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BA Athletics Club News Digest 19th October 2020

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

Events Calendar - online here


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 (updated with a note on the impact on us of the Tiers). 

Roderick Hoffman

This Week's Events

Send me your results, for instance by filling in the tables below and forwarding to The midweek challenge this week is the Bedfont Handicap (details below) which has to be done in person, at the location and at the right time! However if you are not willing or able to meet up then you can catch up with either or both of our monthly challenges.

Track-on-Field (by 5pm on the last Friday of the month):

Name Date 1500m time 800m time 400m time 200m time 100m time Comment:
              e.g. Location

Ross Barkley 5k (by the end of the month):

Your Name Date Run Location Cumulative time for 5k distance Details or comments
  e.g. total time taken

Weekend Achievement:

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

Roderick Hoffman

Weekend Races

Starting this weekend there are two virtual events to be done over the half-term week:

For the Marlow Striders vHalf and v7mile races:

  • Just sign up, run in your own time, over your own route and at your own pace
  • Once you've completed your race, lets us know your results on the website and maybe even upload a picture or two, and you could be in with a chance of winning one of our spot prizes!
  • Every completed entry will receive an amazing FINISHERS BOX, provided especially for us by PathfinderUK, containing lots of goodies from small businesses, plus a special edition Virtual Marlow Half Marathon and 7 'buff' and wooden medal.
  • Entry fee: £18.50
  • Proceeds from race entries will go to the charities Buckinghamshire Mind and Buckinghamshire Healthcare NHS Trust.
  • See: 

If you want to do this on the actual Marlow courses please ask Alice Banks for details (e.g. via Facebook).

For the Virtual Vitality London 10,000:

  • Choose a 10K route and a day of your choice
  • Attach your running number (you'll receive this in advance)
  • Walk, jog or run your 10K
  • Upload your time (the organisers will be in touch to explain how)
  • Once you’ve completed your distance, you’ll be sent the original exclusive finisher’s medal and New Balance performance T-shirt (retail value £35) in the post. The entry fee is £15. 
  • h

This is our Run-of-the-Month (#) but for those doing the Marlow Striders event instead we'll count that also.

For either event if you are a paid-up member of the club please quote "British Airways AC". If you are not (e.g. just a friend or relative) please advise me that you have finished either of the above so that I can include you in the club results.

Roderick Hoffman

Last Week's Midweek Challenge - the Mile Walk

Club Mile Participation graphic

Taylor Team Milers"What could be easier", I thought, "than asking everyone this week to walk one mile?". But even with that simple line there are too many operative words! "Everyone", "This week", "Walk", "One Mile". Each of those words or phrases needed a paragraph explanation and who amongst us has time to read four paragraphs of instructions (or write them) when all we want to do is get out there and get some fresh air into our lungs.  My target was 100 participants - this was based on the fact that the club has about 100 members, the Facebook group has 109 members, the digest is sent out to 275 different addresses (some of which are deliberate duplicate addresses of individuals) and the most we've had for a previous week's participation was the week of our mile-by-mile marathon relay when we had about 60 participating in the relay, the Street-O and/or another weekend achievement.

Whilst we didn't achieve the 100 we got close - 82 of us have managed to record the same activity over the week and these are listed below, in the order I added them, and represented by random figures in the "BAAC" graphic above (well, random apart from the javelin thrower and the shot putter). Whilst that does leave a few gaps in the graphic above we can all interpret that as scope to get some more friends and relatives interested in the club! And what is good about the following list is that it features some familiar names who have not been familiar names over the last few months, and some new names including some people so new we haven't had the chance to meet up with yet! It is really good that we can all join in and do the same activity once in a while. You may also spot some additional names in the memorable miles recorded below the table and in the weekend achievements list. But I did say that I wouldn't name names of all the people who didn't understand the meaning of the word "walk". 82 is a great number to have participated - I'll be delighted with 10% of that for the Track-on-Field and Ross Barkley challenges!

Pictured are the Taylor Team Milers with Monica Alonso and Helen Smith at the front and then Graham Taylor, Marion Woodhouse, John Taylor, Liz Latter and Mark Taylor behind. They are wearing WARR related shirts so that after their walk they could then do the WARR2020 virtual run.

Walker Location Time Comment
Tom Rowley 00:27:56 It was enjoyable, longest I have walked continuously for ages.
Roderick Hoffman Brookside 00:09:03 It's a bit embarrassing that my power-walk time is so close to my run time! And that no one else contributed such a fast power-walk!
Eddie Ketterick Staines Towpath 00:10:00 Approximate time. The sun was bright and the river was calm but running fast.
Edward Giles Treadmill 00:13:47
Scott Davison Brighton Seafront 00:14:20 With my daughter.
Steve Newell 00:15:14 Round my usual residential street course finishing at the old Poly stadium entrance.
Duncan Wright Grasse 00:12:21 Mostly Flat
Charles Hawkshaw-Burn Esher Place estate 00:14:49
Christine Martin Huntington Beach California 00:14:45 Very hot and sunny :-)
James Glover Hankley Common, Elstead, Surrey 00:18:24 With the dog, the dog would've been much quicker if I didn't slow him down!
Ian Hudson Emmbrook area of Wokingham 00:16:35 Week 6 of my Dr Maffetone’s training schedule.
Clara Halket Army ranges 00:14:54
Mike Dennison Bushy Park 00:12:29
Andy Rayner Cox Green Points 00:16:26
Richard Ruffell Grand Union Canal, Berkhamsted 00:18:47 With Bonnie, my dog. Including stopping for various calls of nature, Bonnie not me, and lots of sniffing, again Bonnie not me
Oliver Mathai Hounslow 00:17:20
Craig Lunnon Hillingdon 00:14:33
Emma Parkes Hillingdon 00:15:29
Joe Nolan Wraysbury 00:16:22 Down to village centre and back!
Sarah Gordon Cosby 00:16:56 Walked a mile, then walked back picking up all the trash I had walked past!
Jacqui Musselwhite Woking Park 00:14:45 One lap of the park run. Loved it!
Trish McCabe Heston 00:13:50
Janet Smith Datchet 00:15:25 Not as fast as some.  Having steroid injections in my knees now so hopefully I will be able to get back running on a few months.
Charlotte Habgood Eltham, Melbourne 00:22:26
Maria Jovani Hanworth 00:16:20
Piers Keenleyside Lammas Park 00:21:33 There was group of 4 of us - me, my wife Kathryn, my brother Andrew and my sister-in-law Deborah.
Kathryn Keenleyside Lammas Park 00:21:33
Andrew Keenleyside Lammas Park 00:21:33
Deborah Keenleyside Lammas Park 00:21:33
Petra Otto Treadmill 00:11:42  How embarrassing that, in a way, I walk relatively faster than I run?!! [also 13:14 outside]
Harjit Jhooti Caesar's Camp 00:18:12 After running ten miles. Great views on the hill overlooking Farnborough Airport ✈
Emma Moreton To Costa 00:16:42 For the coffee
Melanie Miller Feltham Hill 00:17:01 Sussing out the start for my NYCVM
John Scaife Cookham 00:16:36 Long Lane to the Alfred Major recreation ground. Like Emma Moreton we finished at a Costa.
Benita Scaife Cookham 00:16:36 Long Lane to the Alfred Major recreation ground. Like Emma Moreton we finished at a Costa.
Kevin Holland Basingstoke Canal 00:15:07 From the intersection of canal, railway and M25, towards, Byfleet (and Wisley).
Maarten Stenham Echelford School to Ashford High Street 00:20:16 With both Jakob Stenham and Francesca Stenham
Jakob Stenham Echelford School to Ashford High Street 00:20:16
Francesca Stenham Echelford School to Ashford High Street 00:20:16
Di Smith Bushy Park 00:20:05 A walk in Bushy Park this morning - almost spot on 3mph!
Paul Brandon Byfleet 00:18:30 Gentle walk to keep my knees happy.
Kay Brandon Byfleet 00:18:30 Gentle walk to keep Paul happy.
David Duggan Bushy Park 00:13:55 I returned to the scene of my virtual Marathon 10 days ago - Hampton Court Gate to Teddington Gate is spot on for distance, so it had to be repeated again
Chris Stockwell Windsor Great Park 00:15:50 Not quite race walking but as fast as I can manage these days.
Stephen Taylor Drayton Green Track 00:13:28
Denis Foxley Kings College Track 00:11:56  It would have been a bit faster but I was held up by two very chatty ladies who wanted to know why I was walking so quickly
Michael Ball Byfleet 00:18:10
Barry Walters South Hill Park, Bracknell 00:13:39 Bit chilly as this was an early morning effort.
Neil Frediani Shotley Bridge to Ebchester 00:14:21 On a disused railway route. Unfortunately my refreshment centre didn't open for another 90mins unlike Emma's
Joan Foxley Kings College Track 00:13:28
Malcolm Field 00:14:00
Amanda Coombs Shepperton 00:13:36
Mike Coombs Shepperton 00:16:27
Simon Turton Wargrave 00:13:49 Sadly no Costa at the end.
Chris Kelly Dog walk 00:17:49 Maybe not gonna break any records with that.
Graham Taylor Windsor Great Park 00:16:00 Walked close, though socially distanced apart, yet all got different distances and times.
John Taylor Windsor Great Park 00:16:00
Mark Taylor Windsor Great Park 00:16:00
Marion Woodhouse Windsor Great Park 00:16:00
Liz Latter Windsor Great Park 00:16:00
Monica Alonso Windsor Great Park 00:16:00
Helen Smith  Windsor Great Park 00:16:00
Rob Shea Windsor Great Park 00:16:00
Alice Banks Pinkneys Green 00:13:50
Steve Hillier Eastcote 00:13:20
Judy Turton Windsor Great Park 00:21:03
Charlotte Turton Windsor Great Park 00:21:03
Jain Reid Richmond 00:13:20
Paul Watt Banstead Woods 00:15:45 1st attempt, at Ash, was handicapped by a train barrier - 0:24:00
Julie Barclay Banstead Woods 00:15:45
Janice Jones Banstead Woods 00:15:45
Olivia Jones Banstead Woods 00:15:45
Bob Bannister Bushy Park 00:16:01 Struggling with a shoulder/neck injury so this was my only exercise this week. Hoping to be back in the running shoes soon!
Tony Barnwell Waltham St Lawrence 00:22:30
Elaine Barnwell Waltham St Lawrence 00:22:30
Alan Friar Reading 00:16:53 A fast afternoon stroll to pick up car from garage
Tracey Mills West Bay, Dorset 00:19:30 We decided to walk into the town from the Bay
Kelly Davis Ashford 00:20:13
Christine Munden Perivale  00:17:28  The industrial area was very busy with workers and the pavements are narrow.
Mike Thorn  Local incl. front & back lawns  00:34:46  Was slightly short so made up the distance whilst cutting the lawn.
Andy Rainer XC  untimed  On Thursday as part of a 4 mile walk - with Keith Williams {Ed: I'm assuming that this is the same Keith Williams who used to do the BA Fun Run, now at Royal Mail}
Andrew Jordan Esher Common 00:24:29 Mile 4 of a longer walk following a route from memory. Kind weather, no wind to speak of.

Some Memorable Mile Stories:

Petra Otto: "The best ever mile I do remember so well still: it was the Westminster Mile on 22.9.91, and I ran a lifetime best of 6:33:6. I felt so proud then, and still do. Great to have kept a record from every race I have ever done, since 1989 when I started to run."

Christine Munden: "That will be the Self-Transcendence 3x1 Mile Relay organised by Sri Chinmoy AC at Battersea Park on Monday 10th August 2015. The organisers had promised that they would find team members for you if you turned up alone. It was a hot day and I hate running in the heat. I was introduced to two young men who assured me they were both unfit and had just returned from a stag weekend which had been 'non-stop partying'. I was skeptical - and did the mile in 7.55. They ran their miles in 5.00 and 5.22. Afterwards they protested at their times, telling me 'We told you we would be very slow'. Both had been up till 5.00am the night before! Fantastic."

Eddie Giles: "My 1st mile ,July 1965, 16years 8months. The last race of the school sports day was the 1 mile race for over 16s. It would be written on your school report if you achieved the mile in under 6 minutes. I have that written in my school report, yes, a mile in under 6 minutes, wish I could do it now!!"

James Glover: "Our favourite mile is part of a beach walk in Khao Lak, Thailand. Guess it'll be awhile until we can go there again."

Ian Hudson: "Any one of the 4 miles over the Honister Pass to Seathwaite, in The Lakes, when the OMM was abandoned in October 2008. We had survived the morning and completed our route to reach what should have been the overnight campsite to find out that the event was over and we had to return to the event centre. Already soaked to the skin, walking uphill into a gale force wind and monsoon rain with streams and water driven rubble over the road surface made those miles memorable {Ed: or perhaps 'unforgettable')."

The mile that lingers in the memory most prominently is the last one of the 1988 New York City Marathon.  In those days the BA team at the event could include as many as 50 runners, all flown across the Atlantic for free and put up at the YMCA in Manhattan for about $10 a night. It was my third visit to the event which I sometimes described as a great weekend spoiled by an over-distance funrun on the Sunday morning. I had completed the Hawaii Ironman just two weeks previously and had been resting rather than training in the meantime. There was no chip-timing in those days and many people would self-promote themselves in the start area to try to get across the start line as early as possible. I knew from my limited experience that that was a dangerous tactic and hung back in the recommended area for four hour runners.  I was rather lonely!  I started my watch on the gun and progress was slow over the Verrazzano Narrows Bridge and from memory the first mile took 13 minutes and the next one eleven but once we got down into Brooklyn it was possible to speed up a bit.  Psychological it was good because I was overtaking people mile after mile.  I caught up with our tour leader and mentor, Mike Barnett, around halfway and exchanged greetings before cruising past.  When I reached a drinks station in the Bronx around mile 20 I was beginning to get confident that I was actually going to be able to run all the way, something I had never achieved before. And so to get to the point.  After the undulations of Central Park I reached the "1 mile to go" marker and my watch was reading 3:52:00 so I knew I had just eight minutes to get under four hours and felt it was just about possible. Along 59th Street with half a mile to go I overtook an American obviously with the same ambition who asked how long we had.  His response was "Oh Sh*t!".  I don't think he made it.  I rounded the corner back into the park and with energy in hand for the incline up to the finish line was pleased to see the big digital clock come into view.  I still have the photograph of the moment I reached the line.  3:59:54.  It was 32 years ago.  It could have been yesterday.  The memory is ageing better than the legs!

Steve Newell

Craig Lunnon: "The best mile is always the last mile of any race, with a special mention for the Cabbage Patch 10 because you get to have a beer pretty much as soon as you turn onto it!"

Ian Cunningham: "Most memorable - probably the last mile of the New York Marathon five years ago. Central Park is a great place to be when you’re running well, and an 07:20 last mile counts as running well for me. Also featured one of my favourite photos … not everyone was feeling as good as I was!"

Kevin Holland: "I haven't run any marathons so my most memorable mile would have to be the last mile of the Bracknell half, some years ago."

Denis Foxley: "Memorable miles, spectating in the good old days when the mile was a regular event – fond memories of the Emsley Carr Mile with David Coleman commentating and people like Gordon Pirie and Derek Ibbotson running. My most memorable must be the Millennium Mile we did at Waterside in 2000 and my fastest at one of the BA Christmas Handicaps, I think I did around 5:06 – those were the days!"

Roderick Hoffman: "On the subject of the Millennium mile my second fastest mile in my record (going back to 1994) was the 07:06 I ran for the Gold team that day (29th July 1999). And the fastest? You guessed it, 07:05 for the Silver team a short while later."

Andrew Jordon: "I’m not sure I have a most memorable mile to be honest I tend to zone out and just lose myself on a typical run and that’s what I find therapeutic about it."

Mike Coombs: "I remember doing my best ever mile time of 4 minutes 8 seconds in the 1967 Durham County Athletics Championships at what is now called the Gateshead International Stadium. I was 17 at the time, and thought I would be able to go faster when I was older, but that remained my personal best. A couple of years later, I played football at the same stadium."

Murray Hogge: "My favourite ever mile: the last mile of my first Comrades Marathon in 2013 into Pietermaritzburg, past my mum's old school, past my dad's old university, with family up ahead at the finish, and the prospect of ending the agony of the previous 10-odd hours."

Tracey Mills: "I’ve got to say that my favourite mile of all time has to be the last of the London Marathon. When you hit mile marker 25 then round the corner at Westminster onto Bird Cage walk the feeling is just amazing and my family are always down by the 400 metre marker and my marshals too. It’s the best feeling ever."

Roderick Hoffman

Five Mile Handicap Details for Wednesday 21st October at the Bedfont Club # Please Respond

2020 Winter Five Mile Handicap CourseThis week we are returning to the Bedfont and Feltham Football and Social Club in Hatton Road, near Hatton Cross Tube Station for the first in this year's Five Mile Handicap runs. Hopefully this will be the first of six runs over the winter months. Please attend if you are able to.

This year's course is shown in the map. We have had to give Feltham a miss this year because gas pipe work is making the pavements near the railway station dangerous to run at in the light, let alone in the dark. However the two and a half mile circuit to be used has the additional advantage of being easy to navigate and it only has the one traffic light controlled junction to cross - that of Tesco. In terms of navigation just keep turning right apart from that Tesco entrance and the five or so small roads prior to the clearly labelled "Kingston Avenue" (shortly after "The Beehive" on the left). The course has been accurately measured at two and a half miles in length and we will expect runners to do two clockwise laps to make up the five mile distance and walkers to do one lap.

The concept is that each person will start their run or walk at the appropriate time so that if they run to form they will finish at exactly 7pm. Steve Newell will assign points according to how closely to your predicted time you finish. The handicap should be run without consulting your watch, though you may wear them for your own records. Start times will be indicated on the club clock which will be counting down time so that it would reach zero at 8pm. If you expect to run five miles in 55 minutes then your start time will be when the clock shows 01:55:00.  If you then finish in 58 minutes the clock would then be showing 00:57:00 hence we'd see that you were three minutes slow.

Bedfont Changing RoomsAlthough Wednesday is due to be a wet day it will be drying up from 5pm with only a 30% chance of light rain showers between 6pm and 7pm. The sunset is at 17:54 so there will still be some natural light in the streets when you start your run - but please wear your night running gear including head torches if you have one.

We ask that you arrive ready to run but if you need to change out of work gear then the club changing rooms will be open from about 17:30. The changing rooms have been redecorated, in part by BA Clubs, and this is more than a lick of paint (see picture). After your run you are welcome to use the changing rooms and showers but we need to have some Covid-19 controls. The men's changing room incorporates both the "Home" and "Away" changing rooms and our assessment is that each of these can accommodate five men at one time. Ladies will use the referee's changing room (that has also been revamped) but recommended use should be one at a time.

The event will run more smoothly if we know who will be coming so please advise us if you are considering attendance - we'd rather allow for you and have you not turn up than the other way around. So, let us know your likely attendance, whether you'd be doing the five mile two-lap course or just the one lap, what you would estimate your run/walk time to be and whether you are likely to use the showers afterwards.

Roderick Hoffman (click to respond)

Virtual Virgin London Marathon

In addition to those listed in previous weeks a recent addition to the mailing list, Christine Martin, also completed the Virtual London Marathon last weekend in 4hrs 46 minutes. Her mile, noted above, was at the beach in California so I hope that her marathon was run somewhere cooler! Well done.

Roderick Hoffman

Higginson NOW participantsNOW - Higginson, Marlow - Wednesday 14th October Report

We met, we saw each other, we had a run, we had a bit of a chat over coffee and bakery products (in groups of up to six), we had a good time. What more could we say? Most of us ran the Higginson, Marlow parkrun course (with the advantage that we had RD Alice with us to point out where the start was).

In the picture, from left to right, Benita Scaife, Fred Ashford (Black Park parkrun RD), Barry Walters, John Scaife, Stephen Taylor, Steve Hillier, Sir Steve Redgrave, Michael Ball, Alan Friar, Alice Banks and Steve Newell. I was behind the camera and John Banks had already started his walk.

Roderick Hoffman

The recent NOW meet-ups have been at Osterley Park, Wimbledon Common and Marlow.

A suggestion for November is Horton Country Park which is in Epsom & Ewell borough and currently in the first Tier.

Please contact Steve Newell if you have ideas for a midweek mid-day location for some gentle exercise.  We have often been to a parkrun location but not always and there is no reason for us to restrict ourselves.  The main requirements are car parking, toilets and a cafe with outdoor tables.  People living in second Tier areas have to behave accordingly.  People living in third Tier areas are asked to stay at home.

Steve Newell

SOLO Activity Achievements, Weekend 16th to 19th October 2020

This week 26 members and friends reported activities (plus another two for last week). 10km runs seemed to be popular as did activities in Windsor Great Park including Savill Gardens.

Colleague Activity Distance Course Start Time Duration Comments
Brian Goodey Running 7miles Savill Gardens Sat 01:04:05 LAST WEEK ADDITION / With my wife (Venda). I try to keep running ‍3 or 4 times a week if my body will let me.
Dorothy Cook Walking 6miles Culcheth to Glazebrook Sun 02:40:00 LAST WEEK ADDITION / Dorothy continues to rest and heal.
Adrian Haines Running 1mile Ifield Mill Pond Sun 00:08:15 A jog from Adrian to show us he is still around. He doesn't have much time due to his new 100mile a day Crawley to Heathrow commute.
Alice Banks Running 9miles Marlow Half Marathon Course With Marlow Striders as training for the Marlow Half Marathon - see above.
Amanda Coombs Swim 3km Hampton Pool 01:00:00 Preparation for next weekend’s Swimathon.
Andy Rayner Running 4miles XC Fri 00:52:20 Very muddy. Also 10miles cycle on Saturday.
Barry Walters Running 10k Swinley Forest and heathland Sat am 00:49:04 Tempo run going hard from the start reached halfway in 25-09 back in 23-55.
Clara Halket Running 10km Run Gatwick Sun 00:58:06 After work run.
David Duggan Running 5k Bedfont Lakes Sat am 00:33:17 Also a 10km walk on Sunday by the river at Staines. Great to be out exercising.
Denis Foxley Running Ruislip Woods Sun 01:12:00 A bit further than usual as I got lost in the many footpaths in the Woods.
Emma Moreton Cycling 20.6miles Sunbury and Thames Fri 01:37:00 Felt like I cheated on running.
Jacqui Musselwhite Running 5k Rushmoor Freedom Run Fri 00:24:50 With Julie, Paul and cheered on by mascot Tom Rowley
Jain Reid Running 10km Mortlake Sun 01:03:13 Only my 6th run in the last 7 weeks so I've gone backwards with both pace and fitness but wonderful to get out there again!
Joe Nolan Running 10km Water of Life Trail 10k Sun 01:01:28 Marlow to Hurley and back. Delighted to see Harjit marshalling. First live race for three years. Aching today as if it had been a marathon !
John Scaife Running 10miles Maidenhead Easter 10 Sun 01:29:29 Maidenhead AC helpers event with 2 laps around White Waltam airfield. Perfect conditions.
Julie Barclay Running 5k Rushmoor Freedom Run Sat 00:22:30 First 5ks after two week's self-isolation 
Maria Jovani Running 10miles Invisible Cabbage Patch 10 Sat 01:16:01 10 hilly miles around Windsor Great Park, Virginia Water and Savill Gardens. The legs have forgiven me for VMLM. Stunning autumn colours in the park.
Melanie Miller Running 6km Bisham Abbey Sun 00:48:08 Despite an early start and standing on ones feet for 5 hrs I still managed the run round new surrounds with the wonderful Harjit Jhooti.
Michael Ball Sprints Woking Sun Track session 5x120 metres with 5 minute rest between runs
Michael O'Hagan Running 2miles Potters Bar Sun 00:18:45 Fastest mile in 0:9:12
Mike Dennison Running 15miles Walton and Kingston Bridges Sat am 02:03:22 Also a faster 5k on Sunday - Hampton in 0:21:33.
Murray Hogge Running Reading Kennet Canal Including a mile run in 0:7:42.
Paul Watt Running 5k Rushmoor Freedom Run Sat 00:20:56 First 5ks after two week's self-isolation 
Petra Otto Running 5k March West Park Sat 00:37:17 16 seconds slower than last Saturday. But today the park was much more slippery because of all that rain we had. Well, that’s my excuse anyway!!!
Roderick Hoffman Running 10km Savill Gardens Fri 01:03:00 2 laps of the 5k course as my Virtual WARR 10k. Nine seconds faster than I ran in the Amsterdam Forest last year.
Simon Turton Walking 3.85miles Savill Gardens Sat 01:22:00 A leisurely stroll from Savill Gardens around Cow pond, continued on around the Polo ground and through Valley Gardens.
Stephen Taylor Running 8miles Norwood Green & Osterley Sun 01:42:09 Supporting a friend running a virtual marathon (Newport). After recent support for me it was good to support someone else.
Tony Barnwell Running 8km Widmer End to Great Kings Hill Fri 01:02:00 Quite pleased as I am at last doing better times than before the lockdown.

Roderick Hoffman

Higginson NOW Four Steves photoPhoto Caption Competition

Following our meet-up for the NOW at Higginson we had a quick caption "competition" on Facebook. The best captions submitted for the picture of the four Steves so far include:

  • "No wonder he's good at rowing, he's even bigger than Steve Taylor",
  • "I might be an Olympian but I think I'm going to be at a disadvantage if I have to run with this oar",
  • "New Covid-19 rule - No more than four Steve's are allowed together",
  • "Put your hand up if you understand the current Tier rules".

Feel free to propose your own caption (see: Link to photo on Facebook).

Roderick Hoffman

parkrun Update

Some countries are now managing Covid19 sufficiently well for parkrun to resume.  45 parkruns posted results last Saturday. New Zealand has been running again for several weeks and Tasmania restarted this week, although Hobart was cancelled due to bad weather. Northern Territory parkruns have been operating for several weeks. Other Australian States will probably go live again state by state - negotiations are ongoing. Runners will have to comply with local track and trace protocols. 

Within the British Isles, Guernsey and Isle of Man are scheduled to join Cape Pembroke Lighthouse on 31st October and enough volunteers have already come forward at both of those.  The plans to restart in Poland on 17th October were put on hold as the numbers infected by the virus have increased alarmingly.

Steve Newell

Coronavirus Warning Footnote [changes from last week underlined or struck-through]

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 outside in groups of up to 6 or, in COVID secure circumstances, up to 30 or more:

  • Do not exercise outside the house if you have been asked to isolate or 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 normally meet with up to five other persons for your exercise outside the home. Club organised events, in COVID secure circumstances, 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 club shared activities we recommend the social distancing gap of 2metres although "1meter+" can be followed during the activity itself. Any club member can organise a shared activity. To legitimize a run with more than six participants:

  • The chairman (Roderick) or the secretary (Steve Hillier) must be notified in advance that the event is taking place,
  • One of the participants must be a paid-up member of the BA Athletics Club and must be prepared to perform the duties of a "Covid-19 Coordinator", if more than six attend we recommend that that member wears a BAAC top or distinctive clothing,
  • A risk assessment has to be raised based on this template,
  • The considerations within the risk assessment must be followed,
  • After the run perform a review of the risk assessment and log and pass on any issues or lessons learned.

The government has now introduced three "Tiers" for Covid-19 management. Of the areas around where the club usually operates the London Boroughs and Elmbridge are currently designated in the second tier ("High") whereas other areas in the home counties, including Spelthorne, are in the first tier ("Medium"). The tiers make little difference to the athletics events the club is allowed to organise, though obviously we are more likely to be challenged on our Covid-19 management depending on the severity of the tier of the venue and participants. The law obliges the organisers to consider the guidance issued as well as the letter of the law. If the third Tier ("Very High") is involved we should be discouraging people from crossing the third Tier boundary. The club may choose not to organise events if in the third Tier.

After our event the Tiers do make a difference. In the first Tier we are allowed to socialise after the event, inside or outside, in groups of up to six. In the second Tier we cannot socialise inside other than within "support bubbles".

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