BRONZES AT ‘THE BENSON 7’

Not to be confused with some sort of horror film, the Benson 7 is a 7-mile road race which takes place on the rather hilly roads around RAF Benson.

By kind permission of the Stn Cdr RAF Benson, Gp Capt N J Colman OBE MA RAF, the 49th RAF Benson 7 was held on Thursday 12 Sep 13.

The day began rather gloomy, but soon cleared up for the start of the race. At 1400 sharp, 105 runners took off around the 11.2km course. The field was lead out by the usual faces of Cpl ‘Oz’ Ellis (RAF Cosford) and Sgt Vernon (RAF Wyton) but in hot pursuit were the runners from High Wycombe, lead by Wg Cdr Matt Cornish.

The course is run over one large and one smaller lap, and after the first lap all of the runners had become pretty well spaced out, giving the spectators’ lungs a good workout too!

Wg Cdr Cornish was the first High Wycombe runner home in a storming time of 41:17, finishing 5th overall. Second from the station was Fg Off Abi Bagshaw, leading the ladies home in 43:31 and claiming the course record. A valiant effort saw Cpl Al Healy finish just behind in 44:33, not quite enough to escape the banter of being beaten by a girl at work! Flt Lt Jamie Smith was the third High Wycombe runner home, happy with his time of under 50-minutes (48:59:00).  The men’s team was completed by Flt Lt Mark Naden (52:40) and Sqn Ldr Dave McRitchie (57:02) who was banking some miles for his marathon later in the year. Second lady home was Sgt Mandy Meechan (55:01:00) in her first ‘come-back’ race post injury, and Flt Lt Angelina Littlefield (55:47:00) also clocking up the marathon miles.  Both the mens’ and ladies’ teams finished in 3rd place overall, which was an excellent result in the presence of some very strong teams fielded by other stations.

If you are interested in representing the station in the future please contact Flt Lt Paul Harrap, or Fg Off Abi Bagshaw (95221 4814)  for more information. Further fixtures and full results of the race can be found on the RAF Athletics Association website, www.raf.mod.uk/rafathletics.