but not the "Cooper" of the "Cooper Test".
Meet the Committee - Roderick Hoffman
Roderick Hoffman - Chairman & Communications
been the Communications Officer for nearly ten years now and as well as
producing the weekly digests I also maintain the club website and
Facebook accounts. I've also been Chairman for most of the last six
years. Being Chairman means I have to be prepared to be the public face
of the club, internally and externally.
A running confession - I easily get bored and therefore I try to run
on lots of different routes. My favourite running at the moment is
Street-Orienteering where not only is the course different each time but
you have to make real time decisions as to where you are going to be
I joined BA, in the OR department, in 1982 and Dave Barnard
in the next office encouraged me to get into running. A year and a week after joining BA I
was on my first ever flight, travelling first to Orlando for the 1983
WARR and then up to New York for the Marathon. I have attended most
WARR events since and was the Project Manager for the London WARR in
2010. I'm now retired and able to spend more time running or involved in
running. In truth I don't do much else!
My greatest running achievement is probably in parkrun. I was slow to get
into parkrun, not being keen to get up for 9am on a Saturday only for a
5k distance run. But in an effort to attract new members I set up a club
initiative to visit different "club-featured" parkruns. Having visited Bedfont Lakes, Bushy Park, Black Park and Gunnersbury I kept going doing
different parkruns, and eventually did 52 different parkruns before
returning to Bedfont. I was the first "parkrun tourist" to do "50
in 50" and the feat is now known as a "Hoffman" (the "Hoffman club" now
has about 100 members). To date I've done parkrun at 301 different
parkrun venues including Crissy Field in San Francisco, on the finish
line of which this photo was taken.
Organisationally Allan Hardy was significant in the early days of the club
club's first chairman was Dave Blackett. Within a few years Brian Forrester
stepped into the role of Chairman and held it for most of the first thirty years
of the club. He didn't hold it continuously - Chris Stockwell had one year in charge and John Williams
was elected five times and served four (but that is another story).
I had little club organisational involvement prior to my WARR 2010 role, I'd
never been on the committee. But in 2011, after taking a year off to
recharge my batteries, I took on the role of Communications and Deputy Chairman.
Due to Brian's declining health I took over from him from 2016 and have held the
role of Chairman since.
BA Athletics Club Records - 400m
400 The 400m event is the middle run of the "Track-on-Field" challenge. So how
will our times this week compare to BA's club records?
To qualify as a record the event has to be competitive and accurately
measured and the
participant has to be a paid-up member of the club and wearing a club vest (or in
an in-house organised event). Members for whom BA is a second claim club may
need permission from their first claim club for them to run in a BA vest and
claim the record (so the same performance cannot be claimed by two different
|TRACK & FIELD - LADIES (OPEN)
|TRACK & FIELD - LADIES (FV35)
|TRACK & FIELD - LADIES (FV45)
|TRACK & FIELD - LADIES (FV50)
|TRACK & FIELD - LADIES (FV50)
|TRACK & FIELD - LADIES (FV55)
|TRACK & FIELD - MEN (OPEN)
|TRACK & FIELD - MEN (MV40)
|TRACK & FIELD - MEN (MV45 & MV50)
|TRACK & FIELD - MEN (MV55)
|TRACK & FIELD - MEN (MV60)
|TRACK & FIELD - MEN (MV65)
|TRACK & FIELD - MEN (MV70)
|TRACK & FIELD - MEN (MV75)
If you know better please send us your claim - we want to get these in the best
shape possible. New records or questions:
* Note that Jacqui managed to run faster representing Great Britain at the
World Veterans event in Sept 2018 than she had done earlier in a BA vest. The BA
vest performance counts as the club record.
82 Round-the-Blocks from
I will specifically cover how club communication has changed over the forty
years of the club.
In the early days it was important who you knew as details of club events
would be passed on by word of mouth, or by notices stuck on a noticeboard of a
club house miles from where anyone actually lived or worked. Anyone who wasn't
close to a committee member didn't have much chance of keeping up with the club.
Allan Hardy produced a few newsletters and Dave Barnard started producing the
"Green Peril" which was a list of future events and key results.
These were distributed
by the BA offices postal service.
The club needed a regular newsletter and so in July 1983 Mike Barnett
produced the first "Round-the-Block" newsletter. Named after the ten mile run we
(all!) often did on a Wednesday evening and pictured on the cover [see photo
below]. Mike only produced the first issue with George Tychowski editing issues
2 through 7. In April 1987 John Williams edited issue number 8 and John
continued editing for 35 issues until issue number 42 in February 1996. Then
Nick Edge took over and produced 8 issues. Steve Hillier produced one issue
followed by Sue Wells with six, including a massive multi-coloured issue to mark
the Millennium. Judy Connaghton (now Turton) produced five issues in 2001 and
2002, and then Paul Goldsmith took over for at least 14 issues before handing
over to Natalie Lang for up to 6 issues, the last being issue 82 in November
2011. I'm not quite sure when Paul handed over to Natalie because I don't have
copies of those - they were distributed electronically.
Overall there were 82 Round-the-Block issues over 30 years so the original
plan of having these quarterly had obviously faltered. There was a general
problem that issues required a great deal of work to produce, get printed and
distribute (including by external post to retired members) so the work got put
off which was counterproductive because there was then more content to be
included in each issue. I've got paper copies of about 57 of the 82 and I'm
currently producing an index into them. Once I've completed those I've got,
I'll be going in search of the gaps.
We have had a website from sometime in the '00s. Initially set-up and
maintained by Paul Knechtl. Having delivered a website for the WARR 2010 event I
then produced the baRUNNER site from October 2011. Prior to that Paul Brandon
had been manually forwarding all club related emails to all members but with
over a dozen of these each week we had to produce a more sustainable process.
Initially this consisted of each "email" being posted in a list on
from August 2012 I started producing the weekly Digest - available online but
also emailed to all club members. Nearly nine years on, so about 450 issues
later, that remains the current process. Facebook is used, and increasingly so,
but it is still as a back-up process to the digest.
So, whereas in the early days it was who you knew that determined whether you
knew what the club was planning, now it is how well you are connected - and I do
acknowledge that we will have lost several members because they are not
connected to the Internet or email services. We will make efforts to reconnect
for our 40th anniversary celebration.
Next Digest - Results, news, pictures, feedback, jokes,
stories - send them to the editor, Roderick Hoffman, at
Not for you, no longer interested? remove me please.
Difficulty viewing this? Read it from the website:- http://www.barunner.org.uk/News Latest.shtml. Club website: www.barunner.org.uk.