Race Date: 29th September 2019
Round 10 of the Strider World Domination tour took runners to the very well appointed Cusworth Hall, a jewel of Doncaster tourism that is very much more Downtown Abbey than “Down t’pit you go”. The soggy conditions did little to dampen the spirits of the 69 Striders who turned up, though I’m sure there were more than few seeking somewhere dry for a hot meal for two afterwards.
Full current standings as ever are found here.
With champion elect Phil Skelton taking weekend off, the battle in the Premiership was between Joe S-P and the chicken winged one himself, Stu Carrack. Joe took the honours on the day, finishing 7th overall, with Stu behind him in 13th. Chris Guy and Sam Needham also running well on the day:
Looking at our predictor chart, it would still look like the title is all but Phil’s. In fact Joe would have to win the next two races, and beat Phil in both. Not that I’m suggesting that Phil should be coincidently absent from either of the next races of course…
In Division 2, the return to action of Dave Forrest saw him once again soar above the canopy of division rivals as he finished ahead of Daniel Cubitt to reclaim top spot in Division 2. Lucy Broom, despite only having completed 3 races, moved up to the relative safety of mid table after another classy performance.
Dave hasn’t quite clinched the title yet, but can now only be caught by Daniel. It should be pointed out too that one of Dave’s 6 races was pacing at Sheffield Half, so I’m sure he’ll want to get one more under his belt to finish on maximum points. He did, however, secure promotion to the Premiership. Behind Dave, the promotion spots seems to be a case of 5 goes into 3, with Ade Fisher, Malcolm Baggaley, Tim Holt, Michael Slater and the aforementioned Daniel Cubitt all in contention:
It perhaps wasn’t surprising not to see Jordan in action again, having already easily secured the title, leaving the way open for Heather to steal 20 points like diamonds from a Hatton Garden bank vault. Adam McAuley also turned in a tidy run, ,despite his aversion to soggy Strider vests, to pick up 18 points and keep him in touching distance of the final promotion spot:
I may have made a slight mistake in running on Sunday, both in terms of the aggravation of injury, but also in that I secured myself promotion for next year with only Heather and Steve Smith able to better my points total. With Heather all but assured of taking one of the other promotion spots when she completes 6 races, it looks the race for the final one will come down to Steve, Adam and Sergei:
In Division 4 Jimmy Sharmanator led the way to push back up into promotion spots, with Seth moving back into 2nd after picking up a handy 17 points. Despite worries about how he’d cope with a non-diagonal course, Adam Bishop had a strong run to pick up 19 points:
James Boreman is still in the driving seat for the division with points on the board, but if James Staves can make the final two races it could be an interesting run in. The race for promotion also looks like it could go down to the wire with at least 10 runners still in contention. Will points already won win out, or will a dark horse come from deep in the final two races?
Division 5 continues to show the quintessential value of hard work and dedication as Rob Betts’ improvement continues it’s rocket like trajectory, clocking sub 39 and taking away 20 points as just reward. So amazing was his run, it forced me to bury the lead somewhat in that Ben Elmore’s own fantastic run, which scored him 19 points, was enough to take him over the top and see him crowned champion:
Behind Ben then, the race for 2nd is neck and neck between Rob and Ben Sanderson who also both secured promotion this round, leaving just one remaining promotion spot. Currently Pete Brown is in pole position but Maz, Roger and Dominic can still snatch it:
Al Dalton has obviously been following Mick Wall’s house model, converting his endurance bass into a speedy PB to take 20 points and finish a minute clear of Dronfield celebrity Sarah Allcard in Division 6. Scott LIddle, despite coming from afar, didn’t have a wasted journey, with 18 points to keep him company on his trip home. Joe Sinnot scored enough points on the day to take him back to the top of the table, with Charlotte Roper, despite being on couples pacing duties moving back into 2nd:
It currently looks like a 3 way tussle between Joe, Charlotte and Sarah for the title, while Al’s heroics moved him up into the other promotion spot. However, Stephen, Andrew, Scott and Fran can all still nab that 4th spot with some fleet footed finishes.
James Broomhead looks like he’s been in for a Trigger refurb job after smashing out an amazing 40 minutes dead, more than 4 minutes clear then his nearest divisional rival in Division 7. Behind him Wuff pipped Gareth Pert to take 19 points, while Strider extraordinaire Peggy cashed in his good karma of buying coffee for everyone to score 16 points:
With the division crown already sown up, the race for promotion is now where the action is. James’ fine run wasn’t just a great time, but also secured him promotion, leaving two spots up for grabs. It’s a contest to keep an eye on certainly as we see if Wuff and Nicola Ross can overhaul Gareth and Will.
In Division 8 Gillian Allen again showed she’s got a firm grasp on the key to scoring 20 points, i.e. run ridiculously fast, as she was just shy of being 8 minutes clear of Steven Lewis with Mike Heselton also running and taking home 18 points:
Having scored a maximum in every race she’s completed, Gilly will take the title if she can complete one more and score 20 points. Matt Gibson and Phil Dooley, despite not running, secured promotion as other results went there way. The 4th spot looks like it could go any one of 4 out of Loz, Charlotte, Cara and Steven:
With none of the current top 3 in action in Division 9, Mark Warriner went from gamekeeper to poacher as he pocketed 20 points.Despite being marathon imminent, Vikki McAuley showed good speed (though perhaps not as quick as her original Parkrun cup seeding!) to take 19 points, with some close battles elsewhere in the division:
Mark’s late push is well timed, and he’s certainly in contention for a title that could still go any of 4 ways, with plenty to play for in the promotion race too although Helen Jones secured one of the spots despite not running:
In Division 10 Tracey Davies (current front runner for the annual “Davies of the Year” award), profited from Dave Rooney’s conspicuous absence to score yet another 20 points. As per the last update, although Tracey can match Dave’s points total, unless he races again she’s currently behind on the head to head tie breaker. Julia Rose put in a solid run to pic up 19 points, with Gaynor and Richard behind battling it out for 18 and 17 points respectively:
Although Tracey might not be able to win the title unless Dave obliges to a showdown or two, both of them can at least celebrate securing promotion. The other two spots could go any number of ways, but Helen Eberlin is currently the front runner for at least one of them:
David Bailey was again the picture of success, taking home his 4th 20 pointer of the season in Division 11 and maintaining his 100% record. The question remains though will he get 6 races on the board. Sandie Farrow found some timely form to run her fastest 10K since 2016, with Zara Thomas getting 18 points and Jo 17:
The title race could be very tight, depending on whether David can make the next two races. If he can’t, current clubhouse leader Helen Smith would be crowned champion. Although not running herself on Sunday, she did secure promotion as did Sandie and Rachel Rea: