Hesby Christmas round-up

Hi all

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.

Jayne dominates again

Jayne dominates again

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.




Helsby weekly news

Hi all

Not sure how many races there were this last weekend but as always, if I’ve missed anything please let me know.

Chris ‘Dragon Slayer’ Baynham-Hughes was participating in another tough, long distance challenge at the weekend, which wasn’t doing four laps of the Cheshire Oaks Christmas Shopping but the 38 mile‘Tour of Helvellyn’ in the Lake District. Brilliant result for Chris too, well done.

Some details here http://www.nav4.co.uk/events/tour-de-helvellyn-2012/

And results (209 entered, 148 started, 128 finished)


And utilising a Steve Rileyesque Twitter report Chris writes “#TdH Cold, Wet, Not race fit, didn’t manage food, struggled. Great day – 8h 15m 36th/148”

And some cracking photos here http://www.flickr.com/photos/stustod/sets/72157632316764623/

Just a reminder but the success of our Helsby Half Marathon is due to the help that many members of Helsby Running Club provide before the actual event. This year is no exception and for those who are able to spare a few hours on Saturday 29th December we’ll be organising out the envelopes that afternoon starting from about 1.30 – 2pm in the club house. Prior to this we’ll be doing a recce of the half marathon route starting at 11am from the club, with some from Spectrum and Delamere Spartans possibly running too. Why not pop along to one or two of those events.

However, we also have our 4th Northwest XC League event the following day. This is a new venue for this league and will be at Stadt Moers Park (Postcode L35 3RG), organised by Knowsley and with a start time of 10.00am. The event is free, just bring along your club vest. Free coffee and sandwiches a short distance away following the event (no details on this particular venue at present.

It’s Robbies funeral on Friday 28th and there is a possibility of a remembrance run at 9.00am that morning. Andy Smith will forward further details but it will be the summer run route starting at the club. Should be plenty of time to get home and changed before the service. As a reminder of the details

The funeral is at 1.30 in Alvanley church (opposite White Lion Pub) on Friday December 28th.

The get together afterwards is at BICC club.

Finally, thanks to Betty for bringing to our attention the Cheshire Sports Awards. Information below, so if you feel Helsby is a great club and want to nominate them, by all means do! Similarly you may think Joe’s consistent support and coaching is worthy of recognition or Chris Baynham-Hughes brilliant Dragons back, or the success of Jayne Joy in her first year of running, or Andy Smiths tireless work in organising the Helsby Half maybe for the Special Recognition Award as some examples. Have a think, some details below if interested.


We are pleased to announce that nominations are now open for the Cheshire West and Chester Sports Awards.

Residents can nominate individuals and clubs in the following categories:

Nomination forms can be downloaded by using the links to the right of each category above.

Alternatively, you can contact the Sport Cheshire team on 01606 330 212 or at support@sportcheshire.org

Please note that the deadline for nominations in all categories has been extended to 12 noon on Friday, 18 January 2013.

Hope everyone has an enjoyable Christmas and that 2013 is another great year for Helsby Running Club building on our growing success of 2012


Christmas Handicap 2012

Good to see a mix of old and new faces brave a damp and dismal evening for a bit of traditional pre-Christmas fun. Thanks to helpers Albert, Chris and Rachel with our Olympic torchbearer, Joe, turning the runners round at the half way point. Thanks also to David & Lesley for coordinating such a sumptuous feast for us in the club house and to everyone who brought along culinary contributions for us all to enjoy.

Handicap winner was Tom DeJong with a storming run. Times and places as follows :

Position Finish Time Handicap Running Time
1 Tom DeJong 27:35 04:30 23:05 (9)
2 Mike Searle 28:32 04:15 24:17 (16)
3 Chris Igoe 28:40 02:30 26:10 (20)
4 Helen Owens 29:14 05:00 24:14 (15)
5 Colin Bishop 29:30 10:00 19:30 (1)
6 Janet Robertson 29:35 04:45 24:50 (19)
7 Jenny Illidge 29:40 07:00 22:40 (5)
8 Gareth Boyd 29:46 08:45 21:01 (2)
9 Andy Robinson 29:50 05:30 24:20 (17)
10 Jim Higgins 30:00 07:00 23:00 (8)
11 Geoff Shaw 30:13 06:15 23:58 (14)
12 Adrian Jackson 30:24 07:15 23:09 (11)
13 Roy Duffy 30:26 07:30 22:56 (7)
14 John Gallon 30:29 01:30 28:59 (26)
15 Mike McShane 30:31 00:00 30:31 (28)
16 Jackie Keasley 30:32 03:30 27:02 (22)
17 Davis Feakes 30:38 07:15 23:23 (13)
18 Jane Ashbrook 30:43 07:30 23:13 (12)
19 Dave Madders 30:45 06:15 24:30 (18)
20 Colin Thompson 30:48 09:15 21:33 (4)
21 Lesley Feakes 30:50 04:15 26:35 (21)
22 Roy Gaskill 31:06 08:00 23:06 (10)
23 Chris BH 31:21 10:00 21:21 (3)
24 Betty Grieve 31:28 01:15 30:13 (27)
25 Jayne Joy 31:32 08:45 22:47 (6)
26 Chris Ashbrook 32:17 04:00 28:17 (25)
27 Laura BH 33:15 05:30 27:45 (24)
28 Ben Williams 34:00 06:30 27:30 (23)

Enjoy your Christmas and hope you can fit some running in between the festivities


Robbie Webster

Hi all

Obviously it’s with great sadness that I send out this weekend’s results as there is a notable name missing from the results. Last year Robbie Webster was either first or second v70 in each Border League race and even this year was still running in the hills, often seen at a fell race or bounding over Helsby in the daytime.

Below is a profile of Robbie that Joe and Mario have given me as many of the new runners may not have known Robbie plus more long term members might like to look at too, as it covers many of Robbies best times. It will be nice to add some comments to this blog article if you get the chance and maybe share some memories or wish your best to his family

Profile – Robbie Webster                                         Robbie at Hathersage 2011

Robbie didn’t start running till he was 31 but achieved a sub 3 hour marathon and 35 minute ten k among other accomplishments as well as some great battles at races in the club against the likes of Andy Todd.

I know many of you will have your own memories to cherish and I for one will be thankful that I got to spend a little time with Robbie at races and see him enjoying the hills, especially him tackling Cadar Idris earlier this year and the banter he had with Jimmy at each of the fell races was brilliant to behold. Being in the hills walking was something he did with a lot of his spare time and I know many of you will feel the same loss. If you get a moment next time you are in a fell race, have a think of Robbie and a look round when you reach a summit and remember we should make the most of all the time we get and let’s never forget what value a person’s spirit can give even when they are enjoying a separate journey, or a race that they can now enjoy by taking an eternity to complete.

I speak on behalf of everyone I am sure that this is a sad loss for Helsby Running Club but also we should be thankful Robbie enjoyed many years at Helsby in some grand times, such as driving the team mini-bus and being part of the big racing adventure on many weekends.

For those who wish to go to his funeral the details are below. If you need any more information please contact Mario as he has been brilliant in looking after Robbie these last few months and is in communication with Robbie’s family

Robbies funeral arrangements.

The Service and Burial will be 1.30 in Alvanley church (opposite White Lion Pub) on Friday December 28th.

Family flowers only have been requested and Donations to the Intensive Care Unit at ‘The Royal Liverpool Hospital’ would be welcomed and greatly appreciated.

The get together afterwards is at BICC club.

The address for condolence cards is,

c/o Vicky Sims
Honeysuckle Cottage,
Nr Craven Arms,


Border league Sunday 16th December

Before the race started on Sunday John Driscoll spoke about Robbie Webster and we had a minute’s silence, a great gesture from the race organisor.


It was a good turnout for Helsby with 21 runners wearing the Green. Blue sky and little wind made for ideal running conditions but the 9.3km course still had its surprises with a good 2k on multi-terrain path rather than road. It was Impossible to run without finding a puddle but still fun nonetheless. Fantastic support as always from Joe and Mario and Colin’s wife Jane and Jenny’s parents and Sharon from Tattenhall (have to add this as I know she reads our blog!)


Colin, never ceasing to surprise was 1st in his age category and maybe only one race away from being 1st in for Helsby…..but we also had Albert back on form for another 1st in his age category. Jenny was 1st lady home. Special mention to Carol who also with a podium finish even full of cold.


This has helped to steady Helsby ladies in the 1st division and seen a jump in the mens teams rankings too. Great stuff everyone!




Results for Helsby runners below:


27th       Adair Broughton            33.59
28th       Colin Bishop                 34.04    (1st in age category)
88th       Jim O’Hara                    37.01
97th       Ian Landucci                  37.24
98th       Ed Halliwell                   37.26
137th     Dave Feakes                 39.42
149th     Roy Gaskill                   40.09
162nd     Adrian Jackson             40.39
164th     Jim Higgins                   40.45
196th     Jenny Illidge                  40.50
176th     Albert Berry                   41.15 (1st in age category)
179th     Vanessa Griffiths          41.26
189th     Carol Shaw                   41.49 (3rd in age category)
208th     Geoff Shaw                  42.58
228th     Tom deJong                 44.15
231st     Andy Smith                   44.56
233rd     Mike Searle                   45.15
234th     Lesley Feakes               45.25
252nd     Sally Parkinson           46.48
254th     Graham Lloyd               46.56
294th     Betty Grieve                  52.52


Next Borders is Sunday 13th January, a nice warm-up before the Helsby Half, 11.00am at Birkenhead Park, details will be sent out nearer the time.


Look forward to see everyone at the Handicap and Joe and the Olympic helpers tomorrow night.


Please also note there is now a short break on Monday night training at Castle Park to begin again Monday 14th January.


Remember to let me know if you are interested in running in the Cheshire Champs XC on 5th January. Will need age category ,name, DOB and address if so.






Helsby weekend round-up 8th-9th December 2012

Hi all

Many thanks to Dave and Lesley for keeping us up to date with upcoming events for the club and one thing I’d like to add is that for the Christmas handicap on 19th December we will be honoured to have our Olympic Torchbearer and Olympic helpers out in their Olympic kits so remember to bring your cameras while we have them all together.

Sorry for delay in round-up email but I’ve been waiting for some results that are yet to appear.

Shortly after Christmas on the 5th and 6th of January we have two XC Races. The Sunday race on the 6th is our Northwest league which many of you are familiar with but the race on the Saturday, should you be fit enough or crazy enough to do both is the Cheshire Championships. I’ll need to send off details of anyone who wants to run on the Saturday as soon as possible so if you do want to race in the Cheshire Champs please send me your interest with Name, Age Category, 1st line of Address with Postcode and Date of Birth before 19th of December. This will allow some time for postal delivery of our runners over the Christmas period.

Now for last weekend’s round-up

Stadt Moers Liverpool and District Cross Country saw two Helsby vests out, the indomitable and indefatigable duo of Steve Riley and Andy Smith in a race of 111 out in total. Steve’s apt and succinct race report below

“Course report: dirt, water, corners, climbs, descents, some phlegm. 3 laps. In short, perfect”

Hopefully Steve and Andy will be able to give us some good advice on this course as it will be the same location as the Northwest League XC race on Sunday 30th December. More details will follow on that nearer the event. Well done to Steve and Andy, 1st and 2nd club counter positions.

Full results for Saturday’s L&D XC here:


72nd     Steve Riley                 43.11
100th    Andy Smith                 50.56

Really Wild Boar Fell Race was also on Saturday, a Howgill classic with added full winter conditions. Some details here


Adair and Jayne ran (or more correctly trudged through snowdrifts) this with a superb 3rd lady from Jayne behind two England Internationals.

Sunday saw a splash of Santa Dash in Runcorn with some excellent results for Helsby runners in the red vest and the white beard.

Some details here but no results anywhere as yet


News from the frontline was an estimated 500 Santa’s out, with Roy heading home in 4th and Adrian just behind in 5th. Dave and Lesley Feakes were also spotted alongside another mystery runner for Helsby. Well done to everyone taking part in that race, and for charity too which is great to see. I’ll endeavour to update the blog as soon as results appear online.

Also on Sunday was the Stockport 10. Some information from the organiser’s here:


and also full results here: http://www.chiptiming.co.uk/pdf/Stockport10.pdf

We also have a good report from Ivan on this: “4 Helsby vests out for the Stockport10 on Sunday. For those unfamiliar with this race, it is superbly organised by Stockport harriers with the added bonus of starting and finishing on their excellent running track. The race got underway shortly after 10am as their “Joe” carried the Olympic torch around the track to the tune chariots of fire’ playing on the speaker system. This was really well received by the runners and perhaps something we could look at for the 4 villages?

It’s a challenging 10mile course with some muddy off road sections and two tough climbs at 5 and 8 miles. It’s a shame it clashed with other events as this is a really good race that attracts some top runners. See the results for what must have been a superb finish as the first 3 home were separated by only 3 seconds. Incidentally, Andi Jones who came 3rd was/is a top GB distance runner, the fact two beat him is a measure of the quality of the athletes this race attracts. Special mention to Gareth Boyd who stormed home in 1.07.13 for a new 10 mile PB, taking 5 mins or so off a previous best.”  

Helsby results as follows

91st      Gareth Boyd               1.07.19 (New PB)
127th    Ivan Davies                 1.09.01
320th    Dave Madders           1.17.56
331st    Helen Owens              1.18.25

Well done everyone at Stockport. 

It’s the 3rd Border League race this Sunday at 11.00am, directions here, location is Christleton. The distance will be roughly 10k


Due to the extreme conditions and limited parking, race organisers have requested car sharing as much as possible. It might be worth asking round at the club tonight to see if anyone lives local to you.

There will be one more Castle Park session on Monday 17th December and then we’ll have a Christmas break. I’ll send out details when sessions will restart in the 2013 




Helsby weekend round-up 2nd december 2012

Hi all

At least four races that I know of this Sunday, two of which were club counters.

The last fell race of the current season was the Cardington Cracker organised by Telford Athletic Club and a very popular event in the fell running Calendar. Familiar territory for those that did the fell running relays in October.

Six Helsby vests were out for this one with the Shropshire legend Jim O’Hara leading Helsby home for full points. Some wonderful photos too, link below.


Full Results here:


and photos from Alistair Tye and Graham


Video evidence: the start http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VT4ROS4A9rI and the race http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qmwsNa1JUDo

lesley at cardington2 lesley at cardington jimmy at cardington jackie at cardington dave at cardington chris at cardington andy at cardington

Andy Robinson writes “It’s a great race, & I’d definitely vote to include it as a counter next year.  14.5km, so long as fell races go, with some seriously steep climbs, as you’d expect in that part of the world.  The pull up Caer Caradoc felt like it went on forever – the string of runners struggling up ahead of me looked like something out of Dante’s Inferno.”

Helsby positions and places as follows

45th       Jim O’Hara                                1.32.39
76th       Chris Baynham-Hughes              1.38.11
121st     Andy Robinson                         1.45.43
172nd     David Feakes                            1.53.50
243rd     Lesley Feakes                           2.05.43
252nd     Jackie Keasley                          2.09.20

Well done to everyone taking part in that one and as Andy states in his report, it will soon be time to think about next year’s fell counters.

It was also the 4th Northwest League country counter at Arrowe on Sunday morning.  It was a very different course than the previous week at Birchwood, still muddy in places but with fairly well drained fields rather than Julian’s ponds to run through. Only five green vests out for this one, with a poor men’s team showing of two but more than made up for with a fantastic women’s team on display.

Jayne Joy has tied up the series with a 4th win under her belt with another fine display of running and solid lead at the finish and alongside that Helsby runner Jenny Illidge on her first race for the club ran in an unbelievable 4th place which bodes amazingly well for the clubs future and the ladies team. Vanessa also ran well for a strong 12th place.

With Tracy Entwistle from Warrington also in the team this meant Helsby ladies scored 7 points to secure another 1st place which hopefully now puts them in a dominant position to retain the ladies trophy for the year. However, I’m sure the teams may well be changed next year because of this so will be interesting to see what happens.

The course was one small lap and two large laps with the leaders coming in just under 30 minutes. Free tea, coffee and sandwiches afterwards and with great course support from Mario and Joe and Jenny’s parents.

Helsby positions below and full results can be found on Steve Saunders website:


1st         Jayne Joy        
4th         Jenny Illidge
12th       Vanessa Griffiths

8th         Adair Broughton
104th     Andy Smith

Had some great news at the Guys Ten Mile Race at Garstang from yesterday where John Thompson secured a new ten mile PB which his chip time under the 80 minute barrier.


180th                 John Thompson                        80.07 (Chip time 79.42 new PB)

Also on Sunday was the Helena Tipping 10k where another PB was secured by a Helsby runner. Colin Thompson was in Wrexham to storm round in 38.04. According to Colin it was a great course and with perfect running conditions. Results should appear below in time here
For anyone wishing to take part in the Cheshire Cross Country Championships on Saturday 5th January, please send me your details of Age Group, Address (1st line and Postcode) and DOB. I’ll send off the details before Christmas so you still have a couple of weeks to decide. For details please see the Cheshire AA website

Any questions just ask and thanks for those sending race reports as it’s a big help