Two hundred and thirty nine teams lined up for this years British Fell Relays Championships, said to have been one of the hardest for quite a while. Just five minutes separated the first five teams and just 29 seconds beteween 2nd and 3rd spots behind eventual winners – Pudsey & Bramley.
A big thank you to John Orrell who organised the Blackburn Harriers ‘Wainwright Warriers’ team of Thomas Marchant on Leg (1); John Horrocks & Mark Bleasdale paired on Leg (2); Craig Greenough & Danny Teare together on Leg (3) and John himself on the final Leg (4) as they finished in 160th position with a collective time of 5hr 46.21.
(Team Managers Privileges!!)
(Thanks to Richard Marchant and Ian Clarkson for all the photos)
Thomas Marchant on Leg (1) commented “The day was very well organised and set out. I was on 1st leg with the pressure to bring the team back in a good position ready for the second leg. The climb was very steady and steep towards the last section of the climb. I set off at a steady place hoping to build up through the race and gain places, which I did. Steady climb and a very fast decent despite the slippery conditions, I allowed my self to let go even if i hit the deck. Overall a fantastic race coming back in 63rd and a great day with a great team”.
(Leg (1) and ready for the off with Thomas Marchant)
(Thomas Marchant finishing on Leg (1)
John Horrocks also spoke to the Club after the race telling us “Fantastic day out in Grasmere for the Fell Relays and great running by everybody. Thanks John for the organisation and credit to Ambleside for a well organised event. Myself and Mark on leg 2 6.8 miles and 2800ft, started with a very steep climb to CP1 just below stone Arthur and then following walkers paths into the cloud on to Great Rigg CP2 and Fairfield CP3. Onto Cofa Pike, very rocky and technical running down to CP4. All down hill then to the finish, last steep decent we had people sliding passed us rather than running it was that slippy. I’ll definitely be running the route again!”
(Mark Bleasdale & John Horrocks finishing on Leg (2)
(Craig Greenough & Danny Teare off on Leg (3)
Commenting on the days events, Danny Teare said “Craig G and I subconsciously aligning on outfits was a good omen, or so I thought. With just enough fuel on board, John H and Mark B tagged us and we were away. We collected the map after 300m and CP1 was just like ‘heading up the M6’ – great! CP2 was more of a challenge. The clag was in, we got to within sniping range but could not make out features on the map or by sight, with all the drizzle. We got drawn into 2 or 3 packs who were seemingly as lost as us… and that didnt help… and we thought we’d blown it. We persevered and after 20+ minutes, we glimpsed the CP and got to dib in. Phew! The remaining CPs were more straightforward, albeit with some fierce climbing and rocky descending, and we just had to avoid injury and bring it in. We didnt quite manage to tag John O before his mass start – I will blame that on CP2! Many thanks to John O for top TM-ing!! The usual last minute, nail-biting changes to make but he landed it. Great event put on by Ambleside AC – iconic location and very well supported”.
Overall the day can be summed up by the coments of the athletes who contested the event and led by Team Manager John Orrell who gave his take on the day after it was all over, telling the Club “A big thank you to ‘my boys’ The Fell Fella’s. Your support was very much appreciated. I think we had a great day and did well too. A team with a 34 year age gap from 19 to 53 and we came home ahead of some teams from Chorley, Preston and Clayton too. Around 23 miles, 4 legs, 6 runners, well over 9000 ft of climbing, fog, mist, wind and rain. A Grand Day Out for Blackburn’s Wainwright Warriors. Leg 4 was a steady steep push up to Alcock Tarn. Then another ‘in your face’ climb to Heron Pike. CP 2 Herron’s south summit to CP 3 was a sneaky little trod bypassing the north summit. It was time to push on here in the fog as most in front had gone wrong and veered off right. Delighted to pop out the mist above Stone Arthur and the final CP in front of them before a near vertical decent to the finish fields. With a face full of mud and a bit of blood ’twas job well done!“
(Team Manager and Final Leg John Orrell)
Northern Cross Country Relays – Graves Park Sheffield – Saturday Ocotber 20th
This is not an event that the Harriers have been involved in over recent years, but after the weekends experiences by the U11 and U13’s, it seems pretty certain that this may become a regular for the Club.
(Thanks to Keith Gill and Michael Sharp for all the photos)
Another big thank you – this time to Chris Thompson who organised and team managed the six teams who entered and to the parents who supported the teams with travel to Sheffield and cheering through the day. The U11 Girls had two teams in a field featuring thirty teams where the Harriers finished 17th and 30th. The ‘A’ Team consisting of Imogen Robinson on Leg (1) 5.55, Hannah Davies 6.11 on Leg (2) and Eve Coulson on Leg (3) in 6.04 placed 17th overall. The ‘B’ Team of Lulu Sharp running 6.48 on Leg (1), Tippi Frances 6.53 on Leg (2) and Leah Smith (7.38) on Leg (3) finished in 30th position.
Twenty eight teams contested the U11 Boys Race with the Harriers teams coming home in 16th and 24th places. The ‘A’ Team were fantastically consistent with just two seconds separating the three of them as Findlay Carroll ran 5.44 on Leg (1) to hand over to Theo Robinson on Leg (2) running 5.45 and pulling back 5 places before George Ramsden clocked 5.43 – picking up two more places to being them home in 16th spot. The ‘B’ Team saw Charlie Haworth run the fastest Leg as he opened with a time of 5.52 followed by Alexander Brien on Leg (2) with 6.24 and Felix Thompson pulling back a place as he ran Leg (3) in 6.14.
The U13 Boys had a marginally bigger field which had thirty six teams competing. The ‘A’ Team just misssed out on a top ten spot by twelve seconds as they came home in 12th place. Theo Watson kicked off on Leg (1) with a time of 6.08, handing over on Leg (2) to Ben Livesey in 22nd place. Ben ran a solid Leg (2) in 6.15, pulling back four places to hand over to Dexta Thompson on Leg (3) in 18th. Dexta ran the fastest Leg of the team (5.54) to claw back six places, finishing in 12th. Just 12 seconds separated the three Legs run by the ‘B’ Team who finished in 23rd place – Daniel Smith ran 6.19 on Leg (1) followed by Oliver Gill running 6.31 on Leg (2) and gaining a place before handing over to Saul Sharp pn the final leg who ran 6.25 and also pulled another place back.
Green Drive 5 – Sunday October 21st
Always a sold out Race this one and over four hundred finished this years race won by Rob Danson in a time of 25.41 from Dave Norman in 2nd place (26.00).
Carly Edwards had a great run setting herself a new PB by a massive three quarters of a minute as she came home in 44th place overall, 5th woman and in a time of 32.30.
Amsterdam Marathon – Sunday October 21st
This race was won by Lawrence Cheroneo in a world class time of 2hr 04.06. Not quite as speedy was V50 Jonathan Bridge who finished with a time of 3hr 11.38 and a seasons best after clocking 3hr 14.04 in the Manchester Marathon earlier in the year. Claire, Jonathan’s wife who runs for Blackburn Road Runners also ran the race and clocked a good time of 4hr 13.29.