FRECKLETON HALF-MARATHON – Sunday June 19th
Sunday afternoon in June – it must be the Freckleton Half-Marathon. Just short of 500 hundred runners, including a number from Blackburn Harriers at this years event, a Race which holds its own as one of the most popular over that distance in the area. Ben Fish was on the line up again this year and incredibly was going for his 10th win in a row, having won the Race over the last nine years. This year however, saw a new name in 1st position – David Rigby – with a time of 69.24 and congratulations to him for such a fine run.
It was not to be for Ben in his attempt to make it ten out of ten victories as he suffered from “plantar faciitis in my right foot and was ill. I thought it was just a head cold after a good race on Friday, but it got worse”. It was a great pity and meant that Ben couldn’t defend his title. However, it says a huge amount about him that he can still run 75.17 for 6th place given those circumstances. Ben, Jack Hindle and Paul Guinan combined to win the Team event on the day.
Jack Hindle had a great Race. His first time over the distance, 7th overall in a time of 75.32 and 1st Junior on the day as well as breaking the Course Record for a Junior. Jack spoke to the Club after the Race and commented “When I entered Freckleton I didn’t really know what to expect. I knew leading up to the race I had got some good training under my belt from the euro trials. I had an idea of a set pace in mind and set of, comfortably running faster than that. I knew that I just had to settle in after the first mile and that worked well. Getting to the last 4 miles, it was really starting to hurt but I felt strong and held the pace well. Super happy to get the junior record and go into the top 10 in the UK. Well done to Paul and Ben as well”
V45 Paul Guinan ran only his second Half-Marathon since 2010 and both of them this year, the first being the tough Heritage Race where he was 3rd in 80.05. At Freckleton Paul finished in 14th spot with a time of 78.16 and told the Club that it was “a solid run going into a Half Iron man next weekend, tough conditions which added to the strain going into the last 3 miles or so, pleased with the run overall”. V50 David Morris had never run the distance before but had a go at it finishing 473rd (2hr 34.07).
Held on Sunday June 19th this 12/6 HOUR ENDURANCE ULTRA / TEAM RELAY TRAIL RACE had been targeted by a number of Harriers including Chris Davies, Conrad McKee, Mick Leigh and Bryan Searby. Bryan was doing the 12 hour Solo event whereas Nev Rickard along with Chris, Conrad and Mick and entered as the – ‘Uri Gellars’ – won the Team event on the day.
(From L : R – Nev, Conrad, Chris, Mick and Team Mascot Millie McKee)
Chris Davies reflected on the event after the success of winning the Team Event and told the Club “I would like to start of by saying that this was a great event and that I thoroughly enjoyed. I ran with a great bunch of guys who were Conrad McKee, Mick Leigh and Nev RicKard. All ran brilliantly on the day and were great to be around through the course of the day.
I didn’t know what to expect with this type of competition, I knew that I could handle the mileage but I have never run it in this type of way were you run and rest, run and rest. Trying not to seize up and eating properly through out the day was always going to be a challenge but I felt that I handled that well through the course of the day.
The day started off really well as the weather goes, it was nice and cool for an 8:00am start and I was hoping it could stay like that for the majority of the day, not to be unfortunately. The weather did get a little bit to warm at one point when the sun did decide to come out and play but when it disappeared all we got was rain and some gusty winds from 3:00pm to the end (8:00pm).
My overall performance I was really pleased with. I managed to get 9 laps of the course in which earned me a prize for most laps in a team. I averaged a pace off 19:43 through the day and my fastest lap of the day was a 19:14 which earned the fastest lap of the day.
It was nice to win those prizes but to win the first male team over 12 hours was an amazing achievement and one I was proud to win with the rest of my teammates. The rest of the guys ran really well, some of them had niggles and some didn’t have as much training in as I had had so it was an amazing effort from these guys especially when we were getting to the end. The weather turned nasty, the course started to get slippy and heavier and these guys really did grind it out. Well done fellas. This is defiantly a competition I would look to do again and it’s possibly something as a club that we could look at in the future. Again, really good day and would do it again. Loved it”.