For you – any pace, any distance, any terrain

Ranelagh Strava Rundown #173

I cannot endure to waste anything so precious as autumnal sunshine by staying in the house.

So wrote Nathaniel Hawthorne (1804 – 1864), one of the greatest fiction writers in American literature, best known for The Scarlet Letter (1850) and The House of Seven Gables (1851). Hawthorne then goes on to describe the beauty of autumn and how it produces, ‘so pleasant an effect on feelings’; ending his journal entry with, ‘so I spend almost all the daylight hours in the open air’.

And that is exactly what you’ve done this past week. Admittedly there was little to no sunshine to speak of at the start of the week, but it didn’t stop you. All in all, inclement weather and waning light notwithstanding, you’ve collectively clocked an admirable club total of 6,172 km over 755 activities! Well done everyone.

So, let’s see what you’ve all been up to…


🔷 Monday dawned misty and cool: James Riley went for a ‘magical mystery tour’ round Richmond Park; writing later, ‘wonderful how the mist changes the Park. It becomes an even more magical playground when all your certainties disappear in the mist 😀 Found six groups of 🦌 in the first 15 minutes’. Ed Perry was a little less lyrical, simply saying, ‘can’t see the river’. Later that evening Kelly Thomas went for a ‘towpath mooch with a pair of Voxes’, but many opted to stay indoors; leaving Dave Lawley (as always) to sum up perfectly the type of Monday it was by saying, ‘weekends are far too short’. Yep. It was that kind of Monday for most.

But not for 3 athletes: Julian Sampson, who drew many, many, many Strava squiggles up and down Nightingale Lane on his innocuously title ‘Evening Run’, bagging 195m of elevation alone; Ralph Street who ran ‘home by grus’, covering 18km and bagging 444m of elevation; and finally, our dear Bruce McLaren, who cracked out a 20 miler (32.38km) with an EXTRA 2kg weight. Come on guys – Monday is supposed to be recovery day! 🤦

🔶 On Tuesday, it rained. The kind of rain that prompted Susie Dent (she of the Dictionary Corner in Countdown) to tweet, ‘A reminder, should you need it of the ‘thunderplump’ (19th century): a heavy downpour that soaks you to the skin in seconds and leaves you thoroughly, well, thunderplumped.

A few brave souls were thus duly ‘thunderplumped’: Vierka Leaf who ran ‘soggy morning miles’, Amanda Munro (now onto her 2nd year & 206th day of #runeveryday), Charlie Harrison with his ‘progressive wet dog run’, Margie Harrison (sans dog?), Jonathan Moore and James Riley (yes, he runs quite a bit).

James Graham was not only ‘thunderplumped’ but also posed the question, ‘In the woods. It’s dark. You see the eyes. It starts barking and then comes haring towards you. It’s big, and aggressive. Do you a) turn and run, b) grab a stick and prepare to fend it off, c) stand still, get arms out of the way and hope for the best?

Answers in the comments below please and yes, it was later ‘revealed to be a German Shepherd’. For those concerned, James was seen to be running the very next day, confirming that he did survive his encounter.

🔷 Wednesday was like Monday. Although it was less a ‘meh’ and more a ‘bleargggh’, but the weather didn’t help much: Dave Lawley discovered his ‘legs (were) left in Oxshott’, Suzy Whatmough found ‘rain and sun but no 🌈, Clare Fowler felt like she was ‘losing fitness, not gaining it’ but admirably persevered with her session and ‘got it done’, James Russell braved ‘10km in the rain 🌧’, Rick Jenner did some steady miles but was ‘not feeling it at all’, and Gareth William found ‘not many folk out tonight #drownedrat’.

But it was not all soggy misery. Elsewhere round the world, Jon & Sue Lear found plenty of sunshine and warmth with their walk round ‘the streets (and hills) of San Francisco’ and Marianne Malam had a beautiful ‘evening wander to the Danube’ in Hungary. We’re NOT jealous at all. NOT. ONE. BIT.

🔶 On Thursday Liam Joyce set out at 6am, stating it was ‘wet, windy and wayyyy too early’. No dear Liam. Wayyyy to early is Chris Lepine’s run at 5.34am 🤦 In Portsmouth Natalie Haarer ran ‘into the wind’, Lizzie Broughton asked ‘is it ever going to stop raining’, Clare Day had ‘heavy legs’, Nicola Douglas was ‘shaking off a bug’, while Shaun Griffith ‘was fighting the bunged up feeling’. So much for that precious autumnal sunshine as per Hawthorne’s quote 🤷

🔷 But by Friday, we finally saw that autumnal sunshine 🥳 There was still the aftermath of the windy weather before: Rue Turner felt relieved he ‘didn’t fall on (his) a*se’, Cordy Parker noted a ‘big tree (had) fallen down’ in Bushy, Sonia Pham was ‘grateful for hats and layers’, but James Riley (yes, him again) was moved to say he felt ‘on top of the world, looking down on creation ☀️’. Although by on top of the world, he really meant halfway up Richmond Hill.

🔷 By the weekend we not only had sunshine – we also had racing! Parkrun Land saw many great efforts and shout out to: Nick Wright (Kingston | 17:54 | 4th overall), Nick Twomey (Frimley Lodge | 18:09 | 2ndoverall), Kris Davidson (Old Deer Park | 18:55 | 3rd overall), Jonny Smith (Mole Valley | 19:06 | 2nd overall), Clare Fowler (Bicester | 19:39 – PB! | 2nd lady, 13th overall), Liz Kipling (Exmouth | 19:41 | 3rd lady, 12th overall), Natalie Haarer (Great Salterns | 21:03 | 1st lady, 4th overall), Richard Willoughby (Newent | 21:36 | 3rd overall), Ria Woodfield (Guildford | 21:54 | 3rdlady, 29th overall), Melanie Thomas (Crane Park | 24:04 | 2ndlady, 25th overall), and Paul Sinton-Hewitt (Durlston Country Park | 25:38 | 4th overall). Kudos too to Pete Vox (5k PB 30:03), Fiona Jones (100th Parkrun) and Andrew Brown (600th parkrun & 250th volunteering). Utterly amazing work everyone.

In other races, please applaud the efforts of: Michael Everard (Sri Chinmoy Golden Leaf 10k Battersea Park | 39:45), Eirin McDaid (Lobster Lollop 10k Cornwall | 37:20 | 1stoverall), Wiebke Kortum (Sussex Downs Half Marathon | 1:58:59 | 15thlady, 3rd in category), Marianne Malam (Lake Balaton Half Marathon Hungary | 1:56:51), Shaun Griffith (Hampton Court 10k | 40:30) and Emily Jenkins (Pen Lyn Winter Ultra 60km | 7:25:10). Over at the Kempton Park 10k, there was a wonderful 1st, 2nd and 4th Ranelagh finish from Ted Mockett (34:53), James Whistler (35:02 – PB!) and Ed Perry (36:33) respectively. Also flying the club flag at Kempton Park was Jon Holloway (10k | 1:13:15 | 5thV50) and Linda Holloway (5k | 37:58 | 2nd V55). Well done everyone!

🔶 And we end this week’s rundown with some cross-country racing, namely the Southern Cross Country London Championships at the iconic Parliament Hill Fields. Our Ranelagh representatives were; for the ladies: Suzy Whatmough, Sarah Palmer, Cecily Day, Nicola Douglas, Carol Aikin and Ruth Gledhill. Representing the men were: James Riley, Dave Lawley, Carl Assmundsen, Tom Cameron, Gareth Williams, Chris Lepine, Neil Rae, Jonathan Moore, Mick Lane and James Ritchie. By all accounts it was a true cross country setting, with whatever mud was missing from the previous weekend’s Surrey Leagues well and truly present at Parliament Hill. Results are still somewhere in the ether but in the meantime, huge kudos to all who competed!

In closing, shout out to:

💙 Those making their way back from injury: Liam Joyce, James Russell, Simon Martin, Mike Morris, Alex R, Rebecca Bissell, Jo Marshall and Richard Gurd.
💛 Our illustrious president, Ted Mockett who competed in the Inter Financial Services ‘XC’, placing 5th overall and 2ndV40. As he put it, a ‘pretty good afternoon at the office’.
💙 Ryka Khatamizadeh for his 12:13 PB at Osterley Junior Parkrun and Emily Michella who beat her older siblings at Moormead Junior Parkrun in 13:56!
💛 Ann Kearey as she begins a well deserved taper ahead of her Malaga Marathon attempt in December.

🔷 🔶 🔷 🔶

📢 TOMORROW IS THE LAST DAY to book your place at the Ranelagh Harriers Christmas Party on Saturday 26 November 🎄 You snow the drill – get booking @

Partners and friends are most welcome so don’t be elfish, let’s gather together to make some great Christmas chemis-tree 🎄🤦‍♀️ We’re Claus-itive this will be a night to remember!

A round of Santa-plause, please for our lovely social elves – Hadi and Rebecca. We love them a whole watt for branching out and organising this night of myrrhh-y-ment for us! If you have any dietary requirements, please contact them so they can advise accordingly.

📢 MORE VOLUNTEERS REQUIRED: For the Ranelagh Cup Schools Cross-Country Race 26 November.

💙 TIMINGS: Approx. 1.45pm until 4.30pm (latest)
💛 SKILLS: No experience necessary, just your support and commitment
💙 ROLES: On course or at race start/finish.

As always, the success of any event, big or small, hinges crucially on the support of volunteers, so please email Andy Bickerstaff: or Narissa Vox: NOW. PRETTY PLEASE….


The Podiums for this week:


🔸Nick Impey 132.8km
🔸David Criniti 120.1km
🥇 Ralph Street 117.8km
🥈 James Graham 106.3km
🥉 Mark Herbert 101.2km

🥇 Sarah Palmer 76.0km
🥈 Suzy Whatmough 64.9km
🥉 Liz K 64.9km


🥇 Ralph Street 3,098m
🥈 James Graham 1,968m
🔸David Criniti 1,482m
🥉 Al Whatmough 1,277m

🥇 Ria Woodfield 1,001m
🥈 Kate Gadd 622m
🥉 Jo Marshall 577m

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Image by Shaun Griffith


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In this section:

Surrey cross country league standings

LeagueTeam PositionFull details
Ladies Div 17/15league table
Men Div 18/9league table
Ladies Div U159/16league table
Men Div U15/U1716/18league table