Wimbledon Common parkrun report: event 614 August 11 2018



The great and the good

Fewer than 0.2% of the UK population are parkrunners. Not very many. Consequently, many who don’t run think we’re heroes. The growing national obsession with getting leaner and fitter, and the consensus that among the recommended methods of doing so, running isn’t an easy option, add fuel to this notion. The reasons why we’re parkrunners are, of course, many and varied. Nevertheless, to get up early on a Saturday morning, venture into the fresh air and run in all weathers, is seen as commendable.


Those among us

Even if we’re not all heroes, there are those among us we can rightly applaud as milestones are celebrated. This week we had a bonanza. A rare (unprecedented?) double handover of the 200 Collins Cup, and ladies equivalent, to Keith Macintosh and Kylie Corso, junior Gilbert Dunleavy on his 10th run looked pleased as punch, and Nicola Whitford achieved an impressive score of 450 runs. Nicola has the unique distinction of having a corner named after her, is part of the volunteer coordination team and all her recorded 450 runs have been on the Common. Kylie, apart from 200 runs, has volunteered 140 times in just five years and carries out invaluable work behind the scenes coordinating volunteers. Keith’s running achievements could fill an entire news report. Just to mention a few, Keith has been first into the funnel at our parkrun 11 times, as well as 13 times at other parkruns. His marathon PB is 2:36:11 and he has finished first in eight marathons including Nepal and Afghanistan. Keith also supports and fundraises for charities in some of the poorest and most remote areas on the planet. Sounds heroic to me. Finally, a word for Richard McDowell who finished fourth in 17:52 pushing a buggy and at the same time also doing some maths lessons for his child on the way around – “that’s 1k done, how many more to go?”

Keith ↑ and Kylie ↓ receiving their 200 cups


From start to finish

We kicked off with this week’s Run Director, the self-proclaimed bossy Francesca Carter (above), making a good job of keeping everyone quiet during her briefing, before heralding everyone off to the hornet-course start. From what I heard, the hornet course seems to be growing in popularity, but you do miss the opportunity for a good natter on the way to the start. Down at the sharp end, the swiftest gentlemen were Adam Harwood, Hercules Wimbledon AC, in a new PB time of 17:16, James Maloney, also with a PB time of 17:39 and Keith Macintosh, Wimbledon Windmilers, in 17:44. The fleetest ladies were: Andrea Stehlikova, Thames Hare & Hounds, in 21:41, Claire Adams, Clapham Chasers RC, in 22:38 and Sophie Russell, Wimbledon Windmilers, in 23:19. Top percentage scorers were: Gavin McLaughlan, Wimbledon Windmilers, 80.96%, Keith Macintosh, Wimbledon Windmlers, 79.32% and Damian Shirley, Highgate Harriers, 75.84%. In addition to our first two runners, 59 others knocked up a PB. And, as far as I could tell, 376 parkrunners headed off happily to enjoy the rest of the weekend. Some left the Common, while a goodly bunch of us headed for the café, there to enjoy the social side of parkrun and tuck into the delicious home-made goodies.

Volunteer sommelier Nick refreshes Kylie after her 200th run


All creatures great and small

While considering other Common users, and admiring those that buzz around it, let’s not forget the hornets. The hornet is the largest of the eusocial wasps. Their eusociality is the highest level of organisation of animal sociality, defined by the following characteristics: cooperative brood care (including care of offspring from other individuals), overlapping generations within a colony of adults, and a division of labour into reproductive and non-reproductive groups. That’s why you don’t see any hornets on the Jeremy Kyle Show.

Report John Carter ♦ Photography Stephen Willerton (start shot Maarten D'Haese)


Wimbledon Common parkrun – #613 – 4th August 2018


Just one Hornetto...

Another week, another WCp and not a cloud in the sky. The iconic Windmill looking resplendent...

Event 613 CS(5)

We were welcomed by this week’s Run Director Liam O’Hare - short and humorous. The briefing, I'm obviously referring to the briefing...

Event 613 CS(6)


This week we remained on Course Bee due to the hornets (I’ve waited weeks to be able to write that). Where better place to begin than at the end - 2 laps that are mainly the same, but in reverse, with a bite taken out to avoid having a bite taken out. To be honest I quite like the course this way round, although I’m sure it has its detractors.


Pants on the outside... but seriously this is a great photo, and there are loads more like this on our Flickr Page.



And on Wednesday as I submit this report I've had reports that the dust kicked up on the opening straight has just settled. In time for next week's parkrun...




Many were shouted out before the run but only two milestones were attained in the end - Nathan D’Haese joins the White 10 club, whilst Giselle Smith enters the Red 50 Club, with over half of those at Wimbledon Common.

No puddles to avoid always results in PBs, most notably for Brian Golden still knocking time off after 102 runs (only 2 seconds this time, but best time for nearly a year!).

If there were tourists this week then they were shy… eventually a cry of ‘Birmingham’ was coaxed from the crowd, although probably not Alabama. Many I expect were from our neighbours in Tooting whose run was cancelled this week.

This week 443 people ran, jogged and walked the course, of whom 53 were first timers and 55 recorded new Personal Bests. Representatives of 24 different clubs took part.



Parkrun is committed to remaining free and relies on the hard work of a group of volunteers to keep going. Thanks to this week’s 24 volunteers: Grace Caldwell, Peter Alasdair Fergus Collins, Terrie Anne Cowley, Christopher Cull, Steven Cull, Pierre Devitt, Sara Fabien, Mike Forder, Fiona Hamilton, Megan Hipkins, Stephen Johnson, Andrew Lenon, Ali Mafi, Jo Manley, Liam O'Hare, Sandy Pfeifer, Roger Reynolds, Andrew Rice, Deni Rubio, Clive Scammell, Jenny Small, Caroline Small, Annie Tosh, Graham Trainor, Karen Walsh and Graham White.


First Finishers

Adam Harwood of Hercules Wimbledon AC was first over the line in 17:23 (3s off his PB!). Clubmate David Lewin finished second in 17:34 and Gordon Walding of Herne Hill Harriers was third in 18:21.

Kate Brown of Herne Hill Harriers was first lady in 19:57 (19th overall). Lucy Woolhouse finished second in 20:18 (24th overall) and Louise Bell of Clapham Chasers RC was third in 20:40 (30th overall).


Age Gradings

This week’s best Age Grading was attained by Lucy Woolhouse with 89.16% for her time of 20:18.



Wimbledon Common parkrun started on 6th January 2007. Since then 20,265 participants have completed 157,833 parkruns covering a total distance of 789,165 km, including 24,955 new Personal Bests.

The female record is held by Justina Heslop who recorded a time of 16:33 on 17th March 2012 (event number 271).
The male record is held by Chris Parr who recorded a time of 15:04 on 23rd April 2011 (event number 224).

The Age Grade course record is held by Jane Davies who recorded 92.99% (21:24) on 29th January 2011 (event number 212).

This week’s full results and a complete event history can be found on the Wimbledon Common parkrun Results Page.

Your parkrun reporter - Andy Rice


Run the Royal Parks Half for Starfish…

We've received this communication from the Starfish Greathearts Foundation, a great charity to run for...

Dear Wimbledon Common parkrun,

Did you miss out on the ballot for the Royal Parks Half Marathon? Join the Starfish team!

Starfish have guaranteed places in Royal Parks Half Marathon 2018 on Sunday 14th October, and we are looking for runners to join the Starfish team and help us change lives. With your support Starfish can provide life saving healthcare, education and child protection to children orphaned or made vulnerable by HIV/AIDS in South Africa.

Royal Parks Half Marathon is one of the world’s biggest half marathons and with 16,000 runners taking part in the 13.1 mile run, it will be an exciting event for everyone involved.

Starting in Hyde Park, the route will take you on closed roads through four of London’s eight Royal Parks – Hyde Park, The Green Park, St James Park and Kensington Gardens.

As a part of a Starfish team, you will receive:

¶  A fundraising Pack including top tips and sponsorship forms

¶  Ongoing support and pre-event information

¶  A free Starfish branded running vest!

¶  And of course, cheering support on the event day and finish line refreshments

There is usually a £20 registration fee, but we will waive this for Wimbledon Common Park Run members! The fundraising target for each runner is £350 and your sponsorship will help Starfish provide lifesaving healthcare and education to vulnerable children in South Africa.

Registration ends 10th August, so sign up before it is too late! To register please email us ukinfo@starfishcharity.org or call the Starfish team on 0207 597 3797. We would really appreciate it if you could share this information with other members of your running club, and we are more than happy to send you some Royal Parks flyers as well.

Places are limited, don’t miss out!

Best wishes,


Ella Bannenberg


Wimbledon Common parkrun number 612, 28 July 2018

Rain, what rain? 





Holy moly

After the driest spell of weather for many years, the Heavens opened on Friday night – just in time for the start of the Wedding Day 7K in Bushy Park. Perhaps it was the influence of the venerable 'Father Onn' (see what they did there?) who was the race director.

This event was first run on Thursday 29 July 1981, which was a bank holiday marking the wedding day of Prince Charles and Diana, and it has been going strong ever since. This year it was attended by a large contingent of Wimbledon parkrun regulars and was a pleasant, if rather wet, jaunt along the flat paths of Bushy Park. The Harry and Meghan T-shirt we received at the end was a clever touch, highlighting this year’s big wedding day (see it below, modelled by Paul Tibbs).




Everyone's buzzed off

By the following morning it was dry again and the sun shone but conditions were cooler than recently and the overnight rained had dampened down the dust, which was a relief. This week 383 people turned out to run on the alternative, hornet-avoiding version of the course. That’s over 100 fewer than last week, even though the conditions were better – it must be the school-holiday effect (that or the hornets). Of those runners, 41 were first timers, 49 recorded new Personal Bests and there were tourists from as far away as Australia.


Keeping it in the family

It was a good week for milestones, particularly for the Hall family. David Hall ran his 250thparkrun while his son Alexander lifted the Collins Cup for his 200th run. Race director Peter Collins can be seen doing the honours below. Congratulations to David and Alexander. Costa Nicolaou (seen at the top of the page) celebrated his 50th run in style – love the balloon!






It's not about the times but...

First man over the line this week was Joe Phillips of Newport & District RC in 17:01 closely followed by Martin Rutter of Clapham Chasers in 17:05 – PBs for both of them. Third was David Lewin of Hercules Wimbledon in 17:28. Sixth over the line was Nick McKay who gives a fine demonstration of running form below – something for the rest of us to aspire to!





And the ladies

First woman this week was Wimbledon regular Lucy Woolhouse in 20:36 with an age grading of 87.86%, the highest of the day. She was followed by Lulu Weisz of Hercules Wimbledon in 21:45 and Vikki Filsell of Thames Hare and Hounds in 22:03.


Hot dog anyone?

Talking of hounds, In last week’s very hot weather, the RSPCA was advising dog-owners not to take their dogs out for walks after 7.30am. The cooler temperatures must have been a big relief to our furry friends at parkrun on Saturday. However, if you are running with your dog, please remember to keep it on a short lead.





The event was made possible by 22 volunteers: Simon CHEETHAM • Robert BEEBY • Andrew DARLING • Geraldine HELLINGS • Francesca CARTER • Ali MAFI • Helen BEEBY • Peter Alasdair Fergus COLLINS • Annette BARRETT • Chris ABELL • Caroline WEHRLE • Anne WALKER • Caroline HELDER • Karen WALSH • Sandy PFEIFER • Julia DONOVAN • Louise ROBINSON • John SASPORTAS • Elizabeth MARTIN • Phoebe MARTIN • Daryl BURNABY • Grace CALDWELL. Please volunteer if you can,


Today's full results and a complete event history can be found on the Wimbledon Common parkrun Results Page.


Words by Caroline Helder. Photos by Louise Robinson.


See you soon!




Wimbledon Common Parkrun weekly report – Event no. 611 – 21st July 2018

Wimbledon Common parkrun 611-10

Jo Manley, the Race Director for the day, climbed on to her perch at some time after 9.00am on a very warm day (24 C). She duly gave the briefing and welcomed the newcomers and tourists. As usual the odd Australian and South African was present. It is no longer a surprise but good to have them. There was also news that Jasper Lloyd had done 5 Parkruns in Russia. This is very worrying. Is he an infiltrator trying to fix the results? Quite by chance (or was it?) we had problems with the barcode scanner. Yikes! We have a hacker in our midst! Parkrun is not exempt from the evils of technology!

We have a short walk to the start at the moment as we use the hornet free course and the hornets enjoy their summer retreat. I have it on good authority from the Race Director that there were no incidents; just one bee sting. No need for the emergency services.

Let me introduce some of the characters who contribute so much to Wimbledon Common Parkrun every week.

Wimbledon Common parkrun 611-133

John - the coffee man


Peter - the overall Director. Due reverence must be paid to the boss. We cannot exclude him!

Wimbledon Common parkrun 611-2

Bob - the man behind the camera, one of many who produce fabulous pics every week.

Wimbledon Common parkrun 611-110

Oops! Sorry, this is the photographer's boss....

Prize for the best dressed runner goes to.....

Wimbledon Common parkrun 611-38


Enough of this frivolity. Now for some hard data.

This week 491 people ran, jogged and walked the course, of whom 42 were first timers and 37 recorded new Personal Bests. Representatives of 28 different clubs took part.

A statistic I particularly like to look at is the Age graded scores as the playing field (or course?) is level and comparisons, however odious, are more meaningful. This week there were 8 runners with scores in excess of 80% with the highest being Lucy Woolhouse on 87.44%. The age ranges were from 15-17 to 55-59, which proves how interesting it is to look at these scores - all groups are included.

The first two past the post were in the 15-17 category. Well done, guys.  Wimbledon Parkrun is clearly a breeding ground for Olympic talent!

The event was made possible by 20 volunteers:

Colin HARRIS • Philip TOSH • Peter Alasdair Fergus COLLINS • Stephen HARLAND • Jaspal DHALLEY • Robert FORTES • Christopher CULL • Bob WALSH • Anthony James HARPUR • Sandy PFEIFER • Rebecca COLLINS • Dieter SCHLEGEL • Jo MANLEY • Sally WINDLE • Mairie NALLIAH • Sara FABIEN • Christine LYDON • Pierre DEVITT • Tamsin ABBEY • Grace CALDWELL

and now the last photos...

Wimbledon Common parkrun 611-16

The beginning....

Wimbledon Common parkrun 611-160

The end...

Report writer: Robert Fortes

Photographer: Bob Walsh



⇐ Newer Posts