Wow, what a morning. Now I quite like volunteering, but even the most diehard of hi-vis wearing heroes was probably thinking to themselves “It’s pretty wet and cold out here mind”. There’s no way I could start this run report with anything other than a massive thank you to the nearly two dozen individuals who volunteered with us this weekend, whether it be helping set up at 8am or beeping all 163 of you through the finish funnel in just over an hour. We say it every week but parkrun only happens because of the volunteers (admittedly without runners it would be a pretty quiet morning too) and so as a token of my appreciation, here are their names in pixels all of their own:
Sarah Ginge Watson • Barry Watson • Matty Sinfield • Philip John Holdcroft • Clive Cohen • Catherine Bishop • Elizabeth Daniel • Richard Murphy • Ken Douglas • Anna Lambert • Ross Lambert • Katie Van de Linde • Len Van de Linde • Jos Bartlett • Tamsin Leybourne • John Tredgett • Chris Nicholls • Ella Van de Linde • Matt Beatty • Alison Bill • Keith Henderson • Richard Long
Surprisingly for something that happens at 9am every weekend across the country, it rarely rains on parkrunday and so thankfully days like last week are pretty rare, which means even less of an excuse not to volunteer yourself! We are always on the lookout for new volunteers, so if you think you could help with any of our roles on a Saturday morning, just drop us an e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.
With that done and done we can look to the run itself. I suspect the weather may have played a role in our lowest attendance since the beginning of November last year, with only 163 runners joining us for a jolly jaunt through the fields. Regrettably I was unable to experience the conditions myself but I have been told it was reasonably muddy out there which probably accounts for the fact that our first finisher this week, Matthew Cottiss, came through in just over twenty minutes (our current record is held by Phil Norman who completed the course in a blistering 16:37 last November). Following behind Matthew was first-timer Luke Kretschmer who finished in 21:44 and Paul Myatt (this week’s second run-iest runner) who completed the course in 22:04.
Our most ‘run-iest’ runner this week came in the form of Ros Cranston who completed her 297th parkrun in total, with 218 of those at Finsbury parkrun and 37 here at Tring. At the other end of the spectrum we welcomed 21 first timers to the course, of which 12 were completing their very first parkrun. You certainly picked a good day to start as from now on it can surely only get easier… surely?
Chrissie Howard, one of our first timers from Billericay Striders RC was the first female across the line in 24:48, followed by Karen Foxwell-Moss in 26:00 and Martina Tredgett in 26:23.
Now for some interesting (not guaranteed) statistics about our Junior runners this week. For the first time in nearly two years we had less than ten Junior boys completing the course – they were well and truly shown up by the 19 Junior girls who aren’t afraid of a bit (a lot) of mud! This is the first time that we’ve had double the number of Junior girls than boys. Well done everyone!
Somehow, in spite of the conditions, 7 of you were able to set new PBs this week and because I consider that to be quite the achievement, here’s a name check for you: Ian Davis, Joshua Whitton, Adam Woodhams, Huw Jones, Adrian Kelly, Kay Ison and Ben Patterson – a jolly well done to you! Joshua and Adam must particularly like the mud as this was their second PB in a row, whilst Ben was able to smash the PB he set back in April by 2 seconds. Good work people!
As ever there were a few celebrations for our runners this week, including Julie Relph and Magnus Allan who completed their 50th run on Saturday. Meanwhile, some 250 miles away on the North Sea coast regular Tring parkrunner Pauline Brown completed her 100th parkrun whilst at South Shields in Newcastle. This is one I’m really pleased to announce because I remember Pauline completing her very first parkrun on the same day as I did my first stint as Run Director. It just goes to show that, especially on those miserable days, ticking off another ‘one for the shirt’ pays off! Rain? Pah!
Whilst taking a break from his day job at the UK’s premier codebreaking institute, GCHQ, our resident statistician was able to glean the following facts and figures from this week’s results:
• Not a single ‘Helen’ ran at Tring this weekend for the first time since February 2017!
• We saw the 200th sighting of a runner called ‘Robert’ and the 100th for a ‘Katrina’, whilst ‘Walker’ has now crept up to 50 appearances!
• Dan Stoor has become the 21st person to run 100 times at Tring!
• For the first time ever we had two runners, yes two, from RAF AC with us!
How about that for worthy use of exclamation marks?
And finally… having had a good trawl through the results this week I can reveal the winner of our prized ‘aesthetically pleasing time of the week’ award. Former Run Director Jenny Gribbin should have known better than to run two seconds too slow as otherwise she’d have completed the run in a most excellent 34:56. As it is I am pleased to name Tring regular Kath Pither as this week’s recipient for her superbly timed 33:33.
Time to bid farewell for another week and to wish you all a dry and pleasant run on Saturday morning!
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