parkrun, 300 runs, and lost and found barcodes

On Saturday when we were all assembled in Hove Park for our weekly fix of parkrun, the weather was overcast and dull and it made me wish for a bit of sunshine to dry out the exceptionally muddy ground. Move forward an hour and a half to sorting out results over post-run coffee and we were treated to sun, so much in fact that John D was having difficulty seeing the screen of the laptop while grappling with the results, and I could feel the heat warming my back while checking for missing tokens after the event. Summer will eventually come I know, but I really appreciated just a little bit of winter sun today as it has been rather dreary recently.

Hove Park numbers were still pretty high today, as they have been throughout January. We had 500 finishers and to be honest it looked like even more. There seemed to be a lot of other people using the park this morning (perhaps because it wasn’t raining for once) and we had a few near-misses with dogs off leads (NOT parkrunners’ dogs, I hasten to add) and people wandering aimlessly across the mouth of the finishing chute without watching out for runners. It’s timely to remind you all that we do share the park every Saturday morning for an hour or so, and it is really important to be mindful of all other park users, and also of other parkrunners who are still running even though you may have finished.

Today Hove Park parkrun stalwart Brian Friend completed his 300th run, accompanied by his trusty friend Butch (who also completed his 300th run and has undoubtedly run MORE miles than Brian over the years). Brian has run 274 of his parkruns at Hove Park, another 12 shared between Preston Park, Hove Prom and Bevendean Down, and the remainder at a range of venues including Workington, Bushy Park, Worcester, Bradford and Fell Foot parkrun at Newby Bridge. His first parkrun was on 24th April 2010 and he set his PB of 19:22 on 28th January 2012. He has volunteered every year since he started parkrunnning and has amassed 40 volunteering duties. So well done to Brian and Butch and may you enjoy your next 200 runs as you head towards your 500 t-shirt!!

Our top guys today were Andy McCaskill (16:24), Nicholas Airey (17:23) and Kieran Fuller (18:10). (Andy will need to knock off another 39 seconds to match Charlotte Arter’s new women’s parkrun world record, set today at Cardiff parkrun – she clocked an amazing time of 15:49.) Back in Hove Park our top three women were Sophie Coleman, Charlotte Boden and Leah Aplin in 19:40, 21:16 and 21:59 respectively. In position 100 today we had Dave Atherall, coming over the line in 23:19 on his 61st parkrun. Andy Bond, on his 14th parkrun finished in position 200 in a PB time of 25:57, and in position 300 we cheered in Jennifer Else, third time parkrunner with a time of 28:37. In 400th position was Anthony Michael – 92 parkruns under his belt and his time was 31:46. And finally, at position 500 was our lovely Tail Walker Kay Whitcroft, accompanying Brighton and Hove Women’s Running Club member Nikki Kentish across the line. Well done to all today’s finishers and I hope we have a dry day next Saturday.

Have you lost your barcode? If so, come and check with one of the Run Directors next week to see if we have it. We have a collection of athlete barcodes that have been found and handed in to us over the last few months. Here is the list of runners’ names (not alphabetical) whose barcodes are in our possession (in the laptop bag!):

Kirsty Lawton
Fiona Vincer
Corinna Safeio
Sally Beamish
Gary Ettridge
Rachel Pinker
Luke Bailey
Leila Swansborough
Ivy Musson
Aimee Neil
Richard Ede
Maddie Auckland
Noah Mason
Laura Vellacott
Ronnie Smith
Annie Marley
Chloe Griffin
Mark Pappenheim

And on the subject of barcodes, we are missing lots of our lovely new finisher tokens and would like them back. We won’t be cross with you if you come up to us and return one that you may have taken home in error – we just want to replenish our stocks. So check your bags and pockets and if you find a parkrun finish token, bring it back to us please.

Right, that’s it for this week. Happy February and may the sun shine on you next Saturday.