Hopefully everyone has had an enjoyable Christmas, eating well and spending time with family, plus opening up presents to find that new pair of fantastic fell shoes!
It’s been a busy period, envelopes now completed for the Helsby Half and still lots of races to keep us active over what is normally a restful period.
It was a brilliant turnout for Robbie’s funeral, standing room only at Alvanley Church with lots of stories and familiar faces at the club afterwards. A sad day but I think his family can take lots of pride in knowing how popular Robbie was and how well he was thought of by so many people.
Sunday 31st December was our Penultimate Northwest XC race at Stadt Moers, which I’d now say is my favourite XC course on the calendar. Undulating and winding and muddy in parts but all very runnable and the short distances to each curve and bend kept you on your toes chasing the people in front. Luckily(?) we couldn’t actually feel our toes after being asked to start the race in a very cold puddle!
Fantastic course too for spectators and what strong support with Colin Bishop and Jane, Jenny’s parents, Steph and Mick, Wayne Percival and Mario and Joe all offering lots of encouragement to the Helsby contingent, importantly keeping us informed of how we were doing in each of our individual races.
Great turnout for Helsby, eight men and the commanding ladies team of six, who performed spectacularly once again. In total 102 men ran and 39 women. Helsby had three ladies in the top six to secure the team prize on the day, and by all accounts means they have maximum points and should hold the trophy for one more year. I think all who watched the race will know how well everyone ran and with nearly a full house for sandwiches and drinks (and awesome mince pies!!) afterwards the enthusiasm was clear for everyone. This already bodes well for next season in this league.
Helsby positions and places
1st Jayne Joy
4th Jenny Illidge
6th Jane Ashbrook
11th Janet Robertson
27th Jackie Keasley
28th Lesley Feakes
5th Adair Broughton
46th Colin Thompson
59th Steve Riley
62nd Roy Gaskill
74th Dave Feakes
76th Adrian Jackson
86th Tom DeJong
90th Andy Smith
If you want full results they are available from Steve Saunders website, who had to drive home and miss his own race as he’d forgotten the runners envelopes. Sterling effort for doing that Steve.
For added affect we have some great photography from Mick Charman and Dave Pinnington. Links below if you like colour with your weekly round-up.
Photographs from Mick
Photographs from Dave
(Dave will keep adding photos so keep coming back for a few days)
It was also the fast Ribble Valley 10k on Sunday too, and John Thompson was out showing off the Helsby vest
Full results above but well done to John for 817th in 52.44 and with over a thousand runners in that one.
Earlier in the week on Boxing day there were two other races that I know of, the Goshawk run and the Round the Walls. I’ve had no information or results from Goshawk so if anyone knows of any please forward and I’ll update the blog.
Round the Walls was unable to utilise the flooded racecourse so a shortened race of just over 3 miles with 425 runners in total, with quite a few in fancy dress. A little mulled wine and mince pie help to make the effort worthwhile.
20th Adair Broughton 18.14
52nd Jayne Joy 19.59 (6th lady)
115th Geoff Shaw 22.26
256th Jackie Keasley 26.10 (2nd in age cat)
309th Janet Shaw 27.44 (2nd in age cat)
I will now start compiling a list of races and once the Helsby half is out the way we will begin looking at the road and fell counters for 2013 so start having a think and letting me know of your favourite races as we do like to add in races that people can recommend.
Hope I’ve not missed anything and I have a feeling 2013 will be another great year with Helsby still attracting new runners and building a strong foundation for future success.
If anyone is interested there is a Charity run on New Years Day starting from Thornton Hough village at 11.30 and a straight run to Willaston. It’s about 3 and a bit miles, fairly low key but a good burn-out if you fancy it. I normally park at the Pollards Inn CH64 2TU at about 10.45 and run to Thornton Hough as a warm up taking £5 for the charity bucket with me. The race will finish at the Pollards and there is a charity raffle and prize giving a short time after. Everyone obviously welcome. Alternatively you can park at Thornton Hough then run back as your warm-down.
A map of the run here.