Alex’s Newspaper Report.

Rob slicks to a new personal best pulling away from Ben Fish in the Cheshire 10k in 2016

It was a quieter week last week with fewer races on, but there was enough to challenge those who wanted to venture out and not get waylaid by early Christmas shopping.

Finlay McCalman ran the Windmill Remembrance 10k in Lytham, finishing 590th in a popular race with a time of 58:56 (57:18 chip time). There were just over 1300 runners in this race.

John MacDougall ran the 38th Authentic Athens Marathon and clocked a very impressive performance with 2:51:42 at the finish line for 42nd place and 6th M45 out of 4051 finishers. Most impressive was his regular pace, with his time per kilometre around the 4:04 pace with a finishing sprint well under 4 minutes. His halfway time was 1:25:51.

Adam Wilding continued his current rich vein of form with 3rd place in the latest Pilling 10k on Saturday, running 35:49 over the village and country course. Alan Hudson was 22nd and 1st M70 in 47:51 just behind friend of Wesham Les Hill (M60) from Dumfries. Kay Twist was 5th woman and first W50 in 50:17, 29th overall. Stephen Twist was 31st 4th M55 in 51:11.

Saturday morning’s parkrun saw Wesham runners spread far and wide for their breakfast 5km time trials. At the South Manchester parkrun Tracey Ann Hulme ran 25:58 for a W55 age graded performance of 72.66%. In the Riverside run in Chester-Le-Street Emma Brook recorded 28:32 for a W35 performance of 53.04%; at Stretford’s Longford Park Martin Bates clocked 21:46 for M65 77.03%. At the Peel Park run in Salford Dave Williams ran 23:28 for M55 67.19%, and in the Roberts Park event alongside the River Aire in Baildon, Saltaire, Carl Groome ran 22:41 for M50 66.05%; Vicky and Gore Steven 26:21 for W45 60.28% and M40 51.80%; and Sue Rigby 34:25 with W45 47.55%.  On home turf, in Preston’s Avenham Park Nigel Shepherd had an easy day with 21:10 for M60 77.80%; and Damian Ings had 22:23 for M45 64.33%. Along Fleetwood Promenade Lee Barlow ran 18:48 for the third fastest time of the morning and an M45 grade of 77.84% as he approaches both his 50th parkrun and his 50th birthday. Rob Wallace clocked 23:11 for a senior grade of 55.64%. In Blackpool’s Stanley Park Stephen Browne ran 25:55 for M55 59.29%; James Danson 26:47 for M55 58.37%; Colin Gibson clocked 26:50 with M60 61.93%; Finlay McCalman ran 27:13 for M55 57.44%; and David Marsland 30:54 with M65 54.80%. In the Lytham Hall parkrun Steve Myerscough switched allegiance from his home run in Preston to clock 20:55 for M45 69.40%; regular parkrunner Jonathan Lawson ran 22:14 with M50 68.52%; Mark Belfield recorded 23:16 and M35 58.24%; Martin Allison 25:01 and M35 53.76%; Ian Nichols Hogg ran 25:52 with a rounded 50.00%; Andrew Moore 26:50 for M55 59.25%; Antoinette Holton clocked 27:33 with W35 54.63%; James Birchall 28:26 and a senior performance of 45.72%; Graham Cunliffe 29:01 for M65 57.78%; Clare Belfield 29:56 for W35 50.78%; Louise Lord 30:30 with a W45 53.11%; Jo McCaffery 30:59 for W40 50.78%; Peter Bartlett ran 32:31 and an M70 grade of 56.43%; Julie Rooney 33:22 for W45 48.55%; and Mark Holton pace-making with 36:47 for M40 37.97%.

In 2007 fourteen years ago Alex Rowe represented the England team in the British & Irish Masters International Cross Country between the five home nations hosted this year by Northern Ireland and staged in the spectacular surroundings of Stormont Castle. In the M50/M55/M60 race Alex worked steadily through the field over a 4-lap 8km course through rolling parkland with a climb over a wooded knoll to gain and hold 6th place, coming in 3rd for England in 30:30 behind teammates Greg Wilson and Stan Owen. The England M50s took the gold medals with Scotland 2nd and Northern Ireland 3rd. England won all the men’s age categories except M35 and M55, and Rowe was honoured with collecting the men’s team shield from Mary Peters, Olympic and Commonwealth gold medallist for the Pentathlon, who was presenting the medals. England also won the women’s shield and the overall competition. Gary Pendlebury elevated himself to 3rd on the 2007 M50 rankings for 10 miles with a superb 55:06 in the Brampton to Carlisle race on Saturday. Taking two minutes off his previous best he ran a steady race in good conditions working in a group in this high-quality event and reserved enough for a strong finish in 11th place. He was 1:14 ahead of the second placed M50 runner. John Bertenshaw was 10th M50 and 103rd in 63:44 with a good after several weeks of preparation. Trevor Rayner and Graham Vickers were amongst the other Wesham runners, but the full results are not yet available. Michael Morris of Morpeth won the men’s race in 53:01 but the women’s winner was Hayley Haining in 54:31 (8th overall). The Top 50 including the first three women broke the hour. The Wesham ladies won the women’s team race at the Preston 10-mile road race on Sunday with an impressive performance, beating hosts Preston Harriers by 9 points on the two laps around Hutton and Longton in cold frosty conditions. Joanna Goorney steamed ahead to forge her way to 6th place and win the W35 category in a time of 67:01. She finished 81st overall. Carmell Sullivan was close behind as 7th woman in 67:26, 3rd W40 and 85th place overall. Michaela Dempsey completed the victorious team with a strong run in 12th place with 69:40, 110th overall. Sarah Sherratt was 18th in 72:40, 5th W35 and 148th overall, and right behind her was Kath Hoyer with a great run in 19th position in 72:45. She was 6th Over-40 as there was no W45 category, and she was 149th overall. Julie Cruse was close behind in 21st place with 72:53, 7th W40 and 153rd overall. Pauline Weller was 65th and 318th with 96:45; Julie Murphy was 66th in 96:58, 319th overall; and Anne Docherty was 69th with 97:49 and 324th place. Steve Littler finished first for the Wesham men, running a creditable 55:11 for 5th place in a high-quality race where the first three finished under 53 minutes. Lee Barlow ran a storming pace to record a new personal best by nearly two minutes, recording an excellent 57:19 for 10th place. Having a race-long battle with Lee, Barry Norman just lost out by 7 seconds as he came home with a great performance to finish 11th in 57:26. Steve Myerscough just missed out on the hour with 60:01 for 24th place, bringing the Wesham men’s team home in 2nd place behind Preston Harriers who had understandably pulled out a top team for their home race. Keith Wilding was Wesham’s first veteran finisher in 34th position, coming in 6th M50 in 61:25 showing the quality of the local masters’ athletics. There was some confusion with the male veterans’ results, with M55 and all age groups above M60 missing. Alan Hudson was 2nd M55 behind Ken Moss but was credited as 7th M50 after a terrific run to clock 61:33 for 35th place. Peter Cruse finished 7th M45 and 42nd overall in 62:26, and George Kennedy was 83rd and 17th M50 in 67:07. Phil Leaver was 107th in 69:31; Adam Wilding 145th in 72:35; Stephen Wilkinson (M50) 172nd in 75:07; Nigel Shepherd (M45) 186th with 76:16; Brian Porter (M40) 209th in 77:46; Chris Moss (M40) 220th in 78:34; John Howorth (M50) 235th in 79:35; George Flanagan (M55) 247th with 80:16. Mike Walsh was 1st M75 in an excellent 81:22 in 255th place overall, just ahead of M60 Dave Young who ran 81:33 for 257th place. John Whiteman (M60) was 360th in 94:40.

Back in 2016 five years ago it was the autumn staging of the Cheshire 10k at Arley Hall on Saturday and Rob Danson ripped his previous personal best to shreds with 31:14 to finish 2nd outsprinting Ben Fish in an exciting finale. Conditions were very wet, but this did not dampen the performances. This follows Rob’s 5th place in the April event 6 months ago, his second fastest time of 2016. Catherine Carrdus was 9th woman and 110th overall with a good 39:19 finishing 1st W45. John Bertenshaw was 4th M60 and 179th with 42:04. Alan Hudson finished 2nd M65 and 45th overall in the Windmill 10k along Lytham Green from Fairhaven and back running 43:13, although the timings given may be incorrect. Kath Hoyer was 18th woman and 3rd W55 in 48:12 139th overall. Peter Cruse was the first Wesham finisher in the Catforth 5k on Sunday, running 19:00 to come in 12th and 2nd M50. Sean Murray was 31st with 21:27. Phil Leaver was 35th and 3rd M60 in 23:56 running nearly a minute faster than his parkrun the previous day, Dave Young was 1st M65 in 38th place with 24:44. John Howorth was 46th in 28:43 and Clive Berry 47th with 30:57. Following the Conwy parkrun Steven Gore took in the Trail Bettws Challenge, six miles of trail running through the forested slopes around Bettws-y-Coed. Steven finished 20th in 46:34 with the first two miles uphill to a secluded lake, the same venue used for last year’s World Mountain Running Championships. David Taylor came within grasp of his personal best at the Lytham Hall parkrun on Saturday morning with 18:22 for an age graded performance of 70.42%. Sharon Cooper took a break from organising with 23:17 for W40 67.07%, with Ben Wrigley in tow with 23:19 and M35 56.90%. Michaela Dempsey ran a new personal best of 23:53 for W50 71.04% with Phil Leaver 24:50 and M60 66.31%. Finlay McCalman ran 27:14 for M50 55.02%; Kim McGuire 28:24 for W55 65.45% and Debbie Bell 30:58 for W40 50.43%. Nigel Shepherd ran the Preston parkrun with a fine 20:55 for M55 75.38%. Martin Bates ventured to the Worsley Woods parkrun in 23:16 for M55 68.91%. Graham Cunliffe, returning from back surgery ran the Burnley parkrun in 30:18 for M55 52.92%. Steven Gore took in the scenic Conwy run clocking 19:41 for M35 66.98% while Megan Gore scored JW10 46.43% with a time of 37:48.