Wednesday, 15 May 2019

Road Race 4 – Wigan Trail 10k Report

Road Race 4 – Wigan Trail 10k Report
So, sunny Sunday 12th May saw the fourth race of the road calendar already.  The road season is in full swing now with good attendance at races, a great atmosphere at each event and some really strong running performances by members.
The Wigan Trail 10k is a race which, has been included for the last 3 years and is always a good turnout and usually attracts good weather.  Whilst the course is not hilly, it feels like a toughie due to the surface, the twists and turns and the amount of times you seem to go back to the middle of the course before being allowed to turn off for the last time.  This was made worse by the introduction of a grass section just before the finish.  Registration was hectic and we had a few last minute name changes due to some members not being able to run.  We do hope that you are back running with us soon.  As usual, we failed to get a full team photograph before the race started although the photographs taken with Joan’s black and blue camera were really good.  Maybe we can aim to get a full team picture for the website next time.
27 A&T’ers completed the course and enjoyed the pie on the grass afterwards.  We were also treated to an array of sweet treats by Joan and Kay.  Phil managed to get yet another PB.  Catherine and Paul completed the race after running to it as 10k clearly is not enough for them!  The event organisers acknowledge those running clubs who support the race well by entering 12 or more athletes by giving a medal and a cash prize to the quickest male and female from the respective clubs therefore, Jackie and Mark got these added bonuses.  Jackie also got an extra prize for claiming the F40 category.  The podium places for our club were as follows:

1.       Mark Collins 38.58
2.       Brendan Loughrey 41.24
3.       Phillip Griffiths 42.28

1.       Jackie Price 44.02
2.       Amanda Partington 49.03
3.       Nicola Scott 50.38

Well done to everyone that took part and thank you to those that came along to support.  It was a great weekend overall for A&T with the parkrun take over on Saturday and some of our ultra-gang running a very long way on a difficult course on Sunday.  See you all next time.

Tuesday, 30 April 2019

Road Fixture 3 Blackpool Half Race Report
Sunday was an important day for running, not just due to the London Marathon (very well done to those members who completed that one though) but also because it was the third road fixture of the year.  New for the season was one of the Blackpool Festival of Running Events – the half marathon.  The weather at the weekend had been simply awful.  Saturday was windy as and was a washout, in total contrast to the weekend before.  Given that Blackpool is usually blowing a gale on the front at all times anyway, I was slightly concerned that this new event may just go down like a prosecco drought at the Christmas do but I was also optimistic that the worst of the weather should be out of the way and knew that everyone who had signed up would turn up anyway.  Fortunately, the wind seemed to have dropped quite a bit and it wasn’t pouring down on Sunday morning when we travelled over, much to everyone’s relief.  We picked our numbers up from the registration area where it still was a bit breezy and there were several complaints of people being cold so we all went to shelter in a hotel reception for as long as possible. Just before 9.30, we finalised our clothing arrangements and got in line – the marathon starters (including club member James Love) facing the tower and those of us in the half facing north.  
So the route started the north end of Blackpool and started near the sea wall.  16 A&T-ers ran further north briefly before turning up to turn right to run on the closed road and then took our journey south with the odd tram passing by for company.  Past all 3 piers, the tower and the pleasure beach and conditions felt just great.  At around 4 ½ miles we turned around through some houses and then started to head south and this is where the wind kicked in and certainly my times started to slow down for a few miles.  The route to Bispham is actually up an incline also which, isn’t exactly Everest but combined with the wind it did make this stretch much more challenging that the initial outwards section.  We had this to contend with until we dropped down to the sea wall and took a left to run back to where we started.  This bit was fortunately sheltered which, was helpful for the last 3 miles or so.  Out on the route, marathon and half participants blended in together and there were quite a few observations from others about the presence of blue vests and enquiries into where Malc was from his marathon buddies and recognisable faces from his Gin Pit events.  
Once back where we started, an excited Phil greeted me to share the good news that he had got yet another PB (he had also beaten Brendan – Paul Basnett is now old news).  Further PBs rolled in also from Joanne and Dave who have both recovered brilliantly from Manchester marathon and are now knocking out great performances.  Lynn and Andrea also managed to impressively shave some time off their previous best half marathon times.  
The podium places from the event were as follows:
1.MARK COLLINS 01:27:54
3.SHAUN MORAN 01:32:39
1.STACEY MAMOUN 01:45:25
2.NICOLA SCOTT 01:50:12
3.JOANNE GIBSON 01:53:51

Everyone was awarded with a Freddo, a really nice medal and T-shirt combo with a tower/wheel design.  Most of us then went back to the hotel where we sheltered earlier for a coffee and a chat.  Overall, the race was well organised, a good size and atmosphere however, Blackpool could do with some better brunch facilities.
Thank you and well done to those that turned up and hope you all had a good day beside the seaside (I think you did).  

Tuesday, 26 March 2019

Manchester Marathon 2019 Sunday 7th April – by Mark Riches

My earlier post refers HERE
I attended the marshals briefing last week and have received confirmation that we are in our usual place - drink station 11 Kingsway bus stop opposite Stretford Mall M32 9BD

I have jackets, ID & marshal handbooks for you all but food & drink will NOT be provided so bring your own; the organisers make a larger donation I lieu of packed lunch!

I will be there from 07:00, if anyone fancies keeping me company please let me know (m) 07508 213207

Elite men are due at our water station at 11:04, our busy time is likely to be 11:45 – 13:15 and we should be done by 16:00

You can do anything from a couple of hours to the whole day – just come along and have fun!

Road Race 2 – Race Report

Road Race 2 – Race Report
Sunday 24th May, was the Gin Pit Half Marathon which, was the second event of the road calendar for 2019.  This event is part of a full running weekend including the double marathon event which, is organised by Malcolm Collins.  There were lots of huge achievements in the marathon events above and beyond finishing an actual marathon or two such as Amanda being the winner for the girls on Saturday, Scott getting a massive marathon PB and Dave being second placed overall for the double event.  Unfortunately though, none of those things earn any points on the spreadsheetJ.
So back to Sunday’s half.  The weather appeared seemingly pleasantly, sunny when most of us assembled for the team photo.  (BTW this is something which is proving to be a challenge.  We can’t get everyone on a photo so fingers crossed that we are third time lucky next month.  The ones we do have are great though.)  Chris did the run briefing and then we all set off from the gin pit trails towards the busway.  It was still a spring-like day into Worsley Woods which, is a highlight of the run.  We were checked-off and watered as we picked-up the canal stretch and this is where the cold wind was against us for 5 or so miles and it almost felt like we was back in winter.  Although the mud wasn’t as bad as it has been at times, the most runnable bit was on the canal edge and I did personally fear that I may get blown in at times!  We all got to the Marsland Green check point however, where we disembarked the canal and went over the cobbly bridge which, I must admit felt fairly steep by that point in the race which, is just before 12 miles.  The last couple of hurdles then were not getting lost back to the club and getting up Gin Pit Hill before the home finish where we were awarded with a fudge and a beautiful medal for our efforts.
We had 21 runners in the race and some very strong performances for different reasons.  Phil got a huge PB, Louise and Chris did it as a brick run for their Iron Man training, Nick ran it there, Jackie ran it home and a few people hadn’t ran this kind of distance in a while.  Here are the times and points awarded:
Tim Campbell                                     1:22:18                  30
Mark Collins                                       1:29:11                  29
Andrew Cass                                      1:29:27                  28
Shaun Moran                                     1:32:21                  27
Brendan Loughrey                           1:32:49                  26
Phil Griffiths                                       1:33:56                  25
Alex Gallimore                                   1:39:40                  24
Nick Goaley                                        1:42:57                  23
Ian Joslin and Woody                      1:48:48                  22
Paul Basnett                                       1:50:05                  21
Chris Bennett                                     1:55:53                  20
David Bennett                                   2:30:38                  19

Jackie Price                                         1:35:54                  30
Stacey Mamoun                                1:49:59                  29
Catherine Worsley                           1:54:44                  28
Louise Simpson                                 1:55:52                  27
Nicola Scott                                        1:56:04                  26
Joanne Gibson                                   1:58:05                  25
Andrea Lorant                                   2:13:28                  24
Kerry Lomas                                       2:13:46                  23
Tract Loughrey                                  2:16:41                  22

After the event it was nice to have a drink and enjoy some more of Joan’s baking with club members.  This time there were some lovely, gooey cookies.  Thank you Joan.
Huge congratulations to everyone that took part and a big thank you to all volunteers and supporters.  Thank you again to Malcom for arranging this for us as it really is one of the highlights of the road season (well a bit of it is on road). 
See you next month for a day at the seaside.  April 28th is the Blackpool Half Marathon, part of Blackpool festival of running.  T shirts and medals available at that one.  Enter online here
Thank you,
Captains Joan-Ola