As a youngster, I would get home from School, get changed and go out to play with my pals.
Now I'm older, I get home from work, get changed and go out to play with my pals, but now I call it training.

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Case 118. Crown vs Angus

Ladies and gentlemen of the jury it is your sworn duty as subjects of the realm to uphold justice and deliver your verdict on the charges levelled at the defendant. You must listen carefully to the arguments, evidence and statements as given by the case for the defence provided by the defendant who, contrary to the best advice of this court has chosen to defend himself  against these serious charges, and the case for the the prosecution, lead by Doubting Thomas on behalf of the  Crown.

The charges relating to this matter are that during the course of the summer of 2012, and specifically on the 17th June 2012, Mr Steven Paul Angus, AKA athleteinaction, AKA bestathlete, AKA Pluckysfastermate, AKA SPA, AKA him that runs funny, did wilfully and knowingly profess to be 'running brilliantly' in general, and relating to the 17th June did win a jammy race and go on about it for bloody ages.

We have all heard how Mr Angus does not deny that the race winning performance was indeed jammy, admitting that had Mr Ricky Lightfoot for example decided to enter then he would have been a distant second place rather than inaugural winner and course record holder. Whilst this may be admittance of luck it is not mitigation for the deliberate and calculated  repeated act of 'going on about it for ages' afterwards. The facts are clear, and to this day remain in the public realm for all to see in the defendants personal online weblog. Not one, or two, but three individually titled postings relating to the Karrimor event, and numerous additional mentions in subsequent postings.

We have also heard Mr Angus' testimony relating to the subsequent Lakes 50 Ultra, where he claims to have admonished his critics and proved his credentials with a second and more worthy win. Ladies and gentleman of the jury - Mr Angus' subsequent performances are as irrelevant as his previous ones (did he ever mention he also won Langdale marathon once) in relation to these charges and for the purposes of your considerations should be ignored.

As to the charge of bragging on about 'running brilliantly'. whether or not the defendant was indeed 'running brilliantly' is a matter of subjection and not therefore one for you to pass judgement upon. It is the bragging about it or otherwise you must consider. As well as bragging, the court has also been made aware of the defendants propensity to talk about himself constantly and at great length. Again, these are not matters for you the jury to consider - indeed, whilst they are undesirable traits they are not crimes and should be disregarded as you deliberate your verdict.

Before you retire to the jury room you are obliged to listen to Mr Angus' final mitigating statement....

"Ladies and Gentlemen of the jury. Your Honour. I wish first to bring to your attention the Buttermere Round 22mile race in February of 2012. For a fifth consecutive year I ran faster than the previous year. In April I was forced out of the VLM but fought back merely two weeks later with a V40 personal best half marathon performance in the hilly Keswick race. By July and fellrunning season I again outperformed all previous years results in the Blencathra, Skiddaw and Rydal Round races. On road I punched above my weight in the Round the Houses race and on the very eve of this trial produced a 40 second pb at the Round Latrigg race.

In accepting I will never repeat the times achieved in my mid 30s (see RHS column), I nevertheless stand by my claim to be 'running brilliantly' in this my 44th year."

So you must now retire to consider your verdict. For a guilty verdict you must all be in agreement. If you are unable to reach a unanimous decision you must inform the clerk who will come to my chambers. I may then allow a less than unanimous decision to count as long as at least ten of you are in accord. In the event of hung jury a retrial will be required which at the great expense to the taxpaying masses, of which you are all members (except you Kev Bell), I urge you not to force.

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