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Ranelagh Strava Rundown #177 : Happy New Year! 🥳

The mighty Google tells us that humanity has been celebrating the start of the new year for at least 4000 years. The number of hangovers this translates to notwithstanding, such a long history of celebration has realised an interesting variety of customs; including but not limited to parades, fireworks, watching the sun rise, swimming in the sea, making resolutions, giving gifts, eating certain foods, wearing white (Brazil), wearing polka dots (Philippines), smashing plates (Denmark), smashing bread (Ireland) and many more.

In Ranelagh-Land, our customs around this festive period seems very much to revolve around getting out there, whatever the weather, and running, walking, hiking, swimming, kayaking, cycling and uniquely, in the case of a holidaying Amrut Sharma, scootering around Anjuna beach. So, despite our Rundown break, we have been watching – and you’ve certainly given us much to write about – so here’s a (long, put the kettle on) recap of the past 3 weeks:

📅 (That was the week that was) 19 – 25 December 2022 📅

The highlight of the week (ahead of the festive weekend) was the rather large gathering of Ranelights (a profusion of?) for the traditional Christmas cracker relay, details of which you can read about here >

Those unwilling to succumb to the lure of mulled wine and mince pies admirably continued their training: Kathy Henry enjoyed ‘happy strides’, Jarryd Hillhouse had his ‘first run since Valencia marathon’, Mike Thomas did his homework with ’10 nightingales’, Jon Lear completed a half marathon time trial (1hr 45), while Samuel Harry (running for another club, but we’ll overlook that), knocked out a PB (34:02), coming in 6th at the Run Through Battersea 10k.

Others adopted a more ‘holistic’ approach to their training: Sally Minchella harked back to ancient traditions, as well as a childhood one, with a run to mark the ‘winter solstice sunset’ plus her ‘first time back to King Arthur’s stone since (she) was a kid’; Rebecca Northmore enjoyed a pre-celebratory mini HIIT session, with her ‘best (slightly impatient) workout buddy’, young baby Elsie; while Gareth Williams, Kris Davidson & Bruce Mclaren took Jesse the dog on a 50km Surrey Hills ‘funday’. Most certainly their words, not mine.

Come Xmas Eve, what better way to celebrate than with a parkrun! Across the country, there was MUCH competition for the fastest Christmas Rane-light: at ODP, Ed Forbes (20:00) and Clare Fowler (21:05) bagged two 1stplaces (overall & ladies); at Swansea Bay, Jonny Smith and James Riley nabbed 4th (17:28) & 5th place (17:30) respectively; at Bedfont, Natalie Haarer took 1st lady | 4th overall (20:46); at Pegwell Bay, Ted Mockett claimed 2nd place (16:28 PB); at Kingston, Nick Wright placed 2nd (18:06), and at Richmond, Dave Lawley took 5th(18:48).

Xmas Day was a little quieter but there was still parkrun action: at Richmond, Nick Impey (16:12 PB) and Suzy Whatmough (19:21) claimed another double 1st (overall & ladies); at ODP, huge congrats to Rosie Abbit for 1st lady (22:57) as Ed Forbes, taking 2nd(20:34), narrowly missed out on a double-double; while at Crane, Natalie Haarer took 1st lady | 5th overall (20:22). Well run everyone!

📅 (That was the week that was) 26 December 2022 – 1 January 2023 📅

On Boxing Day, some shared their holiday snaps: Ed Perry’s of ice, wind & snow at Lakeland, Michael Morris’ of mud & fallen trees in the Isle of Wight, Ann & Kevin Kearey’s of green fields & blue skies in Cherwell and Emily Jenkins’ (running a 50k ultra!) of fell ponies, the sea & a rainbow in Swansea.

Others ignored the idea of Boxing Day being a ‘chill day’: Liam Joyce started his London Marathon training, while Jarryd Hillhouse announced the ‘Seville Block has officially started’. Ah, the keenness of youth. And less the keenness of youth, and more sheer headed umm, err, ahhh… persistence?…. kudos must be given to James Ritchie, who decided to beat the train strikes by RUNNING 30+km from Chessington to Gatwick Airport to catch his flight to Scotland! Gareth Hillhouse, please take note the next time you ask Robbie for a lift to the airport.

Training saw a more casual approach with Adv 2 opting for a Christmas Pub Run, which judging by the pictures posted by Victoria Martin, was VERY FESTIVE indeed; while Inter 3 cancelled theirs altogether, opting to stay warm and out of the rain! Midweek, Sally Minchella shared James Riley’s idea of what a true love should give: a run taking in ’31 Cambridge Colleges’; Lucy Urbas had ‘a very rainy run to shake off the Christmas booze’, Ralph Street traded the heights of Norway for the (relative) flats of Richmond Park, James Ritchie showcased EPIC snow pictures in Cairngorms National Park and Bruce McLaren who (for fun we’re sure) ran 32km round Windsor Great Park & the Thames Path.

On the last few days of 2022, there was a FLURRY of activity: James Riley ran from Dolgellau to Machynlleth (as you do) in Snowdonia National Park, covering 42km and 2,583m of elevation; Dave Lawley overcame his ‘struggle to get out the door’ in the Cotswolds; Ed Forbes narrowly avoided being ‘made into a Christmas angel by a van going way too fast’; Ed Perry, Liam Joyce & Suzy Whatmough separately tackled the muddy inclines of RP; Sarah Palmer nabbed a Crown AND a Local Legend with her pacy run; Carol Aikin (25:13) & Pete Warren (35:57) raced Serpentine’s Last Friday 5k while Alberto Esguevillas capped his year running the San Silvestre 10k in Madrid with 41,000 other athletes.

In parkrun-land, Ted Mockett smashed out 1st overall at Kingston; at Crane, Kathy Henry took 1st lady (23:24); at ODP, Holger Westphely placed 2nd overall (19:39) as Rosie Abbit took 1stlady (23:52); at Bedfont, Natalie Haarer continued her 1st lady domination (21:32); at Gunnersbury, Mark Herbert placed 2nd (17:54) and at ODP, Deborah Blakemore realised her 100th parkrun RD, while Bruce McLaren clock his last mile to make 2022 MILES for 2022.

The last Strava clocked run for 2022 honour goes to Shaun Griffith, with his ‘2022 – The last Run; cold, wet & windy’ while on New Year’s Day, the first Ranelagh run of the year kudos went to Ben Anderson with his 7:57am run in Kaipatiki, New Zealand. While in park-run land, the ladies did us proud as Cordelia Parker took 1st lady at Bushy (19:45) and Clare Fowler (21:20) the same at ODP. Fab work all!


So, to the year anew. And there’s been much running this week. So much running that collectively we’ve clocked a whopping 8,056km over 888 activities. In Rundown terms, that’s quite a fair whack. The week didn’t appear to start well at all however: Liam Joyce stated ‘rolling out of bed to do burpees ain’t a vibe’; Suzy Whatmough was ‘plain snailing’, Christie Hill asked, ‘what is running?’ and even James Riley had ‘zero motivation’. I know right?!

But it quickly picked up, with Chris Lepine showing everyone how it was done with – wait for it – weight training at 6.28am, a run at 6:53am, and a morning ride at 7:11am. ON THE SAME MORNING. And whatever he’d had in his Weetabix was contagious: Suzy Whatmough went on a Box Hill fell race recce, Clare Day monstered a 5k time trial PB at track, while Sally Minchella also undertook her own Box Hill fell race recce.

Come Saturday, there was racing! Joshua Charkin (1hr 26:42) and Lucy Urbas (1hr 32:19) did us proud at the Battersea Park Half Marathon; Mike Morris placed 6th at the Serpentine Handicap race but super shout outs and all sorts must go to Gareth Williams, Bruce McLaren, Kris Davidson and Nick Drewett who had a ‘fun day out’ running 68km in the Country 2 Capital Ultra, placing 8th, 28th, 34th and 49th respectively.

At parkrun, Joe Gomes placed 3rd a Bushy (17:15); while at Bushy, James Whistler took 1st (19:05) and Rebecca Curtis-Hall 2nd lady (25:37); at ODP, Holger Wesphely (19:38) and James Riley (22:10) took 3rd & 4th respectively; at Osterley, Rick Jenner took 3rd (19:14); Natalie Haarer claimed 1stlady (20:41) at Portsmouth; while at Eden Project, Eirin McDaid placed 1stoverall (17:26).

But by and large, the action was in Lloyd Park, Croydon. NINETEEN Rane-lights descended on Lloyd Park, to celebrate Lloyd Camp’s 250thand Alex Reid’s 200th parkrun respectively. There was cake and MUD. Lots of mud. And the muddy fun & frolic didn’t stop there. After cake, many stayed on to support our men & women’s team at the Surrey XC Champs. Also held in muddy Lloyd Park.

Slipping and sliding over 12km, the men’s team were represented by Ted Mockett (46:16), Jonathan Smith (46:22), Dave Lawley (46:45), Chris Lepine (49:39) and Shaun Griffith (50:22). Our women’s team monstered the muddy 8km course to come in 7th – well done to Suzy Whatmough (32:30), Liz Kipling (34:53), Clare Fowler (36:52) and Wiebke Kortum (39:00). Special kudos to Imogen Parker-Elms (24:04) for placing 2nd in the Under 20s (6km). Great job everyone!

In closing, shout out to:

🎂 Ed Barker, who turned 50 on 18 Dec, and in true Ranelagh fashion, completed a 50 mile week. Which he, apparently, will not be repeating for ’51 next year or 52 the year after’.
🎂 Clare Fowler who celebrated her birthday on 3 Jan and on 4 Jan, ran ‘NINE nightingales in ALL the weather’. As you do.
💪 Richard Gurd who ‘felt like a knackered old man running in knackered old shoes’ but most importantly, got it done!
💪 Sally Michella who got ‘back on the horse; albeit a slightly lame one with a dodgy adductor
💥 Amanda Munro as she continues her #runeveryday. We’re now at Year 2, day 260!
💪 Hadi Khatamizadeh (1hr 20:51), Aoife Kilpatrick (1hr 34:13), Carol Aikin (1hr 35:10), Sally Bamford (1hr 38:01), Janet Turnes (1hr 57:07) and Tom Reay (2hr 08:27), as they flew yellow & blue at the Tadworth 10.
💪 Jarryd Hillhouse on running 1hr 29:59 at the Victoria Park Half Marathon.


📢 Announcements 📢

🏃‍♀️ 🏃‍♂️ Don’t miss out on your early bird entry for the Ranelagh Half Marathon (7 May) and the Ranelagh 10k (25 June). THESE PRICES WILL NOT LAST LONG. To enter, go to or

🥳 Our social secretaries Hadi & Rebecca writes: Let’s get Quizzical” – the Ranelagh quiz night is back! It’s time to take your trail shoes off and get your thinking caps on for the quiz night, led my our very own Presidential Quiz Master – Mr Ted Mockett.

Where: Ranelagh Clubhouse
When: 7pm Saturday 18 February
Why: It will be great fun

Entry fee for the quiz is £10 per person, pizza, salads and drinks are included. Teams will compete for prizes but the real fun will be taking part. All you need is a little street cred, life smarts and a healthy dose of common sense to participate in some fine banter and fits of laughter whilst enjoying some pizza and beverages.

For now, simply save the date and we will be in contact soon with details on how to sign up.


The Leaderboards:

🥇James Ritchie 162.9km
🥈Nick Impey 140.3km
🥉Gareth Williams 122.2km

🥇Suzy Whatmough 133.4km (2nd overall)
🥈Sarah Palmer 99.2km
🥉Lucy Urbas 74.1km

🥇 James Ritchie 3,579m
🥈 Ralph Street 2,549m
🔸Ryan Fisher 1,647m
🥉 Gareth Williams 1,425m

🥇 Suzy Whatmough 2,973 m (2nd Overall)
🥈 Sally Minchella 852m
🥉 Ria Woodfield 770m

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june, 2024

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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