Park king Bearman's reign may be short lived

Surrey Comet: Winner: Kingston's Phillip Bearman, third from right, with his 2013 top male points scorer trophy awarded on the ninth anniversary of the Bushy Park parkrun Winner: Kingston's Phillip Bearman, third from right, with his 2013 top male points scorer trophy awarded on the ninth anniversary of the Bushy Park parkrun

Phillip Bearman may be the king of Bushy Park in his family for now, but son Phillip is not far behind, writes Lucy Lomax.
 

Bearman topped the male points table at the Bushy Park parkrun for 2013 and  turned the year sitting in fourth place as he attempts to defend his crown.
 

The 49-year-old started competing at the iconic  event in 2007 and has since clocked up a total of 238 runs over the 5km course as he  the 250-run milestone looms large.
 

Bearman junior bettered his father’s personal best two years ago and has racked up around 163 parkruns – finishing 10th in his last outing on December 21 – in his own right.
 

The pair fought tooth and nail to top the points table with the 17-year-old ending the year just behind his dad.
 

But even if the two trade places in 2014 the Kingston AC & Polytechnic Harrier Bearman senior is only too happy to keep plodding on.
 

“He has beaten my personal best time of 17:30 by about 50 seconds,” admitted the senior partner.
 

“The best thing about the run is that it accepts all ages and it is especially crucial for youngsters to encourage them to take up running and join running clubs.
 

“I believe in the future, some of our Olympic athletes will be parkrunners.”
 

Bearman will collect a commemorative t-shirt when he passes the 250 mark, but even then he will need some help from his son to mark the occasion.
 

“I’m not sure what celebrations will be when I reach 250,” he added.
 

“There’ll probably be some sort of cake at the finish line or my son will make me wear something silly to run in.”
 

For more information on the Bushy Park parkrun, which takes place every Saturday at 9am, visit  parkrun.org.uk.

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