Young & Old – Back at the track.

Back at the Track. Monday evening as some of our seniors’ resumed training on our home track after a long gap.
Vet’s sprinters John Boxall and Mark Illingworth on Monday evening.
Meanwhile our junior endurance group continued with their Sunday morning training sessions on the Welcombe Hills. Rachel and Ewan Sparrow seemed to be enjoying the session
This week training finally resumed at our own track for all age groups. Much Joy.

There’s a lovely report on the recent under 11’s Lockdown Pentathlon, together with reports on Charly Marshall competing in the Pan European Youth Challenge in both duathlon and aquathlon disciplines and Matt Sims and his latest ultra endeavours.

There’s a reminder from Paul Bearman about club kit.

This week’s Trip Down Memory Lane is from the December 2006 newsletter and interesting reading it makes too, with lots of familiar names who are still members.

This Friday is the final day of the month’s WRRL virtual mile race. At the time of writing Ben Kruze is currently leading the men’s race and 14 year old Alex Adams is in 8th place. Our men’s A team is in 2nd place and our men’s Masters team occupies the top spot. Our ladies A and B teams are in 3rd and 4th place respectively, while our ladies Masters team are in 2nd and 4th place.

Finally, a few of us will be competing in actual events at the Pingles Stadium in Nuneaton on Sunday. I’m looking forward to running an 800m in lanes all the way round. Here’s hoping for a lane 1 draw. Also at the Pingles on Saturday, a few of our Vet’s team will be taking part in a Virtual World Masters event, which I had hoped to take part in but I missed the cut-off date for entries. Doh.

Best Wishes

David Jones

Under 11’s Lockdown Pentathlon.

Report – Carolyne Johnston and Michelle Bartlett.

All of our Under 11’s were invited to take in the challenge of our lockdown virtual pentathlon which was quite timely just 3 weeks before resuming training at the track last week.

10 children enthusiastically took up the opportunity and tackled a pentathlon with a difference every week for 3 weeks.

Remember all those toilet rolls that everyone was stockpiling? Well we used a lot!

The challenges ranged from shuttle runs, target throw improvising with toys, socks and washing baskets, high jump using toilet roll towers, bear crawls and toilet roll burpees.

It is quite amazing how each of them came up with their own ideas.

Their scores were sent to us each week to complete the 3 week challenge.

Congratulations to Clea Roach who achieved the highest score of 800 points!

A lot of fun and laughter was had by all looking at the amusing photos.

The parents of the 10 that took part were pleased for their childrens opportunity to get involved with the pentathlon challenge and were also pleased that their children were invited to be the pilot group of athletes who returned to training last week.

Well done to everyone that took part!

Charly Marshall.

The Pan European Youth Challenge.

Report – Kate Marshall.

As with all other sports, lockdown put a stop to all competition just as the triathlon season was taking off.

Training continued despite the closure of pools and open water venues.

Over the last few weeks the opportunity to compete virtually has become “the thing” and triathlon has not been left behind.

The Pan European Youth Challenge is a series of events with increasing distances to help prepare race fitness for triathletes age 15-20 years.

Charly Marshall has completed two of the challenges. The first a duathlon (8K bike and 2k run) and then an aquathlon (400m swim and 3k run).

In both events she came second in her age category. In the aquathlon she was the second female overall and the first British triathlete.

The hardest part of these challenges has been determining the best route at the best time with the best weather conditions. As such Charly has drawn support from the early morning dog-walkers at the recreation ground.

Matt Sims.
Race to the Stones and EnduranceLife National Trail Relay.
Report – Matt Sims
Like everyone in 2020 I have had to get used to the cancellation of races and finding motivation to keep on pushing the body and stay fit.

There’s definitely something different about ‘race conditions’, particularly when it comes to running the longer distances but thankfully I have some likeminded friends (thanks Adam Evans!) that have helped quash any lulls in energy I’ve had through lockdown.

Up until a couple of weeks ago I had only managed to take part in 2 official races in 2020, one of which, The Pilgrim Challenge, I got a knee injury in and had to take a couple of weeks off (well reduced running).

Despite the lack of races and the injury I will hit 2,000 km for the year next week and that keeps me on track for my 2020 target of 3,218 km and as races start to open up again I’m looking forward to being part of them again.

I was entered into Race to the King this year with Adam Evans and inevitably it was called off but like many events companies the opportunity to be part of other races in a virtual capacity was offered.

I decided to run Race to the Stones marathon distance.

This was the first time I had taken part in a virtual race and despite being used to the distance (and more) I was pretty nervous.

I decided that I would trust in Strava and I used the ‘explore’ function and asked it to plot a route from my home in Hope Cove, Devon.

As expected it came back with a route that would take in over 1,400 metres of climbing. Those that know this part of the world know that you simply cannot do a flat run but then I was trying to replicate normal race conditions so 1,400 metres would be fairly normal.

I decided I would take a day off before I ran and woke early in the morning to set out. It was one of those days when the mist rolls in off the sea and visibility was almost zero. Oh well…. The route took me inland and introduced me to a number of new trails that despite being on my doorstep I hadn’t used before.

I got to visit some new villages, got lost in some corn fields and almost missed the tidal road crossing. None of those things will be new to anyone that has run with me before!

The day brightened up towards the end of the run and I finished the run with a 5km run along the coastal path with me finishing in a time of 5hrs and 3 mins. I’m waiting for my first ‘virtual race finishers medal to arrive’.

Last weekend I took part in the EnduranceLife National Trail relay event and ran a leg of the South West Coastal Path route. The plan for the event was to run fourteen of the England and Wales national trails as a relay and having only been conceived as an idea 3-weeks before it started it was a huge logistical challenge.

In order to get around the entire coastal path, over 600 miles, the route was split up in to manageable legs also taking into consideration the team would run some legs through the night.

I successfully got entered into running leg 20 of the SWCP route which included 11.5 miles of coastal path terrain, much of which was technical rocks and 700 metres of ascent. This leg took me from Beesands to Salcombe and took in some of the most amazing scenery the country has to offer.

My initial timing was to run at 04.40 am and I got myself prepared for that, however due to some delays in legs before me I didn’t get started until 10.40 am.

As the run progressed it was clear that EnduranceLife had created a ‘whatsapp monster’ as people started to drop their daily activities and message each other about progress and developments. It was clear that it wasn’t just me that had missed the camaraderie of being part of an ‘official event’ again.

Each virtual handover at the start of the next leg consisted of a socially distanced selfie of the 2 runners, which I am now informed will become part of a photobook that one of the runners is creating. Better than a medal, perhaps!

I remain optimistic that Tim Hutchinson and I will still get the chance to ‘Escape from Meriden’ in November but I am not sure that even the proposal of staggered starts and video briefings will see many opportunities for events to resume in the way we all want them too….in the meantime I will try to keep motivation up by taking part in virtual challenges…the times they are a changing..

Proud to wear the shirt. Andrew Pozzi in his club kit.

Club Kit

With the return to training at the track and the variable weather we are experiencing, we are encouraging everyone to have a look at the club kit on and to be prepared for all eventualities.

Over the years many people have said there’s something special about wearing our kit and their pride at being a part of the club.

The kit is great quality, prices are very competitive, supplied by a local company and can be customised with an athlete’s name.

Paul Bearman


A Trip Down Memory Lane.
This week’s Trip Down Memory Lane consists of articles taken from the club’s newsletter dated December 2006. Some very familiar names are featured.
A Club Song….hmmm not sure about that.
Wayne Vickers’ Ironman – 2006.
He must have been barely a teenager then.
Some familiar names in 2006’s annual awards and Shakespeare Race leagues

Age Shall Not Weary Them
Junior Section.

The club’s Juniors’ were voted West Midland Region Junior Club of the Year and were edged in to 2nd place for the National title at the awards ceremony held at the NEC in Birmingham, plus there were plenty of call ups to represent Warwickshire in various county matches