Results for the Green Green Grass of Home are now available on the Welsh Fell Runners website.
A brief report from Martin, results and some outstanding photographs all available from the following link
This race was our 7th club counter and it is great to see so many Helsby runners turning out for the fells this year, which has definitely built on the enthusiasm shown from last year. Certainly the race on this particular night could have been called the Green Green of Helsby with 17 vests on display from the 90 taking part and 87 finishers.
I have to agree with Andy Robinson that the GGGH is the best of the three races in the Clwydian series (the others being Hotfoot and the Druid) as the route is varied but tough and always somehow slightly different each year, whether purposefully or not!
Runners meander from the registration at the Golden Lion nr Llangynhafal to the start of the race (also the start of the Llangynhafal Loop race earlier in the year) and wait patiently and possibly nervously till Martin stands tall and describes the route, setting us up for the first short steep climb up the green grass which quickly hits a fairly wide stony track, seemingly innocuous but with enough incline and distance to separate the field early on, which then presses us on to a crossroads at the Offas Dyke path.
About three-quarters of the way up that first path we see head past Alistair Tye taking photographs (bonus points available if anyone could smile at this point) we then encounter Joe marshalling and supporting, where runners then contour round the side of Moel Famau before heading to the atmospheric summit, clouded in mist where Huw, the apparition in yellow, sent us back down the Offa’s Dyke path to again be deviated away from runnable trail to bracken, heather and fern, ‘where even the sheep don’t tread’ as Steve Riley has written previously. A final and stiff climb soon beckons where Helsby’s Chris Hatton positioned himself for photographs. Look forward to seeing those! Fun but energy sapping downhill, seeing Joe and his yellow marshals flag in the distance, trying not to face plant again as your foot mysteriously disappears into a boggy trap, runners then hit the same stony trail from the start of the race, turning left into the ferns before the splendid short and sharp descent and cheers from the more sensible watchers and a group of children doing Mexican waves means you have finished a race and an accomplishment.
But really that’s just the start of the night as prize giving is an entertainment show all in itself.
(It should also be noted that Martin mentioned runners should check for ticks, especially after the wet weather, so always worth remembering to do that when you have been out in the fells.)
Some great runs and battles on the night with standout performance once again going to Jayne who was first lady by a good margin and also beating talented local runner and last year’s winner Lisa Grantham.
Helsby have now also been contacted by Easyjet as they want some consultation by Jayne to teach their pilots how to do a perfect take-off and landing. Photo evidence below. Brilliant.
Helsby ladies stole the spotlight with Jackie showing her class in winning her age category convincingly, holding off other runners at the finish. Jim O’Hara is on good form and great to see Adrian pick up a prize of a horn too. (Martin said it was because he’d heard about Adrian’s sprint performances at track and thought Adrian could use it as a warning to other runners as he tears round the track on his 200m relays). Best prize of the night surely the scouse earring collected by Jayne, it almost looks like a hula-hoop.
Helsby position and places as follows
|64th||Tom de Jong||62.03|
Many thanks to all who turned up for such a great night and hopefully this green ocean can continue onto Whittle Pike, the next club counter and also Race 2 in our Inter-Club Fell running series. Whittle Pike is the Spectrum nominated race on Wednesday 8th August. Details courtesy of Spectrum are below. It should be about an hour’s drive from Helsby and I will send some more details and a reminder out a few days before the race.