Herne Hill Enjoy Rich Pickings from the Regional Veterans Club Championships. Wimbledon Common, Saturday 21/01/2023.

Sixteen first claim (and two 2nd claim) Herne Hill veterans toed the line at the Annual Vets AC (the London regional veterans club) with individual medals being picked up in abundance! The cold snap relented temporarily, allowing the race to take under sunny afternoon conditions and a balmy 6 degrees C at Wimbledon Common. Underfoot, the shadowed course remained pretty solids and the hard frozen puddles an additional obstacle. Whereas the course’s sunny stretches warranted spikes with damp grass and mud included in the 2 lap 7.7 km. long course.
Pride of place goes to Nikki Sturzaker, who as a leading W45 runner still managed the women’s overall win, successfully contending with closest female rival, W35 Matilde Lomba of Hercules Wimbledon, and getting space for a fine women’s overall victory. Nikki led home five more HHH women, of whom Alex Marginean’s return earnt a W25 silver medal and Gillian Wheeldon snuck a bronze at the W60 category. The good female numbers were completed with W55’s Mary Setyabule (4th), Alison Beck (5th) and Sarah Allen (7th).
Our HHH men were equally prominent, in both race and presentation ceremony, though lacked the overall race winner! (We have the athletes to have achieved that, too, but be in it to win it!) Our ten 1st claim men garnered 5 medals including Mike Boyle’s M60 1st place; regally over lording that category, with our own Vic Maughn taking M60 bronze. On the contrary, Waldy Pauzers won his M65 category by having to grind the three other top M65’s into submission. The three of them having been permanently at his heels with Kent’s John Barron and Serpies Jerry Lockspeiser challenging to overtake several times until the 2nd ascent out of the Queensmere hollow with 1.2 km to go. That telling climb finally split that pack from Waldy’s slipstream, but there was no let up till all four athletes crossed the finish line still in close proximity to each other.
Further individual medals were won by Ollie Morrison (3rd M45), HHH first man home, and Joffah Ratcliffe (2nd M55). Andy Simms (6th M55), Rob Nagorski (8th M55), Tom Conlon (5th M60), Tony Harran (8th M60), Ian Strong (12th M60), Mike Mann (2nd claim 3rd M70) and Gary Budinger (2nd claim 11th M60) completed our representations at the races as well as at the nearby Rushmere Hostelry where quite a few medals were on show on from our famed red and black hooped harriers.
Valdis Pauzers
HHH Vets Team Manager.

Link to Results : http://www.vetsac.org.uk/Results/VAC%20CC%20Jan%202023%20Indiv%20Results.pdf