I...I...I...It was one of those Saturday mornings when the sun comes up, has a quick look round, thinks "Naaah, no chance" and goes back down again. The sky was murkier than the future of Brexit and the temperature was lower than the number of years on Prince Philip's no claims bonus. Even the squirrels in the park had rolled over and pulled up the duvet, as a gaggle of cold-looking hardy parkrunners slowly congregated at the bottom of The Orangery steps.
The wind may have been chilly and the sky may have been grey, but that didn't stop an astonishing 557 people braving the elements and heading on down to Markeaton Park. Well done to everybody who is still keeping up their New Year's resolution to get out running. Great stuff! It's also impressive to see that 39 of the 61 people visiting Markeaton for the first time today were doing their first ever parkrun. Brilliant! If you can show up on a freezing cold morning like this, then most of the others will be a doddle (honest!) Welcome along and may it be the first of many.
As we huddled together for warmth, Tim gave the run briefing to the waiting masses. It was a brief briefing, kept short so nobody perished in the conditions before even starting the run. A serious point was made about keeping some dogs under control after a string of dog-related mishaps. It couldn't happen again this week could it! Could it?! Well, I'm afraid it could. More about that in a bit.
For one glorious moment we thought we had an exotic tourist from Italy! Only to discover, a few seconds later that it was indeed...Ripley, a place that I'm pretty sure has never been mistaken for Italy ever before in the history of anything ever. Although I suppose there are a few pizza shops and a fair few ruins. Anyway, there DEFINITELY were tourists from Penrhyn, Derry City and Kings Lynn, so that made up for the disappointment. I blame the cold. "Welcome!" to everybody ( or "Benvenuto!" if you are from Ripley...)
In sad news this week, Sir Brian Silcock, our amazing photographer, is stepping down, probably until the Spring. Brian will be missed by everybody at Markeaton parkrun as he has been a permenant fixture at the side of the course ever since the Darley parkrun days and it won't be the same to not have him popping out of the bushes to snap us all in all our sweaty, rosy-cheeked 'glory'. Hope to see you back soon Brian!
Because of a Brian-shaped hole, this week we are going to have to rely on an 'artist's' impression of part of the course. I'm really sorry. Come back soon Brian...please...
So, as we set off on the two laps of the course, Daniel Thompson was beginning his milestone 50th run and she finished it with a cheeky PB too! Now that is doing it in style! Also setting out was the amazing Jane Winter with an intrepid band of park jog/walkers. Jane paced them round perfectly and it's a great way of easing yourself in to starting parkruns or trying to get yourself fitter. So please follow Jane every week on the jog/walk path if that suits your style. (Please just keep it to parkruns though as Jane doesn't appreciate people following her round the shops etc.)
As seen from the scribble above, the Puddle of Doom was back! I don't know about you, but I've missed it. If you skirted round the edges of splashed through the middle, we hope you enjoyed this added obstacle for no extra cost. it just gives you something else to think about. As if the uphills, downhills, and all the other bits weren't enough.
A huge thank you to each and every volunteer. From the pacers to the scanners and everybody in-between, you were incredible and none of this could happen without you. Extra kudos for doing what you do whilst freezing your hi-viz's off. We salute you.
With Markeaton parkrun's explosion of popularity recently, there are obviously a lot more people out on the course. Until the council come up with a path-widening scheme like the M1, we have to share the same space with more bodies, both furry and non-furry ( and a bit of both..not mentioning any names) As previously mentioned, there have been a few incidents with dogs over the past few weeks so we all need to be a bit more aware of our surroundings and who is near us. With more parkrunners comes more responsibility!
Let's not forget that Markeaton parkrun is a free friendly fun run for EVERYBODY. if you have two legs, one leg or four. If you are pushing a buggy, being pushed in a buggy or being over-taken by a buggy. If you wear headphones, iPhones or saxophones. If you run, jog, walk or crawl. If it's your first parkrun, your 101st or you've done so many you can't remember. If you are from Ripley or Italy. If you run round round wearing a tutu, with a chicken on your head singing the greatest hits of New Kids on the Block, then EVERYBODY is welcome. (Well, perhaps not the last bloke, that's just too weird)
But you get the idea. Let's all just enjoy this beautiful and amazing hour or two in the park together. Like-minded people coming together with smiles on our faces and trainers on our feet. We're all here for the same reason so let's all chill out and play nice. HOORAH!
All this and the threatened MEGA TRIPLE FINISH FUNNEL, lay dormant, waiting to be unleashed but shunned like Marcelo Biielsa on a day trip to Derby. Oh well, maybe next week..
Here come the stats...
Event number 263
19th January 2019
This week 557 people ran, jogged and walked the course, of whom 61 were first timers and 90 recorded new Personal Bests. Representatives of 34 different clubs took part.
The event was made possible by 37 volunteers:
Samantha JAMES • Tony EVANS • Tim SPATE • Russell HUBBER • Gerry WHITE •
Kenneth MALTON • Chris WHITE • Tony SMITH • Neil BARNES • Rob SEYMOUR •
Rachel FARROW • Catherine SEYMOUR • Jerry EVANS • David KEEGAN • Richard
TISSINGTON • Shane WALKER • Matthew WEST • Tim BENTLEY • Jane WINTER •
John WINTER • Richard WINTER • Paul BROCKLEHURST • Helen BROCKLEHURST •
Neve BROCKLEHURST • Alan WILLIAMS • Gary WATERFALL • Jasper ROBINSON •
Viv MOXHAM • Mike KNOWLES • Nick POTTER • Alison NUNN • Dave NUNN • Rolf
CUMBERLIDGE • Sarah WHITEHOUSE • Sue KINROSS • Lucy STONE • Oliver
Today's full results and a complete event history can be found on the Markeaton parkrun Results Page.
The male record is held by Alex PILCHER who recorded a time of 15:20 on
29th October 2016 (event number 164).
The female record is held by Alison LAVENDER who recorded a time of
18:21 on 27th October 2018 (event number 250).
The Age Grade course record is held by Val NAYLOR who recorded 96.36%
(25:10) on 1st September 2018 (event number 242).
Markeaton parkrun started on 27th April 2013. Since then 11,329
participants have completed 70,247 parkruns covering a total distance of
351,235 km, including 14,048 new Personal Bests. A total of 803
individuals have volunteered 5,551 times.