The evening of Saturday 14th December saw the much anticipated Teignbridge Trotters Annual Awards Night, this year held at Teignmouth Golf Club. The awards evening is an opportunity to recognise some great personal achievements by its members throughout the calendar year, as well as the traditional and legendary Trotters party.
The compere for the evening was Keith Anderson, who in his third year, delivered his award winning speech to the expectant Trotters.
Roger Hayes, the Club Chairman, was invited to make the presentations.
2019 proved to be a fantastic year, with many Club records being broken and personal achievements conquered. Many Trotters set new personal bests at various distances and other Club runners completed personal goals throughout the year.
The Club Championships new change of format, now in its second year, certainly seems to have encouraged more members to take part, with 16 ladies & 19 men qualifying for each respective competition. Both Championships were keenly contested. Thanks has to go to Graydon Widdicombe, the Club Championship Secretary, for all his hard work throughout the season.
The Ladies Club Champion 2019 is Jacki Woon with a maximum point’s total of 400. A superb achievement from Jacki, who has now won a record 5 Ladies Championship’s. Runner up was Mandy Wheeler amassing 394 points and Lucy Payne finished in 3rd place with 389 points.
The Men’s Club Champion 2019 is Gary Smart, who also won with the maximum 400 points on offer. Gary retained his title, having scored a maximum points total both in 2017 & 2018!! Runner up went to the Men’s Team Captain, Lance Mason. Lance scored 395 points to edge out Roger Easterbrook, who finished in 3rd place on 393 points.
There were some fantastic performances throughout the season, but special mention must go to Molly Canham, Helen Anthony, Melanie Sheehan and Jamie Barnett.
Molly Canham set a new Club record at the Newton Abbott Ladies 10K. Molly recorded a superb time of 00:37:50, and will surely go on to lower this time in the very near future.
Jamie Barnett created new Club records in three race distances, 10k, Half Marathon and the Marathon. Jamie set a new record of 00:32:37 at the Speedway 10K, 01:09:49 at the Taunton Half Marathon and travelled to London, where he annihilated his existing Club marathon record in a time of 02:30:41, a ten minute improvement! Incidentally, all three previous records were held by Jamie!
Melanie Sheehan recorded the fastest Ladies Marathon of 2019, having completed The London Marathon in 03:16:50. This performance put Melanie in the record books, as she also beat the previous best Senior Ladies Marathon Club record by a staggering 00:04:45.
Helen Anthony ran the fastest Ladies Half Marathon of the year. Helen completed the Bath Half in 01:28:27.
The next award to be presented was the most promising female newcomer award and was deservedly won by Debbie Proctor. Debbie had a great year, having completed the Dartmoor 3-in-1, posted a great Eden Half Marathon time and completed the City to Sea. The other nominees who are really showing plenty of promise were: Ella Bowles, Alexis Marsh, Kat Ashburton-Scott & Rachel Steele. Keep up the good work.
The most promising male newcomer award was won by Joe Hornsby. Joe has become a very popular member of the Club, and set himself some stiff targets. Joe wanted to clock a time of under 40 minutes for the 10K, which he duly did at Exeter (00:39:59) and wanted to finish in under four hours in the Exe to Axe race, which again he achieved (03:41:56). The other deserved nominees were: Alan Kember and Matthew Steele.
The most improved male award was won by James Saunders. James was kept on the side-lines until March through injury, but made up for lost time during the rest of the season. James set new PB’s of 00:19:10 at the 5K Exe Series, 00:41:03 in the Hampstead Heath 10K, 01:29:59 at the Bridgwater Half and a debut Marathon time of 03:14:18 at Barnstaple. The other nominees who also had a great year were: Ian Langler, Jamie Barnett, Neil Rutley and Julian Scanes.
The next award to be presented was for the most improved female. The candidates were all nominated due to their impressive performances throughout the year. Caroline Clark deservedly won the trophy having come back from a lengthy break from the sport. Caroline has put in some great performances this year, but also forfeits her training to lead groups and to encourage others. Caroline set a new personal best at the North Devon Marathon and posted a sub two hour Half Marathon. The other deserved nominees were Emma Ray, Suzie Mills, Natalie Clare, and Louise Gentry.
The Committee Cup, awarded for great service to the Club, was won by Eleanor Taylor, who constantly updates the race diary, but also helps out Graydon with clerical problems that may arise in Club Championship races. The diary is the most visited website page! Says it all really!!
The other nominees were: Jacki Woon, Suzie Mills, Stuart Moulson and James Saunders.
The Dennis’s Cup is awarded to the best coach or leader of the year. This trophy is in memory of a beloved Trotter, Dennis Milstead. A poll is created so that the members can vote for who they think deserves the award based on their experiences whilst being coached or led. This year’s winner was Nathan Elphick. Nathan richly deserved this accolade, due to his coaching sessions being always tough but fun at the same time. A special mention must also go to all the hard work Nathan puts in behind the scenes, before, during and after the Clubs races. All our coaches deserve special praise for the leadership skills and knowledge they provide.
2019 proved to be a great year for The Teignbridge Trotters Club. Some very fine performances were achieved, and all our members represented the Club admirably where ever they travelled to race. The five races that the Club organised all proved very successful, thanks to the race directors and all the Club volunteers who gave up their own time to assist in marshalling, timekeeping etc. A great team effort. The foreign club trip to Valencia was a successful one, with some special memories! A special mention must go to all our committee members, who do such a great job behind the scenes. Without them and of course the members, our Club wouldn’t be the highly respected Club that makes us the envy of others. Let’s make 2020 another great year.
Bon Rymel became the 37th Trotter to be inked with the famous Trotter tattoo on his calf, and celebrated amongst his fellow members.
The night proved to be a great success, thanks to the efforts of Liz and Nigel Barnett, Ruth Johnson, Jacki Woon, Eleanor Taylor, Nathan Elphick, Ryan Anthony and thanks must also go to Teignmouth Golf Club for the lovely venue and a yummie buffet.
With all the formalities out the way, the Trotters partied as only Trotters know how!!
Thanks must go to Keith Anderson for his awards speech and to Suzie Mills for her great photographs.