The logo of the baRUNNER website. HOME NEWS DIARY

baRUNNER - a website for the British Airways Athletics Club

The logo of the baRUNNER website.

BA Athletics Club News Digest 15th June 2020

Events - see below:

Inclusions, with photos, please to Roderick Hoffman at

Solo Events Calendar

Week of Monday… Midweek Challenge Weekend Challenge Weekend Solo Run
8th June Street Spelling # CIE none Best weekend exercise achievement
15th June Track-on-Field
I Spy # Best weekend exercise achievement
22nd June Local run (tbc) none Best weekend exercise achievement
29th June Solo Mile (July) none Best weekend exercise achievement
6th July 5k/10k Virtual Club Race (tbc) none Best weekend exercise achievement

All side-by-side races are off until at least the end of June, but the club continues to operate with the Solo runs listed above - these ARE still permitted but see the Coronavirus footnote at the end of this digest. There are no updates to this - the maximum group size is still six and the club would have no insurance cover were we to organise a face-to-face event. Hopefully we can start to return to side-by-side training and events in July.

Roderick Hoffman

Midweek Challenges

This week's "Midweek Challenge" is another "Track-on-Field".  In one exercise session see how many of the five events 1,500m, 800m, 400m, 200m, and 100m you can do, at speed and with the objective of better than halving your time from one to the next (so if you run an 8 minute 1,500m, try to do under 4 minutes for the 800m, well under 2 minutes for the 400m, perhaps 50s for the 200m, and 20s or less for the 100m).  You don't have to do all of the events, you can do those you do in any order and you can do them on any day up to and including Friday BUT all the ones recorded need to be done in the same exercise session (you can't do some one day, and the rest the next). You will need a watch and you may be able to visit a quiet but open stadium (like Feltham's) or use a park with a path with 100m posts or you will need to have a GPS watch measuring in meters - some watches may have useful "auto-lap" capabilities. Treadmills are allowed, but you must be running or walking. Send me the results, for instance by filling in the table below and forwarding to

Name Date 1500m time 800m time 400m time 200m time 100m time Comment:
Submit by the end of FRIDAY please, so that I can tabulate the results over the weekend.

Next week's Midweek Challenge will be a "Local Run" event, being organised by Amanda Coombs. Details next Monday but this will be another explore the neighbourhood type events. You'll start from home (or a different predetermined location) and run for 45 minutes (or walk for 75) on a route that you have planned to take in a number of local attractions.

In the week of 29th June, so including Thursday 2nd July, we have the July Solo Mile. I'm hoping that some of us will be able to run this together at Harmondsworth. If this is permitted then I'll announce details next Monday. The week after Steve Taylor will be organising another virtual 5k or similar.

Roderick Hoffman

Midweek Challenge Street Spelling Results and Report

We had 18 competitors in the Street Spelling event which was last week's Midweek Challenge. I think that we all had a good time and found local streets we probably hadn't run to before (or run the complete lengths of, in some cases). Thank you to Simon Turton and to Jain Reid for helping with the admin on this event - particularly to Jain since on the day she was unable to do the run herself due to work commitments. All of the results are listed in the table that follows.

When it comes to the winners I had a big problem because one of the competitors owned up to having explored some ambiguity in the written rules - the wording hadn't specified that you had to start at your house (and in fact that was in part deliberate because I didn't want to exclude anyone who might have wanted to start from their place of work). It would be unfair to say which participant had tried to exploit the instructions I had written for my event...except that it was my elder sister, so I will. Her raw result would have had her in first place...but with any penalty applied I would then be in first place! I explained the infringement to Simon and Jain, without mentioning who it was and the impact on the results, and they agreed with each other than the actions broke the spirit of the rules and the time taken to run to, and from, her home to the starting point needed to be added in. Consequently, the winner on fastest time goes to myself, Roderick Hoffman with Gary Rushmer second. Steve Hillier was pipped by Gary by just 3 seconds so finished in third place. On shortest distance we have a clear named winner in Steve. But which Steve? Steve Hillier this time edges into second place by 50 meters from Stephen Taylor but it is Steve Newell who made it to the top of the table with a distance of just 2.73km - clearly all of that rowing practice has sharpened his navigational skills (though note that he did run his chosen course).

Participant Day Start Starter Chase-Word Letters Adj Time Adj km Distance Comment
Sarah Gordon Tue 08:00 RH LUGWORMS* 8 00:54:49 6.53 Time & Distance includes all bonuses and deductions
Emma Moreton Tue 08:00 RH PROBLEMS 8 00:26:31 4.96  
Alice Banks Tue 10:00 RH CHEFDOMS 8 00:30:42 5.36 "F" Text timed at 45 minutes - she was well into her cup of tea before she remembered to send it!
Steve Newell Tue 11:00 RH PROBLEMS 8 00:32:46 2.73 Distance - First
Simon Turton Tue 17:00 RH CHEFDOMS 8 00:43:17 5.91  
John Scaife Tue 18:00 RH PROBLEMS 8 00:38:43 4.93  
Janet Smith Wed 07:00 ST HANGBIRD 7 00:44:30 6.99  
Barry Walters Wed 07:30 ST WINGBACK 8 00:36:08 4.83  
Neil Frediani Wed 08:00 ST FELWORTS 8 00:58:30 8.05  
Roderick Hoffman Wed 10:00 ST WAMBLING 8 00:21:36 3.49 Time - First
Amanda Coombs Wed 15:00 JR BLANKETS 8 00:26:42 4.67  
Kelly Davis Wed 18:00 JR BLANKETS 8 00:29:21 3.93  
Gary Rushmer Wed 18:00 JR BLANKETS 8 00:25:02 3.52 Time - Second
Steve Hillier Wed 18:00 JR BLANKETS 8 00:25:05 3.32 Distance - Second / Time - Third
Melanie Miller Thurs 09:00 RH LUGWORMS* 8 01:10:00 7.75 Due to a misunderstanding ran the whole length of each street
Stephen Taylor Thurs 09:00 RH PROBLEMS 8 00:30:35 3.37 Distance - Third
Harjit Jhotti Thurs 18:00 RH PROBLEMS 8 00:26:43 3.89  
Christine Munden Thurs 19:00 RH LUGWORMS* 7 01:15:00 5.56 Would have been quicker if she hadn't gone shopping at Tesco on the way round

I'll try to organise another one of these perhaps towards the end of July. If anyone wants to organise their own event, perhaps with members of other clubs, then I've updated the instructions here.

Roderick Hoffman

I-Spy Weekend Activity # (run-of-the-month)

This weekend we have something a little different (though you are welcome to report your weekend achievements instead). Saturday marks the longest day so this activity is to do the longest run or walk you can AND to ensure that you stay interested and aware of your environment tick off items you see as you go. Some examples of the items are given below - the full list is currently on this page BUT this will be updated up until 17:00 on Friday with suggestions that you make to the list on Facebook (or email me if you don't use Facebook). Later on this week I'll add some example pictures.

Example items...

  • A Heron,
  • Two or more swans (the two must be seen in the same "photographic" view, but you do not need to take a photograph),
  • A moving Tractor (nil points if it is stationary),
  • A Postbox and Postie (both together - we all know how easy it is to find a postbox, be it Gold or George IV),
  • A house "Sold" sign (outside a house, not an estate agents),
  • A police car with lights flashing (please don't do something yourself to summon such),
  • And something considered unusual, for which you must take a photograph.

If anything isn't clear, or you have suggestions to make, then get in touch.

Roderick Hoffman

SOLO activity achievement weekend 12th to 15th June 2020

This week, the same as last week, 27 colleagues recorded weekend activity achievements. The compilation of this table does involve quite a bit of searching through Facebook so if I've missed your achievement consider whether you've provided it to me in an easily "digestible" format. Looks like we were just 2seconds off a world record - better get those adjudicators in again...

Colleague Activity Distance Course Start Time Run Time Comments
Adrian Haines Running 5k Ross Barclay 5k (Intermittent) Sun pm 00:12:53 c/w 5km road world record of Joshua Cheptegei of 0:12:51…but see below *.
Amanda Coombs Open water swim 1.72km Shepperton Sun 00:30:31
Andy Rayner Running 4miles XC Sat 00:50:08 Mud caught up with me (on Tuesday did 48:06)
Barry Walters Running 9k Caesar's Camp and back Sun am 00:49:33 Nice easy run in pleasant sunshine.
Benita Scaife Running 5.5miles Turkey Trot Sun 00:58:56 Through Copas Turkey Farm in Cookham Dean
Bob Bannister Running 10k Weybridge 10k (virtual) Sun am 00:47:34 In Bushy Park, another 10k PB for me, taking almost a minute off last week's all time best. Running into some really good form lately!
Chris Stockwell Walking 13miles Around Fifield, Holyport and beyond Sat am 04:20:00 My secateurs were needed in places, the recent rain has revitalised the brambles.
Clara Halket Running 30km Frith Hill and Blackdown Hill Sun Including 25x1km with 1 min rest between each.
Eddie Giles Running 2.5k Winterbourne Gardens Sun pm 00:12:41 First run in 7 weeks, circuit of 1 lane, 2 fields, 2 swing gates &1 ford.
Emma Moreton Running 10k Weybridge 10k (virtual) Sun 00:48:35
Harjit Jhooti Running 8.05km Endure24 Sat 00:50:35 First leg of a 24 hour relay
Jain Reid Running 21.15km Comrades (virtual) Sun am 02:09:41 In Richmond Park followed by 7.09km walked final leg of Endure24
Joe Nolan Running 5k Wraysbury/Datchet Sun am 00:33:31 Also 1 mile on Friday in 0:10:50
John Scaife Running 5.5miles Turkey Trot Sun 00:58:57 Through Copas Turkey Farm in Cookham Dean
Keith Johnson Running 5k Markyate near St Albans Sat am 00:24:50 Part of total 7.7k run in 37:13 (faster than last week).
Kelly Davis Running 3.1miles International Gin Day 5k (virtual) Sun am 00:36:45 In Hanworth Park. The race was virtual…the gin looked real!
Maria Jovani Running 3.11miles Bushy parkrun old course Sat am 00:20:51 Chasing Mike Dennison
Michael Ball Running Hill sprints Sun am PB for the hill sprints (80m in 14.9s) and core circuits.
Mike Dennison Running 5km Bushy parkrun old course Sat am 00:20:30 Being chased by Maria Jovani
Neil Frediani Cycling 42.11miles Box Hill trip Sun 03:25:51 Following a 25mile warm-up on Friday.
Petra Otto Running 5k Sat Similar on Tue and Fri.
Piers Keenleyside Walking 12miles Comrades replacement Sun 03:28:03 Ealing to Barnes and back
Roderick Hoffman Running 10.73miles 2+2pi (miles) Sun 02:17:31 Out to a point one mile from home, round the "one mile out" circle, then home again.
Simon Turton Walking 4miles Sun With Judy and also 10miles cycle with the girls
Stephen Taylor Running 13.31miles Richmond and back Sat am 02:16:29 A bit of a slow one this morning, one of those days.
Steve Hillier Running 5.1k Roxbourne Park and Eastcote. Fri evening 00:31:48 Photography-free, street signs scorned.
Steve Newell Indoor Rowing 5000m Home Sun 19:59.7 Also 1 mile walk in 0:15:58

Two Plus Two Pi run circle* Adrian points out that the "Ross Barkley 5k" is a tongue-in-cheek way of achieving a 5k PB by covering the 5k in any number of short sprints with as much recovery between them as you need, only recording the time sprinting. The Chelsea footballer first posted his 16:11 5k time on Strava without such a caveat. Once people had worked out how he had run such a time it has become a bit of a joke challenge, although it is still a challenge. Adrian's achieved it by running 25x200m with 90seconds recovery between each (compare with Clara above - who did 25x1000m with 60seconds recovery!). Adrian should be in good shape for this week's Track-on-Field challenge, albeit it is only 3k in total.Amanda Swim Triangles

Finally, a couple of geometric shapes from our GPS trails this week - Amanda's swimming Triangles and my 2+2pi Circle.

Again, including if you are taking part in the I-Spy, submit your best exercise achievement of the weekend by filling in the following form and sending it to me OR replying to the message on Facebook (or any other messaging format to me):

Your Name Event Distance Location Day/Start Time or Duration I-Spy Items Details or comment, and other achievements
e.g. Running   Also attach photographs of unusual items seen (or post on Facebook)

Roderick Hoffman {submit by 5pm on Monday}

parkrun Update

parkrun is still suspended in every country until at least the end of this month but with Rugby matches (with spectators) now underway in New Zealand (where, of course, it is now winter and wholly appropriate) the possibility of a resumption is being discussed. 

Meanwhile more people are still signing up and over 800 new barcodes were issued last week alone even though there is no prospect of being able to use one for a few more weeks yet.  Leading the way with 14 was Chevin Forest in Yorkshire which was just about to have its inaugural when the portcullis was lowered (13 weeks and counting).  After the initial panic buying (remember ?) all ingredients mentioned in cake recipes are now obtainable.  Anniversaries we have just missed include Wormwood Scrubs (9 years), Tilgate (8 years) and Crane Park (8 years).

Steve Newell

Ed: At the weekend I walked round the full course of Church Mead parkrun in Amersham - a parkrun so new they hadn't had their inaugural before the lockdown started. This is a parkrun for tough guys - with 140meters ascent, hence more than at Sunny Hill (91), Tring (100), Wendover Woods (105) and even Lullingstone (129).  You've been warned.

Coronavirus Warning Footnote [changes from last week underlined or struck-through (none)]

In the UK exercise outside is permitted because it will boost physical and mental health and because the risk of catching Coronavirus outdoors is very low if social distancing advice is kept to. The relevant law in England has been updated (1st June 2020) and now says what you can't do, rather than only allowing you do do a limited number of things. The sections that refer to the activities of the club are "Restrictions on movement" and "Restrictions on gatherings". In short you can't stay overnight anywhere other than at home and you can't meet with more than one other person indoors or more than five other persons outdoors. Taking into account the law and official guidance we advise you as follows:

  • Do not conduct a solo run if you are unwell, particularly if you have symptoms of the coronavirus such as a fever, or if you share a house with someone who has these symptoms,
  • Do not conduct a solo run if you consider yourself to be, or others consider you to be, vulnerable, such as being elderly OR with pre-existing health conditions,
  • You may drive to outdoor publicly accessible open spaces irrespective of distance, but you should follow social distancing guidance whilst you are there. We should still be avoiding public transport except for essential journeys, and do not share cars with people outside your household. You are not allowed to stay away for the night - except for elite athletes who are allowed to overnight in a hotel (if they can find one open),
  • In England you may now meet with up to five other persons for your exercise outside the home - e.g. other runners and coaches. But do not share athletics equipment and continue to maintain the social distancing with anyone you do meet up with. You are recommended to minimise the total number of different people you meet with over the days and weeks,
  • As you run, keep 2m away from all others, by default diverting around them (don't leave it up to them to avoid you),
  • Do not push yourself too far, this may weaken your defences against the virus and/or increase the probability of requiring assistance. We all have different limits so you need to judge what would be too far for you,
  • If government instructions are updated to limit or prevent exercising outside your homes please respect such instructions - we should be fighting the virus, not authority.

If you are unwell yourself, especially if you have symptoms of the virus:

  • Put your needs first...
  • but please let me (Roderick Hoffman) or Steve Hillier know of your condition/status, BUT we will keep it to ourselves UNLESS you ask us to pass information on.

Next Digest - Results, news, pictures, feedback, jokes, stories - send them to the editor, Roderick Hoffman, at

Not for you, no longer interested? remove me please.

Difficulty viewing this? Read it from the website:- Latest.shtml.Club website:



Full Index