Almosts named as best club in the South West
ALMOST Athletes has been named as the running club of the year for the South West of England by England Athletics
The club will now represent the region at the national awards in January.
It’s a huge honour and, much like the club’s running achievements, the result of many years’ hard work.
It’s a reflection of the friendly nature of the club and the hard work that goes into it by a huge number of volunteers.
The community spirit of the club was in evidence over the weekend, as the club contributed a large number of marshals and volunteers to help make the Cheltenham Half Marathon happen.
As you’d expect, a large club contingent also pounded the streets around town to finish with a lap of a very windy racecourse.
Leading the club home was Matt Barnes in 1:24 which was good enough to rank 35th overall.
He was followed home by two runners who achieved personal bests; Martin Foster (1:26) and Matthew Hickman (1:27).
Olga Goffin did an amazing job to finish 17th woman overall in 1:33. She was followed home by Amy Sheer (1:36) and Katie Coleman (1:38).
Multiple club members achieved personal bests: Jean-philippe Villainchastre (1:29), Duncan Mounsor (1:37), Richard Knightley (1:47), Karen Gomm (1:48), Louise Bryn (1:52), Josh Rimell (1:52), Helen Barker (1:56), Kev Fairs (1:57 which is a massive 13 minute PB) and Sharmila Door (2:14).
In half marathons further afield, Sam Wizard achieved a PB of 1:59 at the Blenheim half, a race that also saw Natalie Jayne finish in 2:18.
Christopher Benjamin completed his 7 th half marathon in the Milton Keynes Autumn race in 2:04. Doubling the distance Marty Ward (5:23) and Dave Nelson (5:40) conquered the challenge of one of the big six major marathons in Berlin while Allan Green completed the Barnstaple marathon in 5:04.
Dave Rogers (3:59), Thom Stephens (4:13) and Giles Forster (5:16) all ran the ‘undulating’ Michaelmas Aston Sub-edge marathon.
Julie and Adrian Courtenay completed the Portishead Coastal path 10km in 1:17, an event in which Sheila Chatterley also ran and Lewis Jones completed the national Three Peaks Challenge in 25 hours.
Lesley Cottle was first in her age category at the Exmouth parkrun, a feat matched by Peter Mitchener at Cheltenham.
Hester Coggin was third woman home at Gloucester City parkrun whilst Prash Sripathi was third overall at the King George V playing field parkrun in Cheltenham, his highest parkrun placing.
As for parkrun tourism, club members went overseas to tackle events in Hesenheide in Germany and Armidale in Australia whilst closer to home, members ran at Wimpole Estate, Clumber Park, Cirencester, Stratford Park and Mallards Pike.
Welfare officer Fiona Barnes, chairman Claire Hawes, Michelle Balchin, holder of the Rich Walklate Trophy and Alison Hume, membership secretary with the award
Almost Athletes at the Cheltenham Half Marathon
Sam Wizard, Natalie Jayne
Dave Nelson in Berlin