01 Feb 2019 Awards Presentation Night, 31st January 2020
Penarth and Dinas Runners like a “good social”, and even better if there’s a chance of bling, top banter and a brain-busting quiz!
Nearly forty of us gathered at Penarth Athletic Club last night to celebrate the success of our most consistent runners; winners in the 2019 Club Championships, Most Improved, and the “Full Setters”, those very loyal members who attended every one of the five fixtures in the Gwent Cross Country League last year. But it was also a chance to salute two members at the very heart of the Club…the Member of the Year, voted for by the membership, and the Chairman’s Choice (also influenced by the membership!)
Here are the Trophy tables in all their star-filter glory (thanks as ever to Malcolm Bradley, our resident Snapper)…..
Member of the Year was awarded to the hugely popular Lisa Cleary, who had a roller coaster of a year in 2019, but throughout some difficult times kept smiling and exuding positivity, always encouraging others and praising their efforts. Lisa had some wonderful plaudits sent through, and this one stands out…
“As we have chatted about, it can be very hard to get back into training after injury, so my hat goes off this year to Lisa Cleary who has made a remarkable job of returning to fitness and has very much inspired me to keep going with my running. I also find her exceptionally friendly and encouraging when I am at Club and she is great at keeping us all up to date with (and again encouraging us to enter) lots of races, not just X country and our championship races. I did my first cross country in 35 years this season thanks to Lisa!”
Chairman’s Choice was the indefatigable Lyn Evans…..the Chairman’s much-valued wingman, hugely knowledgeable of the local running scene, a meticulous Club Treasurer and superbly-organised Race Director. And in 2019 Lyn notched it up another level by taking on the launch of a new parkrun in the heart of P & D Land, Cosmeston Lakes Country Park. We are truly blessed to have people like Lisa and Lyn at the centre of our Club.
These two then helped the Chairman hand out the Awards, the first of which went to the Improvers of the Year. Bethan Apglyn had a phenomenal 2019, and picked up the Women’s Award for the 2nd year on the trot! Her stellar progress at 5k has now catapulted her into the Top Five Club Rankings, with times of 21:06 and 20:49 (parkrun), and she backed this up with a 2 minute PB at 10k (44:09), a jump from 83:38 to 76:36 at 10 miles, and a great marathon time of 3:42:32 (improving from 3:54:08).
The Men’s Improver Award went to Steven Barker, and the pace he’s been running in recent track sessions suggests 2020 will be another productive year! Steven knocked his 5k time down from 21:26 to 20:42, 5 mile from 35:08 to 34:29 and 10k a massive jump from 52:12 to 45:49. He had an equally impressive performance leap at Half Marathon, improving from 1:58:25 to 1:46:30. Steven was also rewarded for his loyalty to the Club, picking up one of the precious Full Setters mugs (the other two were awarded to Anna Helsing and Cath Tailby).
We then moved on to celebrate the success of our two Overall Club Champions…both of them victorious for the 2nd year in succession.
Catherine Barker had a remarkable win for the Women’s title, having sustained a serious arm injury from a bike accident in the early part of the year. This didn’t prevent Cath from being first P & D Woman finisher in every Club Champs’ race she ran, apart from the Cardiff Half Marathon. Not only that, she moved up to 3rd on the Club Rankings for her parkrun time (20:41), and 2nd in the 5 mile Rankings with a superb run at the Old Father Time race in December (33:37).
The Men’s Championship was totally dominated by Ben Butler-Madden, unbeaten all year, and recording some fantastic new PBs along the way. Ben’s 15:49 for 5k was good enough for 3rd in the Club Rankings (fastest time for a Club Member in a parkrun) and his 33:17 was good enough for 4th spot at 10k. He was 2nd ranked at Half Marathon (72:50) before taking the Marathon rankings by storm, with a stunning 2:32:23 Club Record at London in April.
We then moved on to recognise our Age Category winners, as follows….
Veteran Women 55: Winner Bev Warburton (no 2nd/3rd, you need to run at least 4 races)
Veteran Women 45: Winner Lisa Cleary, Runner-up Kath Petersen, 3rd place Andrea Goodfellow
Veteran Women 35: Winner Ruth Cann, Runner-up Louise Hunt, 3rd place Melissa Smith
Senior Women: Winner Bethan Apglyn, Runner-up Kate Cheshire, 3rd place Katie Clark
Veteran Men 60: Winner Terry McCarthy, Runner-up Malcolm Bradley, 3rd place Chris Nellins
Veteran Men 50: Winner Steve Goodfellow, Runner-up James Buckingham, 3rd place (tied) Peter Trott & Nigel Adams
Veteran Men 40: Winner Colin Caesar, Runner-up Gareth Davies, 3rd place Jon Lewis
Senior Men: Winner Ian Southwell, Runner-up Kit Lambert, 3rd place Nathan Christoforato
Finally we recognised the efforts of our “off-roaders”, who took on an interesting selection of hill and trail races put together by Malcolm B.
Women’s Off Road Championship: Winner Louise Hunt, Runner-up Yvonne Williams (no 3rd place awarded)
Men’s Off Road Championship: Winner Malcolm Bradley, Runner-up Terry McCarthy, 3rd place Chris Nellins
Here are a selection of people and households (!) who picked more than one award….(Chris Nellins was also presented with his 1st place V65+ plaque from last week’s Lliswerry 8 mile road race)
We were delighted to facilitate a Charity raffle organised by Emma Healy, raising funds for Crimestoppers, her chosen charity in this year’s Virgin Money London Marathon. Emma was gob-smacked with the generosity of members, and managed to collect a whopping £130. You can donate further on her Virgin Money Giving Page.
As a “warmup” for activities later in the evening, Lyn Evans organised a parkrun quiz, an elimination competition that whittled down to one winner Ben Butler-Madden. Ben was able to sprint to victory with his final answer “5” (the question being “How many current P&D Members on the parkrun UK home page?”)
Finally we had the crazy bedlam that is….THE MANDY BARRINGTON QUIZ! Seven teams of 5 or 6 braniacs (I use the word advisedly) took on the European Marathon Picture Quiz (who knew there was a marathon in Halifax?!), the Bingo Challenge and The Random Round, which made “Pop Master” seem like a stroll in the park!
At the end of it, the victorious team was “Four Men and a Lady”, comprising of Nigel Adams, Brian Law, Kath Petersen, Mark Frost and Andy Petersen.
Congratulations guys (and gal!), enjoy your winnings!