A few squirrels made the journey to Watford on Wednesday evening for the penultimate Open track Meet of the year hosted by Watford Harriers. With a few supporters to cheer them on Darren Matussa and John Auld were running. Darren raced in the earlier 1500m race 3 of 15 and finished first in a winning time of 4:56.50. Later on in the evening, both John and Darren raced in the 3000m race 1 of 2. John Auld finished his first race as a V35 in under 10mins having had his birthday the day before - finishing in 2nd with a new PB of 9:52.12. Darren Matussa finished 10th in 10:37.50.
After recently joining 2nd claim for the London based Vets AC, David Annetts competed in the Battersea Park VAC 5 mile race walk where he finished 1st with a new PB of 43:15.
The bank holiday seemed to get the Squirrels out on tour at Parkrun. Linda Aird ran 26:49 at Guildford. Ellie Scott (23:48) at Norwich. Darren Matussa 22:51 at King's Lynn. Brian Judkins (33:58) at Sedgefield. Vincent Wright (21:13) at Ganavan Sands. Jo Sherry (24:19) at Weymouth. Closer to home, in Stevenage. Richard Harbon was first squirrel home in 20:18 followed by Steve Lummus (22:53), Oli Garbas (23:37), Matthew Davies (25:22), Sheila Leavy (28:17) and Pat Norris (34:37).
North Herts Road Runners ‘ Andrew Leach confirmed his status as one of the country’s leading veteran athletes with second place in a superb time of 1:13:30 at the Kimbolton Half-marathon. Leach’s scorching performance places him second in the national rankings for the 50-55 age-group.
Adam Wilson and Alan Hazelhurst used the same event as part of their marathon training and enjoyed the route around quiet Bedfordshire and Cambridgeshire lanes, finishing in 2:01:00 and 2:01:04 respectively. Both are planning to return to this well-organised event next year.
Matt Davies chose Reykjavik for his debut marathon and found the cool Icelandic conditions, impressive coastal scenery and absence of major hills to his liking as he clocked an excellent 3:44:34 for 289th place.
Steve Lummis was delighted to record a new 5k personal best with 21:58 at the St Albans Parkrun.
Jo Summers tackled the 27-mile Leila’s Run in Welwyn Garden City, completing the four-lap course in 4 hrs 41 minutes.
Sunday saw three North Herts Road Runners test out the new Stopsley 10 mile off road race which took the runners over a lovely rural course, with some challenging hills. The squirrels were successful in tackling the off road terrain with Chloe Lucas winning the open women’s race and Linda Aird first FV55 with Miranda Morgan 2nd FV55.
A break in the weather meant there was a scurry of squirrels enjoying parkrun’s at the weekend with most heading to Stevenage where James Keogh lead them home in 19:20, Richard Harbon 20:30, Vincent Wright 22:52, Joseph Sherry 24:04, Claire O’Sullivan 24:31, Lucy O’Connor 25:42, Helen Giffin 27:43, Carina Quayle 30:23, Geoff Pettengell 33:21, Clare Hooley 35:21 and Naomi Parkinson 36:15. Wimple Estate parkrun Matthew Davies 24:43, Norwich Ellie Scott in 23:48 and Rodding Valley Darren Matussa 20.40, Cleethorpes Lucy Sinclair 27:18, Ellenbrook Fields Chris Poole 24:10. Adam Bowller clocked up the fastest time of the day at Burnham and Highbridge parkrun finishing 2nd in 17:08.
David Annett’s took part in Centurions Bury 20 Race Walk on Saturday 5th August. He finished the 20 mile course in 4th place with a time of 3:32:17 and was 3rd in the men’s race.
This last Saturday was of course the first Saturday of the month so it saw 137 runners competing in the ‘First Saturday of the Month’ 5k NHRR race around Norton Common, Letchworth. The race was won by Peter Males of Hitchin running club in 17min 59 seconds, with his Club Mate Anna Fake coming home as the first listed female in 39th place in a time of 22:30.
23 NHRR Squirrels took part (only possible once all the marshalling posts are covered) with Stuart Overton finishing as the first NHRR man in 18:14, Andy Mutton18:31, Nick Malpeli 19:06, James Keogh 19:26, John Cooper 20:49, Vincent Pasturel 20:59, Manvir Parmer 22:08, Lewis Green 23:15, David Baker 24:12, Naomi Parkinson finishing as the first NHRR female in 25:01, Lucy O'Connor 25:21, Paul Phasey Paul 25:34, Nicole Barker 26:05, Lucy Hurley 26:08, Paul Bowal 26:23, Ian Sutcliffe 26:42, Adam Wilson 27:30, Helen Giffin fresh from Transplant Games successes in 27:34, Allison Blunt 28:15, Lucy Sinclair 29:09, Shiela Leavy 29:15, and Ali Mottram 33:35.
The final places were taken by Alison Parker and Ruth deNoojer who both posted a time of 43:30. That might be some minutes behind the first place but it’s a ‘race for everyone’ and they were clapped and cheered home having made it around the course. Everyone starts somewhere and the only really hard part about running is getting to the start line in the first place, We hope to see them again.
Elsewhere Chris Poole finished the York Parkrun in 23:26, Oliver Garbas finished the Westmill Parkrun in 21:14, in Kettering Steve Williamson finished in 21:24, Richard Fox ran Stevenage Parkrun in 26:01 and Linda Aird in Hereford ran 26:14 with Stephen Lummis running the very hilly Tring Parkrun in 24:19. Dickie and Jo Harbon took Part in a Loch Lomond Park Run and both finished first in their agegroup classifications with Dickie finishing in 21:22 with his wife Jo chasing him home in 24:24.
Jo Summers set herself a personal best time of 4 hours 54 minutes in her 7th entry to the 26 mile circular route of the Dovedale Dipper and finished as the second lady and the first female Vet home. With some big hills in there its some great running.