The One on New Year’s Day
Report by Karen Cole
On turning up at the registration area, we found a cheery band of volunteers, who were massing and being briefed as to their duties which lifted our spirits as they do each parkrun morning, especially as overhead the skies were grey and heavy, as we took the small walk to the start line in a long procession of colourful tees. The parkrun fairies were kind to us today and gave us cooler conditions, which provided the perfect opportunity to talk to others before we started. Now where did I put my gloves?
Thank you to Nicki, today's RD, for the runner's briefing where runners were warmly welcomed and introduced to the course layout. This type of course provides lots of opportunities for the faster runners to overtake and to receive and indeed give encouragement as they whip past us slower mortals. This course gives perfect opportunity for some fast times and certainly some PB opportunities arose I am sure. I can see more challenge to this course when cooler and wetter conditions set in as I reckon the grass underfoot could bring on that special parkrun mud, which was already starting to appear. (Mud? At Riddlesdown? – Surely not! – ED)
There were quite a few seasoned tourists at Riddlesdown today which allowed the perfect opportunity to catch up on where we had been and where we were heading off too, especially as it was the New Year Double, where athletes attempt to complete two parkruns, at their normal venues but at slightly adjusted times in order to make this possible. Today, tourists from Tooting Common, Banstead Woods, Dulwich and Havant were using Riddlesdown parkrun as their first venue, before shooting off to other events for parkrun number two.
Nicki, our RD, gave a big thank you to the volunteers who gave up their time to ensure that we were able to run this morning. There were certainly a cheery band of Marshals out on the extremely well marked out course, all supporting by giving encouragement and clapping. Don't forget if you are unable to run, have a race coming up or are just generally a good egg, then volunteering is a great way to give back to the parkrun community. Head over to the Riddlesdown parkrun webpage for details of the next few weeks’ roster and sign up for a position that suits you - you get to wear a hi-vis jacket, what more incentive do you want?!
First timers, as mentioned above, are always warmly welcomed and are at the start of their parkrun journey, working towards their first milestones. The trick when working towards your milestones is #DFYB - Don't Forget Your Barcode!
4 of you were listed as unknown runners this morning. That's one run less to count towards those milestone tees.
Were you celebrating a special milestone this week? That's the great thing about parkrun isn't it, that each person has their own individual journey to talk and share about. Especially pertinent though to also remember to hand in your finish token, parkrun needs them for next week as they unfortunately are not a souvenir, medal or indeed your own version of Bingo.
There are usually hot drinks, breakfast, conversation and early results available at The White Lion for the apres parkrun, which allows perfect opportunity to catch up on how all of our runs had gone and what we thought of the course. Unfortunately, we had a date with Roundshaw parkrun, part two of our New Year Double, so couldn't today.
Thank you again Riddlesdown parkrun for starting our weekend off on a positive note. Look forward to seeing you all again soon.