Stopsley Striders Newsletter – February 2023

Marathon runners should be well into their training plans by now, so we would like to wish all of them well in their training and preparations, especially those doing their first one. We’re sure they will receive lots of support from our members, giving them advice and keeping them company on those long runs.

Sharnbrook saw the last of this seasons Three Counties Cross Country league meeting on Sunday 5 February, it was another strong performance by the club and we finished a very creditable seventh place, so well done to all runners and our band of supporters and helpers.

We will soon be celebrating the achievements of our members at our Annual Awards Evening, so we look forward to seeing the award winners collecting their trophies

Annual Awards Evening

Our annual awards evening will be held on Saturday 4 March at Stopsley Working Men’s Club. Tickets are now available on Spond. There are also a limited number of tickets available to those not on Spond, so please contact Andy to purchase your tickets through him.

Coming Up:

Dave Debnam Birthday Social

The next social at the Barrells is on Monday 6 March. This is also the birthday of Dave Debnam, a longstanding and hugely popular Strider, so the social this month is named in his honour. We hope to see lots of you there to raise a glass. Happy Birthday Dave!

Membership Renewals

The membership fees are due from 1 April 2023, the prices are the same as last year and you will receive an email inviting you to renew your memberships. If you wish to change your England Athletics Affiliation status please email Chris at by 1 April.

Beginners Course

Our annual Beginners Course will commence on Thursday 27 April and will run for 12 weeks. Details of cost and how to sign up will be posted shortly, but in the meantime please spread the word if you know anyone who may be interested in taking part.

Love Luton Run Fest – Change of Date

These races will now take place on Sunday 15 October. The 10k and Half Marathon races are part of the Club Championships and there’s always a great Striders turnout for this popular event. There is an early bird 25% discount available until 3 March.

Strider of the Month!

We are pleased to announce that Ade Copp is Strider of the Month for January.

Well deserved Ade!

Please see the run report for the full details.

Club Championships 2023

These races have age category 1st, 2nd and 3rd Certificates for all age categories.

5K – Marston 9 June 2023 or Hitchin 24 September 2023
5 mile – Hatfield November 2023 (Date TBC)
10K – Flitwick 16 April 2023 or Love Luton 29 October 2023
10 mile – Sandy 2 April 2023 or Leighton 24 September 2023
Half Marathon – St Albans – 11 June 2023 or Love Luton 29 October
20 Mile – Any race 2023 (not virtual)
Marathon – Any race 2023 (not virtual)
Cross Country – Ampthill Trophy 15 October 2023

– ATW Race 10% Striders Discount. Contact a Strider or committee member for the code
– £2 discount entry for all EA affiliated members)

Other Race Suggestions: January-March 2023

Gade Valley 17/20 mile – Sunday 19 March
Ashridge Boundary Run – Saturday 25 March
Oakley 20 mile – Sunday 26 March
Welwyn Half Marathon – Sunday 2 April

Don’t forget to record your race results:

For races with the ATW discount please see Active Training World Events – Active Training World Only Events with ATW as a Prefix to the race name carry the discount

For races that have ARC £2 discount for ALL members web46-arcdb — query_1 (

For races that have the EA £2 discount for England Athletics Affiliated Members Only please look out for races that are licensed by England Athletics

Please email if you want to recommend any upcoming races.

January Run Report


By Charley Snowdon & Ryan Parsons

Striders started the year by going on ‘Safari’ to Woburn with thanks to Tom Rankin who plotted an epic route through the deer and safari park! It definitely brought a smile to our faces running between the elephant and rhino enclosures and the deer park was just stunning. ‘Striders Sundays’ are definitely ‘a thing’, so if you are wanting to join a group for a long run at the weekend, or are thinking about planning one yourself, then please do keep an eye out/share on Facebook and Spond. Whatever your pace, if a run is taking place and it’s too slow or too fast, then please do get your friends together and form your own, then we can all rendezvous at the end!

Track sessions continue to be filled with much enthusiasm and gusto on a Tuesday evening at Stockwood Park and whatever your ability, you’ll be warmly welcomed. We are extremely fortunate and grateful to have qualified coaches that give up their time to train us each week. “I love track, you don’t have to think, just run at the speeds you are told for the distances suggested”, commented track enthusiast and fellow Strider Theresa Gunnell. “Track is also ideal for coming back from injury and offers a safe space to do your own thing”, said coach Maria Petts. “I try and vary sessions to keep them interesting whilst making sure that all abilities benefit, I am always open to your feedback.”

On the 7th January, Striders headed to Ampthill Park for the Bedfordshire County Cross Country Championships. I think we could be forgiven for saying some of us (umm, me Charley!) felt a little out of depth entering, but, like they say, ‘you have to be in it to win it’ so I was absolutely flabbergasted and delighted to pick up a bronze medal in my age category. Chairman Andrew Durrant joined me with an individual bronze whilst our Vet 60 men (Andrew Durrant, Paul Keech, Richard Hardy) collectively picked up team Gold!! Christine Lathwell was on fire and won her age category and was an incredible second overall. It was such a special day where Striders showed real support and togetherness. The gazebo was erected, our flag flew with pride and our ground support yet again, knocked the socks off fellow clubs.

There was no rest for some, as the following day we were out supporting the nationwide initiative ‘Run and Talk’ for mental health. Committee member Kate Mutter is a superstar at organising these regular events and Januarys get together didn’t disappoint, “It was so great to see so many happy smiley Striders faces”, said Kate. “There were a few different runs/ walks of varying length and terrain but we all managed to finish back at Costa for a chat over a cuppa.”

Stopsley Steppers were back for the New Year, the walking group lead by Amanda Rankin and Liz Evans runs alongside some club nights and run talk events (keep an eye on Facebook /Spond) and is great for members who haven’t been to club for a while or are injured/coming back from injury. Just because maybe you can’t run at the moment, the club is still here for you so please don’t disappear and likewise, if you know of a fellow Strider that is injured or hasn’t been to club lately, please do check in with that person, it’s important that we all still feel part of the club and show that we care.

The most exciting event in January was undoubtedly when we hosted our very own Cross Country and boy, didn’t we do well!

What an absolute belter of an event we laid on, I don’t think anyone could disagree. The day showcased what a club should be, we all worked together with Chairman Andrew Durrant at the helm to put on the most memorable of races.

“Congratulations and praise for an excellent team effort hosting the Cross Country and for the equally excellent running performances of both the men and ladies”, said Vice President Helen Morris. “All I heard from visiting clubs was praise, I am exceedingly proud of the club and it’s members.”

Well done to Rob Barnes, Tom Rankin, Ryan Parsons, Ellie Davies, Gez Fallon, Ade Copp, Paul Abrahams and Peter Breslin for scoring for the gents and to Charley Snowdon, Miriam Linforth, Ruth Doyle and Katerina Tuloo for scoring for the ladies.

A special mention to new lady cross country recruits Kat Tuloo, Vicki Crowston and Evelyn Lutterodt who are showing true grit and determination which is a welcome, positive and much needed boost for the club.

On Sunday 22nd January Striders were out in force at The Fred Hughes 10 in Saint Albans. Many congratulations to Dawn Keveran, Jane Few, Liz Barker, Sandy Reeve-Smith, Andrew Durrant and Nick and Leigh Betts for achieving PB’s and to Thomas Derby on his age group PB. A massive congratulations to Nick Betts for being first Strider home in a time of 01:14:10.

On Saturday 28th January, Tom Rankin, Kallum Wright, Charley Snowdon and Richard Hardy ventured to the Southern Cross Country Championships at Beckenham Place Park. The event was highly contested and attracts the strongest runners from some of the most prestigious clubs in the country. We didn’t disgrace ourselves though (you very much missed Christine Lathwell ;o)), and we all very much enjoyed rubbing shoulders with such talent! It’s so inspirational to see fellow runners run like that, it’s awe inspiring, they hold a pace that most of us couldn’t hold for 10 meters let alone over any kind of distance. I know that we all took a lot away from the experience and yet again, the Striders ground support didn’t let us down! Big thank you to John Chapman, Paul Keech and Katisha Blanchard for being there for us.

On Sunday 29th January, it was time for the Bedford 10 Mile, well done to Gez Fallon, Adrian Copp, Nick Betts, Mark Bradley, Alan Weir and Leigh Betts for flying the Striders flag. Gez ran brilliantly for first Strider home in a time of 01:08:33 and was 2nd in his age category. Alan Weir ran incredibly to come 1st in his age category (70-79!!!) in a time of 01:30:36. Special mention to Adrian Copp who is finding some form at the moment clocking in at 01:12:08.

It’s an exciting time for the club and team spirit is high, at the time of writing, Striders’s achieved more silverware after the final Cross Country event this season, full write up in next months report!

Strider of the Month

Adrian Copp for going from strength to strength. Ade has been a Strider for a number of years and has suffered past injury. Instead of throwing in the towel, Ade introduced rowing, yoga and dance into his training regime and has stayed disciplined with his running, working to the ratio; 80% easy, 20% hard.

Ade, alongside help from his physio, is now running extremely well and has regularly scored for our cross country team, as well as a notable run at Bedford 10. Go Ade!!

Please remember to upload your race results to the website and post what you’re up to on social media so we can write about you!

Many thanks, Charley & Ryan.