Three Thanet athletes have been formally recognised by their running club Thanet Roadrunners AC.
The trio – Mark Foster, Sharon Foster and Helen Langsemead – have been rewarded with Life Membership because of their commitment, inclusive attitude and accomplishments in their time with the club and the broader Thanet and running communities.
All three have been a permanent fixture on the running circuit, not only helping out at Thanet Roadrunners events but also taking part in Kent Cross County, charity runs and Challenge Hub and Saxon, Viking and Normans Ultrarunning events.
Sharon, Helen and Mark have all held positions in the club -Mark having been chairman – giving up an enormous number of hours marshalling. They have all done unsung jobs of setting up races and encouraging beginners throughout their journey to becoming better athletes.
Helen, who has been with the club for 12 years, said: “I have loved being a Thanet Roadrunner and have cherished the friends I have made and the laughs we all have had during club runs. Having run lots of races, I think my major achievement is running 52 miles in an Ultra Marathon at Marshside near Canterbury.”
Sharon, a member for 14 years, added: “I have loved all the camaraderie at all races and the friends I have made. Running 52 miles at the Challenge Hub Ultramarathon was also a highlight for me.”
Mark Foster, who joined the club at the same time as Sharon, said: “I have loved being able to help people and watch their development and love for the sport Although I have achieved many things in the sport, including ultra marathons, it is seeing the athletes I’ve coached achieve amazing things I am most proud of.”
Derek Sackett, President for Thanet Roadrunners AC, said: “Mark and Sharon Foster have been with the club for a long time and have always been happy to assist in timekeeping, race management and taking on the responsibility of being run leaders etc. They are good people and I am honoured to know them.
“Helen Langsmead has taken many important roles in the club, including race leader and assisting with the races. Most importantly she has filled the significant role of Marshalling Coordinator at the club for some years and before that assisting the previous director, Pauline Hall. She has fulfilled this important part in a friendly organised way. Without her, Thanet Roadrunner races would not have taken place.’
Ian Lockyer, communications officer for the club, added: “Nothing is too much trouble for the three of them. I can remember being over 17 stone and could only run about 200 metres. All three took it upon themselves to help me, and the transformation in my life was life changing. The thing is, I am not the only one they have done this for, and everyone is forever in their debt. They are just brilliant people.”
Report Ian Lockyer