Helsby RC Weekly Round-up – Monday 5/8/19 to Sunday 18/8/19

Hello Green Army

Apologies for not sending out anything last week, I was too busy uploading photo’s to Facebook. So this week you have double the reports…..2 ha ha. Oh and Col’s TT results.

A notice from myself and Tim Palmer about the North West Road Relays. It would be great to get a few more runners so we can enter a couple of mens and ladies teams, but numbers really are low right now. This was a brilliant event last year.

The road relays are being held at Edge Hill University, Ormskirk on Sunday 8 September 2019. These were held last year in Delamere Forest; we hope for better weather.

Women’s team are made up of three runners each doing 5km. Men’s teams are made up of four runners each doing 5km. The start times are 13:00 (women) and 14:30 (men)

Tim and myself have volunteered to co-ordinate entries of teams for the club so please let me know by Thursday 29 August 2019 at the latest if you are interested. Please note this competition is only open to first claim runners (second claim runners should approach their first claim club).

http://merseysidecountyaa.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2014/08/The-20-th-NORTH-WEST-COUNTIES-ROAD-RELAYS-2019.pdf?fbclid=IwAR2CStWypx-FqTJQZL2EuROSvX2kWY_M3FX1aEXfu0H7EgUdZ0PLKhNyaMo

Email tim@timjenny.me.uk or fitzpatrick_chris@hotmail.com

Or contact us on our Facebook page, you can look at my photos whilst your there.

Rebecca Tate has sent in a race report for the Cybi Coastal Marathon

This was only the second event here, around the coast of Holy Island off Anglesey. I expected a lot of dedicated expert marathoners here, but there were a number of first timers like myself, and surprisingly even though there was a limit of 200 people you were never alone, it felt like a bigger run – in a good way!
As my first marathon I’d followed the training schedule and trained up to 20 miles. The route map showed that 20 miles was undulating coastal trail, after which the elevation spiked up as the path went over the summit of Holyhead mountain (technically a hill, but the name is fairly intimidating!). So I was going to consider this as a 20 miler, then I’d enjoy the excuse of the hill to walk up it and run back down the last few miles.

Well, all was going to plan. We set off over the first few miles at a fairly brisk pace through the town of Holyhead, which took us past the station and some built up parts, which diverted into urban trail, and then to the coast. It became really pretty, with deserted white sand beaches, little rocky coves, patches of woodland, flowers and butterflies. At one point we crossed a road bridge, with millpool-like water on one side, and a hollow where the water was being sucked under the bridge. At another place we ran on the beach past some moored boats, then there were fields, sand, marsh (boarded, so we didn’t get wet), rocks, narrow tracks through heather, vast open grassland.

Marshalling was fairly scarce, but we’d all been  told to follow the coastal path signs, which was straightforward enough – but we had to be scanned at every checkpoint. The first checkpoint was on a pavement and they provided oranges, peanuts, crisps and sweets – all very welcome even though I’d come prepared with my own food and drink. It was fairly hot – at least 20C with only a mild breeze, and a thin layer of cloud keeping the worst of the sun off. I drank to thirst, which turned out to be quite a lot, filling up my bottles at every checkpoint, but I was glad of having trained in all weathers including the heatwave.

The second checkpoint at around 10 miles was on a beach, and was stunning. There was a bit of a queue for scanning here, but everyone was pretty jovial, and we didn’t seem to be feeling the miles yet. Towards CP 3 the miles started to grind – a dodgy piece of signposting meant that a group of people ahead went the wrong way, and despite our shouts didn’t hear and carried on. I heard they put in a few extra miles finding their way back to CP3, which seemed to take forever coming and made me panic in case it was our group that had gone wrong. It was on a beach front though, where people out to enjoy the sun and beach cheered us on.

We continued through tiny villages and some roads, cliffs, narrow trails, past gorgeous rocky coves with crystal clear water which was so tempting to pop in and have a quick dip, but I’d overtaken an Ironman, and various other people, and was feeling slightly competitive, so I carried on. The pace slowed down with some hills and tracks too narrow or rocky to run on easily. CP4 came up suddenly, which felt good, then we started the long slog upwards to South Stack lighthouse CP5, after which was Holyhead Mountain.

This didn’t turn out to be the doddle I’d imagined. “I run up Moel Famau loads, it’ll be OK” I’d assumed. Well, it was steep, rocky, tall steps, not as rough or long as The Gulley, but not far off in terms of effort which, after 21 miles, was actually quite tricky! The final CP was at the summit, where we got scanned then had to be like mountain goats to take a narrow and steep rocky path down again on our jelly legs. The tricky terrain continued, up and down on rocky paths that couldn’t be run on without fresh legs. This is where nausea set in – with my heart pounding, I started wretching, and decided to sit down for a bit to clear my head. I couldn’t face any more electrolyte drink or food, so hoped I’d clear up without it. With only 2 or 3 miles to go, there was no chance of stopping now!

After a minute, everything felt better so I carried on. My legs were hurting now, it was a case of hanging on in there until the end, wherever that was. With the nausea I’d lost a good number of places, which was disappointing, but eventually the mountain was done and we reached coastal grass tracks, some road, then the Lifeboat house was finally in view. Although my time was 6 hours – considerably longer than I’d expected – there were plenty of people cheering on finishers and a lovely atmosphere at the end. One of the Lifeboat guys was waiting with a hose to spray us to cool down, there was soup, bread, tea, flapjacks and more fruit. I came 92nd out of a starting list of 200 (though only around 150 made it to the start it seems), so whilst 6 hours is a long time, it seems like a reasonable one for this particular marathon, and 7th in my age group isn’t too bad (yes, there was plenty more than 7 in it!)

As we drove away, feeling broken (Jason ran this too, as I’d kindly entered him for it too!), I decided that I’d definitely done that bucket list item and wouldn’t be doing a marathon ever again. However, the next day with hardly any muscle stiffness and feeling remarkably perky, I’m eyeing the next one…!
Sounds like a tough day at the office, well done Rebecca
Jake has also sent us in an essay, sorry report, thank you Jake. 
Sorry… these reports aren’t getting any shorter 😬

Beacons 100 Ultra

This one hurts… not so much the event… although that did of course… but the punchline.

Paul Cunningham, still on his post Chester 100 high: “you free a couple of weeks on Saturday to do a 100 miler in the Brecon Beacons?” What? Of course not, who’d say yes to a question like that? But he’d planted the seed and we soon found the Beacons 100 a month later, which I could pretend was enough time to prepare.

An 8pm Friday start meant a drive down that afternoon and half an hours kip for us in the car as the last sleep we’ll get till Sunday. The weather on a reccy a couple of weeks earlier had been baking hot with water shortage a problem. This was not going to be a worry this weekend with heavy rain and high winds promised for most of the 48 hour maximum allowed time. I don’t mind the bad weather but we’d signed up to a summer ultra so the nerves were definitely there as we ate our pre race lasagne in a pub down the road waiting for the start.

The route is a tour of the Brecon Beacons: Starting in Chrickhowell in the east, heading to the far west and back, taking any opportunity to go over a bump and back to the valley it can. Paul and I had decided to stick together, the company over two nights of it would be very welcome.

About 45 of us on the start line and the race got going. it stayed dry for 20 minutes and then the weather started to deliver what it had promised. It heads straight up to 2500ft and we were on the first ridge around 9:30pm or something, head torches were turning on and Paul asked another runner we’d been keeping with (Bev) if she fancied sticking together through the night which she liked the sound of so we became a three. 

(It’s already a long writeup and we’re on mile 5 or something so lets crack on)

The first 20 miles consisted of getting used to the terrain and conditions…. 5 metre visibility by head torch, very wet – running in streams that previous weeks had been bone dry paths, getting battered by the winds and realising Bev was a good runner. We encouraged her to head off if she wanted a couple of times but she was happy to stay together (a long way still to go).

CP2 was in the valley and at the start of 8K along a canal to get us to the next big haul. We took it in turns leading and it was good to be able to run at a better pace and get some miles behind you without the ‘stubbing your toe on a rock / heart in mouth as you catch yourself from falling’ type thing that’s never far away running on the tops. We knew what was next though as we’d done it on our only reccy: a straight line 600 metre ascent in about 2.5 kilometres. On our reccy, it took forever, and that’s when we could see. The climb was exposed too so as soon as we got going we’d be in the weather again. We decided we’d regroup every 100 metres or so as stopping for 30 seconds or whether every now and then would be better than being further apart and waiting for longer at the top.

It was crazy. Genuinely never seen weather like it. Easy as much energy being spent staying on the path (stream) as it was moving forward. Regrouping would involve crouching, hands on the ground to keep steady with your back to the weather and your hood as far over as you could pull it. Bev’s head torch got blown off at one point!

The summit was very welcome. No more climbing now tonight, we just need to get on the right path down to Brecon and start (in my head) leg 2 of 3 – ‘Saturday Day’. It was about a 6K descent that we all just got on and did without much in the way of chat, just get it done and get out of the weather which wasn’t easing as things got lighter or even lower really.

In the valley at CP3 finally the wind has eased and you realise how noisy it’s been for the last 7 hours as you’re able to talk to each other without shouting. A couple of guys who’d been catching us arrived 5 mins after and promptly handed in their trackers (the wind wasn’t for them) and they dropped out of the race. Talking to a marshal, they weren’t the first. 

We had another 8K valley stretch now heading into Brecon (thankfully before any cafes had opened as the draw might have been a bit much) before starting to head back up to the tops with the third, ‘big haul’ out of a valley to a summit. By far the hardest ascents were in the first half of the course and all three of us were in great shape, all smiles, moving well and plenty of chat. I don’t think anyone actually said it, but we were enjoying the extra challenge of the weather and it was doing us a favour in that others weren’t enjoying it so much.

“We’re going up into the weather again, has everyone eaten? … Same again in regroup regularly on the way up…” 

We were heading to the top of Cribyn. We’d seen it from the other side on our reccy and it looked a big thing then. This climb from the valley though went on and on, just didn’t stop. The wind was as bad as ever and the rain (or hail?) was hitting you like you were standing behind a gritter lorry. It was motivation to keep going to get it done but you were going up into it for a long time before there’d be any relief. Every brow I was trying to picture… ‘is this it? I thought it was steeper?’. And then there it was 100yards in front we saw the ridge you needed to take heading straight up to the summit… nice and dramatic with the rain whipping over it. Bev said “other races would have had diverts by now you know…” i checked my phone but no messages from the safety team so carry on it is.

About 10metres onto the ridge and a gust pushes me off balance. Admittedly it wasn’t far to go as it was almost hands on scrambling anyway, but Bev almost went straight after the combo led her to say out loud what we were probably all thinking… “this isn’t safe”. Either side of the ridge (which i think was only a couple of metres wide) the mountain dropped steeply away so the wrong gust of wind could have been dangerous. We sat down and made a plan to come off route and drop onto a path which avoided the summit but took us back to the route shortly after, adding a kilometre or something. The decision wasn’t taken lightly. None of us wanted to miss any part of the route but Cribyn will be there another day and so lets make sure we all are! The organisers had made it clear that if anything felt unsafe, don’t do it. This qualified.

We set off and called it in so they knew what were were doing, they completely agreed and actually thought we’d called to drop out. “No we’re having a great day… we just aint going up there!”.

Another summit (Pen-y-Fan – highest of the route) and into the valley again for CP4. A cup of tea… banana and anti chafe stick where needed! We’ve been in the top 10 the entire race and now we find out there have been more dropouts – we’re up to 6th overall (with 4th and 5th heading off just 5 mins ahead of us) and Bev has gone from 3rd woman to 1st! It was a great checkpoint and we set off raring to get to CP 5 and over half way. Only 8 miles this stretch. 

It went on for ever (spotting a theme here)… it had a good climb at the start but then over that it was an undulating expanse of Brecon Beacons moors. My watch was in my bag charging so I didn’t have a gauge on time or distance. Every hill we headed over, I was convinced we should be seeing CP5 and it wasn’t there. CP5 meant drop bags which meant dry clothes, restock of food and the start of the ‘last stretch’ into the finish: A ridge I’d been looking forward to since I first saw the route, then another 10miles to put us into the night again before 15miles of the route we reccyed. After that was the final 10miles down hill and flat to the finish. We were all still in great shape and, although it sounds early with 40 something miles to go, we knew we were going to finish and Bev had a great chance for the win. 

There it was, an A-road which meant the checkpoint. Painfully steep descent as a last test but it didn’t matter… we’d were there. Bev had her fella and a mate crewing for her who we’d met at earlier checkpoints and as I got to them I said “that was a hard stretch” but only got half a smile back. Seemed odd but they knew what we were about to hear a second later from the marshal: “Sorry guys, the race has been cancelled due to the weather. We’re pulling everyone off the mountain.”

Absolutely gutted. You don’t know what you’re putting in until you hear it’s all over out of your control. Paul said he understood and how dangerous it was up there. He was was completely right of course and he looked to me to back it up but I couldn’t get my head round it. I managed to say I understood but it didn’t stop it being very painful. We were managing the weather… we had dry kit, plenty of food, moving in a group etc etc we were fine! But another night of it with people tired cold and wet and scattered about remote parts of the mountains on their own… it would have been too easy for someone to get in trouble. Bev pulled us in for a hug. It had been quite a thing.

So that was the Beacons 100 (or half of it). 20 hours, 60miles and 17000ft gets you pretty focused and with the rest of the route well visualised… it’d take a few days to stop replaying it. Which, as you can maybe tell from the write-up, I’ve not quite done yet 🙂

Same time next year then.

Sensible decision by the organisers by the sounds of it, but well done, really great efforts by both of you.

 

No report as yet but another big well done to Danny Ryder, the Captain and Bish, coming 3rd at the Chirk Castle Relays last Thursday. There is a you tube clip that has appeared of the event, have a watch, it might just persuade you to do it next year, it’s a cracking event.

TT Results from a week or 2 back
Please find the (very) belated results from the 10k TT on 31st July. Sorry for the delay!
A big well done to our Bish for the win, smashing it in 35.56 and running one of the fastest ever times on the course, well done mate, you are on fire at the moment! Congratulations to Jane Ashbrook for a quality run to take the chequered flag for the ladies and also big kudos to Lauren Cooke who I believe ran her furthest ever distance to complete the course in 1.00.47, great stuff! Well done to everyone else, it was great to see some quality running and close battles and thank you for supporting the event, the feedback seems really positive and I’m glad everyone enjoyed it.
Thank you to the volunteers who gave up their time to ensure the event ran smoothly, they are Louise Spruce (RD & results), Helen Gillard (results), Debbie Read (timing) and Ben Tumilty (tail runner).
Results:
  1. Colin Bishop  35.53
  2. Richard Hankins  41.56
  3. Peter Rodriguez  43.12
  4. Chris Lloyd  43.14
  5. Jane Ashbrook  45.51 (1st lady)
  6. Tracy Woods  51.13
  7. Neil Fergusson  53.16
  8. Lauren Cooke  1.00.47
See you at the next one!
Cheers
Colin

Parkrun

 

Well done everyone who took part in a park run last week. Our consolidated club results are available HERE

Please keep sending contributions into:  helsby-race-reports@outlook.com

 

See you all soon

Fitzy

 

 

 

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Helsby RC Weekly Round-up – 24/6/19 to 30/6/19

Hello Green Army

Better late than never, thanks for sending the reports in, don’t forget we can’t do a blog without the reports. Keep sending them into helsby-race-reports@outlook.com

A few notices firstly from Tim

Possible first aid course

I am trying to gauge whether there would be interest if I organised a first aid course for Helsby Running Club. It is likely that the club would be able to provide some subsidy but I have not looked into the costs as yet. The courses that I am thinking of are either a one day (8hr) course promoted by England Athletics or a two day (16hr) Outdoor First Aid course (as recognised by various outdoor sport governing bodies eg MLTB, BCU, RYA). The likely venue is Helsby Community Sports Club. Please email Tim on tim@timjenny.me.uk if you are interested in one or both (or reply via Facebook).

Also, if you have a valid first aid certificate and would be happy to be included on a list of Helsby RC first aiders, please can you fill in this very simple online form https://forms.gle/4EZvYHmCRzyRKfog9?fbclid=IwAR2ZIIa7YRzBrvk_y0MioORBi_sfhF9_eadMBhJX_MfkVTWTqGzmN1yrPeI

Tim Palmer

Membership forms

Just to let you know that there is now an online membership form – https://forms.gle/47WUVW1gqJuqipd68 . It is also linked https://helsbyrunningclub.wordpress.com/membership-form-join-us/

Regards

Tim

Onto the reports, Jim Jones is first up. 

I visited Hamburg last weekend and did the Hella Half Marathon while I was there. The weather turned out to be as forecast– hot!! It was 28C at the 10.30am start line and rose to 34C before the race was over. The heat really tested the typically excellent German organisation on this occasion. There were water stations every couple of miles, showers and hoses set up along the way, and even the Hamburg fire engines had turned out to hose runners down. However, the logistics of getting drinks to some 8000 runners caused difficulties at a couple of the water stations. The irony of ‘Hella’ being a drinks company was not lost on me! Fortunately I didn’t experience any problems along the route. It was a fantastic way to see the city of Hamburg and there was loads of support along the way. Finishing in 1hr 54mins, it was the slowest half I’ve completed but I was happy that I wasn’t one of the 500 that dnf. Despite any problems caused by the heat, the event was the high point of a great weekend in Hamburg , and I’ll be doing it again next year. 
 
Jim
helsby 1
Sue Buck has sent in the following
Deestriders Off Road Grand Prix Series Race 2
Debbie had entered the full series and had mentioned how much she enjoyed race 1, so I thought I give this one a go.
The route is about 4.7 miles long. It starts with 2 laps of a field before venturing out to run roughly alongside the Dee twice, with an excursion into fields and a short bit of forest.  It’s a mix of terrain, but mainly grass and very flat apart from a couple of short ups onto a couple of banks. The fields were a rock hard under foot, and a bit uneven in places, but my ankle passed that test with flying colours!! We did think this might be a good course for someone to try who wanted to try cross country without the mud.  Hope to see some more #greenarmy at the next one! No results out as yet.
Sue
Great work, looks like a good series
Bish has sent in the next few reports
Hi all
Sale Sizzler is a series of 5k runs at Wythenshaw park. It is fast and flat which attracts a lot of interest. Although I have to race as first claim so with my red vest not green thought I would send in a report.
Last Thursday saw me head off to Manchester on a lovely warm sunny evening to join over 600 runners!
Race was won by D Clowes in an impressive 14.50. I set my sights on just getting around as fast as I could. V55 record at 17.01 in my sights. Well I managed to complete the course in 16.58 😁 Not that prize money for course PB was any incentive 🤔
I would thoroughly recommend it to anyone who fancies chasing a PB or just a nice race in the park.
Cheers Bish
Hi, Me again😂
Saturday saw WRC hold the summer 5 mile trail race of their 5 mile series which gets you a segment of medal which when you complete all four races slots together to make one large medal.
Well although Saturday started clouded it was very warm out there. The course takes you through wooded areas trails and paths around Colliers Moss Warrington. With plenty of support on the course and at the finish glad to say I came home first😁.
As this is on the doorstep for most of us I would recommend this series you can even do a virtual run and get some bling🥇👍
Cheers Bish
Excellent time on the 5k Bish congrats

Consolidated Parkrun results below.

https://www.parkrun.com/results/consolidatedclub/?clubNum=1721

That’s all this week folks

Cheers

Fitzy

Helsby RC weekly round-up from 13/05/2019 to 19/05/2019

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,
Susan Woodward-Moor

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.

AGM

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 (adsmith600@btinternet.com)

Club Presentation Evening

Out club presentation evening is on Friday June 14th, 7pm. Please keep the date in your diary.

I need to collect the perpertual trophies in please. Calling Colin Thompson Adam Gordon Ian Rutherford Chris Collins Richard Hankins Rachel Holden, Emily Smith

Please can you pass them on to either Laura or Joe Beswick asap. Thanks

Cheers

Jackie

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.

helsby 1.jpg

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.

helsby 2.jpg

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.

https://www.parkrun.com/results/consolidatedclub/?clubNum=1721&eventdate=2019-04-20

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 helsby-race-reports@outlook.com

See you all soon

Fitzy

Helsby RC weekly round-up from 8th to 14th April 2019

Hello Green Army

A little bit behind with the blog from last week, apologies, it’s still the weekend in theory so you can forgive me. Gaz will update you with another one in a few days i’m sure.

A few notices first of all, it’s Border League race 7 on Weds. It’s a 4 mile race so it’ll be a quick one and the presentation is afterwards with hopefully some coming home to Helsby. Would be great to finish off the season with another great turnout. Details below

Race 7 19:30 Wed 24 Apr 2019: staged by Prestatyn RC, Ffrith, post code LL19 7AR.

We are having our annual curry night this Friday 26th, after the Mid Cheshire 5k, let me know if you want to join in, plenty of time to get home, and get showered and changed and back out again. Booking the table for 9.30pm at India Garden. Contact me on social media or fitzpatrick_chris@hotmail.com

Thanks for Richard Hankins sending in a report. 

I love the Lakes and will generally take opportunities to get out there for a day. A friend of mine suggested we meet up for this race: we’ve done two other races in the series over the last couple of years and I liked them both. The weather was cold but clear so I took the opportunity to get the motorbike out and travelled the scenic route via the ferry to Hawkshead. There are a series of races on the day with the 10K trail race the best attended. A small event site was established on the recreational fields with a range of traders, food stall, loos etc. Inov8 were there selling their shoes and if you wanted to try them out you could wear a pair in the race and return them after.
The route is hilly, to say the least, rising from Hawkshead up to Claife Heights and then down onto the banks of Windermere. It was at times very rocky underfoot and only two weeks before London Marathon I was nervous of injury and really took it easy in some sections. There were a few fallers who were quickly picked up by Coniston MRT who were out on the course. The initial section was paths but later opened up to wide runnable forest trails. At 13km there is a long (approx 1m) very steep incline. The organisers call this the coffin trail and it was adorned with rather naff skeletons and images of coffins. After that the last 3K are fast, fun downhill.
This is one of the races I’ve most enjoyed. The views were glorious, the weather perfect an the atmosphere was good. I wasn’t particularly fast at 1:28:45 and 46th out of 150. But for once, the point wasn’t to be quick…it was to enjoy the run and come back in one piece. I reckon I might be back for this race next year.
helsby 1
Would be good if a few of us could get back to this one, sounds great
Wed 10th April see a huge turnout for the Chester Spring 5 which was the 3rd road counter of the season. 
Colin Bishop ran a great race finishing 1st from the Helsby contingent, but is not on the results below, i think due to being 2nd claim, still a quality performance, i believe one of the fastest in the country in his age group this year. Hannah Cowley finishing 1st lady, another excellent performance on the night. Janet Robertson came 3rd FV50, Debbie Read came 2nd FV60, and Jackie Keasley came in 3rd FV60. Well done tyo call that ran greats races.
26 28:03 312 chris fitzpatrick Helsby Running Club 28:02 26 Male 26 Male Vet 40 8
27 28:12 300 Hannah Cowley Helsby Running Club 28:12 27 Female 1 Senior Female 1
87 32:29 305 Richard Hankins Helsby Running Club 32:19 87 Male 81 Male Vet 45 12
107 33:12 319 James O’Hara Helsby Running Club 33:08 110 Male 100 Senior Male 40
121 33:41 50 Davyd Michell Helsby Running Club 33:35 120 Male 113 Male Vet 40 25
132 34:19 332 June Whitehead Helsby Running Club 34:13 131 Female 11 Senior Female 5
150 35:05 267 Ian Landucci Helsby Running Club 34:55 147 Male 134 Male Vet 55 7
168 36:16 401 Benjamin Tumilty Helsby Running Club 35:51 163 Male 147 Senior Male 50
183 37:28 299 Helen Owens Helsby Running Club 37:04 181 Female 26 Female Vet 40 4
184 37:31 218 Rachael Holden Helsby Running Club 37:06 182 Female 27 Female Vet 35 5
198 38:02 301 Gary O’Connor Helsby Running Club 37:37 194 Male 167 Male Vet 50 22
203 38:12 77 Roy Gaskill Helsby Running Club 38:04 204 Male 172 Male Vet 50 23
219 38:40 395 Janet Robertson Helsby Running Club 38:30 219 Female 36 Female Vet 50 3
227 38:59 17 Mike Barnard Helsby Running Club 38:48 229 Male 187 Male Vet 45 26
234 39:18 91 Carol Shaw Helsby Running Club 39:09 238 Female 42 Female Vet 55 4
241 39:29 167 Geoff Collins Helsby Running Club 39:18 242 Male 196 Male Vet 60 14
242 39:29 47 Kai Horsley Helsby Running Club 39:00 234 Male 197 Under 20 Male 10
244 39:30 89 Debbie Read Helsby Running Club 39:21 245 Female 47 Female Vet 60 2
299 42:39 333 Stephen Wiggins Helsby Running Club 42:10 296 Male 228 Senior Male 68
307 43:14 412 Geoff Shaw Helsby Running Club 43:02 308 Male 230 Male Vet 65 13
316 43:45 334 Christopher Igoe Helsby Running Club 43:15 312 Male 236 Male Vet 55 18
347 46:26 221 Jackie Keasley Helsby Running Club 46:04 349 Female 95 Female Vet 60 3
363 47:36 160 David Wiggins Helsby Running Club 47:05 360 Male 259 Male Vet 60 21
406 51:07 413 Janet Shaw Helsby Running Club 50:55 408 Female 137 Female Vet 65 4
408 51:14 46 Karen Horsley Helsby Running Club 50:39 406 Female 138 Female Vet 45 20
John Whitehead and Geoff Collins are updating the club counters as well now so these will get sent out every month now with the blog.

For those of you that don’t know every year we run Club Championships with various disciplines to compete in from ROAD / FELL / MINI FELL / TRAIL/ CROSS COUNTRY AND BORDERS LEAGUE. Myself and Geoff Collins are stato and collate the results for every race. There are certain Races that count towards each championship all of which are on the Helsby page (LINK:https://helsbyrunningclub.wordpress.com/2019-road-and-fell-champs/) and prizes for overall winners and various Category prizes.

Everyone who takes part in one of these events gets points, 1st for Helsby gets 30 pts, 2nd 29 pts etc and points are allocated by Gender so the more events you enter the better chance you have in the championships. In the Fell and Road Championships where there are 10 race’s we’ll only take your best 7 results.

In the past we’ve never really shouted about the results until presentation night but to help increase a little competition and increase the Helsby presence at some of these events we thought we’d try and do a monthly update until we only have a few events left in each championships.

Road:

In the Road Championships so far we have had 3 events and the leaders for both the men and ladies are the only Helsby vests to compete in all 3 events, the on fire Chris Fitzpatrick lead the men while the unicorn that is Helen Owns leads the Ladies

helsby 2

 Next Race is the Spring 5k in Kingsley on the 26th April with the dry weather continuing extra places are being made available!!

Fell:

As for the Fell’s we are only one race in so plenty of time to get involved and most races start and finish at a Pub too! Pipe Dream was the first Race with only 4 Helsby vests out, Rachel Arnold took the only Ladies Points on Offer while Tim Palmer claimed the victory for the Helsby men bagging himself 30 points.

helsby 3

 Next Race is the Llangynhafal Loop on the 27/04/2019 this is 7.6KM in length and classified as an AS race (Basically short in distance with S**t loads of accent, but don’t let that put you off)

Best Regards
John

Well done all who took part in a park run Our consolidated club results can be seen HERE

That’s it for now, Remember to keep sending any reports or other stuff you want including to helsby-race-reports@outlook.com

 

Cheers

Fitzy

Helsby RC weekly round-up from 11th to 25th March 2019

Hello Green Army

2 weeks for the price of 1 this week, luckily for you all you didn’t miss anything last week as there was nothing to report on. Few notices to start of with.

Club counter season is well under way, so Tim has reminded us whats coming up over the next month or so

  • Borders League Race 6: Buckley RC Sun 31/03/2019 11:00
  • Chester Spring 5 Wed 10/04/2019 19:00
  • Borders League Race 7 + Presentation Night : Prestatyn RC Wed 24/04/2019 19:30
  • Mid Cheshire – 5K Spring Fri 26/04/2019 19:00
  • Llangynhafal Loop (AS) 7.6km/4.7m 533m/1749ft Sat 27/04/2019 13:00
  • Ysgol Dinas Bran (AS) 6.9k/4.3M 350m/1150ft Wed 08/05/2019 19:15
  • Fairfield Horseshoe (AM) 14.5km/9M 914m/2999ft Sat 18/05/2019 12:00
  • Chester Half Marathon Sun 19/05/2019 09:00

A quick message from myself about this Sundays Border League race 6 in Buckley

A rally cry to all, it’s mothers day this Sunday and i’m expecting numbers to be affected but if you can, please please come and race. We have had some cracking turn outs this season and it’s got the mens and ladies teams into the position they are in now because of these fantastic turn outs. I would hate to see any of our teams get penalty points at this late stage.

It’s also Helsby V’s Felsby leg 1, so i’m expecting as per usual a great turn out from the Felsby crew. Hopefully see you all on Sunday.

Thanks ….Fitzy

Over to the Captain for our first report – Cheshire 10k – Arley Hall

Our second road counter of the year and we had 12 Helsby vests toeing the line at Arley Hall ready to do battle on a cool but still morning, race conditions were perfect. The Cheshire 10k is one of the flattest and fastest 10k races in the Northwest and is a good gauge of your fitness early on in the year before the summer racing season begins.

We had some fantastic running on the day and its congratulations once again to Fitzy who is in the form of his life taking a whopping 1.30 minutes off his PB coming home in 33.55 and first back for Helsby. Months of hard marathon training has certainly paid off and he set one of the fastest 10k times by a Helsby runner for quite some time so be sure to congratulate Fitzy when you next see him.

Coming home first for the ladies with an outstanding run was Carol Shaw who is one of the most consistent runners in the club, well done Carol! Helen Owens was close on her heels and scored a new PB with a superb run and is getting back to her best after months of consistent training and mileage. It’s also congratulations to Janet Shaw who won her age group and we had some fantastic results from the rest of the troops who all put in a fine display of running. Well done everyone!

Please see the Helsby results below:

helsby 2

Trevor Lewis is next up  

“I had heard a little about Wrexham‘s Run festival from a friend who runs for Mersey-Tri. I normally run Wilmslow half marathon in late March but am unable to do so this year so I decided to try to find a fairly local half marathon earlier on in the month .

Wrexham Run Festival appears to have been running since 2015. It combines a full marathon, a 20–mile race and, in addition to these, a half marathon. There is also a short fun run for children & families.

The Full marathon and 20-mile runners set off at 9am; the fun-run at 9.30 and the half marathon 10:30am all from the same point which stands opposite Wrexham’s Waterworld Centre. The three competitive groups run three diverging courses and then all merge and run together for the final 5 miles.

When I initially read the description of how the race was organised my immediate thought was “That sounds like total carnage” and pictured some poor fun runner taking a wrong turn and ending up having to run 26.2 miles.

As it transpired there was nothing at all to worry about; it was all very well-organised and the marshals were absolutely brilliant in not only cheering you on but also maintaining that you ran in the correct direction. The course website suggested that personal bests were achievable so, I thought “Ok, great, it must be a flat course then”

Well, it’s not.

After a mile of running through a residential area you enter mainly rural settings. For anyone who knows Wrexham the route took in Clays golf course, Wrexham Industrial Estate, Bowling Bank and Marchwiel as a loop that takes you back through to finish at the start point at Waterworld.

There’s a beast of a hill at around mile 5-6 and lots of undulations after that.

Very much like Helsby’s Four Villages Half Marathon there is a lengthy downhill stretch at mile 11-12 that gives your legs a breather and allows you to pick up some time before the final push. The final mile is similar to that of Chester Half Marathon i.e. mostly a moderate uphill with crowds & Sunday shoppers cheering you on.

The weather conditions were not ideal; there was a really strong, swirling wind, some hail and a lot of standing water (or small lakes – whichever description you prefer) on the country roads.

Helen Owen ran the 20-mile race and we agreed that there was so much water on the course it was a fair shout to classify the race as a run/swim biathlon.

Having said that; that’s winter running for you and the weather won’t be that challenging every year.

I noticed that a lot of us half-marathon runners did pass the full marathoners during the final 5 miles some of whom were, understandably, struggling.

I offered encouragement to those that I passed but I couldn’t help thinking it could be a bit demoralising being overtaken by runners that were only completing half of your distance. Under those circumstances it wouldn’t be my personal choice for a marathon though you could spin the argument it on its head and assert that the half marathon group could potentially pace the other runners along in those final miles.

The half-Marathon field amounted to only about 200 runners so there was little or no jostling for position and it was easy to get into your stride and even when the 3 races converged it didn’t feel particularly congested. There were, however, a number of sharp turns on the course where you lost a little bit of momentum.

Parking at Waterworld amounted to a few hundred spaces which filled up by about 8am due to the influx of runners competing over the longer distances. I arrived early and nabbed a space but I did see half-marathoners, who arrived later, circling around trying to find somewhere to park. The Sunday parking rate at Waterworld was only £2:00 for 24hrs and it was very easy to get off the car park at the end.

I managed to shave a few minutes off my PB which seems to justify the organiser’s claims of it being a fast course. Another positive for Helsby runners is it is only a 30 minute drive from the club.

There were no Welsh cakes handed-out at the finish as was the case at the Wrexham Village Bakery Half last month – but I suppose you could always buy some locally!

In summary- a decent Half Marathon race either for the first of the year or as a follow on from The Four Villages or Village Bakery runs. The 20-mile race could potentially be used as a competitive run in training for the London or other April Marathons.

I would definitely consider running this half marathon again in the future.

Trevor Lewis”

Cheers Trevor, i’ve seen the pictures and it looked more like a swim run event than half marathon.

After Hayley’s successful bingo night down at the sports club (i’ve seen a different side to Chris “two little ducks quack quack Igoe), she’s back to the serious business of training for the London Marathon, have a read of her blog.

Pick Yourself Up & Start Again

Parkrun

Well done everyone who participated in a Parkrun see our full consolidated report is HERE

Last but not least on Friday 26th April, after the mid Cheshire 5k which is a club counter, we are going for the annual curry in Frodsham and a pint or 5. Approx 9pm start, email me if you want to come along or let me know on social media

That’s all for this week

Fitzy

Helsby RC weekly round-up from 11th to 17th February 2019

Hello Green Army

Notice from Jackie.

Club Championships Competition & Training

Our list of Summer 2019 Championship races has been updated – please see: https://helsbyrunningclub.wordpress.com/2019-road-and-fell…/

There is a pdf poster version attached and at  https://helsbyrunningclub.files.wordpress.com/…/helsby_summ…

The key update is the Mini-Trail Championship 🙂

There’s plenty to do with a varied selection of road, fell, trails, & mini-fells (to encourage newcomers to the fells). The attached gives the rules for each and how many count etc in each competition. The annual Helsby versus Felsby races are highlighted as are the Inter Club Fell Championship Counters.  Our annual awards ceremony takes place in May/June to issue awards for both the Summer & Winter (Cross Country & Border League) Championships.  We will be announcing the date soon, in the meantime hope to see you at one of these races very soon!  

Here’s a list of the remaining Wednesday Winter Training Sessions, please meet at the club at 6:30 except for Delamere. Phil has kindly compiled a similar enticing list for the Summer, to be announced soon!

 Feb

20

Manley Mere

Steady run

27

Mickle Trafford

Time trial

March

6

Frodsham

Fartleks

13

Delamere

Lake run – meet time tba

20

Manley Mere

Steady run

27

Mickle Trafford

Time trial

Also, please see Jackies race report from the Village Bakery half marathon.

Yesterday was our first race kicking off this “Summers” 2019 club championship.

13 Helsby runners made the journey to Wrexham Industrial Estate on quite a warm sunny morning for February.  I last did this race many years ago & still have memories of a nightmare race for the organisers; Within 100m of the start there was a T junction with no sign & no marshal, the front runners turned left (the wrong shorter way) & those in the know turned right (the correct way!). Each race eventually merged & finished at the same finish line. Not sure the results meant much though as some very good times were recorded by the faster runners but not over the full distance!  The race has grown in popularity since being taken over by Mike Harrington at Cute Fruits & this year a record 2373 runners crossed the line at exactly 13miles  192½ yds.

It’s a surprisingly good course considering it starts & finishes in an Industrial Estate!  After a 5 mile loop thats very similar to the Border League course, firstly going by the factory units, then off into the countryside before passing more units on the way back.  Then a much bigger loop down fairly narrow, some wet & muddy country lanes towards the Dee (without actually seeing it) before heading back steadily uphill & into a strong head wind back into the estate for the final couple of miles.   For a big race it was good because it starts on wide roads & enters the narrow ones when everyone is more spreadout, so no holdups.

Chris was going for a PB but the winds made it impossible for that, still a brillant time in 1:16. Sub 1:30’s for Richard & Degsy.  Well done to Jane who smashed 1:40, Trevor who was close on her tail, Helen loking good for the Mancheter Marathon & to everyone else who ran. I was chuffed with sub 2 hours having not ran a half for a while.

Memories of the day were, hearing & seeing first lambs of the year as we ran down the farm lanes.  Just as hunger set it, the overwhelming baking smell of baking at 12 miles which turned out to be the Kellogs factory & everyone getting a pack of Village Bakery Welsh Cakes & a Welsh Dragon gong at the end.  The one downside was the finish was quite a long way from the start & parking, the whole estate looks the same & there were no signs. At the end of the race the whole estate was full of lost tired runners staggering around in circles. I added on an extra couple of miles trying to find Trevors car, didn’t know there was more than one Village Bakery on that maze of an industrial estate. Thanks to Neil Furgasson who drove me & an Oswestry Olympian from the full fat to the gluten free one!!

Position Finish time First name Last name Net time Net position Club Position Gender Gender position Category Category position
42 01:16:33 Chris Fitzpatrick 01:16:28 41 1 Male 42 Vet 40 11
236 01:28:07 Richard Hankins 01:27:52 238 2 Male 225 Vet 45 32
318 01:30:03 Derek Morris 01:29:48 318 3 Male 290 Vet 40 55
594 01:40:10 Robert Hough 01:39:34 605 4 Male 500 Senior Male 239
626 01:41:11 Jane Ashbrook 01:40:38 638 5 Female 100 Vet 40 19
644 01:41:47 Trevor Lewis 01:41:14 665 6 Male 541 Vet 50 57
761 01:44:45 Jim Jones 01:43:04 734 7 Male 628 Vet 50 67
810 01:46:04 Helen Owens 01:45:34 829 8 Female 145 Vet 40 26
1051 01:51:54 Geoff Collins 01:49:35 1010 9 Male 831 Vet 60 21
1263 01:57:37 Jackie Keasley 01:57:01 1316 10 Female 311 Vet 60 3
1282 01:58:07 Neil Fergusson 01:56:57 1309 11 Male 965 Vet 65 9
1885 02:16:41 Matt Willcott 02:15:31 1934 12 Male 1236 Vet 40 221
1885 02:16:41 Stephen Wiggins 02:13:39 1881 12 Male 1236 Senior Male 532

It was a tough last few miles thats for sure Jackie

Richard Hankins has also sent in a report for this race as well

The Village Bakery was the first half marathon I ever ran back in 2016. It has, therefore, a special place in my heart. It isn’t the most glamorous event, starting and finishing in the Wrexham Industrial Estate, but most of the course is on country lanes heading out towards the Dee. It is always well organised, cheap to enter and just 20 minute drive away. For me it is the start of the running season and my first measure of how fit I am this year.

This year the old headquarters on Oak Road had closed and so the parking arrangements were very different. There was also a larger entry with 3000 enrolled. There was plenty of warnings to arrive early and plan your parking. Geoff and I did and had no problems, but the traffic looked pretty poor later on and there were big queues for the loos. Approaching from the opposite side of the start line due to the new parking arrangements made the start a little chaotic. But, once off, everything was well organised on what felt like a mid-Spring day.

The first 10 miles of the race were fab: I felt full of energy and able to stick to my plan….in fact, I made up time. I began to dream of finally getting a 1:25 but sadly the last three miles were a nightmare. I think of this race as flat, but Strava shows that miles 10 – 13 are consistently uphill. Not by a great margin, the climb is only 120 feet, but enough for you to feel it. This year that coincided with a 15mph headwind. I just wasn’t fit enough to fight it and lost 2 minutes finishing 20 seconds slower than last year. A lot of people found the same…the last third of the race was a challenge (fell runners snigger away…).

Fabulous Fitzy led the Helsby field home in 41st with a 1:16 run…mightily impressive stuff! I lolloped home in 1:27 with Degsy making a valiant return in 1:29. Rob Hough came in at 1:39 and Jane Ashbrook was first lady home for the club in 1:40. There was then a wave of Helsby finishers: Trevor Lewis (01:41), Jim Jones (01:43), Helen Owens (01:45), Geoff Collins (01:49), Jackie Keasley (01:57), Neil Ferguson (01:56), Steve Wiggins (02:13) and Matt Wilcott (02:15).

A decent turn out for the first counter of 2019…see you at the next.

Richard

Talking about Fell runners, over to John to tell us about a steeplechase race

So after being volunteered by your wife to take Debbie Reeds place in this race I thought I better give it a good old shot. Having done the mid week Harrock Hill series I had a little bit of an idea what I was letting myself in for…. well so I thought.

This was the 49th Parbold Hill Race organised by Skelmersdale Boundary Harriers is 6.7 miles of mixed terrain including roads paths and farmers fields and what a little cracker with the start and finish at a proper country boozer! Helsby had 3 runners out myself Janet and Nesta helping make up a field of close to 600.

After a short road section to start a sharp left turn took you on the a quarry track and up you climbed. The next few miles was a mix of fields and tracks, the road running clubs stood out a mile as their runners gingerly edged around the mud while my route choice was through the middle! At just over half way my race fell apart with a long road section with a climb up Parbold Hill, at this point I realised racing with a cracked rib wasn’t my brightest move, however at the top and into the next field I was greeted with a small queue at the next stile a great opportunity for a breather and to take in the amazing views and countryside, you don’t get these on an industrial estate! The next few miles past and then a nice downhill section got my legs turning over, just before you arrived in the final field you are greeted with a horse jump a crowd of people and a number of cameras all waiting for that unsuspecting faller!

All in all a great little race and if you don’t want to wait for next year to try out the course look out for the Harrock Hill Series starting late spring!

Cheers
John

thumbnail_image1

Cracking photo

Also a little blog from one of our new ish member Hayley Brooks, about her journey to the London marathon. Good luck with the training

The Highs and Lows

Last but not least Parkrun

Please find the consolidated results from last Saturday’s parkruns. Well done to everyone who took part!

http://www.parkrun.com/results/consolidatedclub/?clubNum=1721

 

Thanks, see you all soon

Fitzy

Helsby RC weekly round-up from 14th to 20th January 2019

Hello Green Army

Most important news of the week. It’s Borders League race 4 on Sunday, and we need another good turnout please. It’s a local one as well over on the Tattenhall course, which is a cracker. Post code CH3 9QF, 11am start. For anyone that has not done one of these yet just turn up in your race vest, its free of charge, it’s as simple as that.

Message from our race director Laura Baynham-Hughes, after the successful weekend and running of the Four Villages Half Marathon. 

A huge thank you to everyone who helped on Sunday, Saturday and in the run up to the 4VHM. It really is a team effort and you are all amazing. It has been another successful race with 1636 runners taking part and overwhelmingly positive comments! We should all be very proud. Thank you. Well done to all the Green Army runners and I was extra delighted to present the local trophies to two Helsby members and see Hannah finish as second lady!

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Alison Halsall sent in a 4VM race report…thanks Alison.

After suffering from severe cold during the race last year, I found myself continually checking the weather reports for 4VHM day on Sunday which varied as the days went by from sunny to sleet and even snow. In the end it turned out to be near perfect race conditions, let’s face it, I was just pleased there was no ice or snow but that’s just a runners point of view! More importantly, it meant that all the effort and organisation put into this fantastic local race paid off. I jogged down to the start line from home to be met by a great ‘buzz’ at the club and the start line. It was great to talk to runners from other clubs who, despite also experiencing the conditions last year, had decided to come back again. I also noticed a lot of green 4VHM hats in the line up! Before long the race started and the support from the off was amazing. This support continued throughout the race and it was great to see familiar faces from local Helsby people, Helsby cubs who were enthusiastically handing out water, from the marshals and fellow runners from the club (Mario, Joe, Vanessa to name just a few).

 

After moaning about not feeling great and being a bit worried about the lack of serious training, I started to feel really good on the day and ran hard. Thanks to James Higgins who encouraged me and pulled me a along in the first half of the race before I found my rhythm. Once I realised that I could aim for a decent time, I just went for it and tried my best to get a category place too but was pipped in the last few hundred yards but my legs couldn’t go any faster. I was really pleased with my time (and the fact that I could feel my hands and feet this year!) and it was also great to hear that Hannah and Chris had done so well both overall and in winning the local trophies too. Well done to all the Helsby runners and everyone involved, what a great team effort which makes for a fantastic race. I may even do it all again next year! 

Alison

 

Totally agree about the support on course, it was brilliant this year.

Mark Gittens also sent in a short race report, cheers Mark 

I set off from the start. I soon realised that I was fat and heavy. So, I suffered around the course and finished in my slowest ever time. The end.

Spot on !!!

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Karen Horsley is trying to rally the troops and raise some funds for a great course

Please have a read of her blog and details to the fun run on 10th Feb

My Dad

https://www.facebook.com/events/1983160565108541/

 

We have the beer festival coming up soon at the club, would be good to see as many as possible support it, might be the last one in the lovely club house

2019

Parkrun

Our consolidated club report can be seen http://www.parkrun.com/results/consolidatedclub/?clubNum=1721

That’s all for now, see you all soon

Fitzy

Helsby RC weekly round-up from 19th to 25th November 2018

Hello Green Army

Happy December. Christmas is fast approaching, drink lots, eat lot, but make sure you still run lots. A few notices from myself to start off this week, especially about the Borders league.

Borders league Sun 9th Dec

Looks like us men have a bit of a fight on our hands to stay in the top division in the Borders this season. It’s vital we get lots of us over to Anglesey on 9th Dec, as I think a lot of teams will be put off by the journey. Yes I know it’s quite far away, but I think this will be a great race and good experience of doing a race that’s a bit different as it’s around the Trac Mon race circuit. 11am start, post code LL63 5TF. There’s showers as well so bring the family and have a day out around Anglesey. 👍 Who’s in?

Oh and let’s not forget about the ladies who are flying high right now, a good turnout will help keep you pushing for the division 1 title.

To cut down on the amount of drivers heading over, i would suggest everyone meet at the club at 8.45am ish. There’s already a few who will be heading over together.

Friday Fun Club 

After speaking to the FFC committee, we shall be taking FFC on tour next Friday 7th Dec, same day as the Christmas party. 6am from Netherton Arms Car Park, we will do doing a pub crawl.

We shall run down to the Cheshire cheese, go to the queens, bears paw, golden lion, kash, helter skelter, ring o bells, bulls head, bellmonte, and finally the Mersey view, then back down the hill again to Netherton arms, if time permits we shall do the route twice, I reckon it will be around 6 miles and two huge hills, so perfect training for the Xmas party later that day.

Anyone up for the 6am pub crawl?

Xmas Party 

Xmas Party next Friday 7th Dec, meeting at Helter Skelter at 7.30pm, Christmas Jumpers compulsory

Thanks to Ed Halliwell for sending in the only race report of the week. 

Little Stretton to Stiperstones Time Trial on Foot

Not the most snappily titled race ever, but one that certainly got me interested, as well as Rebecca/Mildredthehen. The concept is simple – get from Little Stretton to Stiperstones as quickly as you can. Any route is allowed along as it doesn’t cross private property (incl. farmers’ fields), and you set off at one-minute intervals. Distance was given as 9 to 10 miles depending on route. To me, it sounded like Orienteering, but without the troublesome problem of finding controls on the way, and you were allowed to fully plan your route beforehand – simple!

After a bit (OK, a lot) of looking at routes beforehand, two things were clear: going over Long Mynd was unavoidable; and a fair bit of running on road was likely to be involved. I decided to run in my road-to-trail shoes for speed/cushioning on the roads, but most people opted for fell shoes.

The run involved a fairly early start, as there is coach from finish to start, so you can park at the end. Rebecca and I left Kelsall around 7am, to get the coach at 8.30, which arrive at registration around 9.30, and following a fair bit of queuing for registration and (solitary) toilet, we had a start time slot of between 10.10 and 10.20, so over three hours after we left. This was a downside, but the upside was that a point-to-point run means you see more scenery than a circular one.

The run can be done as solos or pairs, and you are set off at 1-minute intervals. On the face of it, this sounds like you would be running alone, but actually there ends up being more passing, as you catch slower runners who start before you, and get caught by faster runners who started later (or who got lost!).

Navigation I think was fairly straightforward, as long as you kept attention to your map. The first section up the stream to Long Mynd was very scenic. I took a different route to the top than pretty much everyone else, which was partly driven by my footwear meaning I wanted to minimise the off path part, so went straight up an earlier hillside on a bearing. Pretty soon we were up into dense fog, which added to the navigation challenge, which I was happy with.

After the top of the Mynd, it was generally road, interrupted by a bit of bridleway, until we entered the Stiperstones Nature Reserve. The road section was surprisingly taxing, as it was a gentle uphill, but with tired legs if felt more. Was glad I was in the road-to-trail shoes at this point, and passed quite a few people. In the nature reserve it was back onto paths, with a bit more climbing before it was time to descend.

The initial part of the descent was quite technical, and I had to slow down in my footwear and was passed by 3 or 4 guys in lugged soles, but the second part of the descent round Green Hill was more runnable.

Finish was by a pub, thus clearly qualifying as a fell run, but was quite unusual in that the spread of starts obviously also meant a spread of finishes, so people would arrive over a 3-hourish window.

Overall, I really enjoyed it. The navigational element was right up my street, and it was interesting passing people who started before you, and vice-versa, plus the point-to-point nature was good and the countryside great. Downsides could be seen as the time involved to get to the start and the amount of road running in the middle, but that’s just part of the unique nature of the event. One of the highlights of the year for me.

Results (171 runners) – Edward, 1h 24m 25s, 39th – Rebecca, 1h 55m 03s, 115th

Edward Halliwell

No race reports from last weekends Cross Country at Sefton Park, but some results from the day below. Well done to all. Picture sent in from Jane Bishop

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https://www.uka.org.uk/competitions/the-british-athletics-cross-challenge/

Consolidated Parkrun results

http://www.parkrun.com/results/consolidatedclub/?clubNum=1721

That’s it for this week, see you all next Friday morning, Friday night and Sunday morning

Happy Fitzmas

 

Helsby weekly round-up from 22nd October to 28th October 2018

Hello Green Army

Please keep on sending your reports in to helsby-race-reports@outlook.com, it makes us bloggers lives that little bit easier, as we can just cut and paste, we’re good at that, we’re not good at writing the reports each week.

Message from Foz re; upcoming XC

Hi all. The second fixture in the Liverpool & District cross country will be held at Sefton Park on 24th November 2018. This event is a pre-entry event, so if any Helsby runners would like to run in this please email me on mooeyf@hotmail.com no later than Monday 5th November to confirm your entry.
This is a great event in the XC calendar, it’s free to all Helsby first claim members, although the club do pay this for you so please double check your diaries for any clashes.
So to all the regulars and new members best of Luck.
Cheers
Paul
Message from myself

A week tomorrow (11th Nov) is race 2 in the borders league, and it’s a local one in Upton, by Chester, CH2 1NN. It’s a 9.30am start because of remembrance Sunday, and i think this is an ideal opportunity to smash our record of runners who have attended a borders league race. I think the record was 40 a few seasons back, we had 33 at the last one in New Brighton with quite a few of the regulars missing. It would also be great to see even more new faces as well.

So, could i please ask Felsby, Trailsby, second claim runners, and you regulars to turn up in your droves for this one. It’s a great 5 mile measured race around the Spring 5 route for anyone wanting an official PB. It’s free all you need to do is bring your club vest.

See you all next Sunday

http://www.bordersleague.org.uk/fixtures/

 

Race report from myself

Last Sunday seen the start of the Sunday XC season in Clarke Gardens, Liverpool. I believe this was a record turnout of over 500 runners for this extremely popular free club race, and the conditions were near perfect, lovely clear blue skies, a little chilly and plenty of incentive to hurry up and finish the race with dohnuts galore, cakes, and huge jammie dodgers for us Helsby runners.

First 3 in for the men were myself, the captain followed by the in form Phil Tomkinson. The mens team came in 6th overall out of 24.

First 3 in for the ladies were Laura BH, Christine Roach and Debbie read. The ladies finishing in 10th out of 24.

The next fixture is on 18th Nov, in Skelmersdale. Full results below

http://www.stevesaunders.co.uk/xc/2018/race1_18.pdf

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Parkrun

We had runners at Pheonix, Chester, Delamere, Widnes, & Birkenhead. Well done to Roy Gaskill , 22nd at Widnes. Our consolidated club result are HERE

That’s all folks

Fitzy

Helsby RC weekly round-up from 24th to 30th September 2018

Hello Green Army

Message from Foz to start the news this week

Hi all
October has now arrived so it can only mean one thing mud. I know Fitzy is rallying the green army for the borders league. So now it’s time for the cross country troops to dust down the spikes.
Saturday 13th October is the start of the Liverpool and District XC at Arrowe park, please note there is a new start time of 11 am. This race is just turn up and run but I will be in touch for other races in this league that are pre entry.  The first borders league is the day before so make it a double header.
Sunday 28th October is the start of the north west XC at Clarke gardens Liverpool a 10am start.  All of these races are free to enter for all Helsby members who are First claim only and club vests must be worn.  So to all new members give XCa go and you will be hooked.
It would be great to see lots of green vests on the start line.
All XC fixtures can be found on the club’s race calendar.
Cheers
Paul
No race reports this week, so a quick one from me on the Multi Terrain Series that finished last Tuesday. It’s worthwhile to note as well that this might be the last time we see this race series, Steve Saunders is stepping down after 20 years of organising them. It’s a shame really as they are great value for money, and are very enjoyable races.
Full results for last Tuesday can be found here.
A big well done to Paul Frodsham, 2nd O60, Debbie Read 1st in her age cat, O60, and me 3rd O40
Not a race report but the captain sent this in from last Wednesday’s successful 10k time trial
A big thank you to everyone who attended the 10k time trial last Wednesday, we had a great turn out with 12 runners toeing the line and an excellent standard was set by everyone!
Congratulations to Fitzy who was first overall in 37:08 and Hannah who was second overall and first lady in 38:00. this is also a brand new female course record, great stuff Hannah!
A big thank you to Louise Spruce (timing & results), Jackie Keasley (timing & results), Joe Beswick (timing) and Mario Foschi (marshalling).
See you all at the end of October for the next time trial.
Cheers
Colin
Link to results here:
Well done to all Park run participants this weekend, consolidated results below
Please don’t forget we have our 1st Borders League race on 14th October, and I am organising a training run for all abilities, especially to new club members who haven’t done a race like this before……details below.

June has come up with a great idea of a little get together and training session for those thinking about or already planning to do the Borders League Race 1 on Sunday 14th October, or any of them over the course of the season. The main aim of this is for anyone who has not took part in a Borders league race before to come along to this session, as it will give you a good idea of what the courses are like, and what distance most races are (normally between 5-6 miles). This will be run around the Norton 5 route (Roy’s old training run).

We shall have pacers running the route at 7, 8, 9 & 10 minute miles. The majority is off road, but high viz vest’s are a must, and head torch (although not essential) would come in handy.

We shall meet on Thursday 11th October on Tudor Road, Manor Park, Runcorn WA7 1BD for 6.25pm, and start the run at 6.30pm prompt.

We really want people to understand that Borders league races are not elitist, they are for everyone at the club, and the good thing is they are free of charge. It would be great to see some new faces, and also some of the Helsby and Frodsham crew head over to sunny runny for the evening.

Any questions feel free to contact myself or June

That’s all folks

Cheers
Fitzy

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