Face of the Week
Written by Adam Drake Saturday, 12 March 2011 14:23
On 15th November 2000, which was very wet and windy, a few friends congregated in Jackie’s front room for a warm up routine and chat before setting off on the first group run. At the end of the evening Jackie had her doubts that any of these bedraggled runners would turn up for the next session. We are pleased to say Jackie was wrong, and after 10 years the group is still going strong with a really friendly bunch of ladies on a Monday night.
To celebrate her 10 years, a group of runners, past and present got together to present Jackie with a clock and gift voucher to thank her for all her support, enthusiasm and dedication. Jackie turns up every Monday, whatever the weather to take us out on training runs and has only very rarely had to cancel due to extreme weather conditions!
Jackie started at the age of 11 when she went along with her teacher to an Exeter Harriers training night as she was a reasonable high jumper. After having a go at various other events Jackie discovered running. She has now been running for Exeter Harriers for 46 years. She won County and South West Championships over 800 metres as a junior, intermediate and senior.
After a few years break to have two sons, she was then persuaded by a few friends to run the first Exeter Marathon with them. Jackie was the first local woman home in 3 hours 35 mins, but didn’t find this experience at all pleasurable - that was to be her first and last marathon! She did however enjoy running again and started to compete for Exeter Harriers over various distances on the road where she won a few county titles. At the age of 30 Jackie gave up road running and started to compete back on the track.
She won county titles as a senior over 800 and 1500 metres. At the age of 35 she had her best season so far by winning gold and silver over 800 and 400 at the Masters British Championships and a gold and two silver medals at the World Masters Championships in Eugene, Oregon over 400, 800 metres and the 4 x 400 metres relay.
After another few years break from competition after the birth of her third son, Jackie returned to win the British women’s 40 to 44 age group over 800 metres taking bronze in the 400 metres. In 1999, after an extremely physical race she finished 6th in the World final at Gateshead in the Women’s 45-49 800 metres. The same season Jackie won the British Championships over 800 metres at Eaton. 2004 was a good season as she won a silver over 800 metres and gold in the 4 x 400 metres at the Master’s European Championships in Denmark.
If you want to keep fit and have fun you are welcome to join us on Monday nights 7 pm at the Stowey Arms. It is not obligatory to take part in races or run in the above mentioned weather conditions, but the group are always there on Monday nights whatever the weather should you want to turn up.
(Written by Sue Morrish)
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