Monthly Archives: February 2017
There are fewer more awesome sights anywhere in athletics than the National Cross Country Championships. Somewhere in the region of 9000 athletes entered from U13’s right through to the Seniors. As others have said, every Club runner should make this a target; And, as someone else commented, these Championships are the highlight of the Cross Country season with this years being contested in the wonderful setting of Wollaton Park in Nottingham.
Senior Men’s Race⇒ START VIDEO
The Men’s Senior Race was won by Ben Connor who added the National title to his success in winning the Northern title a few weeks ago. Not many athletes out for the Harriers but those who competed did really well and it would have been interesting to see where the Senior Men’s Team might have been placed with a couple more athletes. There were some good runs by the Harriers in the Men’s Senior Race led by Rob Warner who placed 58th in a time of 42.20. In 2016 Rob was in the 130’s, so a massive improvement for him this year and looking forward to the Northern 12 & 6 Stage in March at Blackpool. Also running impressively were Tim Raynes coming home in 127th spot (43.46), Tom Blaney (313th) with a time of 46.39 and Chris Davies 357th in 47.11.
Lindsay Davies was the lone Senior Woman in her race featuring nearly 800 runners and won with an impressive sprint in the home straight by Jess Judd (29.07) from Louise Small (29.10). Lindsay finished in 682nd place, posting a time of 48.32 and was really upbeat about the day and her own run saying “What a fantastic day it was for all the Harriers involved. Great atmosphere and a great course. There was a bit of everything, it was a bit muddy in places but this was ok because the rest of the course was dry. Bit of a climb on both laps which led in to a great downhill which I used to pass a lot of runners. I feel I am getting a lot stronger due to the extra miles I am putting in and it is showing in my times and I am placing further up the tables. On Saturday it was not about the runners who beat me, it’s about the 105 people I beat. Would recommend the Nationals to all Harriers, this is my second one after doing Donnington Park last year, I have enjoyed both and will hope to be doing it again next year”.
Amy Davies had one of her best runs in the U15’s Race coming home 61st out of a field numbering four hundred and twenty six runners and posting a time of 17.51 which made her the second Lancashire athlete on the day.
In the U15 Boys and U17 Men’s Races the athletes who entered were first timers and each one of them really enjoyed the occasion competing in a field of the country’s best runners in their respective age groups. Harry Wilkin who has only recently started to compete, ran in the U15’s featuring three hundred and seventy nine runners and placed 348th in a time of 19.39. In the U17’s it was also a first time for Nick Smith and Joe Gebbie who started off near the rear of the three hundred and two strong field, working their way through the Race to gain places. Nick came home in 209th with a time of 24.29 whilst Joe wasn’t far behind in 225th spot (24.56).
New PB’s for Katie, Roxie and Joe at BUC’s – Shaun shines at Wrexham – PB for Claire at Blackpool – Matt 1st V45 at Fastrax 5k
The Annual Bucs Championships took place in Sheffield last weekend with a number of Blackburn Harriers competing for their respective Universities and setting new personal bests.
Joe Monk had won the Steel Cup 3000m at the beginning of February in 8.59.13 and then the Valentine’s 10k in Lancaster with a time of 33.05 on February 11th. He was confident that in a good field at the Bucs he could run faster – and he did in his Heat, cutting nearly eight seconds off that previous time to record a new PB of 8.51.26, placing 5th overall. After the weekend Joe told the Club that he was “Really chuffed with the race, off just one session done at quicker than 3k pace, looking forward to running at Trafford this summer to see what I could run“.
Roxanne Oliver was another Harrier who had contested the Steel Cup placing 4th in the 60m Hurdles (9.32). At Bucs she set a new PB of 9.18 when she finished in 5th place in her Heat and was in an upbeat mood after her event commenting to the Club that it had been a “Great experience racing with some of the best hurdlers in the country. I’m happy to come out with a PB but still feel like I could produce much better times. I’m excited for the season ahead”. Katie Buckingham was in action in the 800m placing 6th in 2.33.67 setting off too fast as she tried to stay with the ‘ridiculously fast pace’ that had been set’ but in the 1500m she set a new PB of 5.12.85 by half a second over her previous outdoor 1500m time and told the Club “Great experience to race with the best runners in the country, really pleased to come out with a PB off injury, hopefully with training quicker times will come!!!“ Given that she has been out with injury and her first time over the distance Indoors, it looks as though there is going to be a revision of her outdoor 1500m time this season. Joe Pearse qualified comfortably for the High Jump Final with a clearance of 1.98. Having recently cleared 2.08m he went into the Final full of confidence. However, as sometimes can happen in technical events, the Final didn’t go as well as it might have done and he came 6th int the field of 12 with a clearance of 2.01m telling the Club “Although I made the final, it wasn’t to be this year. Disappointed but hopefully will bounce back ready for the outdoor season”. Big Jump coming up for Joe as he is certainly capable of it.
Wrexham Village Bakery Half Marathon – February 19th
Fourteen hundred and 22 finishers in this Half-Marathon which saw the first three athletes all get under 70 minutes with the winner, Patrick Martin posting a time of 67.56.
Shaun Livesey had a very good run, just missing a new PB by seconds when he came home in a time of 74.27 and took the 3rd V40 spot on the day as well.
After the Race, Shaun reflected on the run, telling the Club “It was only the week before the race did I decide to enter. It was to be my first road race of the year and following my reasonable effort at the Ribble Valley backed up with 6-7 weeks good milage I thought I needed to see where I was. I like to set myself a target and decided that 75mins would be acceptable. I started well and the first few miles were really comfortable at this stage of the race i must have been placed 40th, I didn’t panic I was on pace running my race. It was a the four miles point I made contact with Tom Cornthwaite who at this stage was having trouble breathing, I had a chat with him about maybe stopping but he said he had never dnf’d ever. After I had made contact with him he got a second wind and we both helped each other push on, taking places as we did. We both went through the 10m mark at 56:15 fourteen seconds slower than my 10m pb and I knew at this point a good time was on. The last few miles were tough with a slight incline and a headwind, but Tom took up all the running. We made the final turn and he started screaming at me to empty my tanks to the finish. I finished 17th overall 2nd vet 40 and a time of 1:14:27. I owe a massive thank you to Tom for keeping me focused when it started to hurt because Tom is the epitomy of how to hurt yourself when it comes to racing”.
Fastrax 5k Race 2
Sixty eight runners in this popular local 5k Race including four Blackburn Harriers and won by Joe Hudson in a time of 16.12.
Matt Nuttall was the first Harrier over the line in 12th spot with a time of 17.40 and was also the 1st V45. Given the wind on the day, all times were a testimony to the strength of the athletes. Andy Heys who had run the Bleasdale Circle Fell Race, won by Chris Arthur (34.56), the week before finishing 37th in 47.55, was next home in 22nd spot (19.01) followed by Bryan Searby (38th) with a time of 20.57. Just one place in front of Bryan in 37th (20.51) place came U15 Harry Wilkin who had run the Mid Lancs XC fixture the day before at Rossall and did this race to help raise money with his parents who also ran for Cystic Fibrosis. Well done to Harry for that.
Great North West Half-Marathon
Chris Steele headed home this field numbering nine hundred and ninety three runners by over four minutes, winning in a time of 68.29.
Lorna Sharp and Claire Bridge ran for the Harriers with Lorna only deciding at the last minute to enter. Clair set a new PB by nearly three minutes when she placed 525th in a time of 1hr 57.10 whilst Lorna, who hasn’t been able to do the training for this distance, wasn’t far outside her PB finishing in 645th in 2hr.03.00, just one and half minutes away from her best.
Mid Lancs League at Rossall – Win for Rachel at Windy Hill – Vet Wins for Paul & Joanne at Parbold Hill Race – Matt is 1st V45 at Fastrax 5k
A cold, windswept day at Rossall School greeted the athletes for the fifth fixture in the 2016-2017 Mid Lancs Cross Country League. U15 and U17 Boys and Girls had reduced fields possibly because of the clash with school holidays which was a shame, given the attendances for these Races previously.
The U11 Girls got off to a good start taking 3rd Team place on the day behind 2nd placed Southport, beaten by just two points.
Caroline Woodworth equalled her best finish of this season placing 5th in a time of 7.19 with Kate Cookson in 11th (7.42) and Keira Haxton (23rd) in a time of 8.02 being the three counters on the day. As so often is these Races, a couple of seconds is all that separates four or five young runners. Eva Knowles was next home for the Harriers in 27th (8.08) contesting a group of four which had just three seconds between them all. Hannah Davies came home 36th in the 70 strong field (8.37) followed in by Isabelle Hartley (42nd) in 8.42 and Olivia Banks – 8yrs old – and loving her experience of cross country in 64th with a time of 9.26. Finished with a smile on her face too.
Only three lads out in the U11’s featuring fifty eight runners with Saul Sharp, even though not that well, still turning out for the Team and placing 14th with a time of 7.20. He was backed up by Oliver Gill in 22nd (7.32) and George Marsden in 46th (8.16) all of which gave the Harriers 7th place in the Team competition featuring nine Clubs on the day.
New member David Holman, who was on the last minute, just making the Start, had a very good run in the U13 Boys leading them to 4th Team on the day and placing 9th himself in 11.09, with Ethan Barbarewicz just three places behind in 12th (11.22) and Kyle Taylor-Pomfret in 17th (11.58).
Twenty six runners in the U15 Boys Race, which saw Matt Ramsden come home 2nd to the winner Mathew McKay in a time of 14.26 with Leon Thomas 3rd in 14.28. Luke Ingleson placed 20th (16.56) and Harry Wilkin 24th (17.35) which gave the lads 2nd Team on the day.
Just one one runner in the U13 Girls (featuring 57 runners), U15 Girls (22 runners) and U17 Women (6 runners) for the Harriers, again reflecting school holidays. Eleesha Charnley who is lying in 7th place overall for the Series came home 6th on the day in 9.54 whilst Amy Davies who is in 2nd place for the Series kept up her challenge for the Medal positions with a win on the day in a time of 11.18. In the U17 Women, Maddie Elliott finished 2nd on the day (16.43) and is now in 3rd place overall in the Series and Natalya Irvine placed 4th in 19.27. Same story for the U17 Men with just 13 runners on the day, a Race which saw Joe Gebbie in 9th place (24.03).
It was the first run in the Mid Lancs League this year for Carly Edwards and it turned out to be a good run for her in the one hundred and forty one strong field, coming home in 22nd spot (27.29). Lindsay Davies placed 95th – her highest position of the Series – in a time of 34.35.
The Senior Men had four finishers in the first 22 places which was better than the first three Teams on the day, which was a good platform for winning but unfortunately we didn’t have a sixth runner to complete the Team. It was a great Race up front – 8 seconds separating the first three – with the eventual winner – Ben Johnson – maintaining the gap between himself Thomas Corrigan and Tim Raynes. It was a real battle between the latter for second place which saw Tim finish 3rd in a time of 34.29. Tom Blaney had another very good run in 11th place (36.19) with Chris Davies – 3rd V40 – in 18th (37.12), Mark Chippendale 22nd in 37.49 and Craig Greenough 113rd with a time of 45.13.
Windy Hill Fell Race – February 12th
What a fantastic debut from Rachel Jones who has just joined the Harriers. In utterly atrocious weather conditions, two hundred and twenty three runners finished the Race which saw Rachel finish 41st overall in a time of 76.32 and 1st Woman.
Carrying on with the winning theme were Paul Brindle and Joanne Nelson. Last week they combined at Lancaster with Paul winning the 10k Race outright and Joanne winning the Women’s Race. This week they entered the Parbold Hill Race and both were winners again, this time being 1st V45 in the Men and Women. Paul placed 11th over all in 46.35 whilst Joanne came 44th in 49.58.
(Joanne – That’s my friend, Hayley from Liverpool who was running it on her late dad’s birthday… that’s why we all ran it.)
(These two photo’s courtesy of SportSunday)
Fastrax 5k Race 2 – February 12th
More wind for the runners at the second Race in the Series, run on the cycle track at Barrowford. The Race featured 68 runners won by Junior Man Joe Hudson in a time of 16.12.
Matt Nuttall was the 1st V45 in 12th overall place, posting a time of 17.40. Next in came Andy Heys in 22nd (19.01) and Bryan Searby 38th in 20.57. Young Harry Wilkin (U15) ran at Rossall in the Mid Lancs League on Saturday and then ran with his parents Claire and Mark to raise funds for the Campaign for Cystic Fibrosis. He finished 66th in 20.51.
After the first two Races, Matt Nuttall is in 3rd spot with identical runs of 17.40 both times – Andy Heys is in 5th place, again with identical runs of 19.01 and Bryan Searby has run only one of the fixtures and lies in 67th place of the 103 runners who have competed to-date.
Cardiff Met Grand Prix Series GP3 – – Saturday 23rd January 2017
Joe Pearse was competing in his fourth Indoor Meeting of 2017 having already jumped 2.05m on January 15th – 2.01m on January 28th and 2.00m on February 1st. At his latest competition in Cardiff, Joe set a new PB height of 2.08m to comfortably win the event and moved himself up in the National Rankings to 14th spot.
Joe told the Club that hew was “Really happy with the performance and personal best and am hoping that I can build upon it in two weeks time at BUCS indoor champs!”
Myah Booth and Millie Coy were competing in Sheffield in the Northern U13 / U15 Championships at the weekend. Millie who is top of age this year in the U15’s has really come on in the 60m Hurdles in her first year, only ever having competed five times in the event. She kicked off the year with a 10.16 at Sportscity followed by a PB at Sportscity again of 9.93. At the Championships she ran a new PB in her Heat of 9.66 and then reduced it even further for a new personal best of 9.64 in the Final. Bottom of age Myah and in her first year as an U15 ran 9.97 in her 60m Hurdles Heat and in the Shot Putt where she is currently 13th in the National Rankings (9.80m) she threw 8.70m.
Individual & Team Wins at Winter Warmer – Brian wins in Dubai – Harriers qualifiers for English Schools – Winning Debuts for Joanne & Paul – Joe Wins Indoor 3000m
This years Winter Warmer 10k run in perfect conditions for endurance running had five hundred and thirty five finishers and among them twenty Blackburn Harriers whose athletes put in some great performances with Ben Fish winning the Race for the sixth time, Liz Greenwood winning the Women’s Race, Nick Smith 1st in the Junior Men and Victoria Mousley 1st V35. The Harriers also won first and second Teams with Ben Fish / Tim Raynes / Tom Blaney / Jack Hindle the winning Team and Chris Davies / Ben Costello / Sean Proctor / Richard Fogarty taking the Runner Up spot in the Team competition.
(Once over Billinge, it’s downhill all the way)
With five runners in the first nine places the Harriers emphatically took the Team Prize and were led home by Ben Fish in a time of 32.02 and backed up superbly by Tim Raynes (2nd) in 32.55, Tom Blaney (4th) in 34.41, Jack Hindle (5th) in 34.48 and Chris Davies (9th) in 36.18.
Ben Costello had a great run in 11th spot (36.49) and just missing out on a PB. Given the nature of the course for the Winter Warmer, there is little doubt that his PB is going to go in the immediate future. Sean Proctor was the next Harrier to finish in 21st place (37.53) chopping nearly three minutes off his previous best on the course with Richard Fogarty – following his great performance in the Dubai 70.3 – just behind in 26th (38.30) and another athlete who ran close to his PB on a difficult course. Like Ben, expect a revision of Richard’s PB shortly. Liz Greenwood is in good form finishing 6th as a bottom of age Junior Woman at the Northern Cross Country Championships last week, she won the Women’s Race here placing 29th overall in 38.39.
Mark Bleasdale came in 34th in 39.187 and he was followed by U17 Nick Smith in 38th, with a time of 39.54 and 1st Junior Man, a time which ensures that he too, will be breaking his PB pretty soon. Victoria Mousley had a very good race and was next home for the Harriers in 49th place (41.02) was 2nd Woman and 1st V35 on the day. Craig Greenough placed 71st in 42.47, with John Cookson in 85th (43.56), Danny Teare (148th) with a time of 47.30, Paul Clarke 160th (48.18), Ian Clarkson (169th) in 48.32, Mick Nolan (215th) in 51.32, Michelle Teare (224th) in 52.07 and Lindsay Davies 371st (59.36).
There was a fantastic turn out for the Winter Warmer Junior 2k featuring two hundred and eighteen young runners aged from 7yrs to 14yrs old.
Thirteen young Blackburn Harriers featured in this Race. Bradley Meikleham won the Race in a time of 7.05 followed by Amy Davies (2nd) in 7.36 and winner of the 11-13 Age Group. Just three seconds separated the next three Harriers in as Eleesha Charnley came 3rd overall and was 2nd in the 11-13 with a time of 7.55, followed by Harry Wilkin in the same age group (8th) in a time of 7.56 and Saul Sharp on song placing 9th in 7.57 and 2nd in the 8-10 Age Group. Then came Eleanor Allsop 11-13 in 24th overall (8.59), Hannah Davies 8-10 (34th) in 9.24, Codie Dewhurst 8-10 (35th) in 9.26, debutant Chloe Gardner 14-17 (48th) in 10.00, Ella Hardman 11-13 (60th) in 10.15 and Lulu Sharp 62nd in 10.20 and 1st in the 5-7 Age Group.
What a debut!!
Joanne Nelson and Paul Brindle who have recently joined the Harriers, raced their first Race for the Club together at the weekend with great performances in the 315 10k Series at Lancaster.
Paul won the Race in a time of 36.37 and was also the leading Vet and was understandably pleased with his debut commenting after the Race that “I was nervous, my first time representing my new club. Just wanted a good run and do blue and white vest proud. Was a great feeling when the 5k runners pulled away and I was leading the 10k. I thought ” so this is how it feels to be Ben Fish ” . I clocked Joanne was winning her race too. We both held on for a Harriers double in what turned out to be a great day”.
Joanne, winner of three Marathons in 2016 has started off in 2017 in winning ways, taking the 1st Women’s prize in 6th place overall and posting a time of 39.39 and told the Club that “I really enjoyed running the race today, especially in my new, aesthetically pleasing running vest. Not my fastest 10k time, but still enjoyable. With a bottle of prossecco, an iron (don’t ask), crisps and chocolate biscuit for winning, you really can’t complain. Well organised race by the regulars at Lancaster”.
(That double winning smile)
Lancashire Schools Cross Country Championships
Good day at the Lancashire Schools Cross Country Championships with six of the Harriers all gaining automatic qualification for the English Schools Cross Country Championships in Norfolk.
Qualifying athletes for the Harriers included :
Junior Boys – Matt Ramsden (2nd) in 14.32 – Sam Hodkinson (4th) in 14.52 – Leon Thomas (5th) 14.57 – Jamie Teare (8th) in 15.12.
Harvey Ashworth placed 14th overall in 15.46.
Inter Girls : Maddie Elliott (3rd) in 16.42 Qualifying – also running were Hannah Cookson (14th) in 18.30 and Natalya Irvine – 31st – in a time of 19.58.
Junior Girls : Amy Davies (4th) in 14.25 Qualifying and also competing – Eleesha Charnley 10th in a time of 14.57, Emily Warren (58th) in 18.31 and Jodie Hoole (59th) in 18.48.
Harvey Griffin ran the Inter-Boys Race which had fifty four athletes contesting. Harvey came 13th in 21.33 with Bradley Meikleham in 19th position (22.11). Nick Smith contested the Senior Boys Race placing 10th in 28.21.
In the Yr 7 Boys Race featuring seventy four youngsters, Kyle Taylor-Pomfret came home in a very good time of 8.50 (11th) and Edward Lee in 27th place (9.08). In the Yr 7 Girls Hollie Cubbon had a great run placing 2nd in the 71 strong field with a time of 8.55 and just seven seconds behind the winner with Leah Hoole placing 13th in 9.27.
Ironman 70.3 Dubai
The Race website describes the Course for this event ‘Athletes begin their day with a swim course begin from Jumeirah public beach, one of the region’s most well-known destination beaches and a getaway for travelers from all over the world. The bike route leaves the city behind and ventures into the Arabian Dunes. A 45km flat out and back will prove to be a very fast course, if winds stay down. The scenes of the natural Arabian Desert were previously seen on TV globally through the annual Tour of Dubai. Dubai recently completed a running trail along Jumeira Beach to be used by the public all year round. The IRONMAN 70.3 Dubai run route will cover three laps (7km each) along a spectator-friendly, packed beach. The crowd will cheer participants through the 21.1 run before they finish next to the start and transition area at the general grand stand’
Brian Fogarty has kicked off his 2017 season in great form placing 27th overall with a combined time of – 4hr 04.01 – in a field nearly 1500 strong, winning his Age Group and posting the fastest Bike Split by an amateur rider. Huge congratulations to Brother Richard Fogarty – making his debut in the 70.3 and putting in an impressive performance with a combined time of 4hr 50.25.
Brian was really pleased with his season’s opening Race and told the Club that “It was my second year racing at Dubai 70.3. Being so early in the year it’s a race that is hard to be in your best form but it does make a great opportunity to get in some warm weather and test yourself against a good field. The day was hot this year but went ok and I managed to finish 27th overall and win my Age group and fastest Amateur bike split for the 2nd year running. It felt great to be back racing after crashing out in my last one, it’s a good starting point to build on going into this exciting season. Performance of the day had to go to my brother Richard in racing in his first 70.3 and doing really well, finishing in 226th position”.
Following his good performance at the Northern Cross Country Championships the week before finishing 15th in the Junior Men’s Race, Joe Monk took on the 3000m Indoors in the Steel Cup at Sheffield. Agonisingly missing out on a PB by a fraction of a second, Joe won the Race in a time of 8.59.13 and speaking to the Club afterwards said that “really pleased with the run as it was the first in University colours. Was 0.5 seconds off my PB but given the fact I was on my own I’m very happy with it. There was a few good runners in there so it was unfortunate we couldn’t share the workload. Hopefully should be sub 8:50 come the summer months”.
Joe was out again at the weekend competing for Lancaster University at the BUCS Cross Country Championships in the Men’s Long Race placing 141st in 37.13 in a field of 333 athletes. Joe Howe was also running at BUCS for Manchester University in the Men’s Short Race featuring 573 athletes and he took 126th spot with a time of 30.23.
(No 210 Joe Monk – Lancaster University)
(No 882 Joe Howe – Manchester University)
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