Newbury parkrun is cancelled on 2021-07-31 – COVID-19 (Coronavirus)

Christmas Day parkrun

Newbury parkrun is holding a very special festive run on Christmas Day at 9am! Runners are encouraged to come dressed as festively as possible, and Santa Claus has sent Mrs Claus herself to deliver special stockings to all juniors who run or volunteer at the event. We hear rumours of medals in these stockings!

We'll aim to start punctualy so you can get back to your festivities (there should be time to get to 10am church services, too).

What better way could there be to starting Christmas Day?

See you tomorrow morning, and a very happy Christmas to all parkrunners!

Rachael Elliott (Event Director)

running-Santa-cartoon

 

Newbury parkrun Event #87: 14 September 2013

Those cold, drizzly September mornings. They're not conducive to parkrunning. Or are they?

With heavy rain and some of the coldest temperatures we've had at parkrun since spring forecast, we predicted our numbers might suffer this week. After all, opening the curtains to grey skies and that horrid meteorological condition we can only describe as "omnidrizzle" is more likely to make us dive beneath the covers for some extra sleep than leap out of bed and try to break a 5k personal best. Or is it?

Well, it seems that those of us who live in West Berkshire defy human nature - as 9am approached, we were faced with 391 enthusiastic faces who were raring to run. Anyone who tracks our weekly attendance will instantly know that this is a new attendance record. Moreover, our previous record was on our "special" Jubilee event (which attracted a number of visitors) so to have 391 turn up for a normal event on a normal September morning is quite stunning. We know we should now hit the 400 runner mark in a matter of weeks which would be amazing and testament to just how addictive running has become in the Newbury area! Our statistics also tell us that we are now just five runners away from having 3,500 runners registered at Newbury parkrun - could next week be the week we cross the 400 runner barrier and have over 3,500 runners registered?*

* Lots of runners means lots of cars. Our car parks are now getting rather full each Saturday, so please read the note at the end of this report regarding car parking.

Before we started the run today, we had some T-shirts to present. We continue to be extremely sorry about the supply problems with the T-shirts which are largely affecting the junior 10-club T-shirts. We have absolutely no control at all in the T-shirt distribution, but we know that parkrun HQ are doing their very best to try and get T-shirts out to their very worthy recipients as soon as possible.

We've had his 10 T-shirt for quite a while, but today was Diarmuid Laverty's first parkrun since June. Diarmuid is one of the many pupils from Mary Hare School who participate in parkrun, and he has been away since June due to school holidays. Diarmuid's first parkrun was run exactly a year ago when he ran 25:26 on his first outing. However, in his tenth parkrun in June, he ran a highly impressive 20:40 - that's nearly five minutes off his debut time! Well done Diarmuid, and here's to a similar improve curve over the following year.

Diarmuid Laverty
Diarmuid Laverty: 10 Club

Next, it was the turn of Guy Watts to receive his "50 club" T-shirt. A member of Team Kennet, Guy has been a regular of Newbury parkrun since it started, but actually started his parkrun career in Basingstoke in February 2009. At nearly five years to earn his 50 club T-shirt, we have a feeling his next 50 runs will come a little quicker than the previous 50! However, his speed at earning his 50 club t-shirt is certainly not mirrored in his running: Guy has been first to cross the line nine times, and has an impressive personal best of 16:44 - the eleventh fastest time run at Newbury, and second fastest in his SM35-39 age category. Well done Guy!

Guy Watts
Guy Watts: 50 Club

Sara Philo was next to be presented with her "50 club" t-shirt. Sara is a member of the Newbury Runners group, and ran her first parkrun in June 2012. Her first run was completed in 35:15 and, following her debut, she notched up seven personal bests on the trot and got her time down to 30:40. Her dedication to training has now seen her time reduce to 27:21 - there can't be many of us who can boast a near eight-minute improvement in less than a year! With Sara's enthusiasm, we don't think it's presumptious to assume that Sara will soon see her times get below the magic 25 minute barrier! Congratulations, Sara!

Sara Philo
Sara Philo: 50 Club

Team Kennet's Mike Sheridan was the next worthy recipient of his 50 club T-shirt. Mike is one of our regular faces at parkrun, and also a frequent winner of the weekly "age graded" score competition with his results frequently earning him a score >80%. Indeed, his personal best of 19:40 equates to an age graded 83.73% - highly impressive indeed (and equates to a 24 year-old running 15:24!). Mike kept it a secret until post-parkrun coffee, but it was actually his birthday yesterday - and what better present than a 50 club T-shirt?! We also hear that Mike achieved his ultimate birthday present the following day - he ran a sub-40 minute 10k at the Victory 10k in Portsmouth (39:47) . Congratulations and happy birthday, Mike!

Mike Sheridan
Mike Sheridan: 50 Club

Finally, David Wright of Newbury AC also received his 50 Club T-shirt yesterday. However, David missed the presentation due to being delayed with his family and collected his shirt after the run. David ran his first parkrun in Andover in 2011, and has a Newbury parkrun personal best of an impressive 18:57 (ran at his first ever event!). David is one of our most travelled parkrunners, and has run 12 different parkruns boasting parkruns such as Llyn Llech Owain, Newport, Southwick and Conkers to his name. The picture below is a library picture of David from September, but we couldn't allow his face not to feature!

David Wright
David Wright: 50 Club

In today's runfirst timer Alex Muir (SM20-24) of Newbury AC put in a highly impressive debut run to cross the line first in 16:50 - a time which puts him as second in the SM20-24 age group and sees him as the fourteenth fastest runner ever to complete the Newbury course. Alex Hanson (JM15-19) of Team Kennet shares the same personal best as Muir, but yesterday came in in second place in a still highly creditable time of 17:34. Sadly, the runner who finished in third place today was barcodeless so unfortunately was not credited with a time today.

Amongst the ladies, Sheena Keates (VW35-39) of Runnymede Runners claimed her third first place out of four appearance at Newbury in a time of 19:53. Bev Hall (VW45-49) of Newbury AC took second place in 22:54 with Mai Brown (JW14) of Team Kennet taking the final podium spot in 23:10. We should also mention Sheila Marshall (VW55-59) of Newbury AC whose time of 23:46 equated to today's highest age graded score of 79.38%.

However, aside from the top finishers, there were some equally noteworthy performances elsewhere in the field today. We'd like to give Michael Phillips a mention: it was Michael's first run at Newbury, although he has 58 parkruns to his name. Michael's regular parkrun is Bushy Park in London (the home of parkrun), but we note that among his parkrun credentials he has a run at the US-parkrun, Livonia parkrun, on his list of events. Sarah Nangle, a Southampton parkrun regular, was also running Newbury for the first time and ran her fastest parkrun since May on the paths of Greenham! In total, there were 75 new personal bests. Kate Grieves and Ian Colcomb were two of those who were particularly happy to run new best times, with Debbie Studart pleased to finally get under 30 minutes again. We also noted that Lisa Ludewig ran her first parkrun today (which actually surprised us - Lisa is such a regular volunteer!), as did Adam Carr - well done to both of you! We're always interested in your own stories and hearing of your personal achievements, so please keep letting us know, either via our Facebook page (Link) or by emailing newburyoffice@parkrun.com.

We have to give particular thanks to the wonderful team of volunteers today. We've had a few challenges with the results recently (through no fault of anyone) but yesterday's results were uploaded extremely swiftly and, thanks to the technical expertise of parkrun HQ, also went online quicker than we can remember! Thanks therefore to Cheryl Langford, Dave, Samuel and Arthur Cheney, (the legend that is) Bob Phillips, Debbie Futcher, Sue, Paul and Ellie-Rose Bennett, Debbie Futcher, Harry Sullivan, Jo Amor, Karen Grinsted, Matt and Lauren Brown, Matt Walters, Mike Sheridan, Paul Grant, Paul Hendry, Richard Disney, Steven Nelthorpe, Mark Shepherd and Stuart Davidson. We also had Matt Walters and Karen Grinsted taking photos (which are available to view on the Facebook page: Link).

This year's points competition is now well underway. Karen Grinsted is is still leading the ladies' competition with 8,030 with Carrie Collins sneaking into second place with 7,291 points. Monique Amor remains in third place with a score of 7,024 points. In the men's competition, Karen's husband Mike Grinsted is leading with 8,290 points. Rob Saunders is in second place with 7,994 points and David Stratton remains in third place with 7,240 points.

After 87 events, 3466 athletes from 176 athletics clubs have now completed 20,610 runs on the Newbury parkrun course, running a cumulative total of 103,050km. The women's course record is held by Susie Bush who ran 17:49 in event #68 on  and the men's course record is held by Gareth Watkins who ran 15:44 in event #64 on 6 April 2013. The age graded record is held by Sandra Bowers who recorded a 95.78% in event #41.

After the event, we go to the wonderful Coffee Exchange on Greenham Business Park for wonderful home made food, tea and coffee after each parkrun. Please try and make it part of your regular Saturday morning parkrun routine and join us to chat about running, life, or even share stories about the old US Airforce base! Coffee Exchange have opened especially for Newbury parkrunners, so it is important we continue to support it. If you haven't heard about them, the cafe makes absolutely legendary rock cakes (which are normally still warm when we arrive as they're now having to bake extra ones on Saturday morning!). They have to be eaten to be believed!

Don't forget you can keep up to date with the latest Newbury parkrun chat through our Facebook page (Link) and via Twitter (Link). We're also always looking for more volunteers (and don't forget you get extra points each time you volunteer!) so please email newburyhelpers@parkrun.com if you are interested in being added to the volunteer database (and it is only right to be able to give some of the people who help each and every week a chance to run sometimes). We are also currently looking at people who would like to have a go at being a Run Director. This doesn't mean you have to organise the whole event - just be around to ensure all volunteers know what they're doing, can give a little talk before the run and just oversee the running of the event. You don't even have to process the results! Please take note of the following announcements:

  1. ***NEW*** Car Parking: Please note that our car parks are now getting extremely full due to the (brilliant!) number of runners we're now getting. If you could review your own travelling procedures (including running/cycling to parkrun or car sharing) that would be great. Alternatively, if you arrive a little earlier for parkrun, consider parking in the car park outside Coffee Exchange and using the run from the cafe to the parkrun as a warm-up (it's almost exactly a mile - a perfect warm up distance!). If you're coming from North Newbury, you could also consider using the car park at the control tower and jogging to the start as a warm up. Just keep up the considerate parking behaviour, and we'll be sure to keep other users of the business park happy.
  2. Points competition: Note that the points competition has changed slightly in the new Newbury parkrun year. The runner who is first across the line receives 300 points, second place 299, third place 298, etc. This means the points distribution is fairer, and we should only need to go into the one point per runner territory if we get more than 300 runners of a single sex at parkrun (this hasn't happened yet!).
  3. The start: Whilst we know it is natural human behaviour to want to start as close to the front as possible in order to get a watch time which matches the master timer. However, please do give consideration to fellow runners and start in a position in the field which best represents the speed you feel you are going to run. We had an incident this week where a runner fell at the start, and runners' (natural) keeness to get away at the start almost led to the lady being trampled on badly.
  4. Parking: We now have parking at the English Provinder Company thanks to Paul Hendry. We're extremely grateful to the EPC for allowing us use of their facility, but please ensure you follow the car park marshal's orders as we're not allowed to use all of it. Ensure you do not drop litter and treat the facility carefully.
  5. Running with dogs: We love the fact that people run with dogs! It is a joy to watch so many canine friends obviously enjoying the run as much as their owners. However, if you are going to run with your dog, please ensure you fit your dog with a harness rather than a collar. This is for their own comfort. If you'd like to learn more about running with dogs (or even want to go "up a gear" and try cani-cross racing) then the Cani-Cross UK website provides a wealth of information for you to get started. Note that from now, runners will only be allowed to run with a maximum of one dog.
  6. Registration: A number of people have asked where their t-shirts are for the 10, 50 and 100 clubs. It is vitally important that, if Newbury is your regular parkrun, you ensure you are registered to it as your "home run". If you don't and you don't specify where you would like your t-shirt to be delivered to, it will, by default, be delivered to the event where you are registered and it can take some time before we can arrange handover or for the shirts to be rerouted. You can update your details at anytime by following the link on the weekly parkrun newsletter.Any suggestions, ideas and feedback are always welcome to newburyoffice@parkrun.com.

Although we are now out of nesting season, it is still extremely important that you respect the flora and fauna of the area. This means keeping your dogs on leads at all times, and particularly avoiding the area known as the "Fire Plane" which is to the west of the start area (and clearly marked with signs). To find out more information about the wildlife on the common, please refer to the downloadable leaflet "Welcome to Crookham and Greenham Common" which provides an excellent summary. Note that control of the common is about to be handed over to the Berkshire, Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire Wildlife Trust (from West Berks District Council) so it is imperative that we keep up our good behaviour; respecting other common users and always taking litter home.

See you next week!

Rachael Elliott (Event Director)

 

Results issue for event #85 (31 August 2013)

We're sorry to say that we had a number of issues with the results today and, in order to make them as accurate as we can, we would be very grateful if you could email us at agentsmith77@gmail.com with your name, time and (if you happen to know it) your finishing position and we'll try and work things out.

In the meantime, put your feet up, enjoy your Saturday and don't keep pressing refresh on the results page for some hours yet.....

Rachael (Event Director)

 

Newbury parkrun Event #83: 17 August 2013

Holidays fail to thwart the new runner stampede!

We're now unfortunately counting the days down until Autumn, but intend to enjoy the warmer conditions as much as we can before we start to see the first flowers on our hallowed gorse bushes: a sure sign that the nights are closing in. Numbers were down slightly this week as many of our regular runners were either away on holiday, or taking part in an en masse roadtrip to the Minley 20k race (where we've heard stories of some excellent running!).

290 runners toed the line this week - the lowest number since 22 June - but when you consider that we often struggled to break the 200 runner mark in August last year, this is testament to just how popular parkrun - and running in general - has become in Newbury over the past year. In fact, the best demonstration of this growing popularity is the fact that an incredible 44 runners this week (or 15% of the field) were new to Newbury parkrun. Whilst most were new to the parkrun concept in general, we did have some visitors, or "parkrun tourists" as they are commonly known. One of those was Alex Dicks: Alex started his parkrun career at Eastleigh in 2011 and, although his allegiance is now at Winchester parkrun, he has run 12 different parkruns during the course of his 42-run career and managed his first sub-20 parkrun at Southampton on 6 July. We also welcomed Julie Collins and Shane Powell from the rather amusingly named "Cake Club". Both Julie and Shane are regulars of the Havant parkrun and, although both have run a variety of different parkruns, Julie's time today was her second fastest ever parkrun time, and Shane managed an all time parkrun personal best! Well done to both of you. Chris Griggs has 17 parkruns to his name, and can normally be found at the Oxford parkrun at Cutteslowe Park. Finally, our (arguably) furthest travelled visitor this week was Serena Partridge of Pickering AC. Serena normally frequents the northern parkruns of Sewerby and York (with excursions to Glasgow, Tees Barrage and Northampton), but today was her most southerly ever parkrun! We hope you all enjoyed yourselves, and hope to welcome you back again very soon.

Before the run got underway today, we had three new t-shirts to present. First to collect their t-shirt was new 10-club member, Chris Carr. Chris ran his first parkrun back in May, and now run 13 parkruns (all at Newbury) to his name. He's managed to get under the magical 30-minute mark twice, and has a personal best of 29:28. Well done Chris!

Chris Carr
Chris Carr: 10 Club

Next, it was the turn of Graham Phillips to receive his 50 Club shirt. Graham ran his first Newbury parkrun back in May 2012 in 36:04, and then succeeded in reducing his time on his next five consecutive outings at parkrun. His streak ended with a time of 30:34 on 16 June 2012. Since then, he has come on in leaps and bounds and last week ran a new personal best of 25:05 - just one second shy of a massive eleven minute improvement! Does this mean we're going to see him challenging Mo Farah by the time he collects his 100 shirt?! Only time will tell. Congratulations, Graham!

Graham Phillips
Graham Phillips: 50 Club

The final T-shirt presented today went to Phil Cowhig of Team Kennet. Phil was present at the first snow-covered Newbury parkrun on 11 February 2012, and hasn't looked back. Phil impressively snow-danced to a time of 22:55 on the snow, and has since managed to get his time down to a fast 21:46. Phil regularly runs with his son Baxter, and the reason he hasn't got to 50 faster is because of the sheer number of times he's volunteered! Phil's one of the happiest faces we have at Newbury, and look forward to even more improvements as he edges towards 100 runs. Well done Philip!

Phil Cowhig
Phil Cowhig: 50 Club

(We know that many of you are still waiting for t-shirts to be delivered, and can only apologise for the delay. It breaks my heart each month when the batch is delivered and there are so many t-shirts - particularly for junior runners - which have been delayed. We know that parkrun HQ are doing their utmost to try and get shirts made and distributed as quickly as they can, and you *will* receive your shirts soon)

In today's run, Alex Hanson (JM15-19) of Team Kennet was the first across the line in 17:28. It was the third time Alex has been first to finish and, more importantly, is the first time he's managed to get below 17:30. David Fry (SM25-29) of Basingstoke & Mid Hants AC took second place in 17:51, with Ciaran Birch (JM15-19) of Didcot Runners finishing just a stride behind in 17:52. It's the first time Ciaran has run Newbury parkrun since January, and is a massive personal best for him - his previous best was 19:18, so his new time is an 86 second improvement!

Sheena Keates (VW35-39) of Runnymede Runners was first across the line in 19:27. Sheena has 75 parkruns to her name and, although only three have been run at Newbury, her time today equates to her fastest parkrun ever! Well done Sheena. Mai Brown (JW14) of Team Kennet was second lady across the line in a new personal best of 21:55, with Christina Pugsley (SW30-34) of Newbury AC finishing third and completing the podium ladies' personal best bingo with a new best time of 22:06.

We had two runners who exceeded the impressive 80% age graded mark today: Mike Sheridan (VM60-64) earned a score of 82.68% with his time of 19:55, whilst Sheila Marshall (VW55-59) was graded 81.73% for her new personal best time of 23:05.

We also noticed some impressive performances throughout the field today. You don't have to be a huge football fan to know about ex-England international Stuart Pearce. Stuart ran our parkrun today and, whether it was deliberate or not, chose to not get a barcode scanned for a time. Our timekeepers tell us that Stuart ran an impressive 21 minute 5k which shows that he is clearly still keeping in shape. Stuart's son, Harley, also ran an impressive 24:39 in his debut run at Greenham. We really hope they'll be back in future weeks. In fact, it seemed to be the day for Stuarts to make their parkrun debut: Stuart Wilson also enjoyed his first run at Newbury, and we hope he'll be make for many more! Rog Davis managed to break into the 21 minute bracket for the first time, whilst Karsh Davey's week of splurging out on the diet front whilst on holiday in Cornwall saw him rewarded with an eleven second personal best! Paul Grant meanwhile managed his sixth personal best in six weeks (showing that setting the course up provides the perfect warm up!). He has now got his best time down to 23:15 - nearly 4.5 minutes better than his first parkrun, just three months ago. Finally, we don't know whether to congratulate or commiserate with Matt Brookes: last week, Matt ran 20:02 - so painstakingly close to breaking 20. This week, he ran 20:01! Hopefully, by mathematical logic, he should be sub-20 on 31 August.

We have to give particular thanks to the wonderful team of volunteers today. We're rather struggling for volunteer help at the moment given it's the holidays, and the team today did a perfect job. Thanks therefore to Dave and Alanna Smith, Anne and Charlotte Wenlock, Chi Yeung, Claire Heller, Claire Sandys, Clare Groombridge, Gary Shaughnessy, Mark Shepherd, Matt Walters, Nathan Darling, Paul Grant, Paul Hendry, Philip and Wendy Lewis and Tim Hill. We also had John Barr and Clive Williams taking photos (which are available to view on the Facebook page: Link).

Timekeepers
You too can look this cool if you timekeep at Newbury parkrun. Today's team with the watches were Matt Walters, Tim Hill and Gary Shaughnessy

This year's points competition is now well underway. Karen Grinsted is is still leading the ladies' competition with 8,030 with Carrie Collins sneaking into second place with 7,291 points. Monique Amor remains in third place with a score of 7,024 points. In the men's competition, Karen's husband Mike Grinsted is leading with 8,290 points. Rob Saunders is in second place with 7,994 points and David Stratton remains in third place with 7,240 points.

After 83 events, 3,335 athletes from 171 athletics clubs have now completed 19,253 runs on the Newbury parkrun course, running a cumulative total of 96,265km. The women's course record is held by Sandra Bowers who ran 15:48 in event #43 on 24 November 2012 and the men's course record is held by Gareth Watkins who ran 15:44 in event #64 on 6 April 2013. The age graded record is held by Sandra Bowers who recorded a 95.78% in event #41.

After the event, we go to the wonderful Coffee Exchange on Greenham Business Park for wonderful home made food, tea and coffee after each parkrun. Please try and make it part of your regular Saturday morning parkrun routine and join us to chat about running, life, or even share stories about the old US Airforce base! Coffee Exchange have opened especially for Newbury parkrunners, so it is important we continue to support it. If you haven't heard about them, the cafe makes absolutely legendary rock cakes (which are normally still warm when we arrive as they're now having to bake extra ones on Saturday morning!). They have to be eaten to be believed!

Don't forget you can keep up to date with the latest Newbury parkrun chat through our Facebook page (Link) and via Twitter (Link). We're also always looking for more volunteers (and don't forget you get extra points each time you volunteer!) so please email newburyhelpers@parkrun.com if you are interested in being added to the volunteer database (and it is only right to be able to give some of the people who help each and every week a chance to run sometimes). We are also currently looking at people who would like to have a go at being a Run Director. This doesn't mean you have to organise the whole event - just be around to ensure all volunteers know what they're doing, can give a little talk before the run and just oversee the running of the event. You don't even have to process the results! Please take note of the following announcements:

  1. Points competition: Note that the points competition has changed slightly in the new Newbury parkrun year. The runner who is first across the line receives 300 points, second place 299, third place 298, etc. This means the points distribution is fairer, and we should only need to go into the one point per runner territory if we get more than 300 runners of a single sex at parkrun (this hasn't happened yet!).
  2. The start: Whilst we know it is natural human behaviour to want to start as close to the front as possible in order to get a watch time which matches the master timer. However, please do give consideration to fellow runners and start in a position in the field which best represents the speed you feel you are going to run. We had an incident this week where a runner fell at the start, and runners' (natural) keeness to get away at the start almost led to the lady being trampled on badly.
  3. Parking: We now have parking at the English Provinder Company thanks to Paul Hendry. We're extremely grateful to the EPC for allowing us use of their facility, but please ensure you follow the car park marshal's orders as we're not allowed to use all of it. Ensure you do not drop litter and treat the facility carefully.
  4. Running with dogs: We love the fact that people run with dogs! It is a joy to watch so many canine friends obviously enjoying the run as much as their owners. However, if you are going to run with your dog, please ensure you fit your dog with a harness rather than a collar. This is for their own comfort. If you'd like to learn more about running with dogs (or even want to go "up a gear" and try cani-cross racing) then the Cani-Cross UK website provides a wealth of information for you to get started. Note that from now, runners will only be allowed to run with a maximum of one dog.
  5. Registration: A number of people have asked where their t-shirts are for the 10, 50 and 100 clubs. It is vitally important that, if Newbury is your regular parkrun, you ensure you are registered to it as your "home run". If you don't and you don't specify where you would like your t-shirt to be delivered to, it will, by default, be delivered to the event where you are registered and it can take some time before we can arrange handover or for the shirts to be rerouted. You can update your details at anytime by following the link on the weekly parkrun newsletter.Any suggestions, ideas and feedback are always welcome to newburyoffice@parkrun.com.

We'd also like to remind you that we are now back in nesting season on Greenham Common, and it is extremely important that you respect the flora and fauna of the area. This means keeping your dogs on leads at all times, and particularly avoiding the area known as the "Fire Plane" which is to the west of the start area (and clearly marked with signs). To find out more information about the wildlife on the common, please refer to the downloadable leaflet "Welcome to Crookham and Greenham Common" which provides an excellent summary.

See you next week!

Rachael Elliott (Event Director)

 

Newbury parkrun Event #81: 3 August 2013

Another week of warmth, another week of fast times!

Newbury parkrunners were once again blessed with beautiful conditions for the 81st Newbury parkrun. Although the wind may have been a little stronger on the home straight than would have been ideal, it certainly didn't stop 76 of today's 320 finishers recording new personal bests today - that's 28% of all of you who were running the course for the first time.

Perhaps the most encouraging statistic of the day though was the fact that we welcomed 45 first timers to Greenham today - this is the highest number of newcomers we've welcomed for months. The fastest parkrun first timer today was Zuzana Faberova. Zuzana finished as fourth female in a time of 21:55 - the fifth fastest time recorded at Greenham by a JW15-19. However, whilst most of today's newcomers had never run a parkrun anywhere before, there were some visitors today from other parkruns: Irene Liming and Linda Booth were the day's only 100 Club visitors, boasting 111 and 141 parkruns to their names respectively. Irene and Linda run the Reading parkrun normally. We also had some 50 Club visitors from Reading: Claire Seymour has run 92 parkruns (with Newbury being her ninth unique venue!), whilst James Bailey made only his fourth ever excursion away from Reading (in a total of 91 parkruns). Sheena Keates, another Reading parkrunner, finished impressively as third lady today in a time of 20:24 - her quickest parkrun since 31 December 2011. Mark Jeffrey has never ventured from the confines of War Memorial Park and the Basingstoke parkrun before today - but we are flattered that Mark chose Newbury to run his 50th parkrun! Ian Bunday started his parkrun career at Bromley, but more recently has made the cliffside parkrun at Great Yarmouth (Gorleston Cliffs) his home and today made his first trip to Newbury. It was also wonderful to welcome Ivy, Ben and Elliot Perrins - four junior parkrunners who frequent Reading parkrun and the Woodley juniors' parkrun on Sundays.

In today's run, Colin Lough (SM30-34) was first runner across the line for the sixth week in a row, finishing with a time of 17:01. Colin was pushed all the way once again by James Craggs (SM30-34) of Newbury AC who finished in 17:02 (James has now run four parkruns in 17:01, 17:02, 17:04 and 17:05 - he *will* break 17 soon!). Daniel Tuttle (SM20-24), also of Newbury AC, took the final podium spot in 17:58.

James Craggs and Colin Lough
James Craggs and Colin Lough battling it out for first place

There was also a tight race amongst the ladies today: Liz Hartney (VW45-49) of Reading AC was eventually victorious in 19:22 - her fastest Newbury parkrun since February (and also earning the highest age graded score of the day of 83.65%). Edwina McDowall (VW40-44) of Tri2O had to settle for second today, but still put in a good run to cross the line in 19:45. As mentioned above, Reading visitor Sheena Keates (VW35-39) of Runnymede Runners took third in 20:24. Also worthy of a mention is Sheila Marshall (VW55-59) of Newbury AC. Sheila's time of 23:35 equates to an age graded score of 80.00% - the only other time (apart from Liz's) which was 80% or above.

Liz Hartney
Liz Hartney: Today's first female finisher

The frontrunners weren't the only ones who put in impressive performances today. Matt Walters continued his recent run of success with yet another personal best (his second personal best in a row - and on the back of a 10k pb on Sunday), with Russell Barrett, Keith Pearce and Paul Grant vocally happy to run new pbs! There were some notable absences who made a welcome return today: Sarah Parry surprised herself by being able to run nearly all the way after having a number of weeks out to recover from an operation, whilst Colin Brassington made his first run back after a bad ankle sprain at Netley Abbey parkrun two weeks ago. Linda Graham also ran her first parkrun in eight months (it'll get easier again, Linda!). Alex Davey completed her first ever parkrun, whilst Ash Singal completed one of only a handful of parkruns he's run without his faithful hound, Monty (and managed a PB of 21:13 to boot!).

Those worth the biggest mentions today were the wonderful team of volunteers who made very smooth work of the running of today's event (and the results were very easy to process). Thanks therefore to Ady and Darren Tuckwell, Alison and Beth Dixon, Fraser and Charlie Harding, David Pierce-Williams, Debbie Dawes, Gordon Ward, Richard and Jenny Carter, John Murrell, Sandra, Josh and Sam Davies, Mike and Karen Grinsted, Lauren Brown, Liz Harkness, Mark Shepherd, Mike Futcher and Paul Hendry. We also had Clive Williams taking photos (which are available to view on the Facebook page: Link).

Liz Hartney
Fraser and Charlie Harding - doing a superb job sorting out the tokens post-run. We once again got all the position tags back, so thank you to all of you!

This year's points competition is now well underway. Karen Grinsted is is still leading the ladies' competition with 7,138 with Mags Scarlett sneaking into second place with 6,715 points. Monique Amor is in third place with a score of 6,494 points. In the men's competition, Karen's husband Mike Grinsted is leading with 7,419 points. Rob Saunders is in second place with 7,165 points and David Stratton remains in third place with 6,514 points (all so close amongst the men!).

After 81 events, 3,245 athletes from 165 athletics clubs have now completed 18,668 runs on the Newbury parkrun course, running a cumulative total of 93,340km. The women's course record is held by Sandra Bowers who ran 15:48 in event #43 on 24 November 2012 and the men's course record is held by Gareth Watkins who ran 15:44 in event #64 on 6 April 2013. The age graded record is held by Sandra Bowers who recorded a 95.78% in event #41.

After the event, we go to the wonderful Coffee Exchange on Greenham Business Park for wonderful home made food, tea and coffee after each parkrun. Please try and make it part of your regular Saturday morning parkrun routine and join us to chat about running, life, or even share stories about the old US Airforce base! Coffee Exchange have opened especially for Newbury parkrunners, so it is important we continue to support it. If you haven't heard about them, the cafe makes absolutely legendary rock cakes (which are normally still warm when we arrive as they're now having to bake extra ones on Saturday morning!). They have to be eaten to be believed!

Don't forget you can keep up to date with the latest Newbury parkrun chat through our Facebook page (Link) and via Twitter (Link). We're also always looking for more volunteers (and don't forget you get extra points each time you volunteer!) so please email newburyhelpers@parkrun.com if you are interested in being added to the volunteer database (and it is only right to be able to give some of the people who help each and every week a chance to run sometimes). We are also currently looking at people who would like to have a go at being a Run Director. This doesn't mean you have to organise the whole event - just be around to ensure all volunteers know what they're doing, can give a little talk before the run and just oversee the running of the event. You don't even have to process the results! Please take note of the following announcements:

  1. Points competition: Note that the points competition has changed slightly in the new Newbury parkrun year. The runner who is first across the line receives 300 points, second place 299, third place 298, etc. This means the points distribution is fairer, and we should only need to go into the one point per runner territory if we get more than 300 runners of a single sex at parkrun (this hasn't happened yet!).
  2. The start: Whilst we know it is natural human behaviour to want to start as close to the front as possible in order to get a watch time which matches the master timer. However, please do give consideration to fellow runners and start in a position in the field which best represents the speed you feel you are going to run. We had an incident this week where a runner fell at the start, and runners' (natural) keeness to get away at the start almost led to the lady being trampled on badly.
  3. Parking: We now have parking at the English Provinder Company thanks to Paul Hendry. We're extremely grateful to the EPC for allowing us use of their facility, but please ensure you follow the car park marshal's orders as we're not allowed to use all of it. Ensure you do not drop litter and treat the facility carefully.
  4. Running with dogs: We love the fact that people run with dogs! It is a joy to watch so many canine friends obviously enjoying the run as much as their owners. However, if you are going to run with your dog, please ensure you fit your dog with a harness rather than a collar. This is for their own comfort. If you'd like to learn more about running with dogs (or even want to go "up a gear" and try cani-cross racing) then the Cani-Cross UK website provides a wealth of information for you to get started. Note that from now, runners will only be allowed to run with a maximum of one dog.
  5. Registration: A number of people have asked where their t-shirts are for the 10, 50 and 100 clubs. It is vitally important that, if Newbury is your regular parkrun, you ensure you are registered to it as your "home run". If you don't and you don't specify where you would like your t-shirt to be delivered to, it will, by default, be delivered to the event where you are registered and it can take some time before we can arrange handover or for the shirts to be rerouted. You can update your details at anytime by following the link on the weekly parkrun newsletter.Any suggestions, ideas and feedback are always welcome to newburyoffice@parkrun.com.

We'd also like to remind you that we are now back in nesting season on Greenham Common, and it is extremely important that you respect the flora and fauna of the area. This means keeping your dogs on leads at all times, and particularly avoiding the area known as the "Fire Plane" which is to the west of the start area (and clearly marked with signs). To find out more information about the wildlife on the common, please refer to the downloadable leaflet "Welcome to Crookham and Greenham Common" which provides an excellent summary.

See you next week!

Rachael Elliott (Event Director)