Hello Green Army
It was the AGM last week, and lots of goings on, below are all the people elected at the 2019 Spring AGM and the people to go to if you need help with anything. Also, if you can spare any time to help out with the endless amount of tasks we have, please let one of us know. Many hands make light work. It would be great to see some new faces helping out.
2019/2019 Helsby Running Club Committee:
Chair Vacant; (Jackie to handover this Summer)
Secretary; Phil Gillard
Treasurer; Jo Farwell
Men’s Captain; Colin Thompson
Men’s Vice captain;Mario Foschi
Ladies’ Captain; June Swift
Ladies’ Vice Captain; Debbie Reed
Ladies’ Fell Captain; Laura Baynham-Hughes
Head Coach; Joe Beswick
Webmaster; Steve Riley
Press Officer; Carol Shaw
Social secretaries; Lou Spruce & Helen Gillard
Half Marathon Director; Laura Baynham-Hughes
Assistant Half Director; Michelle Hardwick
Sandstone Trail Director; Dave and Lesley Feakes
Sandstone Trail Assistants; tba
Wobbler Director; Chris Baynham-Hughes
HCSC Rep; Betty Grieve
HCSC New Build Reps; Phil Gillard, Tim Palmer
Border League Co-ordinators; Vanessa Griffiths, Chris Fitzpatrick
Cross Country Co-ordinators; Rachel Arnold & Janet Robertson
Membership Co-ordinator; Tim Palmer
Calendar Co-ordinator; Tim Palmer & Karen Horsley
Club Statisticians; Geoff Collins & John Whitehead
Welfare Officers; Jane Ashbrook, Lou Spruce, Geoff Collins
Vest Co-ordinator Sue Buck
Blog Editors; Jim Jones, Chris Fitzpatrick,
Gaz O’Connor, Colin T, Karen Horsley,
A message also from Jackie, who I’m sure you will agree has lived and breethed the running club for the past 7 years and is about to pass on her wealth of knowledge to the next chairperson.
A quick update of committee changes from this weeks AGM. Great to see some new faces (blue text) joining but we still need a ChairPerson. Phil will issue the minutes soon & come up with a phased change over of chair with the possibility of a few changes along the way to make the task more attarctive to someone! Any interest and offers please come & chat to us.
We have decided to keep Wednesday training on the hill at Helsby as it really is so pleasant at this time of the year. So its not Delamere this Wed (15th), it’s the usual meet up at the club and hill run. We will go to Delamere later on in the Summer when we will all be wanting a change & to avoid the nettles! Next weeks (22nd) it’s the Greenway Time Trial, please come and try it out in the light and support Col & Lou.
Frodsham Downhill Run
On Sunday 7th July its the Frodsham Downhill Run, 12:30 start. Each year we help out at this race, If anyone can spare a few hours in the middle of the day to helpAndy Smith at the finish and other tasks that would be great. A few fresh faces helping this year would be much appreciated! Please let me or Andy know (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Club Presentation Evening
Out club presentation evening is on Friday June 14th, 7pm. Please keep the date in your diary.
Please can you pass them on to either Laura or Joe Beswick asap. Thanks
So who watched dots all weekend? I did, as i kept an eye on Paul Cunnigham’s and Ben Crossley’s super human attempt to complete the big one, the 100 mile Chester Ultra. Paul has sent us in a report.
Drop bags done – full mandatory kit checked and packed – enough snacks to open a tuck shop and a nervous twitch started which showed I was entering a race that I knew I may not finish.
Ben Crossley and myself stood at the start line listening to the race director give us our last instructions – I’d like to say we were calm and in a zen like state but personally I was bricking it.
The race takes you along the River Dee – The Old Dee Bridge along the North Cheshire Way eventually onto Helsby Hill – Frodsham Hill – Sandstone Trail through Delamere Forest – Beeston Peckforton and Bickerton out to Whitchurch return along the SST to Bickerton Hill then off out to Tilston before making your way back to Farndon and picking up the canal at Chester back to Waverton – absolute gem of a route.
Race begins and after 1 mile Ben says only 99 to go – my response wasn’t the kindest – please don’t do that mate or words to that effect.
Heading to CP1 4 guys left us to make a claim on their hopeful prize – I decided to let them go.
5 miles into the race the same 4 guys came up behind us – yes they had come off course and had been running fast in the wrong direction – which meant for at least a very short time Ben and I were actually in the leading group.
CP1 and CP2 we run straight through – first 12 miles completed in under 2 hours – we are now into our running and I have totally relaxed looking forward to the next CP.
Looking at the full race counting down from 100 miles would have destroyed my mental state so I went into the race breaking it down into more comfortable figures – CP1 to CP2 7 miles – CP2 to CP3 5 miles which helped massively.
Between CP1 and 2 we met Jim O’Hara always full of positivity and smiles luckily he was on his bike scoping out the Chester Half happening the next morning.
Into CP3 Durham on the Hill and replenish drinks and take a few snacks – straight out the door.
Coming off Helsby Hill bump into CBH doing some late late micro managing as still undecided what shoes he’s going to wear for Dragons Back – going for the triple crown – mans on a totally different level – go smash it mate.
Up the stairs to Frodsham Hill and Steve “Come on legs Bellefonte” Riley was waiting to give us encouragement and run a section – very much appreciated mate – also informed that we approx.28-30 miles in and holding 16th position – well this information just made me that little bit more determined plus I
Gets a big cuddle off Jane Ashbrook – its turning into a perfect morning.
Since leaving the roads for the trails and fells I spend a fair amount of time on the SST considering im a Birkenhead lad and knew the next 40 miles.
Weather was perfect for running I was moving the best across the ground that I had for some time and all past injury/niggle doubts hadn’t even come into my head – yep I was totally in my element and really now enjoying the task at hand.
I kept waiting for a tap on my shoulder from Ben my running partner that’s now turned into a solid friendship he’s a quality fella very strange and with plenty of issues – I love him like a brother – the tap never arrived – Im going to leave that there that’s Bens Story.
Meanwhile Im kicking his @rse lol
CP4 – CP5 completed onto CP6 first bag drop Beeston Village Hall – I had a full change of clothing – and changed into my trail shoes – first 48 miles completed in road shoes which had been a great decision – forced some noodles down and back out the door – my target now was to get to CP7 Whitchurch and get as close to CP8 before total darkness.
CP7 63 miles in grab a hot coffee and can’t believe how good I feel – although still almost 40 miles to go it’s the first time I actually knew for sure I was going to complete the race – another personal shot of adrenalin.
Started out of Whitchurch along the canal back onto the fields – it’s just a very slight but steady climb across the fields and by the time dusk was falling I had managed to make it back to where we turn off the SST and head out to Tilston
Headlamp on the next 6 miles seem take forever and noticed I wasn’t enjoying the styles anymore – this section that runs down sandy Lane up Hall lane to Bostock Hall across Wrexham Road and around Carden Park Golf Club is slightly overgrown and Im glad I completed my very last recce of this section just a few days earlier.
Gets into CP8 79 miles completed and the volunteer on the door gave me a message which was from Ben and Emma our coach – basically giving me another quality shot of adrenalin just at the time when I needed it most – plus a bag full of Bens Goodies – he’s Vegan so some nuts and plants didn’t get me drooling I can tell you.
Wrapped up like a polar bear headlamp on I left with 3 other guys to trundle through the night – cutting through fields and woodland in darkness with a few strange men on a Saturday night is a hobby of mine not a way of life – magical under torchlight crunching across the ground.
By the time we made it to CP9 there wasn’t much conversation going on and if honest I was starting to feel like when will this ever end.
Marshalls at CP9 couldn’t do enough these guys knew you were knackered informed us that only 10 miles to go – also if we wanted to break 24hrs we had 2 hrs 35 min to do it.
Slowly left CP9 knowing that the prize was in grasp – before leaving for the race I asked Gaz for some words of wisdom – dig deep be stubborn those last miles hurt – well he wasn’t joking they did hurt – someone also told me that when dawn breaks you get another rush of energy – dawn chorus started I got ready for this rush of energy – well from experience I can now confirm that in my case it’s an old wives tale – didn’t happen.
The canal again seemed to go on forever but then we arrived at Egg bridge Rd the start of the race HQ – yes – then in a cruel twist the organisers had made an out and back section on the canal to make sure the race was a minimum of 100miles – could see the finish line and had to walk to bridge 116 out n back 1.5 miles – these last miles felt harder than the whole race – turned off the canal onto the field and over the finish line – The first of many big races I hope – finished in 19th position 25hrs 11 min and got my Gold Buckle – What an experience.
Unbelievable achievement Paul to complete it, respect! I know after speaking to Ben he was a little down afterwards, but even completing what you did was amazing and i am sure you will smash it next year.
Jake Holmes has been pretty busy recently, a report on another jaunt of his
Fairfield Horseshoe Fell Race
After the usual midweek negotiation with the wife, a pass out on Saturday was granted. Adam Gordan was a step ahead in rallying support for a trip up to Ambleside and the Fairfield Horseshoe Fell Race and I don’t need much persuasion so we found ourselves on the start line.
The course was pretty simple, up to the top of Fairfield via a couple of other checkpoints, round the top of the valley and back down the other side. I liked the idea of not having to worry about nav (you had to carry a map but it was a clear day and there was never any danger of needing it) and wondered if all this ultra-running would translate into fitness on a shorter race?
Errm… i think it probably did? What it didn’t do was suddenly make me able to cruise up the side of a mountain like it was nothing! Adam set off at a fair pace quicker than I was going to manage so I was soon just trying stick with the runner next to you. I think previously I’ve been guilty of being too cautious – that’s the ultra-running “hold on there’s another 10hours of this yet so take it easy” thought process – so i set off quick to get past the a load of runners and put myself further up the field from early on. I paid for that fairly quickly as it started climbing steeply and people were passing me more than I was anyone else.
That all meant I pushed hard getting up that hill.. and it’s a long 4 or 5 miles of climbing to get to the top. It eased every now and then for an odd 20 second break but then kicked up sharply again. Proper.
I’d lost a few places on the steepest climbs but these runners weren’t getting far ahead and actually some of those that had past me at the beginning were still within reach so I started to feel I was holding my own… in my little section of runners… somewhere in the second half of the field 😂.
As we got onto a flatter section near the summit, everyone was bunched up heading single file along a sheep track so after the swamp filled 20 hours I’d put up with at the Fellsman, I happily skipped along the dry spongy tussocks to the side of the path and took back 10 or more places in one go. We’d done the hard climbing now… I was enjoying the runnable sections and looking forward to the downhill.
The downhill was a thing too… the other 4 or so miles of the race! Quick, technical, often a plenty of line choices so you could pass people. There was one steep stretch the size of a football field, of rocks the size of beach balls, just not as colourful or as comfy to land on. An old fella came past two of us at a pace and it showed what you could do if you were brave enough. I managed to keep with him on and then on then one of the next short ups, a guy chatted to me and then headed off as if he thought I wasn’t going to see him again. To be fair he was quick descending and stretched out a gap a couple of times but, again, it pushed me to keep up. With about 400 metres to go we’d caught 3 or 4 other people and I had a go and went passed them all ready to keep ahead to the finish. We were almost in the valley now and so it’s the end. I could see the car park coming quickly.
Ahh but hang on… we didn’t start at the car park… we’d had a 3/4 of a mile walk to the start! I turned right on to the slight incline of the track….
‘Ok, a road 1k time trial. Head up. Push on. They won’t be coming back at you, you’ll have broken their spirit with that impressive finish to the descent.’
‘But it’s still a long way to the finish… and after the effort you’ve just put on to get to the bottom first. The rain and cool hasn’t arrived either. You’re hot. Legs are heavy. Don’t be that guy to look behind. Someone’s there now though…’
I eased off a little as he was on my shoulder. I’ll catch my breath and as they push to go past, I’ll go again and cruise away from them.
They go… I go to go… but can’t go. Nothing left, they ease away and I take comfort out of the fact it wasn’t one of the runners I’d just past, but someone having a very strong finish and passing all of us. Another couple of hundred very heavy metres and across the finish line.
Dear me that was hard.
2h 3mins and 139th for me, from a field of 240ish (I think). It felt like I’d had a better run than that. Adam mentioned it was a strong field. He finished about 10 mins earlier and in the top 100 (again a bit lower than he’d normally be).
Maybe these lakes races are a high standard. I’ll take that as an excuse.
Sounds horrendous, but quality read as always, cheers Jake
Please find the consolidated results from last Saturday’s parkruns. Once again well done to all who took part, it’s great to fly the Helsby flag at these events.
Please keep sending in your race reports, I haven’t seen one for the Chester half which was a road counter so if anyone could put something together that would be appreciated. The email address in email@example.com
See you all soon