Rob Sharp, a loyal member of Crawley Athletic Club through the eighties and nineties, has died at the young age of 65. He was an ever-present at Sussex Cross Country and road races, and we recall his fierce battles with Colin Powell to win the club’s Winter Merit League – they once both declared themselves injured after a Saturday race, and were dismayed to meet up the next morning on the start line! 

Rob trained as hard as he raced, and Colin Hickman describes him as a truly gritty Scotsman. He continued running even with broken toes from playing football.

Rob helped Crawley to many team honours in ultra-distance races and was awarded a Scottish vest at 100km in Edinburgh. (A memorable day, with Walter Hill running for England, and Crawley the first club team to finish.)

Rob was very sociable, and enjoyed a few beers after a hard race. Our trips up to Scotland for the annual Two Bridges Race were memorable affairs, camping in the field after the post-race celebrations. Jim Parker and Jeremy Carmichael recall some great trips up to the High Peaks Marathon, where Rob would grab 30 minutes sleep after the long drive, then embark on the night’s endurance challenge, despite a flat battery in his head torch.

There was plenty of camaraderie and humour in mountain marathons, where Rob’s energy and enthusiasm far outstripped his navigation skills. Terry Barnes recalls enjoying evenings in the Shrublands Social Club with Rob, who was always good company.

Our sincere condolences to Rob’s wife, Alison, and to his daughters Samantha and Roberta.

Farewell Rob, Rest in Peace.

September 1990 Team winners of London to Brighton, Woodford 40 , SLH 30 and Isle of Wight marathon.

Top: Peter Beattie, Colin Powell, Charlie Malsbury, Dave Beattie, Jim Parker, Rob Sharp,
Bottom: Jimmy Dutch, Paul Woolgar, Arthur Waghorn.