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Garry Asling: the Parish Walk's "Mr Consistent" (and other stories)

Sun, 25 Jun 2017

Finishing the Manx Telecom Parish Walk and doing so in a fast time (or even breaking a record) is quite rightly celebrated, but for many participants, the target is simply getting across that finishing line within the 24 hour time limit. One man who certainly knows how to pace the Parish Walk to perfection is Garry Asling, who has now finished no fewer than 6 times, all within 38 minutes of the 24 hour mark.

Garry’s debut finish, which was also his first ever attempt, was in 2011 when he finished with just over 6 minutes to spare. Since then he has finished a further 5 times and with a remarkable consistency of speed. Three times he has finished with fewer than 10 minutes to go before the 8am deadline (this year was his slowest, as he made the War Memorial with just over 3 minutes in hand). He is certainly the model of consistency in how to get round this very challenging event. Here is his Parish Walk record:

Year Time
2011 23:53:40
2013 23:22:51
2014 23:46:34
2015 23:50:46
2016 23:48:55
2017 23:56:58

Consecutive finishes

Finishing the event just once is an achievement in itself, and for many people once is enough. Some move on to other sporting challenges, and others understandably take the view that if they’ve done it once, why bother doing it again. Some people on the other hand come back year on year to take up the challenge once more, although getting round every year takes a lot of commitment and mental strength.

The great David Collister holds the record for longest run of consecutive finishes at 30, having finished every year between 1984 and 2013. He also finished again in 2015 to take his overall tally of finishes to 31, a record which will take a lot of beating and which David may yet even be able to increase, as he still participates every year.

In terms of active finishing streaks which were extended in 2017, Up & Running proprietor Chris Cale leads the way. Chris has finished every year since 2003, which is 15 finishes in a row. In second place is Maureen Moffatt, who has made the finish every year since 2006. Interestingly, Chris and Maureen have both finished every year since their first finish, with no breaks in between.

Many other walkers have large numbers of finishes, but at some point in recent years have either had a year off, walked to Peel, or not made it to the finish. A good example is Andrew Titley, who has now finished 16 times since 2001, with his only year off coming in 2011.

Walker Consecutive Finishes to present Years
Chris Cale 15 2003 – 2017
Maureen Moffatt 12 2006 – 2017
Alan Teare 8 2010 – 2017
Gareth Brolly 8 2010 – 2017
June Melvin 8 2010 – 2017
Andrew Titley 6 2012 – 2017
Liam Parker 6 2012 – 2017
Stephanie Quayle 6 2012 – 2017
Emma Shilling 6 2012 – 2017
Greg Nation 6 2012 – 2017
Courtenay Heading 6 2012 – 2017
Adam Killip 5 2013 – 2017
Andrew Dawson 5 2013 – 2017
Roger Davies 5 2013 – 2017

In the week ahead I will conclude the analysis of the 2017 Manx Telecom Parish Walk by updating the lists of all-time fastest walkers, with a little more focus on Liam Parker and Karen Chiarello, and also the list of all-time total number of finishes.