Sam Weston

4 posts

Lots of runners, mostly in purple shirts and medals outside a village hall

A very busy March race report

It’s been a fantastic month for the Romsey Road Runners. We’ve had great results in ultramarathons to 10ks and everything in between!

The start of the month saw the last race of the CC6 Cross Country season at Itchen Valley Country park. For a club of our size we ranked very well in the final championship standings. With Jonathan Pillinger-Cork winning his age category and coming 4th overall, Hannah Shutt 4th in the women’s results, Ray Webb 2nd in his age category and Penny Jennings, Lin Windsor and Elizabeth Prinsep 4th, 5th and 6th in theirs. As always it was a great season and a fantastic free way for members of the club to get into cross country racing. We look forward to the next season in the autumn.

10 runners in Romsey vests at CC6 event
Runners at the final CC6 Race at Itchen Valley Coutry Park

Sunday 17th March was an extremely busy day for members of the club. Four members participated in the Hundred Hills 50k Ultra Marathon in the Chilterns. Hannah Shutt finished in just 5:01:22 and was 4th lady, Ian Ralph in 5:20:16, Steven Melligan-Hart in 5:28:27 (his first ultra!) and Susie Parker in 6:36:25.

Four runners in various attire at the Hundred Hills ultra
Susie Parker, Ian Ralph, Steven Melligan-Hart and Hannah Shutt at the Hundred Hills Ultra-Marathon

As a bit of a club staple it was no surprise that we had a great turn out at the Salisbury 10 with seven club members taking part. Matt Bennett was 7th with another strong performance, finishing in just 57:20. Other great club results were Mark Stileman (1:01:26), Neil Jennings (1:08:19), Elizabeth Prinsep (1:12:03 – a 10 mile PB!), Duncan MacDonald (1:16:07), Keith Morris (1:19:33) and Penny Jennings (1:27:25).

Hayley Weston ran the Great Welsh Marathon in Llanelli, Carmarthenshire and won the women’s race in a massive PB time of 3:07:24. We look forward to seeing how she does at the Boston Marathon in a few weeks!

Hayley and two other female runners with their trophies and a person dressed as an elephant
Hayley Weston and other female winners at the Great Welsh Marathon with Gorgeous George the mascot

We also had results from Lottie Budd who did the Bath Half in 2:23:28, Nikkie Baptista who ran the Milton Keynes Festival of Running 20 miler in 3:21:24 and John Wheatley and Nigel Hemsted who ran the Ox ‘N’ Wood Trail 20 miler in 2:50:38 and 3:32:15.

The next weekend on the 24th March saw another huge race for the club at the Eastleigh 10k with a huge 27 finishes from the club. Alex Prinsep who has been going from strength to strength over the past year got a 10km PB of 33:43, Alex Young wasn’t far behind with 33:56 and we had some amazing age category results with Amanda Hull, Elizabeth Prinsep and Nigel Hemsted all getting 4th in their age categories and Ray Webb coming 5th in his.

The Eastleigh 10k is my 7th and shortest race to date this year – mainly running Halves, my first was in Tromsø- northern Norway in January. My running calendar is pretty full the next few months including 5 different countries. Eastleigh is special and always so well attended by the Romsey Road Runners!

Lottie Budd

Cracking day for running the Eastleigh 10k. Felt good, but just missed my PB by 1 minute.

Mark Judkins

On the same day believe it or not, we also had Em Gordon run the LDWA Cerne Giant Challenge 20 miler in 4:19:09, Tam Ryan run the 30 version in 7:16:01.

“I did the Cerne Giant Challenge on Sunday, it’s an LDWA event starting & finishing in the picturesque village of Cerne Abbas, gorgeous day rather muddy & hilly with almost 4,500ft elevation but over 31miles of beautiful Dorset countryside.” Tam Ryan

Jack Wood ran the Thames Riverside 20 miler in 2:47:57, David Morrison ran the Fleet Half Marathon in 1:21:00 and Penny Overy run the Queen Elizabeth Country Park Trail Half Marathon in 2:32:00.

14th January RRR Race Report

This weekend saw two well attended races for the Romsey Road Runners; the 36th annual George Skeates Charity Event in Stockbridge and the 4th CC6 event of the season at Ocknell Campsite.

The George Skeates event is a low key affair with options to walk, run or cycle either around 3 or 8 miles on a cross country course. The event has been running since 1986 after George passed away in a motorsport accident in 1985. It was originally organised by Mike Crossman and is now run by his son Jeb in aid of the George Skeates Benevolent Fund which benefits a number of charities.

This year saw thirteen club members enter the event. Karen Keane said that it’s a “Great charity event. Fabulous scenic route with yummy cakes and raffle to finish. Everyone’s a winner!”

13 runners and a dog in running gear at the George Skeates Run
Thirteen runners and a dog at the George Skeates Charity Event

We also saw the 4th CC6 race of the season organised by Hardley Runners and Totton Running Club at Ocknell Campsite in the New Forest. These races are all around 5 miles and are free to members of a number of local clubs including Romsey; they are a fun, low pressure way to get into cross country racing.

Ten Romsey Road Runners competed this weekend, with some great results; Ray Webb coming second in his age category and Jonathan Pillinger-Cork coming third in his. Jonathan said that this week’s race was “Great hilly, muddy and briefly sunny course”.

9 runners in Romsey Road Runners kit at the CC6
Romsey Road Runners at the Ocknell Campsite CC6 Race

New Forest Stinger 2023

This Sunday saw a great turnout of Romsey Road Runners at the New Forest Stinger, as well as a win! The 10 Mile event has been organised by Totton Running Club for a number of years and has always been popular with the club. However this year must have been a record turnout with thirteen entries and some very strong performances!

Matt Hammerton took the overall win in 1:00:37; almost 7 minutes ahead of the second place finisher! Matt has recently qualified for the notoriously tough Ultra Trail du Mont Blanc, having spent the last few years eating Ultra Marathons for breakfast. He holds the fastest known time for Clarendon Way as well as the Pembrokeshire Coastal Path and won the Test Way Ultra in 2022.

Hannah Shutt was 3rd woman in 1:11:40 and Sue Sleath saw a return to form and with 1st V60 woman in 1:17:16. Neil Jennings finished in 4th place in 1:07:47.

Despite the challenging wet and slippery conditions there were some great times across the board; Ian Ralph 1:11:27, Steven Melligan-Hart 1:13:06, Lorna Crouch 1:17:46, Duncan MacDonald 1:19:30, Nigel Hemsted 1:22:46, Susie Parker 1:27:28, Em Gordon 1:28:51, Penny Jennings 1:34:42 and Penny Overy 1:38:44.

A number of runners in Romsey vests at the New Forest Stinger
Romsey Road Runners at The Stinger
Salisbury 10 Mile 2022 Finishers

Race Report – 2nd & 3rd April 2022

The weekend of 2nd – 3rd April was another busy one for the club, with Matthew Hammerton kicking things off at the Test Way Ultra on Saturday. Matt won the fifty-mile race, his first competitive run over that distance, in an amazing time of 6:41, a clear 40 minutes ahead of the nearest competitor. He said:

“It was a fantastic event with great conditions. The Test Way was largely dry allowing for a quick pace with minimal boggy bits! With the support of Ian Ralph as crew, I was able to achieve a long-term ambition of running the Test Way with the bonus of achieving 1st place.”

On the same day, Mark Nixon completed the Podium 5k in a fantastic time of 14:50.

Salisbury 10 Mile 2022 Finishers
Salisbury 10 Mile Finishers

On the Sunday, Alice Lane completed the 24k, 942m elevation KVK race in Cornwall in an impressive time of 3:15, despite taking a nasty fall on the route, while Andy Brown (1:08), Susie Parker (1:20 PB), James Byrne (1:22 PB), Nigel Hemsted (1:14), Rob Gowman (1:37 PB), Neil Jennings (58:49), Penny Jennings (1:24), Duncan MacDonald (1:14 PB), Alex Prinsep (58:54 PB), David Morrison (1:07) and Dorota Koschmidder-Hatch (1:34) all ran the local Salisbury ten-mile race. Penny said: “I was thrilled to finish in under 1:25 and found the event brilliantly organised”, while Nigel said:

“We had a perfect morning for running – cool and bright with no wind. The course was very attractive, following the river to the Woodfords and then back to Salisbury.”

James, who was running in his first ten-mile event, said the route went through “superb countryside with a very supportive group of runners,” and Susie noted that it was “a really lovely route, taking in some of the most picturesque scenery round Salisbury.”

Also on the Sunday, Elizabeth Prinsep took first in age in the Manchester Marathon with a brilliant new PB of 3:19. Liz said of the event:

“24,000 runners lined up in near perfect weather conditions. The day started cool but it stayed dry and there was hardly any wind. It was a flat course and there was good crowd support. I felt strong and kept a consistent pace throughout and was really pleased with my new PB.”