Darrel’s running journey started way back in the 1980’s when Coe, Ovett and Cram were still dominating the middle-distance world and the UK owned every track world record from 800 metres to the mile. In those days Darrel believed he could be the next Steve Ovett! Maybe not, but he definitely puts it down to him as to why he started running in the first place! Since then running has been part of his life in all capacities, from personal to work.
His first taste of club Athletics started with Reading AC and later took him to Basingstoke & Mid Hants before finally choosing Hatch Warren Runners to continue his journey through his veteran years! He has had the privilege of working with some very knowledgeable coaches over the years which saw him spend time under the guidance of former London Marathon winner Mike Gratton as well as taking part in warm weather training camps, working with BMC founder Frank Horwill.
Darrel has competed at a relatively high level achieving multiple Berkshire County titles back in the day over distances of Cross Country, Steeplechase, 5k and the half Marathon. He finished 10th in the Reading Half Marathon back in 2004; represented the South of England for 10k in 2006 and was ranked within the top 60 cross country runners in the country through the mid part of the last decade.
Darrel says: “One thing I love about the running world is that you can cross paths with the very best, whether it be from a training perspective or lacing up your spikes and standing on a mud filled start line at the National Cross Country Champs you still get the same sense of spirit and support.”
Since joining Hatch Warren Runners in 2017 Darrel says he has seen a totally different side to running – the fun, friendly and community feel that is at the very heart of this club, and now, since joining the committee Darrel is busily passing on some of his wealth of experience, which he says, “has been an absolute joy!”