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 22nd December 2013

Forthcoming Events:

  • Make space for the Turkey! Run through the hangover! Christmas Day/New Year Day parkruns - parks and starts vary (see below)
  • January 2014 - Magic Mile Thursday lunchtime 9th / Surrey Leagues Ladies and Men on Saturday 11th / Club In-House event 15th / Round-the-Block annual lunchtime race Tuesday 28th / 5 Mile Handicap on Wednesday 29th. 

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.

This news digest is being sent to you because you are on the BA Athletics Club email list.  To be removed please email us at Difficulty viewing this email? Read it off the website instead - Latest.shtml

Have a great Christmas and a Happy New Year

Christmas Running Image

There will no no digest next week so use the facebook group to keep informed of running opportunities and news. To find it search for "BA Runner" in the facebook search box (with the space between BA and Runner) or link:

Roderick Hoffman, Club Communications Secretary

Reminder: Parkway Mile Results

Wednesday 18th December 2013 brought us to the 25th running of the Parkway Christmas Mile. The weather for the first run in 1989 was extremely wet - "nice weather for ducks" as we said in those prehistoric days. Because of flooding, the start had to be moved to the far subway entrance where it has been ever since.  The first run was a standard race, the relay format was adopted a few years later. Team names have always had a Christmas theme.

This year we had the dream entry of a multiple of four runners but heavy traffic caused Steve Hillier to miss even his fourth leg start time and Richard Ruffell had to run two legs with a 9 minute gap. Steve Hillier arrived just seconds later and was able to put in a timed run before Harry Wild lifted the turnaround cone and headed back to the club.  We have allowed the introduction new technology to run hand in hand with tradition - due to an incident some time ago, when Harry was left out in the cold for far too long, the start team was in mobile phone contact with Harry to give him the all clear. Several streetlamps were not working.  Let's hope we are not reporting the same in 12 months time. Last year we were complaining about a huge puddle which eventually got drained by the Highways Agency. The same one that had caused us to move the start and finish in 1989. More cyclists were using the cycle track than we are used to seeing.

This year we saw a family team of three generations of Coffeys who between them ran seven miles in one mode or another (escort ,racing, pacing or just trying to keep up!). 

There was rain threatening in a gusting wind throughout, conditions were not ideal and many runners were slower than their predictions.  An exception was Steve Taylor who matched his predicted time exactly (7:10). Steve Taylor, Roderick Hoffman and Neil Frediani all ran significantly faster (a whole minute!) than in 2012, attempting to reverse a general trend of a 25% decline in performance over the 25 years. Eddie and Alan Anderson were slower than last year as they continue to recover from recent injuries. Gary Rushmer, was the only finisher who came back in under six minutes and was the fastest for the second year in a row. Team captain leading from the front.

Thanks to Ann Coffey, Paul Brandon, Alastair Heslop and Brian Forrester for timekeeping, Paddy O'Shea and Harry Wild for marshaling.

The evening concluded with sandwiches and mince pies at the Concorde Club.

Result Team Leg Runner Leg Time Predicted 2012 Team Time Predicted Planned
1st BRIGHT STARS Mark Taylor 6:08 6:00
Richard Ruffell (1st leg) 6:27 6:20 6:17
Steve Newell 8:54 8:40 8:58
substitute Richard Ruffell (2nd leg) 6:29 6:20 27:58 n/a
ran independently Steve Hillier (arrived late) 9:23 9:00 8:39 30:52 30:00 4th
2nd WISE MEN Barry Walters 6:25 5:45 6:10
Piers Keenleyside 6:46 6:30 6:59
Alan Friar 7:50 8:00 8:14
Eddie Giles 8:20 9:00 7:02 29:21 29:15 1st
3rd TEAM COFFEY Megan (junior) 7:07
Glen (senior) 6:36
Joshua (junior) 9:04
John (best leg) (grand dad) 7:34 30:21 n/a 2nd
4th KINGS Gary Rushmer (fastest leg) 5:55 5:40 6:02
Steve Taylor 7:10 7:10 8:39
Roderick Hoffman 7:27 7:30 8:26
Alan Anderson 10:17 9:00 8:43 30:49 29:20 3rd
5th SHEPHERDS Chris Kelly 6:12 5:45
Neil Frediani 7:27 7:00 8:24
Joe Nolan 7:24 7:45
Tony Barnwell 10:07 9:00 31:10 29:30 5th

Steve Newell

Thank you to Steve Newell for organising this event this year and most years since 1989.  I've added to the table above to reveal the effort put into the planning - had Steve Hillier arrived on time then the gap between the fastest team and the slowest team would have been much reduced - just 45 seconds had we all run to our predictions and with the team that actually came 1st back in 4th or 5th.  Roderick Hoffman

ASCA Cross Country 2014 - Hosted by BAAC on Saturday March 22nd - combining with BA Cross Country Championships

The Athletics Club has been asked to host the 2014 ASCA Cross Country event and we have decided to do so on Saturday March 22nd combining the event with the BA Cross Country Championships that had been due to be held the next day.

More details will follow as they get confirmed but please put this date into your running & marshaling calendars for next year.

Roderick Hoffman

Ladies XC 3nd Match Details

Hi Ladies,

Our next XC league match is at Wimbledon Common on 11 January 2014.  Details are attached: 11Jan14.pdf

I still have un-allocated race numbers if there are any other lady runners in the club who wishes to try out cross country running.  It's cold, full of mud (mostly) and great fun! And we always have a little celebration afterwards with hot drinks, snacks and cakes!
I look forward to seeing many runners and supporters turn up on the day. Note: as informed previously, Natalie Ruffell is a 2nd claim runner for us.  If there is anyone else, please let me know in the next week as I need to inform the XC secretary by the end of this year.
Mentioning the end of the year, I wish everyone a great Christmas and wonderful New Year!
I expect most of you are up for the run round Virginia Water lake on Christmas Day - see you then :))

Clara Halkit 

Club family parkrun results and stats for 21st December 2013

BA Family parkrunner Time parkrun Commentary WAVA
Jeremy Short 19:33 Crane Park best age grade 77%
Gary Rushmer 19:53 Fulham Palace top 10, club course record 75%
David Tyas 20:04 Crane Park 72%
Richard Ruffell 21:30 Gunpowder top 10, club course record 70%
Scott Davison 23:11 Bedfont Lakes 60%
Neil Frediani 24:23 Bushy Park 64%
Tony Hird 24:29 Gunpowder 48th run 60%
Geoff Miles 24:52 Osterley 66%
Ian Cunningham 25:00 Bushy Park 59%
Roderick Hoffman 25:02 Fulham Palace 60%
Joe Nolan 25:03 Black Park 63%
Robert Fleming 25:52 Bedfont Lakes 49th run 54%
Kerstin Luksch 26:44 Gunnersbury 56%
Alan Friar 27:41 Woodley 63%
Tim Hawkes 28:41 Upton Court 45%
Steve Newell 29:23 Fulham Palace 59%
Alastair Heslop volunteer Guildford(v) timekeeper
Piers Keenleyside volunteer Gunnersbury

parkrun Highlights

Richard Ruffell runs at Gunpowder for the first time and takes Tony Hird's local record.  That is the eighth different parkrun that Richard has run in the last eight weeks - he is becoming quite a parkrun tourist.  

We have three runners closing in on their red "50" shirts - Robert Fleming who usually runs at Bedfont is on 49, Tony Hird who always runs at Gunpowder and often with a wife and son running as well is on 48.  After his sub 20' run at Fulham Palace this week Gary Rushmer is up to 47.  Once earned and arranged each of these is invited to notify us when and where they anticipate collecting their shirts and we'll publicise it so that you can have a colleague or two to hold the camera.

Now one change in the stats this week is that Adrian Haynes has changed his club to be Crawley AC which means that both Paul Knechtl and I have our records back and the club family loses the Brighton & Hove parkrun.  It must have been something I said (or wrote).  Seriously though parkrun does use England Athletics for its third party insurance so it is appropriate that we should all register under our first claim club as Adrian has now done.  We do include in the family some second claim runners if they also pay us a membership fee (Piers for example) and we will report on Adrian and others with weaker claims -  but we won't include them in the club records.

Talking of what is in the parkrun computer counts - my reported time of 25:02 is the third time I've recorded that time in the last four parkruns.  And two of the last seven have had an almost identical time of 25:04.  That is according to the parkrun computer -  two of those times should have been given to the place behind me with my actual time being several seconds faster.

Steve's parkrun stats

Christmas and New Year's day parkruns

If you have nothing better to do on these two days then consider running an extra parkrun or two.  The following are local possibilities:

Christmas Day - all 9:00 start:  Bushy park, Crane Park, Guildford, Reading, Richmond and Woodley.  Note that Father Christmas MAY be a valid excuse for not doing a Christmas Day parkrun depending on the age of the kids involved.

New Years Day: Black Park (9:00), Bushy park 9:00, Crane Park 10:30, Guildford 10:00, Kingston 10:00, Richmond 9:00, St Albans 9:00, Woodley 10:30.  Note that New Years Eve is NOT a valid excuse for not doing a parkrun on New Years Day.  Roderick intends to do a parkrun despite being on a flight for 24 hours up until 6am.

Or take advantage of quiet roads or accommodation with relatives and do a parkrun further afield - the full list is here: . Check the start times carefully because they do vary - but note that you CAN do two parkruns on New Years Day and they will both go into the parkrun computer!

Roderick Hoffman


Here are some further Coaching and Official training opportunities: flyer 17.12.2013 onwards.PDF & courses 17.12.2013 onwards.pdf.  The club welcomes anybody going on such courses and will consider supporting you financially. If you are interested but the locations are a problem let me know and we can research other venues.  Steve Hillier

Virgin London Marathon December Newsletter (including dates of all of their events next year): Newsletter December 2013.pdf

The sometimes popular Harrow Hill race will be on 16th February next year.  This is a five mile race including two climbs up Harrow Hill - good training for anyone thinking of doing the Berkhamsted Half-Marathon in March. enter on-line >>

LATE NEWS: Multi-terrain, wind and rain at the start didn't stop Piers Keenleyside finished the Portsmouth Coastal marathon today in 3:35:18 (17 minutes faster than last year).  Jasvir Modaher finished in 5:46:13.

News for the next BAAC News Digest?

Please send items for inclusion in the next Digest.  Results, news, feedback, jokes, stories - send it to us at,uk.  You can copy Paul Brandon and Roderick Hoffman in BUT the news@ address is the one that we use when the digest is compiled.

Club website:



Full Index