Carol Knowles is Dudley
Ladies Beginner Of The Year.
Presentation Evening 2006 Hailed as Best Ever
Friday 14th July 2006 saw around 140 Dudley Ladies put on their
glad rags to receive the adulation and recognition for their past efforts at
the clubs annual presentation evening that was this year held at Linden
House in Tettenhall, Wolverhampton.
Proceedings began at 7.30pm when Rita welcomed everyone to the event and got
them to do
their now customary hip gyrations before starting the evening off
with a loud explosion of 140 party poppers and sitting down to a
3 Course meal
of either Minestrone Soup or Iced Melon with Ginger
Chicken Chasseur or Roast Topside of Beef or
Feta Cheese & Broccoli Bake
course, with Profiteroles in Hot Bailey’s Sauce or
Strawberries & Cream for dessert
Following the meal, which everyone said was pretty good, as a rare treat, Rita allowed Phil to speak and he
promptly grabbed the opportunity to relate a number of funny anecdotes and
experiences from this years course as
well as urge and inspire everyone to continue in the steps of Paula Ratcliffe, that would have inspired even the weakest of
The awards ceremony was begun by Rita recognizing the
contributions made to the club by all the children present and called them
all up on to the stage individually to be presented with a tiara and gift of
This was a complete surprise to the children and something that the children weren't expecting and to see their
excitement on being called up to the stage and be applauded by everyone in
the room was truly
The children and youngsters called up were,
Samantha Beese, Ben Cox and Holly
Cox, Hannah Green and Charlotte Green,
Roman Hadley and Brandon Hadley,
Jasmine Sakendar, Jessica Lavender,
Ryan Cartwright, Alex Glover
and Zac Glover, Sarah Leigh Stokes,
Jade Newton, Bethany Adams and
Then came the awards ceremony proper, with around 120 beginners each receiving
their medal, certificate and tee-shirt for running a minimum of 3 miles
during their recent 10 week beginners course before having their photograph
taken by Jan Cook and Donna Proffitt
That done the evening then moved on to the individual award winners and as Phil
explained, this year was more difficult than ever, with around 300 beginners
plus the established runners in the club and everyone with a good case to
put, just where do you start???
First to be recognized for their outstanding achievement this year were
the established runners, with Amanda Dingley leading the way. Amanda
has made tremendous improvement this year through sheer persistence and
Amanda was followed by Isobel Stavenuiter who did her first ever
race this year and is unrecognizable from the lady that first came down the
club three years ago.
Kerri Pearson was next up and received her award not just for
being a very good runner in her own right but for all the help and support
she has given to the other members in the club. This culminated with Kerri
doing 20 mile and over marathon training runs every Sunday morning just to
keep the others company even though she wasn't running the marathon herself.
Newcomer Jackie Fellows was honoured for the rapid progress that
she has made since joining the group during the cold dark nights of February
as an absolute beginner.
Karen Perry received her Outstanding Achievement Award for all the
help, support and leadership that she gives to all the groups that she takes
And finally Rachel Harris and Sarah Jones were called up together.
They always run together and have progressed together to enable them to even
For the beginners awards, Rita and Phil explained that the criteria used to
recognize achievement award winners was based upon "Value Added", in as much
that their ability was accessed from when they joined the club to what they
can do now, taking in to account other influencing factors such as returning
from injury, having just had a baby, age or losing weight etc etc.
Sarah Allman and Louise Smith - were two ladies that
couldn't be split. They started as absolute beginners 10 weeks ago but now
they always run together and have improved to such an extent that they could
now easily go out with the established ladies and will be a real asset to the club.
Collins - was next up, after everyone was told how her skill as a
bra fitter helped Rita "Point all the beginners in the right direction".
Karen then went on to become one of the courses most consistent runners.
Green - when people join Dudley Ladies even if
they become pregnant, or injured or ill or for whatever reason they can’t
make it down the club for sometime, they never really leave and this particular lady is an absolute
classic example of that. Joanne first came down the club a couple of
years ago but due to various problems of one sort or another, she had to
take a break but she came back and even though she had to start again from
absolute scratch again and overcome a few even bigger obstacles and problems
along the way, SHE DID IT !!!! and we're all really proud of her.
Ann Kelly and Eileen Bolton, are two ladies that
couldn't be split, they always run together and whilst coming to the club as
beginners 10 weeks ago, they have improved to such an extent that they have
surprised even themselves. They turn up every week, they are a joy to be
with and will be a real asset to the club.
Jade Newton – when Jade first came to the club she was worried sick, she
felt self conscious and didn't think that she would ever run 3 miles. Well what a transformation!! There is now no
comparison to that lady that first came down and she is now a very confident
and proficient runner.
Simerjit Bal - This is another lady who doesn’t
fit the normal runner’s profile. This lady started from day one and couldn’t
run for a bus, let alone run around the football pitch but now through sheer
guts and determination she’s done it and thoroughly deserves being
recognized for what she’s achieved.
Bal Bassra - Like Simerjit Bal is not a nutural
runner but between them they have done it and deserve all the recognition
that they get.
Lauren Groves - This lady’s has got a wonderful
personality. She’s always has a smile on her face and always leaves you
feeling better for being with her. She’s not a natural runner and so for her
to run 3 miles is absolutely fantastic. It’s not been easy for her but with
the support of her friends, she was determined to do it so we’re really
pleased that she got this award.
This lady doesn’t fit
the normally expected runner profile but we were impressed by her sheer
determination to do it and the way she conducted herself. Karen worked out
what worked for her and stuck at it with bags of enthusiasm and commitment.
Beginner of the Year - Carol
This lady’s has got a wonderful personality. She’s
always has a smile on her face and always leaves you feeling better for
being with her. She’s not a natural runner and so for her to run 3 miles is
absolutely fantastic. It’s not been easy for her but she was so determined
and everyone is really pleased for her because she’s a real inspiration to
She worked out what worked for her and stuck at it with
bags of enthusiasm and commitment. And the look on her face when she ran
the 3 miles for the first time was great………Her little face beamed.
Nobody but Nobody would disagree that Carol is by far
and away THE Beginner of the Year.
Other trophies presented included Sheena Di Franco's
London Marathon achievements as well as:-
of The Year - Caroline Glover – This is a very special lady. She
is an absolutely tireless worker, if she’s not doing her full time job then
she’s helping out her family or supporting and working for the club and is
one of those people who is always there with encouragement, advice and help
for everyone even when she could do with it herself.
Woman Of The Year - Brenda Chapman – This lady is an inspiration
to us all. She has a busy full time job, and
a new impending addition to the family to care for. She is a very caring
person and never
ceases to amaze us with her never ending enthusiasm. Every week she is at the club,
working, advising and supporting everyone that runs with her.
Everybody loves her and she is the epitome of everything that Dudley Ladies
of The Year - Mary Lavender – For this lady, there are no
barriers. Not only is she an outstanding runner in her own right but she is
also the best Mrs Motivator in the Midland.She is a truly
amazing lady who shows great determination and courage. She is an
inspiration to us all at Dudley Ladies and the club would certainly not be the
same without her.
Finally people that no one ever
notices but without whom the club couldn't function were also brought up on
the stage to be recognized, they included :-
Kosteczko - who was presented with a cut glass tankard
evening was finished off with a number of girls slightly the worse for wear
but happy that they'd done their bit to increase the profits of Bank's
Everyone thoroughly enjoyed the evening, with some even saying that it
should be made compulsory as it's just too good to miss.