Helsby weekly round up 3rd – 16th Sept 2018

Hello all

We have two weeks of reports for the price of one this week, bargain! Thank you so much for all the brilliant reports, makes our job so much easier and thank you to some of our newer members who have taken the time to write one.

Lots to report this week so lets get started…

Firstly a big warm welcome to new member Kevin Smith who joined us last Friday, we hope you enjoy your time at Helsby RC!

We have Bingo night tomorrow night at the club house (21st September), please see the flyer below for details…

20180823_064750

Border Training Session

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

Cheers
Fitzy

North West Counties Road Relays 

Delamere, Saturday 8th September 

Report by Karen Horsley

On Saturday I had the dubious pleasure of running for my club in the North West Counties Road Relays, it was wet.  Very, very wet.  I was the anchor leg of the ladies B-team, which meant I was standing around in the rain for over an hour before I had to run.  The race was two laps of the mere (lake) on forest paths, so not a true road race.  Running last was hard because the field had spread out, so I was effectively running the race on my own.

I put in a reasonable first lap, with the rain streaming down my face and my feet squelching in my shoes, and buoyed on by cheers and encouragement from my club mates I began the second lap.  I was doing well (as well as I could anyway) but then the first wave of dizziness washed across my brain – this is something that happens quite often when I run – at which point I started putting in small walk breaks and kept going.  More dizziness, more walking.  And then ‘Sue’ overtook me, I have no idea who Sue was but I was determined she wasn’t going to beat me, so upping my pace a little I soon took back my place and carried on up a small incline and round a bend…

It was then I almost blacked out.  Big wave of dizziness, blurry/dark vision.  I was suddenly very unsteady on my feet and was reaching out for something to grab hold of, with memories of my previous concussion worryingly ringing alarm bells in my mind.  Fortunately, there were marshals on hand to guide me to the side and give me a drink of water, they said maybe I should walk to the finish line, I said that I’d be fine doing a slow-ish run and off I went accompanied by ‘a minder’ – actually a lovely lady from my club who had witnessed my wobble.

Finished the race in around 37 minutes and dizzily wobbled over to the club’s men who were still waiting to race, they looked after me very nicely, giving me something to eat and holding me up while I pulled some dry joggers over my dripping wet leggings.  Still feeling a little dizzy and, now that I wasn’t running, so very cold.  I weaved my way to the car park where hubby picked me up and I could thankfully remove my saturated shoes and socks.

Fast forward to 7pm and news that the results were online… and that ladies B-team had been recorded as incomplete.

So not only did I spend 2.5 hours in the pouring rain.
Almost blackout.
And still valiantly make it across the finish line.

But due to some administrative error my time hadn’t been recorded.

Guess who’s not very happy?

I’m hoping this can be rectified but for now I’ll simply say that every single person who ran today was a true hero!

For the club, both ladies’ and men’s A-teams came 6th for Cheshire.

Lake Vyrnwy Half Marathon

Report by Richard Hankins

In the brochure that comes with your number it says: ‘This race is an old fashioned kind of event, and these days is quite unique – it does not have a major sponsor and it is organised by real people volunteering their own time for the good of their community. Please do not expect a ‘Great North’ or similar type of commercial event. If you can understand the homemade-ness of this event you’ll have a great time!’ Presumably then, the GNR is organised by unreal people? Anyway, I think what they are saying is it won’t be a slick event….and it isn’t. The start is particularly chaotic – the start line was not clear and the pack had assembled across it. They had no speaker system and trying to get 1500 people to move backwards concurrently was a challenge. It also led to a lot of runners being out of place.

Once you’re away, however, the stress of arriving and getting started are soon forgotten. It’s an excellent natural course, uphill to the dam for the first mile and then following the shores of the lake to mile 12, with a fast descent to the finish. It is scenic, predominantly flat and well surfaced. The roads aren’t closed, but a one way (anti-clockwise) system operates. This isn’t ideal and prevents you taking the shorter route at times. I set off aiming for 6:30 miles with a dream of finishing in 1:25. I kept these up for 8 miles and then started to struggle dropping to 6:45 for the rest of the race and coming in at 1:26:50 – a new PB, although only seven second under my time last year. Col T was also there using the event as part of his prep for the Chester Marathon, he came in at 1:20:47.

It is a fantastic course and I’d say it is well worth the drive and minor irritations of the event. If you’re looking for a PB, the profile is perfect with downhill just where you need it. It’s my second year, I’d be surprised if I don’t go again next year.

Multi-Terrain Race 1 – Royden Park

Report by Fitzy

If you haven’t done these races before they are a must. £1 entry, 4-5 miles of of grass, trail, tarmac, sand, and mud, hence the name. Every Tuesday through September, although by the time you have read this the second one would have been and gone.

Low numbers turning up on this one, the men just managing to get a team out with 5, and the ladies only 2, incurring penalty points, we need 5 men 3 ladies. Unfortunately for Laura Sayer-Hill she turned her ankle on the course and DNF. I know she made a good recovery though so that’s the main thing.

Adam, as per usual storming around the course in an impressive 18th place followed by me, and Peter, and Vanessa coming in just ahead of Debbie for the ladies. Good to see you back racing again Vanessa.

Full results below

http://www.stevesaunders.co.uk/mt/2018/mtrace1_18.pdf

Guilden Sutton 10k 

Report by Geoff Collins

This year 14 Helsby Runners took part in the Guilden Sutton 10k on Sunday 16th Sept.  Formally known as the Sutton 6 this is the new name West Cheshire Running Club are calling it.  Also a club counter for us. It’s basically two small circuits round the village of Guilden Sutton passing my house and a longer loop continuing past the Chester Rugby Club down the A51 and returning back up Wicker Lane.  Annoyingly there is a little hill right at the end of the race.  It’s a fantastic good value race put on by a local running club with just 246 finishers this year.  Low numbers mainly because of the other races going on nearby.  I was also supporting our young friend Amy Batchelor running her first 10k.

Chris Fitzpatrick 35:24
Adam Gordon 36:48
P Tomkinson 36:50
H Cowley 36:58  1st lady
P Rodrequez 39:25
J Higgins 43:19
R Hough 44:08
R Gaskill 46:21
G Collins 50:06
S Woodward More 51:29
(A Batchelor 52:35 1st F U20)
C Igoe 53:55
S Wiggins 57:09
J Gallon 1:00
J Shaw 1:05

There were some outstanding performances and very quick times.  Fitzy and Adam getting PB’s, possibly Phil too, Hannah 1st lady finisher well done Hannah very close to our first three finishers!  I wonder if that’s why they got their PB’s!

Three Shires Fell Race

Report by Tim Palmer

I was the only Green Army runner in last Saturday (15th)’s Three Shires Race in the Lake District. Three Shires is one of the shortest of Long category Lakeland fell race (distance: 20km / 12.4miles climb: 1220m / 4003ft). Conditions looked good at the start as you were able to see the summits and there was even some sunshine; however early in the race, the weather settled into low cloud on the fells ensuring everyone had to navigate. It is certainly a race for those who like hills – the first main climb onto Weatherlam is a mile at 1 in 3; this is followed by three more major climbs. I finished 167th out of 233 in 3:18:46. The top three finished in under 2hrs with 1st and 2nd being decided in the final 100 metres. It is good race in a lovely setting – also the Three Shires Inn where the race starts and finishes is very welcoming.

Multi-Terrain Race 2 – New Brighton

Report by Fitzy

A much bigger turnout for Race 2 of the Multi Terrain last Tuesday, seen us head over to the beech at New Brighton. After Royden Park’s Forrest and hills, this week it was all about it being flat and sand, and lots of it. I was quite surprised just how hard the sand actually was, it was more like a road race, perfect for me. The top order did see some familiar road running faces at the front of the pack as well.

Before the race had started, I could see this little green dot in the distance, legging it to the start line, it just so happened to be Geoff Collins, arriving just as the hooter went off, and poor Geoff had 300 plus runners heading towards him, whilst he tried to join the back of the race. The first mile was a sprint down the beech, through a few puddles, and back along the tarmac next to the beech, which then took you into the local country park, next to Wallasey golf course. Up and down a few tiny hills, and back out onto the beech for just over a mile sprint finish. It was a short one, just over 4 miles but great fun indeed. It’s a pity it was cloudy as apparently the sunset there is great.

I was home 1st, followed by Adam and Peter, and for the ladies Laura Sayer-Hall was back 1st, Debbie 2nd and Helen Owens back racing again was 3rd.

Race 3 is at Wirral Country Park, followed by Race 4 at Arrowe Park.

Full results on Steve’s website.

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

King John’s Castle Fell Race, Llanarmon-Yn-Ial, a hilly 5 miles-ish

Report by Janet Robertson

We were lucky enough to have a perfect day for this race. The organiser reminded us not forget to look at the views before he set us off and I am glad he did as it is a stunning area. Cracking runs from all the Helsby runners. A big well done to Jane who was 2nd lady and 1st V40. Great scenery, friendly people, a lovely pub, free chip butties, and I came away with enough fruit and veg winnings for some fruity fell race art fun … all for only £5. What is there not to love?

Ras Cyrn y Brain

Report by Laura B-H

6 Green vests made the trip to Ponderosa on 2nd September for Ras Cyrn y Brain, our 10th Fell race counter.  This race has only been going a few years, but there was a reasonable turn out and it was the last in the WFRA’s north wales series. Starting by the Ponderosa café we took a steady climb up to the telephone tower, down the other side through the top of Llandeglla forest, and back around for another climb up to the tower and back down to the finish. A very runnable course and nice mix of terrain. Good showing for Helsby with Adam finishing 6thth overall and 1st V40. Great to see Chris H out on the fells and thanks as always to Joe and Mario for support on the course.

6 ADAM GORDON 00:52:05
16 BENJAMIN CROSSLEY 00:58:43
25 JIM JONES 01:01:10
31 LAURA B-HUGHES 01:02:34
55 PHIL GILLARD 01:09:04
60 PAUL CUNNINGHAM 01:10:30
74  CHRIS HATTON 01:18:50

parkrun

Please find the consolidated results for HRC at the weekly parkruns. A big well done to all member who took part in one and extra kudos to our Bish for a superb win at Phoenix Park, well done mate!

That’s all folks, thanks again for the reports, it’s great to see everyone running so well. All reports are to be sent to the HRC inbox – helsby-race-reports@outlook.com.

Thanks
Colin T

Advertisements

Helsby RC weekly round-up 13th to 19th August 2018

Hello all

Welcome to this weeks blog, we had three brilliant reports in the inbox this week, thank you so much to those who contributed, it makes our job so much easier.

Before we get to the racing news please find a message below from Janet with the confirmed dates for this seasons NWSL cross country champs.

For new members or those who have not done these yet, this is a great series of races which are free to enter, just turn up in your club vest. Each race is followed by a social get together with tea and sandwiches.

28 October Clarke Gardens
18 November Beacon Park
16 December Arrowe Park
13 January Runcorn Town Park
3 February Croxteth Park
24 February Birchwood

A big thanks to the organisers for trying hard to avoid clashes with other races. Other cross country events are:

Nationals, Harewood House, Leeds, 23 February Northerns, Pontefract Racecourse, 26 January Cheshires, Birchwood, 5 January

Liverpool and District Cross Country Races are already included in Tim Palmer’s amazing race calendar.

Chirk Relays

Report by Colin Bishop

Thursday evening saw several of the Green Army head over Chirk for 3 leg multi-terrain relay 2miles each. Helsby put up 4 teams 2 Male and 2 Female.

The 3 Cs first home for Helsby 4th place overall but 3rd in senior  mens category

Greenwithenvy …Ian, Davyd and Peter home in 12th place.

Helsbellies1…Christina, Laura and Carol home 2nd  in senior ladies category with Helsbellies2 …Debbie, Jackie and Vanessa 5th for ladies senior category

The course had a downhill start with few climbs and downhill finish over multi-terrain.

The relay also involved us carrying a baton which included our chip 😲 wish I could spell that the way Michael Johnson pronounces it. 😄😄😄 Fabulous scenery. Well worth putting in the diary for next year.

Results can be found here:

http://www.ticktiming.com/page3.html

Race the Train

Report by Sue Buck

I’d last done this race in 2015 when a few of camped to celebrate Jane’s birthday. I can’t remember whose idea it was to camp and run it again, but as I’d particularly enjoyed the event party afterwards, I decided to join in the fun and camp for the weekend.

Jackie and I had a relaxing morning before setting off to cheer Janet on as she ran the 10k.

Janet looked strong and happy as she came past us and beat the train!! Well done Janet!

The 14km is very much a race of 2 halves. The first 7 miles are on tarmac (first mile), followed by good farm tracks and footpaths, so it’s possible to run quite hard. The route then turns round and follows a muddy single track on the side of a hill, through some forest, the ‘bog of doom’ and a short traverse before rejoining the route from the 1st half for about 3.5 miles back to Tywyn.

The race is very well-organized, with water stations at a lot of the farms, well-marshaled, loads of support and has the feel of a big road race with a lot of cheering and high-fiving in the town. One for the diary for next year, although as lovely as the 14 miler is, the 10k covers the best part of the course!

I’ve not had a race go quite this well in a very long time and to be honest, I was not expecting it either as I was convinced that I wasn’t very fit for various reasons. I was worrying during the first half that I’d gone out a bit quick, but felt OK, so kept trying to ignore that nagging doubt. Just after the turn round, something weird happened and the endorphins really kicked in and I felt great – I clearly need a 7 mile warm up!! This feeling kept with me for the rest of the race!!! Was this down to the half a malt loaf I’d eaten pre-race???

Imagine my surprise at the after show party when I discovered I was first FV50!!! Jackie said she’d never seen me move so fast when I ran up to get my prize!!!

Well done to all the Helsby vests that ran. Richard Hankins was first home for the men and narrowly missed beating the train and Chris was first home for the women.

Full results here: http://www.racethetrain.com/results-for-2018/

Ellesmere Port 5k

Report by Richard Hankins

The Ellesmere Port 5K was the 9th of our 12 road counters for this year. A local club race around Capenhurst it has been on the calendar for some years. Last year number collection was an issue and the race started late, but the use of i-pad check in removed those issues. The race starts on the main road which isn’t closed before the runners line up and this makes the event chaotic at this stage. Once off it is a largely flat single loop finishing at Urenco, but very congensted for the first 500 metres if the start line melee leaves you out of place. Ten Helsby runners turned out, one of the best turn outs for a road event this year. The weather was fine with a bit of a headwind but times were not stunning with only one runner below 16 minutes. Chris Fitz led the team home in 20th place at 17:41. Notable performances also from Ian and Peter and a new PB for Rachael.

Overall, a convenient local race. But, never seems that fast and would definitely benefit from more loos!

 

Position Finish time Number First name Last name Net time Net position Club Club Position Gender Gender position Category Category position
20 00:17:41 230 Chris Fitzpatrick 00:17:37 20 Helsby Running Club 1 Male 19 Vet 40 5
48 00:18:41 267 Ian Hamling 00:18:37 50 Helsby Running Club 2 Male 45 Senior Male 29
58 00:19:08 233 Peter Rodriguez 00:19:03 58 Helsby Running Club 3 Male 54 Vet 40 11
81 00:20:01 156 Richard Hankins 00:19:53 79 Helsby Running Club 4 Male 73 Vet 45 12
97 00:20:33 106 James Higgins 00:20:28 99 Helsby Running Club 5 Male 87 Senior Male 39
111 00:21:02 270 Robert Hough 00:20:57 114 Helsby Running Club 6 Male 99 Senior Male 41
143 00:22:02 142 Trevor Lewis 00:21:53 143 Helsby Running Club 7 Male 119 Vet 45 17
148 00:22:23 268 Rachael Holden 00:22:18 151 Helsby Running Club 8 Female 26 Senior Female 8
155 00:22:32 39 Roy Gaskill 00:22:25 157 Helsby Running Club 9 Male 128 Vet 50 16
198 00:24:18 265 Geoff Collins 00:24:09 199 Helsby Running Club 10 Male 151 Vet 60 9
213 00:24:49 1 Chris Morgan 00:24:39 216 Helsby Running Club 11 Male 159 Vet 65 5
268 00:28:30 226 Gillian Fitzpatrick 00:28:16 268 Helsby Running Club 12 Female 80 Vet 35 13
283 00:30:18 228 Janet Shaw 00:30:07 283 Helsby Running Club 13 Female 93 Vet 65 2
305 00:35:49 11 Stephanie Charman 00:35:37 305 Helsby Running Club 14 Female 108 Vet 65 4

 

Birchwood 10K

And last (but by no means least 😉 please find a report from Fitzy below for the Birchwood 10k, his first outing in a Cheshire vest and well deserved! Over to Fitzy….

A handful of the green army headed over to the Birchwood 10k on a wet but warm Sunday morning. I had found out 3 weeks ago that this race was an Inter Counties race, and I had been selected for the mighty Cheshire. I think I had been picked maybe due to a few people being away, but was still over the moon to have been selected. Maybe they looked at my spring running times and hadn’t taken into account that all I have done for the past 3 months is eat and drink over our glorious summer.

Anyway, out of the 6 runners for Cheshire, I managed to break into the top 4 counters which would go towards us scoring. That was all i wanted to do, make sure I wasn’t last home, and make sure I got a counter. I loved the experience, but I said yes thinking i would get a free race entry and free Cheshire vest, I was wrong, I paid for the entry, and paid for the vest. I have since found out the fell lads got the vest for free and race entry….whats going on, I need to change over to Felsby no doubt.

Anyway we came 3rd, out of 3 counties ha ha, coming in behind Staffs and North Wales, with some really strong runners at the top end of the list, the Cheshire ladies however had a great run and came first, so well done to them.

Also well done to Peter, Ian, John and Karen, full results below.

http://www.spectrumstriders.org.uk/images/stories/striders_downloads/results/striders_races/10k2018/10k2018individualresults.pdf

Helsby men also came 6th out of 38 teams with a total time of 2:41:23

Chris Fitzpatrick 36:32

Peter Rodriguez 39:58

Ian Hamling 40:39

John Rossiter 44:14

http://www.spectrumstriders.org.uk/images/stories/striders_downloads/results/striders_races/10k2018/10k2018maleclub_v2.pdf

 

Parkrun

Please find the consolidated parkrun results below. Well done to all the Green Army members who took part in one.

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

That’s all this week folks, thanks again for all the fab reports, please keep them coming – helsby-race-reports@outlook.com.

Cheers
Colin T

Helsby RC weekly round-up 16th – 22nd July 2018

Hello all

Firstly a big apology for the lateness of the blog this week, there was some confusion on my part as to who’s turn it was to do the blog!

Without further ado here are the reports from last week, big thanks to Phil G, Chris Collins and Laura BH for sending them in.

Summer Handicap 2018

Firstly a big thanks to all the marshals, timekeepers etc.

The positions were as follows:

Name Finish position
Tim Igoe 1
Neil Fergusson 2
Thomas Atherton 3
Ben Crossley 4
Charlie Ashbrook 5
Peter Rodriguez 6
Jane Ashbrook 7
Paul Alexander 8
Chris Dodd 9
Steve Riley 10
Mike Barnard 11
Vanessa Griifiths 12
Gareth Boyd 13
David Smith 14
John Whitehead 15
Chris Fitzpatrick 16
Chris Hatton 17
Geoff Collins 18
Graeme Lloyd 19
Chris Igoe 20
Jackie Keasley 21

The times were as follows:

Position Name Minutes Seconds
1 Ben Crossley 19 3
2 Peter Rodriguez 19 14
3 Chris Fitzpatrick 19 23
4 David Smith 20 14
5 Tim Igoe 20 29
6 Gareth Boyd 21 4
7 Chris Dodd 21 45
8 Steve Riley 21 53
9 Charlie Ashbrook 23 10
10 Jane Ashbrook 23 17
11 John Whitehead 23 51
12 Thomas Atherton 23 53
13 Neil Fergusson 24 47
14 Vanessa Griifiths 24 55
15 Paul Alexander 25 0
16 Mike Barnard 25 37
17 Geoff Collins 26 50
18 Chris Hatton 27 42
19 Graeme Lloyd 28 14
20 Chris Igoe 29 13
21 Jackie Keasley 32 47

Snowden International 2018

Helsby RC Weekly Round-up 18th to 24th June 2018

Hello all

Welcome to this weeks racing news. Firstly a gentle reminder that all reports should be sent to helsby-race-reports@outlook.com if you wish for your race to be included in the racing news, we don’t generally look at Facebook as it’s too time consuming and it’s easy to miss reports on there.

Please find a message below from Andy Smith regarding the Frodsham downhill race on Sunday:

A plea for help. In addition to all our other race related activities, once again we have been asked to help out with  course signing, finish area management and results for the Frodsham Downhill Run at the Castle Park Festival this Sunday. We already have a trusty band of Helsby RC helpers, but would benefit from a couple more volunteers to help out. If you can spare an hour or two in the morning to help out in the park or on the course please get in touch – it would be much appreciated.

It’s a great family event and I know that a fair number of our members and their families take part, so a great opportunity to support them. Run starts at 12:30 and we’ll be setting up in Castle Park from about 9:30.

Cheers
Andy

Tattenhall Tough Team Challenge

A big thank you to Alison Halsall for her report, please see below…

“The Green Army were out in force again at the annual Tough Team Race. It was a gorgeous evening for it with six ladies team and four mens team taking part. They don’t call it tough for nothing but there are some wonderful views over the Cheshire hills with most runners complaining about the last long road section rather than the steep climb up the old railway track to the welcome of the Grim Reaper. There was support on the course from Mario and Joe (who popped up in the middle of the last field as usual) and it was great to see all of the Helsby teams running to the finish line together. Overall a thoroughly enjoyable event, the chilli, cakes and beer afterwards are great too! Oh and Helsby won the 1st vet ladies prize, a bottle of prosecco each thank you very much (Jane Ashbrook, Laura Baynham-Hughes and Alison Halsall)”

Pennine Barrier 50-mile Ultra Trail 

A fantastic report has been sent in by Ben Crossley for the Pennine Barrier 50 mile ultra, an amazing achievement, hat is fully tipped! Over to Ben…

“Friday 22nd June Paul Cunningham and I set off to the Dales in the ‘love machine’ (I’ll come back to this) to raise the bar to the next level in our running careers, to conquer….THE PENNINE BARRIER.

Ah yes! The ‘Big Bazza’, the ‘Penny-Barry’ an ultra-marathon trail run, consisting of 50 miles of hard hitting trail from Malham following the Pennine Way before joining up with the Yorkshire Three Peaks route.  

Of course it was going to be tough, we knew it was, not one bit of us was denying how tough this was going to be, but did we shy from the challenge.. NAH AH! Game on! Operation F’K ‘em had commenced.  

2pm there we were in the ‘love machine’ a white Citroen Rally – transit like van that had been DIY’d in to our HQ for the weekend. To be fair it had been done out quite well. There was a double gas hob, sink with pump action water dispenser. Two seat dinner area which folded into what would be my first bed of the trip. Then the further rear was a double bunk with, if I remember rightly, a throw like cloth backing of the Hindu God Ganesh.  

The vehicle had also plenty of vinyl on the outside, one in particular caught my attention and stayed with me. ‘THEY SAY YOU ARE WHAT YOU EAT. I DON’T REMEMBER EATING A F**KING LEGEND!!’  Superb! This was our home for the weekend and we loved it!  

I digressed. Ok so we arrived in Malham around 4:30 in the pm. Registered had our kit checked. Then headed for a little walk to Malham Cove followed by some grub and a shandy in the local boozer before retiring for an early night, in anticipation for the next day. 

4:30 in the am! It was time to get up. flapjack and Imodium in the gut, washed down with a couple of coffees and there we were, on the starting line bouncing ready to rumble.  

 Ben C

The race started at 6am. Front runners broke ahead from the start up to Malham Cove. This included the well-respected, West Chester’s Tom Booth and ultra-runners John Bottomly, Ken Sutor, Ben Hoyle, Aaron Reeves, Sally Ford, Mel Edwards and the ever too giddy for his own boots, Benjamin Crossley (ME).  

The idea here was to get a good start up the first climb of Malham Cove and not to be caught in the single lined traffic of the 270 runners. Once we broke out on the top of the cove, the first burst started to reduce, and the main front runners now started to make a hefty gap.  

We followed the Pennine Way up past Malham Tarn and up over them there hills to Fountains Fell. Which after a slow but steady ascent, the rapid descent was much welcomed, and I let gravity do the hard work while my legs just ticked over.  

A mile down the road was the first checkpoint. We were now 12 mile in and approaching the first of the 3 peaks. I quickly refilled my water supplies, grabbed a banana and a chocolate doughnut and hit the trails.  

Pen-Y-Ghent was as you’d expect… a motorway of people. We had to weave in and out of hikers, in fact it wasn’t just hikers, it so happened to be the Sikh Three Peak Challenge. 100s, if not 1000s of people trailing on for miles. It wasn’t till I got down to the viaduct in Ribblehead that the crowds really started to clear.  

By this point I was at check point 2. 21 miles in and starting to feel the run. It had started to get warm and I was going through water fast. I stopped at the check point for 5 minutes perhaps to refresh and have a little stretch. I had started to get a little niggle in my knee, I just knew it was down to my IT band being tight, so there I was in pigeon pose while trying to gasp the hot air in to my lungs.  

Feeling refreshed I set off towards what had been the most long winded ascent(other than Snowdon) I have ever tackled. Whernside. Eugh. It’s not so much difficult, its just long and boring, I just wanted it to be over. Even the company of single serving friendship chitty chatty you pick up on the way could not pull my head out of how much I was disliking this climb.    

Once at the top you had a clear view of the fells in the Lake District in the distance. Seeing views like this is what its all about. My head quickly cleared of negativity as I smiled to myself and muttered ‘this is f’king awesome’ .  

Happy again I descended Whernside, cheering hikers on that were climbing from the other side before arriving at the 3rd checkpoint. I’ll point out here I made a quick dash for the toilet at the local farm shop. It was the only time I needed a wee on the entire run. Your body just shuts down I’ve noticed while it concentrates on feeding blood to your muscles, rather than your organs. 

Leaving the 3rd check point, again fully stocked on water and snacks. I’ll just add here how important it is to eat on these runs. Despite how little hunger you may be feeling with your stomach shrinking but at the same time full of water.. you must eat. If there’s anything that’s going to get in your way of completing these challenges, it’s not intaking enough calories, and by this point I was most certainly feeling it. Shovelling pieces of pizza, chocolate muffin and cheese and pickle sandwiches into me yap. I carried with me protein bars and energy gels as reserves, and they all got eaten.  

Ingleborough, what a short but hefty ascent is that. You can’t see it from a distance but as you get closer, there is a vertical scramble staircase. Followed by about 40 ft of rocky terrain as you reach the trigpoint. WOW!!!  I was cream crackered at this point and starting to get very uneasy on my feet.  

I clipped my foot getting back down which almost ended badly TWICE. Once I was close to slipping off the side of the peak, which would have ended in a shredded Ben bouncing down the jaggered rocks. The second I was talking about how much of a pleb you’d feel falling in front of everyone, in doing so, I clipped my foot and started wind milling down the trail. It turns out I had the gods on my side both times and no dirt was eaten this time. Just a little shuck up and a lot more aware of my footing. 

Check point 4! And the 3 peaks had been conquered. I didn’t waste anytime at this checkpoint, knowing I only had 15 mile to go. I quickly refilled my bottles grabbed another banana and went on my way. I was gutted to realise there was still a nasty little climb going up towards Pen-Y- Ghent that we had to get up. eugh…. Why .. why more climbing.. I was starting to go through the motions here and complaining to myself while stomped up to the kissing gate. 

I turned round and couldn’t see any runners behind me. I knew I had made good timings and I was surely somewhere in the top 50.  This was my aim. I wanted a sub 11 and to be in the top 50, I want a gold medal. Not silver or bronze, but gold. GB Ultras award gold medals to the top 50, silver to 51- 100 and Bronze to anyone over that. My aim now was to hold my ground.  

As I reached the final checkpoint , which again I quickly just refilled one water bottle, I asked where I was in the race, to which the marshal replied 42nd.. “come on Ben. Home run now. Just get home”. I kept repeating this over and over in my head, while I picked off a couple of runners and seemed to be experiencing what could only be explained as the mind of someone with bipolar. I wasn’t sure whether I was happy, tired, warm, cold, sad, full of beans.. it was very confusing which all most ended terribly.  

1 mile from the end, Janet’s Fross, I lost my head. Everything started to spin, I couldn’t see straight, and I was starting to stumble. I franticly searched the pockets of my vest looking for some sort of sugar shot. I found two soggy extra strong mints. This was it!! This what I needed. In they went, and I walked for 5 minutes, before having a final push to the finish.  

I’d done it! Id completed the Pennine Barrier. I was greeted by Emma Marks, of GB Ultras and Macclesfield RC who handed me a GOLD medal while chattering ‘WHAT TOOK YOU SO LONG, WE’VE BEEN WAITING”. The feeling was unbelievable, I was so exhausted but so happy I just started hugging anyone and everyone I saw. 11hrs 5mins was my finishing time and I came 39th. 

The race was won by Ken Sutor with a new course record of 8hr 19 followed by Tom Booth 8hr24 and John Bottomley 8hr45.  

The top 3 ladies were Sally Ford 9hr44, Nicola Brown 10hr8 and Mel Edwards 10hr36. 

I almost forgot.. some gritty runners went back out for the 100 mile, breaking the barrier. This was won by the impressive Craig Clements setting a new course record with 24hr51, followed by Martin Rutherford 25hr05 and Alex McMann 25hr44. Seeing these chaps come home in one piece yet broken and still humble is just pure inspiration. This is where I want to be. 

As I sat in the van on the way home the next day my mind started to flood with thoughts. ‘If I can do 50 now, why can’t I do more’. This must be what goes through anyone’s head when starting out down this road…. Our only barriers are our own minds. Well, I believe I can.. the hills and trails are where I feel comfortable in life, why wouldn’t I want to devote my time into this (again) humbling sport. I want to see how far I can push myself, see what will break me.  

 I’m going all in…”

Moel y Gamelin Fell Race

“It’s no secret that I’m not a big fan of fell running, don’t get me wrong I think that as an event they are fantastic – cheap as chips to enter, always in stunning locations and they seem to always start and finish at a pub which is an added bonus! I have just never been a fan of the race itself, going up the hills is ridiculously hard and coming down is even harder, I’ve never quite got my head around it. You need to have an ability to switch off the fear gland in your brain and really let go which I have never been able to do as my tarmac slapping “don’t get injured” part of the brain goes into overdrive. I also struggle to pace them correctly and generally make a hash of it.

I promised myself that this year I would attend more of them to try and mix it up a little and get out of my comfort zone. I started with “Up the Beast” a couple of weeks ago but I had a bit of nightmare, I started well enough and was in the top ten but I didn’t respect the hills enough and slowly died a death and went backwards. It’s very different tactics compared to roads, I’m generally pretty good at pacing a road race but on a fell you can’t go off too quick and maintain a pace and I didn’t reserve enough energy on the flatter bits, I was determined to pace it better at the next one.

Moel y Gamelin popped up in my Facebook news feed and looked a great one to have a crack at, it’s 10 miles long with 2887 ft of climb and mostly on trail path. I’d never done such a long fell race before so I decided give it a go and then had to run around like a headless chicken borrowing various bits of kit off everyone (full kit required for this one, who ever needs to own a whistle??) Me and Lou loaded up the car and set off picking up Jane, Laura and Duncan Harris (Chester Tri) on route to the Horseshoe Bypass in Llangollen.

The race starts and finishes opposite the Pondersa Café and the mercury was pushing 30 degrees, probably not the most ideal conditions! A big thank you to Phil Gillard for lending me his fell shows before the start by the way, he pointed out that my road racing flats where probably not best suited to the rough and rugged terrain that was to come and how right he was! 🙂

The race started and as planned I went off very steady, the route starts on a grass hill and you quickly hit a gravel track for the long climb up to Moel y Gamelin, you then find a sharp decent which had me scrabbling for grip, thank god I had those trail shoes on! The route was very undulating, up and down up and down until around mile 4-5 where you get a bit of rest bite on flatter grassy terrain. I had managed to work my way through the traffic and here I saw Mario handing out water which went over my head, he mentioned I was in 10th place but the heat was starting to have an adverse affect on me at this point. After another mile a water stop appeared into view so I stopped, took on plenty of water and ate an energy bar, I lost a few places but the sacrifice was worth it as I was feeling more energised after this.

The route loops back and hits the gravel path again and after a short while the colossus of the final climb appears into view which is certainly the hardest, over 500 feet! I was glad I’d taken on some fuel as I was feeling pretty good here and only lost one place on the hill. After this it’s pretty much downhill and hang on to the finish where I managed to get 15th place which I was made up with. I thoroughly enjoyed the race, I’d paced it well and took on fuel and water where necessary and the views were stunning. A Helsby runner converted to a Felsby? Not quite hanging up those racing flats yet but I will definitely being doing a few more this year 🙂

Congrats to all the Felsby runners, especially Laura BH for getting second place (I think) for the ladies and first Helsby lady to finish. Adam also had a great run to bag 6th overall and first Helsby runner home. A big thank you to Louise, Joe and Mario for supporting us on the day also.”

No results out yet but keep an eye out here:
http://fellrunner.org.uk/races.php?id=5810

Col T

Parkrun

Please find a link to the consolidated results from last Saturdays parkruns, Delamere saw a superb second place from Derek Morris who is on the comeback after some time out with injury, well done mate and a big well done to everyone who took part in one.

That’s all this week, as usual please let me know if there are any results or reports missing and I will endeavour to update the blog.

Cheers
Col T

 

 

Helsby RC weekly round-up 21st to 27th May 2018

Hello all

Welcome to this week’s blog, a big thank you to everyone who has sent in a report this week, it makes our job so much easier! Please keep them coming to helsby-race-reports@outlook.com.

Before we get to the racing news please see a reminder below about some races next month which you may be interested in, these are all club counters.

Untitled

Edinburgh Marathon

Report by Richard Hankins

I have always said I’d Never run a marathon: the training trashes your weekends and the last 5 miles are hell I thought. However, after June Swifts efforts last year at the Edinburgh Marathon I thought I’d give one a go. The training was tricky due to the harsh winter weather and as expected destroyed many a weekend. It also compromised my holiday when I slipped on a long run and ended up in a Majorcan hospital. The marathon was at the start of the school hols and my wife has family in Fife so we were able to combine it with a holiday.

The event itself is really well done. It starts on the university grounds, passes the national museum and Scott monument before heading out to the coast. The weather was cool and overcast but with a 15 mph headwind from mile 5 to 17. The route follows the coast along a scenic old road past fishing ports and arcades heading due East. At 17 miles it diverts in a semi-circle through the grounds of a stately home and reruns on the same road in the opposite direction to finish in Musselburgh. The support was amazing with kids handing out sweets and oranges and bands playing. Loads of water stations and gel stations. I went off too fast completing each of the first three miles in under 7 mins. I then held steady at 7.10 for 10 miles and around the halfway mark hit my 7:30 target. By mile 18 I couldn’t hold it and the last five

miles each took over 8 minutes. They were hellish and I had to stop for cramp twice. I limped home however finishing in 3:25 about 5 mins slower than I hoped.

Finishing 7 miles from the start creates a further challenge. Miranda ended up getting an Uber to Musselburgh as the train was full. We managed to get a bus back but it took well over an hour. Overall a great race and fast and flat, but likely to be effected by coastal weather.

Image-4

North Cheshire 5k

Report by Debbie Read

Last Thursday saw the start of The North Cheshire 5k Grand Prix – a series of 5k races over 5 weeks around the Warrington/South Manchester area. The 1st race (my favourite) was set amongst the deer in the grounds of Dunham Massey on a beautiful summer evening. Just two green vests represented Helsby in the subtly challenging course. Davyd came home in 20:23 and despite tweaking my back gardening I finished in a time of 24:28, managing to get myself £15 prize money! (Since been spent on pain killers) The next race is on Thursday at Birchwood, mainly traffic free, entry on the night available.

FullSizeRender

Ras Moel Eilio

Report by Tim Palmer

A hot windy day in Llanberis saw 7 Green Army runners in Llanberis for the Ras Moel Eilio – a favourite with some Felsby. It climbs Meol Eilio at the end of the ridge that runs NW from Snowdon. It follows this for some way before dropping steeply (about 1/2 mile at 40% grade) back to the valley with a fast (if your legs are still working) run for a couple of miles to the finish. The run along (and up and down) the ridge offers fanatastic views.

The race winner did the 7.75miles and 3000ft of climb (and descent) in 1:06:32 with first lady finishing in 1:25:35. The Helsby results were:

27th 1:26:51 Jim O’Hara

41st 1:33:07 Ben Crossley

45th 1:34:38 Laura Baynham-Hughes (5th lady)

59th 1:41:28 Tim Palmer

67th 1:48:47 Jim Jones

79th 1:57:16 Paul Roberts

86th 2:04:52 Sue Buck

In all, there were 91 finishers

Thanks to Andy Smith for support and photos and Chris, James and Rhys Baynham-Hughes for support.

Parkrun

Please find a link below to the Helsby RC consolidated results from the Saturday parkruns. Well done to everyone who took part in one.

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

That’s all this week folks, thanks again for all the fab reports, if I have missed anything please let me know so I can update the blog.

Keep on running…

Cheers
Col T

Helsby RC weekly round-up 23rd to 29th April 2018

Hello all

Lots to report this week so let’s get started!

Reminders

No track this coming Bank Holiday, Joe and Mario are having a well earned break. Track will commence the following week.

We have a couple of races coming up:

Tuesday 8th May – Walton Park 5 mile (6th road counter), still places left:

https://www.active.com/liverpool-merseyside/running/distance-running/walton-park-5-miler-2018

Tuesday 8th May – Thurstaston Multi-Terrain Challenge – Pay on the night (£5 aff)

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

Felsby Vs Helsby – Dinas Bran fell race – Weds 9th May – Pay on the night

Tough Team Challenge

Last shout to anyone who would like to take part in the Tattenhall Tough Team Challenge on 22nd June.

I have four men’s teams confirmed so far, these are:

Col T
Bish
Danny Ryder

Rich Hankins
Ian Hamling
Gaz Boyd

Mike Williams
Phil Gillard
Roy Gaskill

Trevor Lewis
Ed Halliwell
Froddy

Please let me know by Sunday as I’ll be posting entries out then (col808@hotmail.com) or Facebook.

Dearnford Relay

Last shout out to anyone wanting to take part in the Dearnford Lake Relays in July. Fitzy has the following up to now who would like to take part. Ideally we need 2 more, and he will then sort teams.

Fitzy
Vanessa
Rachael Holden
John Whitehead
Col Thompson
Leah
Gill Fitz
Froddy
Roy
Helen Owens
Bish
Paul C
Jane A
Geoff C
Davyd
Jim Higgins

Please message Fitzy if you wish to take part.

Borders League – Shotton

Report by Fitzy

Last Weds seen us travel over to Shotton to take part in the last race of our Borders League season. Both men’s and ladies teams had built up a good season’s points tally  to pretty much guarantee top flight status. 20 Helsby runners attended this one, 16 men and 4 ladies all started along side the River Dee, on a chilly and windy evening. The course seen you head along the river side to double back on yourself, and head off down the Greenway cycle path, a little loop of the local industrial estate and then back along the riverside to a very fast finish, on which was a very flat course.

First home for the men was myself followed by Chris Collins and the captain Col Thompson, first home for the ladies was Rachael Holden, followed by Debbie Read and the returning Helen Owens (welcome back). The ladies team incurred penalty points on the night as only had 3 finishers which meant they finished last on the night but 5th overall. The mean came 5th on the night, but 4th overall for their highest season finish to date for quite some time.

I would personally like to thank everyone who has taken part this season, whether you ran, supported or baked cakes, you know who you all are. I think it’s only right that I would love for us to try and move up the table next year, but i would love to see us get more and more runners to these races. It is noticed how many smiley green army faces there is month after month, and I’ve also been told we are all pretty loud as well.

Pre-season training starts in August, so you can all have a few months off now from me nagging and I’ll be back later in the summer to start pestering away again for the new season in Sept/Oct.

HRC Borders

Mid-Cheshire 5K

Report by Carol Shaw

13 Helsby runners took part in Mid Cheshire 5K at Kingsley on Friday April 27th. The rain held off throughout the race, and the running conditions were perfect. Chris Fitzpatrick was the first runner home with a pb time of 16.53. Chris’ efforts were also captured on the film footage from the drone! Rachel Holden also got a pb with a time of 22.22. Carol won an age category prize. Dave Feakes, Carol and Rachael finished within seconds of each other. Susie Woodward Moor ran well and finished in 22.48. Almost exactly the same time as last year. Thanks to Vanessa, Andy and Sue for their support out on the course.

IMG_7821

Llangynhafal Loop Fell Race

Report by Laura Baynham Hughes

Saturday saw the 2nd fell counter of the season with a trip over to North wales for the Llangynhafal Loop. This is a regular counter in the Helsby fell championship, a great local race and this year was also part of the North Wales Fell series. 4 ladies and 4 men donned the green vest for a jaunt around the hills on a glorious day – not forgetting Joe and Mario out on the course and my own personal cheering squad of the B-H boys! You always have to be a bit concerned when the first thing the race director says to you on arrival is ‘ don’t worry, but there is a bull in the field you need to walk through to get to the start, if you are concerned you can go down the lane and around – up to you!” Right, through the field it is then!

Luckily we all made it to the start field in one piece and had a really enjoyable race. Max had a cracker, finishing in 3rd place overall, Janet enjoyed a sprint finish thanks to Anne from Wirral (first time Janet wasn’t beaming as she crossed the line!), great to see Rebecca back joining the fellsby crew and I was chuffed with my 2nd place (more wine for the fridge!). Hope to see some more #greenarmy vests at next fell counter which is Lads Leap in Glossop on 19 May. If you want to give the fells a go but not sure about kit or got any questions just ask as it would be great to see more green vests enjoying these great races.

Parkrun

Please find a link to the HRC consolidated results. Well done to everyone who took part, especially Jenny Illidge for a fantastic win at Phoenix Park!!
http://www.parkrun.com/results/consolidatedclub/?clubNum=1721

That’s all this week folks, thank you to everyone who sent in a report, we couldn’t do the blog without you so keep them coming!! The HRC inbox is helsby-race-reports@outlook.com.

Keep on running…

Cheers
Col T

 

 

Helsby RC weekly round-up 26th March to 1st April 2018

Hi all

Firstly can we give a warm welcome to our new members, we have had three people joining us in less than a week which is great news! They are Ian Peers, Rebecca Tate and Mark Amphlett. Welcome to the club! We hope you enjoy your time here at Helsby Running Club.

Before the racing news please see a message from Jackie below:

Thinking ahead to warmer (& drier) running this Summer ….

Our 4th Trail series counter is Race the Train, it’s a great opportunity to make it a HRC club camping weekend. There something for all the family with steam train rides and..

Rotary Challenge (14 miles)
Quarry Challenge (10k)
Dolgoch Challenge (5.5 miles)
Tynllwynhen Challenge (3.5 miles)
& Toddlers Trot
http://www.racethetrain.com/

The last couple of years we have used a Towyn campsite within close walking distance of the start, finish, town & beach. If you would like to come along & join in the Summer run & fun then the campsite details are:-

http://pallmallfarmcaravanpark.org.uk/

Pall Mall Campsite Towyn 01654 710384.   Note it’s the Towyn in Gwynedd. LL36 9RU, not the one near Rhyll!
It’s best to reserve a spot by giving them a ring now (no depost required) as Towyn fills up with tons of running club campers (to add to the atmosphere).  Hopefully see you there!

Reminders

Our 4th road counter (the Chester Spring 5) is next Wednesday 11th April. It’s a fast 5 mile course and compared to other road races is good value for money at only £11 entry fee. We normally get a good turn out from HRC so get your entries in folks!

All details can be found in this link:
https://wcac.niftyentries.com/Essar-Chester-Spring-51

Rivington Pike Fell Race

Report by Tim Palmer

On Easter Saturday, Max and I ran in the Rivington Pike Fell Race, one of the oldest fell races having been run since the 1880s. It is a short fell race, 3 miles and 700 feet of climb from Horwich to the top of Rivington Pike and back– so a bit like a Parkrun on steroids! The course record by John Wild in 1981 of 15:53 is very impressive.

This year, about 350 runners took part with a good representation of north-western clubs – both road and fell. The course has a bit for both as about half of it is on tarmac; although I was grateful for fell shoes on the steep descent from the top of the Pike. Max finished 19th in 21:05 and I finished 142nd (13th Vet 50) in 26:47.

Thanks to Katie for support at the top gate; and to Horwich RMI Harriers & AC for putting the race on.

Hale 5

Sadly no reports for our 3rd road counter at the Hale 5 race which is a shame as it looked like a fantastic event, it would have been nice to get a review from a runners perspective.

Congratulations to Ian Hamling for first Helsby runner home in a very impressive time of 31:35 (which I believe is a PB) and Rachael Holden who scored another PB in 37:21 to take the chequered flag for the ladies. Also well done to John Rossiter for an age group win and well done to all seven green vests who turned up. Brilliant running all!

Helsby results below:

41th Ian Hamling 31:35
65th John Rossiter 34:22 (1st in age cat)
85th Roy Gaskill 36:11
109th Rachael Holden 37:21
178th Geoff Shaw 40:26
267th Edward Roberts 43:34
427th Janet Shaw 50:47 (3rd in age cat)

Full results here –
http://www.ukresults.net/2018/hale5.html

parkrun

Well done to everyone who managed to get to a parkrun on Saturday morning, the weather was pretty miserable but that didn’t deter our hardy members! Congrats to Bish for a win at Phoenix (after a cracking battle with myself) it’s good to see him getting his speed back. Also a great run from Janet Robertson saw her second lady at Delamere. Well done to everyone else, parkruns are brilliant for a bit of quality training so it’s good to see people using them each week.

13B4857B-8DF8-425B-AA18-95A422193028

A link to the Helsby consolidated results can be found here:
http://www.parkrun.com/results/consolidatedclub/?clubNum=1721

That’s all this week folks, don’t forget if you do any racing and want it to be included in the blog the following week please fire a report over to helsby-race-reports@outlook.com.

Cheers
Col T

Helsby RC weekly round-up 5th to 11th March 2018

Welcome to this week’s round-up. It was a very busy weekend of racing for the Green Army, it’s great to see so many of you out and about racing. Before the news Jackie has sent in a quick reminder regarding the Sport Relief Fun Run…

HelsbySportsReliefMile2018Posterfinal2

 

It’s for all ages and abilities so come along and join the fun & raise money for Sport Relief & our nominated local charities (suggestions welcome). Have got a number of volunteers and helpers on the day but for the full set could do with 4 more, please let me know if you can help asap jackiekeasley@btinternet.com

Thanks
Jackie

Chester Ultra

Report by Gareth Boyd

Got up at silly o’clock last Saturday for a short drive to Waverton. Registered and was welcomed by a friendly ‘Green Army’ face – Mr Ben Williams (who was kindly volunteering throughout the day). No fancy dress this time – not for ultras 😉 but made sure that I appeared on the front of starting line for race pics 😎. 6am the race started and I made sure that I held an easy pace, not going off too quickly and dying half way around. The 1st 5/6 miles are run on road and then you join the canal – after this it was basically like playing ‘can you spot an area of ground which isn’t muddy! ‘ I kid you not – it was like cross country but approx 40 miles of it 😲😳.

At approx 25 miles we reached Helsby Hill and I was greeted by Betty and Steve (cheers guys) – great to see you guys. We then headed over to Frodsham Hill and then in Delamere.

The last 10k runs along yet another canal – a muddy canal of course.  At this stage most of us were keen to get the race over and done with – I managed to pass a number of runners and finish in position 57. I actually had to pass the finish line twice, as 1st time around, the official camera wasn’t around 🙄. The reward – ok, the usual t-shirt and a lovely burger and hot drink. Awaiting office results but think my finish time was 10.40 hours. Worth noting that Charlie Sharp smashed the course record by 20 mins – now 7.12 hours #wow . Unlikely Charlie, however, I didn’t fall during the race 😎

20180310_120058

Gaz’s catalogue pose!

Knighton 20

Report by Fitzy

Sunday seen me travel down to Stafford to take part in my marathon warm up race, a 3 lap, 20 miler along the country lanes of Knighton. This race formerly known as the Stafford 20 attracts a lot of people like myself, who are looking for a long distance race which is ideal preparation for our spring marathons, mostly Manchester or London. It was pretty much near perfect running conditions, a bit overcast and nice and cool.

If you haven’t already heard , because I’ve not really talked about it much, I’ve given up drinking since new year, and I am following a 14 week plan and so far so good, not missing one session, and following the high mileage this plans sets you, and I’m reaping the rewards at present, although there are a few downsides but I’ll make up for that come April 8th.

I had heard from a few club members that the course had been moved to a new location but the country roads where pretty much the same and were undulating with some long climbs. The first mile and a half was all down hill, so I set off at my marathon race pace and was happy with the first 3 miles, until I hit the first hill which you could see the top of as well in the distance. It was nothing too bad but a long drawn out climb is in my opinion worse than a short steeper climb. Once over the top, it reminded me a lot of the 4VHM course, lots of ups and downs, but nothing too bad. My pace held on to my average needed and lap 1 ended with a big steep climb back up to the club house and past the car park, the very same car park that after 2 laps of it David Madders thought, nah, I’m going home after passing his car one too many times for his liking a few years back.

Lap 2, more of the same really, held onto the pace quite well, was starting to bank a few seconds on each mile, for them to be clawed back on the climbs, but all along I was thinking if I can do this on this course, then I should be able to hold out on marathon day, as Manchester only has 150ft of elevation on the whole 26.2 miles compared to 700ft on 20 for this course. The last lap seen me overtake 6th, and then 5th who had come to a stop with cramp, finding myself finishing in 4th but 1st MV40 home, earning a nice £25 voucher and a crisp £10 note. My finish time was 2 hours 3 mins and 25 secs. A very enjoyable day out and more importantly it’s now given me the confidence going into the marathon in just under 4 weeks time and I feel full of confidence. I cannot wait to crack open that first beer on 8th April, just hope it’s a PB victory beer.

Full results are here:
https://www.race-results.co.uk/results/2018/results%20velo-runner-knighton-20.pdf

Loggerheads 10k

Report by Darren O’Connor

I attended the loggerheads 10k trail race on Saturday morning and it was good to see fellow Helsby runner Mike Barnard in attendance too. The 10k route was 2 x 5k laps around loggerheads Country Park which involved hills, technical descents and a quite large leg busting stair climb. I have to admit, I found the course challenging – particularly the stair climb which zapped my legs (queue laughs from the fell runners) However it was a lot of fun and catered for all abilities including the option to do a 5k loop and even run with your dog if you wanted. I finished in 17th place overall so could be worse. For me, this race really highlighted the difference in running on trails compared to roads and should serve as a wakeup call if I’m going to have any hope of getting round the Causeway Coast trail ultra in September!

The Howarth Hobble

Report by Ian Rutherford

1Sandwiched between two beautiful spring days, the unrelenting rain-spray of the M6, M65 en-route to West Yorkshire kind of set the tone for the what was in-store on this particular Saturday.  Observing the roadside snow drifts didn’t do much to uplift my cheer as we meandered through the hills towards the pretty village of Haworth.  In the car was the entire Greenarmy cast, hill runner extraordinaire Max Wainwright himself (asleep in the back of the car), driver Ben Crossley and googlemaps navigator my good-self.  That was as much navigation as I was prepared (or qualified) to do for the rest of the day I can assure you.  Arriving in good time for registration and set-up we made our way to the start line in the main street (note they made us start at the bottom of the steep hill).  Just shy of 400 runners (and probably a handful of hiker-walkers) assembled in the rain and heavily overcast conditions, though light winds and mild temperatures in truth didn’t make it feel too bad at all if I’m honest.

Max had already hooked up Buckley’s Jez Brown and Ben and myself wandered further back on the start line to do some last-minute faffing with our kit.  At around 8.10 we were off and the slow trot up the cobbled hill began.

The course is a 32-mile anti-clockwise loop from / to Haworth over the West Yorks and East Lancs hills taking in sizeable towns of Todmorden and Hebden Bridge.  Total elevation for the course is approx. 5000ft.

Things get interesting and picturesque quickly as we run alongside the vast reservoir at Stanbury.  The terrain is already demanding and within the first few miles everyone is already wet-footed and soaked through.  The slippy rock makes running at any speed difficult but given the number of already steep climbs this became less of an issue and some yomping had already begun.

Ben was finding the terrain much easier underfoot and made light-work of the climbs; he even had time to take some excellent pics.  We found ourselves chalking off the miles efficiently enough, going through the checkpoints and securing a quick biscuit. At roughly the half-way stage we observed some supporters/helpers one of which carrying a sign indicating hotdogs and sure enough around the bend, on top of the moor was Checkpoint 4 with tables laden with hotdogs (and veggie dogs), soup, tea etc.  Very welcome.  At this point mine and Ben’s elation was quickly curtailed, seeing Max, fully clothed and if honest looking somewhat off-colour.  It was obvious his race had finished.  After ensuring he was okay and that his lift back to Haworth was happening, Ben and myself plodded onwards.

We were both moving well and constantly picking up people, taking comfort that we were definitely going the right way.  On one of the faster downhill sections, I had my customary fall and with Ben’s first-aid help managed to bandage my knee up sufficiently.  We lost around 10 mins in doing so.

The most significant elevation is ‘backended’ on this course, with two huge moorland hills, Stoodley Pike being one of them with its ghostly monument poking through the mist and lots of cobbled-road coming in to Hebden climbing up to Heptonstall.  Ben took a shot of whiskey at the check-point just before this, the biggest climb, at roughly 20 miles, me, I went for a cheese and onion pasty.

Both tired now and hearing that the penultimate checkpoint had ran out of water didn’t go down well and Ben, now flagging a tad, demonstrated his resourcefulness in taking water from a trail-side spring.   Replenished and perked up, we tried upping our pace with minute on, minute off running / walking these final very steep climbs.  The most significant snow drifts were evident on these final moors just before re-entering Haworth, knee-deep in places.

A final push, both running well, we made it back to the finish clocking an unremarkable 6hours 48m finishing in joint 167th but it was chalked off and with huge grins we got some refreshment and joined a snoozing Max in the car.

For the record this year’s winning time is an amazing 4hours 33m by Ken Sutor of Cheshire Hash and Buckley’s Jez Brown (who a lot of us know at the club) was a brilliant 8th in 4hours 59m.

 

 

dc5d115e-df2f-4dfa-939b-3346c85b1a0f

Please find a link to the Saturday parkruns below. Well done to everyone who ran, especially our Bish with a brilliant win at Phoenix Park!

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

That’s all this week folks, thank you so much for all the brilliant reports, it makes our job a lot easier and gives a bit of variety to the blog each week. Please keep them coming, the email address is helsby-race-reports@outlook.com.

Keep on running!

Cheers
Col T

Helsby RC weekly round-up 29th Jan to 4th Feb 2018

Hello all

Very quiet week of running for the Green Army last weekend, no reports in the inbox so only a reminder and the parkrun results. If you completed a race which we don’t know about please fire a report over to helsby-race-reports@outlook.com and I can always update the blog later on.

Reminders

 

Borders League

Please see a message from Fitzy regarding the next Borders League race…

Hello all

I know the 18th Feb is probably half term week for a lot of our members but you can always bring the kids with you, i will be 🙂

Although this one of the furthest away in all of our races it’s still quite popular. This is on the measured 10k course, with some great views of the castle and sea front. So we don’t incur any penalty points, we need 4 ladies, and 10 men please. We have been doing well of late so lets keep up the momentum. If you could let me know via Facebook or email fitzpatrick_chris@hotmail.com that you can attend, just so I can make sure we can field full teams it would be appreciated. I know June has already been drumming up support.

For any new members who don’t know what these are about, its 7 road races normally from Oct-April, all staged by competing clubs in the league who take it in turn to host them, they are free of charge, all you do is turn up in your race vest, run and take a counter at the end and hand it to myself or normally Mario who collates all the finish positions. They really are great events, and we always have a bit of a laugh along the way. Always remember, it doesn’t matter whether you come in the top 4 ladies or top 10 men, you are stopping other teams scoring just by turning up, so the more the merrier.

Post code for the day is LL54 5RP, these are the recreational grounds with limited parking, there are more parking spots at the castle car park, LL55 2PB, £1.50 it will cost you.

Hope to see you all there
Fitzy

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

parkrun

Please find a link to all the parkrun stats from Saturday. Congratulations to Bish for a win at Phoenix Park, it was their first birthday celebration and they reversed the course, it didn’t slow our Bish down though! Congrats to everyone else who ran one. Consolidated results are below:

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

Sorry but that’s all this week folks, it is possibly the shortest blog I’ve ever done! Hopefully we will have an inbox full for next week 🙂

Keep on running folks!

Cheers
Col T

 

Helsby RC weekly round-up 1st to 7th Jan 2018

Hi everyone

Happy new year and welcome to this weeks blog, before we get started please see a few words below from Paul Foster regarding the Northern XC Champs:

This year’s Northern cross country championship will be held at Harewood house Leeds on Saturday 27th January. If anybody would like to run in this event please can you email me no later than the 10th January. Runners will be entered and paid by the club, but please check your dates before entering. If runners don’t turn up at this event after entering it is costly for the club. Injuries cannot be helped and you will not receive a public flogging!

Also please give a warm welcome to new member Rob Hough. I’m sure you will all make him feel welcome, he’s already been roped into doing the Borders on Sunday! Fitzy really has no shame 😉

And finally the belated results from the Xmas handicap can be found at the following link:

https://helsbyrunningclub.files.wordpress.com/2018/01/copy-of-xmas_handicap_calcs_unsorted_2017.xlsx

It opens on the handicap results and the previous sheet has the absolute results.

Smithhills 10k MT

Our top vet Col Bishop had another storming run at a 10k MT race at Smithhills in Bolton on Sunday, well done Bish! He has kindly sent over a few words for this race, please see below:

On a lovely crisp frosty morning with clear blue skies I headed off to Bolton Smithills country park for the monthly run organised by NMAC for a 10k multiterrain race. With a start on the grass half loop of the park before heading out of the park with a good mile or so uphill climb repeated twice. Happy to say I had podium position 1 .

Would love to say one I would recommend this one for any of our club members who are NMAC members but unfortunately it is the last one ever due to lack of interest.

Certainly blew the cobwebs away.

Cheshire XC Champs

The Green Army came out in force for the Cheshire County XC Champs on Saturday, a big well done to all those who ran, some even doubled up with a parkrun first! Over to Captain June with this fab report…

On Saturday an army of green vests were seen racing around Delemere at the Cheshire Cross Country Championships. Fantastic running by everyone who took part. The conditions were very tough….a ‘proper’ cross country course! The support around course was brilliant and certainly helped push us through the gloopy mud! Lots of happy smiley faces albeit with very muddy spikes came through the finish line. Well done all! 

Post race there were lots of nominations for the ‘Lady of the League’ and I am delighted to announce that Janet is this week’s winner for her positive vibes and wonderful smile pre, during and post race! Well done! 

Link to full results can be found here:
http://www.cheshireaa.com/results/XCC/2018/Cheshire%20XCC%20Delamere%20Forest%20-%20Sat-6-Jan-2018.pdf

parkrun

Please find the consolidated results from the Saturday parkrun, well done to all who ran one!

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

That’s all this week folks, as usual please let me know if I have missed anything. All results and reports should be sent to the inbox helsby-race-reports@outlook.com.

Cheers
Col T