Archive for March, 2014

Record-breaker Lucy leads B&W clean sweep

Sunday, March 30th, 2014

FRANK Tickner and Lucy MacAlister broke both the course records in the fourth Yeovil half marathon today.
Tickner eclipsed his brother Ben’s best of 68:02, which he set last year, with victory in 67:32 to add a £50 bonus to his £400 first prize.
“It was a good run by Frank and great to see a runner of his class at the event,” added Foy.
MacAlister emphatically won the women’s race and smashed the record set by Team Bath’s former international marathon runner Holly Rush last year by over three minutes as she clocked an impressive 77:55 for fifth place overall.
MacAlister also led a Bristol & West AC clean sweep with Annabel Granger and kate Godhead second and third repecctively.
The 818 finishers was just seven up on last year’s record and below the 1,000 that Foy had hoped would cross the line from around 1,200 entries.

Men: 1 Frank Tickner (Wells) 67:32 (record); 2 Jon Pepper (Brighton) 68:13; 3 Rob McTaggart (B’mth) 73:38; 4 Michael Towler (AVR) 75:01; 5 Lucy MacAlister (B&W, W35 1st woman) 77:55 (record); 6 Chris Burton (YTRR, M45) 79:53.
Teams: 1 Yeovil Town Road Runners (Burton, Nick Brooke, Darrell Sheen).
Women: 1 MacAlister; 2 Annabel Granger (B&W, W40) 80:32; 3 Kate Goodhead (&W) 83:50. Teams: 1 Bristol & West AC. 818 finishers.

Lucy leads Bristol & West bid in Yeovil half

Friday, March 28th, 2014

IN-form Bristol & West AC runner Lucy MacAlister will have one eye firmly on breaking the course record in the 4th Yeovil half marathon on Sunday.
With the organisers predicting a record-breaking turn-out for the Somerset event the Wellington-born international runner, who now lives in the village of Appley on the Devon border, would be a fitting winner.
“The ladies race is shaping up to be the one to watch this year with Lucy and her Bristol & West clubmates Kate Goodhead and Annabel Granger also entered,” said race director Jody Foy.
Reigning champion Holly Rush of Team Bath, who set a new record of 80mins 57secs last year, has been invited back but is currently injured so will have to sit out the race.
“We are on course for around 1,200 entries and hopefully we will have 1,000 on the start line,” added Foy.
That would represent considerable progress on the 632 finishers who completed the inaugural event in 2011 as Yeovil seeks to become one of the biggest road races in the county. For entry details see the race website at: www.totalbuzzevents.co.uk

US colleges spread their net to lure west runners

Friday, March 28th, 2014

Am I imaging it or are American universities hovering up our best young runners in the west country?
Barely a week goes by without another local runner revealing that they have been offered a scholarship in the US and, to be honest, who can blame them for accepting?
The offer will save thousands of pounds in tuition fees in the UK, allow the athlete to concentrate on fulfilling their potential and is also a great adventure.
But this recruitment drive seems to be heading in a worrying direction.
It used to be that a young athlete needed to be a junior international or national champion to warrant the offer of a lucrative deal. After all, the US college is buying star potential that will help them win titles at home and keep the chief coach in a job.
But I heard this week that Bristol & West’s Anna Burton is being chased by two US Universities and is being flown over to New Mexico and Iona (New York) Universities.
Now no disrespect to the 20-year-old, who recently won the Easy Runner athlete of the month competition and is a clearly a runner of great talent who will continue to improve having come late to the sport.
But so far her best performances include 32nd in the ‘National’, 18th in the Midland Cross Country Championships and 30th in the British Students. Promising but not earth-shattering.
Maybe US colleges are now targeting potential as well as proven ability – in which case will there be any young runners left in years to come?

Taunton marathon entries on the increase

Friday, March 28th, 2014

ENTRIES are up for the 2014 Taunton marathon – but have slipped back for the half marathon.
The event is now just over a week away – Sunday April 6th - and with entries now closed race director John Lewis is able to confirm final numbers.
“We have 285 entries for the marathon which is our biggest figure since 1985,” said Lewis. “When we launched the event in 1983 we had 500 people who thought they fancied the marathon and that dropped to 390 the following year.”
But entries in the half marathon have dropped 150 on 2013 to 970.
“It is the first time in years that we have dropped below 1,000,” added Lewis.
“It is a bit of an odd one. It may be due to the bad weather we have been having in Somerset and people have other more important things on their mind and also the fact that the Bridgwater 10k is taking place on the same day.”

New Yeovil 5k summer series is looming

Friday, March 28th, 2014

THE Yeovil 5k summer series, which is sponsored by Royal Canin, kicks off on Wednesday April 9th with a race every month until September. The course is flat and fast and the race HQ is the Nuffield Bar, RNAS Yeovilton and entries will be taken on the night.
The races held on the second Wednesday of each month, starting at 7.15 p.m. on each occasion. The further dates are 14th May, 11th June, 9th July, 13th August and10th September.

Christofi cruises to 5k victory

Wednesday, March 26th, 2014

WILL Christofi ran out a convincing winner of the Pomphrey Sports 5k last night.
The junior led a Bristol & West Ac clean sweep with Jarlath McKenna just pipping evergreen M50 Phil Parry at the finish.
Clubmates Jack Millar and Miles Chandler posted 5K PBs by 40 and 22 seconds respectively while first veteran over 40 was Andy Malloy. Pete Mountain, Gary Jennings and Jon Goodland were the first three veterans over 55.
Ellen Harrison, also of B&W, was first woman in 19mins 03secs, which was almost 50 seconds faster than last month. Westbury Harriers’ Kate Elliott was runner-up (19:14) with B&W’s Sarah Everitt third (19:49).
There were 88 finishers.

1 00:16:08 William Christofi Bristol and West SM
2 00:16:36 Jarlath McKenna Bristol and West SM
3 00:16:38 Phillip Parry Bristol and West M50
4 00:16:41 James Thompson Tonbridge AC SM
5 00:16:49 Jack Millar Bristol and West SM
6 00:16:52 Miles Chandler Bristol and West SM
7 00:17:13 Nick Smart Westbury Harriers M45
8 00:17:24 Chris Palmer Westbury Harriers SM
9 00:17:30 Luke Mills Bristol University Cross Country Club SM
10 00:17:34 Robert Farley Bitton Road Runners SM

Thie chasing medals in World Masters

Wednesday, March 26th, 2014

JAMES Thie is in Budapest for the World Masters Indoor Championships. The Clevedon-born former Westbury Harrier, who now lives and works in Cardiff, opens his busy programme today having entered the 800m, 1500m and 3000m.

Hot-shot Adam shows his all-round skills

Wednesday, March 26th, 2014

ADAM Wilson has been showing recently that he is not just a very fine athlete. The 16-year-old middle distance runner from Bristol has been using his quick feet on the football pitch during the winter and last weekend represented England in an Under 23 Learning Disability International friendly against Northern Ireland in Belfast.
Wilson, who plays for Thornbury Town Under 18s and is also a member of Yate & District AC, had to get through regional and national trials to get his chance in the team. The game itself was well contested but the more experienced Northern Ireland sided secured a narrow 3-2 victory.
Wilson is planning to return to the track in the summer and build upon the fine season he enjoyed last year when he finished runner-up in the Sainsbury’s UK School Games.

Exeter Arena may yet host BMC meetings in 2014

Wednesday, March 26th, 2014

JOHN Knowles tells me that the Exeter Arena may yet host some of the regional British Milers’ Club meetings this summer.
Because the Arena is being re-surfaced Knowles has pencilled in Braunton (near Barnstaple) and Tavistock to host the popular mid-week meetings but work is apparently proceeding so well that the meetings at the end of the summer may yet be staged in Exeter.

Down calls time as Avon senior men’s team manager

Wednesday, March 26th, 2014

MIKE Down has stepped down as cross country manager for the Avon senior men’s team after over 25 years in the post.
“I think I have done my time,” said Down.
Down announced his decision at the annual meeting of the Avon Athletics Association on Monday. No-one stepped forward to replace him


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