Barrow Runners

Vice Captains – Mark Sadler (Mens) and Monique Raaijmakers (Ladies)

Mark and Monique will work alongside the captains, ensuring as a club we are supporting, inspiring and motivating members on training and events.


Mon is also the person to speak to for all Barrow branded kit, from vests to hoodies. For more info visit our kit page.


Mark

I started running in the autumn of 2008, having joined my first and only running club, Barrow Runners. My first race was a relay along the Tissington Trail. My son was running and Ian Paramore said 'Ask your dad to bring his kit as we might be short'. This was how I found myself at the top of the trail in the swirling snow, alongside fellow club members, Bomber and Mon. After the run we all met in a nearby hostelry for Sunday lunch. We filled the place, so much for the loneliness of the long distance runner!

I am a novice on the committee and just starting my first full year as the men's road vice-captain. However, I am aware of the league races, having completed them all for the last six years.

I am married, with two children who are both much younger than me, and have lived in Barrow for over twenty years. When not running, I play the tenor saxophone in the Loughborough Concert Band, and we will usually have a concert coming up which you are all welcome at.

Outside of school athletics, my running history is very short. I used to play basketball and football, so my idea of a long run used to be about 80 yards as an overlapping full back!

I may not have won any races (yet), but I have a great feeling of achievement for many of my runs. With a Barrow Team, we came third in the Round Leicester Relay, I was the third in my age group (£10 – my first prize money!) in the 2015 Joy Cann 5 miles race, the same year I managed a fifth place finish in the Melton Parkrun. This year, I have also managed a PB at 10k (43.13 at Lincoln), so there is hope for me yet.


Mon


It seems a very long time ago now when I first joined Barrow Runners and thought that a 'run' was something I did on a hockey pitch, down the wing on a rugby pitch (until I broke both my arm in two places) or something I enjoyed doing on a squash court.

Memories of my first 'long run' at the Great North Run were not positive ones. Kath had to put up with a very grumpy me after I thought I'd cracked it but was told we we only at mile 9. It hurt ...

Since then, I've embraced the mud, the hills and distances further than the standard court or pitch I'd grown used to. Some marathons are now even included in 'my favourite runs' category.

I first entered the London Marathon back in 2005 and raised funds for Guide Dogs for the Blind. since then I've been lucky enough to gain good for age places in another 7 great London races.

For those who know me, I'm not the best in the cold. A bit whingey I know and quite predictable but I blame it on my Zambian upbringing, Dutch blood, spells in Guyana, Sri-Lanka and Spain. I came to live and study in England in my mid teens after deciding that I couldn't cope with Canadian winters and after being influenced by the Famous Five and Mallory Towers books!


Running/Tri achievements

Completing the Virgin London Marathon 2017 after surgery and beating cancer

Enjoying the Vitruvian Half Ironman for my 50th


Barrow Runners Club Champion 2004, 2005, 2008, 2011, 2012, 2015

Barrow Runners Vet Champion- 6 times

LRRL Vet Winner 2009 - 2015


Memorable races

Both Mixed Barrow teams winning the Round Leicester relays - 13 stages, 87 miles around the beautiful Leicestershire countryside

Charnwood Hills in the snow

Northumberland Coastal run

Belper 30km

Lakeland Trails Series, Keswick 10km

Coming Up

Club Session
Thursday, 24 January 19:00
Ratcliffe College

Midlands XC Championships
Saturday, 26 January
Newbold Comyn, Leamington

Peddars Way Trail Ultra Marathon
Saturday, 26 January
Knettishall Heath, East Anglia

Viking Way Ultra
Saturday, 26 January
Humber Bridge, Yorks

Waterway 30
Saturday, 26 January
Retford, Notts