Another fine sunny day greeted Simon at the start of March parkrun #29 when at 7.30am he set off to set up the course which greeted 141 finishers. With his chic and shiny brand new trolley expertly put together by other members of the Core Team (whose names shall not be revealed) only a couple of weeks previously, he set off to put out the signage for the course only for it to break down a few metres into his journey when the nuts and bolts decided to detach themselves. Undeterred, like driving a vehicle in limp mode, he managed to complete the lap, joined by Dawn who (may have) had nothing to do with the piecing together of the trolley... Dawn however did bring cake to mark her 25th occasion volunteering which was well received!
We had 25 volunteers today involved in the various stages of the parkrun including a new role for Darren Moat as Tail Runner. We were well stocked with Marshalls armed with plenty of encouragement. Gena Jackman also received worthy mention, having already volunteered at March over 25 times, running just once. Selfless.
We welcomed a few first time tourists, parkrun Ambassador Andrew Lane from Wymondham, Jason and Alexandra WATSON-USHER from Leeds/Valley Striders AC, John and Gabrielle BIGGINS from Brighton and Colin GLEN from Cambridge. We hope that March parkrun sits favourably on your parkrun experiences.
The pearly King and Queen of this week's parkrun was Matthew Peel and Lisa Marriot, with Matthew just 4 seconds ahead. It was an entertaining finish when Matthew, famed for running Superhero style wide beside the steps as opposed to up them nearly found himself tangled up with some runners he was lapping. Graham Chapman had a very impressive age % record of 79.50, finishing 4th at 20.10 in the 60-64 age category. That's the second highest that we have seen at March and the best of all our male runners.
We had 35 Personal Bests this week giving the bell another battering. Jamie Sutton was over 3 minutes quicker than his previous best with Todd Robertson close to him being rewarded for his continual improvement. Malcolm Hunt achieved his best of 23.53, Simon Neville achieved his sub 25. Samantha Wool is now very close to sub 27. Carole Davis coped with the handicap of having to pace her Husband Gary round the course to improve her best by over a minute to 30.50. Carole is another success story from a local Monday night 'beginners' running group who are regular faces at the parkrun. Gold star of the week however goes to Angela Anderson who finished her 15th parkrun at a best time of 35.53, over 9 minutes quicker then when she first started getting involved in the parkrun scene.
Of our first time visitors to March we had a visit from Ben Goodman, who finished in 8th but without a barcode so sadly no official time. However, feedback was that he enjoyed the run and will be back with a barcode to challenge at the top end again soon! One to watch. Megan AYLING, in her first parkrun ever finished 4th lady in 26.13. Nathan Crofts also made this first appearance, nearly embarking on a 5th lap of the park before being turned around at the bandstand and back to the finish line. Experienced under 10 runner Lucy had no sympathy for Nathan however, taking advantage to sprint ahead and finish a place higher...! Suzie Handley visited March on a house hunting expedition and managed to complete her first parkrun into the run – complete with handbag at the finish line!!!
March parkrun began on the 23rd of January 2016. Since then we have seen 983 different finishers with barcodes. This week we welcomed 30 'first timers' to March. If we get a similar number of first timers to March next weekend then we will be greeting our 1,000 different finisher at March parkrun #30.
I am sure that are most of you are deeply concerned about the health of our new trolley. After the parkrun Harry Littlemore and Darren Moat made attempts to repair the trolley. Darren, still fresh from his Tail Runner duties raced off to his car and returned with his unused socked set purchased from Woolworths. Even with this specialist piece of equipment they were unable to bring the trolley back to health in time so it looks like the much loved old Somerfield trolley will be promoted back to head trolley next week. Stay tuned...