Meet Our Team Captains


Phil Reay – Men’s Team Captain.

I moved to Reading from Newcastle almost 20 years ago and it’s the place I now call home. Having first joined Reading Roadrunners in 2010 it’s an honour for me to now be Men’s Team Captain.

As a schoolboy I competed in the County Championships at 100m, 200m and Long Jump, however, my true love is being outdoors on an adventure. I enjoy cross-country and being out on the trails. My favourite distances are marathons and ultras. I’ve completed over 50 marathons and a number of Ultras including the 2016 Marathon des Sables, Comrades Up and Down runs and Pilgrims Challenge.

I’m currently training for The Spine Race (268mile non-stop ultra) in January 2018 and working to ensure Reading Roadrunners are well represented, inclusive and competitive in every race we enter.

I’m excited for the year ahead. We’re a fun running club and have the right blend of talent to compete strongly in the Championship events as well as a fantastic facility at Palmer Park with a good coaching and social set-up to develop and encourage members of all abilities.

If you’d like to provide me with some feedback or have an idea then please contact me. You can ask me anything:

Sam Whalley – Ladies Team Captain

I have been a member of Reading Roadrunners since 2015. I had barely ever exercised before I moved to Reading from London in 2006, then found that living near a lake and so many parks made it so much easier to get out there and run!

I trained for a few 10ks, and ran my first half marathon in 2010. Then the combination of a dodgy knee and teacher training workload meant that I put running on the back burner for a while (I can’t imagine doing that now!). My interest in running was rekindled when David Walliams swam the Thames. I was so inspired that I entered my whole family into the Sport Relief Mile, and we trained together.

On race day, my husband and I realised that our children (twin girls aged 9, and a boy of 12) were actually really good at running (we could barely keep up), and it grew from there. As a family, we became regulars at Woodley parkrun, where I am now the Event Director, and were motivated to enter more and more races.

I met many people who were Reading Roadrunners, and was intrigued by the camaraderie of the green vests, and secretly envious of the support they always received in races. I joined just after my first marathon (I got a ballot place for London on my first attempt – result!), and have never looked back.

Being a Reading Roadrunner has taught me how to warm up and stretch properly, how to pace myself, that I even have different paces, how to run up and down hills, and that I can be a valuable member of a team. I never thought I would love cross country, but I do. I never thought I would run solo along an unsigned stretch of the Ridgeway, but I have. I never thought I would want to spend a whole weekend running and camping, but I can’t help but join in, every year.

As captain of the ladies’ team, I aim to encourage as many female members as possible to have a go at representing the club at new distances and events – mud, hills, camping and all; I look forward to running with you!

Both of our Team Captains can be contacted on