2021 Photo Special

Paul Hawkins and The Hawkinettes.
You had a better chance of seeing Haley’s Comet this year than Paul. The good news is that he’s threatening to return in January.
This, the 50th newsletter of the year, is the annual photo round-up.

It was another year when the surreal became the real. Again. It seems the new normal has been going on for so long, I can barely remember what the old normal was.

But as these photos show it takes more than a worldwide pandemic to stop Stratford Upon Avon Athletic Club doing what it does and enjoying doing it.

It was a year that started off virtual but then progressed to actual races and competitions and boy did we as a club make the most of it.

It’s worth remembering that none of this could happen without our many volunteer coaches and officials. None of it. Thank you.

I’m sure you will all have your own favourite athletics memories from the last 12 months, for my part, they were the glorious return of Junior XC with over 50 of our junior endurance runners making the 50 mile round trip to Newbold Revel, also all of the Vets T&F fixtures, especially the one we hosted at the track and the Cup Final.

Then there was that glorious day in September.

The Club Championships, when the sun really did shine on the righteous. Just to see the smiles on the faces of members, parents, coaches and officials was something truly special. It definitely left me with a warm glow.

If all’s certainly not well with the world at the moment then for those precious few hours it somehow seemed as though it was.

Life affirming. 

Here’s hoping that in 2022 you or your children can enjoy the jumping, throwing, running, walking, swimming and cycling that this wonderful club of ours encourages. 

One Club One Voice.

This will be the last newsletter of the year as I’m off for a week’s break next week, so it just remains for me to wish you all a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

Please take care.

Very Best Wishes.

David Jones.
 I bloody love this photo. Henry Thomas bends Toby Spriggs’ ear about the current state of the world – or some such
Little did Alex Yee realise when he won an individual silver medal at Tokyo in the triathlon and a team gold in the triathlon mixed relay that this would mean he would get to meet real triathlon royalty in our very own Charly Marshall.
Proud to wear the vests. Andrew Pozzi in his club vest in Manchester earlier in the year and competing for GB in his 3rd successive Olympics in Tokyo. The boy done good. The boy done very good.
Ben Kruze had an awesome record breaking year.
Josh and Ben Harrison who undertook the challenge of running and cycling the 874 miles equivalent to driving from Lands End to John o’Groats, with the hopes of raising £874 for Multiple Sclerosis Society because It’s a charity close to their families heart. They ended up raising over £2000!
The Junior Endurance Group’s Sunday morning sessions on the Welcombe Hills went from strength to strength this year.
You would not believe that these two ladies had just run 26.2 miles each in the Manchester Marathon.  Aren’t you supposed to look just a little bit exhausted ?
Jan Turner and Sandie Owens.
I’ve often commented about us being a club with competitive members aged from almost 8 -80. Well there’s no almost about it now. 8 year old Noah Burdus-Cook  (yes that is his dad on the horizon) and 80 year old Roger Wilson ( still knocking out sub 26 minute park runs as an octogenarian.) Both are shown here enjoying the Stratford parkrun.
The Club Championships.

What a truly glorious day it was
Christmas Runs.
Zak Lambert – Comfortable winner of the Junior Endurance Group’s Christmas Hat of the year. Henceforth he will be known as Zak the Hat.
Gill and Graham Wilson enter into the spirit of things at The Christmas Run.
Junior XC was back!
And it rained……….of course.
Our U11,U13, U15 and U17 teams.
And so was Senior XC.
The track hour. I love it.
Vets T&F

It was another successful year for our vets’ T&F team who ended the season finishing 3rd out of 21 teams from the Greater Midlands area in the end of season Cup Final.
It had been a long day. Yours truly takes a break.
A rare appearance on the track this year for Chairman Paul Hawkins.
At the end of the fixture we hosted at our own track,
We even laid on refreshments. Niamh Hillard and Maisie-Joy Spriggs.
Toby Spriggs who was there to support and help at all of our fixtures. Kind of a lucky mascot I guess.
This T&F is SO much fun. Kate Sergent..
Representing Midland Masters.
Dave Wilson.
Senior T&F
It was also an extremely successful year for our Senior T&F team who were undefeated throughout the season.
Owain Jones takes the plunge in the steeplechase.
Triathlon.
This year’s newsletters were greatly enhanced by Simon Taylor’s regular update on all things Tri. Many thanks Simon.
Some of our greatly valued volunteer officials without who………
Some of the fabulous and enthusiastic recent group C25Kers. Welcome to the wonderful world of running.
A huge vote of thanks is due to Christine Cooper for all of her work writing and submitting reports to the local press and also  to The Stratford Herald who continue to be extremely supportive.
It was a successful year for our decathlete Adam Farrow who seemed to be a permanent resident at the track, such is his dedication and commitment. More often that not he was being coached by the equally dedicated and committed Sandy and Imogen Green,
For some of our members a gentle 10k just doesn’t seem enough.
 
Imy Sheppard, 2nd right, is enjoying life at Birmingham Uni. some of that enjoyment is actually on the track!
Matt Burdus-Cook had an extremely successful year, breaking club records aplenty.
Niamh Hillard and Tilly Campbell celebrate the return of XC.
Alex Adams’ just continues to go from strength to strength. His talent, dedication, work ethic and commitment paid dividends again this year. 
Rich Shepherd shown here after breaking the club’s marathon record at this year’s London Marathon.
Richard and Cherry Eden at Blenheim Palace.
Duathlon superstar Fern Hordern.
Charlotte Gravelsons.
Paula Ratcliffe puts on a brave face despite the fact that her and her family had been soundly beaten by Hannah Osborne and her talented children.
Fin Hutchinson and Josh Dobedoe seen here enjoying the Summer Six.
Our very own Golden Girl, Paula Williams.
Taylor Stubbins, Ned Campbell and Caleb Spriggs.
Sarah Boundy and young Bryce
It was great to see Rory Dwyer back competing this year, seen here on top of the podium.
Josh Harrison.
Team Hilly 100.
Earlier in the year it seemed a week didn’t go by when Cadie Hibberd wasn’t running a new PB. Seen here in her Cardiff Uni strip.
A gathering of Hillards and Thomas’s with a crazy McMillan at the back.
The Big Man Lewis Byng with Sandy and Paul.
Seb Hillard going through his paces. Lockdown was never going to stop him training.
It was another hugely successful year for Georgie Campbell.
Just Remember…..
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