September saw 268 parkrun finishes across 50 parkruns and 37 different parkrun venues. Some newly visited parkrun venues included Blyth Links, Brynaman, Bushy (Dublin), Dunfermline (Scotland), Omagh (Northern Ireland), Varsity Lakes (Australia), Milford Waterfront and Windy Nook.
Some parkrun highlights in month included Karl Johnson rounding up another 9 Phoenix Runners for a day trip to Bushy parkrun in Dublin. There was a massive turnout of 63 members running at the latest Zero to Hero graduation at Porthcawl despite testing weather conditions.
There were too many PB’s to list as we had dozens of first timer PB’s from our Z2H graduates plus a whole host from improvers and long standing members. Neil Price became the latest runner to run under 19 minutes with a 18:44 at Porthcawl. Denise Bradley got a new PB of 24:10 and set a new club age category record in the process. Claire Dunbar-Bowen ran the fastest time of any female in the club, smashing her own PB with a 22:20 whilst Sarah Littlewood also got a PB of 23:21. The Iveson’s, Phill and Stephanie both scored PB’s on the same day whilst the Salvatores. Rosie and Ken both got PB’s this month.
Well done to all the other runners who set PB’s this month whether it was your first or hundred-and-first run.
We had 134 finishers in 10K races during the month with the most popular being Cardiff 10K with 76. Niki Puleio lead our runners home in a PB of 37:59 with Ryan Evans next in 38:39 and then Neil Price setting PB of 39:23. Aled Hughes made it 4 Phoenix Runners under 40 minutes.
The PB list was huge and was as follows… Carl Price, Paul Barrett, Phill Iveson, Chris Richards, Ken Salvatore, Hannah Knight, Rosie Salvatore, Kaye Pedler, Nicola Veasey, Leanne Puleio, Cath Robinson, Jamie Puddy, Megan Apsee, Jane Collins, Sara Johns, Paul Jones, Ann Rice, Frances Hughes, Claire Williams, Joanne Cottingham, Andrea Fry, Sarah Richards and Laura Worrall. Well done to several who were running their first 10K race as well.
Swansea 10K saw 30 Phoenix Runners complete the course and lead back by Ryan Evans and Paul Smith who were under 40 minutes. PB’s included Wayne Hayhurst, Keith Coleman, Chris Bimson, Tyler Howells, Judith Jeeves, Toni Howells, Cath Griffiths, Julie Gale and Annemarie Morgan.
A huge well done to Ken Salvatore, Rosie Salvatore, Leanne Puleio and Laura Worrall who all got their second 10K PB’s of the month having achieved new personal bests in both Cardiff and Swansea.
8 Phoenix ran the ‘Beat the Black Dog’ 10K trail race which started at Ogmore Life Centre which has been a training meeting point for the club since we started in 2012. The event was to raise awareness of Mental Health issues and get people talking.
Several members also volunteered for the event. Cowbridge 10K saw 20 members run the course whilst a further 3 did the 6K option. Unfortunately a missing marshal resulted in most of the participants doing an extra 3K which was a bit frustrating for some but just think of it as extra training and bonus miles / value for money.
A quite month for half marathons with the two major 10K’s being most runners focus. However, we did have Brett Bonell, Nige Rees and Great North Half Marathon regular Dawn Hopkins took on the 13.1 mile course in Newcastle this year with Brett setting a new PB. We also had Luke Jones, Sarah Davies and Liz Sim taking on the hilly Cotswold Trail Half Marathon.
Infinity Running Events
A double whammy of the increasingly popular Infiinity Running events in month with the ‘Random Run’ on the 8th and the ‘Autumn Run’ on the 22nd. Chris Pratt notched up another 2 marathons whilst Nick Harris and David Sheard ran the marathon distance in the second event. Kris Denholm ran another Ultra, managing 12 laps for 36.3 miles.
At the Random Run there were plenty using it for Snowdonia Marathon training with Karl Johnson managing 10 miles, Fiona Evans ran 16.5 miles and Denise Bradley did 19.8 miles.
At the Autumn Run, it was a welcome return for ladies captain, Pippa Clark who ran 3.3 miles, Liz Davis and Sally Pensom ran Half Marathon distance, whilst there was plenty more Snowdon training being done with Sian Jenkins managing 10 miles, Alexis 16.5 miles, Claire Taylor, Jamie Puddy, Sharon Pritchard, Deb Griffin, Bev Sheard and Paul Barrett running 19.8 miles and Gary Loo running 23.1 miles.
The final event of the Bridgend County Running League took place on Rest Bay Beach with a 2.2 mile two lapped course. Niki Puleio lead our club members back closely followed by Paul Smith, Ryan Evans and Neil Price. With some excellent scoring from our top 15 plus 79 members completing the course, we finished second on the night to further secure our second place in the league.
I did a lengthy post on the clubs Facebook page regarding some of the stats from this season which included record attendances at 5 out of the 6 fixtures, by far our strongest top 15 performances in every event and substantially better overall scores for each event.
Adrian Pearce, Paul Smith and Aled Hughes teamed up for the Welsh Road Relays. Adam Rowe ran the ‘Beat the Bore’ 8 mile event. 13 members ran the 16 mile Roman Run. Karl Johnson, Tyler Howells, Toni Howells and Jay Howells ran the inaugural Newport 5 miler. Steve Loveluck ran a 6 hour looped ultra and clocked up 36 miles. Anneliese Loveluck was first female overall in the Dare Valley Ultra. A 12 hour event where she managed around 60 miles.
Although it pains me to mention a triathlon in a running club blog, I will make an exception for an Ironman event. Helen Griffiths became an Ironman finisher for the first time whilst Kirsty Evans and Steven Clatworthy completed the crazy feat of endurance for the second time on the challenging course around Tenby and the surrounding area.
Yet another month of huge participation in events and everything from Zero to Hero graduates running 5K to 12 hour Ultra marathons. Over to Chris to Chairmans Runners of the Month.
Chairman’s Runners of the Month
As the weather starts to turn slightly and we start looking towards the end of the year our spirits are not dampened. Still out in force at events and still training well.
Although we are not all about running fast, we still celebrate it. We have many runners who continue to push themselves to make improvements in performance. Many of these are runners who have run for many years and start to wonder whether times will continue to fall or holding on to seasons bests will be the way of the future. When improvements of significance start to come after consistent running for several years it is often a measure of hard work in the background. A renewed vigour for improvement. Gaining an understanding of what might have led to times not falling in the past. I have run with this guy many times and we’ve deliberated the plan of attack in races. He has known for some time that he often goes out too fast and has learnt to bring that under control and measure the whole distance. A new thinking. A renewed understanding of pacing a race. A desire to beat himself. With PB’s resulting in dipping under 19 minutes for a 5k and 40 minutes for a 10k this month he is a worthy recipient of this accolade. You will rarely see a man with such a determined face as he pushes his body to the finish line of a race (even if the expressions often result in a great deal of hilarity from his wife). I am absolutely delighted to award my September Chairman’s Male Runner of the Month to Neil Price. Keep up the good work Neil.
As for the ladies, I agonised over this months achievements. So many worthy potential winners. I try and avoid repeating people if at all necessary but one event brought me into a dilemma of choice. I’ll be chastised again by some for recognition of multi-discipline achievements but it still involves running on the back of a significant build up. Such worthy possibilities and split two ways with very little place to separate so I chose to give it to someone who I haven’t acknowledged before. For many reasons this athlete is incredible. An exception to the rule I would say. It’s not often you find someone who can avoid training until almost the 11th hour and then absolutely smash it! It’s not the route that would be advocated by our coaches and, indeed, by our very worthy winner either. With a young family and other commitments, it’s the age old tale of life dictates training patterns and priority always falls with the family and Ironman is an event that requires substantial training in every discipline throughout the year. One of the toughest Ironman courses in the world it commands respect from everyone who takes it on. Her second tackling of the event and another successful completion! Absolutely outstanding. A huge well done to my very worthy winner of September Chairman’s Female Runner of the Month, Kirsty Evans. Well done Kirsty, looking forward to seeing what comes next!