A slightly surreal and misty morning welcomed us to parkrun – at least I assume it was the weather causing the fogginess and not the fact I’d forgotten to put my contact lenses in. It was quite atmospheric as we gathered for the welcome and briefing from Lis as our Run Director. We were back on what is being called the ‘Summer’ Course, and it was definitely less soggy than last time I ran. And looking at the forecast for the week ahead, maybe sunnier weather is on its way for us.
Clearly the mist had affected one male runner, as we set off from the start line, proceeded to run the other way to the rest of us. The majority of us ran forwards and carried on in that way. This week 188 people ran, jogged and walked the course. 28 of those were first timers – congratulations to you all – come back and join us again. We had a number of tourists joining us, and 14 different clubs were represented today.
First male finisher was Leo STALLARD in a time of 18:39, second over the line was Ian GAY in a time of 20:07 and third male was Ray GUNNER in 20:30. Ray GUNNER was a first timer at Chichester – great to see you. Great to see three different age categories of male runners in those three positions, demonstrating that parkrun really is open to everyone. For the women, first female finisher was Sarah LOY in a time of 22:02, second was Claudia MILBURN in 23:36, and third was Clare MOORE in 24:14. Also noteworthy that three categories of female runners represented in those three positions! (the fourth positions for both male and female added yet another age category to each group).
In fact while I’m looking at stats (because I like them!), I note that our most mature female runner today (is that politically correct – I hope so) achieved a Personal Best – so well done to Mary FAIRFIELD with her time of 43:47. Not to exclude the men, our two most mature male runners today were both in the 75 – 79 category, and have both achieved over 100 runs – well done to both Timothy SAMUELSON (normally found at Maidstone parkrun) and Don GRANT. 14 of our runners recorded new personal bests today.
(We do always tend to highlight the first finishers, but it needs to be remembered that parkrun is a run not a race. While we all want to do our best, we do need to look out for other runners and park users as we complete the course, particularly on the downhill path to the finish line).
My aesthetically pleasing time of the week goes to Logan COOPER. Logan finished in a time of 21:13, which adds up to 7. Logan finished in 7th place. It was his 7th parkrun. His gender position was 7th. And his age grading continued the theme of 7 – neatly being 70:07%.
My award for ‘unexpected marshal of the week’ goes to Nadia ANDERSON who was spotted on the downhill path, encouraging all our runners. The award for the most enthusiastic marshal goes to Sanchia STANLEIGH-TURNER, a well deserved award this week.
As always, our event on Saturday would not have happened without our volunteer team who made it happen. Today we owe a huge thanks to the following 15 superstars, who all deserve a Commonwealth Gold Medal for their contribution:
Jane TAYLOR • Mark PONSFORD • Lis PESKETT • Yvonne PALMER • Nadia ANDERSON • Catherine CANNON • Ben RITCHIE • Peter ANDERSON • Jeremy HARRISON • Emma WICKENS • Sanchia STANLEIGH-TURNER • Liz STANLEIGH-TURNER • Kik LOOSLEY • Marcus HAMMERTON • Peter JAMES