So, taking a break from Wimbledon, and topping up my suntan, time to let you know what's been happening around the club in June.
This month, as well as the ever present Parkrun, we've had the first two Summer League fixtures of the season, whilst members have also turned out for a couple of five milers (Wimbledon, and the Concorde), two 10ks. (Osterley Park, and the Triffic Trail), and a half marathon (St.Albans).
Starting with the Summer League, we were 'up and running' in style at Gunnersbury Park on the 4th with a record club turnout of 20 (beating the previous best of 19 set at Ealing (2007), and equaled at Harrow in 2010) with three members, Ade, Praveena and Geraldine making their debuts, plus four guests (Cynthia, Joelle and Jesper, 'our regulars'. and Hsiang-Ju). On a very warm day, David(42.32) and Tony (43.38) set impressive times to lead our perspiring troops home, whilst Geraldine, sensibly, 'bowed to the conditions' joining Bev on the sidelines to give welcome moral support after a lap. Pleased to say, we also managed to raise teams for both the Senior relays, our men and women finishing 6th and 7th respectively to score a very useful 300 points for the club. Incredibly, given the conditions, three new club records were set by Tony, Liz and Yvonne. Overall winners were the hosts, Ealing Eagles(4,335) with Queens Park Harriers (4,231) second and Mornington Chasers (4,087) in the final 'podium' spot, whilst we assumed our customary seventh position ahead of Hayes & Harlington's sole representative! Presentations for the 2016 season were made after the event with Liz (1st), Yvonne (1st), Tony (2nd) and myself (3rd) picking up awards in our respective age catagories.
Two weeks later, we then had 15 members 'toeing the line' at Headstaone Manor Rec, with a further two debutants (Gunnersbury guest, Hsiang-Ju, plus Alistair) in our ranks: Peter Nagy (44.07), making a welcome reappearance for us, this time leading the way with David and Tony in 'hot pursuit' Sapna meanwhile becoming our first runner to tackle the league with a buggy! Again we put out two relay teams (this time a men's and a B1) and finished in a very respectable fifth place overall, ahead of both Serpentine and Dulwich Park Runners (and, needless to say, H & H!). Ealing Eagles (3,962) and QPH (3,869) once again filled the top two places with the hosts, Metros (3,740), in third. Thanks to Angela and Kay who, this time, joined Bev in our 'cheerleading ranks'.
Away from the League, our month 'kicked off' with Tony and Victor tackling the second race of the Wimbledon Trail Run series on the 7th (Tony again picking up the MV60 prize), and continued with Peter, Mary, Rita and I heading to Hertfordshire for the St. Albans Half Marathon on the 11th whilst Liz took on the Concorde 5. The following Saturday then saw Tony, Sean, Angela and Rita enjoying the pleasures of the Osterley Park for the post-Parkrun 10k., before I ended off proceedings at Trent Park on the 25th (whilst a number of members joined Metros' for an educational jog round the Capital). Can safely say St.Albans was my least favourite race for a good while, way too warm, and I was a minute off a PW (gets depressing when the 2 hour pacer surges past you!).
On the home front meanwhile, 26 made it to our Run Wembley "Thank You" evening, and third handicap , on the 13th. Unfortunately, Nicole from St. Luke's was unable to be there, but updated that around £8,600 had been raised for the charity so far. As for the handicap itself, Alistair (scratch)showed the field a clean pair of heels, with Molly leading the scoring runners home in another PB, ahead of Hansa, and Victor. Means that, at the halfway stage of this year's race for the Docherty Shield, David is heading the table with 69 points with Victor (63) in close pursuit, and Molly third on 58.
Moving on to Parkrun, no fewer than sixteen members turned out for Gladstone Park's tropically themed fifth birthday celebrations on the 24th, swelling the overall turnout to 207, whilst there was an average attendance of 178 for the month's four runs in NW10. Good meanwhile to see Craig making his Parkrun debut at Canons Park on the 3rd.
Well, think that about covers it for this month except to bid a very warm welcome to our latest recruit, Hsiang-Ju.
Next Month: the Dulwich and Regents Park Summer League fixtures, fourth handicap, and much, much more......
Footnote: Pleased to report that our grant application to the Wembley National Stadium Trust was successful (many thanks again to Victor for pulling our bid together at very short notice), and we've been awarded £1,000 towards training courses and the purchase of equipment.