Green green grass of home fell counter results 27th july 2011

Hi all

‘The Green Green Grass of Home’, sounds like a pleasant evening run over the gentle rolling fields of Wales stated new fell runner Jayne before having a go at this popular midweek Moel Famau escapade.

Full commendation also goes to new Helsby member Adrian who only popped to the club to see if there was a vest for him and ended up being driven to his first fell race. Some people do jump right in! And what a night he had too heading home with a bottle of wine.

And how about this comment from Ed recently on our blog ‘There’s nothing more spiritually fulfilling than tanking it downhill only to have to turn around and trudge back up to the path you should have been on’.

So it wasn’t all plain sailing, there’s not much give in the course, running uphill, undulating paths, little time to enjoy the views, lots of ferns, tussocky undergrowth…..and some good downhills! But the one thing that was not lacking on the night were the smiles. Check this one out, looks like someone isn’t working hard enough! Good spot by Phil

Alistair took some great photos on the night, Joe mentioned the hazy golden sunset over Snowdonia as he marshalled and supported just below the summit of Moel Famau. After finishing the race, heartbeat slowing down, the warm evening air cooling down, you can really soak up the atmosphere of this location.

As well as Alistairs site, Pete Douglas was out taking photos and video also which should appear here shortly

However, star of the show and the night and now dominating the welsh fell runners website is Andy Smith wearing the Number 50 proudly signifying that he is now 18 years old with 32 years of experience. Race organiser had also brought along with him a cake for Andy and organised a fell running sing-a-long outside the Golden Lion. Great summary by Martin the race organiser on that site here. Full results will appear in time also.

Stunning performances on the night by all Helsby runners, which bodes well for our possible Helsby v Tattenhall v Spectrum Fell Challenge next year if it comes off. Jane was 5th lady overall and Jackie and Janet were age category winners, superb. (But Jane always appears to pick alcohol as her prize?) …. then again I guess the skateboarding gnome had already been taken. Albert showed his perpetual talent, an engine more powerful than his motorbikes that can push him to win on any terrain.

But there was some sad news, Paul Porter didn’t win a spot prize! However, looks like his luck rubbed off on Colin who picks up a technical training top instead.

123 runners in total, 15 of them Helsby, it’s a good number of Green shirts out on the fells this year and great to see. Thanks also to Mario who ran the course with Jayne. Helsby positions and places as below:

14th Adair Broughton 44.51
18th Jim O’Hara 46.21
38th Jane Ashbrook 54.19
44th Paul Porter 54.56
49th Phil Gillard 55.23
50th Janet Robertson 55.31
60th Edward Halliwell 56.13
73rd Jayne Joy 57.39
79th Albert Berry 58.49
85th Andy Smith 59.42
87th Colin Scarisbrook 60.52
89th Rachel Arnold 61.09
93rd Adrian Jackson 61.43
99th Jackie Keasley 64.03
119th Robbie Webster 74.01

It’s the Gyrn Gallop on Saturday but the Wednesday following the Pie and Peas will see the Ponderosa, another popular event for Helsby hitting the fells, so details to follow on that one



Joss Naylor Challenge

He’s done it! Andy Robinson writes:

Joss Naylor Lakeland Challenge, 22 July 2011

This was the run I’d been training for since the beginning of January. It was why I’ve been running reps up and down Frodsham Hill, and why I’ve been running longer events than usual all year. My first attempt at the end of May was battered into failure by driving rain, and I didn’t really know what to expect this time: the weather had been awful for days, but the forecast was for gradual improvement with showers and cloud. And I really didn’t know whether I was up to the task even if the weather was good. But yesterday it all went right. My target was 15 hours, and I got under this by over an hour, finishing at Joss Naylor’s house in Wasdale 13 hours 56 minutes after leaving Pooley Bridge.

Living legend Andy Robinson, Joss Naylor, lives in The Lakes

For those of you who don’t know, the JNLC is a challenge run set by Joss Naylor for the more mature runner. Men over 50 must complete in 12 hours, over 55s have 15 hours, over 60s 18 hours, and over 65s have 24 hours. Women get a bit longer. It’s not the sort of challenge most over 50s would have on their ‘must do’ list, as you would expect from a challenge devised by Joss. It’s the equivalent of about 2/3 of a Bob Graham round, being around 45 miles long, with 17,000 feet of climbing. It crosses the tops of 30 fells, including High Street, Fairfield, Bowfell, Great End, Great Gable and Pillar, finishing with a great runnable descent off Middle Fell to end at Greendale Bridge by Joss Naylor’s farmhouse. To qualify for an invitation to the October dinner to be presented with a tankard your run must be witnessed by pacers, and you must collect at least £100 in sponsorship money for charity. I’ll be coming after you all for the money you promised once I’m back from my family holiday (Wed 17 August I should think).

The alarm went off at 4am in the bunkhouse in Glenridding, and Chris and I got ready to go, mainly involving eating and a brew. 15 minutes’ driving and we were parking up at Pooley Bridge, and at 5 on the dot we headed off up the fells to run the ridge south to High Street. It was so different this time – no rain no wind in our faces, and we could actually see the fells. And no sign of the promised showers, in fact I was running in shorts and t-shirt all day. At the end of the ridge we faced the steep pull up Stony Cove Pike, then raced down to Kirkstone Pass arriving 15 minutes up on schedule. There was no sign of the promised reception party (which would have been a brief ‘well done’ and a handshake as we ran past), so we started on the path up Red Screes, shortly hearing a shout from the car park – he’d missed us as we were early. We shouted back, but that’s all – we had to press on, up the steep side of Red Screes. Easier running followed, up to Hart Crag and then Fairfield, the only two tops we crossed in cloud. At about this time Joss Naylor was tending to sheep in Middle Fell and got drenched by a heavy shower, but we didn’t get a drop. Down the scree path then steeply up Seat Sandal and a good run down and we were at Dunmail Raise, meeting up with Julian, Bryan, and Bryan’s dog Holly. I was 25 minutes up on schedule by this time, but starting to feel pretty tired.

No stopping, and Bryan led up the hardest climb of all, desperately steep up Steel Fell. Our routefinding wasn’t perfect from here to High Raise, but we only lost a few minutes, then down to Stake Pass, Rossett Pike and the Bob Graham route up Bowfell. I was feeling pretty rough on this section, and Bryan had to coax me along. I recovered well on the easy section to Esk Pike and Great End, and we scampered down the steep descent to Sty Head, arriving 30 minutes up. Peter was waiting for us there. Again no stopping, and it was straight up the tourist route to Great Gable, a steep unrelenting climb, but I was feeling quite good and kept up a good pace, hands on my knees at times. This was familiar ground, and at last I started to believe I was going to finish. It had been hard work hanging on to that for a while. At Beck Head we were unexpectedly met by Chris and Julian, who had walked up from Wasdale, and Julian joined us for the rest of the way. Kirk Fell was OK, and on the top we caught up Peter’s wife Sheila and Alan, who were out recce-ing the route themselves, bring the party up to 6. The long pull up Pillar wasn’t too bad, as I’d done it not long before and knew what to expect. Easy ground followed to Scoat Fell and Steeple, and the run down towards Haycock is always good. I started feeling the strain again on the steep pull up Haycock though, and didn’t speak much from then on. I could hardly eat and even sips of water were hard to swallow. The descent from Haycock is on grass so that wasn’t too bad, then we crossed the boggy depression to the foot of Seatallan, getting our feet wet for the first time. I doubt anyone’s ever got across there in running shoes without getting wet feet. The steep climb up Seatallan I was dreading after my experience recceing, but I plodded up, and it wasn’t so bad. I suppose it was because I was so close to the end and half in dreamland. At the top someone said “if you can keep going you might get under 14 hours”, so we belted down the side of Seatallan, up Middle Fell and down to Greendale Bridge, beating 14 hours by just 4 minutes. My pacers were great: I’d have really struggled to finish without them. As it was, we finished in style, racing down the hillside.

I lay down on the grass and closed my eyes, so grateful at being able to stop at last. Then “the big man’s coming”, so I got up, to be welcomed by Joss Naylor. Chris took a couple of photos, and we chatted to a while, then Joss went off to bring me back a pint mug of tea – no tea ever went down better. Half an hour more standing around talking, then we headed off home to collapse. This was the hardest run I’ve ever done, and a tremendous outing. I won’t forget it for a long time.

Pie and peas 5 course change

For those that may not have received this email or have not yet entered the Pie and Peas, a notification that only 60 places are left (as of 22nd July) and that there will a course change for this year
To all entrants of the Pie & Peas 5
The usual Pie & Peas route is unavailable this year due to work being carried out by CWAC on the River Weaver towpath just south of Vale Royal Locks.
Therefore for this year only there will be a revised route – visit the Club Website ( for a detailed map.
The Start and Finish points are unchanged and there is still a section along the River Weaver so you won’t be missing out on any of the hills!
However there is a sting in the tail!! In order to maintain the race distance of exactly 5 miles, runners must complete a lap of the playing field before crossing the finish line.
Also note we have extended the closing date for entries to the 1st August (30th July for postal entries). There are currently approximately 60 places left.
Please reply to this email if you have any further queries.
Steve Collier
Pie & Peas Event Secretary


20% off evening, Up and Running

Up and Running in Liverpool have been in touch with news of a discount and promotions evening for club runners only (they’re at 28 Bold Street, Tel: 0151 707 6676)…

We are opening late on the evening of Thursday 28th July until 8pm and would like to invite you and your members to come down and take advantage of a 20% discount off all full priced items in store *exclusively for club runners*.

Joints and Points Healthcare will be in offering FREE sports massage and injury advice. As well as this we also have a rep from Science in Sport coming down with FREE nutrition samples (gels, hydration etc.) for everyone, draws for a free energy pack (worth £11) and of course any nutrition advice.

We hope this is useful to you and hope to see you here next Thursday.

Burtonwood 5 mile results 16th july 2011

Please find attached full results for the 8th Helsby Road Counter of the season, the Burtonwood 5mile, Saturday 16th July 2011

Managing to dodge the rain but still fighting hard against the wind were the following:

16th         Adair Broughton                29.28
64th         Geoff  Shaw                       35.33
71st         Carol Shaw                        37.40
98th         Janet Shaw                        43.07

Thanks also to Joe for supporting on the course and for Mick Charman taking photos on the day. One of Mick’s photos attached.

Afterwards we were treated to the fun run which included a beer drinking Dracula being carried in a coffin.

Please note the next Road Counter is the popular Pie and Peas event which is a 5mile Multi-terrain race organised by Vale Royal on Wednesday 3rd August. This event does generally fill up. Details here:



Druid fell counter results 13th july 2011

The Druid.

A record turnout for Helsby with 19 Helsby vests participating in this Clywydian Wednesday night jaunt, race two in this particular north Wales series and race eight of our club counters.

So how do we look at this race? The blue sky with only the slightest wisp of cloud, the rolling green hills and welsh livestock chewing the cud, the cooling breeze, the people out supporting a wonderful spectacle of human endeavour, the brilliant vista from the top of Foel Fenli…….or do we think of the blood (Albert), the sweat (undoubtedly all of us) and the beers.

It was quite fantastic to see so many of us out enjoying this race (well, maybe after it had finished anyway) and I bet Joe has a sore throat today what with all the cheering he had to do! Thanks also to the support from Bill and to Mario offering his talent and advice.

As Martin mentions in his report, there was lots of competition throughout the race, with two Helsby in the top ten and some awesome category performances. Ian Landucci took home a bird hotel for his garden for 1st place with Jackie also showing her stunning fell form to win 1st lady in her category.

Paul Porter maintains his 100% prize winning streak for each fell race he completes with a spot prize of five pair of socks (what are your lottery numbers Paul? His last fell race win was a pair of shorts. Maybe some Innov8’s next?), Andy Smith had his choice of prizes and plumped for the hat but Robbie loses out on a voucher for some sweets by pipping Vanessa at the post who scooped that particular prize.

Great running also from Colin and Jayne in what were I think their first foray onto the fells. Great stuff

If you want to add any comments about your particular races or thoughts then please take a look at the blog and the forum, link on the right > (still awaiting lots of you to join in!) and add them, it’s always great to hear peoples thoughts after a race.

There was a team photograph taken too so keep an eye on the blog for that one to appear here soon….

Full results and short report from Martin now available on the welsh fell runners site

Helsby positions and places as follows:

7th Adair Broughton 35.34
10th Chris Baynham-Hughes 37.21
25th Ian Landucci 39.27
34th Edward Halliwell 41.36
38th Colin Scarisbrick 42.00
46th Jane Ashbrook 42.49
49th Steve Riley 43.42
53rd Paul Porter 44.01
55th Phil Gillard 44.14
56th Andy Robinson 44.21
63rd Janet Robertson 45.28
65th Albert Berry 45.33
75th Andy Smith 46.36
80th Rachel Arnold 47.44
81st Jayne Joy 47.51
99th Jackie Keasley 49.45
113th Carol Shaw 54.56
122nd Robbie Webster 60.06
123rd Vanessa Griffiths 60.07

Please note the next fell counter is the third race in the North Wales series, the Green Green Grass of Home  is on Wednesday night 27th July 2011 @  7.30pm at Llangynhafal, the Golden Lion Pub (the dark side of Moel Famau) Details will be on the website.

So if you have yet to do a fell race, or fancy trying out the hill legs again please have a think about this one. Will be great to see so many out of for Helsby again.



Forest park 5k results 6th july 2011

Results are already out for the ladies only 5k held Wednesday 06th July, Forest Park, Birchwood

With a high standard of runners, partly due to this race being part of the Cheshire Grand Prix series, and on what was a drizzly night some great performances in the green vest
which saw all Helsby runners comfortably in the first half of the field and with the overall team position of 6th from 21 teams so well done all.

Results are still to be updated online

Positions and times of Helsby runners as follows

21st         Jayne Joy                           21.43

26th         Vanessa Griffiths             22.06

28th         Carol Shaw                       22.19

48th         Frances Wood                  24.03

Thanks to Joe and Mario who were out supporting on the night

Details regarding the CheshireGP can be found at

2011/12 borders league dates

Some early dates for your diaries, next winter’s borders league dates and venues:
16/09 Prestatyn
13/11 Wallasey
11/12 Tattenhall
08/01 Abergele
26/02 Wrexham Tri
11/03 Helsby
25/04 Deestriders (presentation evening).

You’ll note we’re hosting the March event. Start making those sandwiches!

Happy birthday Phil!

I’m sure he won’t mind us mentioning it, but club stalwart Phil Gillard is now Officially Old.

Choosing to celebrate his move up into a new V50 category with a run out at Hathersage last night, old age clearly seems to be working well for him. Phil’s had a good year so far and a steady improvement in his times, ticking off a fair few fell races along the way.

The club’s present to Phil was the Hathersage Gala fell race in the counter series. 7 vests made it over to the beautiful gritstone high peak, somewhat further afield than our normal outings, and were rewarded with a 4.5m loop with just over 1000′ of climbing. A warm evening and a big turnout, mostly runnable terrain with a couple of short scrambly sections over the back of Higgar Tor (a special place for your author!). Jim made hay with a fast start to avoid most of the queues at the early stiles, caused by the big field, to lead the Helsby charge. A fit local population, along with the catchment of the outdoorsy capital of the UK (Sheffield) meant it was a pretty high standard race with many great performances from talented unattached runners, as well as the regular Peak clubs, and a good dose of people just giving it a go.

A record turnout on the night for the 4.5mile (BS) race with 243 runners in total, 7 of them with the Helsby green vest led by a commanding performance by Jim O’Hara but with strong runs all round.

Full results available here, although I’m not sure why there appears to be no v70 category!

Helsby runners positions and times as below
37 Jim O’Hara 36.44
65 Ian Landucci 38.55
123 Steve Riley 43.07
127 Phil Gillard 43.22
187 Andy Smith 48.01
224 Jackie Keasley 53.33
239 Robbie Webster 58.26

Well done to everyone taking part. Creditable mention for a decent run from Jackie, straight off the back of a tough two days in the Lakes for the SLMM.

Steve (with a prompt from Adair)

…hopefully some pics to follow from Bill and Helen.