Rob Danson started off the 2019 Inter Club Grand Prix with another win, leading Wesham to overall team glory with a great start to this year’s series of seven races. Rob was away from the start after a heavy downpour dampened conditions and he toyed with Preston’s Dave Rigby round the first 2-mile lap before pulling away on the second lap by 19 seconds to win the 4-miler in 20:02, a good pace for a twisty course. Steve Littler was on great form and he finished 4th in 20:56 to place first masters runner and certainly first M45. Steve Swarbrick was second masters and 10th overall in 21:52 with David Taylor and ultra-distance master Ugis Datavs neck and neck in 19th and 20th with 22:30 and 22:39 respectively. Steve Abbott was close behind in 22nd in 22:52 and Simon Denye running well 26th with 23:00. Lee Barlow finished 28th in 23:15; Paul Gregory 32nd with a great run in 23:19; and closing in the winning team Thomas Crabtree in 37th place with 23:32.
The Wesham women were not so well represented with Helen Lawrenson 14th in 27:30 placing 7th masters and 137th overall; Carmel Sullivan was close behind in 19th place and 11th Over-35 in 28:00, 152nd overall; Anne Mayers-Smith 25th and 14th masters in 29:08, 188th overall; Kath Hoyer 29th with a great run placing 16th masters and 205th in 29:56 and Alice Deacon excellently placed 31st in 30:11 and closing the team 4th in the ladies division. The women masters were 3rd with Lawrenson; Sullivan; Mayers-Smith; Hoyer and Sara Ward 19th in 30:32 (36th woman and 221st overall. The Wesham overall masters were winners with Littler 1st; Swarbrick 2nd; Abbott 6th; Denye 7th; Barlow 8th and Gregory 10th; the M50 team was 4th with Garry Barnett 4th in 24;19 (53rd overall); Phil Quibell 9th in 25:06 (74th overall); Gary Pendlebury 21st in 26:48 (117th overall) and Carl Groome 25th with 27:00 (126th overall); and the M60s won with Quibell 1st; Pendlebury 5th and Martin Bates 8th in 28:31 (172nd overall).
The Wesham men had strength in depth with Christopher Hastwell 46th in 24:08; Andrew Harling 49th with 24:14; Leon Flesher a great addition to the squad 60th in 24:32; Steve Myerscough 67th in 24:43; Arron Galvin 72nd (25:04); Mark Renshall 78th (25:10); and Lee Nixon 99th (26:21). Luke Robinson finished 111th in 26:35; Jason Parkinson 118th in 26:49; Chris Haines 125th with 26:57; Stuart Topping 147th (27:46); Mick Edge the great triathlete 161st (28:16) beaten by the wife; Ben Wrigley 168th (28:26); Stuart Clayton (28:29); Stephen Browne 180th (28:48); Richard Davies 183rd (28:55); Mark Belfield 192nd (29:20); Dave Marsland 194th (29:25); Ian Nichols Hogg 199th (29:32); Ryan Azzopardi 210th (30:12); Sharon Cooper 37th woman and 232nd (30:56); Suzanne Leonard 44th and 242nd; and George Kennedy 243rd (both 31:17); Alex Beaumont 246th (31:31); Robert Brown 248th (31:34) and James Danson 249th (31:35); Finlay McCalman 260th (32:08); Louisa Denye 54th and 262nd (32:23); Colin Smy 266th (32:36); Graham Cunliffe 273rd (32:44) and Russell Mabbett 274th (32:45); Paul Eccles 278th (32:52); Stephen Twist 285th (33:10); Rob Wallace 287th (33:11); Tanya Shaw 68th and 291st (33:30); Tanya Barlow 71st and 295th (33:38); Kay Twist 74th and 303rd (33:53); Fran Hodskinson 76th and 305th (34:06) and Paul Carter 306th (34:11); Bernadette Dickinson 78th and 309th (34:17); Emma Davies 83rd and 317th (34:26); James Birchall 321st (34:35); Maureen Danson 85th and 322nd (34:39); Peter Bartlett 323rd (34:44); Antionette Holton 87th and 327th (34:48); Kerry Eccles 89th and 330th (35:01); Michael Hall 331st (35:02); Diane Blagden 90th and 332nd (35:10); Lucy Neighbour 95th and 341st (35:36) and Jo McCaffery 96th and 342nd (35:38); Anne Berry 102nd and 353rd (36:12) and Pauline Eccleston 103rd and 354th (36:14); Sharlan Butcher 111th and 365th (36:36) and Emma Wright 112th and 367th (36:38); Andy Moore 370th (37:00); Dawn Biggs 118th and 374th (37:06); Joy Hetherington 143rd and 403rd (38:37); Clare Belfield 147th and 409th (39:32); Sue Rigby 149th and 411th (39:52); Nicola Carter 159th and 423rd (41:52); and Leah Birchall 162nd and 429th (42:38). There were 455 runners in this record turnout between the five clubs and guests.
A crack squad from Wesham spent months preparing for this year’s Manchester Marathon and it all came good on Sunday in this year’s race. First to complete the 26.2 miles from Old Trafford around Altrincham and district was James Mulvany who finished 182nd overall in this top-quality event with a time of 2:48:26, placing 30th M40. Mark Belfield was 1567th in 3:18:12 as 355th Over-35 (not an IAAF Masters age category). Neil Gregson finished 2496th in 3:34:07, 516th Over-35, chip time 3:26:41. Steven Gore was on pace-making duties, and he guided Elliot Costello to an excellent 3:46:46 and 2547th place for the asthmatic sufferer. Paul Lancashire finished 2875th in 3:Neil Gregson came in 39:26 (493rd Over-35), and Rob Wallace clocked 4:01:03 to place 4504th , with Thomas Farquar just behind in 4:01:52 (4574th), although the pair recorded chip times of 3:41:15 and 3:41:45. Sean Murray was 6036th in 4:17:51 with a chip time of 3:57:56; and Lee Mangan ran a chip time of 4:55:36 (gun time 5:28:04) for 11171st place. There were 13371 finishers in the marathon. All the Wesham runners scored personal best performances, and it was Neil Gregson and Sean Murray’s debut marathons, and they have come on leaps and bounds since joining Wesham.
Wesham had four runners in the Pendle Fell race, which was the first on this year’s Inter Club Fell Series and also the first in the revived Wesham Fell Running Championship. Paul Gregory completed the 4.5 miles and 1499 ft of climb in 78th place with a time of 42:47 for the ascent and descent. Steve Myerscough finished 116th in 45:50, 32nd M40. Neil Whipp was 140th in 48:45 and 37th M40, while Nigel Shepherd placed 13th M60 and 164th in 51:24. Nearby in Burnley there were three Wesham runners in the Brun Valley Trail race, the next link in the club’s Trail Running Championship this year. Kath Hoyer finished 7th woman and 1st W55 in 51:22 for the 10km and 53rd place overall. Martin Allison placed 192nd in 61:55 and Jo McCaffery was 60th woman and 12th W40 in 62:05, 198th overall. In the Rivington 10-mile Trail race on Sunday Mark Renshall finished 13th in 1:18:43 placing 2nd M45. Russell Mabbett was 120th and 9th M50 in 1:41:56 and Finlay McCalman was 141st and 13th M55 in 1:47:41. Anne Berry finished 182nd and 9th in 2:00:52 and Diane Blagden 9th W50 and 190th in 2:03:07.
In the Garstang Gallop last week 10k Paul Gregory 8th in 44:13 1st M40; Kath Hoyer 8th woman and 65th in 55:10 2nd W55; James Danson 79th 57:38; Mark Dobson 80th 57:45; John Howorth 144th 67:57 4th M65; Dave Waywell 163rd 74:21 3rd M70; Diane Blagden 40th woman and 145th 68:07 7th W50.
Wesham members stayed close to home for last week’s parkrunning, with also some impressive performances and two fastest runners at separate events. In Lytham Hall David Traylor scored the fastest time with an impressive display of front running, taking the lead from the start and maintaining it to his finish in 18:05, giving him an age graded performance of 71.89%. Jonathan Lawson was next Wesham finisher in 21:45 for an M50 age grade of 68.35%. Ian Nichols Hogg ran 22:11 for a grade of 58.15% with Kay Twist 26:12 for W45 63.23%. Finlay McCalman ran 26:40 with M55 57.63%; Antoinette Holton 27:16 and graded at 54.65%; and Jack Rayson 33:54 for 38.05%. In the Fleetwood Promenade parkrun Steve Littler was the other fastest runner of the morning, clocking an impressive 16:18 for a new personal best and incredibly 1 second short of the course record and an M45 course age graded best of 87.01%. Steven Gore ran 20:38 for M35 64.70%; George Kennedy 21:57 and an M60 grade of 73.73% with Martin Bates 22:27 and M60 grade 72.68%. Vicky Gore recorded 25:53 for W40 60.33% and Brian Jones an M55 grade of 52.88% with his time of 29:49. James Birchall clocked 29:51 for an age grade of 43.33%; and Leah Birchall 35:41 for 41.48%. In South Manchester’s Platts Field parkland Tracey Hulme ran 24:07 for W55 75.05% and in Preston’s Avenham Park once again Steve Myerscough improved with a time of 20:52 for M45 67.97%; and Nigel Shepherd had 26:05 for an M60 grade of 61.47%. Blackpool’s Stanley Park saw the most of Wesham runners, where Lee Barlow stormed out an 18:32 clocking for an M45 age grade of 77.70%. Helen Lawrenson was the fastest woman of the day with 22:03 for W45 75.13%; Martin Allison ran 23:08 for M35 55.99%; and Keith Wilding finally kicked off his M60 clodhoppers and blasted out a swift 24:00 for an M60 grade of 67.43%. Jo McCaffery put in a time of 26:36 and got out a W40 age grade of 57.83%. Andrew Moore ran 27:01 for M55 57.87%; Tanya Barlow ran 38:44 for W45 41.82%; and Dawn Biggs clocked 40:30 with W50 41.89%.