Helsby weekly round-up 25th – 31st July 2016

Hi everyone

A diverse mix of events last week and weekend saw the Green Army undertake races ranging from parkruns, 10ks and fell races to epic 50/100 mile ultras. A huge congratulations to Graham Ireland and our second claim runner Chris Collins for tackling the 50 and 100 mile Lakeland ultra events respectively. More on that to follow with a fantastic report by our Graham.

Also, numbers seem to be on the up for our Monday night track sessions. Paul Frodsham (AKA The Frodfather) has been coaching a group with a bit more intensity added in to spice things up and it’s going very well. Paul’s session runs alongside Joe and Mario’s fantastic track session so there is something there for everyone, please come down and join us on Monday evenings at the high school, with the Borders League looming it’s a great time to add some speedwork to your training.

Before we get to the news please find a few reminders below for some up and coming events this week which may be of interest:


  • Ponderosa fell race BS 6.4km/289m 4miles/950ft
    Wednesday 3rd August, 7pm, £5
    Ponderosa café, Horseshoe Pass, Llangollen (GR 193481)
  • Deestriders Multi-terrain GP #3 (4th in mini trail series)
    Thursday 4th August, 7.30pm, £5
    Start and Finish at Tata (formerly Corus)
    Sports and Social Club
    Rowleys Drive, Shotton
    Deeside. Flintshire
    0.75m from Asda Store at Queensferry Traffic Lights heading towards Flint
  • Halewood 5k
    Saturday 6th August, 10am, free!
    The Environment Centre, Okell Drive
    Halewood, Merseyside L26 7XB

Green Green Grass Fell Race

Report by Laura B-H

“Green Green Grass fell race is a popular local race in the Clwydian hills. Not one of our counters this year, but 8 green vests still made the trip on a lovely Wednesday evening to represent Felsby. Some great running from the lads and ladies. Congratulations to Janet for winning the FV50 prize and having the biggest smile at the end of the race!”

Results for Helsby

7 Jim O’Hara M 42.06
10 Adam Gordon M40 42.56
13 Ben Fletcher M40 45.00
35 (4th) Laura Hughes F 51.24
59 (1st V50) Janet Robertson F50 56.07
67 Susanne Fletcher F 59.09
74 Ben Williams M 61.28
75 Rachel Arnold F50 62.12


North Wales Half Marathon

Our 9th road counter of the season (how time flies!) saw 10 green vests toeing the line in Conwy. Some excellent results on what I’m told was a tough course (beach and stiles in a road race, really??) and some Helsby runners were in the prizes too. Well done everyone! Jenny has sent in this excellent report, thanks Jen!

Report by Jenny O’Hare

“Ten of the Green Army turned out for this road counter on Saturday and results for Helsby can be viewed on this link below (thank you Ian Rutherford). https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=822141024588169&set=p.822141024588169&type=3&theater

Some notable results include Laura B-H who not only came  first in her age category but also was second lady overall!  For the men, Adam Gordon and Neil Finegan finished an incredible 9th and 10th respectively and every one of us survived to run another day  – definitely worth mentioning!

As a race, this half definitely had something for everyone… sand, sea air, fast flat road, undulating hills, really steep hills, off-road tracks and trails, steep down-hills (track and road), incredible fell-style terrain and beautiful views combined with a local village atmosphere and lots of local support.

The first and last mile were across the (energy-sapping but beautiful) beach followed by four miles of fast tarmac along the promenade towards Penmaenmawr village.  The climb begins from mile 5 and follows the Old Conway road up to the Mountain View pub.  With a total climb of 312 Metres this race is not the easiest half marathon but it is stunning – and memorable.  Travelling back down Conway Mountain from mile 9 was very tricky as it was hard not to be distracted by the incredible views but it was more fell/trail than road at this point and concentration was vital.  The last few miles bring you back down towards the beach and are a good opportunity to pick up the pace again (if your legs are not destroyed) on good old solid tarmac.  Then you only have one last mile of sand to deal with…

My own personal highlights include seeing Joe and Mario at the top of the Sychnant Pass (I nearly cried), and the views…Did I mention the views??  This is a fab race if you like a challenge, or if, like me you are just not sure whether you prefer, road, trail, fell, town, coast or country, this race has everything.   I absolutely loved it!”

Excellent results everyone. Congratulations to Laura and Adam for bagging the maximum points in the road counter series, great running on a tough course!

Helsby results:

9th  Adam Gordon  01:28:51
10th  Neil Finegan  01:30:18
26th Ian Rutherford  01:40:13
29th  Phil Tomkinson  01:42:24
45th  Laura Baynham-Hughes  01:45:14 (2nd lady overall!)
106th  David Feakes  01:56:51
150th  Paul Roberts  02:01:40
1720nd  Lesley Feaks  02:05:18
238th  Jennifer O’Hare  02:14:50
294th  Tanya Downes  02:25:54

Full results here:

Photos here:

Lakeland 50 (50 miles, 9,500ft climbing), Dalemain to Coniston

Report by Graham Ireland

“Leaving myself plenty of time, I set off on Friday towards Coniston to see the start of the 100 mile race, (a clockwise loop starting and finishing in Coniston), watch the token rendition of Nessun Dorma, and smugly sit back knowing I’d taken the “easy” 50 mile option. That and waving off our very own Chris Collins, who hadn’t taken the easy option! Friday M6 traffic however had other plans for me, and missing all the above I managed to get there at exactly the right time to register with everyone else who’d signed up, complete with children, grandparents, dogs and what seemed like the entire population of the Lake District! 

At the compulsory briefing the next morning I looked round to size up the competition, and to my great delight I was sat next to a guy who’d been weighed in at 120kg, (compulsory weigh in at registration), and looked like he’d never ran a day in his life… At least I wasn’t going to be last, but fair play to him all the same!  Brushing off the panther sighting a few days before as just the crazy ramblings of a man from St Helens, (organisers words, not mine), and the jokes about the 100 mile competitors all working in IT, (sorry Chris), we all headed off to Dalemain for the start. 

Gun went off at 11:30 and we started on the 4 mile loop of the estate before heading out onto the course proper.  Leaving the woman with a Husky harnessed to her chest for dust, (surely there should be a rule against that… Although she did look Russian!), I blitzed the first 10 miles.  Out of the first CP and up to the highest point on the course and my day started to go downhill, literally and figuratively.  Pretty sure the Husky woman had poisoned the jelly babies at the first CP the night before! After what seemed like forever I made it down to Haweswater and round to CP2 at Mardale Head where I was met by the friendly faces of the Delamere Spartans. Big thanks to them for sorting me out and sending me on my way, topped up on soup and a questionable selection of sandwiches, (I’m a ham and cheese man myself), I limped my way off round the rest of the course.

The biggest test of will came not with any climbing or running, but at CP5 Chapel Stile, (or CP13 for the 100 milers), where we were met with a fire pit and sofas…. Is it me or is that just cruel? I managed to drag myself away… just, head torch on, for the final 10 mile push.  Things got distinctly wet thereafter under foot, with blisters and pain management the name of the game. 

By the time I hit the last CP I was feeling terrible, but with just 3.5 miles and 1000ft of climbing to go I was nearly there.  Massive thanks again to the marshal who sorted me out with with a cup of tea and told me to man up and get on with it, both of which I needed. I set off up the Tilberthwaite steps and started to feel human again, (still not sure what he put in that tea!), and bombed it down the other side into Coniston and the finish in 13 hours 17 minutes and 260th overall, over 1 hr 30 mins better than 2014. 

Tough race, but great atmosphere, very well organised, and fantastic marshals.  Would recommend to anyone looking for that sort of distance. 

Final note and massive kudos to Chris Collins who arrived in Coniston less than 1 minute before me after completing the full 100 mile course, and with an amazing overall placing.  I’m sure he’ll have his own stories to tell, but hats off sir, a truly amazing achievement.”


Congratulations Graham and Chris, amazing achievement guys!

Helena Tipping 10k

FB_IMG_1470210867260_resizedAlso on Sunday was the Helena Tipping 10k which saw 3 Helsby vests pounding the roads of Wrexham Industrial Estate. The first 5k is pretty much downhill but you then need to claw back the lost elevation for the second half and if judged correctly can be a very fast course. Carol Shaw had an excellent race to win her age group and Gaz was very close to his PB, just missing out by a few seconds. I managed to achieve one of my fastest 10k times of the year so was very happy with the result. Well done everyone, a great day was had by all and thank you to Louise Spruce for her support and taking the photographs. Also a quick mention to RD Michael Harrington (cute fruits) for the flawless organisation and quick publishing of the results, I’d recommend any of his races as his team always delivers a fantastic event on the day.

Helsby results below:

12th Colin Thompson 35.34
45th Gaz O’Connor 39.04
122nd Carol Shaw 46.34 (1st in age cat)

Full results can be found here http://cutefruitevents.niftyentries.com/Results/helenatipping10k

Photos here:


An excellent weekend of parkruns saw Jenny Illidge storm around to take 1st lady at Chester parkrun and Widnes saw a podium finish for Fitzy who grabbed a brilliant 2nd place overall. Well done both and well done to everyone else who took part in a parkrun, please find the consolidated results for Helsby below:


That’s all this week. Please let me know if I have missed any races or results. All future race reports to the same email address – helsby-race-reports@outlook.com.

Col T


Helsby RC weekly round-up 25th Apr to 1st May 2016

Hi everyone

A very busy week for the Green Army and an excellent selection of reports in the inbox. Thank you very much to everyone who has contributed. As usual all reports to be sent to helsby-race-reports@outlook.com.

Strap into your seat belts, it’s a long one!

Helsby RC Awards Presentation Evening

A fantastic evening at our annual awards cermony! Well done to everyone who won an award and a big thank you to Jackie (host), Chris Igoe (DJ), Dave & Leslie Feakes (Catering) and Donna Geer & Ian Landucci (Stataticians). Jackie has sent the following report in which includes all the winners from the evening:

Here’s a list of the awards made at our presentation evening on Friday celebrating a year of excellent running at Helsby Running Club. We can run well and party well!! Here’s a list of trophy winners for the 2015/16 club counter season. Well done to all who ran throughout the year and here’s to lots of club counters by all this season!
For those interested in the detail, a full set of results/calculations will be put on the blog soon (we need to strip out the age data before it goes viral!)
A reminder about this coming Wed #Helsby vs #Felsby competition at Dinas Bran 4.3m 1150ft, 7:15 start LL20 8TG, for those wanting to car share please meet at the club ready to leave at 6pm.
A reminder about the fist race in the mini trail series at Thurstaston Country Park  Tues 10th at 7:15, again meet at club at  6:15
Plus the running club AGM the following evening 11th after out club run, 8:30 in the
in the upstairs tea room – please come along and discuss what you want of Helsby Running Club over the next 12 months. The plan is to keep it shorter this year by having written reports circulated in advance, with questions & answers on what and how we do things followed by the all important election of officers. If anyone would like to become part of the committee then please let me know in advance of the meeting jackiekeasley@btinternet.com. Jane Ashbrook is stepping down as Ladies Club captain; we thank Jane for all her input and ideas these last couple of years.
Cheers and thanks
Roads Championship
Helsby Running Club Road Running Championship 2015 Men’s Champion Chris Fitzpatrick
Helsby Running Club Road Running Championship 2015 Men’s Runner Up Adam Gordon
Helsby Running Club Road Running Championship 2015 Men’s Senior Winner Colin Thompson
Helsby Running Club Road Running Championship 2015 Men’s V40 Winner Neil Finegan
Helsby Running Club Road Running Championship 2015 Men’s V45 Winner Gary O’Connor
Helsby Running Club Road Running Championship 2015 Men’s V50 Winner Ian Landucci
Helsby Running Club Road Running Championship 2015 Men’s V60 Winner Geoff Shaw
Helsby Running Club Road Running Championship 2015 Ladies Champion (Joint) Joanne Lacking
Helsby Running Club Road Running Championship 2015 Ladies Champion (Joint) Jane Ashbrook
Helsby Running Club Road Running Championship 2015 Ladies V40 Winner Jo Farwell
Helsby Running Club Road Running Championship 2015 Ladies V45 Winner Donna Geer
Helsby Running Club Road Running Championship 2015 Ladies V50 Winner Carol Shaw
Helsby Running Club Road Running Championship 2015 Ladies V55 Winner Jackie Keasley
Helsby Running Club Road Running Championship 2015 Ladies V60 Winner Janet Shaw
Fells Championship
Helsby Running Club Fell Running Championship 2015 Men’s Champion Jim O’Hara
Helsby Running Club Fell Running Championship 2015 Men’s Runner Up Phil Gillard
Helsby Running Club Fell Running Championship 2015 Men’s Senior Winner Phil Roberts
Helsby Running Club Fell Running Championship 2015 Men’s V45 Winner Jim Jones
Helsby Running Club Fell Running Championship 2015 Men’s V50 Winner Steve Riley
Helsby Running Club Fell Running Championship 2015 Men’s V60 Winner Andy Robinson
Helsby Running Club Fell Running Championship 2015 Ladies Winner Jane Ashbrook
Helsby Running Club Fell Running Championship 2015 Ladies Runner Up Laura Baynham-Hughes
Cross Country Championship
Helsby Running Club Cross Country Championship 2015/16 Men’s 1st Place Ian Landucci
Helsby Running Club Cross Country Championship 2015/16 Men’s 2nd Place Ben Fletcher
Helsby Running Club Cross Country Championship 2015/16 Men’s 3rd Place Chris Murray
Helsby Running Club Cross Country Championship 2015/16 Ladies 1st Place Jane Ashbrook
Helsby Running Club Cross Country Championship 2015/16 Ladies 2nd Place Lesley Feakes
Helsby Running Club Cross Country Championship 2015/16 Ladies 3rd Place Vanessa Griffiths
Borders League
Helsby Running Club Borders League 2015/16 Men’s 1st place Chris Fitzpatrick
Helsby Running Club Borders League 2015/16 Men’s 2nd place Adam Gordon
Helsby Running Club Borders League 2015/16 Men’s 3rd place Colin Thompson
Helsby Running Club Borders League 2015/16 Men’s 4th place Ian Rutherford
Helsby Running Club Borders League 2015/16 Ladies 1st place Jo Lacking
Helsby Running Club Borders League 2015/16 Ladies 2nd place Carol Shaw
Helsby Running Club Borders League 2015/16 Ladies 3rd place Laura Baynham-Hughes
Helsby Running Club Borders League 2015/16 Ladies 4th place Rachel Holden
Club Champions
Helsby Running Club Men’s Club Champion 2015/16 Ian Landucci
Helsby Running Club Ladies Club Champion 2015/16 Jane Ashbrook
Mini Fells
Helsby Running Club Men’s Mini Fells Champion 2015/16 Men’s 1st place Adam Gordon
Helsby Running Club Ladies Mini Fells Champion 2015/16 Ladies 1st place Laura Baynham-Hughes
Runners Runner
Helsby Running Club Runners Runner 2015/16 Laura Baynham-Hughes
Most Improved Runner
Helsby Running Club Most Improved Runner 2015/16 Mens Winner Ian Hamling
2015/16 Ladies Winner Alison Halsall
Greatest Comeback
Helsby Running Club Greatest Comeback 2015/16 Overall Winner Gareth Boyd
2015/16 Runner Up Claire-Louise Miller

Borders League #7 (Prestatyn)

An excellent report has been sent in from BL Coordinator Fitzy for our final race at Prestatyn:

So this was our last borders league race of the season and was probably the most important for the men, having fighting off relegation over the last 2 meetings we had to make sure we had 10 runners turn up and make sure we didn’t get any penalty points, and after an end of season fixture change for a midweek race from Shotton to Prestatyn I was a little worried we might struggle….oh how wrong was I!
Another superb turn out by the men’s and ladies team seen us fight hail, wind and rain for an out and back course along the sea front, which was great going out but not so great coming back with a full on head wind.
Some fantastic performances on the night yet again but I won’t single anyone out what I will say is it’s been a pleasure seeing you all turn up week after week and making me a very happy man. We are the envy of other clubs and I really do think that we will just get stronger, even some of the Felsby crew seemed to have enjoyed the races (probably because there free)
Some awards that we received included 1st V35 for Jo Lacking, 9th & 10th Overall men, myself and Col T, and 2nd V50 lady for Carol S.
Hopefully you’ve enjoyed it as much as me, now for a few months off before pre season training starts in July and I start moaning at everyone for breaking rule 4.3 thou shall not drink 48 hours before a borders league race.
For full results see below

Mid Cheshire 5k

It was great to see an array of green vests at our 5th road counter on Thursday. By all accounts the weather wasn’t very favourable but with a lightening quick course it was always a good opportunity to have a crack at a 5k PB. Over to Fitzy with another fab report…

30 of the green army travelled a hell of a long way to Kingsley on Thursday night which could only be described as a lightning fast 5k course, and I now know the reasons why, a mile downhill seen everyone post extremely quick first miles splits whilst the second wasn’t so fast as it was all “uphill”. You are then greeted with the start line again with still another 1k to run, yet again all downhill to the finish
You can see why some of the top running clubs around the northwest had plenty of runners out in a very strong field. pb’s galore were being broken much to the annoyance of Gaz and Helen sat on their sofa’s at home 🙂
If you’ve not done this before and want a PB this is the best course around by far and at a tenner it’s great value for money, they even through in hale for at least 5 mins at the end…lovely
For full results
Helsby results:
41st Chris Fitzpatrick 00:17:20
46th Colin Bishop 00:17:30 (1st in age cat)
54th Adam Gordon 00:17:41
94th Christopher Murray 00:18:52
101st James Higgins 00:19:07
104th Ian Hamling 00:19:12
108th Jane Ashbrook 00:19:15 (2nd in age cat)
113th Richard Hankins 00:19:20
133rd Paul Frodsham 00:19:44
135th Joanne Lacking 00:19:47 (2nd in age cat)
141st Davyd Michell 00:19:56
162nd Carl Pratt 00:20:23
182nd Tim Palmer 00:20:54
184th David Feakes 00:20:55
200th Michael Williams 00:21:25
201st Carol Shaw 00:21:38 (2nd in age cat)
234th Rachael Holden 00:22:29
235th Stephen Wiggins 00:22:38
245th David Madders 00:22:47
255th Debbie Read 00:23:11 (3rd in age cat)
269th Geoff Collins 00:23:35
296th David Wiggins 00:25:03
299th Jackie Keasley 00:25:16
306th Lesley Feakes 00:25:32
357th Janet Shaw 00:29:36 (2nd in age cat)

Llangynhafal Loop Fell Race

Twixt in between Borders, 5k and 10k Green Army members still managed to get out onto the hilly stuff. Big thanks to Tim Palmer for this report…

As a local favourite but not a counter this year, the Llangynhafal Loop saw a Helsby turn-out of 7. Janet Robertson, Sue Buck, Jim Jones and Tim Palmer running; Joe, Mario and Andy Smith supporting/marshalling/taking photos. On arrival at the Golden Lion, the weather kept most in their cars or the pub and the walk to the start wasn’t much better (some of the Helsby contingent were sure whether it was hail or snow). However the weather improved for the race. The infamous gully was as always a challenge; but the last climb (which is a bit of sting of the tail) was improved with Helsby supporters at the bottom and top – thanks Joe, Mario and Andy. Tim was the first Helsby runner home just ahead of Jim; followed by Janet and Sue. As usual, all ended up in the Golden Lion for the presentation – a highly recommended race. Full results awaiting on www.wfra.org.uk


Saddleworth Cake Race

image1Any race with “cake” in the title is worth a go at, Ben Fletcher and Jamie Dowdall certainly thought so and found themselves towing the line in Saddleworth, over to Ben for his take on the race…

I decided to give the Saddleworth Cake Race at Diggle a go. This fell race is famous for the cakes after the race & it didn’t disappoint, there were 3 huge tables full of them! It was £5 to enter or free if you supplied a cake bargain!

At just short of 10miles 1700ft over Saddlewoth moor it’s a cracking race. I wasn’t expecting to see anyone I knew, then Jamie Dowdall in his Darwen vest shows up. After a quick chat with Jamie we were off into the hills.

Ben Fletcher 1.18.03 22nd Jamie Dowdall 1.33.18 89th

Full results


 Liverpool Spring 10k (6th road counter)
The Liverpool Spring 10k is 2 laps of Sefton Park, billed as flat but not exactly – some energy sapping long gradients and tight turns certainly made it a bit of a challenge, as did the horrible weather. That didn’t hinder our Green Army contingent from setting PBs galore though, a huge well done to everyone for running so well and some of our newer members who have improved so much recently. Big thank you to Colin and Jane Bishop for their support on the day, Jane even had a selection of fresh baked cakes for us at the finish to replenish those depleted carbs! Result!
Please find the Helsby results below:

16th Colin Thompson 0:35:26
83rd Gary O’Connor 0:38:47
136th Richard Hankins 0:40:38
172nd Davyd Michell 0:41:47
198th Carl Pratt 0:42:00
382nd Helen Owens 0:45:43
383rd Rachael Holden 0:46:02
669th Stephen Wiggins 0:49:00
732nd Rhea Thomas 0:49:48
1092nd Tanya Downes 0:53:36
1101st David Wiggins 0:53:42

Please find a link to the consolidated parkrun results from Saturday. Well done to everyone who ran, especially Col Bishop for another fantastic win at Widnes! Well done mate.
And finally, it’s big congratulations to June Swift and Jim O’Hara who have been selected to run for Cheshire at the Inter-Counties Fell Running Championships on 14th May. Well deserved after a brilliant season, be sure to congratulate them on their fantastic achievement.
Phew! That’s it this week. Many thanks for all the excellent reports, if I have missed anything please get in touch and I can always update the blog later on.

Helsby RC Xmas & New Year round-up 2015

Hi everyone

Happy new year to you all and welcome to the Xmas & New Year round-up. A few green vests were out and about racing over the festive period so let’s get started with an excellent report sent in by Ben Fletcher…

Auld Land Syne Fell race

untitled“The Auld Lang Syne fell race is traditionally known as the end of season fell finale and attracts a strong field of runners, most in fancy dress. It is so popular you have to get your entry in quick, all 420 places sold out in 2 days, luckily our cheque arrived in the post on time and we made the start list.

untitled3New Year’s Eve (race day) arrived and we were both full of colds, but we decided to go for it anyway and just enjoy it.

We arrived at Penistone Hill in West Yorkshire and it was a tad bit chilly, we registered and got ready mingling with everything from Stormtroopers to a weightlifter with his extra large Dumbbell!

The legendary Dave Woodhead started us off with a bagpiper playing as we left the quarry and headed into the hills.

untitled4The route was a out and back with a loop taking in Top Withens summit and had a nice slippy bit in the middle where you drop down into a beck where I was having a great battle with Tony the Tiger and Suzanne was battling it out with a Stormtrooper and a Sumo.

Really recommend this race, plus you get the bonus of a bottle of Old Leg Over beer at the end.”


Ben 113th 57.10

Suzanne 329th 72.29 

video of start https://youtu.be/qcmd0b4DRjA

Liverbirds (double marathon)


Ivan and Dave Madders ventured to Liverpool on new years eve to catch the first race of the Liverbirds double, over to Dave for his report….

“Each new years eve ( and new years day if you’re particularly keen ) there is a marathon along Otterspool promenade in Liverpool called the Liverbird marathon double. No frills, £20 entry, paid direct to a choice of 2 charities, supply your own drinks/supplies and you’re away.

Ivan davies and myself entered this year and duly arrived on the promenade with 200 or so other madmen for the 10am start.

The route goes alongside the Mersey from adjacent to the albert dock Travelodge up to the end of the prom at Aigburth and back with this 6.55 mile loop being ran 4 times.

Ivan being a 3 hour marathoner set off like a greyhound leaving me to shuffle along at 8.30 pace. After 2 laps the weather as forecast took a turn for the worst with strong winds and driving rain creating horrendous conditions for marathon running.

Ivan suffering with a pulled groin soldiered on for 3 laps ( in a very solid time of 2.25 ) whilst I shuffled my way to the finish in a time of around 4.24.

38 plucky souls did both days with elite runner Terry Forrest running an unbelievable 2.38/2.45 successive marathons.

Great Craic between runners made this event a worthy effort with great support from other runners plus Its not every race the winner high fives all the other competitors on his way to a 2.38!

Awful conditions but I’ll be back!”

NWSL XC Race #6 (Arrowe Park)


We had a good turn out of green vests for the penultimate cross country race in the Sunday League series and it was fantastic to get a full team out for both the men and ladies despite the appalling weather. The venue was at Arrowe Park (hosted by Pensby) and the course consisted of 2 laps of energy sapping gloopy mud around the park. Thank you to all who turned up and well done to Ben Fletcher who had a stormer to take the first Helsby home honours and top 20 finish  and Joanne Lacking for another fine display of running to take the chequered flag for the ladies. Also big kudos to Tanya Downes for her first foray into XC running on what was a tough course, she seemed to enjoy it and will hopefully be back for more pain! The next and final race is on Sunday 21st February at Birchwood Park – make a note in your diaries.

A big thank you to Joe, Mario, Suzanne Fletcher and Chris Collins for their support around the course, Mario also coordinated the tokens and race positions at the finish. Please find the Helsby results below:

19th Ben Fletcher
21st  Colin Thompson
61st  Phillip Roberts
67th  Derek Morris
96th  Paul Frodsham
108th  Ian Landucci
115th  Tim Palmer
143rd  David Feakes
202nd  Edward Roberts

15th  Joanne Lacking
17th  Jane Ashbrook
32nd  Vanessa Griffiths
68th  Rachael Holden
73rd Lesley Feakes

96th  Tanya Downes

The mens team were 5th on the day and the ladies 4th.

Full results here http://www.stevesaunders.co.uk/xc/2015/race5_15.pdf


A few more parkrun results than usual due to some extra events over Christmas. Please find all results below. Congrats to Colin Bishop on a double win at Widnes and well done to everyone else who took part. Helsby results below:



84th Phil GILLARD 00:24:50
94th Geoff COLLINS 00:25:18
101st Louise MCEVELEY 00:25:43
207th Anne BELL 00:30:58

Ellesmere Port

28th Benjamin John WILLIAMS 00:28:22 


1st Colin BISHOP 00:17:42
29th Michael WILLIAMS 00:23:15
47th Chris HATTON 00:25:26



2nd Colin BISHOP 17:41
72nd Rhea THOMAS 26:56


Gloucester North

35th Jackie KEASLEY 00:30:16 


22nd Gareth BOYD 00:20:32
55th David FEAKES 00:23:30
151st Lesley FEAKES 00:28:14
160th David WIGGINS 00:28:35
161st Stephen WIGGINS 00:28:36 


1st Colin BISHOP 00:17:46
15th Joanne LACKING 00:22:03
20th Michael WILLIAMS 00:23:02 


68th Geoff COLLINS 00:23:46

All results can be found here http://www.parkrun.com/results/consolidatedclub/?clubNum=1721


  • Wed 6 Jan4VHM medal making – we need lots of help to re-packing this years medals – please come along to the HCSC bar after our training run and help out as many hands make light work, chip barms provided.
  • Sat 30 Jan – Northern Cross Country Championships, Blackburn. Another good day out for runners & spectators! Must be 1st claim for Helsby to be eligible, born in Cheshire or have resided for last 9 months. Pre-entry, so if you wish to run please let Paul Foster know before 13th Jan mooeyf@hotmail.com

That’s all this week. If you got this far thank you for reading and please let me know if I have missed any races. Remember, all results and reports should be sent to helsby-race-reports@outlook.com otherwise we could easily miss something if posted on social media.

Keep on running!


Helsby weekly round-up 16th – 22nd November 2015

Hi everyone

Jackie has taken the reins of the blog this week, we also have a few reports too. Thank you for all these, remember all reports to helsby-race-reports@outlook.com

Saturday was the 41st Penmaenmawr Fell Race the last in our Fell club counter series,  10 miles and  600m of climbing.  From the small village of Capelulo with its village hall and Fairy Glen Pub and organised by local runner Chris Near.

The drive out there was spectacular marking the start of winter finally, cold, gale force winds but sunshine, blue sky and a considerable snow covering on the Carnedds. The sea along the A55 coast line wild and threatening.

The race was pre-entry with a limit of 250 due to the narrow lanes and limited parking. Just under 200 muffled up runners were on the start line at 10:30 am, the other 50 were probably sensibly still snuggled up at home!

The first incline warmed us up but most still chose to wear their waterproof tops all the way around.  The going was surprisingly pleasant with mainly wide sheep nibbled grassy paths to the first check point at the Penmaenmawr Quarry. Then down into the notoriously boggy area cutting across to high surfaced road above Rowen, where we were greeted by Joe and Mario and the usual loud cheers + a flask of hot coffee (which I didn’t stop for as by then I was running with a local lady who was keeping a steady pace and knew the way). A high level undulating traverse with lovely views down to the Conwy valley but straight into the jaws of the wind, before a final steep descent back into Capelulo.   A bottle of local beer for all finishers. Saddleworth Runners turn up every year to take part in this race and raise funds for charity. This year they had a large boiling urn full of hotdogs which at first seemed to be selling slowly. The tea and homemade biscuits in the village hall doing much better. Plus the pub was serving free soup and rolls and was cosy and warm and packed with thirsty beer drinkers. This race was getting better and better! We were all called out of the pub and back to the village hall by Chris for the lively presentation and suddenly the sale of hot dogs hit the roof – I wonder why!

A course record and lot’s of fast ladies from the Hunters Hill Boggers (HBT) who had travelled down all the way from Edinburgh for a girlie weekend in Wales!!  A good green vests turout and some good running by all!

1  Matt Roberts 1:08:38  Calder Valley who smashed the course record, previously held by Lloyd Taggart
3  Lloyd Taggert 1:15:19
20 Ben Fletcher 1:25:51
23 Briony Curtis  1:26:30 HBT 1st lady
27 Chris Baynham-Hughes 1:37:42
39 Phil Roberts  1:30:38
50 Ian Landucci 1:34:18
59 Steve Riley 1:36:48
72 Tim Palmer 1:39:53
73 Laura Baynham-Hughes 1:39:53
94 Andy Robinson 1:43:12
164 Chris Hatton 2:00:53
167 Jackie Keasley 2:04:11

Photos here






Steve and the winner Loving his matching gloves!

CBH has also sent in an excellent report for this race, please see below:

The overnight cold snap and fierce winds made for a great journey to the race – Snow covered peaks of the Carneddau and some serious 6 foot rollers out on the coast framed what was going to be a spectacular day. In a day that made even the most committed short wearer consider full length tights or pedal pushers for the ladies, there was a slightly more tense atmosphere than usual at the start. The best news of all though was that visibility was clear, so on a course which has so many dramatic vistas we knew we were in for a treat.

The race itself is starts with a tough ascent which then keeps on giving as it heads out to reveal the coast and Anglesey. As we started to level out Drum and Foel Fras came into view in all their splendid snow covered glory. I was not alone in my inadvertent out aloud “Wow” as we levelled out and I got a chance to look up. From the North West corner of the course the race turns south over the bogs which were remarkably kind this year, though energy sapping all the same. Coming back around to the finish there are several miles of undulating trails alongside a fantastic dry stone wall. There was snow cover in places and really gave a fantastic finish to the Felsby series. The view of the Clwydians turns into a the gentle sweeping blades of the offshore windfarm; something I always find relaxing. The descent proved as hairy as ever into the finish. Plenty of battles out there between the Felsby contingent, but none so close as Tim and Laura – Laura showing no mercy on the descent and almost snaking Tim on the line. The results show the same time, but after a photo finish the spoils were given to Tim.

In usual tradition of these reports I must just point out the cost vs reward equation: £6.50 bought every entrant a jaw dropping course, genuine personal challenge and a true sense of freedom; in addition we all got a bottle of real ale, soup and a roll. Pretty damn tough to beat I reckon.

Results wise it was Ben Fletcher put on a master class to be first home for Helsby in 1:21:51 and 20th place overall & 10th in age group. He was followed by CBH (1:27:42 – 27th) and Phil Roberts (1:30:38 – 39th). In the Ladies Laura B-H (1:39:53 – 11th lady in cat) was back first followed by Jackie Keasley (2:04:11 & 9th in Cat).

Pen_finish Pen1
Pos (age) Time Name
20th (10th) 01:25:51 Ben Fletcher
27th (12th) 1.27.42 Chris Baynham-Hughes
39th (16th) 1.30.38 Phillip Roberts
50th (7th) 1.34.18 Ian Landucci
59th (9th) 1.36.48 Steve Riley
72nd (12th) 1.39.53 Tim Palmer
73rd (11th) 1.39.53 Laura Baynham-Hughes
94th (7th) 1.43.12 Andy Robinson
164th (16th) 2.00.53 Chris Hatton
167th (9th) 2.04.11 Jackie Keasley

Full results here: pen results (1)

Then a hop skip and a jump followed via Llandudno for the evening to the final road race counter of the season in Conwy – the popular Conwy Half organised by Run Wales.

untitled5The 9:15 fun run for kids was ran in a deluge and would maybe have put kids off running for life.  However with 15mins to go the rain stopped and the sun started to come out. A number of starters were cold and drenched on the line but at least it cleared up for the start.

Starting under spectacular backdrop of the castle, across the bridge to Deganwy through some major puddles and onto the soggy beach path to West Beach LLandudno, across to East beach and the start ofthe long drag around the great Orme on the narrow road above the cliffs before returning from West Beach the same way.

untitled6Miles 7 to 9 along the Orme road with time to stop for a photo!    An impressive sub 1:30 for Neil and very close for Ian. Well done everyone and especially to David Wiggins on his comeback to halves after a 25 year break and to Chris who has been injured. A PB for Tanya and well done to Jo who though she would not do another half again!

The three of us ran around together and got plenty of come on Helsby cheers, but the best one was come on “3 peas in a pod”, as Shan says “if it had been raining we’d have been mushy peas”!


Gun Time Gun Position Mat Time Mat Position
Neil Finegan 01:28:57 111 01:28:42 114
Ian Rutherford 01:30:46 143 01:30:30 146
Jane Ashbrook 01:38:46 326 01:36:51 301
Jim Jones 01:45:37 557 01:44:56 611
Michael Williams 01:49:09 711 01:44:36 588
Tim Igoe 01:52:08 832 01:48:00 748
Geoff Collins 01:52:51 863 01:52:20 960
David Wiggins 02:09:22 1600 02:05:12 1565
Chris Igoe 02:09:22 1601 02:05:12 1564
Stephen Wiggins 02:09:22 1602 02:05:13 1568
Tanya Downes 02:19:49 1956 02:15:38 1942
Jackie Keasley 02:20:34 1965 02:16:23 1958
Jo Farwell 02:20:34 1966 02:16:23 1959


untitled4 untitled3

Start – note the two father and son combinations! Still smiling at the finish!

XC Sunday League Race #3 (Beacon Park)

Not got any reports from Sundays XC but the quote of the day has to be from Sue Buck “Very muddy!!In fact at the butties afterwards, the organiser apologised for the 10 yards of the race that had no mud”
Helsby results below:
18th Colin Bishop
36th Ben Fletcher
64th Gareth Boyd
96th Chris Murray
116th Darren O’Connor
129th Ian Hamling
151st David Feakes

20th Joanne Lacking
28th Vanessa Griffiths
41st Janet Robertson
45th Rachel Arnold
62nd Suzanne Fletcher
67th Lesley Feakes

The men were 6th on the day and the ladies 7th. The next race is at Town Park, Runcorn. As it’s local let’s try and get a good turn out for this!

Full results here http://www.stevesaunders.co.uk/xc/2015/race3_15.pdf

Tim Palmer has sent in the following report for the Arnside Knott Fell Race, over to Tim….

As my part of the multitude of Helsby runners running two races in the weekend, Jenny and I were the Green Army representatives at the Arnside Knott Fell Race (BS). This is a lovely little fell race up Arnside Knott which overlooks the Kent estuary and Morecambe Way. It has a fairly unusual feature of a fell race; in that you go down almost to sea level (the wet-side of a seawall) twice in the race. The views were stunning across the estuary into the Lakes, the cakes were excellent (as usual), the weather was excellent,…what more can you want…?
Results awaited…
Worth saying that the prize for the best ‘double’ of the weekend must go to Jackie with Penmaenmawr Fell Race followed by Conwy Half Marathon (I make that 23.5 miles with 2,500 ft of climbing). Also, Ben did the double of Pen fell race followed by XC.

Forthcoming Xmas Events

There’s is a lot coming up over Xmas and into the New Year and I’ll send an email summarising it all soon. In the meantime advance plugs for:

Our next talk – Wed 2nd Dec – Tim Palmer on Orienteering – Chip Supper – Please see separate email from Lesley

HCSC’s Christmas Party on Saturday 5th December. Message from the club exec. Please note that this is TICKET ONLY and furthermore that numbers need to be confirmed with the outside caterer, no later than Tuesday 1st December.  Can I once again ask all sections to promote this to your members, via email, text and whatever Social Media groups that you utilise (poster attached for you to circulate and display in your own areas).  I’ll contact everyone again on Monday-week for final numbers so each sporting section please try to drum up some support please and confirm numbers?  Coming together socially to support the club on the 5th is surely a step in the right direction and avoid the threat of the club closing?

If folks can go please let me know, I know its between the clubs night out in Chester and a Border League race but if you can support it please let me know. jackiekeasley@btinternet.com Unfortunately I’m away on hols so can’t make it, if anyone can offer to co-ordinate tickets I would be very grateful.

The Sandstone Trail Challenge will open for entries on 1 December.  If you want to run 33 miles on Saturday 7 May 2016 then this is the event for you!  This year all the places for runners had gone by the end of December, so you need to get your entry in asap.

Any finally, in the running clubs attempt at using the club more we have decided to open up our Xmas Handicap on Wed 23rd Dec to all sections and hope to fill the lounge. Chris Igoe has kindly volunteered to follow it all up with a Xmas disco.  It’s the night before Xmas eve so hopefully you can make it.



Helsby weekly round-up 14th – 20th September 2015

Welcome to this week’s racing news. Apologies it is so late this week. Work deadlines and life got in the way! Sorry for the disruption.

Please remember to send your race reports to:


otherwise we don’t know about them and could miss them. I know a number of you post into Facebook which is great, but it means we generally miss them as they get buried in the whole list of posts. If you’re at a race/ event then please decide amongst you who will put together the report so we don’t miss a thing… and we wouldn’t want to miss a thing now would we 🙂

Essentially all we’re looking for is the following:
– The name of the event and the distance & type; e.g., Sutton 6, Road.
– A small amount of detail from the event to give it some context; e.g., for last week’s LSU it could have read: ‘Long, biblical rain, insanely hilly. Fantastic’.
– The results or a link to the results with any special mentions for performances. e.g., for the LSU it could have included ‘Special mention for Phil Roberts for best swim in an ultra marathon’. Feel free to add more of course, but this gives us enough to form a decent newsletter.

Simples 🙂

This week is a tale of PBs, podium placing and the benefits of running after a heavy night… oh, and Roy’s back! Enjoy.

Child minding rota = more racing!
Finally, with the Borders and the XC season upon us and with ever pressing family commitments I posted this on Facebook this week. If you’re interested then please let me know:

Who’d be interested in joining the Helsby winter Child minding circle? With border leagues and the winter XC coming up it can be difficult for both parents to run or even just one parent to run. Rather than miss out on the fun Fitzy and I came up with the suggestion that we take it in turns to mind the children at the race. It means that you might miss one race in X races (where X is the number in the child minding circle) but you’ll get to do X-1 races which is more than 0!

Should be reasonably straight forward:
– we’ll just have a rota
– the person on the rota for that week must commit to being at the race or find somebody willing to swap
– Parents drop their children off with the person for that day in suitable clothing
– The adult(s) can bring a football, frisby, organise tag or hide and seek, cheering, etc.
– Parents finish race knackered
– Children are returned knackered from running about/ playing
– everybody’s happy!

Who’s in??


Road Running

Sutton 6
Huge thanks to Geoff Collins for pulling together this race report for us. Nice to see people out competing in the club counters – only two left to go! For details check the race calendar here:

There was a good contingent of 13 Helsby runners at this year’s Sutton 6 10k race, with some new PB’s for some! This was the 33rd event of what originally started as a 6 mile race to raise funds to build Guilden Sutton Village Hall in 1982. More importantly this year the race was a club ‘counter’.
Weather conditions were good for running, with a light wind, the sun disappearing behind the clouds before the race started. This year the race was chip timed for the first time. This seemed to lead to a few problems it would seem! Rather than the now common chip on the number, or disposable shoe tag we got the older reusable button chip worn on the ankle with a Velcro belt!

Of course it’s always a good idea to make sure the chip is attached to you before the race starts rather than left somewhere else!

The course is mainly flat finishing on a slightly lower elevation than where it starts. However there is an incline from the junction of Wicker Lane/School Lane up Porters Hill into Oakland’s for the finish. If you don’t know the area this little hill (by Helsby standards anyway) always seems to catch people by surprise. As someone said to me later they ‘weren’t expected that in an area which looks so flat’!

Fitzy leading the chants of ‘Green Army’ at the start, apparently that’s normal I understand. Although he didn’t appear to have his special water bottle this time. I hoped this wouldn’t affect his performance, or the five Guinness and the large Chinese he consumed the night before!

The race got underway, as usual Jo and Mario making their customary encouraging appearances at different points around the course, and my resident photographer trying to catch everyone in Hare Lane. The pictures are now on Facebook. I don’t know how Jo Lacking managed to elude the camera by the way! An added attraction this year being, West Cheshire marshal Kay entertaining the runners with her cow bell in Wicker Lane!

First home for Helsby was Chris Fitzpatrick in 19th place, 1m 06s faster than his time on last year’s Sutton 6. Adam Gordon 2m 15s faster than last year. Fortunately for Adam the organisers have accepted his time and he wasn’t disadvantaged without his timing chip! First Helsby lady was Jo Lacking. Without doubt the two star performers of the day with new 10k PB’s were Jo Farwell who took a massive 3m 24s off her time in the Ellesmere 10k, and Tanya who took 1m 20s off her Ellesmere time! Well done ladies!

The full Helsby results are:

Gun time  Chip time  
Chris Fitzpatrick  00:37:04  00:36:59 7
Adam Gordon  00:37:44  00:37:43 12
Neil Finegan  00:38:05  00:38:00 15
Joanne Lacking  00:42:33  00:42:24 3
Jim Jones  00:42:52  00:42:47 9
Jane Ashbrook  00:44:58  00:44:49 4
Gary O’Connor  00:45:12  00:45:07 15
Geoff Collins  00:47:26  00:47:21 6
Geoff Shaw  00:48:14  00:48:07 12
Jo Farwell  00:54:01  00:53:49 10
Tanya Downes  00:54:25  00:54:13 12
Jen O’Hare  00:55:20  00:55:07 14
Graham Lloyd  00:55:36  00:55:19  

Ed – Nice work Fitzy, the first of the post heavy night performances!

Warrington Half & 10K
The Warrington half (or the English Half Marathon as they like to call it) received headlines last year primarily due to the incredible extras Gareth Boyd was treated to by paying extra for the VIP treatment (might be worth speak to him before signing up :)) however this year the headlines are for all the right reasons. Thanks to Jane Bishop and Neil Hughes for on the ground details.

cc15cdc7-e40f-4c8e-86b6-c8738bcb18d5In brief: Great conditions for it, cool and fresh with the sunshine breaking through, plenty of spectators lining the route, a new course this year starting near to and finishing at the Golden gates…Certainly one to consider for next year. All you need to know really! Well, ok if you want a little more then how about new member and long suffering wife of Chris, Gill Fitzpatrick, smashing out a new PB; comfortably dipping under the hour in 57:34; fantastic running Gill!

01bef563-620f-4269-85c8-93693637487bStill not enough? Well Helsby’s own lightening bolt Colin Bishop came in 2nd overall and 1st in age category with a time 35.02 – with so many fantastic performances it’s easy to take such results for granted and miss just how much Colin puts into his running so it’s nice to see the rewards being reaped by the fastest M50 in the country!

PBs weren’t just restricted to the half, Neil Hughes stormed around to pick up a new PB of 1:48:36. Huge congratulations.

Pos. Name Gun Time Chip Time Chip Pos. Gender Pos. Cat. Cat. Pos.
207 Carl Pratt 01:34:26 01:34:23 212 195 HM-M 114
690 Neil Hughes 01:49:10 01:48:36 711 591 HM-M 295
697 Stephen Roach 01:49:15 01:49:07 738 597 HM-M 300
784 Michael Williams 01:51:30 01:48:58 728 662 HM-M 331


Pos. Name Gun Time Chip Time Chip Pos. Gender Pos. Cat. Cat. Pos.
2 Colin Bishop 00:35:02 00:35:02 2 2 10k-M50 1
30 Ian Hamling 00:43:12 00:42:58 30 29 10k-M 18
210 Gill Fitzpatrick 00:57:34 00:54:56 203 61 10k-F 35

The Roy Gaskill 10K
Not sure what race it was, but here is the race report from Roy that he posted on Facebook. Please read the instructions at the start of the post Roy so next time there is no chance of us missing your results.

‘I finished 113 in a time of 46.40 grand 10k at aintree racecourse’

Well done Roy, great to see you back racing again.

Fell Running 

King John’s Castle
Details for this fell race are a little vague as it would appear the organisers haven’t mastered the internet… or even know it exists as there was no amount of googling that could return me the results or even any details other than other clubs like ours mentioning it as a good one for an entry into fell running. This means that unfortunately I don’t have the results yet, but we’ll ensure that once we get them we’ll get them put up on the blog for the long term record.

This race was the last of the new to fell mini series which has proved very popular within the club – certainly something to continue next year in one form or another. It’s resulted in plenty of wide eyed looks and stories of trauma, but above all dramatic scenery, smiles, exhilaration, soup, cakes and post race libations! … plus more than one additional member of the #Fellsby subsection.

Over to Laura for her race report, which is also a little vague, but the reasons for this will become apparent 🙂

More than 10 green vests turned up for King John’s castle fell race on a fabulous sunny Sunday. The field was pretty small with teams from Helsby, Denby and Buckley battling it out. The 5 mile course ended up nearer 6 as most of us went a bit wrong but there were no tears and we were all still smiling at the end! Well done to Emma Barns who completed her first fell race. A great one to try next year if you want to join team #Fellsby.

Adam Gordon managed the second of two gaffs for the week by throwing away first place due to a wrong turn, allowing Jim Jones to take the spoils for Helsby. I’m so sorry that there are no results out so I can’t tell you who came in first that was competing in the New to fells mini series from the gents. On the Ladies side, Laura Baynham-Hughes was first lady back for Helsby and first for the new to Fells mini series on the day. Laura’s performance marked the second piece of annecdotal evidence that the route to a great performance is in the prepartion the night before (Seen dancing in Rosies at 2am on the morning of the race meant Laura arrived with just minutes to spare after being convinced that the best hangover cure was a fell race). Fantastic performances all round by the sounds of things.

Cross Country

No races, but remember the season is coming up soon so get your spikes ready!

Park Run

Delamere and Widnes saw green shirts in action. here’s the link for details:


Please see the race calendars:

Helsby weekly round-up 31st August – 4th September 2015

Hello everyone

A very busy week of racing for the green army so lots to report! Thank you for all the race reports, if there are any more then please send to helsby-race-reports@outlook.com and I can always update the blog at a later date.

Firstly some reminders of races and events coming up soon:

  • Don’t forget it’s multi-terrain race #2 tonight. Ladies are doing well in 3rd place,  men 17th, 5 men and 3 ladies to count. A great set of 5-6 mile fairly local races at £1 each so a bargain! 7pm start at Royden Park http://www.stevesaunders.co.uk/mterrain.htm
  • Mini Fell Counter – Saturday 19th September –  11am – St Johns Castle –  A 4.6 mile race starting in Lanarmon yn Ial with 865ft of climbing. A good introduction to fell running out near the Clwydian Hills with a lovely village pub at the end! Entries on the day and only a few pounds!
  • Road Counter – Sunday 20th September – 11am Sutton 6 – A local 10K race just up the road at Guilden Sutton. A pleasant flat course along mainly quite country lane. Entries online or by post and on day subject to 400 limit.   http://www.westcheshireac.co.uk/roadracing/sutton6/
  • A link to Tim Palmers comprehensive race calendar can be found here https://helsbyrunningclub.wordpress.com/2015-event-listing/
  • Xmas party – Friday 4th Decemeber. More details to follow from Fitzy but get it down in your diaries asap (or he will be very disappointed!)



Our weekly parkrun stats are below. Some good performances this week with a podium position for Janet and a new PB for Rachael! Well done all.


45th      Janet ROBERTSON  00:23:47 (2nd lady)
47th      Geoff COLLINS         00:23:52
66th     Carol SHAW               00:24:50


63rd     Rachael HOLDEN     00:26:25 (new PB!)


The first of the muti-terrain races saw 12 helsby runners toeing the line in Thurstaston. A beautiful evening and perfect race conditions saw some excellent running from the Green Army. Congratulations to Max Wainwright who was first home for Helsby in 15th place overall and Jo Lacking who was first home for the ladies. The ladies are currently 3rd in the league and men are 17th. Nice to see some new faces on the night too, well done everyone.

Helsby results here:

15th      Max Wainwright      29:46
79th      Jim Jones                  33:47
84th     Jim Higgins               34:04
120th    Jamie Dowdall         35:14
174th    Geoff Collins             39:10
194th    Paul Foster                41:02

9th        Jo Lacking                 36:10
13th      Vanessa Griffiths      36:32
27th      Louise McEvely        38:14
91st       Donna Geer               47:51
92nd     Pam Hankinson        47:53
98th     Janet Shaw                 48:21

Full results can be found here http://www.stevesaunders.co.uk/mt/2015/mtrace1_15.pdf


Halewood 5k

Ian Hamling was our sole Helsby representative at the HW5k this month and ran a stormer to break the 20 minute barrier for the first time. Well done! Ian is one of our newer members and has been training hard at the track each week which is starting to pay dividends in his race times. Quality training really does work so if you would like to get some speed into your training then join us at 6.30pm each Monday at Helsby High School.

Full results for the race can be found here https://sites.google.com/site/halewood5kresultsservice/


Brenig Trail

Ben Williams has kindly sent in a race report for the Brenig Trail race on Saturday. Over to you Ben…

Dave Wiggins and I took on the Brenig Trail race on Saturday – nine miles around Llyn Brenig reservoir on the Denbigh Moors.  The scenic course was mainly on stony or paved tracks, with a stretch of wet muddy footpath at the top end of the lake. Road shoes were the order of the day, and many people were cursing their way through the muddy stretch. The course was ‘undulating’ rather than hilly, but there was very little of it on the level apart from the heartbreaking last half mile along the dam where the finish never seemed to get any closer. The weather was fantastic, almost too hot at one point and I was grateful for a bit of shade when the trail disappeared into the forest.

The race was nice and low-key, very well organised by Denbigh Harriers and marshalled by local cadets. The turnout was boosted by Wilmslow, who I assume were using it as a club counter and who made up almost a third of the field. It deserves support and it would be good to see a few more of the Green Army there next year.

Special mention goes to Steve Wiggins who dropped (well, hobbled) in to support on his way back from the ROF, and bought the coffees as well.

Results at http://www.denbighharriers.com/downloads/Brenig_Results_2015.pdf

Montaine Trail 10k/HM (Delamere)

Sunday saw the Montaine Trail event which has proved popular with Helsby runners in the past (anything hilly and muddy seems to be a magnet for the green vest!) A tough course with a run up Old Pale is certainly not for the faint hearted but that didn’t deter the 4 runners from the Helsby contingent. Two reports have been sent in for this, thanks guys. First up is Darren:

Not really a big fan of the trails but thought I’d give this a go being so close to home. Tough route – very hilly and muddy in parts. Shoe came off going through a particularly boggy patch and going up old pale at the end was a killer! I would have said definitely not a pb course but Chris somehow managed to get one!

Well organised and enjoyable race. Really good training run for me but I’ll stick to the roads I think…..

And over to Neil Finegan for the next report…

In its second year of running, The Montane trail 26 events at Delamere on Sunday had a choice of 2 routes looping through the central part of the forest and familiar to those who have run the parkrun there.  A 10k and a half marathon choice,  both run on trails finishing together with a  final slog up the old pale – a 200 ft steep climb to take in the views before the downhill to the finish. 

The half route which I completed was a mixture of the main paths around the forest,  combined with some real “off road”  trails.  The amount of rain last week made this a tricky and mucky experience but thankfully the knee deep puddle towards the end cleaned my legs at least.   It was a tough route – only a 750ft climb in the course but the twists and turns made it difficult with the bad conditions under foot.  Every time you started to get a  rhythm and a bit of speed going you were diverted off again through the trees,  dodging the swamps,  tree roots and dog walkers. It was a beautiful September morning and the scenery made the race pass very quickly – but the popularity of the forest on a nice day with non runners added to the difficulty.  

It was a well organised event,  the kids trail event at the start (complete with off road Hill climbs) was particularly good.  A few more stewards and markers would have been appreciated in places but the race kept a nice small scale community atmosphere with 200 runners in the half and 148 in the 10k.  The winner of the half set a new course record of just under 1h 18m.  For Helsby Chris Murray knocked 5 minutes off his previous half marathon PB which is brilliant on a tough course like this.

There was 1 Helsby runner in the 10k and 3 in the half all finishing very well.

Helsby results below:


31st       Stephen Roach          00:51:55

Half Marathon

11th       Neil Finegan              01:29:28
24th       Darren O’Connor       01:36:02
32nd     Christopher Murray   01:40:13

Full results here http://www.trail26.com/events-results.html

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Tim Palmer has kindly sent in the following report for Cilcain, thanks Tim.

The Cilcain Mountain Race saw a good Helsby turn-out – well a good turnout from the Men Vet 50s with Jim Jones, Phil Gillard, Ian Landucci and me. Chris Hatton and Andy Robinson were there representing the more mature members and Ben Fletcher representing others. The race itself is up to top of Moel Famau and back via a slightly different route.

There is some excellent drone footage of the race – see: https://youtube/MEPXLN4ibDo – the drone did lead to some confusion with the Green Army; initial suggestions suggest the drone was…a swarm of bees, flies round the runners, a strimmer…

Unfortunately the results on the WFRA website have an Excel bug in them. From those and the info on the WFRA North Wales series, the following can be de-ciphered….

Helsby results:

31st         FLETCHER, BEN      39:45
45th        JONES, JIM               41:40
53th        GILLARD, PHIL        42:57
54th        PALMER, TIM           42:58
61st        LANDUCCI, IAN        43:55
75th        ROBINSON, ANDY   44:50 or 44:48
115th       HATTON,CHRIS       52:15

Shelf Moor

No reports for our 11th fell counter but I have found the results. Well done to Jimmy O’Hara on another strong run to take maximum points and Laura Baynham Hughes who was first lady home. Well done to everyone else who participated.

Helsby results below:

14th      Jim O’Hara                            00:50:34
38th      Ben Fletcher                         00:58:41
40th     Jim Jones                               00:59:17
54th      Paul Gilliard                          01:00:48
56th      Steve Riley                             01:01:26
71st       Laura Baynham-Hughes    01:06:29
83rd     Rachel Arnold                       01:10:38
85th      Paul Foster                            01:12:48
88th     Chris Hatton                          01:15:03
92nd     Jackie Keasley                       01:18:18

Full results here https://glossopdaleharriers.files.wordpress.com/2013/06/shelfmoor2015results1.pdf

And some photos can found here http://www.overyonderphotography.com/2015/09/06/shelf-moor-fell-race-2015-photos/

Ring O’ Fire

ring-o-fire-routeFinally a massive shout out to Gareth Boyd who completed the epic Ring O’ Fire race over the weekend. Ring O’ Fire is a 135 mile coastal ultra marathon circumnavigating the Isle of Anglesey over 3 days and is one of the toughest trail races in the UK. Well done from all at Helsby RC! Also commiserations to Ste Wiggins who had to pull out of the race due to injury, I’m sure he will be back to fight another day. We will be pestering Gareth and Ste for a full report when they have both recovered but in the meantime all results can be found here http://www.ringofire.co.uk/.


That’s all this week, please let me know if I have missed any races or if you have any more reports please send them over and I can update the blog.

Keep on running!



Helsby weekly round-up 24th – 30th August 2015

Hello all

Welcome to this weeks round-up. A busy week of racing with a mixed bag of races but lets get started with some reminders first.

  • Don’t forget it’s the Wirral Multi-terrain race series this month with the first one tonight (1st Sept). A great little race series which are not too challenging (generally 5 miles) and a good warm up gig for the cross country season ahead. We need 5 men + 3 ladies to make a full team and at £1 per race they are a bit of a bargain! All details can be found here http://www.stevesaunders.co.uk/mterrain.htm.
  • Tim Palmer has kindly put together a comprehensive race calendar which can be found in the pane at the side of the blog under “2015 event listing / race calendar” or by clicking this link https://helsbyrunningclub.wordpress.com/2015-event-listing/. It’s an excellent resource of information and has all the clubs counters plus other races listed.


FB_IMG_1441100876226We had our 10th road counter of the season at the Ellesmere 10k on Sunday (how time flies!) with a somewhat low attendance from the Green Army, which was great news for those looking to grab some club championship points! Excellent running from Chris Murray who bagged himself a new 10k PB (after eventually finding the correct Ellesmere!) and the ever resilient Bish getting a top ten finish and age category win. Well done to all who took part.

Chris has sent in a brilliant report for this race which can be seen below:

“Initially I thought this race was in Ellesmere Port not knowing there was an actual place called Ellesmere so leaving what I thought was loads of time I only managed to arrive a few minutes before the start as people were already lining up to race. The weather was great and not overly warm which was a nice change from the humidity of the previous days. The course itself was relatively flat and started from Ellesmere school meandering along country lanes and scenic tow paths with the finish back the school. A nice coffee and a cake at the finish sealed a great race and a great day.

There were some impressive results with Colin Bishop finishing in a great time of 35.10 and coming 1st in his age category – well done Colin! Everybody else’s results were equally as impressive. All in all it was a great day and a great race, I know I’ll be back next year chasing down a new PB.”

Helsby results below:

10th  Colin Bishop  35.10
103rd  Jim Jones  42.45
140th  Chris Murray  45.03 (10k PB)
219th  Geoff Collins  48.07
402nd  Tanya Downes  55.33
 408th  Donna Geer  55.55
434th  Jo Farwell  57.13

Full results here http://galeforce-events.s3.amazonaws.com/Results/Ellesmere10k2015.html

SA Llego 7

Geoff Collins also ran a 10k on 22nd August at the end of his holiday in Mallorca! He has sent in this excellent report, thanks Geoff and well done.

“SA Llego 7 Malpas-Bonaire, Mallorca – 22 August .

1What better way to spend a Saturday evening at the end of a holiday in Mallorca – a 10k race! So my green vest had another outing – this time in Bonaire (pronounced Bon-eye-ray). It’s a very attractive quiet coastal resort in the hilly North East of Mallorca not far from the old town of Alcudia.

Bonaire sits below an imposing hill called Talaia d’ Alcudia. A hill well worth climbing for the stunning views towards mainland Spain. The 462 runners, just a hand full of English but mainly Spanish set off at 7pm, even at that time it was still really hot, over 30 degrees C! The route takes you out on the (closed) main road 2climbing uphill towards Alcudia before heading down into the town along the shady back lanes. Then you head towards Marina Manresa round the very pretty bay along the seafront path, off road and up over the headland more uphill and finally downhill to Bonaire. I managed to overtake Miguel a runner and local celebrity – judging by the excitement of the spectators. I ran with Miguel earlier in the holiday – more about that later.

3I finished in just over 46m, a lovely scenic run not technically difficult, but very challenging in the heat! Entry cost was just 11 euro’s, for that I got a plum coloured tech t-shirt, chip timing, with plenty to eat and drink afterwards! But no toilets not even one portaloo! Oh well a scramble down the rocks for the customary pre-race wee was unavoidable but the view was spectacular!

Miguel is one of the leaders of an organisation called Runny knows – the way in Mallorca. They organise guided running for tourists in the Pollencia Alucudia area. Organised by Johanna MacDonald a very friendly enthusiastic English runner resident on the island. Fortunately runs start early in the morning when it’s not so hot. I and a group of like-minded runners from all over the UK got together for a couple of very enjoyable runs, this year starting and finishing on the beach. An incentive being to get your clothes off at the end and into the sea! We even shared a bottle of sparkling wine on the beach; it really doesn’t get much better than that!

5Mallorca has lots to offer the runner, the North East has some fantastic hills; most of the longer races on the island take place between October and April when the weather is a lot cooler. In fact it could make a good club weekend running trip. If anyone is interested I would be more than happy to organise something.”


Harrock Hill

Jim Jones, Jamie Dowdall (2nd claim member) and Paul Foster did the 4th Harrock Hill Fell Race on Wednesday night and finished 80th, 86th and 134th respectively in a field of 202 finishers. Full results below:

Ultra-Trail du Mont-Blanc

Chris Baynham Hughes was at the ultra long stuff again on Sunday, this time running the UTMB which is an ultra mountain race in Chamonix (close to the French Swiss border) and is over 105 miles (yes 1-0-5, that’s not a typo!) Massive kudos to Chris for even attempting such an epic race distance in tough sweltering conditions. Over to CBH for his take on the race:

So UTMB turned into my second ever DNF.  I loved it though, what a race! The course is amazing, although very groomed trails compared to the UK, that’s not such a bad thing for 105 miles. In the end though, I couldn’t control my body temp. My guess would be it was in the thirties even at 2500m and with no shade for almost the entire race it meant I got too hot, spent 45 mins trying to reduce it and must have looked bad judging by the degree of attention I was getting by the aid station team. I carried on and the heat increased further still (~35deg) stopped sweating, chundered, spent over an hour trying to reduce it and to up my blood sugar from “not critical, but borderline”. Flipped to shivering. Made the decision to continue, but then changed mind as I filled bottles and realised I had no interest in the food and wouldn’t going forward. It had taken 25 mins to decided to go on. Would have been 12 hour walk and a pyrrhic victory for me. I could easily have had a full night of sleep and started again the next morning, but that’s not why I was there.

Delayed Aftermath for me included a disturbed night of violent projectile vomiting and sleeping on the pavement of an airre like a tramp just outside of Dijon. Don’t regret any of it though, I loved every minute of the race, ran it as I wanted too, was blown away by the beauty of the trail and the pageant of ultrarunning. Amazing.


Please find the results below for the Saturday parkruns. Well done to all who took part.

Delamere parkrun

59th David FEAKES 00:23:51
65th Geoff COLLINS 00:24:11
90th Lesley FEAKES 00:25:18
125th Tim PALMER 00:26:38
149th Jenny PALMER 00:29:00
284th Claire MORTON 00:41:34
283rd Paul BULMER 00:41:34
285th Louise MCEVELEY 00:41:35
286th Stephen WIGGINS 00:41:35

Widnes parkrun

45th Michael WILLIAMS 00:23:48
76th Rachael HOLDEN 00:27:11


Finally our resident party planner Chris Fitzpatrick has asked me to remind everyone about the forthcoming knees up on Friday. The plan is to catch the 6.30pm or 7.30pm train to Chester for a 7-8pm meet in the Old Harkers Arms just off City Road. It promises to be a brilliant night! All are welcome to join in the shenanigans.

That’s all this week. Many thanks to those who sent in race reports this week and remember any future reports can be sent to helsby-race-reports@outlook.com – they help massively in compiling the round-up for the week and are very much appreciated.

Keep on running!


Helsby weekly round-up 17th – 23rd August 2015

Happy Thursday to you all! The school holidays are nearly over, it’ll soon be Christmas and that means only two things; Borders League and Cross Country, so I hope you have all been training hard over the summer months…

On to the trials and tribulations of our green vested athletes, it’s been a quiet week:

First up we have the brutally flat 😉 5k in Capenhurst, which is in memory of Ellesmere Port RC runner, Neil Lavery, last Wednesday the 19th. It is renowned for being a PB course and we had 13 of our illustrious Green Army out on the night. A short report by Derek “Degsy/Messi” Morris follows:

Wednesday 19th saw plenty of the Green Army take part in the EPRC Capenhurst 5k. As we lined up for the start the rain held off which was nice. The hooter took me by surprise as Chris Fitzpatrick must have had a sore throat, as the famous Green Army chant was nowhere to be heard! Anyway the race is a very fast course seemingly slightly downhill for the last 2 miles. I surprised myself ducking under the 19 min mark and with great running by all the Green Army including some PB’s.  It’s definitely one for your calendars next year, and a must if you’re PB hunting.


17:48   Chris Fitzpatrick
18:08   Adam Gordon
18:57   Derek Morris
19:12   Darren O’Connor
20:09   Gary O’Connor
20:20   Joanne Lacking
20:25   Ian Landucci
22:32   Vanessa Griffiths
22:40   Carol Shaw
23:12   Geoff Shaw
23:29   Suzanne Fletcher
25:32   Tanya Downes
26:21   Donna Geer
28:16   Janet Shaw

A Dicky bird even informs me that Chris Fitz actually managed to finish the whole race without clutching his infamous lady’s water bottle. Well done, Chris! Inspirational!

Peris Horseshoe fell race

Huge well done to Jim O’Hara who came a fantastic 6th in this very tough 17.5 mile, 8500ft climb fell race in 4hrs 24 mins. Jim is on great form at the moment and just keeps on knocking out some very tough races most weekends!


Weekly results from our local parkruns:

Delamere parkrun

Rachel ARNOLD          24:59              
Louise MCEVELEY:      26:16
Claire MORTON:         27:25

Widnes parkrun

Colin BISHOP:              17:24 (First)
Michael WILLIAMS:    23:04

News and notes

Tim Palmer has set up a new all singing and dancing race calendar. Huge thanks for Tim! Link is here and this is a great help to all our members.


Up & Running in Chester are holding a 20% discount offer this Bank Holiday weekend to all club runners.


Helsby weekly round-up 20th – 26th July 2015

Hello to all you super fit, green vested, lithe limbed, mountain running, road bashing. park running afleets.  Hope this round up finds you all well.

We have had a fantastic week of running this past week, and I shall start with the fantastic achievement of our CBH (Chris Baynham-Hughes in his official capacity).  He managed to not only win the Marmot24 marathon but he was ecstatic to note he has drawn some fabulous Strava art in the form of a Scottish Highland Terrier!  It’s the little things…  I shall pass you on to CBH for his report but a HUGE well done Chris, you are an unbelievable endurance runner who it seems, was born with an inbuilt GPS system!

Marmot 24

Friday saw me on the M6 heading North to Scotland and the Lowthers for the Marmot24 Mountain Marathon. I was excited, seriously excited in fact as this event had all my favourite things in one:

  • Endurance? Check (12 hour version)
  • Mental challenge? Check (route selection and tactical selection of controls as its score class)
  • Navigation? Check
  • Mountains? Check(ish) – The Lowthers
  • Night running? Check (My 12 hour stint finished midnight sat/sun)
  • Jeopardy? Check (lose points every minute I’m late back and more than 30 minutes = 0 points)

The format was simple, start at 12 noon on Sat and visit as many controls as you can within 12 or 24 hours.

untitledI’d had a firm showing at the Green Green Grass in the week and was feeling good going into and starting the event. Luckily for me this continued throughout and bar 1 control (where I wasted 10 minutes looking for it whilst only a few metres away from it) my Nav was spot on (although still eliciting a cheer on a couple of occasions as I hit them spot on, but wasn’t 100% sure I would J)

The ground was rough but runnable and the climbs were very steep but short; the result being that I was able to run for almost all of it. I had to expand my original route plan several times on the hoof as I was passing through the controls quicker than expected. Things were going very well indeed. The weather was amazing – hot sunshine all day and very little wind – and I felt like I had the place all to myself and only occasionally bumping into other competitors. I was running really well and had run everything so I started to believe I might be in contention by the end of the day.

untitled1Running rough ground in the pitch black with a head torch reflecting off sheep and rabbit eyes left me panicking I’d miss the cut off. I’d taken the risk to get the extra points and I’d bagged two additional controls, but whilst I was still running well the lights of the finishing camp seemed very far away as I tried to descend and get back for the Midnight cut off. Terrified of losing hard earned points I sprinted (well, it felt like that) to the finish.

I arrived with 10 minutes to spare having covered 43.7 miles and 10,500ft (I had my GPS in a tamper proof opaque bag to track me: https://www.strava.com/activities/354240917) I took 25 controls (250 points) and 25 minutes later was confirmed as the winner! My first win ever, I was slightly shocked and very happy indeed.


Snowdonia Trail Marathon

Moving on to more mountain off roading, our Mountain Goat mascot, Jim Jones and his side-kick kid, Philip Roberts with a finely tuned Alec Robertson strapped on their trail shoes and hit the Snowdonia Trail marathon in err, you guessed it… Snowdonia.

Honours go to Alec who finished first in his age category. It was a tough race made even harder by the driving rain at the start and finish with only spells of respite in between. The race started and finished in Llanberis and went through Rhyd Ddu, Beddegelert, Nant Gwynant and Pen y Pass before starting the climb of Snowdon at about 20 miles. The climb up Snowdon in the driving rain was a challenge in itself with a risk of body temperatures dropping if you didn’t keep moving. The route was well marked out but it seems the organisers may have made an error when calculating the distance as a lot of people recorded 29 miles on their devices. It was certainly stamina building getting to 26 miles and finding you’re still nowhere near the finish.

Jim Jones Male 80 MV50 5 Helsby  05:47:56 89
Phillip Roberts Male 86 MOPEN 41 Helsby  05:52:30 96
Alec Robertson Male 194 MV65 1 Helsby  06:59:56 238


Green Green Grass of home fell race

A truly stunning evening saw 17 Helsby vests in the Clwydians for the Green Green Grass of Home fell race. Traditionally the route would change each year, but of late had remained the same. Wednesday saw a new and IMO a vastly improved route – an initially shorter climb followed by a very runnable descent and second climb to return to the original route. Stopping short of Moel Famau it headed back down along the notoriously rough and lunatic looking descent.

The unanimous view was that it would have been a far better choice for the Fell mini series than Hot foot as it was far more runnable and a cracking introduction to fell racing. It was clear on the line that everybody thoroughly enjoyed this one. Speaking of which, huge congratulations to both Jen O’Hare and Donna Geer for taking this on. Donna ran with Jane and Jen with Phil which saw all four of them arrive with big smiles on their faces.

Huge thanks to Mario and Joe for their support on the course. First lady (for Helsby, 5th overall), Laura BH certainly attributed her fine descending to the fact that she knew master descender Mario was watching! With three Helsby vests in the top 10 it was certainly a great showing with Jimmy taking the spoils in 4th, Max in 5th and Adam Gordon in stunning form and 10th on the day. Prizes on the night for Janet Robinson and Nesta for second vet 40 and 50 respectively too!

We contemplated these results with a beer in hand whilst the sun set over beautiful Wales, you can do it from the comfort of your own home here:

Results: http://www.fellrunner.org.uk/results.php?id=2945

Sefton Park 5 mile race

H1Another very well organised race by Mossley Hill AC this year again. As I found out last year it is a very fast flat course with great running from other clubs. However myself and Rachael Holden were there flying the Helsby flag with an impressive 43:49 minutes by Rachael and with myself (Chris Murray) being an exact minute outside of last years time in 34:48. The weather stayed nice and at the end we were rewarded by a medal and a mug although I did read in June that Gordon Ramsay was supposed to be dishing out post race curry however I didn’t see him!


North Wales Half Marathon

Just two Helsby vests took part in another challenging Run Wales Half two weeks after Chirk Castle.  The autumnal conditions arrived in Conwy as forecast with the rain heaviest just before the official off at 11am.  Can’t think there are too many races delayed because the tide hadn’t gone out sufficiently but that’s exactly what happened giving runners and spectators alike a further 15 mins soaking on the beach at Beacons in Conwy Morfa.

A great all terrain race ensued, the beach 1st and last mile was incredibly demanding and energy zapping – the hard sand promised in the race blurb didn’t materialise, it was soft mostly, giving way under foot and the dash across the slippery rocks and pebbles was certainly a first for me in a “road” half marathon!

The next 5 miles or so saw good fast flat road running and then came the climbs as we headed up towards the Sychnant Pass.  The scenery quickly changes as we enter Snowdonia National Park and the earlier tarmac is replaced with trails and the climb up Conwy mountain summit is reached at around the 8.5 mile point.; the scenery spectacular as you’d imagine.

A hairy-scary decent is then the next challenge.  Most (if not all) runners in road shoes struggling with grip down the grassy mountain banks and rocky trails – I managed to do my customary ankle turn in the process.  Once back on tarmac with a couple of miles to complete, past the castle and back towards the marina and then the beach for that tough last mile – this time into a now brisk head-wind!

I was quite pleased with my time of 1 hour 39 mins (41st overall, 12th in cat), with only 9 people running sub 1’30 you get a sense of how tough a course it was – certainly not one for hunting PB’s!  This then makes Neil Finegan’s 1 hour 31 mins and a top 10 finish overall (4th in cat) even more outstanding – superb running from a man in great form – well done mate!

Would highly recommend this race given the multi-terrain challenges – not sure it’d make the Road Championships counter criteria though – one for the fixtures committee to contemplate maybe!?

Harrock Hill 3

Jim Jones and our 2nd claim member Jamie Dowdall did the Harrock Hill ‘3’ race on Wednesday. This is a series of 4 races held every year. Anyone who’s ran the Parboiled Hill Race will be familiar with the area and at least some of the route. These races are on the Fell Running calendar but a with only around a 1000ft of climb and at approx 5 miles they are good trail races. If anyone is looking for an introduction to off road running, this series would be a good start. So watch out for it next year.

Not seen the results yet but with Jim still nursing bruised ribs and what with Jamie coming back from an ankle injury can’t expect too much!


Weekly results from our local parkruns:

Delamere parkrun

David MADDERS:22:07
David FEAKES:22:51
Janet ROBERTSON:23:19
Stephen WIGGINS:24:57
Lesley FEAKES:25:51
Jane ASHBROOK:26:48
Louise MCEVELEY:26:51
Jen O’HARE:27:05 New PB! Well done Jen!
Emma BARNES:29:14
Jenny PALMER:29:28
Tim PALMER:29:29

Warrington parkrun

Colin THOMPSON: 17:58 (2nd place)
Joanne LACKING:21:59 (3rd female)

Ellesmere Port parkrun

Ben WILLIAMS:22:14

Widnes parkrun

Michael WILLIAMS:23:03

News and notes

Calling all Thunder Run runners!

Adidas Thunder Run 24hr

Thunder Run is a 24 hour off-road relay race against the clock ran in teams set in Derbyshire.  It is an incredibly popular event with a massive over-subscription every year.  The 2015 event has just occurred last weekend and it seems from my Facebook poll that there is sufficient interest in a Green Army attempt on this in 2016.  Web registration for the event doesn’t open until October but will literally fill in a matter of hours so we are trying to get organised right now!  It is assumed that the event will occur on the same weekend in July 2016 but is currently unconfirmed.

Team makeup:

Although teams can be solo or pairs, I am looking for interest in teams of 3+ as follows:

Teams of 3-5 can be all male, all female or mixed whereas

Teams of 6-8 must be mixed

We would set up camp either the night before which is advised (a Friday) or the morning of the race.  Once you’re geared up, your first runner will assemble at the start line at 12pm and when the claxon goes, together we won’t finish for 24 hours.

One team member must be on the course at all times during the 24hrs. Runners must complete one full 10km lap before changing over with a team mate but may run 2, 3 or more laps at a time before changeover. The team with the most laps completed when the clock stops after 24hrs will win.

2015 prices and should be used as a guide only for the 2016 event were:

Team up to 5 £272 (£54.40 ea)

Team up to 8 £312 (£39.00 ea)

Further info can of course be found at the Thunder Run website – http://www.tr24.co.uk/

So, are you interested?  If so please drop me an email to register your intent.  I am going to set the cut off for interest at end of August and call a ‘meeting’ (bar after Wed run) in early September to discuss and agree the team makes ups – our Captains will have the casting vote.  Hope that all makes sense.

Cheers Ian Rutherford

email: rutheri@gmail.com

Wirral Multi Terrain series

The fantastic Wirral Multi Terrain late summer series dates are released.  I absolutely loved these races, probably my favourite local races I have ever ran.  Please give them a go, great for beginners too.

MT Race Series Poster 2015

Club night out – Friday 4 September

The results are in, from all 6 of us, and I know there are more than 6 going out!

Friday 4th Sept, we’re heading to Chester, think the plan will be to head on down to the Old Harkers (directions to follow) between 7-8pm and then go on a pub crawl, we can either come back to Frodsham on the last train or stay out and find our own way home, it would be great to see some of the new members and old ones as well coming out to see really why you chose to join Helsby RC, you might want to leave come Saturday morning!

Sorry there wasn’t enough interest to organise a coach, but the trains will do a good enough job, hopefully see you all there.

Helsby weekly round-up 13th-19th July 2015

Hello and welcome to your weekly news round up. The details of the winners have gone out, but it would be remiss of me not to mention the fantastic club awards, BBQ and disco. A great time had by all! Thanks to everybody that contributed and got invovled – especially to Dave and Lesley for organising the food, Bill for slaving behind the BBQ with Dave and Chris for the disco. Naturally there were many others that put a lot into that event, so thank you to all!

One small omission from the awards was Ste Wiggins winning the Joe Beswick Runners Runner Trophy – I think he also won the award for most alcohol consumed from a trophy, but that is a different matter. Steve’s endless support of Paul in particular made him a very deserving winner on the night. Outstanding.

Don’t forget, it’s the Green Green Grass tomorrow (Wednesday) and the Gyrn Gallop on the weekend for the #Fellsby section. Another thing to look forward to is The Summer Multi-terrain races on the Wirral just announced. Tuesday evenings in September, first one on 1st September. Details attached. More details on Steve Saunders website at http://www.stevesaunders.co.uk/

As always, Reports in to helsby-race-reports@outlook.com Please (assuming you wish for them to be included :)) Finally a word from Fitzy – master of mischief – regarding his plans for a Helsby RC night out: Friday 4th Sept, please email me (fitzpatrick_chris@hotmail.com) your preference

1. Frodsham  2. Chester 3. Liverpool  If enough interest and its Chester or Liverpool I will organise a mini bus.

Road Running

3413ddbc-08cd-43ff-a307-cb3f2eb6cd84Not sure No details this time, but a quick well done to Nic Cash and Laura Broughton. Fantastic work ladies and well done on your PBs (Nic – 55:39, and Laura with a season PB of 1:04.

Fell Running

Kentmere Horseshoe

Thanks to Ian for this superb report from the latest Fell race from the club series. The #Fellsby contingent did us proud out there, I was gutted to miss it.

Post race analysis from Ian was – A long way to go but a cracking race. All agreed that we should look to include at least one lakeland classic in the Helsby Fell Series every year – I couldn’t agree more!!!

It’s 1 O’Clock and 7 of Helsby greenest and finest are standing on the lane just below the church in Kentmere. They are not alone,another 350 runners are with them. The starter has just gone through the rules causing much amusement when he warns us that emergency rations will be included in the spot checks of kit at the end of the race. Better not get hungry on the way round, maybe empty wrappers and a few crumbs will save people from a DNQ.

Before the laughter has died down we get the go and promptly break into a walk whilst the large field squeezes down the narrow lane. Eventually we start to run and are getting up to speed when we stop again as the route diverts off the track on to a narrow path. Then we all form into a long line to march up the first mountain. A couple of short diversions means that attempts to gain a few places actually end up losing you a few.

Once at the top of the running starts again but only briefly as a style over a fence forces another halt. After this the running starts in earnest and we head off across the moorland towards the first checkpoint on top of Il Bell. Jim is leading the Helsby pack the rest are all quite close together in the midfield pack. The moorland stretch to Il Bell is not too bad so the steep down hill section off the top comes as a bit of a shock to the legs. But it doesn’t last long and it’s back to the ridge and a combination of mountain side contouring and a stroll along the High Street. Though in this case the High Street doesn’t have any shops but is a more literal version being an old roman road across the tops.

After about 50 minutes of racing we get to see the welcome sight of the top of the horseshoe. After several miles of chasing I arrive at the checkpoint just behind Phil. What I don’t notice at this point is that Steve is right behind me. This sets the 3 of us up for a cracking second half battle.

The first section after the turn is a fairly straight forward moorland section and I keep pace with Phil until we suddenly reach a short but steep descent. After slipping a couple of times I slow down to avoid falling on some of the sharp rocks and Phil starts to open a gap. It is at this point I discover just how close Steve is as he comes flying past first me then Phil (I think Mario must having been giving him some lessons).

Steve then rapidly ascends the next climb and gets a decent gap over Phil and me. Now we get a long section of moorland which is a mixture of flat and downhill. This should be an easy section but on tired legs I manage to trip over a rock and go flying. Back up with only a grazed knee but a few seconds lost on Steve and Phil.

A minute or two later we hit the final checkpoint on the top of Kentmere Pike and from here it’s downhill to the finish, all be it 3 miles down hill. My legs start to recover a bit on my favourite fell race terrain “down hill but not too steep” After about a mile I catch up with Phil but we are still some way behind Steve but at least he is still in sight. All going well then we hit the final descent off the fells on to the road. This was probably the trickiest bit of the course being steep, rocky and down a slippy stream bed. I slow down rapidly and Phil starts to open up a gap. I manage to stay on my feet and get to the road but now a good way behind Phil.

Still a mile to go so try and persuade my legs that they aren’t tired and get my road legs going. Can now see that Phil is gaining on Steve who looks like he might be tiring a bit. As we cut through some well made trails Phil overhauls Steve and I push on to see if I can do the same.

Suddenly have to apply the brakes as realise there is a sign, cunningly hidden by a bush, showing the fell race goes hard right over a style. Just when you thought it was all road to the finish a short twisty section of path drops you down to the bridge over the river. Even better the path has a nice lot of rocks to avoid, which I don’t and go flying for the second time. Again not too much damage done but a matching graze on the other knee.

Up and running again and now on the road again. Just get into my stride when two cars turn on to the road in front of me and they are going slowly as they have two runners in front of them. I want to go faster but can’t get round them as the roads are too narrow. Then one of the cars spots me and pulls over into a gateway to let me pass. I then catch up with the second car and follow it for ages though in reality probably only a couple of hundred yards. Then the 2nd car spots me pulls to one side and slows down as I overtake (First time I’ve past a car in a race!). Now it’s full pelt to the finish.

As I turn sharp left I can see the finishing field I can also see Phil just about to cross the line. One last push sees me overtake a runner but not Steve who has now turned on to the field and is dashing to the finish.

At last I get to the line and finish in just under 2 hours 15 mins.

So was I disappointed about losing out to Phil and Steve. Not at all it was the best bit of racing I been involved in for ages. I am already looking forward to the rematch.

Finishing positions

44th Jim O’Hara. 1hr 52mins 50 secs
150th Phil Gillard 2hr 13mins 30 secs
155th Steve Riley 2hr 13mins 53 secs
157th Ian Landucci 2hr 14mins 08 secs
188th Andy Robinson 2hr 19mins 41 secs
207th Jane Ashbrook 2hr 20mins 57secs
215th Tim Palmer 2hr 23mins 07secs

Widdop Fell Race

News from the ever competitive Mr. Jim Jones – sounds like a painful one, but I guess that is one of the occupational hazards eh Jim! 🙂

I did the Widdop Fell Race on Wednesday night in the Heptonstall area. It was BM category race of 7 miles and 1200ft of climb. It was a great route that follows a lot of well defined paths but also had a lot of challenging knee high tussocks and shoulder high bracken. The weather was good but the setting sun made it hard to see where you were putting your feet at times- as i duly found out! The  area is well worth a visit for walking or running – start at the pack Horse Inn and follow the route on the Calder Valley Fell Runners site http://www.cvfr.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2011/07/Widdop.jpg.

I’ll probably remember this race for the wrong reasons though, took a tumble at 3 miles and been nursing bruised ribs since. Managed to finish 68 out of 114 – full results: http://www.cvfr.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2011/07/Widdop-20151.pdf

Long Distance Trail & Ultras Laugavegurinn ultra maraþon

8f265a39-778e-4cd2-90c4-ca1675556fe2Young Maximilian of Frodsham travelled to Iceland for the Laugavegurinn ultra maraþon. A mere 55KM and no less! Trotting in with a massive grin on his face and 16th place overall. The winner was clearly head and shoulders ahead of the field finishing a full 30 minutes before second place.

Maximilian spent 5:32:51 out there in varying temperatures and conditions underfoot – he swears that there was 10km of snow at first… you be the judge! Hat tipped Max, great to see that Helsby vest getting around the world. Speaking of which, Geoff Collins has been out and about in one of my favourite parts of the world: Northumberland. Over to Geoff for his report from the Northumberland Coastal run.

7f5134ed-858e-4af2-8ac1-1e78dbb37e65This year I ran this race wearing a green Helsby RC vest for the first time. Confident I would be the first finisher (and only runner) for Helsby! Outside the North East, few people know about this event. My NE running friends jokingly suggested I should say this is a rubbish event and very poorly organised! That couldn’t be further from the truth, this race is a really gem, with beautiful stunning views all the way!

Alnwick Harriers organise this race, this year celebrating its 35th anniversary. Alnwick is of course much better known for its famous castle and garden, which featured in the Harry Potter films. The first ever Beadnell to Alnmouth Race was held in 1979, with only 12 competitors. In the beginning competitors had to choose their own route starting in the sandy bay next to Beadnell Harbour and then heading south running to Alnmouth (approximately 14 miles). This year there were 1,200 entrants and 997 finishers.

Apart from one or two sensitive areas the course is unmarked and competitors choose their own route. The established course makes its way from Beadnell starting on the beach, towards Alnmouth using the coastal footpaths and a couple of short sections on tarmac. From Beadnell Bay you head South via Newton Links, Low Newton By The Sea, Dunstan Golf Course, passing the impressive Dunstanburgh Castle, Craster Village, The Heughs, Cullernose Point, Howick, Sugar Sands, Boulmer, Foxton Beach, and finishes on the beach at Alnmouth. There are rocks, seaweed, lots of sand, running water and the sea lapping at your feet to negotiate. Wet feet are guaranteed.

We left Newcastle in the rain at 7.30, by the time we arrived it was dry cool and much brighter, although there was a quite a brisk South Westerly breeze blowing as we all lined up for the start. Just before the race started I spoke to Mary Rees from Wallasey AC who was the first lady vet 60 finisher today!

a85d8ac3-eb4e-4365-a9c6-ae26e1fcdadcThe start is always wet, as you follow the retreating tide round the bay, past the bird sanctuary aiming for the top of the sand dunes. You cross Brunton Burn where there is a lot of flowing water.

From High Newton you start to climb on the coastal path towards Dunstanburgh Castle.  The castle stands very majestically on the horizon especially today with perfect visibility.  The path undulates away from the Castle as you head towards Craster a very pretty village where there is the distinctive aroma from Robinson’s Kipper smokery! Onwards towards Boulmer where the Search & Rescue Helicopter station is (which closes later this year).

62a17bff-e575-4223-b571-19d86d8d289aThen you start a gradual climb along the road out of Bulmer. Trying my hardest to get as much speed on this section. Then you descend down the steps towards Foxton beach. That’s where I noticed a load of people jumping up and down shouting ‘look there’s someone from Helsby here’!  In my excitement I almost lost it as I launched myself at speed onto the beach. On the sand I realise the wind is almost a headwind.  It’s hard going digging in and trying to get some speed on the sand, threading your way past and over the seaweed and rocks.  Finally you aim for the finish arch way in the distance at Alnmouth.

c32897fd-6976-4298-a942-cab83145408aThe race was won by Carl Avery in 1hr 15m, first lady was Emma Holt 1hr 29m, both from Morpeth Harriers. I took a more sedate 1hr 55m – at least I was 3 minutes faster than last time.  And you get a lovely quality More Mile long sleeved t-shirt with zip up front and reflective trim!

9a4732b6-f09a-41c7-9f7a-1e45831a675fGreat work Geoff – certainly a race I think Mrs. Baynham-Hughes would like a go at next year.

Park Run

A handful of Helsby vests out on the Park Run this week. See here for full details:  http://www.parkrun.com/results/consolidatedclub/?clubNum=1721 – Well done to all!