Weekly blog 14 Oct to 20th Oct

 

Just a couple of notices this week, the first from Jackie and the second from Fitzy.

Next Saturday 26th October, 10-2,  at Elton Community Centre there is a KWIC Pop-in. Keeping Well In the Community. 
If you can spare half an hour or please pop down and support me running a HRC stand to promote the benefits of running to Physical & Mental Health  for all.

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Thanks
Jackie

Christmas party time, what date is best for people, will go with the most popular? Usual night, Helter Skelter for 7.30pm then onto wherever the night takes us, normally wherever Karaoke is on.

Fri 29th Nov
Fri 6th Dec
Sat 7th Dec
Fri 13th Dec

Please email me with your choice if you are looking to attend. Sat 7th is the popular option at the minute

<fitzpatrick_chris@hotmail.com

Thanks
Fitzy

parkrun

Full results for Helsby members can be found at the link below. This week’s highlight was a win for Darren Sankey at Knowsley parkrun

https://tinyurl.com/y2lncx2p

Cheers
Gaz

Weekly round-up 14th Sept to 20th Sept

 

Firstly some great news from 4 Villages Half Marathon race director, Laura Baynham-Hughes

Amazing news – the 4 Villages Half Marathon has been voted the best half marathon in the North! Thank you to everyone who helped get people voting – £1k prize and promo in Runners World is a great result! We open for entries on 1st October 2020 – online entry here https://helsbyrunningclub.niftyentries.com/Four-Villages-Half-Marathon-2020.

This year we are also the qualifying race for the England Athletics Masters Team – more info here https://www.englandathletics.org/athletics-and-running/england-competitions/england-teams-and-selection/england-age-group-masters/half-marathon-masters-team-opportunities/

We are having a 4VHM Team meeting on Wednesday 16th October @8pm at the club. If you would like to get involved in this year’s race please come along or drop me an email https://www.parkrun.com/results/consolidatedclub/?clubNum=1721https://www.parkrun.com/results/consolidatedclub/?clubNum=1721if you are interested but can’t make the meeting (Laura@baynham-hughes.com). The more people that help the better – we want to make sure we live up to our ‘Best Half Marathon’ accolade.

Paul Cunnigham sent this report on from his amazing adventure on Offas Dyke

Offas Dyke is a large linear earthwork that roughly follows the current border between England and Wales. The structure is named after Offa the Anglo-Saxon King of Mercia from 757 until 796AD who is traditionally believed to have ordered its construction.

The Dyke is approx. 181miles in length and roughly 80 km of the dyke can still be seen today – enough History.

The morning had arrived – four trains and 5 hours later myself and Gaz O Connor arrived in Chepstow meeting up with Dave Jones and Trisha Clements at registration – well this was  after we had taken a wrong turn out of the station and walked approx. 1.2 miles in the opposite direction carrying four days’ worth of kit – Gaz even managing to lose his waterproof jacket all before registration.

A short coach trip took us from registration to  a rock situated at the top of a small hill signalling the starting point of the Offas Dyke.

You receive a small coin at this point to carry with you along the Dyke and at the finish you give back your coin – if you don’t finish you have to keep hold of the coin and return two years later and try again – I liked this concept but definitely didn’t want to hold onto the coin for a few years.

The race started Friday 8pm and the four of us decided to run together for the first few miles – Gaz had completed the race two years previously so I was in good hands and we started at a nice comfortable pace – before I knew it we had run 19 miles and into our first CP Monmouth  – the facilities were good Hot and Cold food and drinks at hand – I think here we just replenished our drink containers picked up some food and out the door within 15 mins.

Headed out towards Pandy and here entered some woodland and under torchlight we seemed to move really well once more across the ground – running at night is a magical experience and something that I do enjoy – Dave and Trisha seemed to be in their element and were soon out of sight and running away from us quite easily.

Entered Pandy Village Hall 36 miles completed and starting to feel like the race is now underway.

Stayed here for a Mug Shot and a warm brew before leaving and out towards Hay on Wye

Out of Pandy is the first noticeable steady climb which takes you onto the Brecon Beacons The Black Mountains – this is the highest part of the course.

There is a harvest full moon in the night sky really bright and illuminating the surrounding area Im at peace with the world.

Dawn is approaching and the sun is ready to show itself from below the horizon – a splash of red covers the sky to our right yet the full moon is still on our left and doesn’t want to leave – a battle commences between both lunar objects fighting for the sky – we take a minute and say nothing just staring – how lucky I thought to be here right at this moment to witness this awesome spectacle  – the sun eventually wins and a large shadow is cast over  the mountains – The Black Mountains aptly named.

52 miles completed as we enter Hay on Wye Parish hall – this is a major CP so we have our drop bag with all our personal belongings – first thing I notice is some runners are sleeping taking a break – I suppose we have been up for more than 24 hrs but myself or Gaz are not ready for sleep.

I complete some foot care and change into a new set of running attire – bacon sausage and egg batch hot brew and away we go.

It’s going to be a hot day – another really nice running section and we are soon into our stride – unfortunately after a few miles Gaz doesn’t seem to be moving as well as previously and takes a hard fall – I heard the thud and hoped he would be ok –  Gaz battled on for a few more miles but then insisted that I go ahead and run my own race as he was unsure how his was going to pan out – that’s Gazs story so I’ll leave that there.

I checked myself over and felt great – time to open up the legs and I really did enjoy the next few miles – in and out of CP4 Kington Markwick Hall 68 miles and onto Knighton – between these CPs I met up with 3 guys from Holland Maarten Martino and Franscio whom we had nicknamed The Euro Express earlier due to their effective strategy and how quickly they moved between Checkpoints – they allowed myself to run the next 15 miles with them into CP5 – now here is where you make your first real make or break decision – we are 82 miles in and extremely tired – do you push on through the night into Montgomery completing the hardest section of the race 18 miles roughly taking 7 hours or do you rest up and attack later.

My Plan A was always to try and get to Montgomery 100miles without any sleep – I decided to have 1 hrs rest at Knighton and kick on – leaving the checkpoint approx. 02.00am I was ready to see what I was made of – I soon found out – jelly that’s what I was made of the hills were relentless – not huge 1500ft climbs but continuance short steep 400 footers that really got you blowing out of your backside – the descents aren’t any easier and the burning through your quads as well as feet keeps you focused.

Also through lack of sleep the hallucinations started – I saw people – clowns – scare crows – monkeys – a bear – pythons a skeleton tried to give me flowers – nothing scary but if honest quite enjoyable and got me through the next long hours – I arrived in Montgomery shattered and ready for sleep.

Montgomery another major CP – CP6 so my drop bag was waiting – again change of clothing sorted feet out fed myself and hunkered down in a quite part of the Activity centre for 2 hrs rest – woke up more food replenished my own stocks and onto LLanymynech.

My reward for running through the night is I know the next 20 miles are quite flat apart from one or two climbs to Buttingham – I knew this section as Christine Roach had kindly showed us around a few weeks earlier as herself – Sue Buck – Danielle Ryder – Debbie Read and Jackie Kearsley had done most or all of the Offas Dyke over the previous months – when I was meant to leave the dyke to locate CP7 LLanymynech Village hall I somehow missed my exit and completed my first large navigational error – took me almost 5 miles and over and 80 minutes to put right – I was feeling punchy and decided that another sleep was definitely required.

Chippy tea provided wolfed down personal care taking care of and 90 minutes rest.

This next section onto Froncysyllte  – the rest has done me good and again im running really well and enjoying myself – here I meet up with a Becky Wightman whom had won the 100 miler two years previously – great girl really chatty and kept my spirits high – Becky was powering over the ground and was killing the navigation – I felt like a passenger – unfortunately Becky somehow had pulled a muscle behind her right knee and struggled instantly – the ultra-running community is a close one and ive quickly learnt that you stay and help out your fellow competitor as one day it could be you – Becky didn’t complain once and dug in – I was totally impressed and later found out that she works as a full time fireman – made of steely stuff that girl.

Froncysyllte is where the famous aqueduct is situated and is a marvel of engineering – it is now Monday morning and getting to close to 60 hours since we started this epic adventure.

Having plenty of time to think or not to think is a cracking way to find out alitle bit about yourself – your innerself and if honest I believe I am a decent person whom likes to treat people how I wish to be treated  – I like me –  life is for living – don’t get hung up on minor things or any things for that matter – enjoy what you have and show love and compassion to all.

Leaving CP8 138 miles in this is when I knew I was going to finish this race  – I powered into llandegla taking approx. 3.5 hrs to complete the 12 miles – I was on fire ha-ha – Llandegla last major checkpoint CP9 where we had access to our drop bags – beef stew and crusty bread for breakfast taking my footwear off I could see two large blood blisters that had appeared on the side of my feet – my feet started to feel really hot and I couldn’t sooth them – medic takes a quick look but wouldn’t allow me to burst blisters in fear of infection – more tape and plasters but knew the next 30 miles home maybe difficult – also this is where I also found out that Trisha had taken a heavy fall also a day or so ago and was no longer in the race – she was first lady at the time – Dave retired at same time I believe – devastating news and Im sure they will be back in two tears time.

Knew this next section between llandegla and Bodfari as only run  it a couple of weeks ago – I was moving slow and this was my lowest point – 150+ miles into a race and first low point – I’ll take that any race – anyone who’s run this part of the Offas dyke knows there are a few nice climbs and the views are spectacular – as I was climbing up to the fort top of Moel Famau I heard my named called  -it was Jackie – yes Jackie actually in this country I couldn’t believe it – I took a big hug and wiped the tears from my eyes – I was extremely emotional and was more than happy for the company – Jackie lifted my spirits no end and before I knew it we were at Moel Arthur where Becky was waiting at the bottom with refreshments and croissants – I had only left Becky less than 24 hrs ago as she dropped out of race and now she’s supporting instantly – what a girl – I started to tell Jackie a story about Becky when I had totally got Becky and Story mixed up and knew I was confused alitle more tired  than I thought.

Soon I was back on my own heading towards final CP when approx.. 4miles out another friendly face – Jake Holmes had decided I was moving too slowly and wanted to kick me in the backside – soon enough we were in the Bodfari CP and the heat from the log cabin was just lush – medic looks at my feet tells me I don’t have any more blisters and tapes up a few issues – I could of carried on through the night as only 12 miles remained but I wasn’t getting picked up until 10.00am Tuesday morning  – so I fed my face and bedded down for a solid 7 hours – 7 hours of the most wonderful sleep I have ever had – I left CP10 with a guy from the South – Ashley Ward and we shared our life stories to each other as if we had known each other for a lifetime – the coast was now in sight as light took over from the darkness – another beautiful morning without another sole in sight – we felt alive and so lucky – Ash and myself jogged into town to be met by friends – family – and the volunteers and crew who had made are dreams and ambitions possible.

We touch the finishing rock situated front of the Nova centre in a time which is totally irrelevant 84 hrs 22 minutes  and my first thought was………This wasn’t a race it was an adventure and I cannot wait for the next one

Full parkrun results for Helsby runners are below, including a Helsby 1-2-3 in the men’s race at Phoenix Park

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

Cheers
Gaz

Weekly blog: 1st July to 7th July

Firstly, a message from Jackie.

Pre-entries are open for the ‘Hodgson Brothers Mountain Relay’, a fell running relay around the high Patterdale skyline for teams of 8 in 4 legs on October 6th .Its limited to 70 teams and pre-entries need to be in by 9th August. Please let me know (jackiekeasley@btinternet.com) if you are interested in being one of the team members & if we have 8 we will put in a pre-entry. Previous fell running at A &/or L advised.

http://hbmr.org.uk/entries/

Cheers

Jackie

Karen Horsley sent this report from Forest Park Ladies 5k Wednesday 3rd July

A warm summer’s evening welcomed 182 runners to Birchwood Forest Park for the annual 5k ladies race hosted by Spectrum Striders, apparently this was the highest turnout in the 27 year history.

There were five Helsby vests present, despite the photo only showing four – I missed the team photo having been completely oblivious to the huge green flag marking our meeting point, it’s a good job such a high level of observation isn’t required to follow the runner in front or I’d never finish a race!I

The 5k course was a good mix of woodland paths and road with enough welcoming shade to prevent overheating from the hot sun. Our ladies ran well (myself excluded) as the below results show with Kathryn making a fabulous debut to take 1st junior in a time of 25:15, and our top three finishers placing 5th in the team competition. Well done ladies.

Helsby Results

Rachael Holden – 10th position overall and 3rd in her age category with a time of 22:36

Leah Binns – finished in 24:35 and 4th in her age category, 24th overall

Debbie Read – in 25th place and hot on the heels of Leah, Debbie finished in 24:39 and was 3rd in her age category

Kathryn Schofield, as mentioned above had a great race coming in as first junior and 29th overall

And then there was me, mid-field with a pain in my leg (whatever next?!) finishing in 32:09

Finally, a special mention of future member, Alice Willcott, who finished in a fantastic time of 26:20 and was 2nd junior home, well done Alice.

Helsby Finishers: Rachael – Leah – Debbie – Kathryn – Alice – Karen

Consolidated club parkrun results are below

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

Cheers

Gaz

Weekly blog 20th May to 26th May

Notice: Please come along & support this “Keeping Well in the Community” event to be held at Helsby Community Centre between 10 & 2 on Sat 8th June.Betty will be there running a HRC stall telling folks about the benefits of running & HRC, Helens couch to 5K & Frodsham Joggers. Please pop in if you can to see what’s going on & support Betty spreading the running word!

CBH sent in this report from his Dragon’s Back/ Wales Coast to Coast attempt.

What a week – many of you will know I’ve been away racing down Wales in an attempt to raise as much money as possible for those with Acquired Brain Injuries (ABI). I’ve been truly humbled by the response, support and generosity I received from my friends, colleagues and even some people I don’t know! It’s a very personal charity given that they helped me to get back on my feet so Thank you so very much for providing the fuel to the fire I needed to finish.If you missed out first time around and wish to contribute to this amazing cause please visit here, I’d love to burst £3k: https://mydonate.bt.com/fundraisers/cbh-dragon so if you’ve got a spare fiver or even more then please don’t be shy 😊

The race itself went even better than I predicted. Starting off I felt really under prepared due to a lack of mountain miles in my legs. Injuries have really taken their toll over the last 18 months and so to finish the incredible day 1 route within 20 minutes of my 2017 time was really surprising. A quick wash in the stream and plenty of food later I was starting to fear I’d gone too hard and would feel the impact the next day.

Day 2 is arguably the toughest due to the terrain; it’s certainly the roughest in Wales. Navigation was going well and there was more scope for good lines Vs the suggested route. The route gives loads of scope to play with the mountains; working with them more than trying to dominate and conquer them. Dropping off the first Rhinog I took a chance that I could find a good wide line and it paid off. I saved ~30 minutes and only had two 6ft drops to content with. The mental boost that a well navigated line gives is huge and I comfortably flew across the rest of the course despite the heat.

The heat played a huge part in the race, it wasn’t just hot, it was also close, meaning you simply don’t cool down as the sweat clings rather than evaporates. Combine that with the lack of streams around in both Northern and Southern Snowdonia and it’s a real problem.

Day 3 started well, but after a massive high in Machynlleth (due to a slush puppy machine, ice cream, bottle of coke and a trip to the chippy for a fish bap) I felt totally drained on the second half, plus my right knee was really hurting and would prove to be a problem going forward. Whilst I had fantastic company I just felt it was a roasting hot death march. I struggled to eat that evening and felt done.Sleep is a healer. I woke up positive and got going. I had soon caught up with my friends and we made reasonable time across to the half way drop bag. The second half of the day I got on it.

The Elan valley is covered in tussocks (baby’s heads) so it’s hard to move swiftly, but I managed to keep it moving and really put some time away. Maybe it was the promise of a hog roast at the pub next to Day 4 camp? Getting in I had a horrible wash in the lake (freezing and sharp rocks!) I tucked away 4 portions of lasagne and headed to the pub for the hog roast. Back in the game.

Day 5 I woke up with a really negative mind. Everything was wrong, but once I got going all that negativity disappeared. I was flying (relatively). The consequence of this was that I was in and out of the half way drop bag before Laura and the boys arrived… maybe I was just desperate to get on the stunning Fans of the Black Mountain. More great lines, shortcuts and sheep trods meant I hit the ice cream van with good time, only to make the amateur mistake of only ordering one cornetto!

Still, I cracked on and finished strongly. As I dropped down the final road section ignoring the pain in my knee I was put firmly in my place as I was passed by a young lady pushing a pram and walking her dog… okay, so that was Jasmin Paris, but it still tickled me. Hitting the final corner Laura I heard Laura and the body cheering. My beautiful boys grabbed my hands and ran across the final field and the line with me. Best finish ever!

Epilogue:This was my third Dragon’s Back, that puts me in excellent company – one of only five to have completed three. Those that have followed the others will know I’ve always had a dream to add day 6 on and run the additional 30 miles down to Mumbles Pier in Swansea, thus completing a coast to coast. To add the additional day once everybody else had gone home was mentally tough but so rewarding, especially given the quality of ice cream in the Mumbles! Hitting the beach two miles earlier than I had expected was sound tracked by Sunscream’s ‘I’m only chasing my dreams’. Apt.

Huge thanks to everyone that has supported me – you provided the fuel to keep me going

Gaz Boyd sent this in from his 24 hour charity run around Chester walls

Running Around The Bend

24 hours along Chester Walls-raising funds for Hospice of The Good ShepherdAt 9am Sunday 26th May, I left Chester Town Hall and started my Running challenge.
Just after 9am on Monday 27th May, I arrived back at my starting point – having covered 90 miles (over 47 laps of The Walls)Here’s my tale about the 90 mile journey.During the first 6 miles, I tried to get into a running rhythm (not going off too quick was key, as this ‘adventure’ was definitely going to be a ‘marathon’ rather then a sprint). The light initial rain showers were actually pleasant and I felt energised and excited.

Now, it’s probably no surprise that when one starts to run around The Walls at least 10 times or more, one starts to become recognised by individuals working along the route. This was certainly the case with 2 local artists by The Eastgate Clock and The Dee – both very friendly, encouraging and supportive.

After nearly 3 hours, the fundraising campaign stepped up a gear and I grabbed a quick ‘pitstop’ to change into my first fancy dress costume = Spider-Man. Despite being rather warm, it definitely generated a lot more interest and increased the support/cheers from passers by. Families asked for selfies in return for a donation – great fun.

Support throughout from family and friends was overwhelming and without them the 24 challenge would have been a lot tougher. Special thanks to Mike, Tim and Bex (with family), Natalie, Richard H (Green Army), Joanna, Lisa and Dale, Rob and Martin. Of course HUGE thanks to my wife Karen. Local businesses were also really supportive – special thanks goes to That Beer Place, Hypha and Chip’d – awesome chips!At about 3pm it was time to ‘switch’ into my 2nd fancy dress costume = Cheerleader.

Once again this helped generate more generous donation collections. It’s worth noting that Spider-Man is definitely a more popular costume with everyone.

As well as the fabulous support throughout, I was overwhelmed by the kind donations (both online and bucket collection). Amazing!The weather ‘gods’ were certainly looking after me during the 24 hours and I was fortunate to enjoy a beautiful sunset. Chester is a stunning city. At this stage my running had reduced to a walk/run strategy – my legs not surprisingly becoming increasingly tired/fatigued.

I was really disappointed with this but recognised that the key thing was just to keep moving forward.Between 11am to 4am, what could have been a tough period was actually quite good fun. As previously mentioned, the support from the running community (bringing food/snacks/water) was awesome and with chat/banter, the crazy scary black cat by Chester Castle and the entertainment provided by pub/club goers, time flew by!Sunrise was around 4.30am and with only hours to go, I marched (staggered) on.

I am embarrassed to say that at around 6.15am, myself, Martin and Rob stopped for a short ‘pitstop’ at a well known food retailer – here, I felt very faint, struggled to eat anything, was almost sick and had a ‘fight ‘ with a toilet role 🙄. Enough said about that……..At 9.02am, I arrived back at The Town Hall and to the theme of Rocky, hurled myself up the steps before celebrating!

Fundraising to date is around £1500. THANK YOU ONCE AGAIN TO EVERYONE FOR THE SUPPORT. This is an experience I’ll never forget.To sponsor me go to https://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/GarethBoyd

Col Bishop was at Buxton Half and sent in this report

Bank holiday Monday saw me line up on a very wet and wimdy morning outside the Buxton Opera house heading off up Axe Hill for the start of the Buxton half marathon. With constant climbing i found myself that high up i was running in the clouds with my ears popping. The route took in Axe Hill, Dowel Dale, Chrome Hill, Park house Hill, Glutton Dale, Briarlow Bar and Harpur Hill finishing at the Pavilion Gardens.

The winner came home in 1hr 17min, I am pleased to say I came in 11th overall managing to win V50 category which isn’t too bad considering I am nearer 60 than 50 😊

Whilst I have said this is by far the toughest road race I have ever run I would certainly recommend this if anyone fancies a challenge with fabulous scenery

Cheers Bish

Full consolidated parkrun results are below
https://www.parkrun.com/results/consolidatedclub/?clubNum=1721

Weekly blog 15-4-2019 to 21-4-2019

Firstly a message from Tim Palmer

Hopefully all members should have received an email about updating your emergency contact details. We would be grateful if you could update or add these to your profile on England Athletics on myAthletics Portal.

If you haven’t had this email, a copy is available at:

https://mailchi.mp/1687e8c9a36d/helsby-rc-emergency-contact-details

Thanks

Tim Palmer

 

Karen Horsley sent in this report from Bodelwyddan parkrun

One of mine and Kai’s running goals for the year is to run 10 different parkrun courses. Last week we’d planned to do Bodelwyddan Castle parkrun but as I was unwell we delayed it until this week.

Saturday morning: the sun was bright, the temperature was high – 20 degC at 9am in North Wales in April… what is going on with the weather?!

I’d read that Bodelwyddan parkrun was a mainly trail course including woodland, so I’d imagined jogging serenely through dappled shade etc. In reality there was a long uphill section in full sun before getting to the shady woodland, and as a two lap course we had to do it twice. It was so hot!

As I’m still on the comeback from injury (how long can I get away with saying that?) I’d set myself a reasonable target of 33 minutes, but with the hill times two, a photo stop and a shoelace that needed retying I was happy to finish at just over 34 minutes and six minutes behind my speedy son!

Bodelwyddan Castle is a new parkrun, yesterday was event 28 and coincidentally my 28th parkrun. It is a beautiful course, with great marshals and fabulous views. Definitely worth the drive out.

 

 

Helsby runners were in action throughout the area, full consolidated results are below

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

Cheers
Gaz

Weekly round-up 18th Feb to 24th Feb

 

Firstly, a message from Jackie.

UKA All England Club Team Marathon Championships

How about HRC entering the inaugural UKA All England Marathon Club Team Championships? Giving club runners the opportunity to compete against one another as a single club unit at the popular MBNA Chester Marathon on 6 October. Club runners of all abilities will be able to contest for a national team title in a mixed team format. For our club size we need 4 men & 3 ladies. Who is up for this please, email jackiekeasley@btinternet if you are or reply to facebook feed.

More Info Here:- closing date for team entries 31July but you need to enter individually too.

https://www.englandathletics.org/athletics-and-running/england-competitions/national-championships/champions-of-the-road/#clubteaminfo

Susie Woodwardmoor sent this in from the National XC Champs

Four of us took part in the Senior Womens race at the ECCA National Cross Country Championships, Harewood House on Sat 23rd Feb. A sparkling day, clear blue skies, colourful flags heralding the scores of clubs that take part, fluttering in the sunny breeze – it was like being at a festival (in stark contrast to last years grey chilly conditions). Hundreds of friends and families supporting the runners (many with dogs for those of us who like to bring them along). A happy and exciting atmosphere.

The race starts with an exhausting climb up clingy longish grass but evens off along a lovely smooth plateau dipping down then up again, meandering around the the rolling parkland with beautiful open views across the landscape to the house, it’s a wonderful venue, especially on a day like this. The senior women’s race is two laps long an 8km route.. long enough. Lovely as it is, it’s quite a tough course and we appreciated the support from Mario and Rachel’s son Paddy (who came 450th out of 2000 senior men representing his university) . The hills are not much fun and we are all a bright shade of pink at the end but we loved it and would recommend it as a great event, worth the travel. A mud free X country…

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Results  http://www.englishcrosscountry.co.uk/news/saucony-english-national-xc-results-2019Champs

Debbie Read sent this report in from Birchwood XC

Sunday saw the last cross country of the season at Birchwood, Warrington. Due to a mixture of it being half term and other races happening over the weekend a very depleted Green Army were in attendance-just 2 men and 3 women turned up.

Leaving Helsby in the fog, the race was run in beautiful spring sunshine and despite being told duff information that conditions underfoot were dry and firm we all had a good time.
My shoes are washed, drying ready for next season – can’t wait. 

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The end of season saw Helsby men finish 14th out of 24 clubs and the ladies 10th

parkrun

The full consolidated parkrun results for Helsby members are below.

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

Highlights would have normally included the 1st place for Chris Fitzpatrick at Phoenix Park. However, the shine was well and truly taken off the win when it came to light that Fitzy had resorted to wearing his expensive new cheating shoes at what is supposed to be a friendly timed run. Oh, the shame!

Cheers
Gaz

Weekly blog 20-1-18 to 27-1-18

Firstly a request from Tim of Delamere Spartans asking if Helsby could help them out with some marshalling at a race they’ve been asked to organise as part of Manley Spring Fair on May Day Bank Holiday.

The race will be a 10k race from Manley Village Hall on Bank holiday Monday the 6th May 2019. It will go out to  the Forest via Manley Common, around the Kingsley area of the Forest and back. We are looking for volunteers to help on the day with Marshalling. We are having a child’s race at 11:30 around Manley Common and an adult race at 12:30. We require Marshall’s for both so any that are in the Forest will need to be available for a few hours.

I can’t promise any food or refreshments but am working on it and they will be allowed free entry into the Spring Fair that is taking place at the same time.
If anybody is interested please will they give me a call and email.
Regards
Tim
Tel 07970498263
timholloway92@gmail.co

Fitzy sent in this report from the Border League race at Tattenhall

Another great turn out for race 4 seen 38 Helsby runners make the short journey over to Tattenhall to race around their 6 mile undulating course on a very windy day which made the conditions pretty tough to race in, 372 runners in total battling the elements.

Hannah Cowley made it her 3rd win this season in the ladies competition, with Alison Halsall coming 1st in the FV45 category. The ladies were 3rd on the day and sit 3rd in the league table just 22 points behind 1st place with 3 races to go.

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Paul Frodsham turned back the clock with a run coming home 2nd in MV60 category for the men, which seen a best finish of the season so far on the day, also coming in 3rd, with some great performances all round. The men strengthening their position in the top flight now remaining in 5th but pulling away from the relegation zone, and just 101 points away from 4th place.

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A full month off now until the next one on March 3rd over in Birkenhead park.  

Full results below
http://www.bordersleague.org.uk/results/
Cheers
Fitzy

Steve Riley sent this in from Marmot Dark Mountains race

Two Helsby pairs met in the dark for this weekend’s Marmot Dark Mountains, based at the splendid Lowther Hall in the eastern Lakes. A race that bills itself as a 2-day mountain marathon squeezed into one night, this one seems to be as much about preparation and managing yourself as about speed.

Chris Baynham-Hughes and Max Wainwright came away with a podium position and in impressive 3rd place in the Short Score Class. They’d have bagged a few more points if their watches hadn’t been set to BST and they’d raced home an hour too early 🙂

darkmountainsdarkmountains-2

A slightly less glorious finish for Jake Holmes and Steve Riley in the B class, who struggled to find one of the cheekier checkpoints (hey, it was dark!) in the worst of the night’s weather. The wet snow and the search in the cold and dark started to bite home and the emergency bivvy sac was broken out to put every bit of clothing on and stuff some more food down. We cut our race short and dropped down to valley level to get back to safety, tails between legs. An adventure was had.

Finally,  club parkrun results from last week are below

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

Cheers
Gaz

Xmas/ New Year round-up



Firstly, apologies for the missing/ late blogs over Christmas and New Year. Please contact Chris Fitzpatrick for further details.

parkrun
Here are the consolidated results for Helsby from New Years Day, also, the previous week Rebecca Tate won her age category at Delemere.
http://www.parkrun.com/results/consolidatedclub/?clubNum=1721

Xmas Handicap results

Thanks to those who came along to the Xmas Handicap last Wednesday. Well done to Steve Wiggins who won the handicap cup & Kevin Smith  who ran the fastest time overall. . 
Name            Position  H/C  H/C    Run
                         Time                 Time
Steve Wiggins      1 29:38 01:30 28:08
Kate Mann            2 30:59 05:00 25:59
Jennie Illidge         3 31:55 08:00 23:55
Emily                     4 31:59 04:00 27:59
Ben Tumilty           5 32:03 09:00 23:03
Carol Shaw            6 32:10 07:30 24:40
Geoff Collins          7 32:13 06:00 26:13
Kevin Smith           8 32:14 11:30 20:44
Dave Jones           9 32:27 10:00 22:27
John Whitehead    10 32:42 08:30 24:12
Laura B-H              11 32:47 09:30 23:17
Hayley Brooks       12 32:55 07:00 25:55
Debbie Read         13 33:04 06:30 26:34
Roy Gaskill            14 33:01 08:30 24:31
Rachel Arnold        15 33:13 04:30 28:43
Tim Palmer             16 33:15 09:00 24:15
John Gallon            17 33:17 00:00 33:17
Janet Robinson      18 33:19 07:30 25:49
Mollie Stradling       19 33:08 03:30 29:38
Ivan Davies             20 33:57 11:30 22:27
Charlie Ashbrook    21 34:07 07:00 27:07
Jane Ashbrook       22 34:09 07:00 27:09
Neil Fergusson       23 34:17 07:00 27:17
Jackie Keasley       24 35:14 03:00 32:14
Trisha Van Rooyen 25 35:19 06:00 29:19
Colin Thompson      26 36:15 12:30 23:45
Anne Barnes           27 42:44 00:30 42:14
Betty Grieve            28 42:44 00:30 42:14

Merry Xmas & a Happy New Year to you all. See you in 2019

Weekly blog 26-11 to 1-12

Firstly a message from Paul Foster regarding the upcoming XC

Hi all,

The Cheshire champs xc is on Saturday 5th January 2019  at Birchwood Forest Park Warrington.  The club will be entering members for this race.
So if any of you would like to enter please respond on this page or send me a email to mooeyf@hotmail.com no later than Friday 21st December.
We will send a separate email this week.
Senior female race is 13.40 pm 8300 m
Senior male race is 14.45 pm  10400m
Thanks
Paul

Also a couple of repeat reminders about this week’s Xmas Drink on Friday at 7pm in Frodsham and Sundays Border League race in Angelsey at 11am

 
Rebecca Tate sent in this report from the Cardington Cracker

Being on my own, I took my old Saab for a good long drive down to Cardington. Even its rally heritage couldn’t deal with the field that was reserved for parking, as it promptly bottomed out on the huge muddy ruts in the gateway. This offered a taster of just how the day was going to progress. All fell races require a degree of navigation; and this one was no exception. Not the course – which was well marked and marshalled – it was finding the village hall to register – I didn’t know where I was going and like a silly sausage I followed signs that said “Start” which led me to a field.

Registration complete, the traditional pre-race toilet visit was necessary. This time I was definitely going to ensure correct navigation, and upon seeing a large queue of men, I assumed there was one single toilet, and asked if this was the case. Bizarrely, it was not and the adjacent room with virtually no queue was in fact the ladies’ loos. This caused much cackling as to the reasons why “Once the men are in there, they’re in for a good 30 minutes” giggled one lady; “Yes they’re probably reading the Sunday Times” cackled another. Quick registration, hardly any loo queuing – all odd but very welcome.

So, off to the start field, where groups of people who knew each other were shouting congratulations at each other for having won tons of other races. Not unnerving at all. And there were the usual sinewy blokes running about eagerly in the cold wearing next to nothing. I positioned myself next to an intriguing looking gentleman who was not only stretching but appeared to be adopting a variety of standing yoga poses, in his Inov8s, in a field. I never saw him after the start, so I guess it worked well for him. But then I’m also very slow.

There were 271 of us, and off we trotted across a field. What a waste of time that was – on the other side was a stile, which is worth getting there early for, because otherwise you politely queue assuming that you’ll go over the stile in order of arrival, but as is often the case a whole bunch of men who generally look like Jeremy Corbyn decide that having ambled slowly over the field, this is a great time to make up 50 places by sauntering right past everyone who got there first (by running quicker as in the spirit of a foot race), and brazenly pushing in at the front.

Thus seething, I carried on. There was next a “green lane” type of path, which was actually a muddy stream, to ensure that for the next 9 miles we’d have squelchy feet. Then through a bog and up a massive hill. It went on, and on, and on. Then came the slippery yellow moss. The best way was actually on hands and feet it was so steep and slippery. Here I observed the next source of annoyance: people who ignore the instructions and don’t carry any kit whatsoever. What a great weight advantage it must give them, and apparently without any consequences as I’ve never seen kit checks at any fell races I’ve been to.

After an age, we got to the top and here the wind was crazy, and blew me sideways. Learning to run leaning into the wind along the ridge, I tried to admire the spectacular views whilst staying upright, and then down a sharp downhill towards another hill that was shaped like a traffic cone. Inevitably that was going to be next on the route. Up we went. Actually I don’t have much memory of this one. I think it’s buried deep in my subconscious and I might wake screaming tonight as it all comes flooding back in my nightmares.

Let’s just summarise the rest of it as bogs, muddy tracks (I’m talking shin deep)  with no way to avoid the stuff, a stream, woods, more hills that took a very very long time to go up, more slippery yellow moss. Just as I was thinking how good my fell shoes are on a downhill bit, my feet slid from under me and I went over backwards. To add insult to injury I actually bounced, and landed twice. Let’s put this down to the springy nature of moss; it couldn’t possibly be having a massive bottom – my glutes of iron could never have afforded a bounce like that. Surely.

Seven miles in the constant uphill was really hurting my right Achilles now. It was relentless. I just wasn’t feeling it today, having started out grumpy, what with the cheating queue jumpers and kit avoiders. I seriously considered finding a marshal and bailing, I’d had enough. But my Garmin beeped telling me it really wasn’t far now so I carried on, and the ground levelled out to be more undulating but still with standing mud pools and clay pools to run through. Although the same distance as Clywdian hills and slightly less elevation, this felt a lot tougher. The final field couldn’t come quick enough and there it was, all done. Looking back, the scenery was amazing and I’d love to go back and run it more casually, stop to take in the views, on a nice summer day. But today it was brutal.

Back to the village hall where they served lovely soup, tea and cakes. I came 242 out of 271, not a great result, especially when compared to the first lady who did it an hour quicker and was 9th overall, taking a new course record! Mercia Fell Runners put in a really strong performance, taking 7 of the top 10 places, with a huge turnout overall.
parkrun
Full consolidated parkrun results for Helsby members are at the link below, highlights include a first place for Col Bishop at Widnes and a first lady for Jenny Illedge at Phoenix
http://www.parkrun.com/results/consolidatedclub/?clubNum=1721

Cheers
Gaz

Weekly round-up 27-10 to 4-11

Firstly a message from Paul Foster regarding the upcoming XC fixture.
Hi all
The second fixture in the Liverpool & District cross country will be held at Sefton Park on 24th November 2018

This event is pre entry, so if any Helsby runners would like to run in this.
Please email me on mooeyf@hotmail.com

No later than Monday 5th November to confirm your entry.
This is a great event in the xc calendar

It is free to all Helsby first claim members.

So to all the regulars and new members Best of Luck but please check your diary before entering.
Cheers
Paul

Race Report – Lausanne Half Marathon by Geoff Collins

Richard Hankins & I took a trip to Switzerland last weekend to run the Lausanne half marathon, together with Richard’s brother Mark, a Swiss resident.  I’d seen this race advertised while on holiday earlier in the year and decided to give it a go.  A nice t-shirt and medal are included.  In fact this was my third visit to Switzerland this year.

The half was one of several races on the day, there is a marathon option, a 10k, a walking race and even a Nordic walking race!

Pre-race preparations included the usual carb loading session on Saturday night. This was at the excellent Va Piano Pasta restaurant in Lausanne.  Together with the extended Hankins family, the venue certainly proved quite an experience.
The half marathon starts in La Tour-de-Peilz near Vevey and follows the smooth well maintained closed main road in a westerly direction.  This took us back to Lausanne along the banks of Lake Geneva to finish in front of the Olympic Museum.  Lausanne is where the International Olympic Committee HQ is based.  Race entry gives you free travel on the train to La Tour.

The race unusually didn’t start till the afternoon.  This was a bit of a pain because of waiting around in the cold, but at least the rain had stopped by then.  The afternoon start is because the half follows the marathon runners along the same route.  The organisation of this race was excellent, the route is very scenic, with views across Lake Geneva towards France and the Alps.  There are many vineyards along the steep south facing slopes on our right most of the way.

The road sweeps round a lot of gentle curves, with dips and rises giving the impression it was rarely flat.   We both thought the course seemed harder than we were expecting.  It was also very cold on the day, I struggled to stay warm which wasn’t made any easier with a noticeable headwind at times.
The half marathon wasn’t a mega huge race either, just 4,328 finishers so it never felt very crowded on the course.  There was a penned start to segregate the runners, some being held back for quite a while to create more space.

It was a lovely weekend with lots to see in Lausanne, the Olympic museum being outstanding and well worth a visit, admission 18f.  Everything the Swiss do, they seem to do very well.

Results:
Winner  Alemayehu Wodajo 1h 06m

Richard Hankins 1hr 29m
(Mark Hankins 1hr 44m)
Geoff Collins 1hr 52m.

 

Fitzy send this is from Abergele 5 mile race

Myself, the captain and Hannah had been selected for “The Shire” for this one, this race being the opposite of the last one we did together in Meerbrook which was super hilly, this one being flat as a pancake apart from the caravan park hill for a few hundred metres around mile 3, but what goes up must come down, so it was super fast coming back down.

The weather forecast had been looking grim for this one, but once we got to Abergele the winds had died down and the rain had disappeared. The issue with this race is the first 2 miles are super flat and super boring, the course being an out and back along coastal path, up the steep hill and around the caravan park to come back on yourself. If you go out too fast on the first mile your screwed which is exactly what i did. The North Wales guys we were competing against where super quick, so me thinking i’m running pretty well at the minute decided to go with them, and got taught a bit of a running lesson, after the first few miles i wanted to give in.

I managed to secure a counter for Cheshire which helped us finish second (out of 2 teams ha ha) and Hannah Cowley again coming home in first place and a women’s course record. Well done Hannah. A mention also to Junior and Senior Wiggo, apparently they turn up to this one every year, I can only assume it’s because they own a caravan out here as it’s not the greatest road race i’ve ever done. Well done guys

Full results are below
https://tinyurl.com/kvq2x25

 

Col Thompson sent in this report from Halewood 5K
Myself, Louise, Nathan Woods and Tracy Woods all ventured over to Halewood on Saturday for the monthly 5k. Excellent organisation as always and conditions were very good for fast times, I’d be rabbiting on about how fast this course was so I was a bit nervous that I’d oversold it but luckily Nathan and Tracy both smashed it with a PB each coming in at 17:22 and 25:54 respectively. Superb running guys! Thank you to Louise for the support and photos, the full results can be found at the link below.

http://knowsley-harriers.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/11/Race-3-Nov-2018.pdf

Parkrun:
Helsby members were in action around the area, highlights included a first place for Col Bishop and a 2nd Lady for Rachel Arnold

Cheers
Gaz