By Dave Lingwood.
A bumper crowd of 446 parkrunners overcame freezing temperatures and descended on Roundhay Park on Saturday to get their weekly parkrun fix. Despite the cancellation of a fair number of parkruns across Yorkshire, the North East and further afield, there was thankfully no sign of ice at Roundhay and even (dare we say it in November) a little sunshine.
Gathering at the start, the Run Director went through some of the milestones. Congratulations to Alistair URQUHART and Phil GILLIBRAND who completed their 100th parkruns respectively, and to Ben MEEKS and Reuben RUSSELLWOOD who celebrated reaching their 50th. Finally, there was a big round of applause for the Mini Mermaids – a fantastically enthusiastic group of youngsters who were out in force to celebrate completing the Couch to 5k challenge. Judging by the speed I saw many running off at, I can fully imagine Roundhay will see many more of them in the future!
With the Briefing done, we were off. Visiting from York – where we do not have hills! – I was excited to test myself on the course. This test came early, starting predictably enough on a hill! After conquering this first climb, I was able to get into a good rhythm. Running past Mansion House, standing dominantly on the hill, it was a joy to set foot on such wide paths. Dropping down to the left at the end of the park, I particularly appreciated the warning about the slippy conditions. Navigating this, I enjoyed the downward stretch and then the snaking section towards the boating lake. At the end of this section, I tackled the full hill with relish. Looking around from my modest position, it was a real joy to see the first runners hammering it around the course and a sea of people both behind them and myself. What other course can offer this I thought? From thereon, I completed two more laps. Whilst each was more challenging, on the positive side it gave many more opportunities to take in the stunning surroundings. All in all – a fantastic parkrun, a stunning location and a great, friendly Yorkshire welcome.
Many congratulations to all the participants including the following:
Daniel JOSEPHS – First Male Finisher (18:14)
Jihanna ALLARD – First Female Finisher (20:08)
Sue SUNDERLAND – Best Age Grading (79.89%).
Adam BULL and Carol Diane BULL - Most Experienced Parkrunners, amazingly completing their 439th parkruns together.
For the benefit of the statistically inclined we welcomed 63 first time visitors from different parkruns, and runners from clubs in Dublin, Selby, Harrogate, Tadcaster, High Peak, Northowram, Woodhall, York and Beverley. Congratulations to the 54 parkrunners who all smashed their PBs, an amazing achievement given the cold conditions and challenging course.
We finally welcomed 17 first ever parkrunners to Roundhay. Well done to Jack BACKHOUSE, Richard SELLMAN, Ugne STANIULIONYTE, Ben MCCARRICK, Alex MCCARRICK, Lance COBURN, Conor DEVLIN, Minnie DEVLIN, Eloise DUTESON, Harvey SPONG, Dan DUMMER, Gary GAIR-DUMMER, Darren GREENWOOD, Ben BEDFORD, Louis SPONG, Nathan TAYLOR and Nick TAYLOR. Congratulations to you all and welcome to the parkrun family. If you can make it today on such a cold day, next time will be a breeze I’m sure!
Today’s parkrun wouldn’t have been possible without our wonderful volunteers who dedicated their time and effort to ensuring the event went as smoothly as ever. Thank you to the following awesome volunteers who braved the challenging conditions:
Emma BLUEMINK, Sidney BLUEMINK, Dan BORDOLEY, Ann CHIVERS, Daniel CHUBB, Eshana DASANJH, David GEE, Elaine GEE, Joel GIDDINGS, Agamya GUPTA, Christine HUCKERBY, Karen ILLINGWORTH, Steve JONES, Philip LIM, Dave LINGWOOD, Mary O’DONNELL, Philip RIXHAM, Penelope ROBINSON, Anthony STONES, James TARRAN, Dave WEIGHT and Andrew WICKS.
Today's full results and a complete event history can be found on the Roundhay parkrun Results Page.
The male record is held by James SMITH who recorded a time of 15:34 on 19h November 2011 (event number 29).
The female record is held by Lizzie BROWNE who recorded a time of 17:46 on 13th June 2015 (event number 217).
The Age Grade course record is held by Gill MYERS who recorded 85.52% (20:22) on 31st August 2013 (event number 122).