Helsby RC weekly round-up 22nd to 28th May 2017

Hello Green Army

Some serious mileage gone on this week, mainly at the park runs, but some good reports come in this week, go get a brew, take a seat and enjoy.

So first of all lets welcome new club member, Katie Lord, welcome aboard, hope to hear you shouting “green army” at a race soon. Maybe we could also do a little feature in the blog in the near future on new members and what their interests are, and maybe for the new members we can do little feature on existing members and their interests. Let me get back from my jollies and I will sort something out.

Tim Palmer has asked me to remind everyone of the below.

“Hopefully you will have received an email about paying your subs giving the amount and a link to pay. If you haven’t, please contact Tim Palmer on tim@timjenny.me.uk. If you have, please can you pay as soon as possible. If you have and have paid, thank you very much.”

 I have now signed up again and it was very easy to use, brilliant work Tim, thank you

A quick message from Jackie;

Last weeks AGM went well and was well supported. Thanks to those who were able to come and for the many suggestions and comments about our club.  Full minutes will be circulated soon but the two most important highlights are:–
Our new club constitution now allows the club to nominate Honorary Life Members. So congratulations to Joe Beswick and Andy Smith on becoming the first life members for services to the club
and your committee for next year are:-

Chairman      Jackie
Secretary       Phil
Treasurer       Jo
Men’s Captain – Colin T, assisted by Paul F & Chris F
Men’s Vice captain – Mario
Ladies’ Captain – June
Ladies’ Fell Captain – Laura
Head Coach – Joe
Press Officer – Carol S
Social Secretaries – Dave and Lesley
Half Marathon Director – Laura
Assistant Half Marathon Director – Michelle
HCSC Representative – Betty
Border League Co-ordinators – Chris F and Vanessa
XC Co-ordinators – Janet R and Paul F
Sandstone Trail Organiser – Ben

Sandstone Trail Assistants – TBA
Webmaster – Steve R
Stats – Donna and Ian L (with Ben and Susanne Fletcher taking over)
Welfare – Jane A and Ivan
Calendar Co-ordinator– Tim P
Kit Co-ordinator – Donna

            Blog Writers – Colin T, Chris F, Jim J, Gaz
Cheers and thanks and welcome to another year of HRC and the #greenarmy!
Jackie
Also if anyone would like to help us do a blog or 2 or just a guest appearance every now and again let us know, it would really help us bloggers, send in your name to helsby-race-reports@outlook.com
Sandstone trail race director Ben Williams doesn’t get to run our favourite ultra, so he decided on a crazy 100 miler instead, thanks for the report Ben.  
For anyone I’ve not already bored to tears, I did the LDWA 100 mile event – actually 102 miles, and almost 11500 feet of climb, right around the North York Moors. The event started at noon on Saturday and entrants had until Monday morning to complete, with no stops longer than two hours allowed. I entered as a runner, but to be honest was reduced to walking from about 40 miles. The checkpoints were brilliant as always on these events, and were particularly welcoming overnight.

I was expecting a mental as well as physical challenge, and there were some ups and downs. I’d set a target time in my mind, and when it became clear that I wasn’t going to achieve it I felt like giving up. But then I decided that as I was halfway round and was physically ok, I may as well stick it out and I’m glad I did, even though I was reduced to walking. Of the 509 entrants, 151 retired so I’m glad I had the mental strength to keep going. I finished just as darkness fell on Sunday night.

Walking through Saturday night, and seeing first light up on the moors at 3am was amazing, as was walking through a thunderstorm. Some of the climbs up through moorland were brutal though.

Massive thanks to Serena who supported me all the way and looked after me when I finished, and massive respect to Ste Wigs who had to pull out at 25 miles through illness but turned out on Sunday to support me.

Ben

Back after his motorbiking travel Richard Hankins got stuck into the Manchester 10k on the back of the terrible atrocities the week before. 

The Great Manchester Run is according to Wikipedia the third largest mass participation sporting event in the UK (after the London Marathon and the Great North Run). It is also very much a corporate events with live TV coverage and an elite race alongside the mass participation event. I have to say it is the opposite of the sort of races that I prefer, low key, low price, club organised events. However, a group from work were running to raise money for the Christie Hospital so I joined in this year.

It turned out to be a poignant event for Manchester coming at the end of a terrible week and in some ways representing the city’s resilience and return to normality. The organisation is stunning – the whole south of the city centre is taken over and largely pedestrianised. Armed police were everywhere (they had been drawn from across the UK). With in excess of 30 000 people running it is necessary to marshall them into different waves. In this respect I was lucky, I was in the first wave and was able to secrete myself very close to the ‘Fast Club Runners’ who were starting at the very front. To do this however, I had to be lining up on the start line 40 minutes early which was ok on a warm dry day. At the start there was an enthusiastic applause for the emergency services followed by a very moving minutes silence. Some guy then read an annoying poem before we were off.

Even at the front I spent the first 500 m stuck in traffic – with some runners comically out of place. Its is not a pretty race, taking in Old Trafford and Trafford Park but it is pretty flat and fast. There were bands, DJ’s and an excellent and enthusiastic crowd along the route – it made running an experience. The finish on Deansgate was also thorough planned and executed. I ran a PB at 39:09, Carol Shaw came in at 59:52 and Damion Baker at 57:10. As a Mancunian I was pleased to be there this year and to be part of Manchester’s response to terror – if mega events are your thing this is probably as good as it gets. Personally, I think I still prefer the Sutton 6!

Congrats on the PB Richard

Over to CBH to give us a little report and then a bigger report about the dragon’s back race which he actually took 5 days off work to complete….nutter! You choose which one you would like to read, I’ve had to read both for spell checks!!

 

Little report

Did the dragon’s back last week. It also afforded me the honour of raising over £2k including gift aid so far for Head Injured People in Cheshire (they helped me in my recovery).

I was rather concerned about this one given the impact it had on me last time, putting me in A&E the next day for x-rays and suspected stress fractures to both shins. This time day 1 was changed; it took me 10 hours rather than over 15 which had an enormous impact. By day three I was confident enough to race. The heat wave made life very difficult out there for many; resulting in a drop out rate of over 50% (standard for this race!) however I managed to finish running and could not be more pleased over all.

 Day 1 highlight: Crib Goch… and the fly through below me in the Ogwen valley of a Hercules and 2 hawks

Day 2 highlight: Running off Diffwys with Neil Talbot… and the Rhinogs, never forget the Rhinogs

Day 3 Highlight: 4 strawberry splits for £1 … and racing the second half

Day 4 Highlight: Running it all… and the slush puppy in the pub at the end of the day

Day 5: Highlight: Running alongside and keeping pace with Jez Bragg whilst eating a pork pie… Running it all

 I was 20th overall, had an amazing 5 day journey and still feel quite spritely! I can’t recommend the race enough, tough, you need to prepare, but now very much doable. Who’s up for 2019?

Big report

Dragon’s Back 2017.

Last week I went out for a bit of a run across the spine of mountains in Wales known as the Dragon’s Back. This is a 5 day event which is roughly 200 miles in length, 2 Everest’s in climb and, more importantly, descent, over rough terrain. In many places the mantra of ‘think like a sheep’ rewarded me with a better trod than the purely rough ground alternative.

 This was my second time taking on the DBR having completed in 2012. 2012 took everything I had to finish and I am not convinced I ever really recovered properly…. But there is something about this race that just grabs my attention and draws me back in. Starting the race I didn’t know if my previous experiences would be a help or a hindrance; mentally knowing how much further there was to go, not needing to finish, etc.

 Day 1 – Conwy to Nant Gwynant (Via the Carneddau, Glyderau and Snowdon ranges)

We started off from the Castle in Conwy after a stirring wake up by the local male voice choir. A few familiar faces appeared including Jimmy O’Hara, luckily we bumped into Jimmy early on and it was great to have the support. The conditions appeared to be great for running, but turned out to be deceptively close and really difficult to cool off.

 Naturally we all started out too fast, having felt like caged animals for the last 24 hours. I finally managed to catch up with Carol Morgan (a good friend of Fitzy and me from the Ring of Fire, plus I ran a good chunk of UTMB with her) and we spent the day together. Coming off the Carneddau we were treated to an air show as a Hercules flew below us through the Ogwen valley followed by two hawks; it was as if the organisers had put it on specially for us.

I was feeling really out of sorts. Food was going in ok, but not great, my temperature had been worse, but wasn’t great either, plus the lack of water had left me dehydrated despite carrying two litres with me. This continued across the Glyders and I decided to take a slightly different line to Carol to Pen-y-pass which cost me 5 minutes. By the time I caught Carol we were half way to the base of Crib Goch on the PYG track. Scrambling up was a real highlight, but sadly the ridgeline was clagged out. Didn’t stop me running with a huge grin and taking out two further competitors who were clinging onto the ridge.

 The technical running continued but I arrived in camp following a few frustrating errors that cost me at least 15 minutes and I’d dropped a further 10-15 by slowing up on the final bits. I was thrilled with the day though as I’d expected 12 hours and had done it in just over 10. To put this into context, 2012 had taken me over 15 hours as the course was different and had 1000m more climb as well as extra distance.

 Day 2 – Nant Gwynant to Dolgellau via the Moelwynion and Rhinogydd.

We awoke from our tents to find clag from ~150m; with it forecasted to continue I chose not to put on suncream or take my sun hat. Running out from the camp I passed Caroline (3rd overall) and we ran together through the clag over Cnicht and to the base of the Moelwyns, then took different lines before linking up again as we crossed to the Roman steps and the start of the Rhinogs. By this time the weather had changed and was scorching…. So much for the forecast.

 I continued to really play with the mountains, some lines worked, some didn’t, but I didn’t care as I had one of the greatest days in the mountains I have ever enjoyed. A clear day in the Rhinogs is a pleasure indeed; as I ran off the final summit (Diffwys) with another friend, Neil Talbot, I kept trying to tell myself I still had a good distance to go, but my head wasn’t listening. By the time I arrived at the camp it felt like I’d done an extra day! A wash in a cold stream was transformational though… as were the salty chips with mayo!

 Day 3 – Dolgellau to Pumlumon; via Cadair Idris, Tarrens and Pumlumon.

Day three starts with a stiff ascent to the Cadair ridge, but is certainly an easier day mountain wise…. It makes up for it in extra miles instead. Again the morning saw the ridgeline clagged out, but this time I had made sure I put on my cream and sun hat ready for the afternoon. The heat had been intense from early on Tuesday and the mercury was set to rise again… boy did it!

 I was lucky to catch an error from Penygadair early enough to mean it only added ~10 minutes to the day, but crossing the ridge was noticeably easier than I remembered it. That first day in 2012 had really taken its toll, so running this freely was a real delight. Once again I’d hooked up with Caroline by accident at the start, but we proved to be a really great partnership once again. With the Tarrens down all I could think about was picking up a Solero in Machynlleth. I was to be disappointed.

 Arriving at the petrol station to find there were no Soleros was a major blow, but 4 strawberry splits for £1, 3 bags of jelly sweets and a coke sorted me out. I discovered the key to distance running in the mountains is actually just running happy. My friend James ‘Pup’ Harris had shown the way on day one; nipping into the Café on Snowdon to get a can of cider for the technical crossing to y llywydd. That’s an approach I think Fitzy would be happy to adopt.

Having lost Caroline due to spending too much time finding and eating food I eventually left the drop bag point with my stereo on and the bit between my teeth. Getting into a rhythm I nailed the remaining trail section. Catching Caroline and Wouter (the flying Dutchman) then shooting past and really pushing it. I’d started to race.

 Day 4 – Elan Valley & Drygarn Fawr

Having arrived at the finish spent the night before I had failed to take care of my camp admin. Starting day 4 I realised I was going to be off the pace. My good friend I’d known since meeting and sharing a Bob Graham round in 2012, Carwyn had been forced to withdraw from the race with a torn calf. I was gutted for him. The race means so much to him I was actually lost for words as I knew everything would sound trite. His running partner Sam had asked to start with me so I naturally obliged.

 The mercury was pushing upwards again and I was struggling in the heat. It’s my least favourite of the days as the ground is tough and there aren’t really any mountains. Wide open spaces give plenty of time for contemplation and I was feeling a little sorry for myself. Still managed to nail the few lines that I knew and Sam really pulled me along the ‘10K road time trial’ at the end of the day. Finishing next to a pub and a river was a huge winner… especially when they serve slush puppies. My order of a Slush, a coke and a shandy went without a bat of an eyelid – clearly standard in these parts.

 In the evening a huge blow was dealt as time ticked on and Pup had not appeared. He finally arrived in bits. He’d had a similar injury to the one I’d suffered in 2012; his shin just refusing to play ball anymore. Day 5 was starting with a trip to the hospital for him to x-ray for a suspected stress fracture. Bad times.

 Day 5 – Carmarthenshire and the Black Mountain

Day 5 had been absolute hell for me the previous time. With both shins in agony I’d refused to give it in. I’d spent the first part to the drop bag almost entirely in tears. I had not looked forward to this bit at all as 30% of the day is on road and was pretty bland in my memory. How wrong!

 It was another scorching day and my word was it beautiful! Stopping in Llandovery for a coke, Feast ice cream, two pork pies, a bag of space raiders and a huge bag of jelly sweets cost me at least 15 minutes as I got caught behind an old lady doing her weekly shop… it was worth every minute. Getting back going and trying to catch up with Sam I demolished the feast, space raiders and pork pies whilst miraculously managing to keep pace with Jez Bragg. We subsequently leap frogged each other until getting to the beautiful Usk reservoir and the drop bag.

 Finding myself able to use Jez as a target pacer was beyond a surprise, but the week had taken its toll on him too in the form of knee tendonitis. Eventually the elastic snapped and Sam and I finally summitted onto the beautiful Black Mountain ridgeline. It’s a home run into the finish from here; it’s a very long one, but you know you’ve finished – it’s the victory lap. Even the serious heat didn’t detract from the beauty, although that was boosted by an ice cream van and two ice creams (one for each hand). It did leave me with cause for alarm as I sensed a national crisis in Wales… I’d been to a petrol station, a local super market and an ice cream van and none of them had stocked Soleros. It’s a scandal brewing, that’s for sure!

 In the end I was 20th, not that I was ever concerned about my finish position. My aim had been to finish with more dignity than last time and to be able to run all the way. I’m pleased to report that I absolutely accomplished my mission. The perfect end to the best running holiday anybody could have.

Once again more than 50% had failed to finish despite the route being known in advance, the first day being a 1/3 less and everybody being issued with a GPS trace prior to the race. It’s fair to say this race eats its young, but I’m yet to find anybody that has entered and not become deeply entranced by the challenge. 5 days of the best mountain running around. Perfect organisation. Incredible experience and camaraderie… it deserves its legendary status.

A little video from day 1 

This gives a flavour of day 1: https://youtu.be/3SliYGpdjPk

I think you will all agree CBH is pretty good at this ultra stuff, but so are his reports, and now everyone understands why i constantly moan about him saying he talks too much whilst out running with him. Total respect, although a Guinness would be my choice not a cider!

CBH

CBH 2

Park run seen runners out in Runcorn, Warrington, Chester, Delamere, Keswick, Ellesmere Port, & Widnes. Full consolidated results below

http://tinyurl.com/kvq2x25

That’s all for this week folks, happy running.

Helsby RC weekly round-up 8th May to 14thth May 2017

Hello Green Army

A bit of sad news to start the blog this week. Former club member Albert Berry, 73 years young, passed away earlier this week. Lots of lovely comments have been posted on the Facebook page and we want to send our thoughts to his family and friends. A sub 30, 10k runner in his prime Albert was a very talented runner, but very modest at the same time. He made everyone new to the club very welcome on club nights, and he loved the social pint and a chat afterwards. He will be missed.

Albert’s funeral will take place at 1pm on Wednesday 24th May at St Michael’s R C Church, St Michael’s Road, Ditton, Halton, Widnes WA8 8TF, and afterwards at St Michael’s Rooms.

Albert

Some good news now, our very own Joe Beswick has been given Honorary Membership of the Fell Runners Association, both for his running exploits in his earlier years and now his support. This is another achievement to put on his running CV, very well deserved Joe, be sure to congratulate him if you see him, I’m sure he will tell you a few stories about his exploits.

 A message from Betty

Mersey Weaver District Scouts are fundraising their way to Norway for the world’s northernmost jamboree in the Arctic Circle, The Helsby Community Sports Club, have teaming with up to organise a Fundraising family fun day on 3rd June

Our fun day on 3rd June Helsby Community Sports Club is shaping up to be a great day. Alongside the family fun fair, climbing wall, and birds of prey display from LORD of the WINGS, children’s soft play area, dog show with Vets Helsby and vintage tractors, Go Ape have confirmed they will be attending with a couple of instructors and swegways, there will be demonstrations from Deva Cheerleading Academy – Chester and, Filipino Eagles, Childrens Martial Arts, face painting from Party Faces, lots of community groups have signed up to have stalls, the sporting sections from the club will be providing taster sessions, there will children’s story telling with SHOUT OUT BOO 2 and lots lots more

Scouts Helsby Family Funday

Park run seen runners out in Runcorn, Chester, Delamere, Ellesmere Port, Conwy & Widnes. Full consolidated results below

http://tinyurl.com/kvq2x25

Geoff Collins sent in a report on the Thurstaston Summer Multi Challenge race 9th May.

Seven Helsby runners entered the race this year up from two last year, but sadly we had no ladies this time. Wirral and Merseyside clubs were well represented among the 194 finishers but not many from the Cheshire clubs. Weather conditions were much better than last year with a nice sunny evening and dry conditions. However Colin and myself managed to get an age category prize!

This is a really cracking good multi terrain race. Just £4 to enter starting in the same place as the September one by the caravan site. The usual shuffling backwards, forwards and sideways to allow cars past took place before the race could start. The course takes you towards the slipway down onto the beach and back to Heswall rather than Caldy.

There is just over a mile of running on the beach which was quite wet in places, I think for me this was the best bit of the race glorious in the setting sun and the views across the Dee estuary. Just before the sewage works you head off the beach on a track and climb up to a narrow road past a few houses heading towards Broad Lane. This continues as you cross the Wirral Way on a bridge heading up towards The Dales the next off road section. The unwelcome sight of steps going up comes into view! Then it’s a bit of a loop round the wooded Dales before yes you guessed, more steps going down again! Back to the road and onto the Wirral way finally onto the grassy headland dodging the rabbit holes to the finish. I was frantically trying to catch Tim on the closing stages of the race.

Many thanks to Christleton High School Art Dept for the photo

Results

1 Phil Robertson Wirral AC U30M 34.01 the winner

11 Colin Bishop Helsby (1st 055M) 37.37

44 Davyd Michell Helsby U40M 42.45

57 Jim Jones Helsby O50M 43.48

103 Tim Igoe Helsby O30M 48.41

110 Geoff Collins Helsby (3rd O60M) 49.35

138 Chris Morgan Helsby O60M 53.19

139 Chris Igoe Helsby O50M 53.27

Geoff Collins

geoff.docx

Bargain at £4 if you ask me.

Debbie Read sent in a report for The Llangollen 10k trail race

The Llangollen 10k trail race was recommended to me by a running buddy who did it last year – I’m passing the baton and recommending it to you.

The most beautiful 10k trail run in the UK is the heading on their website, and while it is undoubtedly very pretty, personally I’d class it as a multi terrain as there’s a fair bit of road in it.
“Welsh undulating” it starts in the sports field next to the Dinas Bran Leisure centre starting field and after a lap and a half of the grass running track we headed out past the leisure centre, UP the first stretch of road (having done the fell race last week I was starting to worry) then back DOWN into the sports field and DOWN onto the canal, ALONG for a couple of kilometres. Then it was UP a lane, OVER a bridge, UP a track, ALONG a track. At this stage the leaders were starting to pass me on their way back to the canal. UP a field with long grass, AROUND the field (grass still long – hard work I can tell you). DOWN the field onto the track – my turn to pass those on their way up, ALONG the track, DOWN a lane and back onto the canal (drink station) After a couple of kilometres and seeing the car park and hearing the finish on the other side of the canal we passed the 9k sign “that can’t be right” said the bloke doing battle with me but it was – OVER the bridge, UP onto the sports field, UP onto the road, DOWN the road to the leisure centre, back onto the sports field and 300 metres on the running track to finish where the Town Cryer rang everybody across the finish line.

Limited to 500 runners (sold out with a waiting list), a well organised, well marshalled race.

debbie read

Just the mention of Dinas Bran would scare some of us off doing this, but I must admit stunning scenery in this neck of the woods.

Good to see Andy Smith back running after a lengthy spell out with injury, Andy sent in this report

Whitehaven Habourside 5k

My word, is nothing flat in this corner of western Cumbria ? For those of you wondering how much ascent you can get in 5k road race, the answer from the Whitehaven Harbourside 5k is in excess of 200 feet ! On a sunny, but somewhat breezy, spring evening last Tuesday, 136 runners of all abilities lined up on the cobbles of the harbourside in Whitehaven. This gives a nice flat, fast, traffic free start to the race…

Now Whitehaven sits in a natural bowl on the coastline, so once off the harbour, the only way out is up.  After half a mile round the harbourside the steep climb begins past the distinctive Candlestick Chimney, one of the last few remains of Wellington Pit.  This is a sufficiently steep climb that the race needs two lead bikes : one to the foot of the climb, the second taking over when the leaders reach the top. The path snakes round the Candlestick with engraved flagstones underfoot lamenting the passing of the pits which had brought so much employment to the area, whilst also acknowledging how hard and dangerous the work was.

Climb over and the runners are rewarded with fine views over the Irish Sea with the coast line carrying on to St Bees Head (starting point of Wainwright’s Coast to Coast route). Our curent focus is a little closer to hand in the form of the preserved pit head winding gear at Haig Pit Mining Museum, which forms the half way mark and turning point. One 180 degree turn around a traffic cone, and we are heading back the way we came. This time with views to the north and the wind farm off the Galloway coast, across the Solway Forth, just visible in the distance. The evening sunlight just catching their sails. Somehow, the steep descent back to the harbour didn’t seem to give as much back to tired legs going down as it had extracted from them coming up and once back on the cobbles of the harbour it was the usual story of just trying to keep it all together in the last half mile of a tough 5k as I sought to sprint to the finish. With that 200+ feet of climb in the early stages, this was never going to be a PB cpurse, so I’m happy with a finishing time of 23:26 and 47th position. The winning times were 17:38 for the men, 20:42 for the ladies.

All in all, a fun little race. Traffic free round the harbour and over cliff top paths and surprisingly scenic, given that apart from a handful of preserved remains, there is no other evidence in the landscaping of the industrial past of this small coastal town. Definitely one to keep in my diary for next year.

Andy

Sounds like a great 5k, but where are you mile splits mate?

That’s it for this week, bye for now

Fitzy

Helsby RC weekly round-up 10th April to 16th April 2017

Hello Green Army

It’s hard work putting these race reports together seeing we don’t get that many in these days, come on help us bloggers out a little and send in a quick race report please, address as per usual, helsby-race-reports@outlook.com

A few notices of events coming up in the next few weeks and also 2 of our most popular races of the year that sell out pretty quickly, so get in there fast.

Tattenhall Tough Team is to be held on Friday 23rd June 7pm, it’s a brilliant event where you team up with 3 runners, and run the 9 mile course taking on the famous railway or stairway to hell as they call it. You can enter on the night in past years but it gets busier and busier so wouldn’t want anyone to miss out. I’m not organising it this year as to be honest it’s a nightmare to sort out loads of teams so I ask you all to sort out your teams and get the forms printed off and sent in asap. On Facebook we have started organising teams so if you are not on FB feel free to email me Fitzpatrick_chris@hotmail.com and I’ll let people know you are interested.

http://www.tattenhallrunners.com/our-races/tough-team-race/

Dearnford Lake relays is to be held on Thursday 13th July 7.30pm, again its teams of 3 and you all run as fast as your legs will carry you for 2 miles and then hand over to your partner to run the next and again for the last leg. This will sell out, so get your entries in fast. I know Bish and Jane have been helping organise via Facebook but again if you are not on FB email me again if you are needing to join a team.

http://www.whitchurchwhippets.co.uk/relay.aspx

This is what we have so far

Men – I have tagged as Helsby Men ‘A’, ‘B’ and ‘C’ are: –

 

A

Colin Thompson

Colin Bishop

Chris Fitzpatrick

 

B

Ian Rutherford

Ian Hamling

Ivan Davies

 

C

Davyd Michell

Jim Higgins

Paul Cunningham

 

Women

A

Joanne Lacking

Rachael Holden

Juni Swift

 

B

Rhea Howard – Armitage

Shan McCarthy

Gill Fitzpatrick

 

Borders League

 

It’s the last race in the borders league season next Weds 26th April, 7.15pm, to be hosted by Wrexham AC. Again a big turnout is needed please so we don’t incur penalty points. Both mens & ladies teams have done so well this season lets finish the season on a high.

 

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

 

Also, it’s Helsby V’s Felsby 1st leg, so whoever turns up (numbers are low at present) then just let me know who you want to run for as you will get points for your team. The 2nd leg is the Dinas Bran Fell Race on 3rd May. I really want to boost numbers at our fell races and this one is brilliant, more details to follow next week.

 

Park run seen runners out in Runcorn, Chester, Shrewsbury, Ellesmere Port, & Widnes. Full consolidated results below

http://tinyurl.com/kvq2x25

 

Over to the captain for the weeks only race report.

 

Our 4th road counter saw a sea of green vests lining up to tackle this lovely 5 mile route looping around the back roads of Mickle Trafford. This race in particular is what I love about club organised races, cheap as chips to enter, a fast course and a friendly rivalry and banter with all the local running clubs makes it one of my personal favourites.

 

The course itself can be a PB course if tackled correctly, it has a fast first 2 miles which is all down hill but you need to leave something in the tank for the slow drag back up to the finish. We saw plenty of PB’s from the troops with myself, Fitzy, Ian R, Davyd, Adam, Debbie Read, Tanya Downes (2 minute PB!) and I think Wiggo? all taking slices off our 5 mile PBs, there may have been more I haven’t heard about so please let me know if you got a PB. It’s also congratulations to Jane Ashbrook who is looking in fine shape for the London Marathon and had a superb run for first Helsby lady home. Carol Shaw had a fabulous run to win 2nd in her age group as did John Gallon who was 3rd and a little further down the field it was great to see Shan, Rebecca Gibson, Charlie, Emma Barnes and Chris Morgan all putting in a valiant effort to tidy up the Helsby pack.

 

Thank you to our support on the night, Louise Spruce, Michelle Gordon (and kids), Serena Williams, John Earlston, the Frodfather and of course Joe and Mario.

 

Helsby results below:

 

14 Colin Thompson 27:53

26 Chris Fitzpatrick 28:44

38 Adam Gordon 29:30

45 Ian Rutherford 29:44

57 Jim O’Hara Helsby 30:12

93 Richard Hankins 31:55

113 Davyd Michell 32:55

114 Christopher Murray 32:45

127 Jane Ashbrook 33:23

153 John Peaker 34:31

188 Gary O’Connor 35:46

202 Carol Shaw 36:27 (2nd in age cat)

218 Roy Gaskill 37:07

219 Debbie Read 37:03

255 Geoff Collins 38:51

257 Geoff Shaw 39:01

263 Christopher Igoe 39:08

270 Stephen Wiggins 39:16

307 Edward Roberts 41:15

318 Chris Morgan 41:45

331 Jackie Keasley 42:30

341 Tanya Downes 42:55

368 Shan McCarthy 45:02

377 David Wiggins 46:21

380 Emma Barnes 46:32

382 Rebecca Gibson 47:07

387 John Gallon 48:12 (3rd in age cat)

423 Janet Shaw 48:37

 

Full results here

 

https://wcac.niftyentries.com/Results/Essar-Chester-Spring-5

 

And last of all a special mention to Debbie Read, who had a couple of very successful racing results – a 5 mile pb at The Spring 5 and a WAVA pb (82.15%) at Chester parkrun – all just a few weeks before 60th!

 

She has put this down to the Castle Park Monday night sessions, “those hilly footpaths are hard work but I can honestly say I’m going to miss them throughout the summer – thanks Joe and Mario. I’ll be at the high school but it won’t feel the same”

 

That’s it for this week, good luck in all your up and coming races, especially the London crew

 

Bye for now

Fitzy

Helsby RC weekly round-up 13th to 19th March 2017

 

Hello Green Army

Not a lot in the inbox this week, so a quick mention to the fell and road counter’s coming up this weekend. Saturday see’s Felsby go to Llantysillio Fell Race, 11am start, 6.2 miles of grass, mud and probably lots of hills. Sunday will see us roadies head to Arley Hall for the Cheshire 10k, 9.30am start, which I am told is on a very fast course. It’s also mother’s day, happy mother’s day to all you mums out there.

Also whilst we are talking about Fell and road races, don’t forget Helsby V’s Felsby takes place again soon, email me Fitzpatrick_chris@hotmail.com if you want to take part. Basically we get as many to run the last borders league race on Weds 26th April in Wrexham, and then the following Weds we race again at the Dinas Bran Fell race near Llangollen. Just nominate yourself as a Fell or road runner, turn up and I will sort the rest out.

Park run seen runners out (and falling over) in Runcorn, Newbury, Warrington, Delamere, Workington, Widnes and Croxteth. Full consolidated results below

 

http://tinyurl.com/kvq2x25

 

A message from Jackie

 

A bit belated because I left for a week’s remote hut to hutting in deepest Norway early the morning after out presentation evening.

 

Here’s a summary of who won what. Thanks to all who made the evening and compiled the statistics. It was great too getting all the community groups that helped in the Four Villages together at the start of the evening to personally give out their donation cheques too.  I’ll put the video on the 4V website sometime soon. Congratulations to all category winners and to everyone who turned up to run in all our club counters last season, may it inspire you all to run a record number of counters this season too!

 

Roads Championship
Men’s Champion Colin Thompson
Men’s Runner Up Neil Finegan
Men’s Senior Winner Chris Fitzpatrick
Men’s V40 Winner Adam Gordon
Men’s V45 Winner Gary O’Connor
Men’s V50 Winner Dave Feakes
Men’s V55 Winner Colin Bishop
Ladies Champion Joanne Lacking
Ladies Runner Up Tanya Downes
Ladies Senior Winner Rachel Holden
Fells Championship
Men’s Champion Jim O’Hara
Men’s Runner Up Ben Fletcher
Men’s Senior Winner Chris Baynham-Hughes
Men’s V40 Winner Phil Roberts
Men’s V50 Winner Tim Palmer
Ladies Winner Laura Baynham-Hughes
Ladies Runner Up Sue Buck
Ladies V50 Winner Rachel Arnold
Cross Country Championship
Men’s 1st Place Colin Bishop
Men’s 2nd Place Neil Finegan
Men’s 3rd Place Gareth Boyd
Ladies 1st Place Suzanne Fletcher
Ladies 2nd Place Rachel Arnold
Ladies 3rd Place Christina Roach
Club Champions
Neil Finegan
Laura Baynham-Hughes
Mini Fells
Mens Winner Neil Finegan
Ladies Winner Suzanne Fletcher
Trail Series
Mens Winner Colin Thompson
Ladies Winner Debbie Read
Runners Runner
Jackie Keasley
Most Improved Runner
Mens Winner Adam Gordon
Ladies Winner Alison Halsall
Greatest Comeback
Gareth Boyd

 

The Border Leagues wards will be made after the tow final races are completed. Note we were able to give the club championship awards out because with two races to go Neil & Laura were uncatchable! Even more amazing!

 

Nesta says – Just wanted to let you know I raised £198 on Friday night!!! Really chuffed x   All for her Leukaemia London Marathon fund raising. Good luck to all in London.

 

Plus thanks for my Runners Runner votes this year, makes another one chuffed!

 

Over to the single race report of the week and it sounded like a cracker, Geoff Collins do tell us more…

 

Race Report Forest of Dean Trails Half Marathon – 19 March 2017

Richard Hankins and I headed down to Gloucestershire for the Forest of Dean Trail Half Marathon.  This proved to be a really cracking good value race.  It certainly exceeded my expectations in the search for a different half marathon experience, attracted by the good race reviews. Richard’s expectations were exceeded too, more about that later!

For those that don’t know the area, The Forest of Dean is 42 square miles of ancient woodland that has an industrial past.  It’s also quite undulating.  It forms a triangular plateau bounded by the river Wye to the west and North West, and the River Severn to the South.  The nearest large town is Monmouth on the other side of the River Wye.

The race is run by the local rotary club costing just £23 to enter. It starts near the impressive building called the Speech House.  Now a posh hotel, it was once the HQ for the area hosting the Court of Speech.  A sort of local parliament which managed the forest, game and mineral resources.  There is an abundance of wildlife in the forest including wild boar, deer and birdlife.  But the race safety notices didn’t include the boar his time!

Richard & I together with his friend Giles who kindly put us up, did the race with his running partner friend Claire and Colleague Jana.  We were very good moderated ourselves in the Dog and Muffler PH the previous evening, carb (over?) loading on the sumptuous food.

However Claire clearly didn’t seem quite so well prepared.  A late night out with lots to drink complaining she was totally hung over! I seriously wondered if she would start the race let alone be able to finish it!  But finish it she did in just over 2 hours!

The race was started by a local athlete and Paralympic medallist Andy Lewis who got gold in the first-Paralympic Triathlon event at the 2016 Paralympics.

The weather was fortunately dry but a bit windy but the course was quite sheltered.  The first mile of this race is on the road before you enter the forest.  The trails lead toward a steep downhill slope.  After that apart from two marshalled road crossings the course is entirely on really good trail surfaces.  With long sweeping curves up or down and few tight bends, this was a much cleaner and dryer race than some recent road races!  Road shoes would be absolutely fine for this course.  In short this was a well organised and very friendly race we really enjoyed, with a nice medal and the proceeds go to charity.

The early stages of this race were quite easy and quick with mainly downhills until mile 5.  Between miles 5 to 8 it’s mainly uphill, 8 to 10 is downhill and finally 10 to 12 uphill before levelling at 13 miles.  In total I reckon a good 800 feet of climb!  That last climb really finished me off!

Results (2,254 finishers).

1st male finisher Chris McMillian 1h 14m 39s

1st lady finisher Katherine Matthews 1h 24m 36s

97th Richard Hankins 1h 30m 56s

691th Geoff Collins 1hr 52m 19s.

helsby 1

 

Star performer on the day was Richard finishing in the top 100!  A fantastic achievement for what is quite a challenging half marathon course, when the first finisher’s time was 1hr 14m.  Richard was only 2 mins slower than his Village Bakery time!

The Rotary Club organise another trail half in September if anyone is interested see www.forestofdean-halfmarathon.co.uk

 

Well done chaps

 

That’s it for this week, good luck in all your up and coming races

 

Bye for now

Fitzy

 

 

 

 

 

Helsby RC weekly round-up 13th to 19th Feb 2017

Hello Green Army

Busy week for a lot of us, a few plugs before we get onto the race reports.

The forthcoming Borders League Race on Sunday 5th March is nearly here, although we have most positions now filled, it would still be great to have another 1 or 2 marshalls or people down there cheering us on or out on the course, and if you fancy running it remember the more the merrier, would be great to get good numbers out. I might be bias but it’s going to be a great day.

Don’t forget it’s the Helsby beer festival on 4-5th March, and it’s only a fiver to get in. If you are going on the Saturday night then make sure you can still run the next day though

thumbnail_beer-festival

A message from Jackie

The next night out will now coincide with the annual road, fell, trail, cross country & club championship presentation evening on Friday 10th March starting 7.30 down at the club. Our annual awards, buffet evening and disco with Chris spinning the discs to celebrate. Your first drink is free on the club!!!

Lesley will be in touch soon organising our bring your own buffet which always works well. Anyone with a perpetual trophy please can you bring them down the next couple of Weds (please give to Joe or Mario).

Thanks

Jackie

Right over to a few race reports starting with Phil Tomkinson’s who was out running at the Village Bakery Half.

The first road counter of 2017 was the Village Bakery Half Marathon, which took place in Wrexham on Sunday morning. I hadn’t done the race before but in the weeks leading up to it I’d heard a lot about its fantastic PB potential, a reputation that is well deserved as it’s certainly a very flat and fast course. This led to some great performances as several members the Green Army turned PB potential into PB reality. Two that really stood out were Adam Gordon and Richard Hankins, who both managed to knock about 4 minutes off their previous bests, finishing in 1:22:43 and 1:28:22 respectively. I’m particularly keen to draw attention to Richard’s effort as I effectively acted as his pace maker until he surged away from me at mile 8, so I’d like to claim a little bit of reflected glory. Ian Rutherford was originally given a time of exactly 83 minutes in the provisional results, but following a somewhat suspicious one second adjustment, has now been credited with an impressive sub 83 clocking.

An added bonus at the end of the race was that Davyd had acquired two cakes made by the club’s resident baker Jane Bishop. Exactly how this had happened was unclear, but it seemed to have somehow resulted from a Helsby vest mix up that occurred at Clarke Gardens a couple of weeks ago. As usual the cakes went down a treat, and prompted jealous looks from other runners clutching their Village Bakery Sourdough Crumpets.

Overall, it was an excellent, well organised event that I’d definitely recommend. Thanks once again to Joe and Mario for cheering us all on. The Helsby results were as follows:

Pos

First name

Last name

Chip Time

Chip Pos

Gender

Gender Pos

Category

Category Pos

65

Chris

Fitzpatrick

1:20:04

65

Male

64

Vet 40

17

103

Adam

Gordon

1:22:43

103

Male

99

Vet 40

23

105

Ian

Rutherford

1:22:59

105

Male

101

Vet 40

24

195

Derek

Morris

1:28:01

193

Male

184

Vet 40

40

206

Richard

Hankins

1:28:22

199

Male

195

Vet 45

24

239

Philip

Tomkinson

1:30:05

232

Male

224

Senior Male

118

336

Darren

O’Connor

1:34:44

337

Male

299

Senior Male

144

360

Davyd

Michell

1:35:46

357

Male

320

Senior Male

154

420

Ian

Hamling

1:38:16

421

Male

370

Senior Male

174

563

Paul

Cunningham

1:44:50

565

Male

477

Vet 45

76

688

Geoff

Collins

1:49:19

699

Male

557

Vet 60

19

769

Rachael

Holden

1:53:19

779

Female

162

Senior Female

53

821

Stephen

Roach

1:55:19

824

Male

634

Vet 40

126

822

Nathan

Davies

1:55:06

817

Male

635

Senior Male

273

939

Lesley

Feakes

2:00:18

954

Female

249

Vet 50

23

1303

Tanya

Downes

2:25:08

1297

Female

461

Vet 40

92

Full results can be found here: https://cutefruitevents.niftyentries.com/Results/Village-Bakery-Wrexham-Half-2017#

Congratulations must also go to Davyd, keeping the cake untouched until after the race, not sure I would have done the same!

Gareth Boyd was out and about getting lost on another ultra-marathon in the Brecon to Cardiff ultra, he even had time to stream Facebook live whilst he was running which was quite amusing. Over to Gareth

Sunday

Woke up at 4.50am. Left hotel at 5.30am and headed off to the finish area. Once here, I joined the majority of other runners queuing to get a coach that would take us to the start line at Brecon. The race was due to start at 8am but start time was delayed due to toilet shortages – only 2 loos for 250 + runners 😳……I ended up having to use the ladies.

The first 6 miles ran alongside the canal before taking us up into the Brecon Beacons. Thankfully the weather was kind (just some drizzle). Much of the scenery was stunning – unfortunately some of it was dreadful – think burnt out cars #Merthyr

The winning time was 5.26.42. I finished in 114 out of 223 in a time of 8.56.02 – not great but ok

40 miles is 40 miles Boydy, respect!

Sunday also seen the last Cross Country race of the season, which has seen a mixed bag of results for us this season, mainly due to clashes with other races. Over to Bish for a summary.

This Sunday saw the last race of the XC season, as always a tough mud leg sapping course – 4 laps around Birchwood Country Park. I have to say I think this is the worst conditions I have seen Birchwood for many a season thankfully the weather held out. The green army was a little depleted with 3 men and 4 ladies turning out, however this said we didn’t do too badly, ladies finished a respectable 5th place for today’s race with the men finishing 13th.

However despite not having full teams for some of the races overall finishing places for the league are:

Helsby A Ladies….7th place with total points of 73

Helsby A Men …..9th place with total points of 72, just 1 point behind both Delamere Spartans and Knowsley Harriers

Well done and thanks to all who have taken part in this seasons XC, Spikes are now in storage!!! Thanks to Andy Smith for photos and support and as always to Jane for support, finish tokens and cake.

Bish fails to mention a great 11th place finish for himself as well. Well done mate

And finally parkrun

Runcorn, Colchester, Warrington, Delamere, Ellesmere Port, & Widnes, with Joanne Lacking being 1st lady home at Pheonix Parkrun, full consolidated results below

http://tinyurl.com/kvq2x25

Bye for now

Fitzy

 

 

 

 

 

Helsby RC Weekly Update 9th – 15th Jan

Hello Green Army

It’s only right that we start with the #4vhm. Yet again another tremendous event was put on by Laura and the team, too many names to mention but for every one of you who helped in some way, thank you. I haven’t seen one bad comment on social media and everyone I have talked to gave it a big thumbs up.

I asked for as many race reports to be sent in and i would include them in the blog, and we got a massive two reports come in. Well done Ivan and Emma for taking it seriously. I would like to put in some of the best comments from members of our great club that they stuck on social media.Highlights below…

“I didn’t run but Everton had a rare win can I send you a report on that” #collectorsitem

“Shouted green army at start. Fitzy went off fast. Finished. Was cold. Traffic awful, must have been a race on somewhere. Came back to club to move some barriers and unload a mucky van. Then if that wasn’t enough had to drive to Ellesmere Port to pick some muddy ginger twonk up”

“31 Helsby Running Club runners with 10 PBs (Ian Rutherford, Tim Palmer, Davyd Michell, Neil Fergusson, Matthew Painter, Kate Mann, Emma Barnes, Claire Morton & Danny and Danielle Ryder)”

“I turned left at mile 10 and the weather turned and spat in my face. Even the Frodfather looked shocked”

A few more serious reports from Ivan and Emma below.

This was my 10th 4VHM, and possibly the wettest and windiest one I’ve ever done. Despite natures best efforts, i was truly amazed at the amount of runners that turned up to run, what i think, is one of the best races around. Great Green army shout and we were away.
I don’t know why the first hill always surprises me in the first mile, as it forms part of 2 of our winter runs, that said the crowds were fantastic all the way out to the back lanes. Myself and darren had a bit of a battle for a few miles, and he certainly kept me pushing on. Great to see some familiar faces from the club out on the course shouting support, and it really does give you a much needed boost when you’re suffering. I’m sure i saw Paul Frodsham twice, or he’s got an identical twin? The last two miles as always are almost enjoyable, especially the vocal support from the group at the golf club. Andy R , and Tanya i think? Personally, i was pleased with 1.28 as not raced much this last year so hopefully this will be a good starter for more races in 2017, if only to stop Fitzy having a dig
on Facebook. Way off a PB, but its reminded me how much i enjoy racing. Greeeeen Armyyyyyyy!!!!

So in summary..best race around, great support,no PB, weather terrible.

Superb Ivan, hope to see you at a lot more starting this Sunday 🙂

First time running the course  – conditions were not the best. In fact, there were times I thought the marshals & helpers deserved a medal for being out there in the cold & rain!
Lovely route, but that wind was a bit of a pig in places!! Support was great! Lots of encouragement from the green army  both on the road and from the sidelines.
This time last year I said I’d never do a half…. I enjoyed it so much, I might just do it again.
Time 02:13:34

Brilliant Emma, whatever next, a Marathon?

A list of full results below

http://results.sporthive.com/events/6224154364987981824/races/401072

NAME BIB CATEGORY GUN TIME CHIP TIME
Colin Thompson 660 MSEN 1:18:34 1:18:33
Danny Ryder 397 MSEN 1:20:52 1:20:49
Chris Fitzpatrick 1302 MV40 1:20:58 1:20:55
Neil Finegan 669 MV40 1:21:43 1:21:37
Ian Rutherford 1336 MV40 1:24:42 1:24:39
Ivan Davies 34 MV40 1:28:52 1:28:41
Darren O’Connor 425 MSEN 1:28:59 1:28:34
Alison Halsall 689 FV45 1:32:25 1:32:13
Tim Palmer 510 MV50 1:33:44 1:33:16
Christopher Murray 26 MSEN 1:34:15 1:33:49
Jane Ashbrook 1759 FV40 1:36:36 1:35:55
Davyd Michell 1755 MSEN 1:37:44 1:37:33
Alastair Rough 81 MSEN 1:38:10 1:38:01
Gareth Boyd 419 MV40 1:40:16 1:39:19
Stephen Riley 91 MV50 1:42:44 1:42:23
James Gray 695 MSEN 1:43:42 1:42:46
Danielle Ryder 396 FSEN 1:46:27 1:45:03
David Feakes 224 MV55 1:47:57 1:46:07
Kate Mann 747 FSEN 1:48:41 1:47:43
James Higgins 1338 MSEN 1:48:56 1:48:45
David Madders 1286 MV40 1:51:54 1:51:12
David Sconce 469 MSEN 1:55:23 1:54:55
Neil Fergusson 917 MV60 1:55:31 1:53:46
Lesley Feakes 223 FV50 1:56:13 1:54:23
Suzanne Fletcher 1222 FV35 1:59:09 1:57:31
Geoff Shaw 228 MV60 1:59:29 1:57:39
Matthew Painter 1133 MSEN 2:01:24 1:58:43
Rhea Thomas 1346 FSEN 2:05:00 2:02:51
Emma Barnes 236 FV40 2:15:43 2:13:34
David Wiggins 1651 MV55 2:18:58 2:17:51
Claire Morton 1021 FV55 2:25:25 2:22:46

helsby-rc-1

Caption competition. Send them in to helsby-race-reports@outlook.com

Winner will be picked next week by whoever is on the blog….and wins another pair of #4vhm socks

helsby-rc-2

Wiggo was steeling from the rich and giving to the poor whilst he did the Sherwood Pines Park Run, Bish was coming in 2nd in Widnes, and other runners were at Ellesmere Port, Chester, & Delamere. Full list of consolidated results below

http://tinyurl.com/kvq2x25

Nothing else race wise to report on but it’s a big weekend for the Borders League and Cross Country teams on Sunday, and we have another clash in fixtures.

The borders league takes us to Deeside, 11am Start, post code CH5 4BR, 11am start, 10 men and 4 ladies needed please. For any newcomers, feel free to come along, all abilities are welcome and they are free to race in, just turn up with your vest on, on the day to count.

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

The Cross Country is being held at Runcorn Town Park, 10am start, 6 men and 3 ladies to count, again, just turn up in your green vest to compete. all details on steve saunders website

http://www.stevesaunders.co.uk/openingframe.htm

That’s all for this week, happy running.

Fitzy

 

 

Helsby RC Update 12th – 18th Dec

Hello Green Army

Not a lot to report on currently with it being the Christmas season, but if anyone or anyone you know would like to help out or Marshall at the forthcoming 4VHM on Jan 15th then please email laura@baynham-hughes.com , as we are still looking for volunteers to help out on race day.

We had park runners at Warrington, Chester, Delamere, & Penrith, full list of consolidated results below

http://tinyurl.com/kvq2x25

Sunday seen the last Cross Country for the year take place at Arrow Park, and we managed to get 6 gents and 6 ladies to the start line which meant no penalty points were incurred at what is a very difficult time of year to get to. Great performances from Colin Bishop and Neil Finegan seen them come in 9th and 18th, whilst the ladies team did well on the day with Christine Roach coming home first, followed by Debbie Read and Rachel Arnold.

The men came 9th and ladies 11th, which means the men sit joint 8th and ladies joint 11th overall. Runcorn Town Park is next up at the end of January. A full list of the results below

http://www.stevesaunders.co.uk/openingframe.htm

As i said not a lot to report on which means i can’t mess the blog up this time…can I?

On behalf of all the bloggers, myself, Colin, Gaz and Jim, have a great Christmas and New Year.

Fitzy

 

Helsby Racing News 21st-27th November 2016

Hello Green Army

So sorry for the late round up this week, Father Chris has been busy with his Elf antics, although there’s not much to write about, it’s been a quiet week, however we have a very busy week coming up.

A few notices first of all

We have the Borders League @ Birkenhead, Cross Country @ Otterspool, and Cardington cracker fell race, all on Sunday 4th December.

Anyone wanting to meet up from the club house I would advise 9.45am for the Borders league, and maybe 8.45am for the cross country.

The post code for the Borders League is CH43 8SQ, See link below for full details.

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

Paul Foster has sent in a mesage about the Cross Country

CHANGE OF VENUE RACE 3 SUNDAY 4th DECEMBER.

 
Please note the new venue is Jericho Lane L17 5AR – the football pitches towards the bottom of the Lane on the left.
Also note that there is limited parking on Jericho Lane and Otterspool Drive, so please try to car share wherever possible. The post race refreshments and results will be in the Cellar Bar at Aigburth Peoples Hall, L17 0DJ which is back over Aigburth Road and next to Sefton Park and is sign-posted (about 5 minutes walk).
The start of the race is 11.00 am to avoid a clash with the Santa Dash. Please advise all your members of the changes.
Also NOTE we are not sure if you can wear spikes yet…so worth bringing two pairs just in case

Also, my mate Boydy is doing a talk on how to not get lost on an ultra, see below for details; 

 Wed 7th Dec Gareth Boyd talk entitled Where’s the bike Son? 200 miles on the Trans_Pennine Trail! On this summer’s UK coast to coast Ultra, guaranteed to warm you up and make you feel tired & exhausted.

Our talks follow on from our club training run in the Helsby Community Sports Club bar, starting as soon as we have “showered”, recovered, bought drinks and had a bite to eat, at about 8:30pm. The club will provide food to help sustain us (chip butty season is upon us with the cold nights!). To help with the food order please let Lesley know by at least the day before if you are coming along davidfeakes1234@btinternet.com

At our last talk the London Marathon Draw took place and Steve Wiggo & Jane A were the lucky runners drawn out the hat. Good luck to them and anyone else training for Spring Marathons. 

gareth

Also a message from Betty about the Helsby Festival this weekend

If your little Elves fancy joining thi Saturday’s  Ho Ho Helsby parade,
meet at Vicarage Lane, St Pauls before 6:00pm. Festive dress and prams allowed!!!
I plan on wearing my Helsby Hi-vis vest and Santa hat!!!
Sort of a Santa Dash all welcome – the road will be a full closure so the fast
ones can race ahead if they like!!

There was also a bit of confusion about the Helsby Christmas Party on Saturday 10th December, as this clashes with the Helsby Community Sports Club Christmas Party. These are separate events, the Sports club event is ticket only at £25 including a meal.  Ask at the bar if you fancy it, however i think the majority of us will be heading into Frodsham starting in Helter Skelter at 7.30pm for a night of fun and singing as per usual. Christmas jumpers compulsory unless you wear your Helsby vest.

For any new members who haven’t experienced a Helsby RC Christmas Party make sure you come down you will be more than welcome, they are great nights out.

So onto the only race report of the week, from last Saturdays Cross Country Challenge at Sefton Park Liverpool, from moi. 

A lot us us panicked about getting to the start line on time for this one due to the bridge being extremely busy, but we all got there just in time, although Ian Rutehrford looked whiter than daz white after experiencing Davyd’s driving in his new car. On what was a very cold day, with lots of fog around Sefton Park, it was a perfect day for running with Olympians Andy Vernon, Callum Hawkins and eventual winner Andrew Butchart, and a strong ladies line up with past winner Jemma Steel towing the line, who also won yet again on the day.

It really is great to see these professional athletes do what they do best and make it look so easy. The mens race consisted of 3 laps of a pretty flat field, with a little mud, but nothing as bad as Skem which was much harder, reckon we would take a few Olympians out if they ran a course like that.

Rachel and Suzanne put in good performances for the ladies whilst Col T, Ben and Bish made up the top 3 for the men. This if you like a bit of cross country is the one to do, it’s great being at an event hearing the roaring of the crowds, and seeing the mass start must be amazing to watch as well. Well done to all who took part

Results below

http://www.britishathletics.org.uk/EasysiteWeb/getresource.axd?AssetID=148464&type=full&servicetype=Attachment

That’s all for this week enjoy your running

Fitzy

 

 

 

 

 

 

Helsby Weekly Blog 10/10/16-16/10/16

Hello Green Army

Big mention to all the warriors who turned up last week and again this morning to my Runcorn Town park XC recce, this mornings run consisted of really cold temperatures compared to what we have been used to recently and everyone was moaning which was a good sign as we trundled our way around 5 muddy and enjoyable miles. If i haven’t put anyone off yet then its a 6am meet up with a 6.05am start at Runcorn Ski slope car park every Friday morning, all speeds catered for. Head torch is recommended.

Whilst i’m talking about training runs, we hold a session at Castle Park, Frodsham on Monday nights 6.30pm, which consists of hill repeats, tempo and interval training. Club nights as per normal are on Wednesday nights at 6.30pm from Helsby Community Sports Club, and Thursdays our very own Roy Gaskill runs a 5 ish mile road run around the Norton 5 route, 6.30pm again from Tudor Road, Runcorn. Plenty to keep you fit through the winter months.

Also, for anyone new to the club, and old who haven’t tried them before, this Sunday see’s the start of the cross country season, and similarly to the Borders league races, they are completely free of charge, you just turn up in your club vest and run…simples. The venue for this weekend is Clarke Gardens in Liverpool, 10am start, post code L19 5NF. These really are brilliant races to take part in.

Right, onto the serious stuff…..PARK RUN!

Full list of consolidated results below, but we had runners out in Warrington,Chester, Ellesmere Port, Widnes, and Wepre (where on earth is Wepre?)

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

First of this weeks reports comes in from El Capitano, over to Col.

Myself and Ivan took part in the inaugural Manchester Half Marathon on Sunday and I must say I was very impressed with the organisation of this race. Parking was a doddle at Old Trafford (spaces are pre-booked online), the course was actually pretty flat for once and the support from the marshals and crowds of people who came out to cheer on the runners was brilliant. We also had a choir half way around the course which is a first for me. The only thing the organisers couldn’t control was the weather, the heavens opened up as we were lining up for the start but it is Manchester after all so is to be expected! 🙂

Unfortunately both myself and Ivan were suffering from the dreaded man-flu, although you would never had known, we both soldiered on without any fuss 😉 We were a way off our best times but I would recommend this HM to anyone chasing a PB, I think after the success of this event it will be become a very popular fixture in the north west. Also big thanks for the shout out of Green Army! from Daz O’Connor who was dressed as a giant banana and running the opposite way, great to see him back running again!

Helsby results below:

135th Colin Thompson 1.20.38

481st Ivan Davies 1.29.54

 Full results here http://www.manchesterhalfmarathon.com/

 

Good work by mummy’s brave little soldiers, men just get on with stuff don’t they, even with man-flu. What i really wan to know is why was Darren dressed as a giant banana?

It was the Fell relays last Saturday up in Loch Lomond, Scotland, and for anyone who hasn’t done them before i would really recommend it having done the previous 2 years, even as a road runner I really enjoyed the days out, this time it was overnight stays and a party afterwards, sounds boss! Over to fell running legend CBH (who I always beat by the way!) 

Ben and I took on the navigation leg for the fell relays this year and even before I got into the holding pen I knew there was a good chance of issues. I use a thumb compass and the strap was set for thick gloves…. Clearly I’ve not been out Nav-ing since last Christmas then! Steve had got us off to a cracking start and with our two fastest runners out on the course Ben and I got into the holding pen and scrutinised the map. It was a huge bonus to get the map before we started as we were able to take some time to review the macro route choices we had, identify attack points and thus not make a silly mistake/ not miss an obvious feature we could use to help us in the thick clag.
Max rounded the corner putting on a show looking calm as if he’d been out for a jog whilst Jimmy looked like he was hanging on his chin strap. Max confessed later he was just working it for the crowd and he was really dying on the inside, but they had just scorched the course gaining almost 50 places and were 27th fastest overall. I felt I was in for a very long day as I was really struggling to keep up with Ben on the track, but in a flash we were at check point one and in for a steep climb.
Our original plan had been to take the fence line and then drop down and up (route 1) but once on the terrain we had a rethink and decided to contour around. The rough ground evened out our speeds a bit and confidence grew as we started ticking off our collecting features. As we zeroed in on CP2 I suddenly convinced myself we’d overshot it which lost us a few minutes as if we’d have kept going we’d have pretty much hit it spot on. Thankfully we saw a number of teams lost and even split in the clag so we cracked on for CP3.
CP3 turned into a nightmare. We dropped into the wrong re-entrant and lost a lot of time desperately searching in zero visibility. Once we’d finally got it we ran on a bearing straight to CP and would have hit it spot on if we weren’t temporarily redirected by Nicky Spinks. At this stage though I was doubting my micro nav so another few minutes went by. The ground was rough, big peat hags and tussocks galore – both Ben and I were immobilised in bogs on several occasions. Nav was spot on for the final two and we were then on the race in for the finish. To our shame we arrived just as the mass start went out – gutting as we’d lost time on three CPs despite being within 50m of each one. Lesson is to practice micro nav more as the macro is pretty spot on. Still, it was a great day out and the support was awesome.
The evening do was terrific as was the postrace food, lots of familiar faces and some new friends made. Think I tucked into the beers a little bit too much though :oO
Hope you are well,
CBH

 

I couldn’t make the Fell relays this year because it was my most important race of the year, and it didn’t disappoint, Hellrunner, which is described as the UK’s toughest half marathon (not sure about that). 13.1 miles of mud, hills of hell, lucifers lido, and the famous bog of doom. It didn’t disappoint yet again, i’ve done this every year since it started in 2009 and love it, my best finish to date coming in 11th place in 2hrs 4 mins, and i think i was the only representative this year, although Tanya took a cracking photo pf me in the bog of doom below. I would love to do something for charity next year, and get as many involved from Helsby RC as possible. Just think its like a long cross country race.

That’s all for this week, sorry it’s taken a while to send out. Happy running 🙂

 

Helsby Running Club Weekly Update (12/9/16 to 18/9/16)

Hello Green Army

It’s a busy one this week, lots going on in the Helsby racing world which is great to see and also great to read about, thanks to all the contributors, remember send your race reports into helsby-race-reports@outlook.com

Park Run – I said to CBH after seeing his 15,000 ft of elevation over the weekend (race report below), that my 22 ft of elevation in Widnes made me feel super human and he should check it out on Strava. Getting beaten by a 14 year old last week and pipped in the final straight last Saturday, may just push me over the edge. 1st place still eludes me, maybe I should knock the Friday night bevy’s on the head and give it a real good go, after all it’s a proper serious race after all.

We had runners out in the Chester, Delamere, Ellesmere Port, & Widnes

List of consolidated results below

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

Right enough about me and onto the good stuff.

Roy Gaskill kind of sent a report over via Facebook about the EHM 10k, over to Roy

A fantastic 10k EHM race in Warrington yesterday, quiet a few pb’s I hear, great to hear this. I also had a PB and a confidence builder I decided I had to pace this to what I am now, and not what I was a couple of years ago, and you know what it totally worked and when I finished I still had a bit to give, so I can build on this new pace starting at our first borders league 10k in Wales next month. Well done to all our runners in this race and our leading runner Colin Bishop in a good time considering he is injured, and our first lady finisher Joanne Lacking, followed by Rachael Holden, well done to everyone

Results for the 10k

http://www.chiptiming.co.uk/events/english-half-marathon-10k-2016/

Unsure if anyone did the EHM half marathon but here are the results as well

http://www.chiptiming.co.uk/events/english-half-marathon-2016/

Ian Rutherford took time out from social media to send over a report, thanks chief.

King John’s Castle Fell Race – Saturday 17th September.

The Raven Inn in the small but beautiful village of Llanarmon-yn-lal at 11am was the start of this Clwydian hill race where five members of the Greenarmy hit the start-line.

A small but competitive field assembled and started by race organiser Jon Linley who interestingly said that next year will be the last time he will organise the race and is pleading for someone to take this on; be such a shame to see this disappear from the calendar.

Within the first half mile is the quick scramble over the ruins of King John’s Castle which is nothing more than a large mound and the race then begins proper.  A great route of trail, open fell, hill running continues with many styles, gates and fences to contend with.  As ever the Joe and Mario support crops up in a couple of places around the course; towards the end I could hear in the distance the vocal encouragement each of them was offering to Neil who ran an excellent race finishing a very comfortable 2nd – great running again from the man in such wonderful form.

After a few navigational challenges the year before saw a few improvements to the course marking and apart from one of the young Buckley runners who I observed missing a style all seemed to get home the correct way.  Despite how the race is listed all of us measured this at around 5.3 miles and around 1,100 ft of climb – a great mini fell race!

Helsby Results Neil Finegan 2nd Ian Rutherford 14th  Janet Robertson 22nd  (4th Lady)  Suzanne Fletcher 30th  Sue Buck 35th

Thanks to Andy Smith for some excellent pics too!

helsby-1

 

Now following on from my 22ft of elevation, over to CBH for his 15ft plus 14,985ft, on what looked like a very scary course to us road runners, some stunning photos though

Salomon Glencoe Skyline 55KM, 4750M
What a weekend of running! As I was helping out with the event I was up in Kinlochleven on the Friday morning to help get ready for the first vertical kilometre (1km of vertical ascent, max of 5km of distance to achieve it. Uphill only). For me this meant moving a radio repeater around Munros around Na Gruagaichean, but for the competitors it meant and all out sprint to the top and was awesome to watch. I on the other hand looked like I was either going fishing or that I had the largest ever selfie stick as we’d forgotten to take the spanner to undo the mast.
Day 2 saw the first running of the Ring of Steall (29km, 2500m) and by far the best of the weather. I on the other hand was preparing for the Glencoe Skyline by… marking the route! 7.5 hours on the mountain in glorious weather was superb on the one hand, but not great race prep! It did afford me the opportunity to see my first Brocken Spectre though which was pretty awesome. The views were utterly incredible and they just go on… forever. Really magical.
The morning of the race was a rush. I was exhausted from a week of minimal sleep (away with work) and 2 hard days in the mountains. At the last minute I decided I needed to tape my heals and literally sprinted to the start line. The plan was to start slow and taper off. The first 10k was pretty standard trail running along the West Highland way, but in the light it was really special. Arriving at the climb/ scramble (the route takes in curved ridge – exposed grade 3 scramble) we hit a bit of a traffic jam which was frustrating. Faster runners don’t necessarily make faster climbers and in the interests of safety there were large sections where there was no overtaking; still we could take in the incredible views whilst they were still there.
The “running” climbs were brutally steep; the mountains in Glencoe are genuinely different to the rest of the UK. Even when on a ridgeline, each peak seems to have a long descent before a sharp ascent to the summit. It’s something you rarely get in Snowdonia and certainly very rare in the lakes; it’s like everywhere is Tryfan! Taking in the section I marked was great until the mistle descended and the majority of runners reached for their windproof. Almost 30 countries were represented at the event as it was a world series race.
Killian Jornet wasn’t there as he’s been looking at the speed attempt on Everest, but his sister was and I ran with her for a while… until we got to the descent where she showed without doubt that she was a skier – dropped like a stone, but in total control. The 800m straight descent to the road was brutal and I’d argue it was the most dangerous part of the course as the wet stone was treacherous. I had a plan though as I jumped straight onto the scree and surfed down.
The reward for our efforts so far was a 8-900m straight climb back up so we could take on the Aonach Eagach ridge. Like curved ridge, this was a scramble (grade 2) and very exposed. The mistle and rain had made the rock wet and enabled me to move through the field a bit as some racers struggled over it. All that was left were a few marshy bumps and back onto the West Highland way for a sprint finish. The last few K’s flew by as I was dreaming of food and a shower!
With a totally stacked field of world class talent it was always going to be tight at the front. Won by Jon Albion (who had played cat and mouse with Tom Owens all race) in 6:33. I, however, was nowhere near that, finishing 81st in 10:46. I went for the adventure and certainly got it. Amazing weekend.
Pics:
From the VK
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The view!
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Fishing with the radio repeater about halfway up the VK course
From the skyline course from when I was out course marking:
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Brilliant work from Chris considering he’s just back from UTMB as well. Good clip on this link as well
Couple of reports come in for the Sutton 6 from Geoff and Richard, which was another road counter

Race Report Sutton 6 Sunday 18th September

Surprisingly Just 6 green vests took to the streets of Guilden Sutton for the Sutton 6, despite this being a club points counter.   This year race numbers were down anyway, possibly because of other races elsewhere.  There were just 129 finishers this year, rather than the 200 (or more) plus in previous years.  A bright sunny day beckoned just a tad warmer than ideal for running.  This year the timing chips were on the numbers, no danger of leaving them behind!

Helsby’s team of 5 gents and one lady were nevertheless up for the challenge and looking forward to racing close to home with no worries of being stuck in traffic.  And with good support from the crowds for the local runners.  Also for some the chance to run past their own houses!  As always we were grateful for support from Mario and Joe.

The course is two laps of Bellue Vue Lane, Guilden Sutton Lane and Hare Lane before heading past Chester Rugby Club along the A51 and return up Wicker Lane to the Village, where there is a slight incline to the finish line by the Village Hall.

Results for Helsby were:

9th Colin Thompson 35m 59s

16th Neil Finegan 37m.04m

35th Richard Hankins 41m 12s

68th Dave Madders 47m 36s

72nd Geoff Collins 48m 38s

86th Tanya Downes 53m 25s

Amazingly Neil managed to knock almost a minute off his PB from last year… despite doing rather well at the King John’s Fell race the day before! Richard taking over 4m off his time last year, and Tanya who was well pleased clocking a new PB, 1m off her last years’ time and picking up a spot prize!

We all enjoyed the race, Col thought it was bit harder than he was expecting, I certainly enjoyed the competition between Guilden Sutton runners, as Val Ornsby (Chester Tri) Claire Mallon, Richard Batterham (West Cheshire) and myself battled it out!

Geoff Collins.

I believe the Sutton 6 has been a long term favourite of Helsby runners having its origins as a six mile race back in the 80’s. A small local race centred on Guilden Sutton, attendance was a bit down this year on previous years due to the numerous clashes in the calendar. It is an undulating course passing twice under the motorway (and twice over it) with a steady ascent from the lowest point which is around the 8K mark and a steep 50M just before the finish. It isn’t a stunning course (although nice in places) but the vibe of the event makes up for that. A fun run follows the main event and the local Scouts provide tea and cakes to the participants. A relatively small turn out from Helsby for the penultimate roads counter: five men (lead home by Colin in 9th) and one woman, Tanya, who came 2nd in her category. Quite how Neil ran in the King John’s Castle fell race the previous day – apparently stopped and waved for the cameras at 9K and got a PB I will never know. Full results, below:

Richard Hankins

Thanks chaps, always a popular one but as stated lots of races this weekend clashing

 

And final race report from Ben Williams who was out plodding (30 miles!!!!!!)

I plodded the LDWA Open to Offas event on Saturday, a 30 mile circular route with over 5000ft of climb. It starts from Cilcain and climbs steadily to the north end of the ridge before following the Offas Dyke path (with a few deviations) over all of the major Clwydian hills, and includes bits of most of the local fell races. I’d been with the leading pack up to Moel Arthur, but I couldn’t keep up with them on the climbs after that. After crossing Foel Fenlli (of ‘the Druid’ race fame) the gradients ease off for a while, but by then my legs were wrecked and I was struggling. The homeward stretch has one more sting in the tail, Pothole Crags (of ‘Up the Beast’) and then flattens out for a nice run in past Loggerheads and along the Leete Path. The weather was perfect, almost too hot at times, and I got through a lot more water than I usually would on these events. As usual there were plenty of well-stocked aid stations on the route, and it was good to see Ian Hilditch manning checkpoint 6.
I managed to take an hour off last year’s time, as did a chap who finished just behind me having done the same last year, and finished in 7h 39m.

Cheers
Ben

Once again Tim Palmer has provided us with a brilliant updated race calendar, please let him know if you spot any more races you want on here for others to know about

tim@timjenny.me.uk

There is an updated race calendar at: https://helsbyrunningclub.wordpress.com/2015-16-event-listing/

Dates for your diary

Macclesfield Half Marathon this coming Sunday, penultimate race of the road counters. entries still open I believe right up until the day of the race

That’s all folks…Happy running green army!