Well it was a great running weekend that has now sadly passed us by. This week saw the running of the annual Abbey Dash in Leeds where 9000 runners bash along Kirkstall Road to the magnificent ruins of the 10th century Kirkstall Abbey. Then turn around and return triumphantly in front of Cuthbert Brodericks Victorian masterpiece Town Hall to big crowds and vocal support.
It was great to see loads of Roundhay parkrunners there taking on the challenge, far too many to mention in this report but several met up afterwards for a deserved full English breakfast and maybe even an early doors ‘refreshment’ after the mornings efforts.
It was great to see that the weather, although chilly, was perfect for running and it did seem to bring out the personal bests in people with big PB’s for many runners from the really quick guys to the ‘averagely’ quick so a huge Roundhay hug to all of you.
It was a marked change to the weather that greeted us at that other Victorian master piece of Roundhay Park on the previous morning. It had rained on and off for most of the night but whilst putting out the cones and setting up the funnel the parkrun weather gods intervened and it dried up enough to make sure nobody was totally soaked.
We had a huge bumper truck load of volunteers – mainly due to the Abbey Dash, not the inclement weather you understand – which made all the difference in running a lovely smooth event this week. Bekki Wheatley took up the Run Directors reigns again making sure everyone had a safe run and we handed out T-shirts to some juniors runners who had all gained their ‘10s’. Mike Mansfield joined us on his special ‘50’ day. He doesn’t quite qualify for his 50 T-shirt yet but his birthday did involve the number 50. He brought the whole family out for a run so hope he enjoyed his day. His son certainly tried to upstage him – but more on that later.
107 runners set off for 5000 metres of parkland running and it was clear that it was a good day to run as a lot of the quick runners had obviously booked the day off to rest up before the Abbey Dash. With a smaller field than we have had recently it was good chance to place highly and have a great run.
John Robson flew out of the blocks and it was obvious from the first lap that he was going to be our first runner home, which was his target. He now joins James Smith and the legendary ‘unknown runner’ in having 5 first across the line parkrun’s under his belt. He was followed home by James Kilner and Joel Giddings respectively. Rav Panesar was 4th home and I will give him a brief mention since he was unlucky as he finished 1 second outside his PB time from last week.
John and the others have a long way to go to the match the first across the line record holder at Roundhay, who again clicked the timer to be the first lady back this week to make it into double figures with 10 firsts at Roundhay. I am of course talking about Madeline Watson who notched another first over the line this week.
Denise Ramsden was second lady home in a great new personal best time of 26:01 and third lady back was Harriet Frances Carlyle.
We were joined this week by Antony Streams from Reading who has run 20 different parkruns in 20 weeks and this week he chose Roundhay to be his 20th. We hope he enjoyed the run and he has kindly agreed to be our interviewee for this month which will be published next week on this site.
There were some terrific runs this week and I’ll mention the highlights:-
The previously mentioned Mansfield family were out running and young Ryan really had the bit between his teeth smashing 39 seconds from his previous best time and jumping from 26th to 7th for his previous best position as he rocked home in 21:06 before handing out the birthday cake. It’s just a terrible shame from him that his Dad moves into a new category and will have an ever increasing handicap % as Ryan’s is reduced now week on week! I feel a smackdown coming on! Great running though Ryan, really tremendous stuff.
Thomas John Woodhead joined in the PB fun and games with a new low of 24:28 for him along with Anthony Stones who knocked out a new PB this week.
BIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIG HUGS went to Ronnie Sam Bray who this week, 51 weeks after posting his last personal best in November 2011, finally went and beat it shaving a second off his old time. He and Papa were very happy and Junior posed with the ‘guns’ to celebrate!
For the ladies it was a case of same again as Dawn Parton continued her charge down the times table with her 6th PB in 7 weeks this time knocking 22 seconds off her previous best down to 29:27 which considering her PB in September was a few seconds of 33 minutes is fantastic – well done to her.
Huge congratulations to Anne Jones who this week broke through the 30 minute barrier to become a sub thirty runner for the first time at Roundhay with a new PB. Big well done to Maya Drinkall who last PB’d in January and this week shaved some more seconds off to get her PB.
Finally before we leave this week and enter the world of the future a big Hey Hey to Hetta Morath who I am too modest to reveal her age category but she scored a huge 74% age grading this week in fact it was only out done by young Joe Sherman who came in 9th … yes 9th and in 21:15 and was a few hundredth of a seconds off a whopping 77% age grade. Well done to all, young and old that’s what we love about parkrun.
If you ran the Abbey Dash on Sunday then this coming Saturday WEAR YOUR T-SHIRT!
We want to see as many ‘Dash’ T-shirts as possible running on Saturday, of course if you have the time to volunteer that would be tremendous as well …. And still wear your T-Shirt!
If you can give up your time meet at the bandstand at 08:20 everyone else we’ll see you just before 9AM at the start line.
Roundhay parkrun team