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We are always looking for news, results and race stories for our weekly Echo report. Please tell us about your experiences, results, personal best times achieved, worst nightmare races etc by emailing almostathletes@hotmail.com - if you don't tell us about it, we can't report it!. We can't guarantee that all information supplied will go in as the Echo have full editorial control, but we will do our best.

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Several Almost Athletes travelled north, taking part in a variety of events and distances. One group of tourists took in Newcastle parkrun before lining up at the start of the largest half-marathon in the world, The Great North Run. They joined 57,000 runners on the famous course across the Tyne to the South Shields coast. Matt Hartwell was the first Almost across the line in 1:31, followed by Mike Harris in 1:39. Dave Mayo ran 2:04, Norm Lever 2:22, Rachael Nolan 2:36 and Iris Mayo 2:53.

Dave Rogers was also in the North of England, completing ‘The Lap’, a 45 mile ultra around England’s largest lake, Lake Windermere. He tackled 8500 feet of elevation, storming home in an impressive 10.5 hours, less than half the cut off time. In nearby Keswick, Martyn Fisher sampled Whinlatter Forest parkrun before going on to complete the Keswick Lakeland Trails 15k in 1:44.

Nick Simon ran the Gritstone Grind 35 mile ultra along the Gritstone Way in the Peak District, finishing in 9:47 and 3rd MV60. At the tough Battle of the Borders Marathon, Shropshire, Ingrid Harris finished 3rd overall and 1st lady in a time of 4:53.

Closer to home, there were mud and obstacles aplenty at the Severn Mud Run, Stroat. Penny Lewis, Zakia Hussain and Jason Hulance all gained PBs as they completed the event in 2:35.

Joanna Wisniewska-Barreto, Helen Barker and Mariel Chretien Woodchester Park Race, a challenging eight mile course through hilly woodland trails. In Bude, Peter Mitchener and Jeanette Gullick ran the 8 mile Bude Pirate Run, both finishing in 1:20. Catherine and Mike Daly tackled the New Forest Marathon finishing in 4:05 and 4:06 respectively.

A number of club members took part in the popular Cotswold Sprint Triathlon. Karen Hilton finished in 1:14, Mark Lyes 1:18, Wendy Haskins 1:29, Glenda Gill 1:29 and Steve Yarnold 1:32. There was also cycling for Mark Stojanov at the Evesham Cyclefest 38 miler, which he completed in 3:20.

Kathy Haig reached Portugal aboard the Zhuhai in the Clipper Round the World Yacht Race, while Allan Green was on the other side of the world completing the North Shore Marathon, New Zealand in 5:11.

At Cheltenham parkrun, Prash Sripathi was first home for the club in 19:05, with Sharon Hadad first female Almost in 23:19 (8th lady). Nick Lewis ran his 50th parkrun, and there were PBs for Duncan Mounsor 20:46, Mark Conway 25:44, Jane Russell 28:16 and Forrest Wheeler 28:37.

Ben Stone nailed a 19:25 PB to finish 5th at Gloucester City, while Hester Coggin was 2nd lady with 23:43. Ben Taylor took 1st place at Newent in 20:07, while at Mallards Pike, Martin Foster was 4th in 20:03 and Jo Foster was 4th lady in 23:52. Mike Bryce, Patricia and Kev Dendy represented the club at Stratford Park, Stroud.

There was tourism for Kate Freeman at Banbury, Norm Lever at York and David Nelson at Drumpellier Country. Adam Smith ran at Clumber, Lesley Cottle at Fort William, and Steve Axford at Tamar Lakes where he was 4th in 20:43. Lynne Macedo ran at Divonne les Baines, Geneva, finishing 9th lady and 1st in her age category in 31:05.

Almost Athletes took over Gloucestershire Airport to host the Meteor Mile Race along the floodlit runway. Matt Polson was first Almost home, taking 5th position in 4:59. Phillip Jukes followed in 5:13 then Matt Barnes in 5.21. Helena Youde was the first female Almost to cross the line in 6:02, then Hattie Jenkins in 6:09 and Ceri Schofield with a PB of 6:15. There were also PBs for Thomas Wood (5:38), Louise Inchley (6:58), Nat Stow (7:14) and Mark Stojanov (8:39).

Several Almosts were also in action at Oldbury 10 Miler, where Polson again led for the club in 1:05. Richard Birch (1:06) and Duncan Mounsor (1:12) followed. Jeanette Gullick scored a PB with 1:15, as did Schofield with 1:17. Alison Hume finished in 1:27, as did Inchley, who gained another PB.

A group of Almosts tackled the inaugural Cotswold Trail 10k and Half Marathon at Sudeley Castle, where participants were slowed down by queues at gates and stiles. Olga Goffin stormed across the challenging 13.1 mile course in 1:51 to finish 3rd Lady. Also running were Paul Wilkins (2:05), Fi Barnes (2:18), Richard Knightley (2:18), Francis Bull (2:22), Giles Forster (2:24), Jackie Slaughter (3:02) and Sarah Carr (3:04). Gareth Wilkes chose to complete the 10K and finished in 1.21.

There were marathons for Allan Green at the Excalibur Marathon 8 (4:59) and Ingrid Harris (4:07, 3rd lady). Julianne Jameson managed an impressive 12 laps of the Joust 24 hour event to clock up a total of 67 miles.

Andrew Wilkinson was in action at the hot and humid Burmarrad Edition 10k Malta (48:55). Martyn Fisher ran his fastest 10k in years at the Bedford Twilight 10k (49:20). Dave Mayo and Iris Mayo completed the RAF Cosford Spitfire 10k in 52:40 and 1:10 respectively.

Martin Thomas, Peter Blakeman and Katy Sworn tried to Beat the Bore at Elmore. Thomas ran home in 1:07 to take 9th place. Blakeman finished in 1:07 and Sworn in 1:34.

Hannah Brown took on West Lancs Triathlon, completing the event in 1:22.

At Alderton 5k, Joanna Wisniewska-Barreto finished in 25:01. Dave Nelson ran a course PB of 32:49, having already donned the centurion outfit at Cheltenham parkrun to mark his 100th event.

At Cheltenham, Prash Sripathi was the first of the club’s parkrunners to cross the line in 19:31, while Sharon Hadad led for the ladies in 23:42. Ben Stone gained a course PB of 19:33 at Gloucester City, finishing in 7th place. There was representation locally at Kingsway, Tewkesbury, Stonehouse, Worcester, and Worcester Pitchcroft. Hester Coggin was 2nd lady at Newent (25:23) and Michelle Balchin ran at the new Stratford Park, Stroud, finishing 6th lady (27:16).

Further afield, Josh Hand ran at York, Patricia and Kev Dendy at Severn Bridge, Robert Foord at Wimpole Estate and Nicole Hope at Alice Holt. Matthew Bevan was in Haverfordwest, David Garnett in Pendle, and Danny Carroll in Salisbury. Lesley Cottle ran at Fort William and completed the course in 27:40 to take 3rd lady.

A very hot bank holiday weekend saw some scorching results from Almost Athletes with a number of podium finishes achieved by club members.

At the Winchcombe 10km the Almost Athletes ladies team put in an incredibly strong performance with 5 athletes finishing in the top 10. Patricia Dendy finished third in 51:39 and Ingrid Harris won her age category in 55:11 to finish 5th overall. Hester Coggin came in 6th in 55:35 closely followed by Jayne Cheslin (55:58) in 7th and Joanna Wisniewska-Barreto (56:16) finishing 8th. Not to be outdone, the men also put in a solid showing led home by the first Almost finisher, Rich Birch who was 12th overall in 47:22. Jean-Phillippe Villain-Chastre pushed him all the way to finish 13th in 47:37. Peter ‘Archie’ Mitchener was the third runner home for the club in 51:37.

A number of runners also tackled the Pershore plum 10km. Katie Coleman lead the Almosts home as 2nd lady overall in a time 0f 44:01. She was followed home by Mike Harris in 46:38 and William Eden in 59:01. The race also saw Sheila Chatterley achieve 3rd in her age category (59:03) and Penny Lewis completing her first race for the club.

The club was represented at the Severn Bridge 10km and Half Marathon with a number of runners tackling the very hot course. In the Half Marathon, Ben Stone led the club home in an impressive 1:34. He was followed by Thom Stevens in 1:43 and Neil Tring in 1:50. Rosemary Hubbard was the first lady home for the club in 1:55. In the 10km, Josh Rimell led the club home in 54:45 but was run close by Jason Hulance (55:56) and Dave Mayo (58:18). Iris Mayo (1:18) and Helen Yarnold (1:22) led the clubs ladies team home.

In other races over the weekend Allan Green continued his relentless repeated marathon weeks by completing the Gravesend Cyclo Park Marathon, an 8 lap route that he finished in 5:07.

As always, club runners completed a range of different parkruns. Prash Sripathi ran Riverfront parkrun finishing 5th in 19:14 and Cheltenham parkrun saw a PB for Alan Mullen in 23:49.

Club runners also ran in the following parkruns: Cambridge, Gloucester North, Killerton, Eden Project, Linwood, Aylesbury, Newent, Colby, Conwy, Tewkesbury, Toyen in Oslo, Melksham, Gloucester City and Ross-on-Wye.

With the summer holidays in full flow, the Almost Athletes running season has seen a quiet week. However, despite a busy few weeks of races and with a number of big events on the horizon, the week saw the usual array of incredible performances by the club’s runners.

Leading the way for the Almosts this week was the brilliant Jayne Murphy, guided by Graham Philpott, completing her first ever Triathlon at Dorney Lake, Windsor showing that Almosts can turn their hand to swimming and cycling as well!

A few Almosts ventured down to Bath to tackle the hilly Two Tunnels Marathon. Josh Hand led the way finishing a fantastic 3rd overall in 3:13. The other Almost Athletes marathon stars were Chris Urwin who finished in 5:30 and Coraline Pearson (6:24). No mention of Marathon stars would be complete without mention of Allan Green who completed the Leila Marathon in St Albans in 4:50.

Vasco Barreto continued his recovery from his recent shoulder operation and decided that a marathon wasn’t recovery enough! He completed the Alps 100, covering the mountainous 50km course in the Swiss Alps in 10:17.

Getting back closer to home, Giles Forster completed the Gargrave Show Seniors Fell Race, a sharp up and down route of 3.2 miles, finishing in 36:24.

In parkruns this week, Mark Stojanov continues to show that hard work pays off as he builds on his great improvements this year. He achieved a parkrun PB of 32:45 at Tewkesbury. Hester Coggin continued her great form by finishing as third lady at Gloucester North. Matt Barnes was the first Almost to complete Cheltenham parkrun finishing 11th in 19:14. Jeanette Gullick was the 2nd lady in 22:14. Cheltenham parkrun also saw PBs for Francis Bull in 24:06 and Kevin Balchin in 27:45. Ben Taylor was the 2nd runner home at Newent, completing quite a week of parkruning achievements for the club!

As always, the weekend saw a wide variety of parkrun tourism with Almosts travelling near, far and wide to complete the following parkruns: Black Park, Kingsway, Swindon, Forest of Dean, Bury St. Edmunds, Peterborough, Eastville, Cirencester, Gloucester City, Prospect, Teignmouth Promenade, California Country, Ross-on-Wye.

Almost Athletes stormed to both male and female team victories at The Bugatti 10k. Matt Polson was first Almost home, taking 8th place in 38:56. Josh Hand followed close behind in 39:07 for 9th place, and Matt Barnes completed the men’s team with 40:19. The winning ladies team was made up of Amy Sheer (44:04 and 1st FV35), Katie Coleman (45:45) and Helena Youde (46:32). There was also a LV65 age category win for Pauline Bargus (56:24), a 10k PB for Kev Fairs (54:27) and course PBs for Richard Knightley (49:16) and Mark Stojanov (1:11).

Barnes was also in action at Standish Woodland Chase, finishing first of eighteen Almosts in 1:09. Neil Tring was next in 1:17, then Peter Mitchener in 1:18. Ingrid Harris was 1st FV55 in 1:23, followed by Joanna Wisniewska-Baretto (also 1:23) and Hester Coggin (1:26).

The inaugural Wyedean Relay took place in wet and windy conditions. Two Almost teams completed the ten-leg unmarked trail route from Chepstow. Neil Tring ran the last, technical leg in 20:09 to finish 2nd overall. The teams were: Mark Eavers, Matt Proome, Alison Hume, Richard Knightley, Danny Carroll, Jo Foster, Martin Foster, Lorraine Taylor, Ceinwen Davies, Steve Yarnold; and Andrew Wilkinson, Chloe Farrar, Rob Hume, Claire Gallagher, Steve Taylor, Sarah Fennell, Laura Tring, Lou Tring, Sam McGrath, Neil Tring.

There was victory for Ian Coggin at the Cotswold Ultra. He finished the 44 mile course in 9:01 to take 1st place. At the Salisbury 54321 Trail Races, Allan Green ran the marathon in 5:32, while Mariel Chretien and Jackie Slaughter took on the half-marathon and finished in 3:00. Anne-Marie and Mark Willicott were in Birmingham to take part in the Canal Canter Marathon, crossing the line in 4:22. Julie Averiss travelled to Dublin and ran the RocknRoll Half Marathon in 2:55.

At Cheltenham parkrun, newly married Patricia Dendy ran in her wedding dress alongside husband Kevin. Prash Sripathi was first Almost home in 20:17, and Jeanette Gullick took 2nd lady in 21:54. Jane Russell gained a new PB of 28:39. The club was represented at parkruns near and far. Sarah Wallbridge and Virginia Pawlyn were at Tewkesbury, and Dave and Iris Mayo visited Cirencester. Helen McGuire was at Cardiff, Mark Stojanov ran at Cannon Hill, Dave Nelson at Worcester Pitchcroft and Malc Smith at Nobles. Andrea Hardy ran at Abingdon, Mike Bryce and Rich Smith at Tetbury, and Danny Carroll and Steve Taylor at Ross on Wye. Further afield, Matt polson was 6th at Ormeau, Belfast, Piotr Michalski was 8th at Slodowo, Poland, and Norm Lever was in Marrechia, Italy.

Entries are open for this year’s Meteor Mile, which takes place at Gloucestershire Airport on Saturday 31st August at 7:45pm. This is a measured one mile race that takes place on the airfield at Staverton. Taking place against the setting sun, it is a unique opportunity for adults and children alike one to run along a lit runway.

There are medals for all finishers, as well as prizes for the first male and female finishers, both adult and under-15. We are limiting on-the-day entries, so visit the race page, at https://almostathletes.co.uk/meteor-mile.html and beat the 26th August deadline for online entries. There is also a Facebook page for information (Almost Athletes – Meteor Mile 2019).

Please click link for Provisional Results.

Please email almostathletes@hotmail.com for any queries or corrections.

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