By Rob Woodward
Photos by Alex Geach
Spring is my favourite season and one of the highlights of the season is Pancake Day (I flipping love it). In recognition of Shrove Tuesday falling on 5th March, parkrun partner the Happy Egg Company laid on some treats at Tooting Common which were well received.
There is an old saying that you can’t make an omelette without breaking eggs. Another truism is that I can’t write a run report without adding puns. So to mark the Happy Egg Company eggs-travaganza and with free range to launch into a battery of unfunny yolk jokes, I have eggs-pertly s-egg-ued some hard boiled eggs-hibits into this week’s runny report. Don’t be a chicken and good (c)luck getting ova these egg-regious eggs-erts without cracking up…
On a dry (but not frying) morning with the sunny side up, eggs-actly 617 scrambled their way round the Tooting Triangle. 25 hatched their fledgling parkrun career by making their debut today while a further 48 had their first eggs-perience of Tooting Common. Of the r-egg-ular runners Emil Harkness, Jenny Clements, Miles Holway and George Dunn all ran their 50th while Martha Steedman ran her 10th as a junior.
In fitting with the event and answering the question who came first (chicken or egg?) it was someone with an avian name: Dave Finch of Victoria Park Harriers in an eggs-tremely quick 17 minutes 20 seconds. The second and third (albu)men also continued the bird theme: a brace of (Ealing) Eagles in the form of Thomas Glasock in 17:38 and Matt Kaufman in 17:50.
Lois Bond of Windsor, Slough, Eton & Hounslow AC was the fastest female in 19:23 followed by Tara Phillips in 20:54 and Stacy Wheat of Herne Hill Harriers in 21:17. Dave and Tara were two of those making their maiden appearance at Tooting this week but they may be hatching plans to be TC bound again to maintain their eggs-emplary record so far on this run.
Elsewhere in the field, an eggs-traordinary 117 set new PBs: a cracking effort that I hope all shell be pleased with their eggs-ertions.
Of course parkrun cannot take place without those going the eggs-tra mile by volunteering their time and feathers in caps should go to this week’s team of Emily BARR, Isobel BEINT, Cecilia BOGLE, Richard BOGLE, Christina BURMAN, Howard COAN, Sophie COLE, Emily COOPER, Catherine DA GRACA, Tamara DAVIES, Jaspal DHALLEY, Kathryn EVANS, Simon GALLACHER, Alex GEACH, Holly HAMILTON, Oliver HARTLEY, Sai-Yee LAM, Catherine LAW, Iona MARNEY, Saba NAYAB, Sarah O'CARROLL, Liam O'HARE, Helen OLDFIELD, Mavis ORBAN, Grace PLASTOW, Andy PUSEY, Ruth SLATER, Imogen SWALES, Tina For Gary TUNSTALL, Brigid WALTERS, Andrew WARDEN, David WHITE, Ken WILLIS, Marie-Anne WONG, Charlene WONG MIN and Rob WOODWARD.
The final mention must go to John Butcher, a spring chicken at 87 years young. John made the trip from Ware in Hertfordshire to Tooting Common for the first time and has clocked up nearly 250 parkruns in total. While his time this week of 32:33 is noteworthy in itself, he has run at almost 100 different parkruns and has poached the age record at most of them. Eggs-cellent stuff. Not one to take things over-easy, he has also volunteered over 50 times: an inspiring eggs-ample for us all.