Weekly Update 4th April 2023

There was plenty of action at the weekend involving athletes from Wolverhampton & Bilston AC, some short, some long and some somewhere in between.

Let’s start with the event that took the longest to finish, the Midlands Road Relays at Sutton Park, over 12 stages for the men and 6 for the ladies.

The men were off first on the stroke of noon with their first 4 runners having to race over a distance of just shy of 5 ½ miles and their following 8 runners covering a distance a fraction over 5k. Dave Smith was first off the blocks running 32.46 to place the club in 49th, Rob Cartwright brought the position down to 42nd with 31.53, Ben Foster improved the club to 35th with 31.00, Dan Turner ran 30.00 to place the club 31st, and with the long legs completed we were into the shorter stuff with  Dan Maskew running 17.13 to improve to 30th, Dan Brazier moved us up another place with 19.26, Dylan Illidge ran 18.04 and also improved one position, Joe St Quinton maintained that place with 18.48, Tom Pryor held on to 28th with 18.41, Ashley Atkinson ran 18.25 to improve a place to 27th, Rich Amor-Wilkes moved us up to 26th with 18.10 and Danny Malone maintained that position with a 19.10 final leg. That was good enough for the club to finish in a total time of 4.33.36 and qualify for the National Road Relays in a couple of weeks’ time when the best clubs for the north and south will join those from the midlands at Sutton Park once again for another showdown.

The club also entered an incomplete B team after a handful of athletes dropped out because of illness, injury and unavailability. Dave Newport was off first running 36.03, Paul Hammond ran 33.59, Pete Hood 37.35, Dave Norman 37.50, Mark Illidge 21.17, Paul Clarke 19.32, Tony Cheema 20.26, Lee Partridge 22.32, Rob Edwards 23.02 and Darren Owen-Jones ran 22.07.

The ladies were off 20 minutes later over the same distance but running alternate long and short legs for the first 4 legs and two short legs to finish. Beth Tabor ran a fantastic long leg in 34.04 to place the club in 7th, Danni Braine went off on the second leg running a short leg in 23.59 with the club in 21st, Sabrina Thomas moved the club up to 19th with a 36.42 long leg, Audrey Wilson ran 23.25 with the club in 20th, Holly Baddeley moved us up to 17th with 21.48 and Maria Calleia, returning from university, ran 25.13 with the club finally sitting in 21st in a total time of 2.45.11, also gaining a place in the National Road Relays.

There was more action 24 hours later as a small group went to Nuneaton for a Track and Field Open meeting. All three athletes competed over 1500 metres and all lined up in what proved to be  the fastest heat of the day with Louie Lambeth finishing in 3rd place in 4.24.60, Tyler Hawley was 5th in 4.29.37 and Amelia Samuels was 6th in 4.29.73.

A small group travelled to the capital for the London Landmarks Half Marathon, a race that as the title suggests was a 13.1 mile sightseeing tour. Paul Dean was first back for the club in 1.21.08, Lucy Calrow was 348th in 1.27.33, Phil Evans clocked 1.27.54 for 361st place and Emily Simmonds was 1788th in 1.42.29. I apologise if I’ve missed anyone but there were 1150 pages of results and no option to filter these by club.

The spring marathon season kicked off with Jack Pickett taking part in the Great Welsh Marathon in Llanelli finishing in the runners up spot in a rapid 2.30.12. I’m going to sound like the fella on “Gogglebox” when I say in Brighton there was a 251st place for Jay Patel in 3.01.20 and a 3.53.32 finish for Mike Webb who placed 2363rd. And on the continent Dave Joynson completed his 200th marathon in Paris finishing in 3.11.25 to take 4237th place, Gill Mitchell is only a couple of marathons behind on 198 (I think) and ticked off marathon number 197 in the French capital coming to the Arc De Triomphe in 5.02.32 in 46283rd place.

Dave Norman

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