Probably there are a some other Ranelagh members who, like me, strolled along to our friendly club for a lovely Tuesday night practice in Int3 on a warm summer’s night, after a few parkruns in the months before had led us to believe we could run a bit.
And then somehow we find ourselves running maybe a mob match or two, a 10k, even a half or a full marathon.
But surely I cannot be the only one who didn’t know or guess that 100-mile races along the Cornish coast – in the pitch-black of night – even existed, never mind that our own local club members might actually run them.
So well-deserved kudos to James Ritchie for running the 100-mile Arc of Attrition point-to-point along the Cornish coast from Coverack to Porthtowan, through night and day to finish 38th overall in 26:34:11 and fourth in the V50 category. There were 330 participants in this gruelling race, with quite a few retiring before the finish. James reported: ‘Amazingly good weather. Miserable terrain between Sennen and Zennor in the middle of the night, coinciding with running low on food and water. Ran with some great people. Pleased with the time – well inside even my stretch target. Great support crewing from Suzy and Magnus.’
A bit closer to home, Ranelagh fielded five ladies at SEAA XC at Beckenham Place Park over nearly 8km. Natalie Haarer came 63rd out of more than 400 runners in 30:5, Nicola Douglas ran in 32:13, Kathy Henry in 37:32, Ann Keary in 40:04 and Ruth Gledhill in 45:08, placing Ranelagh 26th overall. The men had to an extra lap or two for their own gruelling 15km but nonetheless came home smiling, with Tom Cameron in 261st place out of 665 runners at 57:58, Mark Herbert at 58:44, Chris Lepine at 59:44 and Neil Rae at 1:06:06.
The mud had dried a little from when the ladies ran there in a league race two weeks previously. One running story from last week was how our members adapted to the transition from minus to plus-zero.
Last Monday, Suzy Whatmough did 10k in 52:25 in what she described as a ‘three layers and thermal leggings day’, Narissa Vox did nearly 9km on ‘the towpath ice track’, Shaun Griffith went ‘ice skating’ over nearly 12km in Richmond Park and Charlie Harrison reported that he ‘ran with Jack Frost’. Those brave enough to venture out for training on Tuesday found it was a little warmer but temperatures dropped fast. Ed Perry ‘felt fresh and strong. 8×3 mins with temperature dropping each rep.’
By Wednesday, James Riley reported that the ponds in the park were still frozen but it had become ‘so muddy’.
On Thursday, Kelly Thomas found that doing a 5k, she became too warm in the clothes she had on! Suzy Whatmough was in Cornwall by then and did a birthday run along the coast of nearly 30km, ‘a little taster of what James will be doing tomorrow, except this will be 90km in and dark!’ Back in London, Clare Day ran north and south under Barnes Bridge for first time because yes, the new footbridge that goes under the railway bridge along the Thames at Barnes is now open at last.
Henry Fagan, one of our newest, youngest and already one of our fastest members, came fifth in the Middlesex championships, an English schools qualification.
On Friday, wisely steering clear of our truly deeply muddy lowlands, Kathy Henry, Susan Ritchie and Sally Michella took to the Surrey Hills for more than 18km, assisted by a ‘fabulous refuel in Shere’. See attached cake-pic of the week.
And by Saturday, yesterday, things were back to normal again, mostly. As Becca Ireland put it at Old Deer parkrun, ‘Felt better than last week but the mud is tough!’. Dave Lawley did his 200th parkrun at Bath and Jon Lear did his 100th. Neil Kitching did his 60th at Bushy. Ed Perry did ‘bring your own parkrun’ with the 30 or so people who turned up at Kingston, to find it had been cancelled. And congratulations to Rebecca Bissell on her first parkrun in a while, at Richmond Park. Rick Jenner came in eighth at Richmond, in 18:48.
If cakes are what you are after – and certainly they are one of my motivating factors (Box Hill is now on my bucket list!) then Osterley seems to be the go-to parkrun of choice. Ellie Lawley enjoyed ‘Ranelagh cake’ at Osterley yesterday. I was too busy slowly savouring every mouthful to think to take a pic, but actual Cake of the Week goes to Nicola Douglas who for our x-country ladies on Saturday baked and brought the most mouth-wateringly delicious chewy flapjacks iced with white chocolate and home-made raspberry jam. We are sadly coming to the end of the x-country season, but I’m definitely signing up next year again, if only for the cakes!
‘Let’s Get Quizzical!’ – Ranelagh Quiz Night : SIGN UP NOW!
All running and no play makes the Ranelagh Harriers’ athlete very dull indeed. As we all know, too much running can also make you injured, fatigued, de-motivated, cause muscle imbalances, chafing, decline in performance and much much more.
SO… let’s take the trainers off (for the night), get your thinking caps on and gather at the clubhouse on 18 February @ 7pm FOR ……… ‘Let’s Get Quizzical’, the Ranelagh Quiz Night, led by our very own Presidential Quiz Master Ted Mockett! 👍
This wonderful night of merriment and health competition is yours to experience for a mere £10/person + pizza, salads & drink 🍕 🥳
All you’ll need is some street smarts, a bit of general knowledge and the odd thinking-out-of-the-box skills to participate. We’ll guarantee lots of banter, laughter + pizza and drinks 🍻 There will be prizes available for teams to compete for but the real fun will be in simply taking part 💙
To join, all you need to do is fill in this simple Google Form: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSf6HFr2EFdBBbYe1GTsnl3A1m6_6FLn4o5tkSxEmWpG_-_4Sw/viewform?usp=sf_link
Then make your £10/adult payment to the following account by 16 February:
Reference: Your Name + QUIZ
💙 All adults are entitled to 2 drinks each
💛 Kids are welcome & will eat for free.
💙 Teams will be allocated once we have final numbers
HURRY – don’t miss out on what will be a GREAT EVENING!
Your dedicated social secretaries: Hadi & Rebecca
ALL HANDS ON DECK for our upcoming Mob Match on Saturday 4th Feb vs Thames Hare and Hounds on Wimbledon Common.
From the first mob match v Thames in November 1974, the tally so far is 21 Ranelagh wins against 26 Thames wins.
Everyone is encouraged to take part in mob matches – the more starters we have, the better our chance of victory – ultimately it’s the number of bodies on the starting line that’s the important thing. Start time: 2:30pm.
Further details can be found here: https://www.strava.com/clubs/32034/posts/23242437
🥇James Ritchie 176.1 km
🥈Nick Impey 143.0 km
🥉Michael Morris 123.6 km
🥇Lucy Urbas 72.4 km
🥈Suzy Whatmough 70.6 km
🥉Ellen Clague 62.3 km
🥇 James Ritchie 5,3408ft
🥈 Ralph Street 3,533ft
🥉 Ian Kenton 1,152ft
🥇 Suzy Whatmough 1,638 (3rd Overall)
🥈 Ria Woodfield 1,145ft
🥉 Sally Michella 876ft
1. Join the Strava group: https://www.strava.com/clubs/ranelagh-harriers
2. Log your run and give it a catchy title.
3. Check back here every week for highlights
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