Team SLGR 2019

We had another great year with Team SLGR and it’s amazing members, so first of all, thank you all so much for making it so special.

Chris ran through some of the highlights at the AGM but there were so many more and not enough time to cover everything so, for those who didn’t make it and with all the extra bits, here’s a quick recap of 2019.


We had our first ever SLGR race with 112 Runners, lots of great volunteers and Alan G Smith was our first winner. We will be doing it again in 2020 but due to fixture clashes, it will be on 12th July, same course, same distance but we will be opening it up to other clubs and individuals. We have a medal designed, it will be chip timed and we are looking at a goody bag.


Kay Kapsalis, Wendy Chatman, Keith and Martyn Allchurch at Paris Marathon


We started our first ever 0-5 Group, which was a great success despite the traffic chaos that day with over 20 newbies on day one and more joining over the next couple of weeks, 15 of whom stayed the course and completed all 9 weeks and 5 have joined the club.

We had 45 Wallys at Harvel and quite a lot of alcohol.

Eight runners took on the 30k North Downs Run

Kay Kapsalis, Wendy Chatman and Kelly Harris all conquered the beastly Beachy Head Marathon


We had 20 Runners at Palma for the half and 10k in very hot conditions, 27 degrees at 9am, getting warmer by the minute.


36 runners braved the mud and the hills of the Lullingstone 10k all for a Curly Wurly, you guys are so easily bought.


21 runners in grass skirts and Hawaiian shirts at the very muddy Maidstone Turkey Trot

We had two SLGR babies this year with the arrival of Leo and Jack and Sarah Honour and Elaine Oxlade have both made their post baby comebacks while Sarah Cooper is running for two with Mini Cooper Mark 2 due in April. Congratulations all.

We also had an SLGR engagement between Mandie Lockwood and Gary Clements, she’s a brave girl !!!

It’s been a great year for our new runners

Claire Featherstone went from moaning about 5k to moaning about half marathons and even one run of 16.4 miles.

Karen Avis has been steady and keen, building up towards her Brighton marathon run this April

Tyson, Louise and Mandy from the 0-5’s have all improved times and distances steadily since the end of the course with aspirations to go further and faster next year.

Debra Hole also on the 0-5, arrived at the Fudgeathon planning on doing 10 miles in her build up to London Marathon in April and did a half marathon. I believe she has done more since.

Carol Crowther had completed two half marathons within the nine week 0-5 course and had just completed her first marathon.

Mandy Portman had two bad falls and still keeps coming back

Martyn Allchurch is a new member who had run one 10k previously to doing two half marathons, a 20 miler and a marathon (he also told everyone every time he went a step further than his previous longest!) all by May. Best not ask what he did after that! 

Richard and Joanne Danston who also both run over 1000 kilometres last year and Richard ran his longest distance ever.

Emma Gibbons and Diane Todd both went from 0 to half marathon and bought half the family along to the 0-5s as well.

First Half Marathons

Lisa Bissett

Carol Crowther

Debra Hole

Emma Gibbons

Diane Todd

Claire Featherstone

Luke Oxlade 2 on consecutive weekends

Martyn Allchurch

First Full Marathons

Fleur did 2 including the first one on one of the hottest days of the year

Michelle Loader

Samantha Goodman

Carol Crowther

Martyn Allchurch

First Ultras

Natasha Godfrey

Jonathon Algar

Mark Browne

Kelly Harris

As a committee we have to sit and decide who to give our awards to and it’s a really difficult decision, do you pick the person who ran the furthest, the fastest, over came life challenges, showed great team spirit, there are so many reasons why you all deserve an award. Here’s just a few of the stars that shone in 2019.

Alan G Smith

Took 1 hour off of his 50 mile PB at the South Downs Way

Ran his first 100 mile race Centurion 100

Ran over 1300 miles last year

Phil Amos

Took over 1 minute off of his 50 mile PB, not as impressive as Alan’s 1 hour but definitely worth a mention.

Came 14th in the 100 mile 1066 Challenge and also did the Centurion 100 miler

Jonathan Cooper

Ran the North Downs Way 50 miler

Iain Love

Various ultras and triathlons including at least one 30 mile and one 50k run. He’s also been very supportive of lots of our other runners on SVN events, running with them to get them around and sweeping up on a Tuesday. He got a few mentions in the Runner’s Runner vote too.

Andrea Hudson gets the award for running a race furthest from home after her trip to the Far East. She’s also run 9 half marathons this year including one a few days after smashing her face in on the pavement. Not to be recommended, but well done.

Karl Hebblewhite ran both London and Berlin Marathons

Carol Crowther

As mentioned, Carol joined our 0-5 group in June and had madly completed two half marathons before the end of the 9 week course. She has run several more since then and upped it to a marathon just after Christmas. She didn’t become a member until about August, otherwise, she probably would have snatched the most improved award but as she’s planning an ultra and more marathons, I think she is in with a good chance for 2020.  

Well done to everyone.

And so, onto the awards.

Men’s GP

Before the December race there was only 0.1% between 2nd and 3rd with Mark in the lead but after a fantastic run by Phil at The End of The Year 10 Miler, he just pipped Mark to take second place by 1.3%

1st – Darren Alyward 391.42

2nd – Phil Batchelor 386.11

3rd – Mark Browne 385.8

In the Women’s GP Wendy would have made third place if she had taken part in one more GP race result and we had a bit of a scare at the AGM after realising that Lisa’s result wasn’t listed for The Big Half and as she was in fourth place and only just over 1% behind Natasha in third, that result could have meant that we were giving the trophy to the wrong person, so I had to find out who’s place Lisa had taken to find her result and check the score. Unfortunately for Lisa, the result wasn’t one of her best six so the result stood as it was and Natasha gets the third place spot.

1st Janet Cooper 419.62

2nd Suzanne Curran  387.42

3rd Natasha Godfrey  333.77

Best Male – Dave Reid

In the end we went for Dave because he has been a consistently good runner who had a major health scare at the end of 2018 but after having a pacemaker fitted has made a strong and steady comeback and is also a very supportive and encouraging team member who always gets a mention in the Runner’s Runner vote.

He’s hoping to continue his recovery with a return to the NDR 2020.

Best Female – Kay Kapsalis

The 0-5 group was her brainchild, she pushed for us to run a course and it proved to be a huge success. She helped throughout, setting up a WhatsApp group for the new runners to offer support and answer questions.

A great Run Leader, supporting and buddy running where required.

A consistent runner, attending Park Runs almost every week and has run two marathons this year including the evil Beachy Head.

Most Improved – Luke Oxlade

Luke has hit several PB’s in 2019 and took on his first half marathon at the Big Half in March followed by his second, the week after at Dartford.

A consistent Park Runner

The member to have run more GP events in 2019 than anyone else, only pulling out on the day of the last one in December, he was gutted, we all were.

He coped incredibly well with pregnancy and a new baby and still managed to keep running, or maybe that was why he was running. Either way, we all felt that his effort and improvement deserved recognition.

Runner’s Runner – Luke Oxlade

For all the same reasons that we thought Luke deserved the award, it seems that you guys did too. You also commented that he was a generally nice guy, always willing to run with you if you need a buddy and supportive of his team.

It was a close vote with Iain Love getting a few mentions, Fleur also got quite a few votes, it seems her nagging paid off and for some reason you appreciate my whistle blowing and nagging, you guys are really sadistic but thank you for the votes. It’s a pleasure to torture you all.

I would also like to give a shout out to the committee, you don’t always see what everyone gets up to on your behalf but they all give their time and energy for free and one in particular puts in a lot of work without much fanfare and that’s our leader Chris Preston, I think you will all agree that he did a great job at the AGM, hopefully he’ll bring his glasses next year but he’s very god at winging it.

Here’s to a great 2020. Keep Running