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BA Athletics Club News Digest 20th December 2021

Events Calendar - online here


Events marked "#" are points scoring for the club's participation trophy.

Club Event Map: [Clickable link to Google Maps]

For future weeks: inclusions, with photos, please to Roderick Hoffman at

Christmas Editorial

Have a great Christmas one and all, and let us look forward to a better Next Year.

We hope to see many of you on Wednesday evening at our Christmas Do. This won't be as riotous as a Conservative Party business meeting but will have merriment, free food, presents and a pay bar. You may choose to wear a face covering but please note that most won't. We fully understand if you decide not to join us (and request that you don't, if you have cold or flu symptoms, unless you also have a negative test). We are providing food - the usual pizza and curry options and also a variety of mince pies (including gluten free). You will also be able to purchase the 40th club anniversary sweatshirts and technical tees.

Knowing how many to cater for this year is particularly difficult so please tell us to expect you or, if you are a regular and not coming, that you won't be. If you bring a wrapped present of value about £5 then you will be able to participate in the Secret Santa. If you let us know your one-mile time expectation then we can expect an exciting relay beforehand.

> Roderick Hoffman

2021 Athletic Achievement, or use the Facebook group prompt:

Who What Measurement Where When 2021 Achievement Details about this achievement Target for Next Year 2022
e.g. Marathon  

The next issue will report achievements at Wednesday's Xmas mile relay and your contribution to parkrun on Christmas Day itself. So instead of asking for your exercise achievement of the week, please send in two things:

  • Firstly, look back at 2021 and tell me what has been your best exercise achievement of the whole year. It may be one of the weekly achievements or it could be a total achievement such as meeting a mileage target for the year,
  • Secondly, as you pull the wishbone on Saturday, tell us your target for 2022. Again, it might be a single race or opportunity, or it could be something broader.

Both achievements and targets might not be exercises in themselves - for instance it could be something that you have done or will do to influence the fitness of others.

Note that the next issue of this digest is likely to be late, published on Tuesday or even Wednesday, so that gives you more thinking time (use it wisely).

Wednesday's Xmas Mile Relay

On Wednesday we will use the same course as previous Xmas relays at Bedfont.

Start and finish in Hatton Road (East Side) just north of the club towards Hatton Cross, opposite the junction with Myrtle Avenue (with the post box). The course heads south past the club entrance to the junction with footpath/cycle path (oppositre Cains Lane), turn left and follow the well-lit cycle path as far as the last tree (marked with red/while tape) before the bridge over the Longford River, 180 degrees turn and return to Hatton Road up left hand (foot) path, right at the top and follow pavement back to start/finish.

We should aim to start at 6.15 p.m.  Runners, please send me your expected time for one mile and allow me to pick teams and running order.  I will attempt to stage a close finish at the end but not at every changeover.  I expect a considerable variety of abilities and don't really expect more than 16 runners.  Two years ago, I think we had nine.

Runners, please wear a light coloured top, and head torches would be a good idea.  Keep left and don't run in the road.

Steve Newell

December Monthly Mile Result

December club mile results

I narrowly edged Denis this month, everyone else was well spaced around the track and/or street circuits with Ben fastest amongst us.

December 5 Mile Handicap Result

Run 3 (15/12/21) target actual faster slower penalties ranking pts 1st lap 2nd lap
Roderick Hoffman 47:30 47:33 0:03 0:06 1 25 23:59 23:34 (-25s)
Neil Frediani 48:00 47:42 0:18 0:18 2 21 22:38 25:04 (+146s)
Steve Hillier 55:30 55:04 0:26 0:26 3 18 26:14 28:50 (+156s)
Amanda Coombs 45:30 45:43 0:13 0:26 4 16 22:49 22:54 (+5s)
Scott Davison 43:00 44:04 1:04 2:08 5 15 21:28 22:36 (+68s)
Denis Foxley 48:00 45:36 2:24 2:24 6 14 22:42 22:54 (+12s)
Benita Scaife 55:30 52:33 2:57 2:57 7 13 26:24 26:09 (-15s)
John  Scaife 55:30 52:32 2:58 2:58 8 12 26:14 26:18 (+4s)
Jakob Stenham (J) 43:00 44:37 1:37 3:14 9= 10.5 21:28 23:09 (+101s)
Maarten Stenham 43:00 44:37 1:37 3:14 9= 10.5 21:28 23:09 (+101s)

Christmas House in BedfontThere was a good turnout for the 3rd Handicap run of the season. Roderick Hoffman finished closest to the bull and might have been three seconds faster had he not slowed his run to photograph the Christmas House (see Harjit's photographs on Facebook for more pictures: Facebook ). A rarely seen Neil Frediani was second nearest followed by Steve Hillier and Amanda Coombs with the same result (penalty of 0:26) due to improving one's time (Steve) being considered half as bad as slowing (Amanda). I would have expected them to be given 17 points each but I'm not the judge. I am leading the overall table, by an impressive margin but there are still three events to come, and participants can drop their worst score, so it is still all to run for.

The next Handicap will be on the 26th January and will be followed by Steve and Linda Hillier's traditional winter quiz.

Roderick Hoffman obo Steve Newell

Three dates

The wise men of the committee met the other week and have proposed the following three dates for club events next year:

  • Sunday 20th March Club Cross Country Championships - using the regular cross-country course of Cranford Park and for which we'll be inviting other clubs to participate to honour the memory of Tom Rowley,
  • Wednesday 11th May Speedbird Ladies Race - for which we are asking permission to return to our regular course on Harmondsworth Moor
  • Sunday 5th June Concorde One Hour Race - for which we'll be hiring the Hillingdon Cycle Track and using chip timing for our first time.

Although all of these events are only provisional we would appreciate it if you wrote the dates in your diaries and also started telling friends and colleagues of them.

Roderick Hoffman obo the Club Committee

Club Featured parkrun - Nonsuch #

Club Featured parkrun at NonsuchThe Scaifes, the Cunninghams and I met at Nonsuch where they operated using their winter course which has slightly firmer footings on the way round.

We were all well beaten by a fully dressed Father Christmas who finished in under 17 minutes. He has quite a bit of ground to cover on Christmas Day so it's good that he was getting his training in.

Roderick Hoffman

Round-the-Airport Run Thursday 30th December from 11:00 #

Reminder - please let me know that you are considering attending this run. Once we know the "possibles" we can fine tune our meeting place and meeting time - and even plan some stops on the way round.

I checked out the more difficult western edge of the course and have one change from last year - one of the paths is hopelessly overgrown but there is an alternative. The rest were OK and there were no floods this year.

The aim is to jog the total 12miles / 19km distance, from Hatton Cross clockwise to Harmondsworth and then continuing via Harlington back to Hatton Cross. There are short cut options from Stanwell Moor, Harmondsworth and Harlington.

We'll probably use the opportunity of being in Hatton Road to use the club showers and the Duke of Wellington bar.

 Updated course details: Round_LHR_2021.pdf

Roderick Hoffman

Activity Achievements over the week 13th to 20th December 2021

23 club members and friends reported their week activity achievements.

Colleague Activity Distance Course When Duration Comments
Andy Rayner Cycling 1.75miles Sat 00:11:10 Also on Sunday in 12:00.  Thanks and Merry Christmas everyone.
Barry Walters Running 8km Lightwater Sun am 00:57:03 Ran over to Lightwater Country Park and did one circuit before returning home. Conditions were damp and misty.
Ben Cooper Running 15km Caerdydd Wed am 01:24:09 I've been a bit lacking in the long runs lately so I pushed myself on Wednesday, probably my furthest single distance in 5 years. My hips were not happy at the end!!
Benita Scaife Volunteering Berkshire Cross-Country Championships Sun 04:15:00 Our quasi-activity was officiating at the Berkshire cross country championships in Cookham today. We were recording numbers and were out for just over 4 hours…
John Scaife Volunteering Berkshire Cross-Country Championships Mon 05:15:00 ... Fortunately it was a perfect December day once the early fog lifted, and the coffee van was a stone’s throw from the finish.
Bob Bannister parkrun 5km Osterley Sat am 00:22:01 All time, all place parkrun PB on 405th parkrun
Clara Halket Various Home Daily Clara has been opening a window every day and, one assumes, carrying out the instructions.
Denis Foxley Running 4.5miles Ruislip Woods and Common Sun am 00:57:00
Eddie Giles Treadmill 1mile Salisbury Gym Fri lunch 00:07:40 For Dec. mile - first run for three weeks; heavy cold for two weeks after flu & booster jabs!!
Emma Moreton parkrun 5km Bedfont Lakes Sat am 00:24:21 Bedfont Lakes parkrun, 1 second faster than last week . Ed: It must be the hat - more streamlined.
Jacqui Musselwhite parkrun 5km Woking Sat am 00:26:44 A festive run with my daughter at Woking parkrun. Such fun!
Joan Foxley Running 4miles Ruislip Woods and Common Sun am 00:53:00
Julie Barclay Exercises Ash Daily 00:30:00 Squats and leg raises…strengthening
Melanie Miller Walking 8km Tonbridge Sat pm 01:51:54 We did do a fun 8km walkabout Tonbridge taking in fields rivers and oasthouses that IS the trademark of Kent! Bit muddy in places but fun nonetheless
Michael Ball Hill Work St. Marthers near Newlands Corner 10 x 25sec hill sprints with Harry and Ian from Woking AC
Mike Dennison Running 25.8km To and round Richmond Park Tue 02:10:39 I remembered to upload something, after several weeks! My longest run since the London Marathon and first visit to Richmond Park for a few months. Surprisingly warm, even though the sun didn't come out until I was back home!
Neil Frediani Running 5.41miles High Peak, Peak District Sun am 01:14:09 A cold and hilly run/walk in the Peak District, 1000' of elevation, sunrise/moonset (pictured), with grouse, peat bogs, rolling hay bales, charging horses and icy slopes.
Paul Watt Running 10miles Frimley Sun 01:20:00 Weekly longer run
Piers Keenleyside  Race Marathon Portsmouth Coastal Marathon Sun 04:26:02 Run by me for the 7th time today. Slightly cold but on the whole good running weather - no rain and no wind to speak of. Halfway in 2:04 but then faded badly (as usual these days!). Was placed 351st with over 200 slower than me!
Roderick Hoffman Hill work 6.16km Northala Fields Fri 00:39:51 Three circuits each taking in a run up and down the spiral.
Sarah Gordon parkrun 5km Braunstone Sat am 00:32:13 Fastest time this year, 32.13 for 5k. Also first in my age category. That’ll do me for 2021!
Simon Turton Orienteering 8.62km Shotover Country Park, Oxford Sun am 01:08:58 Nice to get out for some proper orienteering today, courtesy of Thames Valley orienteers. Good, clean run with only minor errors on a crisp morning. Need to get some more hill training in though .
Steve Hillier Running 3.8km Local postman's round Sun pm 00:22:59 This year I decided to deliver our local Christmas cards by running, rather than walking, around the streets.

Week Achievements

Roderick Hoffman

parkrun results for Saturday 18th December 2021

34 runs and volunteer efforts are listed below - get in touch if your activity is missing.

Club parkrunner parkrun Pos Time Age Grade PB? Comment
John Scaife Nonsuch 367 00:33:45 50.62% first run at Nonsuch, park #80
Benita Scaife Nonsuch 366 00:33:44 61.96% first run at Nonsuch, park #71
Roderick HOFFMAN Nonsuch 255 00:29:15 55.33% Same time as last week - but different parkrun
Ian CUNNINGHAM Nonsuch 250 00:29:08 54.58%
Janet Cunningham Nonsuch 251 00:29:08 65.68% assisted by Kiki, the family dog (Ed: pulling hard when Janet overtook me)
Trish MCCABE Alice Holt 146 00:31:46 49.53% first run at Alice Holt, Park #75
David DUGGAN Bedfont Lakes 88 00:32:54 49.19% 9th run at Bedfont Lakes this year
Maarten Stenham Bedfont Lakes 26 00:24:32 57.34%
Emma Moreton Bedfont Lakes 25 00:24:19 63.26% 1s improvement on last week
Joe NOLAN Black Park 287 00:31:50 53.19%
Sarah GORDON Braunstone 179 00:32:13 62.91% 88th run at Braunstone, fastest of the year.
John Lennon Broadwater 95 00:35:26 45.25%
Maria Jovani Bushy Park 284 00:24:05 65.95%
Mike Dennison Bushy Park 51 00:19:32 84.30% best grade and 3rd fastest time at Bushy out of his 282 runs there
Piers KEENLEYSIDE Chipping Norton School 49 00:29:31 56.30%
Scott DAVISON Crane Park 35 00:25:16 58.38%
Alastair Heslop Guildford Barcode Scanning at Guildford
Julie BARCLAY Hanworth 34 00:33:01 56.34% first run at Hanworth, park #65
Paul WATT Hanworth 6 00:20:52 74.28% best age grade of the day at Hanworth, park #60
Joan FOXLEY Harrow 137 00:38:09 61.38%
Denis Foxley Harrow Timekeeper at Harrow
Alice BANKS Higginson, Marlow 56 00:27:33 74.71% run #180, 25th at Higginson and tailwalker finished in 41:10
Anne ANDERSON Osterley 211 00:46:59 61.33% (Assisted)
Alan ANDERSON Osterley 210 00:46:58 53.62% Assisting Anne
Anne Bannister Osterley 85 00:26:37 76.14%
Bob Bannister Osterley 25 00:22:01 76.15% PB   15th run at Osterley, course pb by 24 seconds after two years
Christopher T KELLY Reading 131 00:31:51 48.67% run #496, edging closer
Murray HOGGE Reading 21 00:21:50 74.12%
Steve NEWELL Richmond Park 277 00:48:06 40.89% 12th calendar year with a run at Richmond
Barry WALTERS Sandhurst Memorial 61 00:28:39 59.10% park #48 and completes tour of Berkshire parkruns
Melanie Miller Tonbridge 373 00:37:15 47.34% Half ton? 50th different parkrun.
Harjit Jhooti Tonbridge 280 00:31:30 55.98% First run in Kent, first run at Tonbridge, park #31
Kay Trinder Woking 138 00:28:54 62.63%
Jacqueline MUSSELWHITE Woking 105 00:26:44 65.15%


Firstly, a correction to last week’s report which mentioned Roderick Hoffman having done 317 different parkruns.  It should have said 313.  That places him in 23rd position in the all time worldwide ”most events” list.  Paul Freyne (unattached) still leads the way with 541 (456 in UK) and has relentlessly added 25 since the end of lockdown.  He does run at inaugurals quite frequently – 7 this year so far - this week he ran at run #1 at Bartley Park in Southampton in 29:29. You could ask does ever go back and try for a pb, the answer is “no” or “certainly not recently”.  He did get pbs at Bushy in 2007 when there wasn’t anywhere else to go and also later at Eastleigh and Frimley Lodge where he returned just once in each case and ran a bit faster.  Our own David Duggan has also managed 25 parkruns this year – his secret was to go to Northern Ireland a couple of times in July because they opened up earlier there and then take in a national day such as German Unification or US Thanksgiving when travel rules allowed.

Just to get a few hearts racing, there is Xerox Technology Park in Dundalk, Co Louth, Republic of Ireland about halfway between Dublin and Belfast.  It can only be a matter of time ……., Surely?!

Mike Dennison (19:32, 84.3%) had a great run at Bushy Park and achieved his best age grade % at Bushy where he has run 282 times.  Never give up!

Bob Bannister (22:01) ran at Osterley for the 15th time and chopped nearly half a minute of the course pb he set just before the great interruption, i.e. almost two years ago now. Bob's fastest ever parkrun on any course on his 405th parkrun!

Barry Walters (28:39) ran at Sandhurst Memorial for the first time taking him to 48 different parkruns and completing the tour of Berkshire (Bracknell, California, Dinton Pastures, Maidenhead, Newbury, Prospect Park, Reading, Sandhurst and Woodley) unless any reader knows better.  Roderick Hoffman is the only other member with a complete collection of Berkshire parkruns, several others just need one more.

Melanie Miller (37:15) went along to Tonbridge in Kent to complete a half century of different parks.  Harjit Jhooti (31:30) was also a first timer there and is up to 31 parks.

Paul Watt (20:52, 74.28%) found time to leave his building project for a few minutes and get to Hanworth for the first time.  He might have only been 6th but his age grade % was better than anyone else’s there this week.

Merry Christmas to all parkrunners and enjoy Saturday whether you run or not.

Steve Newell

Full club parkrun database - {read access to club parkrun database} - Download and explore (this is where I get most of my club stats from).

Club Event Map: [Clickable link to Google Maps]

Roderick Hoffman

Club parkrun Volunteering update

 Due to deficiencies in the official parkrun reports the analysis of volunteering has to be based on snapshots. I made snapshots on 14th September 2021 and 19th December 2021 so this report covers volunteering over the 14 weeks between these dates.

Identified club members got 312 volunteer credits. These were spread amongst 25 club members. David Duggan contributed the most with 86! Note that that includes Junior parkruns and multiple credits for the same event date. But still very impressive. Next highest was Emma Moreton with 34, Mike Dennison with 21 and Alastair Heslop with 18. Maria Jovani and Melanie Miller also contributed ten or more.

23 different roles were undertaken (including 8 roles that David Duggan didn't undertake!). The most commonly undertaken role was "Communications Person" undertaken 40 times, "Volunteer Co-ordinator" 29 times then "Run Report Writer" 23 times. And to anyone who suggests that those roles are easy and allow you to register a run as well - I would suggest they contact their local parkrun to volunteer! Of the roles that you can't combine with a run, "Marshal" was undertaken 19 times, "Timekeeper" 18 times and "Run Director" 13 times (some of these may have been undertaken at Junior parkrun - but that still involves getting up early and contributing without running).

A change in the report structure produced an oddity - both Chris Kelly and Jain Reid are credited with one blank role (this could have been before the period under analysis). I'm sure that this is an error in the system, such as a previously carried out role not having a matching equivalent in the current report, rather than they had nothing to do at an event they volunteered at. Some previously carried out roles had no credits to them this period - in some cases because that role no longer exists (e.g. "Backup Timer"). There are two roles, "Funnel Manager" and "Finish Token Support", which only have 1 credit each over the period - and the odd thing about that is that I got both of them, at the same event, and I had hardly anything to do!

Another way of looking at our members contribution to parkrun is to compare our efforts to those needed by a typical parkrun each week (I'm using Northala Fields for this, combining the 5k and Junior events):

  • For Volunteer Coordinators, Communications Peoples and Run Reports we could fully satisfy the needs of the 5k and Junior parkun every week,
  • For Run Directors we could keep the parkruns going for half of the 14 weeks and around that time for most of the course set-up and close-down roles,
  • Timekeepers would last 6 of the 14 weeks,
  • Tail Walkers could do four and a half weeks,
  • Scanners would only last halfway through the second weekend!,
  • Marshals - we could provide all the marshals needed for the first weekend but hardly any thereafter.

Roderick Hoffman

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