This is my first newsletter so apologies for the length but I thought I would try and cover some key aspects of 2018 and look ahead to 2019. Future editions I promise will be much shorter!
The Juniors presentation evening for 2018 was on 13th January and highlighted some great succeses with 74 awards picked up. The main shields going to Josh Cooling (Son of Jenny Cooling) male athlete of the year, Hannah Brown (Daughter of Gayle) female athlete of the year, Pippa Moorcroft for most improved athlete and Holly Pryor for spirit of athleticism (for those who make the club what it is with their energy).
The Juniors don’t just do running, they also take part in all athletics olympic events (apart from pole vault) competing in open competitions at loughborough and other stadiums. These events attract runners of all ages so those in “Big Club” and All Sorts are welcome to have a go but please be aware that E.A. affiliation is required to take part.
We also saw the introduction of the Toucan run this year bringing together the three parts of the club. I was astounded when I joined them before Christmas at the talent we have in the juniors and the exciting prospects we have for the future. It’s also a great training run and/or fun social. Shawn Wilebore’s efforts have been outstanding and I hope more runners come along to support the juniors in 2019. Shawn promised that if he had 50 runners (which he achieved) he would be dressing as a fairy for the next event so this is reason alone to be there!
A great number of new beginners joined Leanne Byard’s All sorts in 2018. A large number of which progressed to intermediates and then graduating to “Big club” such as Richard Hayne, Laura Camsell, Ian Knight, Paul Ashwood Jolley, Alexis Wiggins, Marc Stringer and Kate Jackson. Some have already entered cross country events and had great performances and both Richard and Paul will be running their first marathons this year.
The latest recruits of beginners graduate on 6th February at the Leicester 5K with all new beginners and intermediate groups starting Wednesday 13th February.
2018 saw our very own Simon Birch winning a number of races including the Leicester Half Marathon and John Fraser 10 with blisteringly fast times.
We also saw consistently strong performances at races and cross country’s from Richard Whitelegg who frequently finished near the head of the field. We had fantastic Marathon runs from Gayle Brown, Vince Iliffe, Joe Langham, Penny Masser, Chris Rawson, Jenny Green, Charlotte May Sinclair, Leanne Byard, Will Pither, Céline Guéry and Matthew Knight to name but a few. Some outstanding PB’s were achieved with a great HRC turnout again at the London Marathon and we trotted the globe with the blue and white vests turning up in places like Berlin, Budapest and Pisa.
We introduced pacing groups for the last Thursday of every month which from personal experience has meant I have been able to get to know lots more of you. I’m still in awe of the achievements of Ally Wren from my run with her last Thursday. For new and returning members this I think will help establish a supportive environment to try different paces and for All sorts wanting to progress to “Big Club”.
A big thank you to the outgoing Captains Nick Moore and Richard Guest. Both have done great jobs and their continued capacities are invaluable to the club going forward. Greg and I have tough acts to follow and will try our best. Luckily we have the support of returning Captains Céline and Jenny!
I wanted to thank our outgoing Membership Secretary Kirsty Pollard for all her great work. She also continues to be a great support for Leanne and the All Sorts. Who else hums the Rocky Theme tune at you up Hollycroft Hill! Richard Pearson has also been doing a great job with the role since taking over.
HRC in the community
Last weekend we had our first Bedworth parkrun takeover organised by Céline and it was a huge success. The feedback on the community page was extremely positive with great volunteers, supporters and pacers helping runners along with some achieving new PB’s. It showed what a positive impact the club can have in the local area.
In the same vein due to the efforts of Emma Thompson the LE10 run has gone from strength to strength with a variety of local runners turning out. This run on the first Friday of every month is now a permanent fixture in my calendar and for a number of others whether they are in the club or not.
As we head towards presentation evening we get to celebrate everyone’s fantastic achievements of which there are many. From both new and longstanding runners we have an inspiring group of people and this barely touches on all the mentions I would like to make. I know I have enjoyed running with you all from my first nights barely clinging onto Michelle Fowler and Penny Masser who stuck with me (I may still be in Barwell otherwise!) to flying up and down Castle Street with so many of you from the club and the brilliant All Sorts. The socials have also been nothing short of epic! I look forward to seeing many of you at presentation night. Let’s keep the positivity going through 2019.