Results for July to December 2023

  • British Masters 5km Road Championships, Battersea Park, 3 December 2023 8-12-23
  • Women's Surrey League Cross Country, Hurst Green, 11 November 2023 15-11-23
  • Men's Surrey League Cross Country, Hurst Green, 11 November 2023 15-11-23
  • VAC 7 mile road walk championships, Enfield, 11 November 2023 15-11-23
  • Jack Fitzgerald Centenary Memorial Walks Tilgate Park, Crawley, 4 November 2023 5-11-23
  • Men's Surrey League Cross Country, Epsom Downs, 14 October 2023 18-10-23
  • Ladies Surrey League Cross Country, Epsom Downs, 14 October 2023  18-10-23
  • East Surrey League Cross Country, Lloyd Park, 7 October 2023 12-10-23
  • Veterans AC 10k track race incorporating Sussex, Surrey, Middx & Herts County Championships Woodcote High School, Purley, 30 September 2023 1-10-23
  • Vitality Westminster Mile, VAC One Mile Championships, 23 September 2023 25-09-23
  • Peckham Rye parkrun, Saturday 16 September 2023 17-09-23
  • VAC 10,000m Championships, Battersea Park, 13 September 2023 20-09-23
  • VAC and London Masters Open Track & Field Championships, Finsbury Park, 9 September 2023 17-09-23
  • England Masters Athletics Association Inter-Area Challenge, Nuneaton, 6 August 2023 3-09-23
  • VAC Battersea Park Grand Prix, Summer Race Series 2023 15-08-23
  • VAC 5 Km Road Race, 1 August 2023, Battersea Park 8-08-23 
  • Veterans AC 5k Road Walk - Battersea Park, 1 August 2023 8-08-23 
  • Octogenarian and Nonagenarian gathering at the Bushy parkrun, 1 July 2023 28-07-23 

British Masters 5km Road Championships, Battersea Park, 3 December 2023

The start of Wave 2, featuring Helen Gaunt (107) (1st W40), Zoe Oldfield (187) (1st W45) and Nikki Sturzaker (247) (1st W50)

Leading pack: Daniel Bradley (36), Chris Loudon, winner (157), Richard McDowell, 2nd (166), Craig Halsey, James Hurrell, 3rd (132)

Simon Coombes 1st M50                                                      
Sarah Winstone, winner

Victoria Carter 2nd W50                                                         
Penny Elliott W80

Peter Giles 1st M75                                                                       
Tom South 1st M45

Photos from Cliff Hide.

Cliff has more photos available for download at this link:  Photos of BMAF 5k Dec 2023. Please give credit to Cliff Hide if any of the photos are shared on social media.

Here are the Full Individual Results.

Here are the Age Group and Team Medallists.

VAC again hosted this national event on our flat, fast, 5km course in Battersea Park. The day was cold and damp but the forecast rain held off. The race attracted a large entry which was split by gender and age groups into two starting waves, two minutes apart. 70 VAC members were amongst the 208 finishers.

VAC members were first and second in the race. Chris Loudon (M35) of Cambridge Harriers was a worthy winner in 15:20 in a close battle with a fast group of contenders throughout the race. Richard McDowell (M40) of Hercules Wimbledon AC fought hard to take the second place in 15:22. Three further VAC members won Gold medals against fierce competition in their age groups: Tom South (M45), Tony Pamphilon (M65) and Peter Giles (M75). Top-ranked times were achieved by Simon Coombes (M50) who placed sixth in the race in 15:52 and Mark Symes (M55) who clocked 16:20. 

The women's competition attracted some top class athletes and five posted times under 18 minutes. The winner was Sarah Winstone (W35) of Southampton AC in 17:04 well clear of second placed Helen Gaunt (W40) of Tonbridge AC in 17:30. VAC’s fastest woman was Nikki Sturzaker (W50) in a magnificent fifth place with a time of 18:03 just ahead of the first W45s, Zoe Oldfield from Loughton AC and VAC's Zoe Doyle in 18:04 and 18:06 respectively. In the older age groups, there were stand-out wins by Monica Williamson (W60) in 19:08, Jill Harrison (W65) in 21:08, Sarah Roberts (W70) in 22:21, Angela Copson (W75) in 23:52 and Penny Elliott (W80) in 28:36. Monica's time achieved the highest age grading in the event.

Women's Surrey League Cross Country, Hurst Green, 11 November 2023

VAC's Women's Team

Lucy Woolhouse (405)                                                            
Lisa Thomas

Sarah Allen                                                                              
Ros Tabor

Vera Blei                                                                                   
Sarah Knox

Photos from Helen Davies

The women’s combined Divisions 2 and 3 race was the last of the day and the muddy course, described in the report of the men’s Surrey League match, was by then well and truly churned up. The women’s 6km course missed out some of the men’s mud but it was still very tricky underfoot as testified by several who had taken tumbles or whose shoes had been claimed by the bog. 

A record turnout of 11 demonstrated that VAC’s women’s team is going from strength to strength in participation and performance in the second season back in the league. Lucy Woolhouse was again the first finisher with a splendid 34th place in the combined race of 296 finishers, and 26th in Division 2. Her time of 27:36 was convincingly the best in the W60 age group contest. The scoring “A” team was completed by Lisa Thomas, Pippa Major, Brigid Hibberd and Anna Garnier, and placed a good seventh “A” team on the day. Having a full “B” team was a boost and was rewarded by a sixth  place out of the Division’s 12 “B” teams. 

The full results are on the Surrey League website. 

VAC Placings, Division Two, Hurst Green, 11 Nov 2023
Pos. Time Name Age Group
26 27:36 Lucy Woolhouse W60
41 28:41 Lisa Thomas W55
53 29:46 Pippa Major W55
54 30:00 Brigid Hibberd W55
59 30:21 Anna Garnier W65
96 33:16 Gina Coulson W65
101 33:43 Sarah Knox W50
108 35:00 Vera Blei W50
109 35:04 Viv Mitchell W60
112 35:32 Ros Tabor W70
114 35:45 Sarah Allen W55
146 finishers in Div 2 (296 in combined race with Div 3)
Division Two "A" Team Results at Hurst Green
1 Fulham RC 47
2 Woking 59
3 DMV 94
4 West 4 Harriers 132
5 Croydon Harriers 159
6 London City Runners 219
7 VAC 233
8 Holland Sports 240
9 Kingston & Poly. 307
10 Striders of Croydon 324
Plus a further 5 "A" teams

Men's Surrey League Cross Country, Hurst Green, 11 November 2023

VAC's Men's Team

Richard Batchelor                                                                     
Peter Lee

Ebe Prill                                                                                    
Gary Budinger (1022), Dave West

Charles Hampden-Smith (1065)                                          
Chris Lee

Photos from Helen Davies

A magnificent turnout of 22 men represented VAC in the second match of the season. Holland Sports AC hosted the fixture and laid out a new 8km course from their headquarters at Hurst Green, near Oxted. Clubs had been warned to expect mud and having had several weeks of heavy rain before the event, there was certainly plenty of it. However, on the day, bright sunshine and cool air presented ideal weather conditions. 

The race began with a sprint round a waterlogged playing field before negotiating the first of two bridges and a narrow path leading to open fields beyond. After a long upward slope, the route dropped to the first sticky section where trail shoes and cross country spikes came into their own. And so it went on, with field after field alternating between being slightly muddy through to downright bogs, interspersed by a couple of wet wooded sections. After two gruelling laps, a short sprint over the bridge led to the finish line. 

Richard Batchelor again led the team, finishing 26th out of the 351 finishers in the combined Divisions 3 and 4 race, and eighth position in Division 4. He was followed by Peter Lee and Simon Moore in positions 23 and 29. Next were Malcolm Davies, Richard Evans, Ian Barnett and Bruce McLaren, all in the top 50. Charles Hampden-Smith, Stewart Bond and Ebe Prill (with a shoe in his hand) completed VAC’s scoring “A” team of ten. VAC’s remaining runners pushed for every place to score for the “B” team. 

Newcomers Peter Lee, Simon Moore, Richard Evans, Charles Hampden-Smith, Stewart Bond and Petros Hahladakis were welcomed. They made great contributions. 

The “A” team were an excellent third in the Division 4 match, maintaining VAC’s push for promotion to Division 3. VAC’s “B” team were rewarded by coming first in their competition. In the age group contests, VAC took the top four places in the M60 rankings.  

The full results are on the Surrey League website.


VAC Placings, Division Four, Hurst Green
Pos. Time Name Age Group
8 31:48 Richard Batchelor M45
23 34:25 Peter Lee M55
29 35:08 Simon Moore M55
33 35:34 Malcolm Davies M55
40 36:07 Richard Evans M60
46 36:56 Ian Barnett M60
49 37:03 Bruce McLaren M55
58 37:54 Charles Hampden-Smith M60
61 38:21 Stewart Bond M50
80 40:00 Ebe Prill M60
94 41:03 Chris Lee M60
100 41:24 John Barron M65
107 41:44 Glen Morgan M60
115 42:21 Peter Giles M75
124 43:30 Mike Mann M75
128 44:05 Clive Walker M65
147 46:48 Gary Budinger M60
150 46:58 Dave West M65
151 47:12 Petros Hahladakis M45
159 49:29 Andy Mitchelson M55
161 50:07 Andy Murray M70
167 52:06 Dan Maskell M75
175 finishers (351 in combined race)
Division Four Team Results at Hurst Green
1 Sutton Striders 182
2 Clapham Pioneers 349
3 VAC 416
4 Collingwood 472
5 Sutton Runners 540
6 Lingfield Running Club 595
7 Chessington Unity RC 759
8 British Airways 787.5
9 Horley Harriers 801
10 Dulwich Park Runners 883
11 Windrush Tri Club 950
12 Epsom Oddballs 1002.5
13 Runnymede 1040
14 Waverley AC 1093

VAC 7 mile road walk championships, Enfield, 11 November 2023, King George V Playing Fields, Enfield
The event was held in conjunction with Enfield & Haringey AC’s 7 Mile Open race, now in its 96th edition, in idyllic conditions, and now takes the name of Bernie Hercock, who was a long-time VAC member and prolific racer.
There were 25 in total on the start line, similar to 2022.
The VAC contingent was strongly led home by Ian Richards (Steyning AC) and Penelope Cummings (HHH) led for the ladies (4th lady and 4th overall).
VAC are grateful to the Enfield League organiser, Ron Wallwork, for allowing VAC to incorporate their championships within the Enfield Open 7.
Square brackets denote position in race:
1 John Arthur [11] (Ilford AC) 83.24
1 Stuart Bennett [7] (Ilford AC) 75.26
1 Ian Richards (Steyning AC) 70.08
1 Penelope Cummings [4] (HHH) 71.09
1 Maureen Noel [5] (Belgrave H) 73.28
2 Fiona Bishop [9] (EHAC) 81.14
In addition there were partial completions from:
W55 Sian Baum (HHH) 59.37 5 miles
W60 Shaheda Arthur (Ilford AC) 88.30 5 miles
M70 David Hoben (Surrey WC) 74.52 6 miles
M75 Christopher Flint (Surrey WC) 75.06 6 miles

Jack Fitzgerald Centenary Memorial Walks Tilgate Park, Crawley, 4 November 2023

Veterans AC approx. 3 miles and 6 miles road race
Permit No: RWA23065-1 Category B
1 Nicholas Fleeman M65 Winchester and District AC 38:47
9.52k mixed
1 Melanie Peddle W55 Loughton AC 59:22
2 Trevor Jones M65 Steyning AC 61:01
3 Brian Kirkdale M65 Hastings Runners 63:57
4 John Borgars M75 Loughton AC 66:23
5 Fiona Bishop W60 Woking AC 67:54
6 Paul Gaston M75 Surrey Walking Club 70:31
7 Judith Carder W65 Brighton & Hove AC 75:59
8= Christopher Flint M75 Surrey Walking Club 76:24
8= Stephen Cartwright M65 Gt Bentley RC 76:24

Veterans AC were pleased to host the eighth running of this event on a lakeside course once used as the test bed for Britain's water speed record round popular beauty spot Campbell's lake, now in Jack Fitzgerald’s centenary year.

The rain which endured until the event had just finished could only be described as heavy and persistent or just persistent.

In the headline race over 9.52 km VAC were pleased to welcome back Trevor Jones from Steyning AC on his second win for the men at this event; the overall and ladies’ winner was Melanie Peddle from Loughton AC, who is having a very successful year. 

VAC are always grateful for our judges and team of officials, especially in these difficult weather conditions, in particular Ron Penfold who is a local resident had been monitoring the state of the course up to the day before; in the end the usual loop was roughly halved and became out and back due to the flooded patches on the return half.

The race was held to raise funds for Blind Veterans UK, as a tribute to RAF fighter pilot Jack Fitzgerald.

Judges: Peter Cassidy, John Hall
Starter: Peter Hannell
Time keeping/lap recording: Peter Selby, Jeremy Carmichael, David Hoben
Lead cyclist + marshal: Eric Parker
Signage: Ron Penfold
Hospitality: Tilgate Forest Golf Centre
From an original idea by Walter Hill, SCVAC

Men's Surrey League Cross Country, Epsom Downs, 14 October 2023

Richard Batchelor (1020)                                                        
Mike Webber

Gary Ironmonger (1036)                                                           
Gary Budinger

Ben Revill                                                                                  
Ian Barnett

John Carter                                                                                
Martin Evans

Photos from Cliff Hide. Cliff has more photos and is happy to supply J-Peg copies to competitors.
Email him at

A great turnout of 19 VAC men contested the combined Division 3 and 4 race at Epsom Downs. On arrival, most were drenched by a heavy shower but by the time the race started, it was sunny. Despite the rain, the 8km, two-lap, course past the iconic grandstand, was firm underfoot.

Richard Batchelor (M45) was VAC's first finisher in a hard fight for 11th place. Mike Webber (M55) was next, making a great contribution in 19th place, followed by Vic Maughn who topped the Division's M60 results' listing. Clive Rolfe, Ian Barnett, Gary Ironmonger, Malcolm Davies, Tony Harran, Ben Revill and John Foss completed the scoring "A" team which finished in a fantastic second place out of the 14 clubs in Division 4. The "B" team of the next nine runners fought for every place and matched the A team by coming second in the B team competition.

Newcomers, Mike Webber, Ian Barnett, Ben Revill and John Foss were welcomed. Their fine performances certainly bolstered VAC's teams' standings.

The full results are on the Surrey League website

VAC Placings, Division Four, Epsom Downs
Pos. Time Name Age Group
11 31:26 Richard Batchelor M45
19 32:38 Mike Webber M55
33 34:36 Vic Maughn M60
36 34:44 Clive Rolfe M45
38 35:19 Ian Barnett M60
39 35:21 Gary Ironmonger M60
45 36:01 Malcolm Davies M55
64 38:18 Tony Harran M60
72 38:57 Ben Revill M50
74 39:02 John Foss M65
92 40:37 John Barron M65
98 41:09 Chris Lee M60
113 43:59 Martin Evans M70
128 47:52 David Hinds M70
133 48:14 Andy Mitchelson M55
137 48:44 Gary Budinger M60
141 50:42 Dan Maskell M75
145 53:31 John Carter M75
148 56:02 Ian Strong M60
150 finishers (323 in combined race)
Division Four Team Results at Epsom Downs
1 Sutton Striders 212
2 VAC 410
3 Sutton Runners 414
4 Chessington Unity RC 595
5 British Airways 613
6 Lingfield Running Club 693
7 Dulwich Park Runners 719
8 Horley Harriers 729
9 Runnymede 756
10 Collingwood 854
11 Epsom Oddballs 890
12 Clapham Pioneers 903
13 Waverley AC 948
14 Windrush Tri Club 1134


Ladies Surrey League Cross Country, Epsom Downs, 14 October 2023

VAC Team:  Sarah, Anna, Catherine, Lucy, Gina, Patricia, Lisa, Brigid, Lesley

Lucy Woolhouse                                                                      
Lesley Bowcott

Lisa Thomas                                                                            
Gina Coulson

Patricia Thomas                                                                       
Brigid Hibberd

Photos from Cliff Hide. Cliff has more photos and is happy to supply J-Peg copies to competitors.
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VAC's women's team competed strongly in the combined race for Divisions 2 and 3 at Epsom Downs in sunny, but cold, conditions. The two-lap, 6km, course was a mixture of rough gravel, dirt tracks and grassland, with a steady climb up the Down and a fast descent to Tattenham Corner.

Lucy Woolhouse was the first finisher from VAC's team of nine in 25th position in Division 2 and first W60 in the combined race. Next was Lisa Thomas (W55) in 43rd position followed by Brigid Hibbert (W55) in 62nd place. Anna Garnier (W65) and Gina Coulson (W65) completed the scoring "A" team which finished a commendable 8th out of 15 "A" teams. The next four finishers, Patricia Thomas, Sarah Allen, Catherine Porter and Lesley Bowcott scored for the "B" team which also finished eighth. A warm welcome was given to new VAC members, Brigid and Catherine. Also running for the first time in VAC's Surrey League team were Lisa, Gina, Patricia and Lesley who all made great contributions.

The full results are on the Surrey League website

VAC Placings, Division Two, Epsom Downs, 14 Oct 2023
Pos. Time Name Age Group
25 28:46 Lucy Woolhouse W60
43 30:15 Lisa Thomas W55
62 31:27 Brigid Hibberd W55
71 32:20 Anna Garnier W65
89 33:37 Gina Coulson W65
98 34:08 Patricia Thomas W55
111 36:54 Sarah Allen W60
113 38:16 Catherine Porter W55
141 48:09 Lesley Bowcott W75
142 finishers in Div 2 (283 in combined race with Div 3)
Division Two "A" Team Results at Epsom Downs
1 Ful-on Tri 45
2 Woking 75
3 DMV 83
4 West 4 Harriers 122
5 Croydon Harriers 138
6 London City Runners 163
7 Holland Sports 269
8 VAC 290
9 Ealing 304
10 Kingston & Poly. 309
Plus a further 5 "A" teams

East Surrey League Cross Country, Lloyd Park, 7 October 2023

VAC's team (except for Alex Baird who missed the photo)

Alex Baird                                                                                 
Jani Kraner

Hugh Balfour                                                                           
John Foley

Photos from Martin Berry

Here are the Results of the East Surrey League race, 7 October 2023.

Hot sunny weather and dry ground made an unseasonal start to VAC's cross country campaign but the team of thirteen tackled Lloyd Park's traditional course with enthusiasm and determination in a very competitive first match of the East Surrey League.

Jani Kraner (M40) led the team home with a splendid second place finish. Also in the top ten were Mark Tennyson (M55), in eighth place, followed by John Foley (M55) in ninth, just four seconds behind. VAC's fourth scorer was Terry Booth (M55) whose 17th position cemented VAC's excellent second place in the men's team competition.

VAC's Alex Baird (W40) was third in the women's competition, followed by Victoria Carter (W50) in seventh place.

VAC scored well in the age groups. Jani Kraner was first M40-49, Mark Tennyson first M50-59 and Hugh Balfour first M60+.

Veterans AC 10k track race incorporating Sussex, Surrey, Middx & Herts County Championships Woodcote High School, Purley, 30 September 2023

The annual VAC and Counties championships took place in good racing conditions on a picture-perfect autumn afternoon, with cloud cover and a modest breeze.

With the second rail strike in two years on this race date and a number of regulars racing in Holland this was never going to be a big field, however ten on the line faced the starter’s pistol.

The men’s race was won by Blackheath’s junior Jonny Ellerton with good style, in an excellent time slightly outside his personal best time at Coventry track this year. EHAC’s entry second male Dave Walsh also did a good time just outside his PB, and beat the rail strike by an interesting route including a local park run and cycling. The ladies’ race, Surrey County and VAC championship, was won by Penelope Cummings in a time just outside the hour, with Sian Baum from Herne Hill Harriers taking second place in the same championships in her first attempt at this distance. Both ladies were commended for their style.

Flying the flag for Sussex, Paul Gaston (SWC) took the County honours, and Ron Penfold (Steyning AC) won the men’s VAC championships.

VAC are indebted as always to the team of officials and judges for this event to take place, who appear below.

Veterans AC 10k track race walk incorporating Sussex, Surrey, Middx & Herts County Championships
Woodcote High School, Purley, 30 September 2023
Permit No: RWA23047-1  Category A

1 Penelope Cummings W45 AFD/VAC [1] 1:00:44.8 Surrey
2 Sian Baum W55 Herne Hill Harriers/VAC [2] 1:13:59.6 Surrey
1 Jonathan Ellerton U20M Blackheath & Bromley Harriers 57:19.1 N/A
2 David Walsh M60 Enfield & Haringey AC 1:02:47.8 N/A
3 Matthew Ellerton M50 Blackheath & Bromley Harriers 1:08:21.6 N/A
4 Paul Gaston M75 Surrey Walking Club 1:12:47.4 Sussex
5 Ronald Penfold M80 Steyning AC/VAC [1] 1:13:51.0 Sussex
John Borgars M75 Herts Phoenix DQ
Championship results in square brackets
County championships:
P Cummings, S Baum
P Gaston, R Penfold
Veterans AC 10k Open track race walk
Permit No: RWA23047-1 Category B
1 Graeme Heaton M60 Heathfield RR 1:12:42.1
Peter Hannell M80 Surrey Walking Club/VAC DNF

Judge: Shaun Lightman 
Starter: Steve Knight 
Time keeping: David Harris/Ian Statter/Carl Lawton 
Lap recording: Nolan Simmons, George Collins, David Hoben 
Hospitality: Woodcote High School 
Track equipment: South London Harriers

Vitality Westminster Mile, VAC One Mile Championships, 23 September 2023

Some of VAC's runners: Maggie, Ron, Andrew, Chiara, Lucy, Hugh, Pam

Chris Loudon wins Wave One

Peter Kennedy (612), Andy Cornish (672)                                            
Maggie Statham-Berry, 1st W70

Nineteen VAC members enjoyed the Westminster Mile's traffic-free course along the Mall, past Horse Guards parade ground and back along Birdcage Walk to the iconic finish outside Buckingham Palace.

VAC's Chris Loudon (M35) won Wave One in style, breaking the tape in a fantastic 4:26 chip time. Paul Howard was the second VAC finisher, clocking 4:43 as the first M40 in the race. Gina Galbraith was VAC's first woman in 5:27, placing second in the combined times for Waves 1 and 2, and first W45. VAC members dominated the age groups. Other age group firsts were achieved by Lucy Woolhouse (W60), Peter Hall (M65), Avril Riddell (W65), Peter Kennedy (M70), Maggie Statham-Berry (W70) and Bill O'Connor (M75). Lucy's time of 6:05 translated to a magnificent age-grading of 95.22%. Pamela Whitter and Avril Riddell also achieved over 90% with a further five members above 85%.

Results of the VAC One Mile Championship, Westminster Mile, 23 September 2023
Pos. First Name Last Name Age Grp Result Age Grade VAC Medal
1 Chris Loudon M35 4:26 87.24 Gold
2 Paul Howard M40 4:43 85.13 Gold
3 Gina Galbraith W45 5:27 88.06 Gold
4 Andy Bowen M55 5:35 81.19 Gold
5 Tim Grose M55 5:37 79.35 Silver
6 Andrew Cornish M55 5:50 77.05 Bronze
6 Peter Hall M65 5:50 82.69 Gold
8 Dean Saliba M40 5:57 68.00 Silver
9 Peter Kennedy M70 6:04 85.72 Gold
10 Lucy Woolhouse W60 6:05 95.22 Gold
11 Tom Cheetham M55 6:17 70.93
12 Pamela Whitter W60 6:20 94.25 Silver
13 Jerry Lockspeiser M70 6:51 74.00 Silver
14 Avril Riddell W65 7:15 90.61 Gold
15 Chiara Cristoni W50 7:16 68.57 Gold
16 Ronald Vialls M70 7:37 67.37 Bronze
17 Maggie Statham-Berry W70 7:49 85.48 Gold
18 Bill O'Connor M75 10:01 57.65 Gold
19 Patrick Reynolds M70 13:34 38.89

Peckham Rye parkrun, Saturday 16 September 2023

Avril, Anna, Rachel, Lucy, Andy M, Andy B, Peter, Nikki, Ade, Ros, Martin

Andy Bond, first place                                                             
Nikki Sturzaker, first woman

Photos from Cliff Hide.

15 VAC members arrived at Peckham Rye Park for the latest parkrun meet-up. It was a lovely morning – sunny and still, but not too hot for running. The course is a twisty three-lapper with a slight uphill at the end of each lap. The run was quite congested at the start and the paths are narrow and uneven, but we all settled down and enjoyed ourselves. Cliff Hide was present to encourage us and take photos.

Results for VAC were impressive. We had the first finisher for men and women (Andy Bond and Nikki Sturzaker). The first seven on age grading were all VAC members. Andy Bond, Ade, Nikki, Ros, Lucy, Peter, and Avril were all first in their age groups.

Pos'n Name Club Cat. pos'n Time Age Grading %
1 Andy Bond Dulwich Runners 1st M 50 16:24 89.94
3 Ade Russell Dulwich Runners 1st M 45 17:04 83.69
9 Nikki Sturzaker Herne Hill Harriers 1st W50 18:42 89.66
23 Martin Daoud Ealing, Southall & Midd 2nd M 60 19:58 81.05
37 Rachel Berry West 4 Harriers 2nd W 50 20:57 80.99
38 Peter Hall West 4 Harriers 1st M 65 20:58 79.97
45 Lucy Woolhouse VAC 1st W 60 21:22 90.80
102 Graham Laylee Dulwich Runners 2nd M65 23:52 70.95
150 Helen Corbishley VAC 2nd W 45 25:31 63.49
176 Avril Riddell Serpentine 1st W 65 26:37 82.28
177 Anna Garnier Thames Hare & Hounds 2nd W 65 26:38 82.23
184 Ros Tabor Dulwich Runners 1st W 70 26:50 88.76
213 Andy Murray Dulwich Runners 2nd M 70 27:52 63.28
401 Dennis Williams Hercules Wimbledon 3rd M 75 40:19 48.78

VAC 10,000m Championships, Battersea Park, 13 September 2023

Andy Bond, VAC Champion                                                  
Madeleine Armstrong-Plieth, VAC Champion

Lara Bromilow, women's winner                                             
Andy Bond (8), Duncan Woolmer (59) 2nd place

Andrew Aitken (2), Jani Kraner (32)                                      
Ruben Carvajal, winner Race 2

Martin Daoud (17), Peter Hall (27),  Helen Pool                 
Roger Beardsworth (5), Steve Corfield

Pete Woodward, winner Race 1                                             
Edward Smyth, Clare Norris, Race 1

Photos from Cliff Hide. Cliff has more photos and is happy to supply J-Peg copies to competitors.
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Here are the results of the individual 10,000m races

Here are the  combined results including medallists

The three seeded races took place in settled weather, warm and calm.

Andy Bond (M50) retained his VAC men’s 10,000m champion’s title, followed throughout by the 2021 winner, Duncan Woolmer (M40) who gradually lost ground. Andy’s time of 33:11.82 set a new M50 Championship Best Performance, just a fraction of a second ahead of Simon Baines’s previous record of 33:12.22 set in 2022. The first woman was Lara Bromilow of EMAC in a fantastic time of 36:23.31, an all-comers’ record for W40. Madeleine Armstrong-Plieth was the first VAC woman and was awarded the Champion’s trophy which was a fitting reward for her first track 10k.

Ruben Carvajal (M40) from Queen’s Park Harriers won the second race in 38:08.10, pursued by Jeremy Garner (M45) in 38:16.89, in turn chased by Steve Corfield who pulled ahead of fellow-M60, Roger Beardsworth, to claim M60 Gold.

In the first race, Pete Woodward (M40) of Crowborough Runners was dominant and won in a time of 37:31.82. Pete had been on the start list for the second (faster) race, but travel constraints were taken into account, and he joined the earlier race instead. Clare Norris (W45) led the main field of runners, finishing in 43:03.01, having pulled away from fellow Dulwich Runner, Edward Smyth.

Gold medals for men’s age-group firsts were won by Chris Jones (M35), Duncan Woolmer (M40), Andrew Aitken (M45), Andy Bond (M50), Jonathan Ratcliffe (M55), Steve Corfield (M60), Peter Hall (M65), Jerry Lockspeiser (M70) and Eddie Torpe (M75). For the women, the Golds were awarded to Sara Ellen (W35), Lara Bromilow (W40), Loise Faherty (W45), Vera Blei (W50) and Caroline Helder (W60).

VAC and London Masters Open Track & Field Championships, Finsbury Park, 9 September 2023

800m: (left to right) Mohsin Javed (M35 Gold), Edmund Adigwe, Scott Brewer, Kojo Kyereme (race winner, M45 Gold), John Whittaker
(M40 Gold), Jonathan Whittaker, Richard Macaulay

1500m: (left to right) Avril Riddell, Lucy Woolhouse, Anna Critchlow,
Samantha Lamb (race winner), Victoria Carter, Lucie Mauger, Sara Ellen

Mensah Elliott, 100m M45 Gold                                            
Michelle Watson (119), Krystle Balogun

Bilen Ahmet, W35 Gold                                                            Sue Yeomans, W70 Gold

Suzanne Harding, W45 Gold                                                 
Sharon Hutchings, W50 Gold

Paul Negri, M65 800m                                                           
Allan Long (M80) leads Gerry Lustig (M75)

Photos from Cliff Hide. Cliff has more photos and is happy to supply J-Peg copies to competitors.
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Here are the results on Power of Ten of the VAC/London Masters T&F Championships, 9 September: Results (

Here are the results for each event by age group category

VAC's Track and Field championships took place during a heatwave at London's Finsbury Park athletics track. In a new venture, VAC expanded the club championship to include an open London Masters tournament. The event was successful and attracted over 150 entries, with half of these from non-members, many experiencing their first Masters competition in age groups.

Despite the heat, there were fine performances, with many athletes competing in several events. VAC's multi-eventer, Bilen Ahmet, completed 12 events!. London Marathon ever-present, Bill O'Connor, completed seven events, including all five track distances. 

VAC was grateful for the support of the London Heathside club at its home track and particularly for the vision and organisation provided by Adrian Essex and Adrian Day of Heathside and Peter Kennedy of VAC. Other local clubs also rallied round and provided many officials. Thanks go to all the officials and helpers who served for many hours in the high temperature to ensure a successful meeting, which we plan to repeat and build on next year.

England Masters Athletics Association Inter-Area Challenge, Nuneaton, 6 August 2023

First place for VAC's M60 4 x 100m Relay team: Tim Carter, David Hinds, Brian Steene, Mike Vassiliou

Peter Kennedy (87), 2nd 800m                                              
Fiona Bishop, 2K Walk

Photo of the M60 Relay Team from Brian Steene. Other photos from Andy Murray.

Here are the Results of VAC's Team Members.

The date of the annual fixture was later than usual and slipped into the holiday period. VAC had a numerically weakened team but there were great efforts from those who made the trip to Nuneaton's Pingles Stadium where there was a pleasant track and a well-officiated meeting.

Particular highlights were the double firsts for Gavin Stephens (M35 200m and 400m) and Mike Vassiliou (M60 200m and 400m) plus first places for Chris Taplin (M50 400m), Tim Carter (M70 Long Jump) and the M60 relay team. There were also six splendid second places and eight third places. Many team members did more than one event, with multi-eventer, Bilen Ahmet, scoring well in eight events. Fiona Bishop did five events and Natalie Mann did four.

VAC Battersea Park Grand Prix, Summer Race Series 2023

Neil Danby, Grand Prix winner                                              
Nikki Sturzaker, 2nd place

Richard Tomlinson, 3rd place                                               
Joseph Gonzalez Armas, 4th place

Photo of Neil Danby from Andrew Cornish. Other photos from Cliff Hide.

Thirty VAC members qualified for the 2023 Grand Prix. To be eligible, members needed to register times in at least three of VAC's four 5km/5 mile road races in the 2023 series in Battersea Park. Each year, the person with the highest average of his or her three best age-graded performances is awarded the Snow Cup, a beautiful trophy which dates to 1950.

Congratulations to Neil Danby (M55) the worthy winner of the 2023 competition with an outstanding average age grading of 93.19%. In each of his three races, Neil set new M55 records for the Battersea Park courses. In April’s 5k race, his time of 16:29 beat his own course record of 16:33 set in 2021. He went even better in June’s race by posting 16:25 to win VAC’s 5K championship and improve his M55 record by four seconds. In May’s 5 Mile championship race, he won M55 Gold against top opposition and set a new course record of 27:35.

Nikki Sturzaker (W50) was second in the Grand Prix with an average of 89.64%. Nikki set new W45 course records in April’s 5k and May’s 5 Mile races, and then, having turned 50, set a W50 5k record of 18:04 in August’s race which was actually faster than her W45 record (18:16). Richard Tomlinson (M55) was third in the series with an average of 88.53%, closely followed by Joseph Gonzalez-Armas (M50) with 88.02% and Simon Shaw (M50) with 87.91%.

Six members were ever-presents, contesting all four races. They were Andrew Cornish, Martin Daoud, Jay Hadfield, Caroline Helder, Nikki Sturzaker and Tony Tuohy. Thanks go to all the VAC members and open runners who competed in the races over the summer. The series resumes in April 2024.

League Table, Battersea Park Road Race Grand Prix 2023
Pos. VAC Member's Name Age-graded %* Age Grp. Club
Avg. best 3 races
1 Neil Danby 93.19 M55 Holland Sports
2 Nikki Sturzaker 89.64 W50 Herne Hill Harriers
3 Richard Tomlinson 88.53 M55 Medway & Maidstone
4 Joseph Gonzalez-Armas 88.02 M50 Herne Hill Harriers
5 Simon Shaw 87.91 M50 Ealing Southall Middlesex
6 Tony Tuohy 87.25 M60 Dulwich Runners
7 Ged Ruffle 87.11 M70 Hart
8 Terry Booth 87.03 M55 Guildford & Godalming
9 Steve Roberts 85.6 M55 Handy Cross
10 Robin Jones 84.13 M50 Herne Hill Harriers
11 Avril Riddell 83.77 W65 Serpentine
12 Peter Hall 82.09 M65 West 4
13 Tim Grose 81.76 M55 Walton
14 Caroline Helder 81.01 W60 Wimbledon Windmilers
15 Martin Daoud 80.95 M60 Ealing Southall Middlesex
16 Mike Mann 79.87 M75 Dulwich Runners
17 John Foss 79.85 M60 South London Harriers
18 Robert Nagorski 79.5 M60 Herne Hill Harriers
19 Edward Thorpe 78.67 M75 Reading RR
20 Sam Rahman 78.5 M40 Ilford
21 Gavin Englefield 77.5 M45 South London Harriers
22 Carol Jones 76.86 W65 Ealing Southall Middlesex
23 Tim Sharp 76.39 M45 Kent
24 Clare Norris 76.28 W45 Dulwich Runners
25 Andrew Cornish 75.62 M55 Holland Sports
26 Tom Cheetham 75.16 M55 Hercules Wimbledon
27 Karen Samuel 70.04 W60 Kent
28 Tom Morris 69.15 M65 Hercules Wimbledon
29 Jay Hadfield 65.98 W50 Fleet & Crookham
30 Peter Torre 57.35 M80 VAC
* Age grading based on actual age, using World Masters Athletics Road age-grading calculator 2020.

VAC 5 Km Road Race, 1 August 2023 , Battersea Park

Ged Ruffle (1st M70), John Appleton, Peter Hall (1st M65)

Duncan Woolmer, race winner                                              
Melissah Gibson, women's winner

Lynn Wilson, 1st W65                                                             
Karen Samuel

Peter Giles, 1st M75                                                               
Tony Tuohy

Photos from Cliff Hide. Cliff has more photos and is happy to supply J-Peg copies to competitors.
Email him at

Here are the  Results of the 5K Road Race , including the category positions (PDF file).

August’s race in VAC’s summer series is usually depleted by hot weather and holiday absences. This was not the case this year when 101 runners completed the 5k race in ideal cool conditions. VAC’s Duncan Woolmer won the race in an excellent 16:05 which set a new M40 course record for a VAC member, 14 seconds inside Steve Surridge’s previous record of 16:19 set 20 years ago in July 2003. Tom Hollis (M35) of Lonely Goat Running Club piled on the pressure to finish second in 16:08, closely followed by Chris Mullin (M45) in 16:09. The record-breaking continued when Mark Cursons set a time of 17:14 which convincingly bettered David Ogden’s M60 record of 17:39 set in 2021. Other age group winners were David Williams (M50), Richard Tomlinson (M55), Peter Hall (M65), Ged Ruffle (M70), Peter Giles (M75) and Michael Johnson (M80).

Melissah Gibson, the women’s winner of April’s race, dominated the field of 25 women to cross the line in 17:35 which improved her own W35 all-comers record of 18:10. Next was Nikki Sturzaker, new to the W50 age group, who worked hard to hold off Carole Coulon (W45). Nikki’s time of 18:04 wiped over 40 seconds off Anna Critchlow’s W50 record of 18:45 set in 2021. The fourth woman was Maria Heslop of Tonbridge AC who set a phenomenal W55 all-comers’ record of 18:22, well inside the record of 19:55 for a VAC member held by Lisa Thomas since 2021. Another splendid record was set by Penny Elliott whose time of 28:47 improved on her own W80 record of 29:02 set in June. Penny tops RunBritain’s W80 5k national rankings for 2023. Other age group winners were Lucy Woolhouse (W60), Lynn Wilson (W65) and Annie Ross (W70).

Veterans AC 5k Road Walk - Battersea Park, 1 August 2023

Ian Richards (M75)                                                                   
Melanie Peddle, 1st woman

Photos from Cliff Hide. Cliff has more photos and is happy to supply J-Peg copies to competitors.
Email him at

The last of the regular Battersea Park races had an average field this time in indifferent humid weather, luckily the rain held off for the duration.

Coming in as men’s winner was Dave Annetts from N Herts RR in a fast time just outside his personal best, with Ian Richards from Steyning AC not far behind.

The ladies’ winner for the third time running was Melanie Peddle from Loughton AC, in her usual highly respectable time.

Veterans AC were pleased to welcome two guests from Hong Kong, Min Yee Michelle Lee and For Yau Fung who had chosen the race while holidaying in the UK.

In addition the other guests were Paul Hawkins from Stratford upon Avon AC, and promising junior athlete Trejan Checheku-Boamah from Blackheath & Bromley AC who completed in a good time; going under 30 minutes for this distance is now a realistic target for him. 

Veterans AC 5k Road Walk - Battersea Park, 1 August 2023
Fixture IV
RWA Permit No 23025-4
Place Name Age Group Club Time
1 David Annetts M55 N Herts Road Runners/Veterans AC 23:32
2 Ian Richards M75 Steyning AC/Veterans AC 27:43
3 Melanie Peddle W50 Loughton AC/EMAC 28:11
4 Trejan Checheku-Boamah U15B Blackheath & Bromley AC 30:18
5 Penelope Cummings W45 Herne Hill Harriers/Veterans AC 30:20
6 Maureen Noel W55 Belgrave Harriers/Veterans AC 32:24
7 Fiona Bishop W60 Woking AC/Veterans AC 34:26
8 Min Yee Michelle Lee W60 SSH RWA (Hong Kong) 36:15
9 Paul Hawkins M65 Stratford-upon-Avon AC/MMAC 36:20
10 David Hoben M70 SyWC/Veterans AC 38:07
11 Christopher Flint M75 SyWC/Veterans AC 39:27
12 For Yau Fung M65 SSH RWA 47:23
Stuart Bennett M60 Ilford AC/Veterans AC DNS
Peter Hannell M80 SyWC/Veterans AC DNS
Lesley Morris  W60 Ilford AC/Veterans AC DNS
Tessa Killingbeck W40 City of Norwich AC DNS
Artur Olszewski M40 Veterans AC DNS

Race Director and Starter: Ben Noad
Clerk of Course: Dennis Williams
UKA Adjudicator: Malcolm French
Timekeepers: David Harris, Don Turner
Recorders: Helen Davies, Ian Isherwood, Carl Lawton, Maggie Statham-Berry, Ros Tabor
Walk Judge: Shaun Lightman
Registration: David Hoben, Maggie Statham-Berry, Ros Tabor
Marshals: Joe Aspinall, Martin Berry, Stephanie Burchill, Tony Harran, Andy Murray, Dennis Williams
Results: Ben Noad
Photography: Cliff Hide
First Aid: Bespoke Medics Ltd

Octogenarian and Nonagenarian gathering at the Bushy parkrun, 1 July 2023

Some of the over 80s at Bushy parkrun, featuring Joe Aspinall in the VAC vest

Here are the results for the over 80s in each age group.

VAC members led the way at the sixth annual gathering of the over 80s at the Bushy parkrun. Eighty-five octo- and nonagenarians came together to set an unofficial record amongst the 1453 finishers at the 937th parkrun at Bushy Park, the home of parkrun. Never have so many over 80s started together. VAC member, Richard Pitcairn-Knowles (M90) is one of the founders of the annual meeting which includes prosecco and cupcakes as rewards. He was one of four over 90s to complete the course. There were 64 finishers in the 80-84 age group and 17 in the 85-89 age group. 

VAC’s Michael Johnson was the fastest of all the over 80s with an impressive time of 25:54 and an age-grading of 83.20%. The fastest of the women was VAC’s Penny Elliott who achieved the best age grading of the entire field with a magnificent 89.88%. Her time of 29:39 was only nine seconds short of the all-time best for the W80 age group at Bushy Park. VAC’s Joe Aspinall clocked a time of 34:17 which was convincingly the fastest of the M85 competitors.  

Next year’s gathering at the Bushy parkrun will take place on 6 July 2024 with the aim of 100 over 80s taking part.