With thanks to Andy Harris for another excellent run report...
So; might I suggest that you print this page, then cut round the aide memoire below and on Saturday 17th Jan 2019 make sure you take it with you to Cranleigh parkrun…
Because on that day you will be standing listening to the run director’s brief in your thickest leggings, two tops, a woolly hat and a pair of gloves ‘as worn on Everest’.
But you will still be blue, shivering and feeling on the edge of hypothermia as a vicious blizzard blasts sleet across Knowle Park, the grey forbidding skies slowly envelop your head. Your feet will be gently sinking lower and lower into the swamp like mud until the brown cold liquid oozes over the top of your trainers and finds its way into your soggy half frozen socks. Volunteers huddle around in what look like portable artic sleeping bags.
At that point drag the below aide memoir out of your survival bag, try and blink the frost off your eyelids and read it to remind yourself that on 7 July…
IT WAS FAR TOO HOT! At today’s parkrun the sun blasted down onto hard baked concrete and not a breath of wind disturbed the brave 125 runners, joggers and walkers who sweltered their way round the furnace that (is just for once) Cranleigh parkrun. They were well supported by 14 Volunteers possibly showing off far more flesh than is seemly on an early Surrey morning and sporting some very fetching headgear. HOT HOT HOT.
OK, OK – enough of the weather – even if we are British. Though top marks to everyone who did manage to get around the course in the conditions. We had some excellent runs, but when it is that warm we do encourage you to try and run and jog around within yourself.
Today was our 200th parkrun at Cranleigh; and as is our practice we celebrate by going backwards!
And what a way to celebrate a double century at Cranleigh! It’s been quite a journey - in just under 4 years that means we have seen 400 lots of people crest Green Hill with a wide variety of grimaces and half-hearted smiles.
Together we have run 71,110 KM; whilst that may be a normal week’s training for the likes of Chris Finill, Ian Helm or Harriet Irving for us other mortals it means we could have jogged to Sydney and would be just passing Delhi on the way home (hopefully still clutching a crumpled barcode).
As we enter our third century we must again offer thanks to those who worked so hard in the early days to set up and nurture Cranleigh parkrun – all of whom are kindly still supporting us. We do appreciate your efforts.
Today saw some remarkable efforts on the course as well. Out in front there was an excellent run by a newcomer to Cranleigh - Callum Gillett. Callum went around in an awesome but seemingly relaxed 16.59; the tenth best time we have seen (but try again on 17 Jan Callum…).
In second and third places – shoulder to shoulder for much of the time – was another newcomer James Adams and regular Oliver Gosden who gave it all in finishing just a second off his best.
In fourth place was Sam Allwood – whose only other parkrun was 4 years ago on Teeside – since then he has managed to improve his effort grade by over 20 percentage points – nice training regime!
Amongst the females we had a first place with a very good run by another visitor - Katie Lysons – followed home by the ever-impressive Harriet Irving and then Abi Truelove heading back to her best.
Anne Davidson came in next with an excellent effort grade, followed by Lynne Harris with the day’s top effort grade.
As a marshal watching the field sweat past I would not wish to play down the fine runs by those at the front (surely they were hurting under those smiles??) but I also pay particular tribute to those working their way around further down the field. The effort and determination and redness seem to increase proportionately as you go down the list and people are out there almost three times as long as Callum. Very well done to everyone who actually completed the course.
And then there was the teenager who slowed down to say to me that he’d missed the briefing and it was only once round wasn’t it? On being told it was twice he demonstrated that he was aiming for a grade 9 GCSE in Anglo Saxon idiom but fair play he staggered on and 15 minutes later wobbled past on his second lap (still muttering).
It was grand to see 32 visiting us for the first time – though for once we had nobody totally new to parkrun. Our tourists came from far and wide, including a group from Rushmoor (who had given up their course to the Farnborough air show carpark), Street, Enfield, and Banstead. Nice to see, for a first time at Cranleigh, epic runners Ceara Joyce from Nonsuch (266 runs) and Viv Mitchell from Croydon (227 runs). We also welcomed a grand group from Horsham seeing what life was like up the road.
Despite having to skip round fried eggs gently cooking on the open paths we had 12 people record personal best. Very well done to Quentin Engstrom, Nathan Rogers, Natalie Moon, John Large, Andy Obrien, Gillian Neal, Kathryn Purcell and William Batchelor.
Regular Tom Irving – getting back to top form after a year or so of injuries – knocked nearly a minute and half off his best. Young Rupert de Vos raced around just ahead of mum Emma to smash his record time. Gavin Hurman made it an excellent three PBs in a month. Joe Ross’s warm weather training in Australia made him feel at home as he went under 19 minutes for the first time. Young Nathan ROGERS made us wait nearly three years but beat his PB today.
And this week we celebrate a couple of age groups. It was lovely to see the enthusiasm of under 10s Edward Hoy, Rupert De Vos, Harry Lancaster, Brandon Engstrom, Gethin Lansdowne and Jack Creak.
And just as young at heart, even if the computer says something slightly different, very well done to the ladies of a different age group who battled round in fine form - Anna Tapponnier, Louise Bryant, Ceara Joyce, Kim Sadd, Nadine Fenelon, Tina Jones, Penny Lynch, Natalie Moon, Cat Wallman and Jenny Lansdowne.
Celebrations also to Andy Bryant who completed his 100th parkrun. Andy has been a stalwart at Cranleigh where he has completed 90 of his runs, bringing his time down from 29 mins to 25. He and Louise have also volunteered 38 times, and Andy has turned into a proper triathlete!
We have quite a few people approaching their landmark 100 – hopefully Penny Green will achieve this shortly when John returns from his travels – will he be at the top of the hill or at the finish to welcome her home?
Nice to see our epic course setter Martyn Greaves back from his travels – though while he has been away Kate and Chris Mason have made course set up an art form. Hopefully nobody will be confused by the proliferation of equipment boxes as the junior parkrun gets into its stride.
And talking of volunteers; many thanks David Andrews, Caroline Todman, Martin Bamford, Deborah Riseley, Kate and Chris Mason, Martyn Greaves, Karen Bryant, Andy Harris, Stephanie Lawson, Karl Rivers and Emma Pritchard.
And respect to volunteer Peter Crummett who bravely sweltered in thick motorcycle leathers prior to going off to help with a rally. And respect to Paula Elms who has taken over as volunteer coordinator but had to be away cooking hot meals for Beavers and Cubs at camp!
Looking forward to seeing you all next week when – just for a change – it looks like it will be hot, hot, hot…
Today's full results and a complete event history can be found on the Cranleigh parkrun Results Page.