Bircher Time Trial -Aug 22nd 2023

Race Reports

Report By Mike B

The end of August is approaching and the penultimate race in the Croft Ambrey Handicap Series heralds the departure of the balmy days of summer (what summer ? I hear you say). Running conditions were ideal, being dry with a gentle breeze, but it was raining PBs as an excellent turnout of 40 runners competed on the hilly Bircher course.

The expected showdown in the keenly contested AppleJuse rivalry to determine who is Top Cat did not materialise on this occasion, but it was Eric Apperley who was purring as he sliced 12 seconds off the record that Sam Juson had set last month. Whilst Sam was sipping cocktails on an Aegean island paradise (will that lad ever get his priorities right ?), Eric was still recovering from an arduous 20 mile run over the testing hills of the Brecon Beacons (or should I be saying Bannau Brycheiniog ?) just a couple of days ago. Eric had made sure that the Common had been cleared of all sheep to remove any potential trip hazards on his quest to regain his course record and he sped home to register the formidable time of 21.22 – that is motoring.

First across the finish line was a delighted Tom Powell, making her course debut and also a welcome return to form. So bemused was she by achieving such dizzy heights, that she was innocent and unaware of what to do at presentation time. There will be a target etched on her back for the next race. Not far behind her a tense sprint finish contest was taking shape as the wily 79 year old veteran Guy Whitmarsh and the rapidly improving novice Anna Bromley were locked in battle. Guy just held off his younger challenger, but Anna had the consolation of knocking an enormous 3 minutes off the time that she recorded last month. Watch out Eric !

It was a pleasure to welcome back 2 long serving Marks to the handicap series, and they certainly deserve Top Marks for their performances. Mark Lamonby, on the comeback trail after injury, ran way beyond expectations to finish in 21.35, just a single second shy of Sam Juson’s old record, and slotting himself into 3rd place on the listings. Watch out Eric, again ! Meanwhile Mark Paviour, making his first appearance in a number of years, captured the MV60 course record with a determined effort.

Mia Davies set the fastest female time recorded on the night in 28.08, not quite matching her own course record of 26.52 set last year. Slotting into 2nd place in the female listings was Lucy Austin with an impressive 28.38. A sprightly Jo Marriott continued to impress as she recorded the 3rd fastest female time on the night and carved a huge 44 seconds off her own FV55 course record.

Special mention to Frank Luscott who, despite his adversities, dug deep to knock a massive 2.41 off his previous best time.

Thankfully the misguided and dyslexic gang of protesters who were determined to ” Just Stop Oli” got it wrong again and ended up reading a brochure on communes.

The final race in the series will be held on Tuesday 12th September.

PositionRunnerAge CatTime
1Carol PowellFV5040.26Debut
2Guy WhitmarshMV7535.02Debut
3Anna BromleyFV4037.07PB 3.00
4George Thomas SM27.13Debut
5Tom DaviesMV7046.14
6Lucy AustinSF28.38Debut
7Alison DaviesFV3537.14PB 1.18
8Huw WilliamsMV6035.14
9Sue PowellFV6034.05
10Liza AustinFV5532.30
11Toby SpicerMV4529.05PB 1.06
12Frank LuscottMV6539.37PB 2.41
13Sam HarperFV4534.04
14Jo MarriottFV5529.59FV55 Record
15Mia DaviesSF28.08
16Gemma Davies FV4038.37
17Roland PreeceMV5534.28
18Sue Wood FV6538.08
19Mark LamonbySM21.35Debut
20Claire VerranFV4544.08PB 0.16
21Theresa JonesFV5039.00PB 0.21
22Alison BenwellFV6040.08PB 0.01
23Paul ParkerMV5028.46
24Mark PaviourMV6030.11MV60 record
25Joe LynchSM27.02
26Mike HaywardMV6037.10
27Steve PartridgeMV4027.15
28Oli Cameron-SwanMV4534.49
29Eric ApperleySM21.22Course record
30Louise PhillipsFV5040.02Debut
31Rob MartinMV6035.17
32Tori DickinsonFV5540.57
33Bronwyn PreeceSF33.12
34Neil TaylorMV6532.00
35Nikki FergusonSF38.01
36Rob WoodMV6537.04
37Howard VerranMV4532.24
38Gareth LeekSM25.38
39Louise ReevesFV4542.31
40Alison ApperleyFV5562.13

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