Tring parkrun – Week 231 – Simples

On the surface it all seems so simple; turn up about 8:50, listen to the run brief, head out for a run around the park, get scanned, perhaps have a coffee afterwards, get results text and tick off another one for the shirt. Whilst I know most of you are fully aware it’s not quite that simple, I just wanted to start today’s report off with a huge thank you to the volunteers who make it appear that way:

Allison Williment * Andy Evans * Chris Lea * Emma Smith * George Fletcher * Graham Campbell * Isobel Monks * Jamie Lea * Jos Bartlett * Ken Douglas * Kirstie Campbell * Martin John Arnold * Oliver West * Philip Pugh * Samuel Fryer * Sarah Wade* Stuart Page * Thomas Page * Tom Foley * Trevor Lark * Vicky Lea

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Thanks to our volunteers!

A special thanks must go to our Event Director Andy Evans who, when I was faced with some results processing errors I’d never even seen before, positively leapt into action to help work through the finish times in order to help me publish a set of results which hopefully bore some resemblance to the time you thought you’d run.

We had another high turnout of runners this week as 272 of you descended on Tring Park to tackle our winter course. Not quite in the top ten of highest attendances, but still a fairly sizable crowd who gathered around the Run Director’s pulpit (otherwise known as a pile of concrete rubble) on the morning.

Well done to Trevor Desouza and Tamsin Leybourne who both completed their fiftieth parkrun this weekend, along with Juniors Beau Wild and Freddie Hart who have now earned the right to wear the coveted ‘10 t-shirt'. We also welcomed 17 first timers who completed their very first parkrun! Thank you for choosing to fly with Tring parkrun and we hope you join us again next week!

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Well done Tamsin on your 50th parkrun!

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Well done Trevor on your 50th parkrun!

Someone we were particularly pleased to see again was Tricia Shackock who last ran with us back on the 6th December 2014, some 225 parkruns ago! Given our parkrun itself is only 231 events old, you won’t be surprised to hear that this was a new record for ‘longest time between two Tring parkruns’. Don’t be a stranger Tricia!

With the high turnout and perhaps a result of the altered course, we had a huge number of runners finish in minute twenty-six, with thirty-two of you crossing the line in just sixty seconds.

Finishing strongly this week were Jennifer Scott who ran a huge PB of 3:51s and Rob Haddock who improved by 1:53s. Ben Patterson, Jack Brown, Leyton Bowen and Emma Young all knocked roughly 40s off their previous best. Not content with one PB, Gary Stroud and Jennifer Scott completed their hatrick of PBs this week, whilst Claire Ashwell made it five PBs in the last five weeks! Also earning permission to engage smug mode were John Aitchison and Fiona Trinder who made it four PBs in their last four appearances at Tring, with Richard Caseley capping it all off with six PBs in the last six times he’s ran here at Tring Park. Nice work everyone!

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Lesley was visiting from South Africa and was keen to join us but had no car. Katrina stepped in and offered her a lift. GREAT parkrun spirit.

A few stats and name news to finish off our report this week:
• Greg Mitchell becomes the 76th person to run 76 times at Tring. Clearly they like this stat in the family as wife Juliet was the 54th to run 54, the 58th to run 58 and the 62nd to run 62
• James & Paul were the most seen names with 9 each whilst Lucy and Sarah were the most seen females with 4 each
• We saw the most ever Dominics (4) and Jacks (3)
• We saw the names Katerina, Marika, Bruno, Evangeline, Ellis and Rickey for the 1st time
• We saw the name Mary for the 50th time and Helen for the 400th
• We saw the following surnames for the 50th time – Desouza, Fisher, Hollier, Stevens and Clutton
• Waddesdon Running and the Elvet Striders both ran with us for the first time.

As ever I’ve had a look through the results to find an aesthetically pleasing time of the week and, unusually, I’m truly spoilt for choice! Having already been given plenty of praise at the start of this report I won’t be awarding it to Andy Evans in spite of his very pleasing 54:32. Likewise Andrew Booth and Chris Blackwell were possible contenders and receive special commendation for their joint time of 32:10. However, this week’s prize goes to Phillipa Storr who not only ran a nice looking time of 31:31, but did so in parkrun 231, ie: 2 31s. Very pleasing indeed.

As I mentioned earlier, our parkrun relies on the support of the community around it in order to go ahead. If you’d like to volunteer (feel good factor and fun almost certainly guaranteed), just drop us an e-mail at tringoffice@parkrun.com and we will happily induct you into the hi-vis club (secret handshake optional).

Harry

For news and photos don’t forget to visit our Facebook page at www.facebook.com/tringparkrun and you can also follow us on Instagram as “Tring parkrun” and Twitter at www.twitter.com/tringparkrun

If you would like to keep up to date with all the happenings in parkrunworld, look no further than the two parkrun podcasts available to download each week. “With Me Now”, hosted by Danny Norman and Nicola Forward is an independent parkrun podcast from the hosts of the old parkrun show, whilst “Free Weekly Timed” is an official parkrun podcast hosted by Vassos Alexander and Louise Ayling.

 

Tring 230 – Inspiration, Levitation and Perspiration

 

Inspiration

Both Tring parkrun and our very own Wes Ball got several great mentions on Ed Milliband and Geoff Llyod's excellent podcast "Reasons to be cheerful". We were hoping Ed would join us in Tring for his first parkrun but (perhaps sensibly) he opted for a local one instead. You can hear their great account of parkrun in general and also one of the best interviews I've heard with parkrun's CEO Nick Pearson. Click on the image below or here to listen to "Born to (park)run - Geoff and Ed's Excellent Adventure".

Born to (park)run

 
If you subscribe to the weekly parkrun email you will have noticed we were featured twice in parkrun's new training guide. In the first of a four part series "hill training" was highlighted and where better than our very "undulating" park? For those with a new year resolution to improve your parkrun pace you can find the article here (or click on the picture below).

Hill Training

 

On the topic of new year resolutions, it seems that more than ever have resolved to attend parkrun in 2019. Across the world we saw a surge of participants after new year and this weekend saw further huge increases Click here to see more about UK records. You can zoom into the map and click on Tring for a summary of our event.

 

Levitation

On the topic of attendance records, Saturday was the first time ever we've had more than 300 parkrunners three weeks in a row.

It will be interesting to see how much we've been helped by the dry and relatively mild weather. I've been walking and running in Tring Park for 30 years and can't recall ever seeing the paths so mud free in mid January. Next weekend (Jan 19th) is due to be freezing cold and the week after has heavy snow forecast - it will be interesting to see if our numbers remain high.

In preparation for the anticipated wintery conditions some have been practicing the art of floating over the expected mire rather than plodding through it.

float
Inspired levitation at the Summer House, mid parkrun, by Dom Evans

 
No less bestowed with magical powers were our lighter than air volunteers this week, thank you to Marcia QUINN, Liz DANIEL, Gary EVANS, Mary WARD, Richard ALCOCK, Robert ALCOCK, Trevor LARK, Patrick MCLOUGHLIN, Michael WARD, Tom BROOKES, Izzy BROOKES, Harry BROOKES, Jos BARTLETT, Andrew POWELL, Oliver WEST, Thomas PAGE, Ciara POWELL, Isobel MONK, Greg LEFF, Anna HANSON, Robert NORRIS, Frances LEFF and Howie BECK.

Special thanks, in particular, to Howie and Ciara who have completed their Duke of Edinburgh volunteer stints - we really appreciate all of the help, magical or otherwise.

Now if we can just find a way to levitate all of our parkrun kit it would save a lot of early Saturday morning huffing and puffing.

And while we're at it, a magical and foolproof way to process our results would be welcome too! Our high numbers have compounded the usual little trip-ups. I'm well aware that at the busiest time, despite two people on finish tokens, it was impossible to hand them out fast enough and that the mouth of the finish funnel got very backed up. Sorry about that! We've had a meeting of the committee and we've passed a resolution - next week will make a few more changes to the shape and length of the funnel etc. to improve things. Additional measures include using drones to hunt down Funnel Duckers and make them run the entire course again! Twice! :-)

 

Perspiration

Lots of great efforts and large amounts of energy expended this week across the board, including by our 14 first time parkrunners: Juliet PENALIGGON, Mark WILLIAMS, Amber PENALIGGON, Grant NEWMAN, Richard MURRAY, Sarah BRIDGE, Mark PARKINS, Roddy TAYLOR, Jackie SHEPHERD, Deborah LEA, Jacob LEA, Ian STACEY, Graham CAMPBELL and Christine DENNIS. Welcome to them all.

This week we celebrated four parkrunners reaching important milestones. Congratulations to:

  • Kirstie NEWMAN who reached the lofty height of 100 parkuns and "wins" a covetted black parkrun T-shirt.
  • Ann-Marie EVANS and Charlie Scott who both reached their 50th parkruns and will be rewarded with red parkrun T-shirts.
  • And Oliver IRESON completed his 10th, with a PB too, and earns a white T-shirt.

 

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Anne-Marie was one of four runners this week reaching an important milestone

We also had another PB-fest. In total 58 people recorded Personal Best times. It's worth taking a closer look....

  • It was really great to see ALL of our new runners (those that started at Tring this year, who also ran on Saturday) get a PB: Ian WHITING, Charlotte UTTING, Chris BALL, Mike HOLDROYD and Leah HOLDROYD. Great stuff.
  • And a special mention to Gavin BASHFORD, Marcus DAVIS, Charles ASHWELL who joined us in the Christmas period and also got PBs.
  • Streaks of PBs take some doing and so a special "well done" and congratulations to Moira DOUGLAS for her 5th successive PB.
  • Also on PB streaks were Claire ASHWELL (4 in 4) and 2 in 2 for Christopher IRESON, Christophe BEVAN, Emily SCOTT, Brian McGINNITY, Gary STROUD, Matthew SKELDING, Jennifer SCOTT, Millie WELLER, Oliver IRESON and Patrick McLOUGHLIN.
  • In addition we saw 5PBs in his last 5 appearances for Richard CASELEY, 3 in 3 for Charlotte BAILEY, Shane CHEUNG and Fiona TRINDER.
  • Alice WRIGHT set a new SW20-24 all time record, beating her own PB by 24 seconds. Congratulations - what a great result
  • Of those who have run 5+ times at Tring, the biggest improvers were Enid FLEETWOOD (1:55), Moira DOUGLAS (1:47), Thierry CHAUSSALET (1:31), Rachel STANLEY (1:28), Millie WELLER (1:13). That's impressive!
  • Both of our first finishers recorded PBs too. Seb BRUMMELL with a time of 19:52 and Alice WRIGHT who knocked 24 seconds off her last PB set on New Years Day

 

4 days
Amanda was the first person in history to accumulate 4 solid days of Tring parkrun time!!

This week we really do have an eye-opening "random stat":

  • Amanda RUSSELL becomes the 1st person, who if all her parkruns were a continuous event, would have spent 4 days running with us. In total 14 have passed 3 days, 49 have passed 2 days and138, 1 day.
  • We saw the surname Myatt for the 200th time, Fleming and Jones for the 100th, Bryant, Killin, Lloyd-Evans and Deverall-Roberts all for the 50th but it was Evans with 6 that we saw most of on Saturday.
  • The 1st time we have seen 3 Noahs, 2 Jacobs and 2 Juliets and the 1st time we have seen the name Roddy.
  • Minute 26 was the busiest minute with 31 runners which was a record for Minute 26. (It felt like 131!)
  • We saw the Beccles and Bungay Harriers club for the 1st time.

And so there you have it for another week.

Look out your thermals for the weeks ahead!!

The Tring parkrun team

 

PS

You can find out more about Tring parkrun and see all of our photographs and videos on our Facebook page here.

You can see our current volunteer roster here.

We encourage all parkrunners to volunteer a few times a year. If you can help on any future date, or would like to find out more about our volunteer and helper roles, please email us at tringhelpers@parkrun.com.

We now have two excellent parkrun podcasts available each week. "Free Weekly Timed" is the official parkrun podcast with Vassos Alexander and Louise Ayling. We also have "With Me Now" with Danny Norman and Nicola Forwood which is an independent parkrun-based podcast.

 
 

PPS

tring course
Tring's winter course described in a single picture.
Thanks to Andy for the spot!

 
 
 
 
 
 

 

2018: A year in the life of Tring parkrun

 

Thank you for another amazing Tring parkrun year

What a fantastic year 2018 was for the Tring parkrun community: 54 parkrun events, 12296 individual parkruns, 1352 volunteer roles filled, an immeasurable number of new friendships forged, and many wonderful memories created.

It's been quite a journey, these last twelve months.

  • We've endured the extremes of the seasons - mud, snow, rain, wind, heat and parched earth.
  • We've run four different versions of our weekly 5k course.
  • We've witnessed multiple milestones being set and records falling a plenty.
  • We've had cake, dressing-up, musical marshals, bovine antics, special occasions and more cake.
  • We avoided being embroiled in egg-gate but couldn't avoid cow-magedon.

 

snow summer heat and flowers
Tring parkrunners turned out every single weekend without fail, regardless of the weather.

We've continued to grow and involve more people of all ages and abilities throughout the year. Even in the depths of winter our lowest number was 139 (see the March write-up) and our maximum was an amazing 353 reached on the very first day of the year!

 

Tring parkrun 2018 as seen by the amazing stat-o-matic (part 1)

Throughout the year Event Director Andy Evans' trusty PC has whirred and chugged and fascinated us with the most obscure of stats, facts and figures. We can therefore add a bit of colour to the attendance numbers above.

In the table below you can see our growth over the last full four years. Last year we grew by 10% and averaged an amazing 228 parkrunners each week. This is all the more impressive considering that wonderful Wendover parkrun, just a few km away, has started during this period too.

Total numbers compared

Looking at the age profile for the barcoded runners in a typical week, the numbers for those aged under 40 have stayed broadly the same whereas the over-40s have increased by 20% (see table below). We see much the same with parkrun-club/T-shirts that our runners qualified for, with the proportion of new runners staying much the same whilst the average proportion of 50 and particularly 100-club members continues to grow.

age profiles compared

Perhaps not surprisingly our average run time continues to increase (a trend seen across parkrun as a whole) - which is good. In 2015 the average time was 29:25, it rose to 30:03 and further to 30:42 in 2016/17 and last year grew to 30:47. As an aside this is 2 minutes 16 seconds slower than the UK parkrun average - a reflection of the effort required to tackle our hills.

Further evidence of our growing maturity is that the number of new runners, visitors and PBs are all quite static but the growth is in regular running without the elusive PB.

maturity compared

And while we are on the topic of PBs.....where, during the year, were they earned?

PB distribution

Early summer and September were (as is usually the case) the best PB months. December did not see much of a drop-off in part because our temporary winter course is a bit faster and also because compared to previous years most of December has been quite dry. (2019 is likely be very different because of the dry conditions experienced so far - in fact we equalled the total number of 2018 January PBs in one week alone).

 

Month by month, season by season.

The following is a quick whizz through the year. You can click on the title of each month for a shortcut to the actual run write-ups.

January - a BIG start to the year.
We had a 10:30 start on January 1st and were joined by an amazing 353 parkrunners (our second highest number ever). Many were "doing the double" from Aylesbury (96), Gadebridge (46), Ellenbrook (2) and Cassiobury (1).

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It was muddy but many seemed to quite like that - Lucy and William being two fine examples!

Apart from that January was generally wet and muddy and a real trial for many a New Year resolution! Amazingly we had quite a lot of visitors join us because it was muddy. Seasoned XC runners loved it, the kids loved it, actually it wasn't too bad.

However not everyone agreed entirely, as words from the RD's write-ups showed. From Wes: “Wow, what a morning. Now I quite like volunteering, but even the most diehard of hi-vis wearing hero was probably thinking ‘It’s pretty wet and cold out here mind'". And from Anna: "I am sure I speak for lots of us when I say thank goodness for the end of January"!
 
February - Mother Nature has a laugh.
Frankly February didn’t start much better, although later in the month we had some very pleasant mornings, pleasant enough for the dreaded, fate-tempting "maybe it'll be a short winter after all" thoughts to spring to mind!!

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Our milestone runners on run 181 were feeling the temperatures rising, and their hopes of the end of winter with it - wrong!!!

There's not much more to be said about February than that, really!
 
March - Did somebody say “British Summer Time?”
Blam!!
The "Beast from the East" arrived dramatically at the start of the month and the vast majority (almost 90%) of parkruns in the UK were cancelled. An intrepid advance party (Richard, Ken, Andy C and John Manning) braved the elements on the evening of Friday March 2nd and again on Saturday morning with the conclusion "it's OK - let's do it"!

Unfortunately many roads were impassable and thwarted the efforts of dozens to get to Tring Park. 139 runners and 20 volunteers did make it and - although hard going in places where the snow was deep - they were rewarded with a parkrun in the most magical, snowy landscape.

KCR in the snow
King Charles Ride in the snow.

Of course all of the melting snow (on top of a layer of iced ground) then turned to even more mud. The path from Gate 1 to King Charles Ride shamed even the toughest of Tough Mudder obstacles.

tree assist windmill hands
March was a muddy experience - but still fun!

By the end of the month we got British Summer Time. It sure didn't feel like it.
 
April - When RDs become Weather Gods.
April saw the most amazing transition. Winter vanished, flowers blossomed (tentatively at first) and by the end of the month the fabled 2018 heatwave had started - a meteorological occurrence that Chris Millar took full responsibility for in his mid April run report. And I quote: "it’s 6 months since I was run director and it feels like just as long since we had weather this nice at Tring parkrun. Coincidence? I think not." LOL!

IMG_3833
Spring flowers appeared within sight of the start line.

Temperatures were way above seasonal norms. No one was complaining. The park really started to come to life and before we knew it T-shirts and shorts were broken out for the first time in months, even for the relatively static finish line volunteers.

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It was great to see volunteers and runners alike in shorts and T-shirts and Tring Park blossoming fast.

May - A new course
May was stunning! The headline for the first run report was simply "Scorchio". Spring was in the air and the park was a delight. A week before the Royal Wedding we had our own special event - the coronation of our new course. To comply with a request from the land owners we moved the start/finish away from the Lime Tree Avenue. The reward was an even hillier Tring parkrun, dropping first into the valley before a long, long climb. The volunteers did a great job both of managing the new route and a new herd of young and very inquisitive cattle.

spring leaves
A fast blossoming Tring Park was looking stunning in the Spring sunshine.

brilliant sunny start
The start line on the Lime Tree Avenue looked brilliant.

At the end of May the cows had got used to us (or bored by us), we were used to the new course and even a (now uncharacteristic) shower did nothing to dampen another great month in Tring Park.

temporary rain shelter
We discovered a new use for our trusty blue tarps during late May showers

 
June - Events, Milestones and Celebrations.
June was a big month for events: we joined the NHS70 celebrations, marked "This Girl Can" weekend, celebrated our 200th run and also the 250th parkrun of Run Director Harry Bryant.

The NHS run saw many outstanding costumes (including a buggy converted into a hospital bed, complete with IV drip - read/see more here) and was great fun.

We then marked "This Girl Can" with an almost entirely female volunteer team and a guest write-up from regular Tring parkrunner Philippa Storr. I love her introduction...
 
This girl didn’t think she could...
...even get to the finish line when I had to be dragged, crying, up Heartbreak Hill on my first ever parkrun.
...ever go sub-30 minutes.
…ever truly, hand on heart, say she enjoyed the first kilometre.
…ever get to 100 parkruns.
…ever be made to feel so welcomed and encouraged by such a great bunch of people.
But this girl, just an ordinary girl, can!

Thank you Philippa.
 

Congratulations to Harry
It was fantastic to see Harry, flanked by friends and family, complete his 200th parkrun.

Our own milestone was to hold our 200th parkrun. We ran the course in reverse to make the occasion. We also experienced a bit of cross-parkrun love. Great Notely parkrun created an MDF 200 sign for their own a few weeks before, since then it has travelled all over the UK and Ireland to other 200 anniversaries.

Katie 200
Run Director Katie with the "wandering 200 sign"

You know we like our stats on this page and one from that 200th anniversary deserves special mention. Chris PARKER was at our 200th to run his 7th parkrun - and finished with a time of 20.07. How cool is that?
 
July - Cowmagedon, was it the heat?
July was HOT. We had our warmest ever parkruns - more than once finishing in temperatures nearer 30 than 20 by just 10am. The Park started to look more like the African savannah. Cows and volunteers alike were actively seeking shade by the end of several events.

At the start of the month (run 201, 7th July) Tring parkrun was honoured by an air force team from Halton carrying the RAF100 Baton as it neared the end of a relay round the UK to mark their centenary.

RAF baton team
The RAF team joined on the hottest parkrun ever at Tring

Looking African
Tring Park looking more like African Savannah

We had our own "fake moos" incident too. After weeks of staying well clear the Tring Park cattle decided that the 28th July was the day to "play" with our brand new poles and markers! They got shouted at!! Have you ever seen a herd of cows look sheepish?

cowmagedon

 
August - Clubs and YOPA visit.
The heat abated in August, but it was still warm and the Park still parched. The month got off to a flying start with Pacer week that coincided with Tring Running Club using us as part of their Off Road Championships and we were also visited by groups from both the Harpenden Arrows and Garden City Runners, so numbers were relatively high for the vacation season.

August Pacers
A great Pacer team, sporting our lovely new blue pacer bibs

During the year we were visited my several members of local councils, who have been very supportive of us and parkrun in general. Towards the end of the month the mascot of Hertfordshire's "Year of Physical Activity" (YOPA) paid us a visit and was great fun.

YOPA visits
YOPA donned a hi-viz vest and joined the week's brilliant volunteers.

 
September - Families, cake and a new course record.
With the kids back at school and the weather being "PB friendly" we saw lots of families out running together and lot's of new records too. Run 213 at the end of the month saw 48 PBs and an amazing new course record of just 16:21 set by Kristian JONES (and, yes, on the flat he's nearly 2 minutes faster than that!).

Millie PB
A great start to "PB month".
Millie, just ahead of proud mum, ran a PB time that improved by almost 3 mins

Looking back through the run reports it's notable how often cake gets a mention and the 22nd of Sep was a fine example. Lynda Hembury (our course age-category record holder) completed her 100th parkrun and her daughter baked special cakes to celebrate. They looked too good to eat, but we did eat them - and they tasted even better!

Cake - parkrun loves cake
Lynda Hembury's daughter, Hannah, baked the most wonderful cakes for everyone to enjoy

 
October - Our world of Interpretive Dance.
We’ve had many great run reports including Andy Evan's April 1st classics, write-ups featuring Winnie the Pooh, Star Wars, Spaced out Bovines and more. We've even had a report written by Andy Colling's Dog. Wes Ball however upped the bar not once but twice during the month.

Video run report
Click on the image to see Wes' great video run write-up

"National Album Day" (who knew?) coincided with parkrun 215 and Wes brilliantly incorporated the titles of his favourite 47 albums into the write-up "What's the story?".

In jest we challenged him to do the next as "a video run report in the form of interpretive dance". And he did!!!!!!! Fantastic stuff!

Halloween
The end of October brings Halloween and, as usual, we had a spooktacular array of fancy dress.

 
November - 4th birthday and Autumnal days.
At the start of the month we celebrated our 4th birthday with prize giving and (surprise) more cake! There was a lot to celebrate this month and of special note was Ron Yaxley reaching his 100th parkrun. He only came along one week to keep his granddaughter company when her parents were away.....and has been a regular attendee ever since.

team Yaxley/Bladen
The youngest member of the Bladen family with grandfather Ron Yaxley.
He completed his 100th on the same day they reached a collective 500!

Tring Park was also in the process of hunkering down for winter and looked spectacular in its autumnal colours. Of course winter brings mud and (as you saw in the March section above) the prospect of a challenge up through the trees above "Gate 1".

This is an area of Special Scientific Interest and until such time as they can figure out what to do with that path in the winter the Woodland trust asked us to not run there. So we devised a temporary "out and back" route along the ancient Ridgeway with a killer first hill! It would get its first airing earlier than expected after the days of heavy rain at the end of the month.

tring park autumn
Yet again Tring Park was looking glorious, with our pregnant cows softly munching on the autumnal hillside.

 
December - Hoots and routes.
The first week of December was a bit miserable weather wise - it coincided with our first use of our temporary winter course and our mad celebration of St Andrews Day - the "Tring kilted parkrun". It was great to see so many regular Tring parkrunners and visitors decked in tartan and anything else vaguely Scottish (inflatable bagpipes even!!)

Och 1 Och 2
Just two great examples of the effort so many went to for the kilted parkrun. Thank you Kevin and Len.

Later in December, of course, we had our festive runs, including our extra on Christmas Day itself. As with other special events the turn out of runners in fancy dress and costumes was a wonder to behold.

 

Tring parkrun 2018 as seen by the amazing stat-o-matic (part 2)

Let's finish off with another rummage in Tring parkrun's databanks. We've seen (in part 1 above) how our numbers have grown and changed over 4 years. The following table and chart show the proportion that, through the year as a whole, completed 5,10, 20, 30, 40 or more parkruns at Tring.

How many how often

While the numbers running 30+ times stayed static we saw a large growth in those running 10-30 times. Given that our numbers are rising steadily what could be the reasons for this? We're not quite sure but it's likely that "parkrun tourism" might have something to do with it.....we see more people, with Tring as their "home run", travelling to and enjoying parkruns elsewhere in the UK and the world!

How many how often chart

There was a time when running clubs weren't quite sure what to make of parkrun. Now most clubs have seen their numbers grow as parkrunners have "got the running bug" and/or want the opportunity to run with others mid week. We have a great relationship with the very friendly and welcoming Tring Running Club (TRC). They, in turn, now included Tring parkrun as part of their annual "offroad championship" series of runs in 2018 and have their own parkrun tourism group too.

clubs compared

The table above shows how many parkruns were run by each club. On the Run Aylesbury jumped from 8th to 4th, Bearbrook entered the top 3 and Shires Triers and DofE were new entries to the Top10.
A weekly stat-o-matic favourite is the names-game!

Looking first at surnames - it was the first year that Evans hasn't topped the table with an overtaking manoeuvre by Bladen on the last parkrun of the year. New names to enter the Top 10 include Williams, Roberts, Hanson and Storr.

names compared

For Male first names it's Paul that has taken the lead and James replaces Richard in the top 3. Mark and Tom are new entries into the Top10.

Male first names

For females, Helen has just overtaken Sarah and Isobel has replaced Louise in the top 3. New entries into the Top10 include Lucy, Charlotte and Emma.

female first names

With Claire becoming a mum at the end of 2018, Scarlett took over with the highest number of fastest runs. Chris being away at uni meant that it was a close lead for Tom and Matthew. As for Age Grade % Lynda had an impressive lead.

Speedy times

 

Stopwatch Bingo has become "a thing" with the followers of parkrun's unofficial challenges. How many different seconds did you tick off in 2018? See the tables below for the top results at Tring in 2018 and previous years.

stopwatch bingo 2018 stopwatch bingo all years
On the left: seconds "earned" in 2018,
on the right the seconds recorded across all years

We're quite impressed by these. It takes on average 281 parkruns to complete StopWatch Bingo. Louise is seriously challenging the laws of probability - she has only 1 to go and had completed "only" 182 parkruns at the end of 2018. Will she be the first to see all 60? Or will she have to wait 2 years for the elusive missing second!!
 
Onto "Steady Eddies", those who ran 20 or more in the year and have the least variance in their times compared to their 2018 average pace. The Lower the % the more consistent the times. We're impressed by these too - well done to all.

steady eddies

 

And so that brings us to the end of our review of 2018.
 
What a great year, thank you all for helping make Tring parkrun a happy place on Saturday mornings.

 
The Tring parkrun team

 
 
 
 
 
 

 

Tring parkrun #229 in numbers

Despite the cold weather, it was great to see so many of you this weekend!

229
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We’ve been putting together a bumper “2018 round up” which will be out soon – so here in the meantime is a quick 1-2-3 of what happened at Tring parkrun #229. Well to be honest there were so many of you today we needed a few more numbers, and these reports just tend to grow, but you get the idea……

1 – Welcome to Abbie - the 1st time we’ve seen this name at Tring

2 – Paul Christie was 1 second too fast for this line with 22:21

3 – Ann Brewer was 1 second too fast for this line with 33:32

4 – It’s 4 PBs in 4 weeks for Moira Douglas – powering around the course with her Nordic poles. 3 in 3 for Claire Ashwell, 2 in 2 for David Barnett, Rachel Barnett, Benjamin Smith and Rob Firth.

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4PBs in 4 weeks - well done Moira!

5 – Thanks to the 5 marshals out on course

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Unfortunately the 1st 5 Marshals of the Soviet Union didn't volunteer this week - but luckily Heather, Frances, Robert, Alison and Jim did - thanks all

6 - Of those who have run 5+ times at Tring, the 6 biggest improvers were Mollie Rees (3:02), Barney Hooks (2:43), Mille Weller (1:44), Rachael Macrea (1:34), Keith & Nuala Farquharson (1:17)

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Mollie on her way to the day's biggest PB improvement

6 - A mention for Sarah Hooper who has recorded 6 PBs in her last 6 appearances, Bobby Donnelly and Eddy Haddock recorded 4 in 4, Martin Donnelly and John Aitchison 3 in 3

7 – 7 Tring RC runners managed to finish in a sequence in our results - one after the other

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By a strange coincidence the American army in Korea predicted this stat by naming their radio the "TRC-7"

10 – Junior 10 - William Ireson earns his white shirt

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Well done William on earning your "10" shirt

14 – Well done to the 14 running their 1st ever parkrun

25 - Minute 25 was the busiest minute with 25 runners. Minute 27 also had 25 runners but that doesn’t match as nicely

26 – Of today’s runners, Helen Page has the longest continuous streak of Tring parkruns with 26 – which puts her 10th on the list of longest continuous streaks.

50 – Louise Quinn managed to run her 50th parkrun on her 50th birthday! Happy birthday Louise! We were so impressed with this stat that parkrun HQ have agreed that she can have a red shirt with her age printed on it! The next time Louise will be able to repeat a similar feat is  in 2030 if she only does 11 parkruns in the next 11 years!

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Well done Louise on running your 50th and Happy Birthday too!

76 PBs —A stunning number of PBs – our joint 2nd highest haul – we have had to search the record books to the heady season of April 2017 as our mud dried out and we saw 76 and then 107 PBs in successive weeks. This alternative winter course is proving to be as fast as our summer course – so are you up for 107 PBs next week?

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76 PBs! - a great total - in fact so impressive that this Dutchman has bought a new numberplate to celebrate!

100 - Well done to Trevor Lark for running his 100th . We would just like to point out Trevor is much younger than the shirt that parkrun HQ will issue him. It was also the 200th time we have seen the name Trevor!

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Trevor (in white top) on way to his 100th - well done Trevor!

100% - Our year 5 100% club is getting down to the hard core 7 – after 12 runs since our birthday it’s 12 out of 12 for Helen Page, Holly Bunn, Isobel Bladen, Louise Bladen, Luciana Walker, Peter Leigh and Steve Bladen but it’s Emma Young who is so far the PB Princess with 6 PBs in those 12 weeks!

100 - We saw the name Leybourne for the 100th time at Tring and Williams was the most common name on the day with a count of 6. And another mention for Mrs Leybourne, it was the 50th time we have seen the name Tamsin, as well as the 300th time for the name Adam and also the 50th for Iain.

1-2-3 - Had Ken Douglas finished 1-2-3rd on his 1-2-3rd parkrun that would have fitted in really nicely with this numeric run report but as he finished 124th it’s probably not worth mentioning, although well done Ken on your fastest run for a couple of years

312 - Another big turnout - Our joint 4th highest attendance, following our 3rd highest on Tuesday.

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312 tokens to sort back in order

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Join 50+ of your parkrun family for a post run coffee and natter

See you all again next week,
Andy E

 

Tring 228 – New Year’s Day plus the double plus the double plus

 

Happy New Year everyone

Tring parkrun wishes you all the very best for 2019

If our first parkrun of the year had been a firework it would have been one of those huge starbursts that go "BOOOOM!"

Despite our non-traditional, early start we enjoyed our third largest turnout ever - an amazing 344 people. At least 79 of these were first timers and many had already driven quite a distance to be with us. Impressive dedication.

I enjoyed chatting to a few folks who had driven up from (flat) Marlow, arriving to do the (very hilly) Tring/Wendover double but there were so many people at Wendover (more on that later) that I didn't get the chance to see how they got on.

It was also really lovely to see our current female course record holder Claire HALLISSEY with her beautiful new baby, Brandon, who is just 2 weeks old. They came to say hello and, small though he is, I'm pretty sure I saw Brandon eyeing up the Lime Tree Avenue and thinking - "maybe mum will give me a very fast push down there later in the year!!" :-)

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Chris Booth led this weeks pack from start to finish.

Conditions were surprisingly good: it was mild, dry, still, and "Cow Pat Ally" was thankfully not an assault course hazard. This helped an impressive 42 ("the answer to the question......") people record Personal Bests.

Among them was first finisher Chris Booth (back in home territory after university) who posted an impressively symmetrical time of 18:18. I might have been still more impressed if he'd posted a time of 19:19 or, better still, 20:19! And if Steve Oglesby had contrived to be just 2 seconds slower he'd have recorded 20:19 and won this week's prize for the coolest time (if not this year's!!)!

Chris went to to be second finisher at Wendover with an even faster time of 17:41!

On the topic of which 200 people ran BOTH at Tring and Wendover (doing "the double"). Of these, roughly 25 ran between the courses and approx half a dozen biked it (doing "the double plus"). Several started at Wendover or Tring and effectively did a Half Marathon loop. See pic below!!! We also had runners "do a double" with Cassiobury and Houghton Hall.

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Our very own Chris Millar ran from Wendover to Tring, did Tring parkrun (his 50th there, with a course PB), then ran back to Wendover and did Wendover parkrun (also with a PB).
He is convalescing at home and has asked that people do not send flowers and that the press respects his privacy.

 

Coming back to Wendover. Wow! If we were a starburst that goes boom, they were an entire fireworks display to eclipse London's. Excluding the recent "parkrun tourist excursion" (which set their previous attendance record) FIVE times more than normal people turned up. An incredible 460 parkrunners stress tested the Forestry Commission's parking system (!!) and very nearly the parkrun system too (our normal timers only go up to 500 and Wendover's highest plastic finish token was 440). We acknowledge and are thankful for the Wendover team's heroic efforts. Safe to say the New Year Day Double (NYDD) has become "a thing"!

I know we say this every week, but our volunteers over "the holidays" were stars. Several gave up the opportunity to "do the double" and stepped up because we were shorthanded. Everyone of them deserves our special thanks. The setup team, the marshals (thanks for the Scottish refrains at the Obelisk, Jim) our Finish Line Team and Tail Walkers and the Post-Event team who had everything packed and cleared in the blink of an eye. Last but not least was Andy Evans our RD - who managed a run at Wendover and processed the results on our temporary computer.

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Just some of the 26 volunteers that made our morning happen: Andy EVANS • Tom NORTH • Clive COHEN • Emma BISGROVE • Louise QUINN • Emma SMITH • Anna FRYER • Samuel FRYER • Gary EVANS • Ken DOUGLAS • James MAPLE • Katrina BOND • Stuart PAGE • Annemarie DE BOOM • Louise BROOKES • Greg MITCHELL • Juliet MITCHELL • Chris NICHOLLS • Joseph FRYER • Andrew POWELL • Markus KINCH • Ros EVENSON • Nika JACKSON-MOORE • Neil ADCOCK • Heather PAINTER • Shane CHEUNG

 

It was a special day to run a milestone parkrun, especially if doing the double. (It does make it tricky figuring out the details from the results page though).

  • Edward MARGETTS and Julie PARRY both had a fantastic start to their year with a 50 milestone at Tring.
  • Tim FOWLER and Nick BALDING also ran their 50th at Tring and went on to their 51st at Wendover.
  • Steve ALLEN and Nigel WIGGINS ran their 49th at Tring and followed up with a 50th at Wendover. What a way to start the year!
  • Rebecca WHITWORTH ran her 100th at Tring and went on to 101 at Wendover as did Paul BOLTON.
  • Helen PAGE marked her 99th at Tring and her 100th at Wendover.

Congratulations to them all.
 

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You can see a "flyby" video of Tring, Wendover and the run between of those on Strava by clicking on the map above.

 

As usual we have a feast of stats to shed further light on the morning:

  • First timer Glen STILLMAN crossed the line in 36th position and became our 40,000 finisher. In doing so he also became the first (and only) person to have brought the total distance run at Tring parkrun to 200,000km!
  • James REPPER (2nd finisher) - 3PBs in 3 appearances, in 3 different years!
  • Alice WRIGHT (first female finisher) - PB on her first visit here since mid-2017.
  • Andy COLLINGS - first PB since mid 2015 and he went on to another PB at Wendover too!
  • Deirdre HEYDECKER - first PB since mid 2015
  • Hortense SEED, Andy BELL, Gayle WILLINGTON, Fiona TRINDER, Matt ASHMEAD and Sarah ASHMEAD all recorded 2PBs in 2 appearances at Tring.
  • Claire ASHWELL, Ffion WEBSTER and Tracy WEBSTER all recorded 2PBs in 2 straight Tring parkruns.
  • I'm especially happy to say that Moira DOUGLAS recorded her 3rd straight PB with a fantastic time, nordic walking.
  • NOTE: More will be published here later after the stat-o-matic has whirred out its results!

 

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Some even celebrated a birthday too on New Years Day. Many happy returns.

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No idea wwhat's going on here. But I liked the pic! :-)

 

That's it for this week. Back to normality on Saturday the 5th.

And we'll publish our promised "Tring parkrun review of 2018" at the weekend too.

Best wishes for 2019

The Tring parkrun team