Chris Mason

Gate Gallop 10k, 2022

Gates no barrier to Steve!!

The yellow vests were again to the fore in the latest chapter of the Burton and District Summer Road Racing League, the Gate Gallop 10k. Over farm tracks and footpaths runners’ progress was also challenged by a strong wind and, in the second half of the race, the need to tackle five strategically placed stiles. These were no barrier though to Steve Bullock who revelled in the conditions as he led the group home in tenth place overall in a superb chip time of 38.53. The consistent Dan Bower, Andy Hawtin and Jamie Green gave great close support as they finished in twelfth, thirteenth and fourteenth places respectively in times of 39.20, 39.41 and 40.42. A solid men’s team performance was completed by Steve Green, Richard Nash, and David Green as they stopped the clock in 42.04, 43.09 and 43.29, respectively. The major success of the day though belonged to the Club’s women as the collective performances of Sara Insley, Katie Dennis and Tracey Glover led to them winning the women’s team prize with Sara Insley’s 45.45 also securing the WV35 prize from teammate Katie Dennis’s 47.27 and Tracey Glover the WV45 prize in 50.21. Back to the main race and the talented Chris Hanman made light of the conditions with 43.50 getting the edge, on this occasion, over Micheal Walters in 44.55. Men’s Club Captain Andy Orme, who is learning to manage his racing effort more consistently, ran well for 45.41 before one of the performances of the day came from Neil Swift who made light of his limited racing experience to record an excellent 46.42. The resurgent MV60. Colin Mee ran superbly for his 46.50 with Matt Clemson completing the top fifty finishers with 46.58.  Nathan Holmes with 47.37 led a group home comprising VM70 age category winner Chris Mason with 48.08, Steve Leafe with 48.30 and Ross Ballinger with 49.28. The improving Becky Moult and Rom Chambard recorded the same time of 51.16 with Clive Lamb, with a superb debut performance not far behind in 52.00. There was an even closer inter-club battle involving Paul Glover’s 53.11, Martin Bullock, on his return from injury, with 53.26, Paul Hudson with 53.32 and Jay Darnley and Katarina Compton who battled right to the line to record the same time of 53.36. The theme continued with Dave Walters, Tony Richards and Emily Atkins recording competitive times of 54.56, 55.04 and 55.26, respectively. Emma Sharp and Sarah Walters ran well to duck under the hour mark with 58.36 and 59.26 before Linda Dakin in 61.10 led a group home comprising John Pegg, Katie Bullock, Sarah Green, and Becky Atkins who recorded 63.23, 64.44, 69.42, 69.42 and 69.54, respectively. The biggest cheer of the day was reserved for Mary Sharp whose 71.37 secured a well deserved VW65 age category prize. Sara Sneath, Ellie Dickson, and Karen Wilks finished together in 73.46 as did Teresa Swift and Julianne Walters in 74.13 before Pauline Cooper gave her usual maximum effort to complete the Club’s finishers in 75.57.

Posted by Chris Mason in Race Reports

Trail Marathon Wales and Ramathon

Hitting the Trails

Mark Harriott, Jenny Laing, and Kelvin Taylor were in Coed Y Brenin on Saturday for Trail Marathon Wales. The 26.2-mile route has 4,700ft of ascent with Jenny Laing finishing in 4h 51m for 16th female and ninth in age category running an extraordinarily strong second half. Mark Harriott ran 4h 57m for 104th position and 10th in the MV50 class. Meanwhile running in the Half Marathon distance, which is no less challenging, Kelvin Taylor completed the 13.1-mile route in 2h 51m

Much, much closer to home a number of the Club’s runners took part in Derby Half Marathon, with Danial Bower the Club’s sole representative in the 5-mile option. Dan showed though what a terrific runner he is in finishing fourth overall in a chip time of 29.04. In the half marathon you could almost throw a blanket over Robbie Cresswell-Howe, Sam Bassett and Mark Slade as they recorded excellent chip times of 01.27:26, 01.27:27 and 01.27:46. Also well to the fore in their age categories were the husband and wife duo of Tracey and Paul Glover as they recorded very respectable times of 01.42:53 and 01.45:35.

Posted by Chris Mason in Race Reports

Washlands Relays 2022

Ash on the glory leg!

It felt like another significant step in the return to normality on Wednesday night as local runners gathered for the 2022 edition of the popular Washlands Relays. The Club’s yellow vests were well to the fore both numerically and when it came to the allocation of prizes. After never leading until the final leg, race debutant Ashley Hurdman stormed home in the joint fastest time for the 2.1mile circuit of 10.33 to lead the team to the senior men’s prize. This was very much a team triumph with Dan Bower’s 11.36, Chris Pearson’s third fastest leg of the night 10.54 and Steve Bullock’s 11.38 all contributing to a wonderful team performance. Not to be overshadowed, the Club’s veteran women’s team of Kelly Knight {13.30}, Katie Dennis {14.12} and Jennie Laing {13.36} secured third place overall and the first veteran women’s team prize. Also, prominent in the men’s race was the team of Seb Van Dijk (12.14), Mark Farrar (12.36), Sam Bassett (12.35) and the willing Dan Bower (12.05) whose combined efforts led the team to eighth place. The mixed vet’s team of Rob Eaton, Sarah Insley, Mark Slade, and Andy Hawtin stormed to a well deserved first place in their category and twelfth place overall with an excellent combined time of 50.26.  The Club’s strength in depth was highlighted by the consistency of the team of Jacob Edmonds (12.06), Nathan Fagan (13.20), Robbie Cresswell-Howe (12.30) and Chris Hanman (13.19) whose combined efforts led to a very creditable fifteenth place finish. The team of Rich Miller (13.10), Mark Harriott (13.55), Matt Clemson (13.04) and, making his racing debut for the  Club, Richard Nash (13.19), ran well for eighteenth place before one of the oldest teams, in terms of combined age, comprising Chris Mason, Colin Mee and Steve Leafe but, given a much needed boost by Rob Eaton finished in 23rd place in a combined time of 56.12.    Although unrelated but united by the Green surname the team of Steve (12.23), Sarah (20.25), Jamie (12.46) and David (13.19) gave everything for a 27th place finish. The very much related Walters team of Micheal, Sarah, Julianne, and Dave rolled back the generational differences to finish in a combined total of 68.14. The women’s team of Christina Hawtin (14.53), Kat Compton (15.38) and the quickly improving Emily Atkins with 14.31 ran well for eighth place in the women’s race as did Sophie Pickett (19.01), Nikki Reeves (18.18) and Katie Bullock 17.09), whose combined efforts secured twenty sixth place in the same category. The experienced team of Mary Sharp (21.02), the evergreen Cath Johnston (25.48) and Pauline Cooper gave their usual maximum effort to clinch thirty third position in their category. The mixed team of Rom Chambard (12.39), who even at this early stage of the season looks to be one of the candidates for most improved male runner, Emma Sharp (16.36), Becky Moult (15.05) and Lisa Wright (15.07) stormed home for thirtieth place ahead of the combined efforts of Andy Orme (14.01), Colin Sharp (19.14), Barry Ross (14.15) and, making his racing debut for the Club, Darren Potter (13.47) in thirty eighth and Jamie Green (12.34), Linda Dakin (19.22), Amy Dakin (16.49) and Steve Green (12.55) in fortieth. Showing what a great job the Club Captains had done in balancing the teams the team of John Pegg, Tony Richards, Tracey Glover and Paul Glover finished in forty fourth place with a combined total of 63.19, the team of the fast starting Ross Ballinger, Jay Darnley, Ian Archer and MV70 Tony Phillips with a combined total of 65.08 finished in forty fifth place and the team comprising the returning Shane Chapman, Ellie Dickson, Ash Wootton and Paul Hudson in forty seventh with a combined total of 68.11. Concluding an enjoyable night of running action was the mixed team of Shane Stanton (17.55), Jane Ward-Stanton (20.40), Becki Atkins (19.27) and Barry Saunders (15.01) for a respectable fifty second place finish.

Posted by Chris Mason in Race Reports

Uttoxeter Half Marathon, Wymeswold Waddle and the Birmingham Great Run

Stevie does not wonder!!!!

The Uttoxeter Half Marathon is widely recognised as one of the toughest road races in the region, but this did not deter twenty-two runners from the Club toeing the start line for this latest leg of the 2022 Burton and District Summer Road Racing League. Steve Bullock, last year’s winner of the Club’s most improved runner award, showed he has no intention of resting on his laurels as he was first back for the Club in a superb distance personal best of 01.23:07 for 12th place overall. Danial Bower also continued his excellent early season form for 14th place in an excellent 01.24:01. Steve Green took advantage of the aerobic fitness he has gained in training for the recent Brighton Marathon with a chip time of 01.29:15 while John Morgan and Mark Harriott, who are both experts in maintaining and developing aerobic fitness, recorded excellent chip times of 01.29:07 and 01.30:47, respectively. Matt Clemson, Chris Hanman and Micheal Walters all ran well for good times of 01.31:23, 01.33:24 and 01.35:22, while David Green, someone who has tackled ultra-distance recently, should be well pleased with 01.35:27. Andy Orme, after a difficult start to the race, came home strongly in a very respectable time of 01.38:40 before Katie Dennis, showing no ill effects from the recent Manchester Marathon, led the Club’s women home in an excellent 01.39:40 and a well deserved second place in her age category. Steve Leafe was also second in his age category in recording 01.39:55 before a slight gap to Ross Ballinger, who conquered the course in 01.50:46. David Walters and Jay Darnley were close on chip times recording 01.55:09 and 01.55:49, respectively. Katarina Compton was very close behind in 01.55:57 with little separating Sarah Walters and Karen Wilks as they stopped the clock in 02.06:29 and 02.06:43. In a day of great age category performances the redoubtable Tony Phillips was third MV70 in 02.18:40 before John Pegg, Pauline Cooper and Julianne Walters gave great accounts of themselves over an ultra-difficult course with chip times of 02.25:40, 02.36:34 and 02.40:50. For Pauline it was also another well deserved third place finish in her age category.  

There was also a large Club contingent who ventured into deepest Leicestershire countryside to take part in the Wymeswold Waddle 5. Leading the group home was the strong running Rom Chambard in a superb 31:21 with the resurgent Colin Mee rolling back the years recording a chip time of 34:49. There was then a small gap to a group comprising Lisa Wright, Paul Glover, Mark Nugent, Emily Atkins and Tracey Glover who finished within thirty seconds of each other in chip times of 37:26, 37:31, 37:43, 37:49 and 37:54 respectively. For Paul and Tracey Glover, it was an opportunity to get the previous weekend’s Stratford Marathon out of their legs. Ian Archer and Andy Meadows finished closely in 38:06 and 38:25 with Becky Moult also putting in a robust performance to record 39:39. Recent well-deserved recipient of the Conkers Parkrun Community Award, Kev Clarke showed there is still energy in his legs in stopping the clock in 40:05. Emma Sharp, a popular recipient of the sort after Club place in this year’s London Marathon, made a solid start to the build up with 44:38 with Linda Dakin not far behind in 45:24. Becky Atkins, Cath Johnston and Teresa Swift enjoyed their morning out in the countryside as they worked hard for times of 49:21, 64:05 and 64:06 respectively.   

On a busy running day the Club’s runners were also in action on the streets of Birmingham joining 13,000 others in the Great Birmingham Run. Mike Nash, Mark Farrar, Andrea Beaty and Robert Read tackled the half marathon option while Jamie Green and Chris Mason settled for the 10k offering. In good running conditions after recovering from the rigours of the Paris Marathon Mike Nash ran a superb PB of 01.23:22. Mark Farrar, on his debut at the distance, recorded an excellent chip time of 01.28:35 while Andrea Beaty, on her competitive debut for the Club, showed what a superbly consistent runner she is in recording 01.38:14. Robert Read continues to improve as his creditable time of 02.14:52 shows. Jamie Green, a week after a storming run at the Stratford Half Marathon, and despite being one of a number of runners at the front of the race mis-directed near the finish, stopped the clock in the 10k in 39:48 while Chris Mason finished second in his age category in 44:50

Posted by Chris Mason in Race Reports

RITF, Derby 10k, Brighton Marathon and Millennium Way Ultra

Kelly takes some catching!!!

On a perfect day for running Club members were in action at a number of venues. The majority were at Conkers where the Club staged the second race in this year’s Burton and District Summer Road Running League, the Run in the Forest 5. Despite having responsibility for staging the race the Club still managed to field strong teams as emphasised by the fact that Chris Pearson and Kelly Knight had emphatic victories in the men’s and women’s races. For Kelly it was her second race win on consecutive Sunday’s after leading the way home in last Sunday’s Cathedral to Castle 10 miler. Kelly’s time of 33:06 emphasised her excellent, current form, while MV40 Chris Pearson’s 27:38 confirmed his standing as currently the Club’s fastest male runner. Chris Baxter in 29:55 was next back for the Club followed by hard running performances from Matt Clemson, Robbie Cresswell-Howe, and Mark Harriott as they stopped the watch in 32:03, 32:43 and 32:46 respectively. Chris Hanman ran strongly for his 33:03 with Jacob Edmonds and Rich Miller in close order in 34:26 and 34:30. Sarah Insley continued her really promising performances during the cross country season with 35:12 before Paul Glover in 37:05, Tracey Glover in 38:04, Emily Atkins in 38:36 and Andy Meadows in 38:38 all ran solidly around trails they all know well to duck under forty minutes. Karen Wilks, Linda Dakin, Tony Philips, Sam Skidmore and Sarah Green gave their usual maximum effort in recording 44:14, 45:14, 48:46, 48:54 and 53:26, respectively.

There was some terrific inter club racing at the Derby 10k with five runners ducking under the forty-minute distance benchmark. Danial Bower led the way home with a superb chip time of 36:41 with Mark Slade and Rob Eaton only seconds back in 36:45 and 36:58 with Jamie Green and Sebastian Van Dijk breathing down their necks in 37:47 and 38:23. Rom Chambard showed what a brilliantly consistent runner he is over a variety of distances as he recorded 40:08 with Nathan Fagan close behind in 40:33. Ross Ballinger ran well for his 45:26 as did Anthony Richards, Emma Sharp and Matt Collins as they recorded chip times of 51:24, 54:00 and 56:23 respectively.

Steve Green and Ash Wooton tackled the classic marathon distance at the popular Brighton Marathon, and both should be really pleased with their efforts as they recorded very creditable times of 03.09:03 and 04.30:22

Last but not least David Greene and Lucy Cartwright tackled the 41 miles of the Millennium Way Ultra and completed it in a magnificent 09.06:00.   

Posted by Chris Mason in Race Reports

Fradley 10k, Sinai XC, Draycote Water 10k and the Knighton 20

Dan’s the man!!!

Members of the Club were in action at several venues on Sunday morning with the majority at a dry, but windy Florette Fradley 10k. The contingent was led home by a top forty finish from Dan Bower in an excellent 36.49 with Jamie and Steven Green also ducking under the forty-minute benchmark with excellent times of 37.49 and 39.02 respectively. David Green also secured a well deserved top hundred placing as he stopped the clock in 42.21 just edging out Kelly Knight in 42.31. Men’s Club Captain, Andy Orme was his usually consistent self in recording an excellent 42.44 with Ross Ballinger recording a very creditable chip time of 44.41. Runners took advantage of the flat, two lap course around the quiet Fradley country lanes to record some excellent times including Sarah Walters, Linda Dakin, and JJ Jones as they all dipped below the hour mark in recording 54.41, 56.10 and 59.30 respectively. MV70 Tony Phillips, a runner who has achieved the amazing milestone of running a hundred marathons, led the next group home in 60.59, with Richard Gee stopping the clock in 64. 02 before Graham Blackshaw, another with a superb marathon running career to look back on, recorded 65.37. Sarah Green should be well pleased with her efforts as she gave everything for her 67.01.

The Derby Runner Cross Country League wound to a halt on Sunday and with individual category prizes already decided it was left to Rich Miller, Mark Slade, and Mark Farrar to fly the flag for the Club over the arduous course at Sinai Park in Burton. All did brilliantly as they rounded the season off in style with ninth, fifteenth and eighteenth place finishes respectively. While not having a strong presence at all races over a long season Colin Mee, Chris Pearson, Lisa Wright, and Andy Orme all picked up well deserved individual prizes at the award’s ceremony that immediately followed the race.

Katie Dennis and Jay Darnley travelled to Northamptonshire to take part in the Draycote Water 10k and ran together to achieve a personal best for Jay as they stopped the clock in 52.32 and 52.33 respectively.

Mark Harriott prepared for his busy marathon running season at the Knighton 20 and his 02:28.44 showed that his preparation is well on track.

Posted by Chris Mason in Race Reports

Boothorpe Cross Country

Mud, mud glorious mud!!

In the latest leg of the Derby Runner Cross Country League (Derby/Staffs) runners experienced four seasons in one day with wet and windy being the dominant conditions. This was the Club’s own event and the National Forest site at Boothorpe provided a proper cross-country challenge. Team wise this was the strongest performance by the Road Runners in the series so far with the Club’s men’s and women’s teams coming out on top in their respective races. Leading the way in both races were third place finishes for the super strong Chris Pearson and Jenny Laing. For the men’s team, as he has done all season, Steve Bullock provided brilliant support as he finished in sixth place with Seb van Dijk, Steve Green and Rich Miller packing brilliantly as they collected the 12th, 14th, and 17th finishing tokens, respectively. Sam Bassett looked super strong throughout as did debutant Jacob Edmonds as they finished in 22nd and 30th places with the steadily improving Mikey Walters completing the men’s team finishers in a well run 32nd place. In terms of the women’s team Katie Dennis put in her usual committed performance as she finished in 22nd place with creditable performances from Kat Compton in 34th and Emma Sharp in 52nd as they completed the women’s team finishers.

In the women’s race Sarah Green gained valuable race experience in finishing in 70th place while the irrepressible Pauline Cooper finished in 75th as she performed the important race role of sweep person on the course. There was great packing below the team finishers in the men’s race with Andy Hawtin’s 36th place finish epitomising the ‘never say die spirit’ of the Club as he dragged back a substantial number of places on the downhill finish after looking a spent force on the long uphill climb. Rom Chambard collected the 39th place token with MV60 Colin Mee, just one place back, in 40th. The resurgent Mee has had an excellent series and could end up collecting age group prizes in both divisions after already securing the Leicestershire division with one race to go. Andy Orme ran strongly for 42nd place as did Dave Green in 49th and Steve Leafe in 58th. Ross Ballinger, Martin Bullock, and debutant Jay Darney completed a good morning of racing in scenic conditions as they finished in 63rd, 65th, and 84th places, respectively.

Posted by Chris Mason in Race Reports

Martin Shaw Woods XC

Tasty battle at the front!!

In the first Derby Runner Cross Country fixture of the year at Martin Shaw Woods near Groby, Leicestershire entrants from the Club were back to pre-pandemic levels, which was also reflected in formidable team performances and some great inter-club competition. Leading the way was the battle between Chris Pearson and Steve Bullock with the former having the edge on this occasion as they finished in excellent 11th and 14th positions, respectively. Andy Hawtin and Dan Bower also made welcome returns to cross country action as they finished in 42nd and 51st places with Steve Green and Rich Miller also scoring valuable team points as they collected the 65th and 74th place finishing tokens. Chris Hanman in 82nd and Robbie Cresswell in 88th place completed the club’s team finishers in a strong men’s team showing. Micheal Walters ran strongly to finish in 98th place followed closely by the resurgent MV60 Colin Mee in 102nd place. Mee is having a purple patch now and his sure-footed technique seems to be well suited to the challenges of cross country running. Breathing down his neck for most of the race was Nathan Fagan, who finished one place further back in 103rd. Men’s Club Captain, Andy Orme and David Green finished in 116th and 121st positions before the improving Ross Ballinger and Steve Leafe fought another close battle as they finished in 147th and 148th positions, respectively. Relative newcomer Martin Bullock ran well for 164th place before Andy Meadows, Nigel Atkins, Kevin Clarke, and David Walters gave everything as they completed the Club’s finishers in the men’s race in 180th, 199th, 202nd and 207th places, respectively.

Fittingly, women’s club captain Lisa Wright led the Club’s women home in a hard running 36th place finish with Emma Sharpe, Sarah Walters, and Julianne Walters giving great support as they completed the team’s finishers in 76th, 98th, and 130th places, respectively. Giving their usual maximum effort little separated Sarah Green, Helen Clarke, and Theresa Swift as they collected the 138th, 141st, and 142nd place tokens, respectively.

Posted by Chris Mason in Race Reports

Anslow Cross Country

Peerless performance by Pearson

On current form Chris Pearson is arguably the Club’s best male runner, a fact he reaffirmed at Anslow on Sunday, as he led the Club’s contingent home in the latest leg of the Derby Runner Cross Country League. In what was the first occasion, mainly because of other commitments, that the Club have been able to field a full men’s team Chris’s 6th place finish was supported at the sharp end by Steve Bullock in 7th and Mark Slade in 10th. Rich Miller ran well for his 22nd place with Chris Hanman a couple of places back in 24th, Micheal Walters in 33rd and the strong running David Green in 38th. Walters must be amongst those male runners in with a chance of securing the ‘most improved runner’ prize at the Club’s upcoming annual award’s ceremony. Fittingly Men’s Club Captain Andy Orme’s 40th place completed the team’s men counters a day after he had completed the amazing achievement of four hundred Parkruns. The resurgent Colin Mee finished in 48th place with Ross Ballinger not far behind in 51st. MV60 Steve Leafe in 59th, newcomer Martin Bullock in 62nd and Dave Walters in 89th completed the Club’s finishers in the men’s race. There were also some really strong performances from the Club’s women with Katie Dennis finishing in a superb 11th place, women’s captain Lisa Wright in 16th and Sarah Walters in 28th .

Posted by Chris Mason in Race Reports

Matthew Walker 10k and Tissington Trail Marathon

Rom earns his pudding

Rom Chambard got his rewards for excellent recent form as he led the Club’s contingent of nineteen home with a personal best of 40.38 in Sunday’s Matthew Walker 10k. On a cold crisp morning, where a Christmas Pudding was the reward for all finishers there were also top fifty finishes for Micheal Walters and David Green as they recorded chip times of 41.14 and 42.48. Andy Orme was his usual consistent self in recording 42.51 before Colin Mee secured a well-deserved MV60 first place prize of a bumper Christmas hamper with 43.09. The improving Ross Ballinger stopped the clock in 44.53 with the determined Katie Dennis leading the Club’s women home in 45.22. JJ Jones and Andy Meadows blew off the racing rust as they finished in 48.06 and 48.52 respectively before David Walters used his recent marathon training to beneficial effect as he finished in 49.11. Robert Read, the experienced Kev Clarke, Emma Sharp, Sarah Walters, and John Pegg finished in close order as they recorded chip times of 51.55, 52.36, 52.46,53.41 and 56.54, respectively. A little further down the field Julianne Walters and Jan and Roger Cobb also had the satisfaction of admiring their Christmas Pudding’s together as they recorded very creditable chip times of 67.05, 67.42 and 67.42. Helen Clark and Teresa Swift supported one another throughout the race and were rewarded with the same chip time of 76.16.

South Derbyshire Road Runners marathon man for all seasons was in classic distance action again as he tackled the Tissington Trail Marathon in a more than respectable 03:28.28  

Posted by Chris Mason in Race Reports