Tempo Spring Duathlon.
Report – Graham Hill.
This was the second year that the event was held based around the Warwickshire College in Moreton Morrell.
This was my first attempt at a duathlon and on the basis it was on my doorstep, then why not give it a go!
The event consisted of a 6 mile run, followed by a 36 kilometer bike ride and then finished with a 4 mile run. What could be simpler.
Well, the weather didn’t help with heavy rain and wind all morning making the course difficult and testing all the way round.
Despite the weather conditions, I completed the event in a total time of 2:44:47.
From the timing splits, then I need to do more on my cycling as that was the weakest part.
I have to put out my thanks to all of the organisers and marshalls as the weather conditions were not the best to compete in let along marshall. It was great to have the support before, around the whole course and at the finish and even better that I had so many SAC supporters !
Other of our club members competing were Ben Phyall (10th – 2:20.09) and Amy Hinton (12th – 2:26.01)
I enjoyed the event, the cake at the end and the great support from a great club.
I’m in the back row, far right. Nowadays people often tell me I look young for my age. As this photo shows, this has pretty much always been the case, only it hasn’t always been something I’ve been comfortable with ! In my defence, I was in the year below my fellow team members in this photo.
Born to Run
A Trip Down Memory Lane
It’s 1965 and as a 15 year old I was in my pomp as a reasonably decent school cross country runner. Okay I was no Alex Adams but I often competed with and against runners older than myself. I was also a pretty useful miler.
To misquote The Beatles, who in ’65 recorded In My Life – “there are races I’ll remember al my life.”
This is some of what I remember.
Going to a school that didn’t have a football team and with me not exactly being built for rugby, cross country running was my chosen sport in the winter months and as I was no cricketer, it was athletics in the summer
Living in Hall Green – Birmingham, I wasn’t aware of a club like ours, where a Paul Bearman or a Paul Hawkins might have taken me under their wing and nurtured any modicum of talent I might have possessed. Were there even clubs that 14 or 15 year olds could join ? I really don’t know.
After leaving school, I briefly joined Sparkhill Harriers. This would have been late 1966 or early ’67 – 1967, The Summer of Love – not for me I hasten to add.
Early on at Sparkhill Harriers I was selected to run an 800m. I’m not an 800m runner I protested. Of course as a 16 year old I knew it all. With the sounds of toys being thrown out of the pram I left them. I was wrong. I was totally wrong. Sometimes coaches really do know what they are talking about.
I find it somewhat ironic that having been a decent miler and being selected as an 800m runner 55 years ago, 1500m and 800m running is what I do now.
They say what goes around comes around.
Fast forward 40 years, during which time I did not run. I played squash, badminton, went to the gym but absolutely no running.
It’s 2007 and fellow club member and mate Matt Sims, who I had met at Healthworks Fitness Studio in Western Road, suggested I join him and a few other members for a Saturday morning run.
The rest, as they say, is history.
I remember clearly him taking me out for my first two hour run. He hadn’t warned me of his plans. It took me a long time to forgive him.
In April 2008 I ran my first marathon, with another friend I had met at the gym. It was round Lake Annecy in France. A glorious course in glorious weather but it nearly killed me. I was totally ga ga and close to hallucinating at the end but I was chuffed with my time of 3:56.
I then didn’t do a great deal of running until another club member and very dear friend Kate Sergent suggested I join SAC. This I did on 20th January 2010. To say it transformed my life would be something of an understatement.
The race I’ll remember all my life ? That’s easy. My 3:37 Manchester Marathon aged 65. A time that was cruelly taken from me because the course was a couple of hundred metres short. Mind you, my 1500m at Lee Valley Stadium a couple of weeks ago might run it close.
My most memorable live event. That’s pretty easy as well. It was watching Andrew Pozzi become World Indoor Champion in Birmingham a couple of years ago, along with my wife together with Archie and Daisy Musk.
Needless to say there was quite a vocal contingent of SAC members in attendance. The whole arena seemed to be chanting ” Pozzi, Pozzi, Pozzi “. It was a photo finish and waiting for the result, which went on far longer than the race itself, was pure agony.
To try and list my memories and experiences since becoming a member of this wonderful club of ours would take forever. Suffice to say, joining was one of the best decisions I have ever made in my life.