David Kindred kicked the month off with a trip to Longleat for the postponed Longleat 10k. Whether he fed the animals remains uknown but he only had to wait a week to get rid of any disappointment at not setting a PB with a new 5k PB in the North Hampshire Time Trial on the 7th March.
Also on the 7th March, UKnetrunner were putting in a fine performance at The Shakespeare Raceway 10k, a new race on the calendar. Pearce Phillips, Ian Thomas and Robert Hundley all set PBs, finishing within 2 minutes of eachother. A day later, but also over 10k, Krissie Newton and Stuart Graver were busy clocking up more PBs.
Sticking with 10k, and possibly sticking in the mud, Matt Dunn finished off the off-road G3 series with a fine performance. Mark Willcocks obviously liked the look of Matt's off-road events, but felt they weren't challenging enough. Why run 10k off-road, when you can run 20 miles! After finishing the aptly named "Grizzly" event, Mark is sure to find 26.2 miles on the road a breeze.
Back on the road, Barry Davis smashed his 10 mile PB by nearly 6 minutes at the City of Salisbury 10 mile. Charlotte Dutch made her half marathon debut at Milton Keynes on the 8th March before bettering her time by 6 minutes just a week later at Silverstone. Silverstone saw a big turnout for UKnetrunner with both Ian Thomas and Robert Hundley setting PBs. Robert bettered his time by a whopping 10 minutes and Ian took another step closer to breaking 90 minutes.
With marathon season approaching, March is a popular month for 20 mile events. Mike Jarman, Claire Hesketh and James Barnes all made their debut at the distance in the Trimpell 20 mile. A week later it was Robert Hundley and Pete Stockdale running their first 20-miler at the Ashby 20. The same event saw a PB for David Robertson. A special mention for Shaun Bonner who also ran 20 miles, at the Hull 20, despite having a tough few months with a back injury caused by a car crash. He worked hard and finished the race and thanks to physio is looking to sort this injury out and return to regularly setting PBs like he did last year.
Looking North, Mark Hill ran well in the South Leeds 5m, his first time at this distance. Even further north, and over Hadrian's Wall, was Ann Hood setting a new Half Marathon PB in Alloa. Continuing her consistent improvements just a week later, Ann ran a new 10k best in the "Round the Houses" Grangemouth 10k. Back south of the border now, Steve Allenby and Mike Pullon both set new PBs in the Lincoln 10k. Ian Thomas took a step closer to the magic 40 minute mark with a PB at the Jaguars Spring 10k.
The final weekend in March was a big Half Marathon weekend around the country as people finished off their preparations for the London Marathon. Matt Dunn knocked a massive 9 minutes off his PB in Liverpool and had it not been for a marshall sending him the wrong way, Stephen Price would also have a new PB. Jon Hullis, Mike Jarmin and Claire Hesketh were all setting new best times in Reading, with Mike knocking a staggering 25 minutes off his previous best. The other major half of the weekend was Wilmslow, which saw Mike Barry's last race under the UKnetrunner name. Mike's joined a local club and we wish him all the best with the future and his first full marathon.
Bucking the half marathon trend was Dean Ward, whose last minute entry in the Weston 5m proved to be a great decision as he knocked 6 minutes off his PB.
The first quarter of 2009 has seen plenty of PBs for UKnetrunners and the lead in the Grand Prix has changed several times. Ann Hood is flying the flag for the ladies and proudly sits at the top of the table. Her progress so far suggests that she'll be a strong contender for the title at the end of the year.
Here's a pick of what's in store for April...
Cornwall Coastal Trail Half: Wendi taking part in the latest of the Endurancelife Coastal series.
Kingston Breakfast Run: Laura and Matt Dunn add the finishing touches to their marathon preparations.
The Oakley 20: Rob Hundley also finishing his preparation for the marathon.
Paris Marathon: Tony Tamburro's already finished his preparations as he travels over the channel to the French capital.
Maidenhead Easter 10: David Robertson, Matt Dunn, Stephen Gunn, Bridget and David Kindred all hoping this will be a Good Friday!
Lochaber Marathon: David Robertson and Wendi Witton enjoy the scenary... for 26.2 miles!
London Marathon: Love it or hate it, this is the big one. Mike Jarman, Pete Stockdale, Matt Dunn and Rob Hundley all join the masses for a trip round the Capital.
If you've got a race coming up, please add it to the calendar and if you fancy meeting up with another member at the same event, please feel free to visit the club forum to arrange a meeting point.