Captains’ Report – 2006-07
2006-07 has generally been a quiet year in terms of racing, interspersed with some high quality performances from many of our athletes. Our ability to field occasional boys’ and girls’ teams gives us some hope that we can eventually improve our senior teams rather than continually relying on our veterans.
The XC season was a bit of a mixed bag, starting well, but ultimately attendances falling away - only the rejuvenated Steve Costall fulfilling all 7 fixtures. We were able to field an U15 boys’ team for the first time for a while at Mansfield and we hope to be able to build on that this year. The Club were successful at the county Championships where the senior men were pleased to win bronze medals. Peter Swaine’s 6th position was particularly noteworthy. The ladies topped this with Sarah Haines leading the senior ladies team to silver and the Veteran ladies team of Toni, H and Karen striking gold. The men finished 22nd and 2nd Leicestershire team at the Midlands XC. Top class performances from Peter Swaine, Sarah Haines, Megan Booler and Jessica Edge secured their selection for the Inter-Counties XC. The Bill Alexander trophies were won by Jessica Edge, Sarah Haines, Toni Boa, Steve Costall and Will Clapp.
Dean Rushby entered his first year as LRRL co-ordinator and proved himself a worthy successor to Maurice Gray. Turnouts were generally good, being particularly strong in the V60 section. One or two of the newer ladies made their debuts here.
The men started their road relay season with a weakened team, but still achieved National qualification at the Midland Twelve Stage Relays, finishing in 22nd, followed by 61st in the National, with excellent performances by Sean Fenwick and Jason Pitcher in both. The ladies, meanwhile, were 16th in the Six Stage Relay and 36th in the National championships, with a particularly strong run from Sarah.
Elsewhere, Sean won the Stanwick 10k whilst Mark Davis hit a half-marathon pb at Belvoir with 1.19.29. The men finished 3 teams at the Livingston Relays, where the A team was an excellent 5th. Not to be out-done, the ladies also finished 3 teams, with their A team gaining silver and Sarah running the fastest lap of the day.
There were some fine performances in the London Marathon – Mark Davis ran 2.48, Steve Costall 2.58 but arguably the most impressive result (for an 800m runner) was Jason Pitcher’s 3.19.
The EMGP was generally disappointing in terms of attendance with only half-a-dozen completing the necessary 5 races. Alan Hawkes won a couple of V55 prizes, whilst Claire Ellwood’s progress was eye-catching.
We finished three full teams in the Round Leicester Relay on yet another hottest day of the year. The men finished an excellent 4th and were in podium contention most of the way round. Dean Rushby’s assistance was again invaluable. Justin Lack and Kevin Dinsdale had sound debuts, whilst Paul Booler ensured that a second men’s team successfully completed the course. Lin Farrow’s first foray into RLR organisation was ultimately successful, with Yvonne Barber greatly helping to relieve the day’s stress.
Toni Boa distinguished herself again with some high class race walking. She has carried one or two others along with her, Mairi MacLean’s 12th place in the Inter-Counties walk being noteworthy. In the European veterans’ Championships in Helsinki, Toni gave an outstanding performance in her first attempt at this type of event by winning a silver medal in the 5k road walk and gaining 3rd place in the indoor 3000m. She was subsequently selected for her first GB vest in Belgium in the 3k walk, an honour that reflects great credit not only on her, but also on the club.
Toni Boa won the inaugural Club Road-Running Championship. This second year of events have been poorly supported so far, except for The Woodlands fixtures.
On the track, team highlights of the season include the consolidation of Matt Green’s Senior Men’s track and field team and Tony Harrison’s Vet Men’s third successive Cup Final success, achieved partially by the cunning ploy of giving the other teams a start in the league fixtures by not turning up for the first one! Individual successes were many. The County Championships yielded golds for Shane Edge (hammer), Andy Wilkinson (pole vault), Bradley Williams (800m), Megan Booler (800m) and Toni Boa (3000m walk, 800m and 5000m); silver for Jess Edge (800m) and Will Clapp (800m), two bronze for Will (1500m and 5000m) and one for Shane (1500m). The Midland Masters Championships yielded gold for Katy Williams in the 100m and Toni in the 5k walk.
Matt Green had a notable double in the first T&F meeting with victories in the 3000m steeplechase and 100m hurdles with only 5m recovery (I hope Dick isn’t thinking of adding this to his sessions). Dan Worley performed in many events when his studies allowed, whilst Dean Rushby helped out in whatever way he could. Jason Pitcher’s performance in the Midland Masters with wins in the 400m, 1500m and anchor leg of the medley relay was probably the highlight of the men’s masters’ season. Andy Wilkinson raised his pole vault pb to 3.30. Katy Williams has consolidated her position as queen of the sprints with many fine performances, whilst Linda Lawton also showed some impressive speed at the Cup Final, where the ladies finished a close 2nd, only 6 points behind the winners. It was good to see Penny Roberts make her comeback.
As ever, we would like to thank those people who have worked particularly hard behind the scenes to enable us to achieve our goals, namely, the coaches and officials.
Our aims for the next year are success in the key club events : -
County, Midland and National Cross-Country
Midland and National Road Relays
Track and Field Leagues
Round Leicester Relay
Why not check the dates and gear your training to peak for these events?
Rick Brown, Men’s Captain, Cross Country and Road