Run Report #249 -14th April 2018

140 runners made it through another Friday the 13th unscathed to turn up bright and breezy at the inaugural and never to be repeated 249th Clair parkrun. I made my debut as Run (not Race) Director. Sorry Jay, Kim, Helen and pretty much everyone else who kept correcting me. I will learn.

The early mist lifted as the sun started to beat down, this (and I will say it quietly) really felt like a Spring day. As is my job, I did a solitary lap to check the course and I was able to report back to parkrun HQ that I did not find a single puddle, carrier bag, dog present or anything else to prevent fast PBs for all… Game on !

We were able to welcome a number of tourists from Northampton - the shoe capital of the world, who’d come down to do the Brighton Marathon and wanted
a nice, light run out before the full 26.2 miles. Ha! should have picked Hove Lawns and a visitor from the hallowed Bushy, the home of the first ever parkrun
14 years ago. We also welcomed at least 5 first-timers who were brave enough to put their hand up for acknowledgement.

I also noticed that Eric Hepburn made his 99th parkrun, so please turn up next week Eric and make it a double celebration!
Nick Brayne ran in his 50th parkrun as did my old mate Kim Cruttenden who marshalled as a Tail Runner.

Despite my best efforts during the announcements to convince everyone it was “Clair Hall parkrun” and possibly an indoor even, we had some great achievements – Louis Taub came home first with no discernable sweat in 18:53 with George Adams in 2nd and Oliver Day 3rd and just a shade over 20 minutes. However, very impressive were 5th and 6th with new PBs, stand up Andy Dray and Stephen Gibbs. First lady home was Abby Ross in 22:25 who looked like she was getting faster and faster as the line drew in and the first junior across the line was Isobel Russell in just over 23:09.
Everyone no doubt helped by a large (legal) dose of Vitamin D from the sunshine.

Thanks to all the Marshalls who without whom…. and thank you if you ran. Don’t forget to volunteer yourself from time to time, it is a lot of fun, really easy
and a great team to be part of.

Suffice to say that next week is a BIG milestone at Clair parkrun with the 250th Don’t miss it, there may be some cakes……

David Leen: Run (not Race) Director


Run Report #246 – 24th March 2018

I was away from parkrun last week with the Albion faithful in Manchester, experiencing horizontal snow and, frankly, glad not to be out in ‘technical clothing’. What a difference a week can make, with excellent weather greeting us today on the occasion of the 246th parkrun at Clair. By ‘excellent’ I mean a mild, overcast Saturday morning that made for pleasant running conditions as well as comfortable volunteering.

We had a non-running visitor to Clair today. Jenny from one of parkrun’s national sponsors, Exodus Travels, was on hand to discuss the company’s exciting adventure holidays. I’ve had a quick look at their site – quite interesting stuff. Corporate sponsors are important to maintaining the free-of-charge, much-loved event that is parkrun, so I make no apology for a quick plug in this report. Jenny experienced a ‘reverse commute’ to Haywards Heath, coming down from Balham on the train. She said it was ‘soooo easy’…!

One (or maybe more than one) of the runners’ efforts today was being beamed live on FaceTime to Australia by a proud grandparent. I was impressed that the gentlemen was not only using Millennial technology with such aplomb, but that he managed to get any kind of decent signal to complete the call. I hope the folks down-under appreciated the wonderful scene at the finish line!

In the ‘call for any visitors??’ I didn’t acknowledge a lady from Greenwich, apologies. She enjoyed her run at Clair, remarking that it wasn’t as hard as people say it is. Come on everyone, we need to keep this apocryphal story going, otherwise we’re gonna get rumbled! All I’d say is that I easily shed more than a minute at other runs, so I’m happy to perpetuate this particular suburban legend to anyone who’ll listen.

Finally, the runners and riders for this week. Well done Andy Hind for the first place overall, Katie Wright as the fastest lady, Lucas Blackwell as the fastest Junior and Jamie Goodhead for the fastest (and only) runner in flipflops! Thanks to all the organisers and volunteers – give it go one week if you haven’t already.

Andrew Swaffer : Run Director


Run Report #245 – 17th March 2018

Well it was St Patrick’s day and in spite of the RD’s effort to inject some cheer into the event it was cold wind and snow that greeted our runners today. As it happens this was exactly what the boys in green were needing to put one over on England at Twickenham later in the day – well done to Ireland – back to the drawing board for Eddie Jones. Still 118 of you braved the conditions to be shepherded home by Marion our faithful tailperson, thank you all for turning out and thank you especially to our marshalls who didn’t have the opportunity to keep warm by running!

James Collins was our winner today – very fitting name but no known relationship to Michael. Miranda Skinner took the ladies honours and young Finlay Blythe (JM10) took the best age graded result with 77.92% and a fine 20:59 clock time. In spite of the weather we had 6 people come to a parkrun for the first time ever and 3 “tourists” making a debut at Clair park - we hope to see you back soon. The chill conditions kept you all moving and 14 – more than 10% of you- clocked a PB. With more benign weather you are all sure to go faster than ever. In terms of anniversaries Jon Lavis is showing as clocking 100 in the results but was very bashful in terms of volunteering this on the morning – if I missed your hand, I do apologise Jon – blame the snow, the Guinness or my hat. Young Daniel, who’s been doing the parkrun as part of his DoE series, brought along some yummies to keep us happy after the run – many thanks to you and good luck in the next steps.

A very special thanks to the marshals who stood out in the cold and cheered on our runners - many many thanks for being there. We hope to see you next week in warm weather.

With that I’m off to celebrate an Irish win and my birthday – Slan go foil!

Mark Sykes : Run Director


Run Report #243 – 24th February 2018

Clair Parkrun #243- 24.2.18
138 keen athletes braved the very cold morning to run our challenging course, including guests from Sheffield, Peterborough and Horsham. Steve Canning from Sheffield Tri Club travelled down to Sussex specially to take part in the Clair Parkrun, or so he said, and achieved a very good time of 19.04.
It was a pleasure to be able to announce two notable milestones. It was a double celebration for Keith Brown, his 100th Parkrun on his 40th birthday. Later in the day he celebrated the occasion by watching Brighton's best win of the season. What a perfect day for Keith and thanks for providing hot cross buns too. Freddie Barrie ran his 50th and dad Laurence is now on 99!
Many thanks to all the wonderful volunteers, without whom this event would not be possible. Once again some of our legendary runners acted as pacemakers and they did a fine job of helping everyone to strive for a new PB.
Well done to Robert Watts, first home in 18.34. Special congratulations are due to junior runner Isobel Russell, first lady to cross the finishing line with a time of 22.24. Well done to all those who achieved PB's.
As you will have seen, tomorrow is snowed off. Hope to see you all again on Saturday 10th March.
Stuart Ferguson : Run Director


Run Report #242 – 17th February 2018

Fine sunshine greeted our Clair parkrunners for the first outing of Lent. Work in the park had left some additional hazards – in particular deep tyre-tracks along the path next to the cricket pitch – we hope these are repaired soon. A full team of marshalls meant we were able to look after all our runners as we wanted. We had 126 finishers this week plus our delightful tail-person Carys. 13 of you turned up at "the Tough One" for your first ever parkrun – how brave – we also had 7 tourists making their first effort around our stiff 4-lap test. 16 of you garnered PB's - no pancakes on you! James Collins toyed with Louis before stretching his legs to come home first. Sam Ridley, wearing very fetching shades was first lady home – she also took the age-graded best of the day narrowly ahead of Julian Boyer.

parkrun is not just for speedies and all sorts of people come along to enjoy the fresh air. Special thoughts this week to one of our number who took on our parkrun perhaps just too soon after surgery – we wish you well and hope to see you again soon. Our largest group on the day were the V55-59 males – who says Britain is a nation of couch potatoes? There were no significant milestones showing this week, but we did have a couple of the 250 club. Jon Lavis and Freddie Barry completed runs 99 and 49 respectively - milestones next week?

Once again many thanks to all our Marshalls – and to the runners who thanked them. Please consider to swap places before too long.

Mark Sykes : Run Director

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