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No. 164, October 2006



Welcome to October’s Harriers Herald.  Thursday night schedules for October and November are followed by Correspondence received and an update on the Oxford Mail cross-country league. Over the last month, the Harriers have put in some excellent performances in a variety of events.  I report on the Boneshaker Duathlon, Sus reports on the Isle of Wight Fell Race Series, and there are brief results for the Aldbourne 10K and the High Peak 40.  Mo’s Website Update features racing abroad, and how to keep up your motivation for winter running.  Mo’s Events Diary covers a variety of road and multi-terrain races taking us through to the beginning of 2007.  Thanks to Mo and Sus for their contributions to this issue.



Copy date for November’s Harriers Herald: Wednesday 1st November


Brief items:

·        Any more ideas for a venue for this year’s club Christmas meal?  If you pick up any good menus please bring them along on a Thursday for the rest of us to peruse.

·        Don’t forget to have a go at Susanne’s Cycle Challenge (see last month’s edition).

·        I have just written off to apply for our Club Guaranteed Entry to the 2007 London Marathon.

·        Now the nights are drawing in, be sure to wear some fluorescent or light-coloured clothing for evening running (especially you Philomena!).


Thursday night schedule for October

Thurs    5th                    Sue to lead

Thurs    12th                  Handicap Race

Thurs    19th                  Martin to lead

Thurs    26th                  Mo to lead


Thursday night schedule for November

Thurs    2nd                    Dick to lead

Thurs    9th                    Sus to lead      

Thurs    16th                  Handicap Race

Thurs    23rd                  Kirsty to lead

Thurs    30th                  Andy to lead


Correspondence received


Subject matter


Running Fitness

Entry forms for Brands Hatch Half Marathon & associated shorter races (1 lap of GP circuit; 1 lap of Indy circuit) on 10-02-07

Events diary & notice board

England Athletics

Info. on S.E. Regional Council & request for nomination from Berkshire clubs


Berks, Bucks & Oxon X-C Association

BBO X-C Champs, Maidenhead (18-11-06); BBO AGM

Pass round

Muscular Dystrophy Assoc.

Trail of Trials: 8.5M trail run & walk from Reading to Pangbourne (22-10-06)

Events diary & notice board


Oxford Mail cross-country league 2006 – 2007



Nick from Team Kennet has entered a combined Team Kennet / Compton Harriers team in this five-race cross-country league.


Compton Harriers who have been entered are: Philomena Mburu, Lucy Gettins, Susanne Enhard, Sue Francis, Dick Kearn, Peter Humphreys, Martin Fray, Ryan Morris, Richard Bickerton, Kevin Wilkinson, Andy Buckland and Matt Streeter.  As mentioned previously, entering for the series does not mean you have to run every race, as the scoring team on the day is made up of the first 3 (for ladies) or 6 (for men) team members to finish. 


Race dates and venues for your diaries:

5th November:               Ascott-Under-Wychwood

3rd December:               Culham park

31st December:              Radley

4th February:                 Cirencester

4th March:                     Banbury

The ladies races are about 3 miles, and the mens races about 6 miles.

Nick will send out more information later but, in the meantime, more details can be found at:


Nick asked me to let you know that this year, for the first time, runners will be required to wear a race number, which he will give you on the day.  Therefore, you should arrive in good enough time to find Nick and get your number, and not arrive just before the start (Nick seemed to think this particularly needed to be drummed into Dick & Pete!).



The Boneshaker Duathlon, 17th September



We took part in last year’s inaugural Boneshaker and thoroughly enjoyed it.  The 2006 event promised to be bigger and better so Team SuMo returned to have another go and, hopefully, improve on last year’s performance.  We arrived at Ardington sports field on a fantastic warm and sunny September morning.  At the registration desk, we learned that 115 individuals and 49 teams were taking part.  Since Team SuMo was 7th out of 19 teams last year, a top 15 – 20 finish seemed a realistic goal this time.  Other targets came in the form of Ryan, one of Compton Harriers’ latest recruits, and Sue’s friend Julie, a triathlete from Reading AC, both of whom were taking part as individuals.


The event was organised in a professional and friendly manner.  It has three stages – a 5K run, followed by a 20K cycle and, finally, another 5K run, all mostly off-road.  The three stages can be contested by either teams of two or three, or by individuals.  As last year, I was to do the two run sections and Mo the cycle section.  While he racked up his bike amongst the many others, Mo made the half-joking comment “my first challenge will be to find my bike again!” loud enough for everyone to hear.  I noticed a posey sort of bloke, with a posey sort of bike, cast Mo a rather disparaging look!  Following the pre-race briefing, the runners gathered behind the start line and soon we were off.  The route was the same as last year, pleasantly undulating and varied, including country lanes, a plantation, the Ardington Millennium Green and farm tracks.  I started sensibly and gradually overtook people, my target being the one lady who was ahead of me (she was the eventual individual winner of the ladies event).  I lengthened my stride as I ran down the hill to the transition area, where Mo was waiting impatiently…..


Mo says he had to fight his way through the crowded transition area to be at the front of the queue of waiting team cyclists, because he was expecting me to be one of the first team runners to arrive…..I was 2nd.  Despite his previous concerns, Mo found his bike straight away and set off at break-neck speed.  Half way down the road, he thought ‘S**T!, I can’t keep this pace up!’.  A steady stream of cyclists, including Julie and Ryan, overtook Mo on the climb to the Ridgeway, but he wasn’t bothered, because his plan was to pedal like stink down the hill to Land’s End.  Unfortunately, it was very bumpy so the plan fell apart (but the bike remained in one piece).  The worst part was the next climb, the bike getting stuck in a rut and Mo having to dismount and losing all his momentum.  The best part was the ride back down towards West Ilsley and then Land’s End where he maintained a good speed with no overtakers.  From there on Mo kept up a good pace and maintained his position until, approaching the end, he heard a strange noise behind him, and was overtaken by a cyclist with a flat rear tyre.  This spurred Mo on to chase and pass the man with the flat tyre, who was struggling to corner, and very soon the end of the cycle stage was in sight.


Based on last year’s performance, I knew I had about an hour to wait for Mo.  Time flew, and by the time I’d drunk a bottle of water, eaten a snack, jogged around, and chatted to some other competitors, the leading individuals and teams were finishing the bike section, some having put in sub-50 minute performances.   I waited in the transition area, eyes fixed on the final bend and scanning all the incoming cyclists for one wearing that famous green and white vest.  I was so focused on looking for Mo, that I didn’t notice both Ryan and Julie come in on their bikes and set off on their final run.  After a couple of green-vest false alarms, the real Mo pedaled into transition, hopped off his bike, racked it up, then staggered on very wobbly legs to tag me.  This second run route was the reverse of the first run, so the long uphill was over with at the start.  I felt surprisingly fresh and was spurred on by the fact that I was continually passing people (most of them had dirty bottoms, which meant they had also done the cycle section, so were far more tired than I was!).  I reached the end to find that, although Ryan and Julie had both beaten us, we had all finished within 57 seconds of each other.


We collected our goody bags, which contained some fresh orange juice, a fantastic chocolate brownie and a ‘buff’.  For those not in the know (I was previously one of those people!) a buff is the ‘original multifunctional headwear’.  A versatile tube-shaped piece of material, it can be made into various types of hat, a headband, a neckerchief, a hairband, a wristband……we tried them all!


There was a refreshment stall, a massage tent and a children’s funfair to amuse everyone until the presentations were made to the winning individuals and teams.  Having thoroughly enjoyed the morning, we set off for home wearing our multifunctional headwear.  It was quite late in the day when the euphoria was finally replaced by the inevitable exhaustion!




5K Run

20K Cycle

5K Run

Overall Time

37th individual (52nd overall)

Ryan Morris





39th individual (54th overall)

Julie Rayfield





16th team (57th overall)

Team SuMo





1st Man

Jez Cox





1st Team

Three Amigos





1st Lady (8th)

Hanna Thorner







Isle of Wight Fell Running Series 2006, 23/24 September




Arriving earlier to the Isle of Wight than we expected, Dick had time to take us on a guided tour before arriving at Ventor where we, despite heavy rain, were determinate to walk the off-road part of the first 3-mile race.  Not really aware that the start was app. 380 feet beneath us, Andy and I agreed that the hill looked smaller than we expected so we were happily surprised.  After a change into some dry clothes in the Snail, it was time for our packed lunch.  Afterwards we went to the local pubs, studying the sea waves and measuring sculls numerous times.  At 3 p.m. it was time to find our hotel, Lucy and I were blessed with a big room with bath, the men’s rooms were much smaller and the bathrooms were placed in the cupboard.

Lucy needed to do her study so the rest of us went out to see if we could do some more route investigating on the second race.  But it all seemed a bit hazy for Dick and Martin to remember exactly where the route was so Dick, Andy and Kev decided to go back to the hotel while Martin and I continued the walk.  We never did find the right footpath but it gave us a good appetite for the evening’s meal.



After a good night sleep under my own duvet it was time for Lucy and me to enjoy our breakfast.  Everybody seemed to have eaten before us so we were alone in the breakfast room which gave us the chance to read a card standing at the next table, initially we felt a bit nosey reading somebody else’s card, but only to realize it was for us from our Jan, wishing us good luck – thanks Jan, we were now ready to begin the day’s tasks.


I felt very nervous, so when a runner from Portsmouth introduced himself I must have seemed miles away but he turned out to be a good support for me during the 3 races and at least I now felt less nervous.


We were off and up we went, through the town and up and up and up a loop and back again the same way down as fast as you would dare.  Confused about where the finish line was, I still had a bit left in my legs thinking that we would finish at the same place as the start, but the Portsmouth runner managed to stop me before I went all the way down.  It was great fun.


After a light lunch and a snooze it was time again to race.  This time everybody seemed much more relaxed. For me it turned out to be the one I least enjoyed, I think mentally it was harder than physically and that probably made the difference, plus you had twice the climb and the finish line was now 7 miles away.  But somehow we all finished more or less battered but a dip in the sea cured us and soon we all felt like Vikings again, apart from Lucy who more looked like a dolphin in the sea.



Sunday morning came and we were ready again at the start line.  Perhaps a bit stiff but in my case nothing a good strong coffee could not cure so I felt ok.  10.30 we set off.  Martin was not that far away at the start of the run and Andy was just in front of me while I could hear Dick behind me.  Something was not right - I was thinking I must have set off to fast, I kept expecting to hear Dick’s advising words “don’t set off too fast”, but I didn’t and I felt ok so I continued.


Dick and I ran together for quite some time and it felt good to hear his words “Just like a Monday run”.  The Portsmouth runner also managed to push me with some encouraging words but after the last rise they both left me alone with a girl from London Front Runners.  It could not be anything else than my Jelly Babies that suddenly made my legs strong enough to shake her off so when I reached the mast and now only had app. one mile down hill run left I looked back and could not see anybody and I was now on a high – in front of me was now only a down hill run through the town with uplifting Sunday shoppers and my team waiting encouraging me as I crossed the finish line.


After a final dip in the sea and the presentation, it was time to say goodbye to the Isle of Wight with a feeling of “why have you not done this race before” – it was absolutely brilliant.  So for those of you who do not pencil in Isle of Wight on the 22nd and 23rd of September 2007 you are missing out!


Thanks Dick for organizing the trip; if it was not for you most of us would not even have given it a thought of taking part.


The Harriers did extremely well, returning with plenty of medals and prizes between them for top-three placings.  These included age-category prizes for Sus, Lucy, Dick and Martin, and a team prize for the men.


Compton Harriers also competed in…….

·         Sus was our only representative in the Aldbourne 10K but she had an excellent run, being first lady home and setting a personal best time (44:04) for the course.
·         Dick competed in the High Peak 40-mile race (Buxton) after a break of several years, and ran very well to take 10th spot in a time of 6:59.


Website update…



Although we do have one or two “Global” runners in the club, what about a group running weekend away at a European destination?  To get an idea of destinations and races to enter, together with travel arrangements and costs, the site to visit is .  The site also has some very useful links to all the low-cost airlines and caters for individual and group interests.


Does your motivation shrink as the days get shorter? Training after work might be a tasty prospect when the sun’s still out at 8pm, but it’s not so easy in the dark! For a list of tips on keeping up your motivation just use the following link …



Events Diary: A selection of local and other well known events for your information.  If you need any entry forms, I can email most of them on request and others are likely to be on the club notice board. 

Sunday 8th October 2006

·       HENLEY HALF MARATHON 06 – 10:00 am, Henley Rugby Club, Marlow Rd.,

   Henley (£12.50 before the day; £20 on the day + no chip timing) (Entry form – Club Noticeboard)

·       WOBURN 10K – 10:00 am, Woburn Deer Park.  Entry form on club noticeboard.

Sunday 15th October 2006

·       PRINCE’S TRUST 10K – 10:00 am, Legoland, Windsor  http://

·       TADLEY RUNNERS 10 – 10:00 am, Hurst Community College, Brimpton Road,  Tadley, RG26 5NL


Sunday 22nd October 2006

·       EXMOOR STAGGER (15-17 MILES) & EXMOOR STUMBLE (~ 6 MILES) – 11:00 am, Minehead

·       ABINGDON MARATHON – (1000 entry limit reached)


     10:00 am Reading to Pangbourne (Club Secretary has entry forms if you are interested)

Saturday 28th October 2006

·       BEACHY HEAD MARATHON9:00 am St Bede's School, Duke's Drive, Eastbourne.

Sunday 29th October 2006

·       BARNS GREEN HALF MARATHON11:00 am Barns Green Village,  5 miles south west of Horsham,

     West Sussex.

·       CANDLEFORD CANTER LADIES ONLY 10K – 11:00 am Village Hall,  Fringford, Bicester


·       Sunday 29th October 2006 – RICKY ROAD RUN (9 miles)  10:30 am Chorleywood Working Mens

     Club, Shepherds Lane, Rickmansworth

Sunday 5th November 2006

·       MARLOW HALF MARATHON9:30 am Riley Road Recreation Ground,  Oxford Road, Marlow

·       20th STEVENAGE HALF MARATHON10:30 am (2 mile fun run 10:40 am) Fairlands Valley

     Showground, Stevenage.

·       TIDWORTH 10K – 10:45 am Tidworth Green, Next to Tidworth Oval,  Tidworth, SP9 7AF

Sunday 12th November 2006

·       THE SODBURY SLOG – 11:00 am Chipping Sodbury School, Chipping Sodbury, near Bristol.

Sunday 19th November 2006

·       BROOKS BRIGHTON 10K – 11:00 am Brighton & Hove seafront, start & finish on Madeira Drive.

Sunday 26th November 2006

·       THE MAYLARCH EYNSHAM 10K – 10:30 am at Bartholomew School, Eynsham, Oxfordshire.

Sunday 3rd December 2006

·       LUTON MARATHON10:00 am at Lea Manor Recreation Centre, Northwell Drive, Luton, LU3 1LZ

Sunday 10th December 2006

·       BEDFORD HARRIERS HALF MARATHON10:00 am at Wootton Upper School, Hall End Road,

     Wootton, Beds.

·       ANDY READING 10K – 11:00 am Bicester Sports Association, Chesterton, Bicester

·       TADLEY RUNNERS XMAS XC 5.3  11:00 am Hurst Community College, Brimpton Rd, Tadley,

     RG26 5NL

Sunday 20th May 2007




(Mo – October 2006)