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Runners of the Month - 2019-2020

Every 4-6 weeks or so the committee nominate one or two Runners of the Month - these are people who we feel have worked hard and improved in some way, whether that is by running their first 5K, coming back from injury or completing a longer event in an exceptional time. At the end of the year, at the club AGM, members have the opportunity to choose a male and female Runner of the Year by voting for the various Runners of the Month.

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Helen Fursman-ReidOur first runner of the month is Helen Fursman-Reid. Helen had a fantastic 2019, producing a range of impressive results. Her most notable achievement was the completion of the London Classics; She ran the London Marathon, completed the 100 mile Ride London and also swam the Serpentine (a 2 mile swim), showing her versatility but also her powers of endurance. This is obviously the result of a lot of training miles and hard work. Her dedication and perseverance saw Helen also complete two other marathons last year in Snowdonia and Cumbria. In what was a ‘short’ distance event for Helen, she achieved a first female finisher at the Forest of Dean Festival of running half marathon. Many congratulations Helen! Top running.

Jean-Philippe Villain-chastreOur second runner of the month is Jean-Philippe Villain-Chastre. JP has made huge gains since joining the Almosts and he’s been a regular supporter of the different training sessions put on each week. When it comes to racing JP is usually found on the trails somewhere and this dedication to getting muddy saw him win the clubs senior prize in last year’s off road series. The strength he built up off road has transitioned into his road running with JP achieving a couple of fairly major milestones last year. He managed to run a sub-20 minute 5km at the Gloucester 5km and was then able to demonstrate his speed endurance by achieving a sub-90 minute half marathon at Cheltenham. Many congratulations JP and best of luck this year!

Hannah BrownOur first Runner of the month is Hannah Brown (and I’ve definitely got the right one this time!). Hannah trains incredibly hard which has been borne out in her results this year. 2019 started with a fantastic sub 5 hour marathon at Manchester, form that she has maintained right throughout the year. Recently she has managed to lower her half marathon best at Cheltenham and then lowered it again by running 7 minutes faster at Stroud a few weeks later. Hannah has also been branching out beyond running completing a variety of duathlons and triathlons showing her versatility and achieving a podium finish in the process. Top running (and swimming and cycling!) Hannah!!

Andrew WilkinsonOur second runner of the month is Andrew Wilkinson. Wilko has been on great form this year and has turned in some impressive performances at the back end of the season. Most people are happy just to complete the Snowdonia Marathon but Wilko turned up and produced a PB which shows the great form and fitness that he is in. Proving his love of hills isn’t confined to Wales, he also PB’ed over 10km at Bugatti this year, lowering his time below 47 mins for the first time. Most recently he travelled down to complete Roly’s run, finishing the 40 miler and further showing why he should be our runner of the month. Great work Wilko!

Ceri SchofieldOur first runner of the month is Ceri Schofield who is having quite the season. This is demonstrated by the fact she is third in the open category of the Road race series and has been helping the club pick up team prizes. Ceri did a fantastic job at the London marathon earlier in the year, posting a time under 4 hours. She has been setting PB’s throughout the year, most recently at the Meteor mile and at the Oldbury 10 miler the following day. Ceri has recently started trail running which she has taken to very quickly. She was 5th in the recent Afan Forest Half Marathon. Ceri also coaches some of our club members, helping them achieve their best. Congratulations Ceri!

Kev FairsOur second runner of the month is Kev Fairs. It turns out that 13 is actually a lucky number for Kev. At last weekend’s Cheltenham half marathon Kev dropped under 2 hours for the first time which represented a 13 minute PB. This result shouldn’t come as a surprise though as Kev has showed considerable gains over the past 12 months. He also took 13 minutes off his Bugatti time from last year to lower his 10km PB below 55 minutes. All of this has been achieved despite ignoring advice from our illustrious chairperson, as Kev suffered a fall seconds after Claire warned of a potential hazard! Great running Kev!