Masters Report - 31st October 2016

Ben Reynolds, Kent League and Richard Bamford

Ben Reynolds M50 World Champion 5000m at Perth 2016

“Woke up to squally rain showers – and it was cold! Definitely not what was in the brochure. I hadn’t packed for this. Things perked up a bit by the afternoon but it was still very windy and rather chilly. I had a lot of time to kill at the stadium and I restlessly searched for somewhere dry, warm and sheltered, eventually choosing to lie down in the men’s changing rooms. Checked my pulse – 42 – not sure whether that was a good thing or a bad thing.

I watched the older boys battle the wind and concluded this was not a day for honest, brave leadership. With hip numbers fastened they marched us in numeric order to the start only to let us do some strides down the back straight so that they had to repeat the numeric roll call to get us back in order. Long pause while we waited for the tail end of the previous race to finish. An Argentinean was walking his last lap (he finished in almost 28 mins – what is that all about?).

Off we go and a bit of scramble to the first bend. Bashir Hussain (he of Stockport Harriers fame with an illustrious past) went out like a madman and had 10m on us after 200m. He then went backwards until he dropped out. Meanwhile I was relieved that Anders Dahl (SWE) took the lead at a reasonable pace and I took up my station in his slipstream. Bruce Graham (AUS) sheltered behind me. They were both medallists in the x-c earlier in the week so I knew they were the competition. Anders got a bit cheesed off that he was doing all the work so veered out into lane 2 on a couple of laps to encourage me to take over. I’m afraid to say I followed him into lane 2 and would have followed him to lane 9 had he been in any doubt. He got the message and put his nose back to the g.

I’m told we dropped the rest of the field after about 4 laps. I had my big-race head screwed on and avoided the distraction of checking my time or worrying about what the others were up to. I was vaguely aware that they screwed up the lap counter for about 4 laps. It conflicted with the electronic counter but they got back in synch eventually. I was more concerned with chopping my stride to avoid clipping Anders’s heel.

4 laps to go and I thought I should probably make a move - but 4 home straights into the wind seemed a tall order. I prevaricated.

3 laps to go and I thought I should probably make a move – but again thought better of it.

Eventually with 1,100m to go I sort of drifted onto Ander's shoulder and then finally mind and body got in synch and I picked things up. I’m told there was no response from Anders or Bruce and I quickly opened up 30m. I never looked round but was pretty sure they were nowhere near. I could hear the commentator and there was nothing to indicate any danger. I think I took the bell in 14.42 and thought a sub-78 would get me under 16 into respectable territory. I fear my legs had other ideas and I was rather distressed to see the clock tick over 16 as I crossed with line with rather wobbly legs.

Lots of very nice post-race comments from strangers who it seems had enjoyed seeing a rare change of pace. Got my quokka (western Australian rodent cuddly toy) at the medal ceremony where I still have no idea what to do with myself during the national anthem (a slow and stately version).

Now for the 10,000m on Tuesday where I think the medallists are likely to be the same.”

Kent League Somerhill 28th October 2016

Another good turn out by the Masters section of the club at Somerhill Kent League match.

Unusually in the Mens race a number were important scorers in the 12 to score team (Graeme Saker, Antony Crush, Alan Buckle and Andy Wood) helping the team to finish second.

Alan Buckle and Anthony Crush

Graeme paced his efforts well moving through the field steadily and finishing first M50. Antony Crush bravely set his stall out early with a strong start and held on well for 79th place, well up compared to his Stanhill farm finish. Alan Buckle M55 making his club debut showed his ability as his finished (86th) just ahead of Andy Wood (87th) who put the last two years of Somerhill disasters behind him.

James Winnifrith M40 was also making his debut and was impressive in 98th place, Dan Crush finished strongly after deciding against keeping up with his brothers early pace. Tobin Bird was making his club debut however he had sprained an ankle recently so was cautious on the lumpy ground. Brian Buckwell, Duncan Ralph, Maurice Marchant and Frank Czarnowski will all be stronger for the hills of Somerhill!

In the ladies Lucy PK was first W50 to finish in 34th place. Antonia Skerritt was close behind 37th on her debut showing that she will be a great asset to the W35 team. Nina Ridge and Rachael Fagg both ran strongly to contribute to the team 6 to score 2nd.

Antonia Skerrett

Next Kent league is at Sparrows Den on the 12th November at Sparrows Den (Not Senior Women). The Women next race Kent League at Danson Park on the 26th November.


Richard Bamford Beachy Head 10K

Richard appears to have had a great run at this challenging course coming 39th out of 438 in a time of 48.40. The course goes steeply up from Eastbourne, then appears to have a lovely downhill towards Birling gap before the challenging return to the top of Beachy Head before a fast downhill 1.5k to the finish.

Introduction to Vets (35+) Sprint training, Sunday 13th November 10.30am at Tonbridge School Track

Iain Presnell will be taking this session for about 45 mins, followed by relay talk and practice with Richard Christian, Mark McAllister (and perhaps Dave Hull)

Everyone who would like to be involved in sprinting and the relays is welcome to come along. We also plan to establish a regular weekly timetable for a vets sprint group for the future, so will welcome your input to ensure that it suits as many as possible while fitting in with when the club is allowed use of the track. Click here for details.

Kent Vets Cross Country Championships Dec 3rd Dartford Central Park

I would like to start hearing who is planning to race in what is the main vets race of the winter for most club members. No one should feel they are too slow or not good enough. We have some new members particularly in the ladies who will help to strengthen our teams, PLEASE make yourselves available, we can win medals.

Categories are M40-49, M50-59, M60-69, M70+
W35-44, W45-54, W55-64, W65+

To be eligible , you need to have been born in Kent or lived in Kent for at least 9 months and not competed in another counties championships.

You can see results for last year's event here

Contact to confirm your availability
Team manager makes the entry (club pays for entry)

South of England Masters XC championships 10th Dec Oxford

This is an interesting event as it is run jointly with the South of England inter counties championships. A number of Vets Women will be selected for the Kent inter-counties team, however there is also a separate South of England Women’s vets championship race. There are 2 Mens races as shown below. NOTE age categories are slightly different for the women, starting at 40 yoa. Individual and team race

The course is very varied starting on playing fields, then farmland, an orchard, a woodland hill and last time a very muddy track .

11:00am Men 50 plus, 60 plus 10km
11:43am Women 40 plus, 50 plus, 60 plus, Men 70 plus 6km
14:10pm Men 40 plus 10km

Details are here

Team entries are made by team manager and entries paid by the club.

Please let know re your availability

Other Dates

18th March 2017 Cross Country Championships Liverpool

20th May 2017 BMAF Road Relay Championships Sutton Coldfield