Joggers produce excellent individual performances in Virtual Ekiden Relays

The Ekiden Relays, which are normally held in mid-July at the Woodbridge School near Ipswich, went ahead this year as a virtual event. This is a great summer social event on the running calendar, attracting running club teams from all over East Anglia, where participation and team camaraderie are the essential components. Each competing team is composed of 6 members who each run individual legs of 5K(3 members), 10K(2) or 7.2K(1) to make up the marathon distance of 42.2K as a relay. There are open team entries for men and women as well as mixed male/female teams and veteran teams going up to 70+ years.

Throwback to the “Real” Ekiden Relays; those lazy, hazy, crazy days of summer, at Woodbridge School July 2019.

In the virtual competition this year, team members ran their individual legs locally over a course of their choosing from Friday 10th July to Sunday 12th with all results compiled and sent in to the organisers. Newmarket Joggers entered 7 teams. The fastest of them was our Men’s Open team in a marathon time of 3:02:27. Against tough competition, this put them 29th of 35 teams in the category, with Ipswich Harriers overall winners in a time of 2:18:21. We had no entry this year for the Women’s Open competition. Other team results for Newmarket Joggers were: Male Vets (40+) 3:24:08 9th/10, Mixed (1) 3:41:17 107th/168, Mixed (2) 4:09:08 149th/168, Female Vets (35+) (1) 4:14:15 8th/13, Female Vets (2) 4:15:32 9th/13 and Female Supervets (45+) 4:18:30 9th/11, all very respectable times.

Joggers’ fastest 5K times for men and women were: Jamie Rule 19:46 and Angela Brennan 27:15; fastest 7.2K: Marc Drury 30:19 and Lisa Chatterton 39:23; fastest 10K: Jimmy Smith 37:25 and Sarah Boneham 46:29.

On age grade % the top 6 women were: Sarah Boneham 72.86%, Christine Windsor 64.65%, Jan Holmes 62.60%, Ellie Bithell 62.39%, Jenny Osbourn 61.70% and Caroline Mcintosh 60.80%. For the men, top 6 on age grade were: Jimmy Smith 74.08%, Paul Holley 73.95%, Stuart Sowerby 69.54%, Marc Drury 69.21%, Clive Purbrook 67.83% and Malcolm Osbourn 67.70%.

Some of the women’s team at the Ekiden Relays at Woodbridge School 2019. No social distancing here!

Special congratulations to all those Joggers who achieved their best overall age-graded performances of 2020 (of all distances) with their efforts in the Virtual Ekiden Relays. These were, in no particular order: Svetlana Zinchenko, Jim Withers, Jeremy Reader, Lisa Jennings, Jenny Osbourn, Sarah Boneham, Caroline Mcintosh, Jo Bouttell, Clive Purbrook, Angela Brennan, Christine Conway-Jarrett, Stephen Edwards and Bridget Wallwin. Well done for all those excellent performances and a big thank you to all the Joggers who represented our club in the Virtual Ekiden Relays this year.

The coming weekend sees the Saffron Striders Virtual Kevin Henry 5K fixture, the third of 5 planned virtual fixtures, so this will add interest and motivation for club members. The Kevin Henry 5K is also included in Sianie Painter’s NJ Decathlon event. The other suggested Decathlon event this week is the Sockball throw. You need to roll a pair of socks up into a ball and throw it as far as you can, measuring the distance in metres. No weighting of the sockball is allowed…none of those lead-lined socks please! It would be a good idea to throw the ball with the wind in your favour….boomerang socks are not the most helpful. Your Kevin Henry 5K result does not need to be entered in the Decathlon results link; just on Lisa Chatterton’s Kevin Henry results sheet. Sianie painter will add to the Decathlon. Also, remember that the 5 mile Decathlon event (Event No.1) is still open and can be done any time up to 2nd August.