South Africa Connections (04/04/2017)

Earlier in the year we heard from Jonathan Such from the Rand Athletic Club, South Africa, who updated us as follows:

I have kept in contact with a number of UK runners over the years and recently had a nice letter from Ron Bentley. I hope he is still well.

I regularly write/ phone the following ......George Phipps (Leamington), Peter Hart (Leamington), Sue Harrison (Leamington), Carol Woodward (Cavin's widow) and many others.

Sadly I have to report on the death of Martin Thomson, an Australian Sports Medical Doctor who ran the hundred miler with Ron and Cavin all those years ago. He succumbed to an awful combination of bone cancer and Altzheimers.

I ran with Tipton in the mid 70's and made quite a number of friends Ron and Gordon Bentley, Bill Carr, Dougy Fownes, Daryl McWhirter and often wonder if like myself they are still running. As I approach my 69th birthday in a few days time I am thankful that I maintain good health. I am very competitive in the grandmasters category 65-69 and will be even more so next year when I turn 70 and compete at the lower age range of 70-74.

I can still do a sub 50 min 10 kms and 1h 50 half marathon .

I am currently collaborating with Doctor Tim Noakes on a chapter in his upcoming revision of the Lore of Running concerning runners in their 60's and 70's

It is very interesting that I can now beat some of the greats of the past like Bruce Fordyce, Alan Robb, Brian Chamberlain who are all still running but have slowed down more than I have.

Anyway I still have a home in the UK which my wife Carol (now married for 48 years) and I visit for 5 months each year in Chepstow. I try and get up to Leamington each year for the one hour track race and will one day do the Cambridge boundary run again which George Phipps and I did so well in in 1976 blowing all the Varsity Blues away.

I am currently pondering doing one last Comrades Marathon next year at 70 years old with my younger daughter who has turned out to be a gritty little runner at the age of 40. Bless her."