Now for round two! Roadrunners show they’re really relay brilliant

SOME fantastic performances in round one of the England Athletics Virtual Road Relays have left Reading Roadrunners confident of a place in round two, writes Sam Whalley.

The competition, which required entrants to run a five-mile road leg, was initially scheduled to take place from Boxing Day to  January 10th but was extended to January 13th to allow more time for those clubs whose local areas had been affected by adverse weather conditions to participate. 

Club members aged 15 and over were invited to enter, and asked to run either out-and-back courses or lapped courses of no less than 1km per lap. Track laps were not permitted, and competitors were reminded to comply fully with government guidelines regarding exercise.

Team numbers were uncapped, and scoring teams were made up of the fastest four men and four women from each club, with the top 50 teams to progress to round two. With a total time of 4hrs 5mins and 51secs our eight scorers bagged a provisional 47th place in a competition which attracted 128 teams.

As usual the standard was exceptionally high, with the fastest times overall being 23:57 for the men and 27:36 for the women.

21 Roadrunners – 12 men and 9 women – rose to the challenge during the competition period. 

Scoring for the men were Jack Gregory (26:01 – 54th overall), Mark Worringham (26:10 – third MV40), Brendan Morris (28:26) and Tony Page (28:49). Mark’s time was over a minute faster than the club MV40 record of 27:25, set by Lance Nortcliff at Overton in 2016, while Tony’s was a PB by more than four minutes.

Counting for the women’s score were Katherine Sargeant (fourth FV50) 31:51), Sarah Dooley (33:53), Mel Shaw (34:41) and Liz Johnson (36:00). Katherine’s time was almost two minutes faster than the club FV50 record of 33:45, which was set by Lesley Whiley at Peasemore, and has stood since 2011.

Other notable performances were recorded by Rob Cannings (31:19) — a brave competitive comeback after he was hospitalised during the first wave of Covid — and Jane Davies (36:13), who was third FV60. Jane, Katherine and Mark all achieved an age grading of 87 per cent for their performances.

Racing solo is no easy task, so well done to everyone who took part.

When we get confirmation of the results we can look forward to round two, which will take place between and February 12th and 15th.

 

Katherine and Brian are Masters of the universe… just like Eddie!

Tony Page and Katherine Sargeant have topped the club’s results in the virtual 10k challenge set by the British Masters Athletics Federation (BMAF), writes Sam Whalley.

Aimed at getting masters athletes (those aged 35 or over) back into action after Christmas, the challenge required entrants to run one or more circular or out-and-back road loops totalling 10k, or a full 25 laps of a track.

The standard was predictably high, with the fastest man running 30:59, and the fastest woman 37:26.

Tony’s time of 36:20 earned him 16th place in the MV45 category, while Katherine (left, with Tony Streams) won the FV50 age group with 40:10, over 90 seconds ahead of her nearest rival.

Also triumphant in their five-year age categories were Brian Kirsopp (MV55) with 38:06, and Eddie Thorpe (MV75) with 52:52. Eddie is pictured, right, enjoying a well-deserved pint.

Jane Davies was third FV60 with 46:45, while David Parton was fifth MV50 with 36:49 and Helen Pool was fifth FV45 with 42:36.

There were reports of (unofficial) PBs across the club, including Becky Mellor running her first 10k, and Andrew Small beating his previous MV70 time by seven minutes, so well done and thank you to all of those who took part.

Full results are here: https://data.opentrack.run/en-gb/x/2020/GBR/bmaf-virtual-10k/event/1/1/1/

For those aged 15 and over, EA is currently hosting a virtual five-mile road relay, with four men and four women to score for each team. The deadline is January 10th, and full details are here: https://data.opentrack.run/en-gb/x/2020/GBR/earr/