After exactly 50 weeks I decided to make my second visit to Whinlatter Forest. It had been long enough to forget …… to forget why this is officially the toughest parkrun in the UK. But it didn’t take long to remember that after the easy first 500 metres starting downhill, and full of confidence that maybe it wasn’t that bad after all, the uphills begin and some (like me) begin to wind down to a power walk, and then a general walk, and then …….. and then, to a crawl.
But before we look at how everyone did, let’s applaud the volunteer dream-makers this week which allowed the run to take place: Angela BROWN • Brendan CARLIN • Coral PRICE • Diana GUGLIELMOTTI • Howard SEAL • John SCRIVENS • Leon BOND • Rachel JONES • Samantha AYERS • Sonia DRYDEN • Suzanna CRUICKSHANK
So it’s now spring and not the winter of the Beast from the East which was just finishing when I last visited a year ago. And spring brought the attendance back into three figures with 100 parkrunners on the start line for the third time in 2019. Despite being 1,000ft above sea level at the start, the weather Gods were kind and presented the runners with 8℃ and a calm day.
After a few announcements from the Run Director she set us all off, so how did we all do?
Ryan Galea of Netherhall AC finished in first place in 20:06 with a new Personal Best time in his 5th parkrun, four of which have been at Whinlatter Forest. He ran 23:00 at his first visit and has run a PB every visit since. David Song finished in second place just over a minute behind in 21:13, with Charles Casey of Harrogate Harriers finishing third in 21:15 which was another Personal Best achievement in his 152nd parkrun.
The first lady to finish (and 5th position overall) was Kate Nicholas of Canicross Midlands who was accompanied by the first dog, in 21:53. This makes her the 6th fastest lady ever to run at Whinlatter Forest. She was followed in by Jodie Laird (12th overall) of Northern Fells Running Club in a Personal Best Time of 23:36. There was another Personal Best for third lady Samantha Ayres of BodyFit Cumbria who finished 19th overall in 25:05.
There were 31 runners who managed to run a Personal Best time which is a stunning statistic because if you discount the 5 unknown runners and those who were running at Whinlatter for the first time, it means that 53% of those who have run here before managed a Personal Best time.
38 runners were ladies and 53 were men, and included in those numbers there were 4 juniors. Don’t forget that while we love the youngsters running with us, if the junior is under the age of 11 they MUST be accompanied at all times during the run by an adult, which doesn’t have to be a parent, but should ideally be someone they know. Three of the juniors ran PBs today, while the youngest of them, Abby Wilkins, just missed her own PB by 30 seconds in the Junior 11-14 category.
There were 36 First Timers who joined the parkrun party today and among them were three who were running their very first parkrun and you have to admire choosing Whinlatter Forest as your first ever event. All I can say is that wherever you go from here, it’s getting easier. These three are worthy of a mention so well done to Brad Williamson, Alex Clarke and Callum Clarke. Welcome to the parkrun family. Now you have done that first run why not have another go at Whinlatter next week and set a new Personal Best time?
On Saturday there were 5 runners who were shown as ‘unknown’. It’s terrible to have a brilliant run, maybe get a Personal Best, and then fail to have it recognised because you have no barcode. PLEASE …. Don’t Forget Your Barcode. Need a new barcode? Or would you like your result as a text? Follow the link to your profile from your latest results email.
And remember please don’t take home the finish tokens. They are not souveniers …….. DON’T BE A TOKEN MAGPIE.
HALL OF FAME
Runners celebrating milestones this week:
Ian Harvey of Wigton RRC who ran his 200th parkrun, of which 13 have been at Whinlatter Forest. And to celebrate further he removed 34 seconds from his previous best time set four weeks ago.
Number of Commemorative T-shirts on show:
Junior White (10 runs) – 3 runners
Cardinal Red (50 runs) – 13 runners
Jet Black (100 runs) – 21 runners
Green (250 runs) – 4 runners
Blue (500) – 0 runners
Number of runners who have volunteered 25+ times – 11. Well done to them.
The top 5 attendees this week were:
Barry Shackleton (Darwen Dashers) 411 runs
Karen Shackleton (Darwen Dashers) 353 runs
Janet Glover (CSSC Sports and Leisure) 317 runs
Jason Murfitt 261 runs
David Bird 225 runs
These five runners have completed 1,567 parkruns between them.
Want to give feedback? Have anything to say or want anyone mentioned in future run reports? Are there any corrections needed to this report? Please e-mail email@example.com
VOLUNTEERS – REMEMBER that parkrun can only take place weekly because of the volunteers and marshals who give up their time on a Saturday morning. If you want to get involved, email firstname.lastname@example.org. This week, we had 11 credited volunteers so thank you all.
And potential runners remember that to officially take part at Whinlatter Forest (or any other parkrun anywhere) you need to be registered at www.parkrun.org.uk but you only need to register once and the barcode they give you will be needed each week when you have finished the run. DON’T FORGET YOUR BARCODE.
Whinlatter Forest parkrun started on the 13th January 2018 with 139 runners and 13 volunteers. The course record was set the last time I visited Whinlatter at run #11 by Chris Arthur in 17:48, and the female course record was set by Emma Gould three weeks later at 19:56, which is the only time a woman has ever run under 20 minutes. There have been 2,540 different runners on the course, representing 458 different running clubs, and they have completed 4,729 runs. The average attendance is 77 every week and there have been 775 Personal Bests. The attendance record is 279. Whinlatter Forest parkrunners have completed 23,645Km (14,778 miles).
And that’s it for the report for run #61. If you fancy writing a run report, and putting your slant on it, get in touch. I’m sure the ED would love to hear from you, and it would give her another weekend off writing it herself. See you all again soon.
Barry Shackleton #lovewhinlatterforestparkrun
Special mention to Sam Ayers of Bodyfit Cumbria:
Fresh from her magnificent PB and volunteer stint, representing Bodyfit Cumbria Sam Ayers led a group of willing souls around the newly launched 10K route at Whinlatter. A sterling effort by all those who had completed parkrun before it!
For all those looking for a bit more of a challenge the Forestry 100 running series is now underway! The 10K event at Whinklatter takes place Sunday 12th May and entries are now open. If you would like to enter, you can do so here via the Whinlatter Forest website.