Runners Brave Awful Weather For Half Marathon and 10K Run

marathon-8In the pouring rain on Sunday morning nearly 2,000 runners turned out to run the Henley Half Marathon and the 10K run.  Peter Wilkinson, Race Organiser said, “Although a number of pre-entries do drop out we did not expect the large number of entries on the day as these are normally weather dependent and a bit of drizzle would normally put some people off. We had great support from Sacred Heart School, Valley Road School, Cubitt House a London hotel/restaurant operator, Arborfield Garrison and a wide range of other groups both large and small. Many of the runners were raising funds for their own good causes and we sincerely hope that their efforts in such wet conditions were worthwhile.”

Justine Phillips, her daughter Zuzu and her son Sammy were running in memory of marathon-3her husband and their Dad (Ian Phillips) who lost his fight against throat cancer earlier this year.  Justine’s ‘Crack On’ team was made up of 16 friends who were running to support two chosen charities, The Royal Berks Charity and Sue Ryder. Ian chose these charities in recognition of the fantastic care he received and the wonderful staff who work there. At the age of 40, Ian won the 2011 Henley 10K in 38 minutes. Justine said, “He had many other top five achievements in local races during his running career and inspired many with his desire for the sport. He was convinced he could still get faster!”

marathon-10A team of 61 runners including pupils took part in the 10K and Half Marathon for Sacred Heart School.  Karen Edwards the headteacher tweeted afterwards, “I have just learned that we raised nearly £7,000 for the run. What an amazing achievement. Thank you all so much!”

Valley Road had 17 runners, many had never run before, 11 in Half Marathon and 6 in 10k. All the Half Marathon runners finished under 2:10 and the fastest Dads came in under 1:40. All money marathon-4raised will be going towards PTA projects such as replacing outdoor ground cover in early years play area. So far they have raised about £520. Siobhan Pratt, Chair of the PTA said, “The rain did not dampen anyone’s spirits, but seemed to galvanise us to run faster.  Great team spirit amongst the parents, many more inspired to run the races next year.”

A team of nine all dressed up in onesies from Arborfield Garison all ran the 10K together and were raising money for Cancer Research (photo right)


Winners, Julian Lings from Hertfordshire and Nikki Gray from Arborfield had never run the Henley Half Marathon before and were both delighted to win on their first outing.


Julian Lings


Nikki Gray

Half Marathon – Male
1st – Julian Lings (1:11:18)
2nd – Matt Hawcroft
3rd – Chris Oddy

Half Marathon – Female
1st – Nikki Gray (1:29:05)
2nd – Rebecca Nkoane
3rd – Penny Mccrabbe


Caroline Hoskins – 10K Female Winner

Half Marathon – Over 50
1st Male – Chris Rose (1:28:59)
1st Female – Jane Davies (1:30:40)

10K – Male
1st – Matthew Davenport (36:35)
2nd – Matthew Rainbow
3rd – Nathan Meredith

10K – Female
1st – Caroline Hoskins (44:20)
2nd – Alison Bird
3rd – Katie Hathaway

10K – 15-17 Years
1st – Matthew Rainbow (38:01)
2nd – Nathan Meredith
3rd – Freddie Lock


Adam Palmer running for Brain Tumour Charity

10K – Under 15 years
1st – Tom Hesketh (46:12)
2nd – Adam Palmer
3rd – Oscar Rait

The full results can be found @

Peter would like to say a big thank you to the other Rotary Clubs and a number of local community groups who helped greatly with marshalling and other duties on the day.

Next year the events will take place on Sunday 12th October 2014, starting and finishing at Dry Leas and entries will start in the Spring.


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