Regular training: Wednesday evening

We’re mixing up the winter schedule a little – here’s a reminder: main club nights 2018/19. And for the race minded – Borders League and XC. Confused? Talk to the committee.

We’re a welcoming group that looks out for each other. Can you run 3 or 4 miles at whatever pace? You’re in!

We meet every Wednesday for a 6:30pm start at the Helsby Community Sports Club. We’re now on the winter program of mainly road runs (plus headtorch hill option, depending who turns up) — don’t be intimidated, nothing too hard and we have folk of all paces out. Getting started: give it a go. Come and say hello, make yourself known. Something like “Hello I’m new, I’d like to go for a run” should do the trick. More…

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Weekly round-up 27-10 to 4-11

Firstly a message from Paul Foster regarding the upcoming XC fixture.
Hi all
The second fixture in the Liverpool & District cross country will be held at Sefton Park on 24th November 2018

This event is pre entry, so if any Helsby runners would like to run in this.
Please email me on mooeyf@hotmail.com

No later than Monday 5th November to confirm your entry.
This is a great event in the xc calendar

It is free to all Helsby first claim members.

So to all the regulars and new members Best of Luck but please check your diary before entering.
Cheers
Paul

Race Report – Lausanne Half Marathon by Geoff Collins

Richard Hankins & I took a trip to Switzerland last weekend to run the Lausanne half marathon, together with Richard’s brother Mark, a Swiss resident.  I’d seen this race advertised while on holiday earlier in the year and decided to give it a go.  A nice t-shirt and medal are included.  In fact this was my third visit to Switzerland this year.

The half was one of several races on the day, there is a marathon option, a 10k, a walking race and even a Nordic walking race!

Pre-race preparations included the usual carb loading session on Saturday night. This was at the excellent Va Piano Pasta restaurant in Lausanne.  Together with the extended Hankins family, the venue certainly proved quite an experience.
The half marathon starts in La Tour-de-Peilz near Vevey and follows the smooth well maintained closed main road in a westerly direction.  This took us back to Lausanne along the banks of Lake Geneva to finish in front of the Olympic Museum.  Lausanne is where the International Olympic Committee HQ is based.  Race entry gives you free travel on the train to La Tour.

The race unusually didn’t start till the afternoon.  This was a bit of a pain because of waiting around in the cold, but at least the rain had stopped by then.  The afternoon start is because the half follows the marathon runners along the same route.  The organisation of this race was excellent, the route is very scenic, with views across Lake Geneva towards France and the Alps.  There are many vineyards along the steep south facing slopes on our right most of the way.

The road sweeps round a lot of gentle curves, with dips and rises giving the impression it was rarely flat.   We both thought the course seemed harder than we were expecting.  It was also very cold on the day, I struggled to stay warm which wasn’t made any easier with a noticeable headwind at times.
The half marathon wasn’t a mega huge race either, just 4,328 finishers so it never felt very crowded on the course.  There was a penned start to segregate the runners, some being held back for quite a while to create more space.

It was a lovely weekend with lots to see in Lausanne, the Olympic museum being outstanding and well worth a visit, admission 18f.  Everything the Swiss do, they seem to do very well.

Results:
Winner  Alemayehu Wodajo 1h 06m

Richard Hankins 1hr 29m
(Mark Hankins 1hr 44m)
Geoff Collins 1hr 52m.

 

Fitzy send this is from Abergele 5 mile race

Myself, the captain and Hannah had been selected for “The Shire” for this one, this race being the opposite of the last one we did together in Meerbrook which was super hilly, this one being flat as a pancake apart from the caravan park hill for a few hundred metres around mile 3, but what goes up must come down, so it was super fast coming back down.

The weather forecast had been looking grim for this one, but once we got to Abergele the winds had died down and the rain had disappeared. The issue with this race is the first 2 miles are super flat and super boring, the course being an out and back along coastal path, up the steep hill and around the caravan park to come back on yourself. If you go out too fast on the first mile your screwed which is exactly what i did. The North Wales guys we were competing against where super quick, so me thinking i’m running pretty well at the minute decided to go with them, and got taught a bit of a running lesson, after the first few miles i wanted to give in.

I managed to secure a counter for Cheshire which helped us finish second (out of 2 teams ha ha) and Hannah Cowley again coming home in first place and a women’s course record. Well done Hannah. A mention also to Junior and Senior Wiggo, apparently they turn up to this one every year, I can only assume it’s because they own a caravan out here as it’s not the greatest road race i’ve ever done. Well done guys

Full results are below
https://tinyurl.com/kvq2x25

 

Col Thompson sent in this report from Halewood 5K
Myself, Louise, Nathan Woods and Tracy Woods all ventured over to Halewood on Saturday for the monthly 5k. Excellent organisation as always and conditions were very good for fast times, I’d be rabbiting on about how fast this course was so I was a bit nervous that I’d oversold it but luckily Nathan and Tracy both smashed it with a PB each coming in at 17:22 and 25:54 respectively. Superb running guys! Thank you to Louise for the support and photos, the full results can be found at the link below.

http://knowsley-harriers.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/11/Race-3-Nov-2018.pdf

Parkrun:
Helsby members were in action around the area, highlights included a first place for Col Bishop and a 2nd Lady for Rachel Arnold

Cheers
Gaz

Helsby weekly round-up from 22nd October to 28th October 2018

Hello Green Army

Please keep on sending your reports in to helsby-race-reports@outlook.com, it makes us bloggers lives that little bit easier, as we can just cut and paste, we’re good at that, we’re not good at writing the reports each week.

Message from Foz re; upcoming XC

Hi all. The second fixture in the Liverpool & District cross country will be held at Sefton Park on 24th November 2018. This event is a pre-entry event, so if any Helsby runners would like to run in this please email me on mooeyf@hotmail.com no later than Monday 5th November to confirm your entry.
This is a great event in the XC calendar, it’s free to all Helsby first claim members, although the club do pay this for you so please double check your diaries for any clashes.
So to all the regulars and new members best of Luck.
Cheers
Paul
Message from myself

A week tomorrow (11th Nov) is race 2 in the borders league, and it’s a local one in Upton, by Chester, CH2 1NN. It’s a 9.30am start because of remembrance Sunday, and i think this is an ideal opportunity to smash our record of runners who have attended a borders league race. I think the record was 40 a few seasons back, we had 33 at the last one in New Brighton with quite a few of the regulars missing. It would also be great to see even more new faces as well.

So, could i please ask Felsby, Trailsby, second claim runners, and you regulars to turn up in your droves for this one. It’s a great 5 mile measured race around the Spring 5 route for anyone wanting an official PB. It’s free all you need to do is bring your club vest.

See you all next Sunday

http://www.bordersleague.org.uk/fixtures/

 

Race report from myself

Last Sunday seen the start of the Sunday XC season in Clarke Gardens, Liverpool. I believe this was a record turnout of over 500 runners for this extremely popular free club race, and the conditions were near perfect, lovely clear blue skies, a little chilly and plenty of incentive to hurry up and finish the race with dohnuts galore, cakes, and huge jammie dodgers for us Helsby runners.

First 3 in for the men were myself, the captain followed by the in form Phil Tomkinson. The mens team came in 6th overall out of 24.

First 3 in for the ladies were Laura BH, Christine Roach and Debbie read. The ladies finishing in 10th out of 24.

The next fixture is on 18th Nov, in Skelmersdale. Full results below

http://www.stevesaunders.co.uk/xc/2018/race1_18.pdf

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Parkrun

We had runners at Pheonix, Chester, Delamere, Widnes, & Birkenhead. Well done to Roy Gaskill , 22nd at Widnes. Our consolidated club result are HERE

That’s all folks

Fitzy

Helsby weekly round-up from 15th to 21st October 2018

Hello Everyone,

Welcome to the Helsby RC weekly round-up.

Reminders:

First of all a reminder of what’s coming up this weekend:

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If you haven’t already entered the Snowdonia Marathon then its too late now but you can still just turn up for the X-Country on Sunday. The North West Cross Country League is a series of 6 races on a Sunday morning. They are free to enter, just turn up in your club vest.  The first one is at Clarke Gardens.  Details can be found at www.stevesaunders.co.uk or ask around at the club.

Next, we have a couple of posters sent in by Betty to remind us of local Helsby Club events. Please attend and support the club if you can:

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London Marathon entries

A message from our Jackie Keasley:

“London Marathon Club Place. – it looks as if we will get 1 entry for our club for next years London Marathon.   Appplications for club places open Nov 5th, so we will not know for sure until after this date.

Anyway, to give us an indication of who is in the draw, please can you send me your rejection slip/email if you would like to be entered in the draw. Please note our club rule for this.

Code 2 London Marathon Places

Each year Helsby Running Club gets allocated some London Marathon places (currently 2). Club members who have entered the London Marathon but are unsuccessful in securing a place through the general ballot can be entered into the draw for these places. Those wishing to be entered into this draw must supply their rejection slips plus there is a further requirement that they must have competed in at least two Border League races in the previous 12 months before the draw (usually held in November).

Cheers in running

Jackie 
(email me or hand it to me or Joe or Phil on a Wed)”

Racing News

Fell Relays – Saturday 20th October 2018

Thanks Sue Buck for sending in a report regarding your leg of the British Fell Relays on Saturday, and well done to all who took part.

“What a fantastic event! This was my first time at the fell relays and I thoroughly enjoyed leg 4. We were greeted in Grasmere with drizzle and cloud. I was very nervous as it was team event (I didn’t want to let anyone down) and I knew that we would be competing against the top fell runners, despite Andy reassuring me that all abilities ran.

Luckily by the time leg 4 started, the weather had improved, with the only murky bit being during the ridge run after Heron Pike. The route was varied, starting with some tarmac, hundreds of steps, a ridge run, some contouring and then a mud slide down ‘THAT hill’ as it seems to be known as on the fell runner’s Facebook page. Apparently the commentator had said just before leg 4 started that he’d never seen such a steep descent in a fell race – good job I’d not heard that!!

I was lulled into a false sense of security coming off Stone Arthur as the first bit wasn’t that steep or slippery and I even overtook someone. However, suddenly it turned in to a mud slide. Even trying to get into the bracken didn’t help! I slipped down three times, before a woman behind me suggested that the 3 of us just got down on our backsides and slide down! It was hilarious, with cries of “rock” echoing up the hillside! It seems that I need to add sledging to my training!!

Eventually it became grass again and I was able to run.

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Well done to all the Helsby teams – we did ourselves proud. Special thanks to Phil, Laura and anyone else who was involved in the organization.”

Loggerheads Trail 10 mile – Saturday 21st October 2018

A bit closer to home on Saturday, three of us completed the Loggerheads 10 mile race. A great route that does a couple of laps of the 5 mile option available on the same day. There was also canine race option on the same day. There was plenty of ups and downs in the race and its one of a few low key events now hosted Outfit around the Clwydians.

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Photo courtesy of SJ Photography

Helsby finishers: Jim Jones 9th, Steve Wiggins 49th and Roy Duffy 50th.

Clwydian Hills Fell Race – Sunday 21st October 2018

Well done Rebecca for the super personal best, year on year in this race, and thanks for sending in the report:

“The optimistically named App “Accuweather” forecast the weather to start raining at 11am (precisely the race start time) and to finish raining at around 2pm – after the race stopped. Luckily, this app doesn’t always live up to the promise its name suggests and the beautiful Clwydian Hills were almost sunny the whole time. Locals were dressed in shorts and vests complaining of the unseasonal heat (10C), but for me it was perfect tights and long sleeve top weather, nice and soft underfoot and not too muddy. 
Last year I was around 10 months into my running comeback (after a break of many years), and after a few recces I was very daunted by this race and relieved to finish it though I came next to last with a time of 2 hours 44 minutes. So this time round, it felt like a good measure to see what improvement I’ve made over a year. 
For a start, being able to keep up with the mid-pack helped considerably with the navigation (ie not needing to do any!) up until the half way point, after which I started to slip behind but from there I remembered the route from last year. The miles fell away, and whilst the whole thing was as gruelling as ever with 9 miles of pain and 2,700 feet of elevation, it didn’t feel quite as difficult as last time. Even the gully didn’t seem to take so long. Well in fact it didn’t – last year that mile segment took 36 minutes whereas this year it was a mere 27! Overall I shaved 25 minutes off my time from last year and came 87th out of 101 starters, which felt like good progress. 
As usual, the people manning the checkpoints, handing out the soup, organising the event were all lovely and jolly, and did a sterling job. I really love this race and look forward to being back next year, 
thanks
Rebecca (Mildred The Hen)”

 

Winter Hill Mast Race – Sunday 21st October 2018

Richard Hankins has been about doing interesting races again. Thanks for the report Richard and well done:

I like races that are relatively flat with good underfoot conditions, so the last couple ofScreen Shot 2018-10-24 at 21.03.17weekends have been ‘off piste’ for me. This week I only travelled as far as Lancashire to run the Winter Hill Mast Blast. The race was run to celebrate 50 years of Bolton Mountain Rescue Team which I was a member of from 1990 to 1999. I love the West
Pennine Moors and the opportunity to spend the day up there was too appealing to miss. I prepared perfectly, attending a Billy Bragg gig the night before, completely losing count of the number of beers I’d drunk and waking up horribly Screen Shot 2018-10-24 at 21.03.47hungover. Like any sensible runner faced by an exposed hill race who was unwell and unable to keep down their breakfast I took precautions (a second banana). The profile of the race was somewhat hellish. Starting with a steep 150M climb along a rocky and gravelly track followed by an ascent of the Pike only to then run down the other side of the hill before working your way back up to the summit. Then followed a couple of kilometres of open moorland. Rivington Moor is particularly soggy and at one point I sank to my knees and only just escaped with both running shoes. I haven’t run that moor for 20 years and I delighted in being back out there. The last part of the race was through the Terraced Gardens on very uneven cobbled paths. I think you’d have to define it as a multi-terrain as it mixed trails, with fields, open moorland and the utility road to the mast. The organisation was fab, it was well marked and marshalled throughout. Difficult underfoot and it is a race that would be easy to pick up an injury at (as a few poor folks did). I came 15th overall and third Vet 45. Hopefully, it’ll become an annual event: I’d love another crack at it.

Parkrun

Well one to Colin Bishop for his finish in 1st place at Phoenix, and everyone else who took part in a Parkrun on Saturday. Our consolidated club result are HERE

That’s more or less it for this week, but I just wanted to mention Chris Igoe for being such a stalwart of the Wednesday night runs and an avid reader of the weekly blog – Cheers Chris!

Happy Running,

Jim

 

Helsby weekly round-up 8th – 14th October 2018

Hello everyone

Welcome to this week’s round-up. Loads of ace reports have been sent in this week, thank you so much for these, makes our job so much easier! It’s great to see lots of new faces each week at training and at the Borders League on Sunday, hopefully you are all enjoying your time at Helsby RC!

Before we get to the news please see a flyer below for the Helsby Fireworks display on Friday 2nd November:

Firework Poster

Palma 10k

Bish and Jane flew over to sunny Palma at the weekend to take part in their annual 10k, a few other members and friends joined them and made a weekend of it, looked like a great laugh! read on for Bish’s report on the shenanigans…

“While many of the green army made a start on the Borders League some of us along with some ex Helsby club mates and a few Widnes Running club members followed the sun for the Palma 10k and half marathon. Don’t think there was any takers for the marathon. Apparently  there was over 10,000 runners across all 3 distances.

On a welcomed cloudy but very warm morning 26C we headed off from the start with lots of support from all nationalities.

Danielle Ryder headed off first for the half marathon, safe to say I think she welcomed all the shouts of encouragement from both the green army and the temporary green army members 😉 

The rest of us started the 10k glad to we completed the course maybe not in times we wanted. I am pleased to say I came in first for the team in 10th place retaining my V55 title for the third consecutive year.

Great to see Tanya Meredith there too.

Loud support from Chris Holden, Nicola Kozer and Jane Bishop 

Safe to sage the post race beers went down a treat 😎”

Team Helsby:

Colin Bishop
Ian Hamling
Rachael Holden
Danielle Ryder
Temporary Club Members 😉
Nikki Hamling
Will Kozer

Ullswater Trail Race

Richard Hankins is on a mission at the moment, he’s an ever present at the club counters / races and training nights and he slipped away to Ullswater at the weekend for the trail race! Nice result mate, please read on for his full report.

“As storm Callum passed I made my way to the Lake District to run the Ullswater Trail Race with a work colleague. A 14km route from Howtown to Glenridding facilitated by a ferry trip to the start. The roads were covered in gravel and stones from the previous days storm and the temperature had plunged to 8 degrees but looked ok for a trail run.

Upon arrival I found that Ullswater has risen sufficiently to stop all sailings and flood the car park of the cafe we were meeting in, and the car park of the ferry company. As a result an alternative wet weather route was in place. A quick internet search and it becomes apparent that the trail race route has not been run since 2014 with the alternative route used each year. The route started on the roads and then over a few rough fields before thumbnail_44106595_2190256894377730_4587895576099553280_oheading off onto the fells at the Patterdale end of the lake. There were a number of streams still running across the paths and a 15m stretch of ankle deep water within the first two miles. The route proceeded along the lake and then up onto Place Fell : a long and rocky ascent of approx 300m. This was followed by an immediate steep descent on a very wet and gravelly path that I found barely runable. The views were stunning but the route required careful attention to your feet and there was little time to enjoy it. The marshalling and general organisation was good and it is a race I wouldn’t mind doing again…especially if i actually got a ride on the steamer. Results haven’t been published yet, according to the website the ‘timing system is just drying out’!

Results are out, I finished 27th and my fellow runner Nick Barr 60th/292.

Hell Up North (Little Devils Fun Run)

Rebecca Tate has sent in two reports this week, great stuff Rebecca! First up is her take on Hell up North (Little Devils Fun Run) and the next one is her race at Anderton Boat Lift…

“Of course I wasn’t going to go swimming through mud for fun at the weekend, that’s not proper running! However I accompanied my daughter on the Little Devil’s fun run, which was two small laps of a bit of Eddisbury hill. The medal was fantastic. However the promised goody bag contained protein shake powder, a can of taurine/caffeine drink and a packet of men’s razor blades. I later emailed the organiser to ask who in their right mind thought that this was a good idea, and to suggest that if a balloon, a bit of chocolate and cheap pen would be too margin-busting then no goody bag at all would have been better, to avoid disappointment. In fairness, the organiser emailed back to admit it was his idea, and promise a little something in post to make up for the disappointment. I’m not sure whether to be excited or afraid.”

Anderton Boat Lift Half Marathon

“What a great venue! If you had people coming to support, or to mind children while you run or whatever, there’s plenty to look at with the boat lift, a nice cafe and lovely shop. There is loads of parking (pay and display, not a high charge – especially compared to £10 Delamere parking for Hell Up North!).

For people racing, there was a warm marquee with coffees, bag storage, and well organised race registration. Most astonishingly, there were no queues for the women’s toilets. It was chip timed, so no jostling at the start. If all this wasn’t enough already, there were 6 excellent drinks/food stations, with a choice of water or electrolyte drinks and jelly babies / jelly beans / flapjacks and other stuff that I didn’t notice because it was all about the jelly babies for me. If I wasn’t going for a sub-2-hour time I could have happily spent more time with the jelly babies.

But back to the race – it was 2 laps of a trail course that went through Marbury park, Neumann’s flashes and along the River Weaver. I’ve not done a laps race before, but this worked well and didn’t feel repetitive, with nice scenery and slightly undulating through the woods but otherwise flat, with the potential for fast times. Unfortunately the reason why lots of people smashed their PBs was because the course appears to have measured short, at around 12.5 miles!

The weather was chucking it down and quite cold, with a huge puddle that turned up a few miles from the end and there was no way round it so like any proper trail race we ended up splattered with mud with squelching shoes. That’s not the bit I remember though – the great organisation, venue, medal, marshalling and feed stations are what stick mostly in my mind. The medal is a picture of the boat lift which is awesome, and the goody back was full of nice snacks. There was a sports therapist on hand to offer free sessions which was a huge help for sorting out my recent piriformis issues.

Entries were limited to 500, but only 163 raced – this was the first time this event has been held but I hope it’s back again next year, with a course revision to make up the full distance. Despite glute and hamstring pain all the way round, I got in at 1 hour 52 and half, 21st woman home, and first out of the whole of Helsby Running Club (woohoo!) OK, in fact I was the only person from the whole of Helsby Running Club attending, but a win is a win 😉 Hopefully it won’t clash with other races next time and there’ll be loads of us there next year!”

Borders League #1 – New Brighton

Fitzy was a very happy bunny on Sunday, read on to find out why…

“One very happy Border’s League Coordinator (that’s my official title apparently).

What impressed me most about our Borders League team on Sunday was the amount of new faces that turned up. Yes I’ve been harassing you on social media for the past 2 months, yes I’ve been sending out loads of email reminders about our first race of the season, but everyone looked like they had a ball, and were enjoying being part of the green army. (once the pain of the race had subsided on an extremely fast course).

Job done if you ask me. That’s what it’s all about. Some people say it’s very elitist, but i disagree. Ian Rutherford pointed out his time was quicker than his last time he ran this course last year, but lost about 50 positions in the process. OK, the standard is very high right now, and it was the 2nd biggest turnout for a Borders League race, but for every 5 minute miler, there’s a 6, 7, 8, 9 ,10, 11, & 12 minute miler as well. This series of races caters for everyone.

I knew we would get a great turn out after doing our first Borders League taster session on the Thursday before the race, 16 of us turned up, in rotten weather, to run around an industrial estate in Runcorn. So i would like to thank each and everyone of you that turned up on Thursday and Sunday, and i’d like a shout out all the new members who raced their first Borders League race and i’m hoping you will all be back for many more.

Well done Nathan Woods, Kevin Smith, David Pearce, Florence Woodward-Moor, & Becky Pearce.

A couple of mentions for some great performances on the day. Hannah Cowley leading the way again, coming home 1st lady a whole minute ahead of her nearest challenger. Alison Halsall 1st in her age category, Christina Roch, 3rd in hers, Debbie Read doing what she does best and coming 1st in her age category. A great days running by Nathan, Kev and David, 3 of our newest members, and a shout out to the younger of the two Woodward-Moor’s, Flo making her debut beating Mum, which I believe she enjoyed a lot.

The ladies finished 3rd on the day, only 14 points off top spot. The men finished 6th with a decent score, but looking at other teams results, i think this year is going to be a really tough battle at the top, but loads more to come from the men I’m sure.

See you all in Upton on 11th Nov for the next one….9.30am start for that one”

http://www.bordersleague.org.uk/results/

Hellrunner up North – Delamere

Our hardy Chair Jackie showed them how’s it’s done, running Hell Runner with a fractured arm! Excellent running Jackie, and an age group win to boot! Read on for her full report…

“Well Fitzy has done this the last 9 years and chose chosen running buddy Peter to join him in the swamps this year. I did it 9 years ago & decided to give it a go before this sort of thing ceases to be fun any more!

Storm Callum shut Delamere to the public the previous day so the organisers did really well to put up the marquees & mark out the course, which covers every nook & cranny of Delamere there is on the west side of the B road. There was still the aftermath of the storm with gusting winds & rain in the morning. But there was so much to concentrate on and most was under the canopy of the trees, so the weather became insignificant compared to all the other natural forest elements! The sun did show it’s face for a short period in the afternoon. The really good news was that the air temperature was barmily warm for an October day which helped with the many immersed sections along the way; plus at the end that instant freezing, get me home & dry asap feeling didn’t happen. 

Chris & Peter were in the first earlier wave (the expensive one!) &  I was in the 3rd (“cheaper”) wave an hour or so later; might as well give it time to get tracked & even muddier. A fairly normal start up & down New Pale Heights & back past the start field to get warmed up. Then into the forest for a zig zag route, with very short spells on the wide tracks. Followed by dozens of sudden dodges to the side into the thick of the forest in search of obstacles; fallen trees, steep slippery banks, water slides, streams, bogs, swamps, drainage channels, & some very awkward sections through many of Delameres newly felled trees with all their jutting branches & trunks. The first major water feature was near Hatchmere, I don’t think it was part of Hatchmere but not far off it!  A recently flooded area that had been ploughed into furrowed lines. The route went along a long narrow muddy peaty ridge which you sank into up to your knees with deep water on each side. Several folks lost their shoes in this one & bravely continued having been unsuccessful in digging them out.  Another involved 400m across a lake of fairly open peaty water, with the bottom being ridged & full of the usual cut down trees; so you were at one stage balancing on a trunk or ridge with water upto your knees and the next stride out of depth so swimming was the best mode until you crunched into the next hidden obstacle. Chesire Search & Rescue did a brilliant job; balancing in wading wellies & full dry suits on exposed tree trunks in the middle of the water guiding & encouraging folks through, with a dinghy on standby for emergencies- surreal! The final famous Bog of Doom, I have to say was rather a disappointment and tame after all what had gone before, although the consistency was different to the rest, green & slimy smooth pea soup as as opposed to thick & brown lumpy gravy!.

I shouldn’t really have set off as I am still suffering from a fall leaving me with a weak left left arm due to a chipped elbow, but the thought of not getting my £37+ worth hurt me. I escaped from home to cries of ……, & instead took a walking stick which was really helpful all the way around. Also I went around very steadily & gently not really racing. It was still amazing how many folk I overtook though, having started off at the very back of wave 3. There was also a shorter version Valhalla which I got muddled up with along the way so good or bad there was company and queuing all the way around. 

Some moments of the day the really made me chuckle along the way & on reflection afterwards; it’s always best to laugh rather than cry!

– The worst thing about the water features was getting out as this usually involved getting up a high slippy bank which with one good arm was a problem. One guy behind could see I was struggling & offered to help, the next thing I was given a two handed bum lift onto the bank for which I thanked him perfusively!

– Another water feature was waist deep with lots of logs above water level. Some folks (including me) straddled them, others balanced along connecting ones. Suddenly a lady balancing alongside me started to wobble & I came to her rescue by giving her my stick which she was extremely grateful for!

– Being in the 3rd wave there were quite long queues entering the water features & some folks going slower than me were starting to feel the chill both in & out of the water. Following the 400m dip which was at 10+ miles, a lot of folks started cramping up all at the same time. Particularly the burley chaps (sorry to be sexist but these were the ones I noticed!). With the silence of the woods interspersed by loud shouts, cries & swearing of broken men! At this stage also, despair, exhaustion & frustration was setting in & they hurled themselves helplessly into the tricky parts hoping to get over quickly, only to find themselves stuck in deep mud with little energy to extract themselves. In the meantime I made my way following my survival plan of quiet, steady & gentle concentration through the surrounding turmoil! 

– Towards the end many runners realised how useful my stick seemed at keeping going so were seen snapping away in the woods making their own walking aid!

– With a couple of miles to go, having just crossed the switch back road back to the Visitor Centre side, there was loud music & lights & a dark marquee to run through. This had a lot of folks, including me, thinking what next, “a pitch dark tunnel section” but surprise surprise it was the last drinks station serving flap jack too!

– Chris & Peter sampled the fire brigade’s fundraising hospitality at the end & were hosed down by them. By the time I got in they had ran out of water so I wandered back to the car at Barnesbridge & had a wash & change in a hidden bit of a cleanish pool neat the carpark.

All in all a “fun” character building day our in our Delamere!

Chris & Peter came in in 2:09, I took nearly twice as long 3:50 but was chuffed to be first in my new age category!”

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Please find the consolidated parkrun results from the weekend, some fabulous running from the green army which included a first lady for Jenny Illidge at Phoenix! Superb Jenny and a big well done to everyone else who took part.

http://www.parkrun.com/results/consolidatedclub/?clubNum=1721

That’s all this week, thank you again for all the excellent reports, please keep them coming, the Helsby inbox is helsby-race-reports@outlook.com.

Keep on running…

Cheers
Col T

 

 

Weekly update 30-9 to 7-10

Firstly, a couple messages from Chris Fitz and Sue Buck

Fitzy:
Morning all, just a week to go before the Borders League season starts next Sunday. You all excited?
Race 1 is in New Brighton and it’s an out and back along the water front, 11am start, it’s free of charge, just turn up in your Helsby vest. Anyone wanting to race who doesn’t have a vest let me know, we can put you in contact with Sue Buck
There is also a Borders league taster session on Thursday 11th 6.30pm start from Tudor Road. WA7 1BD. We shall have 7,8,9 & 10 min pacers taking you around the 5 mile Norton 5 course. Would be great to see a fair few turn up to this
All details on the Borders league on the website below
http://www.bordersleague.org.uk

Sue:
I’m going to order some more hoodies as it seems winter is here. Unfortunately, the price has gone up, so the next lot will be £18.  Please let me Sue Buck know the size as well.

parkrun
Full results for Helsby members at last weeks parkruns are below, including a first place for Jenny Illidge at Phoenix Park

https://tinyurl.com/kvq2x25

Chester Marathon 2018 by Col Thompson

The last time I ran a marathon was in London 2013, over five years ago. At that particular time I was aiming for the coveted “sub 3” which I managed to get (just) and I swore I’d never do another one, the pain of that race is still etched into my mind to this day! I stuck to my guns on this until recently when Louise got sick and I wanted to do something to give back to the unit who cared for her last year.

I’d heard good things about the Chester Marathon, although not the flattest marathon around the organisation always gets great reviews and it’s right on our doorstep, so my place was duly booked and training started. I decided to follow a specific training plan this time from a book called “P&D Advanced Marathoning” I’ve never followed a plan before but seeing other runners I know successfully follow the plan and set themselves big PBs, it seemed like the logical thing to do.

So my 12 week training block started back in July and I had my ups and downs with it. We had one of the hottest summers on record so most of my training was done late at night, I also developed plantar fasciitis in the second week which I had to train through and I then hurt my achilles in the final week (on a treadmill in work for charity believe it or not!) but I managed to stick to the training sessions as best as I could and arrived on the start line relatively injury free. I think following an intense training plan with weekly mileage up to 70mpw was always going to be a challenge and I expected to pick up little niggles along the way.

So race day arrived, I had a target time of 2.45 in my mind but plan B was sub 2.50 if things didn’t go to plan as it would still be a big PB for me. I arrived at the race course and the weather was glorious, dry and sunny and cool with no wind, perfect! Chester race course was a great venue to host the start and finish, plenty of porta loos and everything was very easy to find, the organisation was top notch. I bumped into Spiderman AKA Gaz Boyd at one point who runs marathons for fun these days now he’s an ultra man! Great to see Gaz running well again. Race day nerves were starting to kick in and I did a short warm up and made my way over to the start line where I bumped into Fitzy who was pacing the sub 3 hour group, we shook hands and wished each other luck and then we were off…

The course takes you through Chester City centre, over the River Dee and out towards North Wales, then back to Chester with a finish at the race course. It was a nice route, gently undulating through country roads and it looped through some beautiful little villages where the locals came out to support which was nice to see. At the halfway mark everything was going to plan, I had stuck to the required pace and fuelling strategy I’d practiced in training (gel block and water every 4 miles) and was feeling great at this point, I breezed through at exactly 1.22.30. Things were pretty uneventful until I hit a hill at 16 miles and the pace dropped, I also started feeling some pain in my achilles which had been bothering me in the final week of training. After this point I just couldn’t maintain the required pace for target time and as the miles ticked by I could see the pace dropping further and further. Time for plan B! A quick mental calc and I realised if I could hang on I would still be in with a shout of sub 2.50, I then passed the 20 mile marker and I entered the dreaded final 6.2 miles! It doesn’t matter how much training you do, nothing can prepare you for those final 6 and a bit miles of hell in a marathon! It really becomes a mental and physical battle, I was desperately trying to keep the pace below 6.50 per mile and my achilles was getting worse and now the course was getting more hilly. I stopped looking at the watch and just concentrated on my gait and stride which I adjusted slightly and things settled down a little. 22, 23…then mile 24. I’d heard about the “huge hill” here and it didn’t disappoint, with 24 miles in the legs it felt like a mountain! It’s there that I heard a big cheer and someone shouting my name, I looked over and Gaz O’Connor and Helen Owens were at the top of the hill, I think I managed a small wave (sorry guys!) but it gave me the boost I needed and from there I managed to hang on in the last 2 miles and finish in 2:48:56, a ten minute PB! I was elated! My mum and Louise were there to greet me at the finish which was amazing!

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Fitzy managed to pace the sub 3 group perfectly finishing in just under 3 hours and we had some other fantastic results from the Green Army. Neil Finegan finished in 3:05:15 as he prepares for the Snowdonia Marathon and Spiderman finished in 3:54:51, well done mate. Ben Williams also had a strong run to finish in 4:12, not quite the sub 4 he was hoping for but I don’t think Chester is the best course to go for a PB and I’m sure he’ll achieve it on a flatter course.

So in summary it was one of my most memorable races, it’s always nice when you work hard for something with months of training and it pays off on race day. It also helps to have a very supportive and understanding partner, Louise has been my rock these last few months, even when I was nipping out at 10pm for a 20 mile run she never complained! The best result we got from the day was the amount of money we raised for CANtreat though, over £700! Thank you to all members who donated it really means a lot to us.

Will I do another one? If someone asked me that two days ago I’d have said double defo no, but now the pain has faded and I’ve analysed my race a bit more, I hear Manchester is one of the fastest courses in the UK…. ;-

Helsby RC weekly round-up from 24th to 30th September 2018

Hello Green Army

Message from Foz to start the news this week

Hi all
October has now arrived so it can only mean one thing mud. I know Fitzy is rallying the green army for the borders league. So now it’s time for the cross country troops to dust down the spikes.
Saturday 13th October is the start of the Liverpool and District XC at Arrowe park, please note there is a new start time of 11 am. This race is just turn up and run but I will be in touch for other races in this league that are pre entry.  The first borders league is the day before so make it a double header.
Sunday 28th October is the start of the north west XC at Clarke gardens Liverpool a 10am start.  All of these races are free to enter for all Helsby members who are First claim only and club vests must be worn.  So to all new members give XCa go and you will be hooked.
It would be great to see lots of green vests on the start line.
All XC fixtures can be found on the club’s race calendar.
Cheers
Paul
No race reports this week, so a quick one from me on the Multi Terrain Series that finished last Tuesday. It’s worthwhile to note as well that this might be the last time we see this race series, Steve Saunders is stepping down after 20 years of organising them. It’s a shame really as they are great value for money, and are very enjoyable races.
Full results for last Tuesday can be found here.
A big well done to Paul Frodsham, 2nd O60, Debbie Read 1st in her age cat, O60, and me 3rd O40
Not a race report but the captain sent this in from last Wednesday’s successful 10k time trial
A big thank you to everyone who attended the 10k time trial last Wednesday, we had a great turn out with 12 runners toeing the line and an excellent standard was set by everyone!
Congratulations to Fitzy who was first overall in 37:08 and Hannah who was second overall and first lady in 38:00. this is also a brand new female course record, great stuff Hannah!
A big thank you to Louise Spruce (timing & results), Jackie Keasley (timing & results), Joe Beswick (timing) and Mario Foschi (marshalling).
See you all at the end of October for the next time trial.
Cheers
Colin
Link to results here:
Well done to all Park run participants this weekend, consolidated results below
Please don’t forget we have our 1st Borders League race on 14th October, and I am organising a training run for all abilities, especially to new club members who haven’t done a race like this before……details below.

June has come up with a great idea of a little get together and training session for those thinking about or already planning to do the Borders League Race 1 on Sunday 14th October, or any of them over the course of the season. The main aim of this is for anyone who has not took part in a Borders league race before to come along to this session, as it will give you a good idea of what the courses are like, and what distance most races are (normally between 5-6 miles). This will be run around the Norton 5 route (Roy’s old training run).

We shall have pacers running the route at 7, 8, 9 & 10 minute miles. The majority is off road, but high viz vest’s are a must, and head torch (although not essential) would come in handy.

We shall meet on Thursday 11th October on Tudor Road, Manor Park, Runcorn WA7 1BD for 6.25pm, and start the run at 6.30pm prompt.

We really want people to understand that Borders league races are not elitist, they are for everyone at the club, and the good thing is they are free of charge. It would be great to see some new faces, and also some of the Helsby and Frodsham crew head over to sunny runny for the evening.

Any questions feel free to contact myself or June

That’s all folks

Cheers
Fitzy

Helsby RC weekly round-up from 17th to 23rd September 2018

Hi Everyone,

Welcome to another Helsby RC weekly round-up. Apologies for it being a bit late this week but I was busy in Devon. I’ve been doing a bit of running on Dartmoor while working down there. As it was my last week, I had a couple of farewell events to attend, including another Wednesday night of stunning views with pureTRAIL.uk

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Wednesday night run on Dartmoor with pureTRAIL.uk

If you are ever in the vicinity of Dartmoor on Wednesday evening I would recommend meeting up with these guys at 6.30pm. They update there website with a new meeting place each week. No charge, just turn up in suitable gear (including a head torch) and run some great trails with  Pure Trail Running

Upcoming Events:

A couple of worthwhile causes for mention this week

Fundraising for CANtreat

A message from Colin T: “As some of you are aware I’m running the Chester marathon on 7th October to raise money for CANtreat, a charity very close to my heart as this is the unit where Louise was treated for breast cancer last year. Just my way of giving something back after the amazing care they gave her. No pressure at all to donate but any amount will be very much appreciated.

The link is here should you wish to donate:
https://www.justgiving.com/Colin-Thompson25

Thanks
Col T”

Halton Haven Santa Dash

 11am Sunday 2nd December 2018, Victoria Park Widnes

Santa Dash 2017

Laura  has asked that the Halton Haven Santa Dash be mentioned, as this is one of the charities which we support though our 4 Villages Half Marathon. So if you are free on 2nd December why not consider a fun day out while supporting the Haven at the same time. Full details are available HERE

 

Racing News

Meerbrook 5k – Saturday 22nd September 2018

Thanks to Colin Thompson for sending this report in, and very well done peeps. Fantastic to see so many Helsby members running at county level :

“Myself, Fitzy and Hannah were all picked to run for Cheshire at the Meerbrook 15k on Saturday, that’s 3 Helsby runners out of a team of 7! Not bad for a little running club like ours. I’ll be honest I didn’t know much about this race beforehand and hadn’t researched the route or past results but it’s a unique distance and it was always going to be a PB. As we approached Meerbrook it became evident it wasn’t going to be a flat course either, in fact there is over 1000ft of climb, it was going to be very interesting!

We met up with the other Cheshire runners and after the usual pre-race banter and photos we were on the start line and off. What followed was one of the most undulating and difficult road races I’ve ever done, the hills were relentless with no flat bits anywhere, as you climbed and descended one hill another one would follow! Me, Fitzy and Jez Brown (Buckley) pretty much stuck together and were like cat and mouse, Jez pulled away from us after the half way mark and Fitzy got the edge on me after pulling out a superb final mile (4.58!) and we took 14th and 15th respectively, 2nd & 3rd Cheshire counter. A cracking race which I thoroughly enjoyed.

The star of the day was Hannah though, she was first lady by a country mile and third fastest female ever in a time of 1:00:05. To put that into perspective only two women have ever ran faster, Gemma Steel and Olivia Walwyn, both GB internationals. The scary thing is there is a lot more to come!

Results on the day, Cheshire men were 3rd out of 4 counties (North Wales, Staffordshire & Shropshire) and ladies team 2nd. A big well done to all who took part. I think this could be one for a road counter in future, a unique race with some challenging hills to offer something a bit different.

Cheshire results:
Men:
2nd Jonathan Smith 55:31 (Lymm)
14th Chris Fitzpatrick 59:00 (Helsby)
15th Colin Thompson 59:05 (Helsby)
16th Gaz Davies 59:11 (Warrington)
Ladies:
23rd Hannah Cowley 1:00:05 (1st lady)(Helsby)
44th Gemma Barnett 1:06:24 (Vale Royal)
61st Carol Bird 1:10:09 (1st age cat)(Biddulph)

Delamere Inter-club Relay Trail (DIRT)

Saturday 22nd September

Thanks Jackie Keasley for sending in the DIRT  results. A great victory for Helby’s mens and Ladies teams. There’s also a video link of the event below the table, courtesy of Delamere Spartan’s Dave Douglas:
Screen Shot 2018-09-29 at 09.17.07

Southport Seaside 10k – Sunday 23rd September

Thank-you Karen Horsley for sending in a report on the Southport Seaside 10k:

“Mid-week the forecast for Southport was wet, persistent all-day long rain, however on the day the sun was shining and we were treated to a warm run with a gentle breeze. Great conditions for running a PB on this, two lap, almost entirely flat course. If you haven’t run Southport before each 5k lap circles the marine lake, it’s a beautiful place to run.

Pre-race warm-up completed I determinedly told hubby and kids “sub-60 here I come!” Despite my anxiety around crowds I positioned myself between the 55 and 60 minute pacers and completed my first 5k in a little over 28 minutes, tiring a little at this point my pace slowed and I had to take a few short walk breaks but (as I said) I was determined to get sub-60 and picked my pace back up from the 8k mark, sprint (ish) to the finish and a definite sub-60!

Well done to Robert, first Helsby vest home in 42:52, also to Stephen and David Wiggins for their great times.

Helsby results:

Robert Hough 42:52

Stephen Wiggins 55:34

Karen Horsley 58:26

David Wiggins 01:02:52″

 

English Half Marathon, 10k and 5k –  14-16th September at Warrington

Karen also sent in our results from the English Half Marathon, 10k and 5k last weekend, Thanks Karen

Helsby results:

Half:

Neil Finegan 01:21:36

Gareth Boyd 01:45:19

10k:

Ian Hamling 40:45

John Rossiter 43:35

Rachel Holden 47:33

Matt Willcott 53:33

Karen Horsley 01:02:25

Gill Fitzpatrick 01:03:48

5k:

Phil Tomkinson 18:41

Matt Willcott 27:31″

Parkrun – Saturday 22nd September 2018

Well done to Colin Bishop for finishing 1st at Phoenix and to Rachel Holden who was first lady to finish at Widnes. Our consolidated  club results for all park runs on Saturday can be seen HERE

New Club Member

A warm welcome to Becky Pearce who has just joined us. Hope to be able say hello on one of our club runs soon Becky.

I think that’s if for this week. Please keep sending any contributions in to helsby-race-reports@outlook.com

Cheers,

Jim

Helsby weekly round up 3rd – 16th Sept 2018

Hello all

We have two weeks of reports for the price of one this week, bargain! Thank you so much for all the brilliant reports, makes our job so much easier and thank you to some of our newer members who have taken the time to write one.

Lots to report this week so lets get started…

Firstly a big warm welcome to new member Kevin Smith who joined us last Friday, we hope you enjoy your time at Helsby RC!

We have Bingo night tomorrow night at the club house (21st September), please see the flyer below for details…

20180823_064750

Border Training Session

June has come up with a great idea of a little get together and training session for those thinking about or already planning to do the Borders League Race 1 on Sunday 14th October, or any of them over the course of the season. The main aim of this is for anyone who has not took part in a Borders league race before to come along to this session, as it will give you a good idea of what the courses are like, and what distance most races are (normally between 5-6 miles). This will be run around the Norton 5 route (Roy’s old training run).

We shall have pacers running the route at 7, 8, 9 & 10 minute miles. The majority is off road, but high viz vest’s are a must, and head torch (although not essential) would come in handy.

We shall meet on Thursday 11th October on Tudor Road, Manor Park, Runcorn WA7 1BD for 6.25pm, and start the run at 6.30pm prompt.

We really want people to understand that Borders league races are not elitist, they are for everyone at the club, and the good thing is they are free of charge. It would be great to see some new faces, and also some of the Helsby and Frodsham crew head over to sunny runny for the evening.

Any questions feel free to contact myself or June

Cheers
Fitzy

North West Counties Road Relays 

Delamere, Saturday 8th September 

Report by Karen Horsley

On Saturday I had the dubious pleasure of running for my club in the North West Counties Road Relays, it was wet.  Very, very wet.  I was the anchor leg of the ladies B-team, which meant I was standing around in the rain for over an hour before I had to run.  The race was two laps of the mere (lake) on forest paths, so not a true road race.  Running last was hard because the field had spread out, so I was effectively running the race on my own.

I put in a reasonable first lap, with the rain streaming down my face and my feet squelching in my shoes, and buoyed on by cheers and encouragement from my club mates I began the second lap.  I was doing well (as well as I could anyway) but then the first wave of dizziness washed across my brain – this is something that happens quite often when I run – at which point I started putting in small walk breaks and kept going.  More dizziness, more walking.  And then ‘Sue’ overtook me, I have no idea who Sue was but I was determined she wasn’t going to beat me, so upping my pace a little I soon took back my place and carried on up a small incline and round a bend…

It was then I almost blacked out.  Big wave of dizziness, blurry/dark vision.  I was suddenly very unsteady on my feet and was reaching out for something to grab hold of, with memories of my previous concussion worryingly ringing alarm bells in my mind.  Fortunately, there were marshals on hand to guide me to the side and give me a drink of water, they said maybe I should walk to the finish line, I said that I’d be fine doing a slow-ish run and off I went accompanied by ‘a minder’ – actually a lovely lady from my club who had witnessed my wobble.

Finished the race in around 37 minutes and dizzily wobbled over to the club’s men who were still waiting to race, they looked after me very nicely, giving me something to eat and holding me up while I pulled some dry joggers over my dripping wet leggings.  Still feeling a little dizzy and, now that I wasn’t running, so very cold.  I weaved my way to the car park where hubby picked me up and I could thankfully remove my saturated shoes and socks.

Fast forward to 7pm and news that the results were online… and that ladies B-team had been recorded as incomplete.

So not only did I spend 2.5 hours in the pouring rain.
Almost blackout.
And still valiantly make it across the finish line.

But due to some administrative error my time hadn’t been recorded.

Guess who’s not very happy?

I’m hoping this can be rectified but for now I’ll simply say that every single person who ran today was a true hero!

For the club, both ladies’ and men’s A-teams came 6th for Cheshire.

Lake Vyrnwy Half Marathon

Report by Richard Hankins

In the brochure that comes with your number it says: ‘This race is an old fashioned kind of event, and these days is quite unique – it does not have a major sponsor and it is organised by real people volunteering their own time for the good of their community. Please do not expect a ‘Great North’ or similar type of commercial event. If you can understand the homemade-ness of this event you’ll have a great time!’ Presumably then, the GNR is organised by unreal people? Anyway, I think what they are saying is it won’t be a slick event….and it isn’t. The start is particularly chaotic – the start line was not clear and the pack had assembled across it. They had no speaker system and trying to get 1500 people to move backwards concurrently was a challenge. It also led to a lot of runners being out of place.

Once you’re away, however, the stress of arriving and getting started are soon forgotten. It’s an excellent natural course, uphill to the dam for the first mile and then following the shores of the lake to mile 12, with a fast descent to the finish. It is scenic, predominantly flat and well surfaced. The roads aren’t closed, but a one way (anti-clockwise) system operates. This isn’t ideal and prevents you taking the shorter route at times. I set off aiming for 6:30 miles with a dream of finishing in 1:25. I kept these up for 8 miles and then started to struggle dropping to 6:45 for the rest of the race and coming in at 1:26:50 – a new PB, although only seven second under my time last year. Col T was also there using the event as part of his prep for the Chester Marathon, he came in at 1:20:47.

It is a fantastic course and I’d say it is well worth the drive and minor irritations of the event. If you’re looking for a PB, the profile is perfect with downhill just where you need it. It’s my second year, I’d be surprised if I don’t go again next year.

Multi-Terrain Race 1 – Royden Park

Report by Fitzy

If you haven’t done these races before they are a must. £1 entry, 4-5 miles of of grass, trail, tarmac, sand, and mud, hence the name. Every Tuesday through September, although by the time you have read this the second one would have been and gone.

Low numbers turning up on this one, the men just managing to get a team out with 5, and the ladies only 2, incurring penalty points, we need 5 men 3 ladies. Unfortunately for Laura Sayer-Hill she turned her ankle on the course and DNF. I know she made a good recovery though so that’s the main thing.

Adam, as per usual storming around the course in an impressive 18th place followed by me, and Peter, and Vanessa coming in just ahead of Debbie for the ladies. Good to see you back racing again Vanessa.

Full results below

http://www.stevesaunders.co.uk/mt/2018/mtrace1_18.pdf

Guilden Sutton 10k 

Report by Geoff Collins

This year 14 Helsby Runners took part in the Guilden Sutton 10k on Sunday 16th Sept.  Formally known as the Sutton 6 this is the new name West Cheshire Running Club are calling it.  Also a club counter for us. It’s basically two small circuits round the village of Guilden Sutton passing my house and a longer loop continuing past the Chester Rugby Club down the A51 and returning back up Wicker Lane.  Annoyingly there is a little hill right at the end of the race.  It’s a fantastic good value race put on by a local running club with just 246 finishers this year.  Low numbers mainly because of the other races going on nearby.  I was also supporting our young friend Amy Batchelor running her first 10k.

Chris Fitzpatrick 35:24
Adam Gordon 36:48
P Tomkinson 36:50
H Cowley 36:58  1st lady
P Rodrequez 39:25
J Higgins 43:19
R Hough 44:08
R Gaskill 46:21
G Collins 50:06
S Woodward More 51:29
(A Batchelor 52:35 1st F U20)
C Igoe 53:55
S Wiggins 57:09
J Gallon 1:00
J Shaw 1:05

There were some outstanding performances and very quick times.  Fitzy and Adam getting PB’s, possibly Phil too, Hannah 1st lady finisher well done Hannah very close to our first three finishers!  I wonder if that’s why they got their PB’s!

Three Shires Fell Race

Report by Tim Palmer

I was the only Green Army runner in last Saturday (15th)’s Three Shires Race in the Lake District. Three Shires is one of the shortest of Long category Lakeland fell race (distance: 20km / 12.4miles climb: 1220m / 4003ft). Conditions looked good at the start as you were able to see the summits and there was even some sunshine; however early in the race, the weather settled into low cloud on the fells ensuring everyone had to navigate. It is certainly a race for those who like hills – the first main climb onto Weatherlam is a mile at 1 in 3; this is followed by three more major climbs. I finished 167th out of 233 in 3:18:46. The top three finished in under 2hrs with 1st and 2nd being decided in the final 100 metres. It is good race in a lovely setting – also the Three Shires Inn where the race starts and finishes is very welcoming.

Multi-Terrain Race 2 – New Brighton

Report by Fitzy

A much bigger turnout for Race 2 of the Multi Terrain last Tuesday, seen us head over to the beech at New Brighton. After Royden Park’s Forrest and hills, this week it was all about it being flat and sand, and lots of it. I was quite surprised just how hard the sand actually was, it was more like a road race, perfect for me. The top order did see some familiar road running faces at the front of the pack as well.

Before the race had started, I could see this little green dot in the distance, legging it to the start line, it just so happened to be Geoff Collins, arriving just as the hooter went off, and poor Geoff had 300 plus runners heading towards him, whilst he tried to join the back of the race. The first mile was a sprint down the beech, through a few puddles, and back along the tarmac next to the beech, which then took you into the local country park, next to Wallasey golf course. Up and down a few tiny hills, and back out onto the beech for just over a mile sprint finish. It was a short one, just over 4 miles but great fun indeed. It’s a pity it was cloudy as apparently the sunset there is great.

I was home 1st, followed by Adam and Peter, and for the ladies Laura Sayer-Hall was back 1st, Debbie 2nd and Helen Owens back racing again was 3rd.

Race 3 is at Wirral Country Park, followed by Race 4 at Arrowe Park.

Full results on Steve’s website.

http://www.stevesaunders.co.uk/

King John’s Castle Fell Race, Llanarmon-Yn-Ial, a hilly 5 miles-ish

Report by Janet Robertson

We were lucky enough to have a perfect day for this race. The organiser reminded us not forget to look at the views before he set us off and I am glad he did as it is a stunning area. Cracking runs from all the Helsby runners. A big well done to Jane who was 2nd lady and 1st V40. Great scenery, friendly people, a lovely pub, free chip butties, and I came away with enough fruit and veg winnings for some fruity fell race art fun … all for only £5. What is there not to love?

Ras Cyrn y Brain

Report by Laura B-H

6 Green vests made the trip to Ponderosa on 2nd September for Ras Cyrn y Brain, our 10th Fell race counter.  This race has only been going a few years, but there was a reasonable turn out and it was the last in the WFRA’s north wales series. Starting by the Ponderosa café we took a steady climb up to the telephone tower, down the other side through the top of Llandeglla forest, and back around for another climb up to the tower and back down to the finish. A very runnable course and nice mix of terrain. Good showing for Helsby with Adam finishing 6thth overall and 1st V40. Great to see Chris H out on the fells and thanks as always to Joe and Mario for support on the course.

6 ADAM GORDON 00:52:05
16 BENJAMIN CROSSLEY 00:58:43
25 JIM JONES 01:01:10
31 LAURA B-HUGHES 01:02:34
55 PHIL GILLARD 01:09:04
60 PAUL CUNNINGHAM 01:10:30
74  CHRIS HATTON 01:18:50

parkrun

Please find the consolidated results for HRC at the weekly parkruns. A big well done to all member who took part in one and extra kudos to our Bish for a superb win at Phoenix Park, well done mate!

That’s all folks, thanks again for the reports, it’s great to see everyone running so well. All reports are to be sent to the HRC inbox – helsby-race-reports@outlook.com.

Thanks
Colin T

Helsby RC weekly round-up from 27th August to 2nd September 2018

Hello Green Army

Quick message from Jackie about the road relays and inter club relays.

This Saturday, 8th it’s the Norrthern West Counties Road Relay Championships in Delamere Forest. We have 2 ladies & 2 mens teams entered. Good luck to all taking part.  

Then a couple of weeks later it’s the  

DELAMERE INTER CLUB RELAY TRAIL (DIRT) – Sat 22nd Sept

  • Time of first leg – 16:00
  • Location – the big expanse of grass near Delamere visitors centre
  • The event will be an interclub relay between ourselves, Delamere Spartans, Spectrum Striders, Pensby and Tattenhall
  • All legs will be within the forest with no road crossings
    • Leg 1 – single runner, 5K – set course
    • Leg 2 – pairs, 8K – set course
    • Leg 3- pairs, 9K – route choice
    • Leg  – single, 5K – set course
  • Categories will be Male, Female, Male vet, Female vet and mixed
  • The cost will be £2.50 per runner to cover the fee we are being charged by the Forestry Commission, including parking in the carpark close to the start of the Park Run where the concerts are held.   All entries on day.
  • Club vests need to be worn

The ethos of the event is low key and social, so we will put up gazebos and encourage runners to bring family and food for a picnic afterwards – no BBQs!

If you have not already done so please email Phil if you would like to take part (phil.gillard1@btinternet.com) and be matched into teams.
Or if you have already made up a team great & just turn up & enter on day but if you let us know you are a team already it will help us ensure we have enough team battens on the day!
Helsby Running Club are helping orgainsie legs 1 (Railway Slalom) & 4 (Park Run) by putting out the signs & marshalling.
I could do with 3 more course marshals + a couple of timing marshals kso if you now anyone or are not running but would like to join in then please let me know.jackiekeasley@btinternet.com 

This is a trial event (to possibly take the place of the interclub fell counters) and it would be great to see a healthy Green Army turnout to support this new event.

Cheers
Jackie

Ben Williams has sent in a report for the Firelighter

Just a short report from the Firelighter ultra on Anglesey, on Friday 31st August. This is the first day of the famous Ring O’Fire which for the second year was available as an ultra in its own right. The route follows the Anglesey Coastal Path around the western and northern coast, from Holyhead to Amlwch. The weather was perfect, almost too hot and it was quite a relief when sunset neared and things cooled down.
After a slow start caused by congestion on the narrow paths leaving the start area, I soon settled down to a slow plod, reassured that everyone around me was doing the same thing. There are three checkpoints, and the course gets progressively tougher after each one, the most difficult section being around Cemaes Bay. The checkpoints are a long way apart so I was lucky in having support from Serena and Dad who kept me supplied with water. Otherwise I would have struggled in the heat. A particular highlight was stopping for a rest on the clifftop near Ynys Y Fydlyn and seeing dolphins playing in the sea.
I finished in darkness, about 15 minutes up on last year’s time. Results are at https://ringofire.niftyentries.com/Results/Ring-O-Fire-2018?
Well done Ben, that first day is the best day on ROF, but probably one of the hardest as well. 
No more running reports i’m afraid….. that’s all folks!!! Hold on a minute, just found a Triathlon report i can throw in. Over to errrrrr me……
Sundowner 70.3

OK OK OK, it’s not just about run reports, others get away with sending in Swim Run reports, walking reports and they still get into the blog with no issues or moans, plus i’m doing the blog this week so here’s my take on my first 70.3 Middle Distance Triathlon. (Gaz will be deleting this right now i think).

Myself and Peter Rodriguez decided that if we ever grow a pair and want to do a full iron man, then we need to do a half iron man firstly, to dip our toes in the water a little before entering the biggy. Obviously you need to train for 3 disciplines, however, it’s pretty hard trying to fit them all into a 7 day week. Running, no problem, swimming, no problem, especially over the summer we’ve just had, but biking has been particularly hard, it takes up so much time, and neither of us have particularly enjoyed it.

A 70.3 triathlon consists of a 1.2 mile swim, 56 mile bike, and a 13.1 mile run. We found the flattest race possible, no hills even in the water!!! We traveled up to Allerthorpe Lake, just outside of York last Saturday and set up camp. It was a great setting, the weather was superb and we just wanted it to all be over quickly so we could get into the after party tent, whilst watching the sun go down. It’s a midday start but myself and Peter put a realistic time down when entering, and found ourselves going off with the last wave and the fast guys. This was a mistake. The start of the swim was horrible, I actually thought i was being drowned, and was certainly not prepared for the amount of times i would be hit by someone, or barged out of the way, Peter even shouting at people under water, which made me laugh. 3 laps of the lake and we came out in a respectable 44 mins, both of us within 5-6 seconds of each other, straight into transition 1, chuck on all the bike gear and out onto the super flat and lovely roads for 2 laps of a 28 mile course.

Most of our training rides we have been averaging around 17.5-18mph, so it was good to see us both averaging 19.5mph for the full 56 miles, and seeing us make a little bit of ground up on some seriously expensive bikes, some people spend more on their bikes than they do on their cars. My back was not in a good place for the first 28 miles but as then pain went from my back into my thighs i got through it in 2hrs 55 with Peter coming in a few minutes ahead in around 2hrs 52.

Back into transition 2, throw your running shoes on, and out onto a multi terrain course for the first mile or so, then heading back out onto the roads for 3 laps of about 4 and a bit miles for the half marathon route. This was particular hard now, i thought i’d easy get in under 1hr 30, but after 56 miles on the bike your legs just don’t work, however with running being my strongest discipline, i overtook a lot competitors to come out with the 4th fastest time on the day for the half marathon, in 1hr 35, followed by Peter in 1hr 41.

I finished in 104th in 5hrs 20, Peter finished in 125th in 5hrs 26, out of about 500 starters. Both of us very pleased with our first 70.3, and the after party was pretty good as well. If anyone fancied doing this distance then this would be highly recommended, it was a superb event and looking back it really was a great weekend, once the pain had subsided.

Now, do we or do we not book the full iron man………….

104th 532 CHRIS Fitzpatrick M 92nd M 40-44 17th 05:20:33 +01:12:02
125th 535 Peter Rodriguez M 110th M 40-44 21st 05:26:58 +01:18:27

https://www.stuweb.co.uk/race/1QF

↑ top ©2018 Stuweb Race Management Services, StuWeb, 26 Cradley Road, Cradley Heath, B64 6AG ©2018 Stuweb Race Management Services, StuWeb, 26 Cradley Road, Cradley Heath, B64 6AG

CheersFitzy

Parkrun seen runners out and about in Pheonix, Warrington, Catterick, Chester, Delamere, Keswick, Ellesmere Port, Northwich and Street.
Full consolidated results below;
Last word from me, Christmas Party, Friday 30th November, or Friday 7th December? Drop me an email or message on Facebook, we shall go with the most popular option
See you all soon
Fitzy 

Helsby RC weekly round-up from 20th to 26th August 2018

Hi Everyone,

Welcome to another Helsby RC weekly round-up.

Upcoming Events

Borders League and Cross Country Fixtures – Tim Palmer has recently updated the calendar to include all these fixtures which are free to enter for club members. Just turn up on the day in your club vest and run. You can view the calendar HERE

Request for Assistance – Next, we have a request for assistance at two County Events. Please let Jackie Keasley know if you are able to assist with either of the events in the email pasted below:

“Dear Cheshire Officials

I would be grateful if you let me know if you are available to assist at two endurance events being held in Cheshire this autumn. 

“The first is the North West Counties Road Relays, which is being held at Delamere Forest on Saturday 8th September 2018, first race at 10.10am. The North West Road Relays were due to be hosted by Greater Manchester this year, but they were unable to provide a suitable venue so Cheshire has stepped in at the last minute to ensure the event goes ahead. There are more details on the attached prospectus. We am looking for officials to help at the start, finish and take-overs. Please let me know as soon as possible if are available.

Secondly, the Cheshire Schools Athletic Association is hosting the Dave Sunderland Inter County Schools Cross Country event on Saturday 8th December 2018 at Knights Grange, Winsford. This annual event will involve teams from up to 10 counties. Cheshire County AA have agreed to assist Cheshire Schools at this event and again we are looking for officials to work at the start and finish. Please let me know if you are available. 

Finally, please note that the Cheshire County Cross Country Championships are being held at Birchwood on Saturday 5th January 2019. I will be in touch again nearer the time to ask for availkabilities for this event.

Regards
Alan Morris
Cheshire County Officials’ Secretary”

Helsby Sports Club Event – Betty Grieve has sent in a reminder of an opportunity to support Helsby Sports Club and have a good night out on Friday 7th September:

giggle shack

 

Racing News

The Race Across Scotland – Saturday 18th August 2018

Our first report this week is from Gareth Boyd about his amazing crossing of Scotland. Thanks for sending in the report Gareth – and well done mate! I thought the crossing of Dartmoor was epic (see below) but you’ve trumped me 😉

IMG_3260

“The Race Across Scotland – commenced 6.10am 18th Aug. It covers the breadth of Scotland on terrain best used for sheep grazing and hiding bodies 

The route covers at least 212 miles and over 29,000 feet. It’s far more scenic than the Transpennine Trail but for at least 70% of the course, terribly terribly boggy/wet 

Originally there were 200 entrants, of which 130 made it to the start line. 68 runners had to retire during the event, leaving 62 who finished within the 100 hours time limit.

I finished in 90 hours 58 mins. Position 38.

It was great to finish another 200 mile + race but I’m disappointed that I walked much of the course. 

The winning time was 65.03

Worth noticing that Delamere Spartans own Becky Wightman had a superb race and finished joint 2nd lady” 

 

The Crossing of Dartmoor – Saturday 25th August 2018

IMG_5177
Those of you who view my Strava feed will have noticed I’ve been running on Dartmoor quite a bit over this summer. While working in the area I have been meeting up with a group of off-road runners each Wednesday night at a different location somewhere on Dartmoor for a 6ish mile run. The Wednesday night runs are hosted by puretrail.uk and are free for anybody to attend. Just check their website on the Wednesday morning for that day’s meeting point and turn up in suitable off-road gear at 6.30pm. So if you are anywhere near Dartmoor I would highly recommend looking them up.
Puretrail also organise a lot of off-road races in the southwest region. On Saturday I completed The Crossing of Dartmoor – a 34 mile race from the picturesque village of Belstone at the northern edge of Dartmoor to South Brent on the southern edge of the national park. After a heavy downpour on the Friday it was pretty boggy underfoot but we were blessed with a window of good weather all day Saturday. Had the weather closed in, as it often does on Dartmoor, it would have been a completely different kind of race. As it turned out we had pretty good running conditions and a chance to take in the views, which included lots of Dartmoor ponies along the way. We had an unfortunate encounter with a hornets nest at mile 32 and I was stung on the back of the head! It hurt a lot! Other than that, it was a fantastic day out. I finished the race 32nd of 86 in 7hrs 1min.
Puretrail have a Facebook page dedicated to the weekly Wednesday night runs.

 

Barrow Summer Saunter Half Marathon – Sunday 26th August 2018

Most people train for a half marathon but Colin Thompson just throws half marathons into his training plan! Well done Colin on a  great run, and thanks for sending in the report:

“I’m currently into the 7th week of the P&D marathon training plan and some of the quality training runs are long runs at marathon pace. Sunday was due to be the longest and final one of the plan, 18 miles with 12 at MP and rather than run around a deserted industrial estate on my own like I’d done with the previous runs I thought I’d find a local half marathon so I’d have some company and it’s always easier running fast in race conditions. Local half marathons on the date were pretty thin on the ground but one which stood out was a fairly low key race in Barrow in Furness, a race series called “Summer Saunter” which comprised a 5k, 10k, HM and marathon on a lapped coastal course all on the same day. Perfect! We decided to make a weekend of it so B&B was booked and off we went.

On race day the weather was pretty horrendous, there were strong winds and heavy rain, not ideal for a fast run! We arrived a little late so I didn’t have time to warm up so my plan was to run the first mile “easy” and then pick up the pace and run the final 12 miles at the required pace. Looking around I was surprised how few had turned out, there were 50 runner max, the weather must have put off a few people!

The race started and I stuck to the plan, ran the first mile easy then settled into a fast but controlled pace, after the third mile I noticed I’d worked my way into second place and was gaining on the race leader, a local runner who was doing the 10k. This is where things started to go a bit wrong. I hadn’t planned to lead the race at all and didn’t want to overtake him as the course was a bit confusing, I didn’t know the area and there were no marshals anywhere, only a few signs and bits of tape. I didn’t want to get lost so I decided to track him thinking I’d run the first lap with him and then I’d know the route for the second lap, he was doing a good pace so seemed like a sensible move. Foolishly I stopped taking any notice of the signs too! As we approached mile 4 he stopped and threw his hands up and announced that we’d gone wrong somewhere, we’d actually ran a mile past a “turn here” sign so by the time we’d figured this out and tracked back we had ran 2 miles the wrong way and lost a load of time! It’s ok I thought it’s just a training run so I tried to settle back into the required pace but I was really battling the elements, then the course went into fell mode and meandered over some steep slag banks, trail, wooden steps and a twisty slippery dock. I decided at that point to forget about pace and just concentrate on running a good race and see if I could maybe catch the leaders on the second lap. Unfortunately first place was just too far ahead but I did manage to get second place somehow, not bad considering I’d lost so much time!

It was a shame it went wrong, I probably would have been upset if I was properly racing it and lost out on a win due to a navigation error, they should at least have had a marshall at the turn around point as the sign wasn’t very clear. The guy who was running the 10k was very upset and actually demanded his money back! I was a little more diplomatic and explained that for future events they should have more marshals out on course but this race series is in it’s infancy so hopefully they will address this for future events. On a nicer sunnier day it would be a good little event to have a go at if you are in the area, just remember to read the signs!

Cheers
Col T”

Ras y Cnicht – Sunday 26th August 2018

It was great to see Adam Gordon’s name in the results of yet another fell race over the weekend. In a very respectable finish position too! Nice work Adam!

FB_IMG_1535403082446

“A short report on a very short race!
A weekend camping in Beddgellert with the family gave me the perfect opportunity to take on the 9th fell counter of the year. A bit of research promised a short race of just over 6km and 560m of ascent, steep rocky terrain, a scramble to the summit and some of the best views in Snowdonia. It was not to be!
The weather was awful. Strong winds and torrential driving rain meant that it was considered too dangerous to race to the top, so the race was cut short and we were turned around before the final scramble to the summit.  There would have no views to be had anyway. The weather also meant that only about half the usual number of runners turned up, and I was the only Helsby vest (hidden under my waterproofs) on the start line. I wouldn’t have been there either if I hadn’t been staying so close.
The race itself was an exercise in getting up and down without doing myself and injury. I made it to the top in 4th place but lost a few places on the way down because I just wasn’t brave or mad enough to let go on the wet, rocky slopes.
In the end, I managed to stay on my feet and hang on for 7th place. All good fun but I’m glad I hadn’t made the 4 hour round trip for it.  If the race had been on Saturday? which was a beautiful day, it would have been a cracker!
Full result HERE
Cheers
Adam”

Parkrun – Saturday 25th August 2018

Well done to Chris Fitzpatrick and Peter Rodriguez who finished 1st and 2nd respectively at Phoenix on Saturday. Our consolidated club results for all parkruns on Saturday can be seen HERE

 

That’s it for this week folks. If I’ve missed anything please let me know and I’ll update the blog.

Cheers,

Jim