As bib number 2019 becomes the new must have for runners, we take a look back at some of the stories that made the news in runABC South in 2018, a sporting year dominated by the Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang and the FIFA World Cup in Russia, with the Gold Coast Commonwealth Games in April being the athletics highlight.
reporter Alan Newman brought us news of Netsanet Gudeta's women-only world record (66:11) in the IAAF World Half Marathon
in Valencia in March and there was no lack of open-mouthed astonishment at the manner of Eliud Kipchoge's utter destruction of the marathon world record
at Berlin in September, achieving 'GOAT' status according to our report.
We covered the major domestic championships, mass participation and charity runs and also turned the spotlight on several of those friendly, smaller races that provide colour, choice and variety to our multi-faceted sport. We even had our roving reporter visit Gdansk in Poland to celebrate International parkrun Day.
We took an uncomfortably close look at some vital health matters
and later in the year we featured the courage of Mike Sharpe, an ulcerative colitis sufferer, who is set to run the 2019 Southampton Half Marathon
as 'Pooperman', dressed as a man sat on the loo!
Always prepared to highlight any unfairness and skulduggery in our sport, Alan brought us the shocking news of widespread cheating in Chinese distance races, culminating in the mass disqualification of 258 runners in the Shenzen Half Marathon
in December. This was one of our most widely read stories of 2018 and hopefully will not become a trend in the UK in 2019.
It was a painful year for our reporter, who suffered his first serious injury in a long running career. What seemed like a routine sprained ankle was later diagnosed as an avulsion fracture. Ever the professional, Alan shared his story with our readers and offered some useful advice
through his own experience, treatment and rehabilitation.
We hope you enjoyed our wide-ranging race reports and news items in 2018 and will continue to follow our stories in 2019. Don't forget you can subscribe to our free e-Newsletter by filling in the simple form on the home page and if there is something in particular you are interested in, try using the Search facility that appears top right on every page.
Finally, runABC South wishes you all a successful, injury free and healthy New Year.