We are obviously all looking forward to brighter days ahead in 2021 and the return of “proper” events at some time in the not too distant future. However, we’re not there yet and so we thought we’d try and come up with something to focus on in the dark days of January, particularly for any of you for whom motivation might be a struggle at the moment!
Andy Inchley, Chairman of LBAC gave a review of the year at the AGM on Wednesday 6 February. We’ve added a rough transcript for you to enjoy. Please note that this is not a complete record of all LBAC’s achievements in 2018 as there were so many!
We punch way above our weight by regularly finishing mid-table in the CCCL and this is something I need to remember. Every year I have frustrations that I know we can win prizes if we can get close to our best team out at each fixture, and we have proved this recently, but as soon as we lose a few runners we don’t quite have the strength to challenge.
British Transplant Games
by Nick Stonehouse
In a slightly different way of producing a report for the website, Nick has created a presentation for us of his exploits at the 2018 British Transplant Games in Birmingham. You can download the full presentation here, or scroll down click to see screenshots of the individual slides. Congratulations Nick, top work!
John Adam joined the club in February 1987 after he moved to Leighton from Milton Keynes. He became a member during a period when there was a real running boom and we had many vets of a very high standard. John was a good runner and certainly helped in many team competitions, particularly in off-road competitions, which he loved. Throughout his time with the club he regularly entered tough hilly races such as the Aldbury 5 and the infamous Coombe Hill Run as well as the Herbert’s Hole 10K, while encouraging others to join him.
He was always very keen to be part of a relay team, and this continued right into his seventies when he could still be found on a Saturday in June taking on the mud and undulations of the Greensand Ridge and following the race to it’s conclusion in a village pub. Then at that bar, when there was a line-up of ales and lagers you always knew the one cider in the order would be destined for John.
He was a good runner on the road too and as one of the more senior members in recent years, set many records in the over 65 and over 70 age groups. In his younger years a 39:03 10K as a 45 year old was probably his peak, but still running just over 40 minutes for 5 miles at the age of 65 is pretty impressive too. Even last year he was still regularly taking on the Rushmere parkrun course and enjoying his running.
John was a very popular member socially too. He followed just about all sports and was always keen to enter into a discussion about any of them, particularly rugby, and he was a regularly visitor to Saracens with some other club members.
John will be greatly missed by the club and it’s members and we send our heartfelt condolences to his family. He will be long remembered by all those who came to get to know him and his contributions to the club will be forever retained in the club’s archives.
- Organising and managing all English national cross country championships.
- Selecting athletes to represent England in cross country competition and managing those teams.
- Promoting and supporting the development of cross country running.
They also confirm a new president or the year. This is an honourary title given to people who have contributed hugely to the sport over a number of years.
The new president only took up running in his late 30’s after entering the 1983 London marathon a subsequently New York in the same year. Despite tennis being his main sport in those days, a house move meant that he left his long-time tennis club. The following year he joined a small local athletics club with two of his sons, and almost immediately took on the fledgling junior section which included them and he oversaw this for a number of years.
As his passion for the sport and his club grew, he became club chairman, but wanted to do more so became secretary and did that for many years. He also took on the primary organisation of the club’s road race and of course the home cross-countries, of which there have been over 30! This didn’t just include league fixtures, but County champs, Eastern champs and the North of the Thames champs.
At the same time he got involved with the county association and immediately became county team manager, which he has now been doing for around 30 years and continues to do.
In all his running over the years he favoured long-distance, but certainly had good speed too, as a couple of club sports day 100m showed. He was never one of the best runners in the club as he came to it too late, but was always useful in a team and reached his best around the age of 50 when still running just over 3 hours for the marathon. At this time he ran a V50 club record 2:14 for 20 miles, which we have only recently realised when searching through old files.
All of this still wasn’t enough involvement though, so he got involved with the ECCA a number of years ago and has held the post of treasurer for some time. This means he’s at all of their events and meetings, wherever they are in the country. However, it’s being in the middle of a field in the middle of winter – usually with a bloody hand, from a stake/mallet incident – shouting at every runner he knows as they struggle past up a hill, that he really loves.
He is still running strongly now and setting and breaking club V70 records. As Leighton Buzzard we are a small club who have been punching far above our weight for some time. We’ve had high moments, with a Southern XC champion and World Veterans champion, and we’ve certainly had a few low years too, but it is a fantastic honour for one of our number to be recognised on a national level for their thirty years of massive commitment to a sport that has seen a huge resurgence in recent years.
Thank you and congratulations to Richard Inchley