Race Report July to September 2009

Macclesfield Half Marathon


Only 4 Harriers made it to this popular race, that enjoys an interesting and undulating course. One of the Harriers is a new joiner – good run Joe – and one is a longer term member who has been away from the area for a couple of years – welcome back John! The race was won by Nathaniel Williams of North Yorkshire Moors AC in a time of 1:09:58 and the first lady home was Olivia Walwyn of Altrincham & Dist. AC in 1:19:10 1323 runners finished. Harriers results: Full results , , ,Joe Parkin

Biddenham River Run 10k


A warm, sunny day and a scenic river route made for an enjoyable day out in the village of Biddenham, just outside Bedford. The course was largely flat and followed the banks of the river Great Ouse, taking a loop through the country park along a mixture of trails and paths. Some narrow pathways and gates, along with a couple of footbridges caused a few bottlenecks around the course and made fast times more difficult to obtain. Fortunately, I was inspired by the presence of my father in the first race of his career to knock more than a minute of my previous best to finish in 54:49, in 155th out 364 finishers. As the only Harrier home, however, I can only claim the moral victory of first past the post on this occasion! James Thorpe senior, a recent convert to running at the age of – well, let’s just say he’s a V55, finished in a very encouraging time of 1:00:01 and promptly vowed to go under the hour in the next one. I think we’ve both got the running bug! The race was won by Simon Jackson of Fairland’s Valley Spartans in a time of 37:40.

Report by James Thorpe


Windsor Half Marathon

Although over two hours away I entered this race on the invitation of my daughter Caroline so she and her husband Shane could run while Grandma Sue babysat grandson Gabriel. Windsor Great Park covers a huge area and the race consisted of one lap of 4.5 miles and one of 7.5 with a straight downhill run of one mile to the finish, all within the park on good tarmac paths. The course was called undulating, which it certainly was with several testing climbs. It was a beautiful day for a picnic but a bit warm for running at one o’clock, with temperatures up to 26c, which resulted in several people requiring medical help and ambulances in attendance. Lucozade were well represented with a large marquee containing endless goodies, running advice and computerised race time predictors. The race was won by Scott Overall of Blackheath and Bromley in 1.06.11. First lady and 8th finisher was Susie Bush unnattached in 1.18.05. Shane did 1.31.16 in 98th place. I finished in 1.54.18. in 1248 place out of 4630 finishers and 8th out of 37 aged over 60 finishers. Caroline did 2.24.42 which I thought was great for her first half marathon on limited training. The race was well organised with plenty of marshalls and water stations. I enjoyed the day although it took 1.5 hours to get off the car park.

Graham Williams



Thirty seven Harriers turnout on beautiful evening, to run the 59th handicap, with the Sabin family taking the honours, with mother Karen winning with a good time of 33-20, increasing her handicap to 5 minutes from 45 second. Elder son Nathan ran his best race to date, with a time of 27-10, only new boy Russell Baron with a better time, and beating Chris Ross and Pete Sarson running, what a run, and with younger brother Tom only 58 seconds behind. The Harriers expect great times from these two in the cross country. My favourite to win was Liz Stanyer, although she improved by nearly five minutes, 6th place was the best Liz could manage. . KAREN SABIN RECEIVING THE MEMORIAL CUP FROM MARGIE HODGETTS

Little Aston 5ml

A perfect day for racing – warm but not too hot and no wind at all. This is a lovely race – very slightly undulating but a loop along pretty country lanes. It is a really friendly event, fairly small – hence the opportunity to do quite well ( I was second lady with a very unspectacular time). I was pleased to make a new acquaintance with a Stafford Harrier there – John (we didn’t get as far as surnames) , we do get around us harriers! I would highly recommend this race – the funds raised to go the local primary school. Ruth Umerah


Rob and I ventured up to Newcastle for our annual trip for the great north run. As usual we over indulged on wine, beer and food the night before but as the race didn’t start till 10.45am on the Sunday we had time to recover. It was a lovely sunny day with around 50,000 starters many dressed in various fancy dress outfits. We started in zone B so was through the start line after a minute, unfortunately too late to catch Martin Lel up. I found the first 5 miles a struggle then got my second wind and did the next 7 miles in a decent pace for me. The last mile along the coast road was tough but managed it in 1hr 40m which I was pleased with but I was a bit angry with myself when scooby do overtook me on the last mile.. Rob finished in 1hr 48m. The occasion was superb with spectators lining the streets from start to finish giving plenty of encouragement We finished the day with fish and chips on the beach before the long drive home. . . . Ps – that is not a silly hat I am wearing in the photo

Thanks to Tim Hough for this report.


Jackie Allen sent me this set of results -AND a personal experience report from her. WELL DONE JACKIE.

As this was my first half marathon I really didn’t know what to expect and was quite nervous at the start. The atmosphere was fantastic and everyone was in good spirits. I started back in zone I which meant it took me about 23 minutes just to cross the start line! But then it was all systems go and apart from being a little warm all went well. The weather was fantastic for spectators who lined the entire route and gave the extra bit of encouragement (and water from their water pistols) just when it was needed. It was my first half and now I want to beat it! I would recommend this event to anyone who has never done this distance before as the crowd really do keep you going. J


Antrobus Cabbage Cantor 10k


Not being very good at singing for my supper I instead decided to run for my Sunday lunch, well part of it. So a quick hop up the M6 to Cheshire and the village of Antrobus for a 10k run round the Cheshire countryside was the order of the day. The race was a two lap affair of the country lanes and to my surprise, totally traffic free. The course was as flat as you could have asked for with the old garmin confirming that 95 percent was definitely on the flat with a slight incline between 3/4km and 8/9km which meant you had a great slope down into the finish, which was on the field of the local school. The goody bag was first rate T-shirt, medal and of course the trusty cabbage, and all following a very reasonable entry fee There was also a 3km and 5km race for the juniors which was well attended 221 entered the 10k race which was won by Paul Dodsworth in a time of 36:00 The first lady home was Maggie Fenn in a time of 43:55. Being the only Harrier I can’t really claim to be first Harrier home, but I would like to claim a seasons best time of 56:49 (improving slowly). A perfect PB course for those of you interested, with next years race already booked in the calendar for Sunday 19 September starting at midday (wwwcabbagecanter.org.uk). Stuart Fowlie

Sutton Park Relays


A select band of Harriers competed in the Midland Counties AA Road Relays on Sutton Park (Sutton Coldfield) on Saturday. Although our teams are never quite “up there” with the best, the spirit of team relay racing makes for an enjoyable afternoon’s racing for those who do take part. And seeing the top club competitors running can be enjoyable and inspiring.

The Senior Men’s 6 x 5.847 km team finished 75th out of 85 teams

Leg 1 Tom Hobbins 21:20

Leg 2 Paul Douglas 22:38

Leg 3 Jason Littlewood 26:07

Leg 4 Andy Bourne 26:54

Leg 5 Eddie Smith 27:17

Leg 6 Mark Bentley 25:04

The Senior Woman’s 4 x 4.315 Km “A” team Finished 45th out of 60 teams.

The “B” team only had 3 runners A Team

Leg 1 Tracy Gee 19:31

Leg 2 Caroline Nickol 20:37

Leg 3 Helen Smith 21:03

Leg 4 Jenny Addison 20:15

B Team

Leg 1 Chris Skellern 18:35

Leg 2 Liz Stanyer 20:43

Leg 3 Karen Murray 23:08

Leg 4 No Runner .


Start of the Ladies relays MORE PHOTO’S HERE : .. MEN … LADIES

Lake Vyrnwy


A very sunny and warm day, but with shade protection much of the way around the lake. A very popular race that was sold out for entries by the end of May. Race was won by Ben Fish of BlackburnHarriers in 1:06:55, with the first female home Claire Martin of Telford AC in 1:18:53. A great turnout of 31 Harriers enjoyed a great day trip organised by Pete Burns.

The Harriers ‘A’ team was 15th out of 79 teams and the Lady Harriers ‘A’ team was 9th out of 60 teams Well done to Claire Corfield-Carr (photo) on gaining 1st Female Junior place and to those who ran PB’s for the distance. Peter Sarson finished 1st V60 and beat his previous ‘old man’ PB time by 1 second! It was all smiles BEFORE the race and mainly smiles AFTER the race as well. SEE MORE PHOTO’s OF THE DAY

Nottingham Robin Hood Marathon


Well done to Tracy Kenny in her first Marathon (must be a mid-life crisis Tracy !?). She finished in 1,250th place in a time of 5hrs 11min 24secs. Unfortunately it appears there weren’t any other Harriers there to support her.


Ipstones 5ml


Race won by Ben Gamble of SMM in 27:47 and 1st female home was Ruth Watchorn-Rice (FV40) in 32:41 A very warm afternoon for running ! Harriers running were:

Clapham Common 10k


While babysitting my granddaughter Zoe I decided to take in the local race which was only a ten minute walk from my son’s house. The race is one of a series of five between April and October consisting of three times round part of the common run on paths, tracks and grass. Although completely flat apart from a couple of minor hills, the course was not too easy due to the rough surface of some of the track, some sharp turns and conjestion for the first mile. Weather conditions were fine. The race was won by Steve Woolley in 36.03, the first lady who was third finisher was Rosalind Kiernan in 36.35 the second lady finished in 43.34. There were no Club names published or age group results. I finished in 48.31 in 181 place out of 505 finishers. I enjoyed the race as it was so convenient and will probably do it again if in the area when one is on. However £17 was a lot of money for a T shirt and a bottle of water as the series is organised by Innovation Sports. Graham Williams

Lichfield 10k


Nearly 700 runners completed this undulating course, mainly through country lanes, including 19 Harriers:

And the girls put the boys to shame! The Men could only manage 12th team out of 14, whereas the ladies gained 1st, 7th AND 13th teams out of 14. Well done Ladies !! Thanks to Sara Broome for pointing this out to me.

It was a dull but dry morning, with just a touch of breeze to keep us cooler than otherwise. The worst part of the course is the climb between 6 & 7 Km, not too steep or long but bad enough at that stage. Well done to Chris Skellern who gained 2nd FV45 place, and to Carl Spears who beat his previous 10k best by 2mins, and well done to all those who ran. The race was won by youngster James Trollope of Birchfield Harriers in 32:05, with the 1st lady being Sue Harrison (FV35) of Leamington in 37:35


Wolverhampton Marathon & Half


Meanwhile 300 runners completed the Wolverhampton Marathon, but only 4 Harriers were amongst that number.

Mike Saint-Dunn was 45th in 3:19:23

Bernard Wilkes was 131st in 3:48:46 (5th MV55)

Karen Davies was 178th in 4:02:36 (16th lady)

Rob Simpson was 179th in 4:02:36


Race winner was John Trelfa (MV45) of Scarborough AC in 2:43:21and 1st lady home was Dawn Broom (FV45) of Holmfirth Harriers in 3:11:13 I beleive that Chris Owen was the only Harrier to run the Half Marathon. He finished 116th in 1:35:34. A new PB for him by 2 minutes. Well run Chris! Report from Bernard: With the rival attraction of the Lichfield 10k, only 5 Harriers made the short trip to Wolverhampton. The course had been changed slightly to help with the start and mile markers were hard to find as they were written on the road. Chris Owen was our sole representative in the Half Marathon finishing in an excellent time of 1:35:34. 79th open. Four Harriers finished the full Marathon

Mont Blanc Circle


LPTL – La Petite Trotte à Léon (the little trot to Léon) 25th – 30th of August 2009. I met Julie Gardner at the Trig race having previously done my first 100 mile event with her a few years previously . Subsequent to our meeting I received an e-mail asking if I would consider taking part in the LPTL as the third member of the first all women British team to enter the event. The second lady of the team was Alison Brind, Stone Master Marathoner & consultant in Gastroenterology; which I figured might come in useful in case of a medical emergency. It was a chance of a lifetime so with holiday booked from work & no thought of what I was letting myself in for I agreed to make up the team. The training for the event was the hardest & most time consuming I have ever encountered. Guided by our team leader Julie I entered & completed all the advised events. The Fellsman, 61 miles & 3,400 metres, LDWA Wessex 100, The Lakeland 100, 6,300 metres & countless trips to the Lakes to “do hill work”. At this point I would like to thank my hubby Chris who was with me throughout, the best training buddy anybody could wish for ( sorry about all the sleepless nights in a windswept tent or village hall, in places I can’t remember the names of or ever wish to go back to!) So it was at 10:00pm on a Tuesday night in August in Chamonix France, I found myself alongside another 55 teams about to begin LPTL. I must admit that one thing Johnny Foreigner is good at is using the most up to date technology. Each group had a tracker (Our team name was The Midget Gems) & the family at home were involved in watching the teams progress on google earth, so I had up to date texts on my phone on our progress in the event! The event was to complete a circuit of Mont Blanc in the Alps crossing through France, Italy & Switzerland, 245 Km & 21,000 metres of ascent in 114 hours with only 5Km of tarmac track throughout. We had to be completely self supporting & sleep wherever available (if room, in mountain refuges or alternatively use our survival bags or tent on any available mountainside). The ascent on the event is hard to describe. We started one ascent (the usual zig zag path stretching off into the distance at 3pm & reached the mountain refuge just before dark & on another going through the night we looked up to see stars & realised they were the head torches of other teams high above us! Of course one doesn’t come without the other & one descent took us over 5 hours. How can you descend continuously for that amount of time?; it seemed incredible & I realised how small our mountains are here in Britain. Some of the views were the best I’ll probably ever see (when will I ever be on top of the mountains surrounding Mount Blanc with the sun coming up again?). By day 4 however just as you think I can’t go on any longer we reached our last climb & in temperatures of 30+ I realised that we had a chance of completing the event as the 1st British all female team. Coming down into Chamonix reduced us to tears at the sheer relief that we could finally wash & sleep& not have to climb any more. At this point I would also like to thank Brian Langston on foot care advice (Still no blisters!) We completed with only an hour to spare & were one of 11 teams (Note out of 55 started) to complete; which included an all male British team, a good result all round for the Brits! For our completion we received a cow bell & North Face gillet & sheer relief/satisfaction/pride that we as a team of dog walker, physician & receptionist became the 1st all female British team to complete the LPTL. Report by Jill Ross Not wanting to detract from Jill’s fantastic achievement in any way, it seems only fair that we should mention that her husband Chris completed a similar 150km run around Mont Blanc, rather than sit on his derriere, while Jill did hers.



Only 271 runners completed the race this year, with Ben Gamble of SMM winning in 1:18:26 and Ruth Watchorn-Rice of Cheadle RC first lady home in 1:29:29. There were fewer Harriers than usual, as well. Those who did were:

Belper Rugby Rover 30k


A challenging 30km circular run starting and finishing at the Belper Rugby Club grounds in Derbyshire. A third road, a third trails and the rest fields, with three hills (577’, 971’ and 525’ ) with a total climb of 2319’ and only a few muddy spots. Won by Steven Neill of Pudsey & Bramley Fun Runners in 1hr 59:53 (new course record), the race attracts runners from far afield (e.g. Goole, Killamarsh, Dulwich, Doncaster, York) I struggled around in 2hrs 40:06, finishing in 87th place overall, from 323 finishers, but 1st MV60. Pete Sarson

Great Warford 10ml


A nice 10m undulating course on quiet country roads . Two harriers ran, chris owen 1.12.34pb and eric landers 1.21.17. First male was nick jones 53.04 sprectum striders, and first female was liz abbot 1.02.11 from preston harriers ac. A bottle of beer was awarded to all fineshers. 316 ran Weather conditions: over cast with a slight wind Report from: CHRIS OWEN

Cancer Care Cross Bay Challenge


Sharron Hawkins finished 216th overall (out of 237 finishers) in a time of 2hr 16:44


Race the Train 15ml and 5k


Here’s the Train(s) – do they need two engines to beat the runners? The race was won by Gareth Raven of Sale Harriers in 1:21:18 – more than 5mins ahead of the second man home! 959 finished the course including these 11 Harriers in the official results : Here are a few of the happy Harriers at the finish of Race the Train And Richard Bisiker was first Harrier home in the 5ml race. And Edward Simpson enjoyed his run iin the Toddlers Trot!

Staffs. Knot 5ml


448 RUNNERS COMPLETED THE 5 MILE COURSE THIS YEAR, REPRESENTING 47 CLUBS AND 141 UNATTACHED Stafford Harriers fielded 58 runners and gained 3rd Team position in both the Men and Ladies competitions. Well done to everyone who ran.

Meerbrook 15k


Great to see John Greatholder back running after his horrendous accident – he’s even brave enough to admit that the official results show him younger than he actually is – should be M55 ! Caroline Stark & James Thorpe on their way UP, UP, UP the FIRST hill of the race.

Dovedale Dipper 26mls


Well now I’m reminded how someone feels when they’ve taken nearly 5hrs to run a marathon —kna****ed ! Wasn’t sure whether to do this one or not, but have enjoyed it in the last few years, so wanted to run it this year in spite of the low level of training. It’s a multi-terrain run with a few hills included, starting and ending in Hartington, Derbyshire. This year, due to the frequent rain storms in recent weeks, the route was waterlogged in several places – with knee deep mud and water – and slippery in several others. The very steep Ecton hill was as hard as ever, as was the steadier but longer climb which follows soon afterwards. BUT, it was dry and warm for the run. The only other Harrier I am aware took part was Mick Moore who wisely chose to walk rather than run the 26mls. I finished, with calves caked in mud, in 4hrs 50mins (somewhat slower than previous years) and was 20th out of 93 runners who completed the course. Fastest runner was Gareth Briggs in 3:33 and first female runner was Adela Salt of Trentham AC in 4:09.

Pete Sarson


Indian Queens half marathon


I was competing in my annual Newquay race which I combine with a weeks holiday.The route was altered for the 3rd year running due to recent floods. A record 530 competed in the race with the vast majority of the runners from the cornwall and devon area. The race was part road and part track with some challenging hills to say the least. i met up with a guy from trentham running club who managed the run in 1 hr 23 mins. my time was 1 hr 45mins. My usual partner in crime, Rob Proctor, couldnt make this years annual run/holiday as his wife gave birth to a boy on the 8th August. Terrain: road for the first 3 miles then a long trek on a disused railway track (boring). final few miles on the road Weather conditions: nice and sunny

Roving reporter: Tim Hough


Rubery Rumble


This is a great cross country race on the Waseley Hills in north Worcestershire covering seven miles, pretty much all off-road. It’s quite tough and with some steep climbs and stiles to get over but there are good views on the tops. The race is well organised and the route well marked out with signs, tape, sawdust and plenty of marshals. It’s also friendly and had a pretty small field of around 70 runners. The weather was ok – cloudy but no rain and slightly muddy in places but easy to run on. I managed to come in third (after a painful sprint finish with the second-placed runner and not too far behind the winner) but wasn’t wearing a watch and can’t find any results. There are some reviews on the Runner’s World website and I definitely recommend it. Weather conditions: Cloudy but fairly dry. Report from: Tom Hobbins


Well Tom, the results are now published and you did finish 3rd out of 81 runners in a time of 45.05. The race was won by Sean Ledger of Oxford University CCC in 44.13


Trentham 10ml


This latest NSRRA league race attracts mainly league members with relatively few others. The steep hill that has to be ascended at 1.5mls and again at 6mls has a reputation as a killer, but the long downhill stretches in between offers good opportunity to bring the average pace back to normal. The race was won by Ben gamble of Stome MM in 54:11 (phew!), while the first lady home was 18yr old Sarah Johnson of Trentham in 65:43 – just 4secs ahead of the next lady! 256 FINISHED. Persistent showers throughout the race kept us all cool.

The usual Harrier stalwarts braved the double-hill:

Soon after the start:

Chasewater Challenge 10k


Race won by Ian Mansell of D&K in 35:22, with Adela Salt of Trentham first lady home in 39:29. A very wet morning ! 289 finished. Harriers were:

JCB 5ml


I saw around a dozen Harriers at this event on Thursday. On a really wet evening many runners and spectators still turned up for this annual fun night despite the awful conditions. The 3 mile fun run takes you once around the JCB factory with the 5 mile race taking in 2 laps. The rain was very heavy from start to finish makng it quite tricky on the steep downhill sections of the course. All finishers received a nice glass paperweight. My time was 36 minutes, and my son Sam (aged 9) did the 3 mile fun run in 24 minutes. The race was won by local runner Ben Gamble The course begins with a steep hill followed by a steady uphill road for a mile. Its then down hill until the course flattens out by the JCB lake. Then repeat that, followed by a fairly flat mile to finish.

Thanks to Tim Hough for this report.

Detailed results not yet available.

Harriers who ran included : Tim, Rob Proctor, Chris Owen, Chris Skellern, Bill Whitfield and Karen Sabin.




Wyre Forest Half


I can’t believe that more Harriers don’t do this race. its only an hour away and a beautiful but tough race. it lived up to its reputation of hills (about 2000ft of climb) mud but a good cafe at the end with a cup of coffee and cake. First home was Ian Mansell of Dudley and Kingswinford in 1.25.44 and first lady was Alix Critchley of Northbrook in 1.41.55. i was first harrier home (ok only harrier!) in 2.03.51 and was 3rd L45. Perhaps this would be an interesting one for the challenge next year and something a bit different. Its excellent training for race the train.

Thanks to Jane Bisiker for her report.

Cheadle 4mls


This popular sprint race – with a mountain in the middle – was won by Alex Derricott of Staffs. Moorlands in 20m28s – 43scs ahead of Ben Gamble. First lady home was a J Pereira from Medway & Maidstone in 24m07s – I didn’t realise it was THAT popular a race ! Fifteen Harriers accounted for 214 of the finishers.

026 – 25:36 – P Douglas

059 – 27:59 – M Bentley

072 – 28:29 – D Preece

079 – 28:46 – C Skellern

109 – 30:16 – E Lander

120 – 30:49 – J Leese

129 – 31:33 – G Williams

130 – 31:33 – E Smith

137 – 31:51 – R Wedlock

159 – 33:27 – M Jones

162 – 33:39 – D Cowley

172 – 34:34 – T Baker

183 – 36:20 – K Murray

198 – 41:08 – G Caldwell

199 – 41:14 – J Coleman


Berryhill Fields 10k


A very rainy day leading up to the race, cloudy but dry for the run (raining throughout last year’s run). The race was won by Darren Perry of Staffs. Moorlands in a time of 35m28s – one and a half minutes ahead of Mike Hatton of South Cheshire Harriers. First lady home was Jacqui Slack of Newcastle in 39m13s Only 10 Harriers ran this year: ..>> Tracey obviously enjoyed her run ..>>

Shifnal Steeplechase Half


Running conditions a little better than yesterday, though still pretty warm! Fortunately, the organisers had laid on water every 2mls. No hurdles or water jumps either, the “steeplechase” refers to chasing between church steeples in five local villages! 205 runners finished the race – won by Robin Sedman-Smith of Telford AC in 1:18:52

Harrier Results:

Birmingham Black Country Half


636 runners finished this canal bank run this year, a 50% increase on last year’s inaugural event. The weather was hot, hot, hot! Starting at the British Waterways Canal Dock, Wolverhampton and ending at Brindley Place, Birmingham A basically flat route following the towpath alongside the canals that connect the two Cities. Arguably, it is a downhill route with the only “lumps” being the locks and bridges that cross intersections. These “lumps” do get more frequent towards the latter stages of the run, making it perhaps a little tougher than it may seem. The 360yard long tunnel at Coseley is an “entertaining” feature enjoyed by some, hated by others but remembered by all. Completely off road and traffic free. You should be aware that the surface varies from well tended gravel paths and brick paving to un-kept surfaces – largely what you might encounter on any off road run . Mark feeling the heat of the day. . and Frank’s back in the game.

Harriers’ positions and times were :

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