No less than 26 Spartans including several first timers enjoyed almost ideal running conditions as they all completed the London Marathon.
Achieving a championship qualifying time GRANT RAMSAY finished in 2 hours 42 minutes 22 seconds. That put him in the top 1% in the field at 404th and 67th in his category. The second of three Spartans, a fantastic achievement, to beat the three hour barrier was ANDREW PATTERSON in 2:47:55.
JASON ANDERSON ran nearly perfect splits taking 12 minutes off his personal best to finish in 2 hours 52 minutes 28 seconds. He went through halfway in 1:26:08. Jason collapsed near the finish line last year. No problems this time.
NATALIE LAWRENCE was the fastest female from Fairlands Valley in 3 hours 19 minutes 38 minutes. An incredible race considering she had her third baby just eleven weeks ago. Three other Spartan women beat four hours. They were NICOLA KENNEDY in 3:42:18; MICHELLE REEVES in 3:43:22 and KERSTIN WEINER in 3:56:28.
Marathon first timers CLAIRE EMMERSON and SOPHIE COWAN met where the starts merged about three miles into the race and helped, and chatted, each other all the way to the finish. Claire took 4 hours 30 minutes 55 seconds and Sophie 4:35:14.
JENNY GARRETT was another Spartan first-timer coming in with an impressive 4:18:33. She ran a perfect debut marathon, with all 5K splits evenly paced. Jenny went through half way in 2.09 and finished race in 4.18. An amazing debut. Fairlands Valley Spartans are known for preparing runners from ambition to finishing the London Marathon and celebrated more first time successes with MARK COLLINS in 3:40:06 after an injury-interrupted preparation, JENNY PAUL in 4:47:12, WAYNE McMILLAN in 6:02:55.
BRIAN WHITE was 16th in the Vet (60 plus) category with 3:15:05 and TRUDIE MOLLOY ran a new personal best (PB) of 4:50:21.
Dozens of Spartan volunteers helped make the event possible by working beyond the finish line getting the correct kit to tired runners after their 26.2 miles. Well done and thank you the Fairlands Valley baggage buses crew.
The other Spartans making it to the Pall Mall finish line were PETER SMITH 3:17:05; RICHARD KENNEDY 3:21:42; DEAN CARPENTER 3:33:27; ANDY PRIOR 4:07:33; CAROL PAUL 4:25:57; DEREK WOOD 4:34:39; ERICA GRAYSON 4:43:07; MARK and CALLUM BEASLEY both in 5:14:30; TONY ARGYROU in 5:32:21; and LUCY WALSH in 5:46:59.
|1011||JASON ANDERSON||18-39||2:52:28||PB (12 minutes)|
|8243||MARK COLLINS||18-39||3:40:06||First marathon|
|17651||JENNY GARRETT||45-49||4:18:33||First marathon|
|20842||CLAIRE EMMERSON||45-49||4:30:55||First marathon|
|21881||SOPHIE COWAN||18-39||4:35:14||First marathon|
|24906||JENNY PAUL||50-54||4:47:12||First marathon|
|25621||TRUDIE MOLLOY||45-49||4:50:21||Personal Best|
|36425||WAYNE McMILLAN||40-44||6:02:55||First marathon|
Andy Jay ran the Southampton Half Marathon on a perfect morning for running.
He got around the one lap course in 1 hour 52 minutes 59 seconds, finishing 1080th out of 3748 runners. The organisers of the event put on a fantastic festival of running, hosting a 10k, half marathon and full marathon all on the same day.
Five Mile Walk
On Tuesday evening in Battersea Park, DAVID BOWKER took part in the first of five races in the Veterans Athletic Club five mile walk series. He finished sixth in a new personal best of 51 minutes 25 seconds.
Fastest Spartan of the parkrun weekend was CRAIG HALSEY. He went to St Albans where he was first finisher in 16:40. MARK GOODWIN has trained well in recent weeks and achieved a new course PB at Panshanger where he finished 33rd in 21:45.
At Stevenage, DANNY HUKIN was the first Spartan home, finishing second in a time of 19:08 as part of a longer run. NICK GILL was 16th in 21:46 with MARTIN DUDLEY 31st in 22:50. There were also top 50 finishers for GARETH COWELL (22:55), DARREN EMMERSON (23:53) and PAUL MAGUIRE (23:56). The other men in action at the venue were JAMES KILROY (25:22), KEN JUDE (25:38), JIM BROWN (27:41), ROBERT EVANS (28:06), SIMON SYPULA (28:25), JOHN McCALL (29:01), MICHAEL ANDREWS (29:27), SEAN MILLWOOD (30:20), STEVEN DOBNER (36:50) and JAMES SOUTH (39:34).
PENNY SCHENKEL was completing a first ever parkrun and was first Spartan woman to finish in 27:54 for 17th place. TRACY PEZ (28:59), KAREN PALMER (29:20) and SHARON CROWLEY (29:44) also gained top 50 finishes. HILARY DAVIES (31:44), SALLY PHILIPS (32:40) and LISA JERROM (35:56) were the other Spartan ladies running in Fairlands Valley Park.
Further afield, DARRYL STEVENS ran 36:54 at Brockenhurst while ANOUSKA GREENAWAY was at Worthing and finished 2nd in 20:05. Finally, DANIEL SUTTON ran 23:16 at Yeovil Montacue while VERITY FISHER finished in the top 20 at the same venue in 25:44.
Many Spartans will be enjoying a busy programme of races, social and training events over the next few weeks. The opportunities include the County 1500 and other track championships in Stevenage on Monday 1st May. Others are:
- Serpentine 5K in Hyde Park on Friday 28th April.
- County 1500 and other track championships in Stevenage on Monday 1st May.
- Herts County Five Mile Championships for Seniors at Pednor on 1st May.
- EMAC Track and Field at Bedford on Wednesday 3rd May.
- Dereham 10 (ten miles) on Sunday 7th May.
- First Mid Week Road Race League match in Bishops Stortford on Wednesday 10th May.
- Ross Peers Half Marathon on Sunday 14th May.
- Summer Solstice 10K at St Albans on Tuesday 16th May.
- Stirling Marathon on Sunday 21st May.
- Second Mid Week Road Race League in Stevenage on Wednesday 24th May.
- EMAC Track and Field at Cambridge on Wednesday 7th June.
- Third Mid Week Road Race League in Hitchin on Wednesday 14th June.
- Herts Veteran 10K Championships at Welwyn on Sunday 25th June.
- Fourth Mid Week Road Race League from Ridlins on Wednesday 28th June.
- EMAC Track and Field at Milton Keynes on Wednesday 5th July.
- Mob Match at Welwyn Garden City on Thursday 13th July.
- Fairlands Valley Challenge from Stevenage on 15th and 16th July
- EMAC Track and Field at Stevenage on Wednesday 26th July.
- Fairlands Valley Relays in Stevenage on Thursday 27th July.
- Herts Senior 5K Championships at Hatfield on Wednesday 30th August.
- Herts Veteran 5K Championships at Hatfield on Wednesday 13th September.
- Herts Senior 10K Championships at Standalone on Sunday 1st October.
- Peterborough Half Marathon on Sunday 8th October.
- Stevenage Half Marathon on Sunday 22nd October.
- St Neots Half Marathon on Sunday 19th November. Enter fast.
- Hertfordshire Five Mile Championship for Veterans at Hatfield on Sunday 26th Nov.
- Bass Belle 10 near Royston on Sunday 26th November.