THE RUNDOWN – 12TH FEBRUARY: XC (MEN’s & LADIES), EXETER HALF MARATHON, CANNOCK CHASE 10 & PARKRUN

Men’s XC – Race 4 (by Nick Woolley)

K&D men’s final fixture of the league season was at the notorious hilly and windy Burton Dassett Hills Country Park. While the weather was unseasonably calm for this time of year, the course made up for it with lung busting climbs and perilous cambers and descents.
Despite key members either injured or racing elsewhere, the team put on the best performance of the year to finish 5th, and narrowly beat Solihull and Small Heath for the first time this season. Pride restored for now.
Individually, despite a fall Nick Woolley led the line in 11th, and there were excellent performances from newcomers Matt Hipwell in 44th and particularly Ben Jones in 48th (improving from 101st last time out!). Special mention to Torsten Roesler who despite some injury and illness is looking ahead to the spring in good form after returning to the A team as 6th counter.
The biggest mention has to go the Masters Team, who finished an outstanding 2nd overall in the league, behind Western Tempo who are clearly a cut above everyone else. Hopefully this bodes well for the next generation of K&Ders when they’ve got such a talented group of old men as their inspiration!
Season Reflections
To be honest the season hasn’t quite gone as planned, with our hopes to bounce back straight to Division 1 not being realised, and our final position firmly mid-table (7th out of 14). Our year was affected by injuries, illnesses and important family commitments, and as ever it’s easy to ponder what could’ve been if everything had gone to plan.
However, there have been some real highlights, with newcomers Matt, Ben and Lewis performing really well to bolster the A-team and provide some fresh blood alongside grizzled veterans. The team spirit has definitely returned after the last year where we were routinely beaten by the Uni kids half our age (well, some of us). It was also great to have 4 different volunteers for the races – Paul Baker, Paul Bentley, Jon Jennings and Tim Price who played key roles and allowed the rest of the team to do what they do best.
Finally, Greg Turner has stepped into his role as captain with aplomb, marshalling the troops, contributing to scoring and most crucially getting people to the venue without an unexpected detour via the league chairman’s house (for those unaware last year Greg happily navigated the team to a housing estate in Northampton rather than the actual race venue, which was fortunately only a few miles away.)
As ever, if anyone has been inspired by our performances this year and would like to join the fun, there is an XC WhatsApp group where the battle stories are shared and race transport organised.
For those who are racing the Nationals in 2 weeks time, enjoy it! It’s probably the most competitive race you’ll ever be part of. For everyone else, well done on the season and I’ll see you all for more fun in the mud next year.
Ladies’ XC (by Katie Price)
This weekend the ladies also headed over to Burton Dassett for the final race of the cross country season. With many injuries on the ladies team we had as many supporters as we had runners, but this is the team spirit we have at K&D in that even when we can’t run we still go anyway and cheer the team on. With the supporters spread out amongst the course there were cheers all around which I am told was the best part of running (even if Jane did get the sisters mixed up and cause some sibling rivalry).
The course is a tough and very hilly course but luckily the conditions were dry under foot and in general ( remember the year it was freezing with side rain). First home for K&D was Monica Green who was 50th taking on the young university girls which is amazing. Everyone had a great race, and even when they finished they all hung around the finish area to cheer on the rest of our small team of 8.
Overall in the season, Division 1 has been tougher, but with fighting spirit from the ladies we’ve had a great season. We have finished 16/17 overall so likely to be taking on Division 2 next season, but as most of the team sit within the Masters League we came an amazing 2nd in this league. Again Monica is star of the season who came 17th in the Masters League.
Ladies, you have done yourselves proud this season, you’ve stood on the front row of every start, you’ve taken on the cold weather (no rain this season) you’ve provided cakes to keep us all fuelled, we’ve learned tent building skills, we’ve laughed, cheered and supported, but mostly the team spirit has been amazing as always. Take a break (if you are not marathon training) and we look forward to the road relays coming up soon.
One final thanks for our team volunteers Jo, Linda and Katie, without volunteers we lose points and it’s always nice to have a familiar face as the finish line.
Club Curry Night
Saturday evening also saw a good turnout for the first evening social of 2023 – Club Curry night! Many thanks to Amelia Crees for organising the event which was enjoyed by all who attended
Exeter Half Marathon
Men’s Captain Greg Turner travelled south on Saturday to Exeter to compete in the popular half marathon, coming a superb 12th overall in 1 hour and 21 minutes.
Cannock Chase 10 mile Trail Race 
Just one other race to report on this weekend: well done to Nicky Evans completing the challenging Cannock Chase Trail race in 1 hour and 35 minutes

Parkrun Roundup

Slightly lower numbers this week due to the XC races later in the day, but still a decent attendance on over 40 K&D members. Well done to Ben Jones for 1st overall, and to Emma Rice and Adeba Jama for 1st and 2nd ladies at Brueton, and to Jake Duddy for his new PB. Full results in the table below:

Parkrun Position Time PB/Top 3
Rosliston parkrun
Sara ROWELL 147 00:38:48
Brueton parkrun
Ben JONES 3 00:18:53 3rd overall
Ed BOWER 6 00:19:08
Paul BENTLEY 7 00:19:11
Ainsley WAINWRIGHT 8 00:19:12
Rob HOULSTON 12 00:19:57
David ROSE 23 00:21:06
Matthew RAY 26 00:21:19
Emma RICE 29 00:21:32 1st Lady
Jake DUDDY 38 00:21:53 PB!
Joseph HOOK 45 00:22:11
Daniel GREGORY 47 00:22:18
Adeba JAMA 50 00:22:28 2nd lady
Stephen RAY 51 00:22:29
Kyle JONES 62 00:22:53
Steve ARMSTRONG 64 00:22:58
Martin HANCOCK 66 00:23:03
Jason PITCHER 70 00:23:14
Graham EDWARDS 79 00:23:42
Russell PALMER 84 00:23:52
Alan GREEN 99 00:24:29
John GARSIDE 117 00:25:06
Karen ELWELL 123 00:25:19
Paul WINWOOD 127 00:25:23
Pete MAKEPEACE 130 00:25:26
Joy BLUD 132 00:25:33
Robert STEWART 143 00:25:51
Lucy CHAPMAN 145 00:25:54
Keith WHITEHEAD 147 00:25:56
Kevin TOMKINSON 158 00:26:16
Tanya CRONIN 172 00:26:51
Tasha CAMPBELL 199 00:27:30
Mike DURKIN 205 00:27:38
Neil LETHAM 214 00:27:54
Nigel FOSTER 225 00:28:18
Kelly CRIDLAND 249 00:28:59
James TAYLOR 258 00:29:09
Siobhan COTTER 267 00:29:32
Carly MITCHELL 316 00:31:29
Alan C MARSHALL 334 00:32:15
Susan Margaret WASSELL 355 00:33:39
Gail PARTRIDGE 358 00:33:47
Claire DEELEY 359 00:33:48
Manjit UPPAL 377 00:34:49
Steve MARKS 403 00:39:10
Penelope GARNER 406 00:39:53
Fiona HOLLAND 408 00:39:59
Marie HOWARTH 412 00:40:25
Oxana HAFEEZ 413 00:40:30
Paul JEFFREY 418 00:41:44
Sandra BOOT 440 00:50:33
Lissy CALVERT 444 00:52:57
Gloucester North parkrun
Bruce HAMPTON 63 00:29:28
Tauranga parkrun
Ann SPENCER-DOWDESWELL 91 00:32:14
Hove Promenade parkrun
Andrew CONNORS 69 00:20:22
Fletcher Moss parkrun
Jack BRISTOW 1 00:18:38
Babbs Mill parkrun
Victoria COOK 47 00:28:06
Louise TAYLOR 71 00:33:08