Race Report January to March 2014


Report from Bill Whitworth.
This is only the second time the race has been run as a 10K, although its predecessor the Newcastle 7 took place for 40 years making it one of the longest running events nationally. On a modified course which was changed in order to make it safer for both competitors and marshals, this is a popular local road race. The 2014 race was a Staffordshire 10K Championship race and it also formed part of the North Staffs Road Runners League.
Starting outside Newcastle College, the race wound its way up the tough but rewarding Black Bank before descending into Silverdale. The route then followed the old railway line for a fast run into the finish.
Stafford Harriers fielded 32 runners in the event with Steve Vaughan taking 9th place overall in 36:33 behind Carl Moulton of Boalloy RC who won the race in his time of 33:33. Leading lady was Emily Ault of Barrow Runners in 38:26 and Michelle Rushton-Fox ran a personal best time of 43:14 to be first lady Harrier to finish.
Well done to Paul Bosson 1st V50, Chris Skellern 1st L50, Michelle Rushton Fox 2nd L35 and Mike Jones 3rd V70.

Harriers Times
9 Steve Vaughan 36:33
12 Russell Barron 36:58
13 Phil Hilsdon 37:17
21 Paul Bosson 38:15 1st V50
57 Alan Griffin 41:49
65 Adam Morris 42:32
73 Ian Hodkinson 42:39
79 Michelle Rushton Fox 43:14 2nd L35
91 Richard Caley 43:31
110 Darren Mattocks 44:39
122 Chris Skellern 45:13 1st L50
126 Jim Smith 45:18
131 Chris Elsley 45:28
140 Joe Atherton 45:51
179 Mark Bentley 47:34
218 Shelley Burns 50:08
223 Gill Hodkinson 50:33
232 Nigel Addison 50:57
236 Sandra Smith 51:20
258 Graham Williams 52:49
266 Tracey Ridings 53:21
273 Helen Morris 53:45 (pb)
281 Caryl Gibson 54:23 (pb)
285 Karen Murray 54:35
302 Marie Claire D’Arcy Barron 56:22
304 Charlotte Ward 56:16 (pb)
327 Gael Earp 58:17
340 Julie Nokes 59:29
350 Rachel Marsden 1:00:54
353 Michael Jones 1:01:25 3rd V70
357 Stuart Fowlie 1:01:44
391 Sara Broome 1:14:00

Stafford Half

16 March 2014


A fantastic turnout from the Harriers for our home town event. At the moment we appear to have 110 runners who completed the race well done to all.


After all that hard work someone left their finishers medal at the County Staff Club. Bill Whitworth has it so contact him to get it.


There was a great finish from the two front running Harriers with Matt Woodman just getting ahead of Chris Hollinshead in a tight finish, Matt just piping Chris on the line by 1 second.


This is the list of Harriers from the race organisers. We have found another ten of you who hadn’t registered as Harriers if there are any more, please drop us an email info@staffordharriers.co.uk and will add you to the table.


We have added the PB’s we know to the results, but if you have had a pb then please let us know.



2 Matt Woodman 1-15-13 pb
3 Chris Hollinshead 1-15-14 1st V45
19 Jon Weavell 1-21-28 2st V40
37 Phil Hilsdon 1-23-00
54 Paul Bosson 1-25-30
56 Ryan Noakes 1-25-51 pb
58 Kevin Darby 1-25-56 pb
77 Mark Bridgwood 1-27-11
101 Mike Saint-Dunn 1-29-11
102 Darren Pyatt 1-29-15
119 John Gomersall 1-30-01 pb
152 Adam Morris 1-31-41
159 Alan Griffin 1-31-55
183 Dave Payling 1-32-47
185 Mark White 1-32-50 pb
188 Ian Hodkinson 1-32-55
201 Paul Higginson 1-33-23
202 Michelle Ruston-Fox 1-33-26 pb
247 Simon Groom 1-35-06
291 Richard Caley 1-36-48
298 Laura Sandy 1-37-01
302 Andrew Locke 1-37-12
321 Mark Bentley 1-37-55
339 Alan Cook 1-38-30
341 Darren Mattocks 1-38-40
357 Tim Hough 1-39-08
373 Chris Skellern 1-39-45 2 nd F50
399 Ben Dellicompagni 1-40-40
405 John Peach 1-40-49
419 Mark Oliver 1-40-57 pb
439 Chris Elsley 1-41-31
483 Rob Proctor 1-42-31
514 Steve Babb 1-43-06
541 Tim Hough 1-43-48
576 Eddie Smith 1-44-51
648 Charlotte Vernon 1-46-40 pb
674 Emma Hollinshead 1-47-01
690 Mark Withington 1-47-21
756 Emma Waldron 1-49-00
762 William Gray 1-49-09
775 John Richardson 1-49-30
837 Shelley Burns 1-51-10
845 Gill Hodkinson 1-51-22 pb
865 Lucy Stone 1-51-47
885 Dave Cook 1-52-17
914 Bernard Wilkes 1-54-31
947 Esther Batho 1-53-36
967 Alan Aukim 1-54-04
976 Rebecca Martin 1-54-10
1020 Angela Brookes 1-55-25
1036 Anne Coghlan 1-55-45 pb
1039 Gemma Stokoe 1-58-03
1055 Rachel Proctor-Davies 1-56-06 pb
1067 Sally Dean 1-56-23 pb
1081 Virginia Brown 1-56-46
1082 Edwina Gould 1-56-47 pb
1085 Keely Gilhooly 1-56-48 pb
1087 Helen Hartman 1-56-53
1147 Karen Murray 1-58-16
1159 Graham Williams 1-58-30
1186 Joe Atherton 1-58-59
1187 Cayrl Gibson 1-58-59
1280 Jeff Martin 2-01-30
1290 Claire Bradshaw 2-01-50
1296 Wendy Sears 2-02-01 pb
1298 Emma Whithington 2-02-09 pb
1308 Helen Morris 2-02-44
1318 Richard Davies 2-02-59
1324 Katrina Jones 2-03-04
1392 Karen D Murray 2-04-40
1398 Becki Hollins 2-04-52 pb
1407 Jo Oliver 2-04-55
1408 Julie Mogey 2-04-56 pb
1451 Shaun Holt 2-06-23
1455 Mike Jones 2-06-30 3 rd V70
1469 Lynn Geoghegan 2-06-54
1476 Georgina Coggins 2-07-56
1492 Helen Underwood 2-07-37 pb
1523 Lee Edgington 2-08-27
1594 Fay Martin 2-10-06
1617 Liz Stanyer 2-10-49
1618 Simon Stanyer 2-10-50 pb
1650 Charlotte Ward 2-12-00 pb
1656 Marie-Claire D’Arcy-Barron 2-12-27
1657 Rhiannon Jones 2-12-29
1660 Anne Mellor 2-12-34
1689 Sarah Johnson 2-14-04
1718 Julie Gomersall 2-14-43
1723 Jazz Mahil 2-15-16 pb
1724 Carly Smith 2-15-26 pb
1726 Rachel Marsden 2-15-20 pb
1750 Michael Bamber 2-16-00
1757 Amy Wilshaw 2-16-02
1760 Julie Noakes 2-16-05
1779 Bill Whitworth 2-17-36
1845 Julie Birtles 2-20-18 pb
1846 Carly Bryan 2-20-21 pb
1855 David Kumar 2-20-57 pb
1859 Jon Loft 2-21-06
1874 Tracey Burrows 2-22-16 pb
1882 Lindsay Ashforth 2-22-49
1916 Maria Davies 2-24-30
1917 Hannah Lloyd 2-24-30
1918 Tina Darby 2-24-30
1936 Graham Orme 2-25-55
1979 Elizabeth Pearson 2-30-18
2024 Val Stuart 2-35-05 3 rd L65
2032 Andrew Carter 2-36-39
2037 Julie Petrek 2-37-05
2064 Frank Evans 2-40-41



There were 2111 finishers

1st, 2nd and 3rd Early in the race

I hope she is not stealing it 100 yards from the Police Station.


Sunday was the warmest, sunniest day of the year so far and definitely heralded the start of Spring as runners descended on Stafford for the Stafford 20 mile race, a great event which has taken place since 1978 and is Staffordshire’s second oldest road race.
Starting and finishing at the University Campus in Stafford it is a multi lap race with an 8mile lap, followed by two 6mile laps. Those who don’t wish to do the full 20 miles can enter as a team of three in a 3 stage relay.
Overall winner, Tom Charles of Trafford AC completed the course in 1:49:28 to take the men’s title while Michelle Buckle of Newcastle(Staffs)AC won the ladies’ event in 2:22:48. A total of 27 Harriers participated and leading man was Steve Vaughan – 2:12:52, while Tracey Jones led the ladies home in 2:41:00.
Harriers Times were
24 Steve Vaughan 2.12.52
32 Jon Weavell 2:15:59
37 Paul Bosson 2:16:48
56 Mike Saint-Dunn 2:21:22
114 Ian Hodkinson 2:32:19
116 John Gomersall 2:32:45
120 Mark White 2:33:28
152 Mark Bentley 2:39:50
158 Tracey Jones 2:41:00
192 Darren Mattocks 2:48:17
196 Chris Elsley 2:49:18
200 Richard Caley 2:49:46
237 Eddie Smith 2:54:32
244 Ben Dellicompagni 2:57:51
257 Mark Oliver 2:57:43
270 Charlotte Vernon 3:01:40
302 Rebecca Martin 3:08:35
303 Richard Stokoe 3:08:35
308 Wayne Vaughan 3:09:47
313 Shelley Burns 3:11:19
323 Anne Coghlan 3:15:38
328 Joanne Oliver 3:16:50
351 Karen D Murray 3:29:53
381 Ian Gould 3:34:26
382 Charlotte Ward 3:34:26
386 Angela Brookes 3:36:29


Meanwhile, a small contingent of Harriers had enjoyed the warmth of Cyprus preparing for the Paphos Marathon and Half Marathon. On Sunday, race day, after several days of sweltering weather the runners were pleased to see cloud cover first thing. Fortunately, the Marathon started at 7.30am and the Half Marathon an hour later at 8.30am. The clouds lasted until lunchtime and once the running was finished the sun came out again, just in time for the runners to return to the hotel pool and to seek well earned refreshment. They couldn’t have arranged it better.


In the Marathon Chris Ross finished in 24th place in 3:32:22 (4th V45) and wife Jill was 62nd in 4:07:18 winning the 3rd L45 trophy.


In the half marathon John Finney was 64th in 1:50:32 (4th V 65), Graham Williams was 96th in 1:58:10 (5th V65) Brian Langston was 97th in 1:58:39 (4th V70)

This lot seem to have had to much fun in Cyprus

Can you spot Jill’s Trophy?

Reports from Chris Owen.


Belvoir Challenge



this is a off road event opened to runners/walkers with a choice of distances of either 16 or 26m. of course i did the 26m.each year they change the course,which takes in footpaths,bridle ways with a bit of road thrown in. there was no major hills ,just one long incline of a good mile .the conditions under foot was awful,leicestershire clay.the checkpoints like usual at these events mainly catered for the walkers, with cakes and sandwiches at last checkpoint there was evenstilton and crackers .for some reason i just couldn’t get into it and really strugledjust finished under 4.5hrs

Millennium Way Ultra

2/3/14this was my first delve into ultra ,a 38m event from outwoods(newport) to burton upon trent along the way for the millennium a long distance footpath.i was slightly concerned about pacing and also running on tired legs.i neadn’t have worried have ,i just ran at a comfortable pace ,i also was really in the zone,the miles were being ticked off at regular intervals.i was chief navigator with my little posse when we left the disused railway to get onto the canal.the 9m cross country bit was quite easy as the organisers had checked footpath signs and replaced if necessary. the last 5m canal section was awful and had to be distracted by music,the end finally came ,except i turned wrong after leaving canal.finished in a very respectable time 7hrs 11min 25th overall(would have been in top 20 if it wasn’t for the wrong turning)wayne vaughan 9hrs 48min

Valentines Marathon

15/2/14a low key event in stratford upon avon centered around a disused railway.conditions were awful due to wind3hrs 57minchris owen



The March Hair Raiser, a Six mile and a half-ish off road race on Sunday from Kingswood Park Business Centre, Kingswood, nr. Albrighton, a group of Harriers enjoyed the spring-like weather as they followed the course along the A464 Wolverhampton to Shifnal road.

The overall winner in a time of 35:34, was Tom Cornthwaite of Salford H&AC with leading lady in 6th place Danielle Hodgkinson from Wallsend Harriers completing the course in 38:56. In 9th place was Harrier Nathan Sabin, his time being 40:38.


Harriers times

9 Nathan Sabin 40:38

113 Brian Langston 59:06

139 John Hateley 1:06:00

150 Amada Pearce 1:10:30





A scenic and challenging off-road race over a well marked and marshalled course from Congleton to Bosley Cloud (1125’) and back, via the ancient Bridestones (c 2000 BC) for the Cloud 9 race proved attractive for a larger contingent of Harriers especially with the promise of free soup and roll, a shoe wash and post race massage for all finishers.

The winner of this challenging race was Damian Nichols of Wilmslow RC (55:58) and the female winner was Emma Gould of Mercia Fell Runners 1:06:37. Adam Morris led the Harriers home in 108th place in 1:16:05, with leading female Harrier Michelle Fox taking 132nd place in 1:18:00.


Harriers times

108 Adam Morris 1:16:37

122 Darren Mattocks 1:17:01

132 Michelle Rushton Fox 1:18:00

213 Chris Skellern 1:23:27

225 Eddie Smith 1:24:45

299 Shelley Burns 1:31:45

330 Graham Williams 1:35:41

340 Jane Bisiker 1:36:21

367 Caryl Gibson 1:41:18

368 Joe Atherton 1:41:20

421 Michael Jones 1:57:50

424 Stuart Fowlie 1:58:37

431 Sara Broome 2:15:12





Meanwhile down in Silverstone in light rainy conditions, Rachel Davis Procter stepped up her preparation for the London Marathon by competing in a field of 6778 runners in the Silverstone Half Marathon and did a personal best time to cross the line in 2441st place in a time of 1:54:48. The event was won by Chris Thompson (GBR) in 1:05:08 with leading lady runner Imogen Keane (GBR) 1:24:12.






The Annual Presentation evening on Friday 28th February was enjoyed by over 70 Harriers with a number of prizes being awarded to runners who had represented the club at numerous events over the last 12 months. Although the evening was dominated by the Adult runners, the Juniors also had received their awards prior to the event.



Junior Male Runner of the Year George Hodkinson

Junior Female Runner of the Year Amy Oliver

Most Improved Junior Runner Will Sammons


Individual Awards voted for online by the members were,

Male Runner of the Year Alan Griffin

Lady Runner of the Year Shelley Burns

Veteran Runner of the Year Val Stuart


Voted for by the committee were,

Most Improved Runner Gill Hodkinson

Male Newcomer of the Year Phil Hilsdon

Female Newcomer of the Year Julie Nokes

Team Managers’ Award Mark Bridgwood

Champagne Moment Chris Owen

Clubman of the Year Bill Whitworth


In the 2013 Harriers’ Challenge, there were 7 groups where runners competed at a range of distances and nominated races throughout the season, amassing points which determined their places within each group. Trophy winners were as follows

Winner 2nd Place 3rd Place

Group 1 Mark Bridgwood Nathan Sabin Phil Hilsdon

Group 2 Ian Hodkinson Alan Cook Chris Skellern

Group 3 Allan Griffin Adam Morris Michelle Fox and Tracey Jones

Group 4 Jim Smith Mark Oliver Angela Brookes

Group 5 Shelley Burns Gill Hodkinson Jane Bisiker

Group 6 Joanne Oliver Mike Moore Julie Nokes

Group 7 Chelsie Cook Stuart Fowlie Sara Broome



The latest race in the Harriers Challenge took place on Sunday with Ian, Chris and Angela running after their exploits at the Nationals in Nottingham the day before and Nige and Mike after their tough day spectating.


The event was won by Martin Williams of Tipton Harriers in 26:33 with Melanie James was first lady to cross the finish line in 31:54. Leading Harriers were Alan Griffin 32:02 in 32nd place and, in 80th position, Christine Skellern 37:03.

Harrier’s times were


32nd Alan Griffin 32:02

47th Adam Morris 34:28

49th Ian Hodkinson 34:40

53rd Dave Payling 34:47

80th Chris Skellern 37:03

81st Chris Elsley 37:07

150th Angela Brookes 40:57

156th Gill Hodkinson 41:06 (pb)

157th Sandra Smith 41:10 (pb)

165th Nigel Addison 41:43

208th Joe Atherton 44:05

209th Caryl Gibson 44:06

213th Marie-Claire D’arcy-Barron 44:17

348th Michael Jones 51:12

353rd Rachel Marsden 51:25 (pb)

355th John Hateley 51:31

399th Sara Broome 55:40




Liz Stanyer reports,

Hi, being as Mark clearly beat me in getting his photos onto the website first, (which would make me look like a poor 2nd in the photography competition) I have decided to write a report instead. It has to be said that my photos were affected by my constant jumping up and down whenever a Harrier (or Jonathan Brownlee) ran past.

At 9am 28 harriers boarded the coach for Woolaton Park, Nottingham for the National Cross Country event. A beautiful sunny morning, which Chris Ross made the most of by lying sunbathing as soon as we pitched up. We compared tents and soon dismissed many of the other huge sophisticated club tents as ‘a bit of a faff’ to put up.

The atmosphere is fantastic and it’s quite a sight to see the massive amount of clubs that enter this event.

The races are not in age order so a programme was needed to help everyone get their race bearings.

The course looked great, double taped with lots of weaving about, a couple of bumpy hills, a fair bit of mud, a wet, muddy, shoe removing swamp and a long up hill drag which is where Mark and I pitched ourselves for the best view of the runners. However, those who ran it may give a different description of the course!

The start to all the races is so impressive, but to see 1000+ runners in the men’s race spread width ways across the start, all charging toward you uphill is a real WOW moment. There were some ‘idiots’ as Pete put it that attempted to cross the course just as the ladies race was about to start. Very very foolish, certainly risking their own lives, potentially causing chaos to the lady runners and really quite mad considering the almighty charge that takes place. Tut Tut whoever they were!

(Yes I admit shouting but I don’t think they were our idiot’s. Were they?PB)

All the juniors that took part gave their all and certainly didn’t look out of depth in such a strong national competition. Hopefully there will be a junior race report from one of them, but they all seemed to think it a great day to be part of, and as always did us proud.

The senior ladies and men’s races were brilliant to watch, the quality of the front runners was an awesome sight. Mark was his most vocal when Gemma Steele ran past. He is her number one fan (stalker?). She didn’t seem to recognise you though Mark.

I managed to take a few photos of Jonathan Brownlee who Ian kindly told me was young enough to be my son. Cheers Ian.

The Harrier ladies team ran so well together as they have all season resulting in a 42nd out of 83 team position. Brilliant.

The men’s team, again all ran well and all appeared to be enjoying themselves. 93rd team out of 127.

I think Ian T was helped by a slug of Marks cider (that he had stashed in his pockets) pre run and also managed to down his highly recommended recovery drink post race pretty quickly.

A stop off for tea at a pub, which served great food and of course well deserved drinks, then back home.

This day is such a great day out for both runners and spectators and I would encourage anyone who has never been to any running events to come to this one. Run in the race, or cheer the team on. Either way, this is what being a Harrier is about. Racing for your club, supporting your team, pub, team work, running, pub, cheering (or screeching as I tend to do), pub, laughter, a day out watching a massive range of running abilities, pub, elite athletes, pub, Gemma Steele (for Mark), Jonathan Brownlee (oh was he there?) and of course ending with the pub.

It feels brilliant being part of such a great team of people and I know everyone who went had a great day out too.


(Sorry Liz you sent far too many blurred photo’s of Jonathon for me to put on this page. PB)


Tracey Jones reports,


Teams from the senior men, ladies and some juniors travelled to Nottingham to compete against the best in the country at the National Cross Country Championships.

Our very own Pete Burns was Site Manager for the event and kindly ordered a good weather day, for running and spectating and sun bathing (as long as you had a few layers on).


Despite the very wet weather of late the course was surprisingly dry, although it did have a few muddy, boggy, swampy patches just to remind you it was cross country. Being set in very pleasant surroundings made it an inviting course to run on, it had a few hills, twists and turns and a log to hurdle just to keep you on your toes.


Once again the junior athletes acquitted themselves very well and did the club proud.


As is now customary, the Harriers supporters were well dotted around the course, with team Addison on one hill, the cheerleader ladies (Sandra, Gill, Jo, Julie) nicely placed to encourage you through the sticky mud section and a pair of lunatics with cameras (Liz and Mark) running frantically from one side of the big hill to the other, shouting and bawling at you to get up the hill and then screeching for you to sprint down the other side! Quite frankly if Liz had just stood in the middle of the hill we would have heard her anyway and both she and Mark could have saved all the wine and cider (sorry energy drinks) they spilt running around!

Also thanks to Mick Jones, Jill Ross (and anyone else whom I have forgotten) who took a slightly more mellow approach to their supporting duties.


Both senior teams seemed to revel in the occasion, Ian Talbot in particular having a pre race booster (the camera does not lie) and all ran well. The ladies team managed a very credible 42nd out of 83 teams, the men finished 93rd out of 127 teams and both were placed higher than a number of other local clubs.

In all it was a great day out at an excellent event which enables runners of all abilities to test themselves against international and Olympic athletes.


The team bus for the day created a good atmosphere and the day was nicely rounded off with a de-brief on the way home at the pub.



Under 13 Boys
184 George Hodkinson 12:58
354 Will Buckley 15:05
385 runners finished


Under 15 Girls
167 Hannah Talbot 18:24
355 runners finished


Under 15 Boys
342 Kieran Mogey 23:44
346 runners finished


Senior Women
288 Michelle Rushton-Fox 36:37
295 Tracey Jones 36:42
338 Chris Skellern 37:49
385 Julie Addison 38:47
530 Angela Brookes 42:50
708 runners finished Stafford Harriers came 42nd out of 83 complete teams


Senior Men
514 Steve Vaughan 45:21
604 Ian Talbot 46:24
1130 Chris Ross 52:41
1176 Ian Hodkinson 53:24
1280 Darren Mattocks 55:21
1339 Mark Oliver 56:22
1379 Richard Caley 57:05
1390 Mark Bentley 57:24
1539 Eddie Smith 1:01:38
1578 Roy Clay 1:03:55
1657 runners finished Stafford Harriers came 93rd out of 127 complete teams


Pete Burns reports,


I was fortunate to have been involved as Site Manager and official for the event and have received this press release email from the Secretary of ECCA about the record entries of day.




Records a plenty were created at Wollaton Park, Nottingham when the Saucony English National Cross Country Championships were staged there. On a sunny but windy day over 10,000 athletes and spectators attended the Championships creating a fantastic atmosphere and the local organisers Notts AC and Nottingham City Council put on a great event. As well as the overall big numbers there were a number of record fields of finishers from the 10 races in the programme.


It is now 20 years since the Men and Women combined to stage a joint Championships and a total 4686 finishers were recorded across the 10 events for a new record total. There were a number of individual race records with the under 17 Women getting things going in race 1 where 211 athletes finished. There were further records in the Junior Women’s race where 134 finished and the Senior women’s Championship where 708 came home and increase of 58 on the previous record.


However for the long term future of the Championships the numbers running the 2 under 13 categories was particularly pleasing as 431 finished in the Girls race and 385 in the Boys again both record size fields. There were large numbers in the under 15 events also but not records this time with 355 and 346
who finished wearing timing chips, though not a record, compared well with 1790 finishers at Luton in 1995 or the 1948 finishers at Newark in 1996 when all restrictions on entries were lifted, but a great number indeed. Also 127 Clubs finished a Team at Nottingham the best number since 1999 at Newark when
133 closed in.


So a fantastic day with the great history of the National maintained.


Ian Byett

ECCA Hon Sec

Pictures from Mark Bridgwood


and here is a video of the ladies race, the link will also take you to other videos of the races.



2-2-14 1st NSSRA EVENT.
Report from Mike Jones
Twenty one Harriers ran this fast 5 miler, with many runners using this race as the start of the running year, also it is the first race in the NSRRA, with the best 12 races out of 20, to win a trophy at the end of the year.
The Harriers did very well, with six Harriers finished in the top three, they were Steve Vaughan 1st group B, Paul Bosson 3rd group B, Graham Williams 3rd group F, Tracy Ridings 2nd group X, Karen D Murray 3rd group W, Mike Jones 3rd group G, also in the age groups Paul Bosson 2nd M50, Chris Skellern 1st L50, Graham Williams 3rd M65, Mike Jones 2nd M70 did very well.


It is not too late to enter this year, there are still 19 races to run, at a cost of £10 good value, and it will focus the mind on the year ahead.


40th James Skelton 27-25

79th Steve Vaughan 29-16 1st Group B

107th Paul Bosson 30-12 3rd Group B 2nd M50

154th Darren Pyatt 31-32

273rd Chris Skellern 35-15 6th Group L 1st L50

296th Darren Mattocks 35-31

418th Wayne Vaughan 38-28

483rd Graham Williams 39-56 3rd Group F 3rd M65

567th Tracy Ridings 41-49 2nd Group X

590th Karen D Murray 42-32 3rd Group W

609th Karen Murray 43-01 5th Group W

649th Simon Stanyer 43-55

694th Mike Jones 45-34 3rd Group G 2nd M70

762nd Gael Earp 47-16

788th John Hateley 47-34

842nd Katy Sigley 52-02

884th Deborah Garcia 56-45

888th Sarah Gray 57-26



911 Finished.


Back in December I thought, owwee, big birthday coming up, I’m going to find a run on somewhere…and … run away!

I looked up races for Sunday 26th January and found … the Marrakesh Marathon!

Over the coming weeks the idea seemed improbable; too many things to arrange, re-arrange, family, animals, school… but 10 days into January school gave the go ahead for this ‘educational trip’, so a week before the race, the flight, trip and marathon entry got sorted…. and the run up to the Marathon included: rain on landing, snake charmers, a trip to the Morrocan Circus, Camel Rides, a day in the Atlas Mountains, a traditional feast, the Kings’ Motorcade, horses and carriages, a few COLD swims in the pool, meeting local folks and 2:09 events co-runners…. and much more….

And a marathon … starting at 8 am. Cold to blazing heat during the course of the morning….and with (not advisable) little training, it was never going to be easy …. but it was different!

The Ethiopians and Kenyans stole the show …both in the Half (semi) and Full Marathon… with a winning time in the marathon of 2.08 by Robi Derib Melka from Ethiopia; and winning lady, Tolwak Meseret Kitata in 2.31.

I was very grateful of my six jelly babies en route and made it home in 4 hours 12 mins, which on my training, I was more than happy with.

Now, home again, with my birthday medal and some quite amazing memories!
Karen Davies

Stafford Harriers Press Report 26th January 2014


by Bill Whitworth
On Saturday 25th January, a hardy contingent of Stafford Harriers made their way to Leamington Spa to participate in the Midland Counties Cross Country Championships on a course which the recent rains had ensured there were plentiful muddy tracks, slithering slopes and deep ditches! Add to that the thunderstorm which rolled in just 1 minute into the main race and this was not a day for the faint-hearted. The blustery conditions even saw the Harriers’ tent uprooted, being rescued by Coach Driver George Singh in his best Driving gear and shoes, and later the coach deputising as changing rooms. However, all who ran expressed their appreciation for the event and all enjoyed the challenge!
The senior men’s event was won by Jonathan Thewlis of Notts AC in a time of 0:39:18 and Jane Potter of Charnwood AC won the ladies event in 0:31:50. Mark Bridgwood 0:48:13 was 116th man and Tracey Jones 0:41:14 was 110th lady and they were the leading Harriers on the day.


Results were:


U 13 Boys


71 George Hodkinson 0:14:12
102 William Buckley 0:16:04


U 13 Girls


134 Jamie-Leigh Taylor 0:17:42


U 15 Boys


77 William Sammons 0:17:34
86 Jack Hodkinson 0:18:08
109 Kieran Mogey 0:24:54


U 15 Girls


29 Hannah Talbot 0:18:15


U 17 Boys


69 Joseph Smith 0:30:58


Senior Women


110 Tracey Jones 0:41:14
112 Michelle Rushton-Fox 0:41:17
123 Jenny Addison 0:42:48
125 Christine Skellern 0:42:54


Senior Men


116 Mark Bridgwood 0:48:13
122 Steve Vaughan 0:48:38
149 Ian Talbot 0:49:53
261 Alan Griffin 0:55:02
271 Ian Hodkinson 0:56:37
298 James Smith 0:58:44
326 Mark Oliver 1:01:59
344 Roy Clay 1:04:24
352 Eddie Smith 1:06:29


Midlands Cross Country Championships, Leamington Spa

Saturday 25th January 2014

Report by Tracey Jones

Four ladies, nine men and eight Junior athletes travelled to Leamington Spa to compete in the Midlands Cross Country Championships.
The rain of Friday gave way to dry but somewhat windy conditions on the Saturday which was proven when the club tent did a lap of the field freestyle!
That said muddy did not begin to describe the conditions underfoot, the small ditch (well it was once) which is usually accommodated with a quick leap and a splash was all together another challenge. Fortunately the Harriers had the benefit of Jim Smith’s many theories on how to tackle the ditch!

The Juniors; George Hodkinson, William Buckley, Jamie-Leigh Taylor, Will Sammons, Jack Hodkinson, Kieran Mogey, Hannah Talbot and Joe Smith all acquitted themselves very well and coped brilliantly in the conditions. This was particularly noticeable when so many runners around them had either dropped out or finished in tears.

On observing how hardy the Harriers are the weather decided to test the senior runners a little further and during the latter part of the ladies race and for most of the men’s race there was a concoction of thunder, lightning, hail and rain thrown at us. Thankfully everyone came through unscathed, possibly with the exception of Chris Skellern who was savaged by another clubs flying tent!

A huge thank you to Sandra, Gill, Jo, Ingrid, Nigel and other hardy Harriers supporters as they braved all the elements to give fantastic encouragement to the runners.
The ladies were very well positioned to see our efforts in tackling the mud slide, previously known as the bank of the ditch. Reports to date are that none of Jim’s strategies were very successful!

Thanks also to George Singh who was our coach driver for the day and did us proud allowing us to use the coach as the substitute kit store when it became apparent that the tent was not up to the job.
The team bus had a great atmosphere as everyone swapped stories and whatever the athletes say they enjoyed themselves really!




110 Tracey Jones 41.14
112 Michelle Rushton-Fox 41.17
123 Julie Addison 42.48
125 Chris Skellern 42.54


223 runners finished Stafford Harriers came 20 out of 27 complete teams


116 Mark Bridgwood 48.13
122 Steve Vaughan 48.38
149 Ian Talbot 49.53
261 Alan Griffin 55.02
271 Ian Hodkinson 56.37
298 Jim Smith 58.44
326 Mark Oliver 61.59
344 Roy Clay 64.24
352 Eddie Smith 66.29


366 runners finished Stafford Harriers came 23 out of 34 complete teams



Not the Roman 9, Stratford


By Caryl Gibson

Following last year’s cancellation due to 6 inches of snow today’s race could not have been more different – beautiful sunshine more reminiscenrt of Spring than Winter!

We decided to make a weekend of it and stay at a nearby caravan site. We did some race prep the night before at Connelly’s tapas bar in Tiddington – ie copious amounts of wine and San Mig … oh, and tapas. We felt ‘raring and ready to race’ the next morning.

First of all we had a 1 km walk/jog to the start. There was a slight chill in the air but we soon warmed up in the 600 strong huddle at the start of the race. It was a slow start in a narrow lane but at least it was chip timing.The course itself was undulating, mainly along country lanes although we did have to run 2 kms along a busier road, however, the car drivers were courteous keeping a good distance away from the runners. There was one testing climb just before half way which we could see looming in the distance but it wasn’t as bad as it looked and had a water station just before it! This long steep climb was compensated for by some really long downhill stretches.

The course was well marshalled – there was even a cute canine marshall in a high vis jacket which made us smile! There were two water stations and 1 km distance markers. We ran through the lovely village of Loxley despite the fact that it seemed to be missing a pub! The run into the finish had markers at 800, 400, 200 metres which helped keep the momentum going. You couldn’t see the actual finish until you turned into the final 100m at which point we sprinted past 3 other runners.

Race T-shirts were good quality with a nice logo but my small t-shirt was too big and Joe’s big t-shirt was too small.

I was pleased to finish in 1:05:51 which is my fastest time for a 12k run and was also pleased that the average pace was under 9 minutes. I’d like to thank Joe for telling me at the top of the hill when I was knackered that there was still half of the race left and for accompanying me round the course.

If you fancy an undulating course with lovely scenery then I would recommend this as part of a weekend away in the picturesque Stratford upon Avon. I would especially recommend Connolly’s Deli-Tapas bar in Tiddington.

Caryl Gibson 1:05:51 (PB)
Joe Atherton 1:05:52



Stafford Harriers Press Report

Sunday 12th January 2014


On a cold, frosty Sunday morning a Stafford Harriers contingent of 21 runners headed to Milford to compete in the annual Trig Race over Cannock Chase, which is the first race in the Harriers Challenge . This event requires runners to be confident map readers to compete, as it requires them to visit six trigs in order over a course of approximately 16 miles, navigating between each and there are no race marshals which means occasionally runners can go astray! The event was won by defending champion Rob Little of Dark Peak in 104:22 with the first lady being Isaline Kneale of Burnden RR in 137:14.
Leading Stafford Harriers were Ian Talbot 126:15 and Tracey Jones 140:39






Winner was Robert Little of Dark Peak RC in 1:44:22,
Ladies winner was Emma Gould of Mercia Fell Runners in 2:03:00.
160 finished.


Full Results Harriers (22 Harriers in total)


22nd Ian Talbot 2:06:15
25th Dave Payling 2:13:23
26th Chris Ross 2:14:34
62nd Tracey Jones 2:20:39 2nd L40
66th Chris Skellern 2:22:02 1st L50
68th Chris Owen 2:22:09
72nd Ian Hodgkinson 2:24:11
79th Mark White 2:26:10
83rd John Peach 2:26:55
94th Mark Bentley 2:30:37
96th Eddie Smith 2:30:50
98th Darren Mattocks 2:32:13
100th Richard Caley 2:33:23
117th Liz Stanyer 2:42:32 3rd L40
126th Jane Bisiker 2:44:22 3rd L50
138th Graham Williams 2:50:55
143rd Mark Oliver 2:57:43
144th Esther Batho 2:57:51
149th Dave Mantle 3:01:21
153rd Sally Burns 3:06:45
156th Rebecca Bostock 3:08:48


A few photos taken at the start.


Well done to all who helped make this a very successful event. Although the conditions were as muddy as we have seen in places, the event went smoothly. The referee and officials passed on their thanks to all who helped out on the day. We have also had feedback from runners and clubs saying how much they enjoyed the day.

Some Harriers did comment that we could perhaps have had more runners out on the day but well done to all of them that did run. There were some great performances. Well done to the Harrier Vets Men’s team who won the Bronze Medals.

Here are a couple of photos that show Harriers can walk on water.

Errr perhaps not Adam.






On what was an awful day for running no fewer than 112 runners ran this race. No wonder Vernon called it his Stupid Hero’s race. Well done not only the stupid runners but all the stupid helpers as well.

It was great to know that on the day over £500 was raised in Vernon Olivant’s name.


Ian Wilson, son of a very proud Rose and who will soon be joining her club, completed the course in 31:22. Which is the exact time Rose had entered for him.


I know you should always do what your mum says but that was remarkable!!


Check the pdf below for the results, just ignore the 2009 date it was 2014


For those of you who want to know where you would have come if it was a normal race then check this pdf.