A fantastic half marathon organised by Fairlands Valley Spartans. A wet morning but hundreds ran the 13.1 miles around Stevenage and 35 of them were Spartans. The club provided dozens of voluntary helpers including marshals, lead bikes, water stations and refreshments. Others helped out including the Rotary Club of Stevenage, Grange Rotary Club, Stevenage Scouts, Stevenage Air Cadets and the Garden House Hospice giving their time freely to make the event a huge success.
This year the Stevenage Half Marathon raised funds for the Garden House Hospice, the Spartans Charity of the Year.
The event hosted the Hertfordshire County Half Marathon Championships for veteran runners.
FVS had individual success in two categories. YUKO GORDON won GOLD for women aged 65 plus in 1 hour 44 minutes 59 seconds and JIM BROWN won GOLD for men aged 70 plus with 1 hour 57 minutes 23 seconds.
The Spartans women’s team took the GOLD team medals with GEORGIE HOOPER (1:41:17), YUKO GORDON (1:44:59) and PAULA DUNNE (1:57:19) (teams of three and runners aged 35 plus). In the process Georgie ran a PB which was 7 minutes and 41 seconds quicker than her last half at Stafford earlier in the year and Paula reduced her PB (personal best) by 4 minutes 41 seconds.
The FVS men won SILVER with DAVID HARRIS-CHERGUIT (1:17:57), ANDREW PATTERSON (1:18:10), GRANT RAMSAY (1:29:04) and PAUL SHELLEY (1:40:02) (teams of four and runners aged 40 plus).
GABRIELLE O’BRIEN and HARRIET SMITH were both running their first half marathons and both did brilliantly. Gabbie was the fifth senior (i.e. young adult 18 – 34) woman in the race with 1:44:04 and was 89th overall. Harriet came in with 1:51:27.
NICK GILL and ROSS GALLAGHER ran together encouraging each other. They finished 30th and 31st in 1:31:05 a personal best (PB) improvement of 2:56 for Nick and 1:35 for Ross.
ROB WRIGHT enjoyed a chicken run in fancy dress but still finished in 1:47:01 and was presented with a custom made chicken medal! He was even asked for selfies with other runners. Next year he plans on giving out autographs! DEREK CORNELIUS was exactly 100th in his first half with 1:46:31.
While WENDY THARANI had a brilliant run and managed a season’s best (SB) with 1:59:22 coming fourth in her county category, TIM ROBINSON said that he enjoyed the local support from the many volunteers. Unfortunately the Beachy Head Marathon from two weeks previously was still in his legs and together with the rain and long incline at 7miles faded badly through miles 8 and 9. At mile 10 he found some motivation and kicked on for three sub 9 minute miles to finish a touch over 2 hours which was a year best result.
Relatively new Spartan JANE WADEY ran her first ever half marathon distance in (2:34:11) and had the following to say – I just wanted to say, it was my first time of running a half marathon and the support of the marshals and everyone on the route was amazing. I was happy with my time as I had not even thought what time to aim for. Thanks especially to Sharon and Tony as they escorted me on the last 2 miles, and the ladies at the finish who gave me water and then Pete and the ladies who gave me flapjacks and a brilliant cup of tea at the end!
The biggest PB was by JUDY KING who took 23 minutes 48 seconds off her time with 2:52:44. Judy ran with JANE WHITROW who accomplished a SB in 2.52.27.
The overall winners were both from Ware Joggers. Kevin Francis was first man in 1 hour 15 minutes 29 seconds and Katy Woodward first woman in 1:25:19.
New York Marathon
JACKIE DOWNES finished the New York Marathon with a chip time of 5:02:02. An amazing time for what was said to be the hottest New York Marathon ever!
CHRIS HOLLAND had an incident with his heart rate after an insect bite at mile 5, but after help from the medical tent, he finished in a chip time of 4:56:38.
All 35 Spartans in the Stevenage Half Marathon
|Pos||Name||Last Name||Chip||PB, etc||Comments|
|5||David||HARRIS-CHERGUIT||1:17:57||x||4th county MV40|
|6||Andrew||PATTERSON||1:18:10||22||5th county MV40|
|21||Grant||RAMSAY||1:29:04||22||5th county MV50|
|77||Georgie||HOOPER||1:41:17||x||4th county FV35|
|89||Gabrielle||O’BRIEN||1:44:04||First half||5th senior in race|
|159||Wendy||THARANI||1:57:35||SB (0:15)||4th county FV45|
For the weekends parkrun results for the Spartans please follow this link – Parkrun Results 5th November 2022