Three Spartans took on and conquered one of the hardest races in the calendar on Saturday. MADDIE PRITCHARD, PETA WILSON and DAVE BOWKER were at the South of England Athletics Association (SEAA) cross country championships at Parliament Hill Fields on Saturday. The first climb is immediate and lung busting straight after the start. Over the first hill and it was straight into the mud.
Maddie and Peta ran the eight kilometres senior women’s course with Maddie finishing in 44 minutes 26 seconds and Peta in 51:28. Dave Bowker battled round 15K (9.3 miles) of hills and mud and finished in 82:07.
Fighting strong winds SIMON JACKSON ran Friday’s 5K race round the Serpentine in Hyde Park. Despite a last minute decision to race he was third in his age group and thirteenth out of the 245 finishers in 17 minutes 16 seconds.
Who Will It Be?
Will it be Iris, Julie, Maddie, Sam, Suzy, Tracy or Yllka? Will it be Barry, Bernie, Craig, Grant, Jason, Jim or Steffan? Who will be the club champions for 2015? Come along to Fairlands Valley Spartans Presentation Evening, Dinner and Disco which will be at Chesfield Downs Gold Club from 7.30p.m. on Friday 26th February. Tickets are just £20. Go to www.fvspartans.org.uk to book yours.
TAMSIN McLEISH completed the Cancer Research London Winter Run 10K in 1 hour 28 minutes 35 seconds, her first event in a Spartan vest.
If you are not in it – you can’t win it!!
Roger Biggs had a bad day at the office when running the Funchal Marathon in Madeira on Sunday.
It is not flat anywhere on the Island. The course started with 3.5 hilly laps, before dropping down to sea level to complete the marathon distance with 4 shorter laps. By now temperatures were on a sharp rise, with Roger really feeling the heat. Roger was overtaken late on leaving him to be the last person to finish. Despite this, Roger ended up with a trophy for winning his age group with a time of 5 hours 39 minutes 34 seconds.
The highlight of Saturday’s results from the 5km Parkrun circuit has to be at one of the fastest courses in the area, Bedford. At the County Park, Craig Halsey finished second out of 334 runners in 16 minutes 59 seconds but couldn’t keep up with the winner who was from the RAF and finished in 16:11. Natalie Lawrence finished sixth overall and was first female in 18:36 whilst Tim Saban finished 22nd in 20:49.
Down at Panshanger Parkrun in Hertford, the Spartans were out in force again. Out of the 223 runners who took part, first Spartan home was newbie Mike Green in 20:16 finishing 13th. Thomas Sauka gained a course PB in 21:41 (22nd) whilst Tracy Pez gained a new course PB in 23:02 (31st). She was fourth female. Other Spartans to complete the cross-country course were Tim Robinson in 24:26 (49th), James Kilroy in 25:13 (60th) Jeanette Collins in 28:09 (107th), Lesley Jive in 28:15 (111th), Olwen Batty in 28:46 (122nd), Carole Shredwick in 29:43 (136th) and Heather Moloney in 31:19 (156th).
The Gunpowder Parkrun near Waltham Cross saw 116 runners with Spartans Daniel Sutton finishing 28th in 22:45, Mark Allen 29th in 22:50, Verity Fisher was third female and 37th overall with a time of 24:06 followed by Emma Kinsey in 25:21.
Many Spartans will be enjoying a busy programme of races, social and training events over the next few weeks including the:
- Watford Half Marathon including the County Championships for Veterans on Sunday 7th February.
- Fifth and final cross country league race on Therfield Heath on Sunday 14th February.
- Handicap 5K in Stevenage on Thursday 18th February.
- Serpentine 5K in Hyde Park on Friday 26th February at 12.30p.m.
- Spartans Presentation Evening on Friday 26th February. Tickets only £20.
- County Veterans Cross Country Championships on Sunday 13th March (probably Watford).
- Finchley 20 on Sunday 13th March.
- Handicap 5K on Thursday 17th March.
- Serpentine 5K in Hyde Park on Friday 18th March.
- Essex 20 including Intercounties on Sunday 20th March.
- Sport Relief on Sunday 20th March.
- Maidenhead Easter Ten on Friday 25th March.
- County 20 Miles Championships at Oakley on Sunday 3rd April.
- Flitwick 10K on Sunday 17th April.
- London Marathon on Sunday 24th April.
- County 1500 metres open and veteran track and field championships in Stevenage on Monday 2nd May.
- Pednor Five (including County five miles championship for veterans) on Monday evening 2nd May.
- Halstead Marathon, including Hertfordshire County Championships for seniors and veterans, on Sunday 8th May.
- Relays in the Park, our 3K Relays in Fairlands Valley on Thursday 28th July.
- Stevenage Half Marathon, a Stevenage 70 event, on Sunday 6th November.
- County Five Miles Open Championship in Hatfield on 27th November.
Join The Spartans
Live in or near Stevenage? Like running? Fairlands Valley Spartans is your local running club and is on the up! The club was voted the UK’s Best Running Club in 2010. It now has hundreds of members and encourages participation by all. The Spartans have a varied training programme to suit those who want to run 5 kilometres through to full marathons.
The Spartans weekday training sessions are on Tuesday and Thursday evenings. Go along to the new sports centre at Marriotts School – a Sports College, Telford Avenue, Stevenage (SG2 8UT) at 7p.m. Up to five running groups go out on training nights – there will be one to suit you!
The Spartan Starter group starts from Marriotts at 7.30p.m. every Monday (except public holidays) and 7p.m. every Thursday.
Most long Sunday morning training sessions start 9a.m. sharp. Spartan track training sessions are held at Ridlins Athletics Track, Woodcock Road, Stevenage most Saturdays from 9.15a.m. There are events to enter every Sunday. Newcomers are very welcome – those who have not yet done very much running might prefer to start with a Thursday, Saturday or Monday session.
Try a few sessions before joining. Membership is only £37 per year, £25 without UKA affiliation. Concessions are available. Membership forms are available on the Spartans website www.fvspartans.org.uk Please ask if you would like a paper copy. You can also join online.
If you want to know more about the Spartans please contact Jim Brown (0793 968 7509), Andy Neatham 0777 197 5499 and 01438 816889; or Karen Palmer (07734678566) or visit their website www.fvspartans.org.uk