OSR Handicap August 2020

Lots of topics to write about today, but the most important one is;

After 5 missed handicaps, we are back running again.

This is in response to our questionnaire in late July which identified that a lot of OSR’s would like some form of events, training, group runs etc, provided they could be run in a safe manner. Taking this on board, the OSR Committee considered whether and how we could hold events in line with EA guidance, OS rules and in a safe manner for participants and volunteers.

The handicap lends its self fairly well to social distancing, but the Committee took several more steps (starting individually, cleansed equipment, starter uses own pen and phone) and documented thoroughly the steps we have taken to minimise any transmission risk during the event.

Thursday’s event was also proof that God was supporting us – the weather forecast looked awful and as 17:00 approached the rain got heavier and heavier – I was looking out the window praying for a hint of sun

With unwilling legs, I wandered down to the north entrance to OS and saw people huddled under the bike sheds awning, reluctantly I opened the door and then legged it out to join them.

& then at 17:00

This was virtually a miracle

The August handicap was also notable as we ticked off another family relationship – we’ve had – Married couples – Mick/Jan Anglim, Egbe/Tim Manners, James/Vicki Clarke, & Viv/Den Alexander. Parents and Children – Mick/Jan and Brendan/Tara. Parents and Grandchildren – Mick/Jan and Oscar, Brother and Sister – Liz Beverley/Steve Pugh, Non-Married Couples – Dean Paulley/Rachael Evans & Rob Finch/Nicole Frith, but never before brothers – Paul Ashley has been a regular handicap runner from day 1, but his brother Gary cycled through the rain and then did a warm up/course recce in the rain to join us.

Also cycling through the rain was James Hewitt – he’d messaged me earlier suggesting the torrential downpour might be a good reason to wait for next month, so I was somewhat amazed and impressed to see him riding through the rain to the start line.

This was also the first handicap with a remote option – recognising that not everyone is close enough, or able to get to Explorer House for the full event, the opportunity was given to run 5k from home and submit your time – an option Adela Murray Brown, James Norris and Naomi Stanley took advantage of. If I’ve missed you off – please accept my apologies, let me know and I’ll add you in.

The rain may have stopped before we started, but there was a strong northerly wind up the Adanac Park path, and passing WTF on the way to finish – this should of course mean a tailwind down Romsey Road and Redbridge Lane, but it never works like that! The times are below, with yellow indicating a remote run.

Congratulations to everyone who ran and big thank you to Nicole, the weather turned out well for timing in the end, but at 16:55 I didn’t want to swap with her!

There wasn’t a dress code, but if there was, it would be Endure 2018 tops or OSR kit – take note Peter and Karen 😉 Also note Sienna Clarke making a guest appearance to the delight of all of us 🙂

Bored of my write up – Naomi’s is below and its much better

After 15 months of not running the handicap, I was excited I could join in from home today. In classic handicap tradition I fuelled up on 3 shortbread fingers, debated bailing due to weather/laziness/the lure of spaghetti hoops on toast and was late to the start line. But I made it!

Unfortunately, despite being in team kit, my official timer was more interested in eating the watch, so leaving Zach with Rob I set out on a long overdue 5k handicap.

After a last minute route change I set off, spurred on by the fact it was apparently pouring down in Southampton but glorious weather in Bournemouth. After my first km I was feeling good and a covid rush hour made it a lot easier to cross roads as less traffic about. Over half way and I was feeling great and thought I might as well push myself. I arrived home, to a spaghetti hoop covered child and feeling like I was about to pass out, but with a new PB PB (post baby personal best) of 27.51. Thanks to the committee for reinstating an old favourite and hopefully bumper numbers will be able to join in as no need to rush back for meetings! Now off to recover with a cider in my pjs – added bonus of not being in the office!

The Committee will look to put on further events and group sessions in the coming weeks and months – we won’t be back to pre-lockdown levels of activity, but will be looking to put on events where we can do so safely.