Author Archives: danielstinton

“There’s been snow on the hills!” Weekly Report

To start on a high note, tomorrow is the worst day of the year.  Official.  Bank accounts are quivering with fear.  Dry-January, veganuary, and all those other good ideas are beginning to seem a bit rubbish.  BUT not so for us Harriers – we should be celebrating our race successes of the weekend and looking forward to a whole year of epic running ahead of us.  Worst day of the year? Pah! As if!

Here’s what happened.

SELCC XC Heaton Park

Have the Webbinars paid off? Let’s find out with this report from Elanor Swan:

A small but perfectly formed GDH Team turned out for the 3rd Match of SE Lancs XC yesterday.  The race was back in Heaton Park, Tandle Hill having been deemed too muddy – one can only imagine the levels (depths?) of muddiness given the amount of wading that is usually required at Tandle Hill.  The weather was kind and the conditions underfoot were also benign so a good day out appeared to be had by all.  Results are as follows:

LADIES:  Caitlin Swan was 4th girl in the U13s, Josie Swan was 8th girl in the U15s, Kirsty Sharpe was 3rd Lady (31:32) in the over 18s followed at some distance by Els Swan who was 27th Lady in 36:43.  

GENTLEMEN: Nick Lord was first GDH home in 38th place in 41:39, followed by the battling duo of Phil Swan (45:49) and David Christie-Lowe (45:56), Frank Fielding (49:21) and Simon Toole (50:51).  Dave was 1st v60 and Frank was 2nd v65.

Run Coed y Brenin

Wales.  It seems to have its own gravitational pull for a number of Harriers who just can’t wait to cross the border to experience the gnarly dragon-like beauty it has to offer.  This weekend was the 6th annual Buff Winter Trail Wales – a half marathon route through the Coed y Brenin forest park.  Sounds amazing.  Paul Skuse sent in the below:

What can I tell you about this one? Well, it’s a long way away for starters. An early start, black ice on the roads and the sub-zero temperatures were soon forgotten when we arrived. It was stunning. Sadly, of the multitudes of GDH who had signed up for this, only 4 of us made it to the starting line: me, Pete W, Emma R and John P. (Does Harris count?) It felt a bit chaotic at the start as there were 700 runners and no system of placing yourself appropriately on the start line so it was elbows out and a bit of pushing and shoving the grannies and fun runners to the floor to try and get near the front of the line. I was still about 10 rows back when the gun went so spent a bit of time weasling through the crowds till the real race could begin. And what a race! That’s got to be the fastest, lumpiest run over distance I’ve ever done. The trails made it all runnable, the climbs made the running at pace a full on lung buster. Mile 11 was called the sting in the tail, a distinct climb with its own prize category. T.B.H. it felt just like the rest of the previous 10 miles but a bit less traily. There were no flats anywhere in the course. Conditions were perfect. It was joyous. The finish had an inflatable arch and a mug waiting for you. So to sum it up: it’s a long way away, it’s pricey and it’s really tough but one to be ticked off the list. Good shout Lucy W! No idea about results, not up on fb of the website.

Since Paul sent this in the results did come up and here they are, awesome work:

Paul Skuse 1:41:46

Pete Wallroth 2:00:05

Emma Rettig 2:14:42

John Pollard 2:17:21

Alderley Park Winter Trail Race

Alderley Park, I’ve never been there personally, but sounds like a nice place according to Wiki!  Tim Crookes took on the winter trail race and here’s what he thought about it:

Did Alderley park winter trail race this morning was very cold but a great course, a little bit muddy in parts but other than that it was great. Was happy with my time of 38.22 over 5 miles. Would definitely recommend it.

It looks like a couple of other Harrier’s ran it and here are the results:

Michael Park 35:45

Tim Crookes 38:04

Tony Hilliar 43:01

Dark and White Wildest Peaks Trail Race

Both the Dark and White Peak? The wildest? Let’s find out with the race report from Lynne Taylor:

At around 26km and about 500m ascent we were a little anxious the distance in the wild peaks would be testing….but waking to a crisp blue sky day with little wind made the wild peaks seem very tame. An early start from Glossop saw myself, Catherine Cleary and Ann Shackleton on the start line at the south end of the Burbage valley for our 8.30am start. 

The route headed north then doubled back to climb over Higger Tor, down under Millstone Edge then through the delightful silver birch trees at Lawrencefield. Dodging ice patches became the norm, and trying to guess which of the muddy bits would give underfoot or hold. Catherine had long since forged ahead and me and Ann decided to run together as were pretty evenly paced. A quick comfort stop at Grindleford cafe then up up up onto Froggatt Edge and all the way to 

Eagle Stone at the far end of Baslow Edge for the halfway point. 

Bearing north east you have a short road section then north and towards the finish line….but first you have to pass Little Barbrook reservoir where half a dozen wild swimmers were jumping around getting warm….they’d had to break the ice to get in and I was a little jealous tbh!!  Around this point we celebrated Ann’s 4th time at passing the half marathon distance…a superb effort and still going strong.

Up and over Flask Edge and past the Totley train tunnel vent would have been a lovely run (On albeit tiring legs) but the path was full of big icy puddles of varying depths so it was a bit of a roulette for fairly shallow to ankle deep icy plunges. The last marshal point came and they happily told us only 800m to go…down steep steps and back into Longshaw…a nice muddy grass path to finish and we were reunited with a fresh looking Catherine. Her time was around 2:38 and myself and Ann 3:31. 

A super route takes you across about 6 road crossings so along with the undulations there are plenty of places to walk or take a break, it’s a great trail run on very runnable paths fabulously organised by the Dark & White team.  There was also a shorter route at around 11km so if you fancy giving these events a go head over to their website.

 

Lamb’s Longer Leg Fell Race

Almost as local as they come, this is one of the collection of Hayfield Races.  If you don’t already know about it, it’s worth checking the website HERE as there are loads of great races, plus at the bottom of the main page there’s a list that shows races within a 10-mile-ish distance from Hayfield.  What a great resource!  Frank Fielding and some other “old-timers” (his words not mine!) ran it and here’s the report:

This is a cracking little local race. Although it is not much further than 5k in distance, it packs in all the type 2 fun, associated with fell running. Registration is at the Lamb Inn and starts on a lane 800 metres further down the hill. It boasts a steep climbing start that drags on longer than a sane individual would normally choose. This results in many of the competitors, reduced to a walk within a couple of minutes from the start. After this lungbuster climb, there follows a short section of level ground respite, before plunging down the ‘technical’ descent to the bottom of Dimpus Clough. (for the uninitiated, ‘technical ‘ usually means uneven/hidden rocks/ruts/ slippy/tussocky etc etc). Once this first up and down is completed, a contoured tussocky trod winds around the valley floor and leads to the start of the second climb, which becomes another long hard walk for most of us, returning us back to the track around the base of South Head.  Once the climb is achieved, it is the moment of truth to see what is left in the legs, as it is all runnable to the finish from here, including the second plunging descent that we all struggled up at the start. The finish line in the field above the pub is always a welcome sight

We had four ‘old timers’ turning out in club colours to sample the above delights.

Pete Daly was our frontrunner, in 29th place (don’t know time)

Frank Fielding was 43rd in 40:29

Nick Ham finished in 58th place, 42:20, and just held off

Pete Davis, 59th.

Essars Four Villages half marathon (Helsby-Cheshire)

This is the 37th year of the half marathon and as an added bonus this year is a qualifier for the England Athletics’ Masters Half Marathon Team.  Steve Knowles decided to give it a go:

Decided to give this one a go after a friend suggested it to me as it was a qualifier for the English masters half marathon in March.  The qualifying time for a male v45 was 1hr 22 minutes but only the first 5 vets in all age categories qualify on this and the Farnborough half marathon next weekend.

I knew this was gonna be very tough to get in that top 5 but I thought I’d give it my best.  The course is on quiet country lanes with bits of climb 440ft in total and conditions were good today, cool misty and no wind about.  Just over 2000 were running today and some very strong competition, I didn’t get a great start as the toilet queues were mega long and didn’t get chance to warm up (if you do this race get there earlier than I did) but managed to get in a comfortable pace, I was feeling it at mile 8-9 but after mile 10 it was downhill for a bit but knew I’d have to increase my pace to get under 1.20 which is what I was aiming for.

I managed 1hr 20min 4seconds so just over.  I was 15th V45 Out of 230 v45’s so no qualification for a English masters vest but tried my best, I’ll give it another go when I’m V50.  Some of you have probably done this race before, I definitely recommend it. 

Parkrun Corner

Laps around the park happened on Saturday of course and there appears to be rumours of a Glossop Junior parkrun which is fantastic news! Speak to Dan Ellingworth for more details.

Nineteen Harriers on the start line on Saturday with Cathy Murray bagging a PB!  Steve Page and Caitlin Rice were first GDH home.  Great running!  Consolidated report HERE

Laurie Barlow’s parkrun challenge is in progress!  You have to complete a parkrun beginning with the letters G.L.O.S.S.O.P.D.A.L.E.H but there are various rules on the order you do them in, which month and whether or not you’re a first timer (plus others) which earn various points over the year! It would help Laurie if you let her know if you’re taking part to make scoring things a bit easier.

Mental Health at the National Running Show

Ben Robertson sent in the email below:

I’ve not raced this week but my news is I’ve been invited to be a panel member at the national running show speaking about mental health and benefits from running and my multi ultra challenge last year.  https://nationalrunningshowbirmingham.com/speaker/ben-robertson

Top Mileage and Climbing

Loads of miles and elevation grabbing this week with Jamie Helmer taking the distance crown with 88.7km and Luke Holme showing us his climbing credentials with 2,535m elevation.

Annual General Meeting

It’s been all over Facebook but as a reminder the AGM is on Monday 27th January at the Oakwood.  The agenda is on Facebook HERE and it sounds like there’ll be a lot going on with reports from the Committee members and elections for various positions.  We have a fantastic club with hard work from Committee members and many club members to make it what it is, so come along to get involved and hear what’s going on.  Any motions should have been submitted by 18th January.  I have no idea if there has been any so can’t report on that, I’m just a GDH hack.

Don’t forget to pay your subs

See Alison Holt’s post about subs HERE and the membership info on the website HERE

If you don’t pay on time, the GDH Mafia will be knocking menacingly on your door.  They have ways to extract this money that you just don’t want to know about, so best to just pay up early.

What’s happening during the week?

Plenty of options out there: –

Tuesday – run fast for a bit then have a rest for a bit a few times on Jeroen’s speed session

Wednesday – run fast (in mud) for a bit then have a rest for a bit (in mud) a few times on Chris’ XC Webbinar.

Thursday – There’s a bit of a push to get the Thursday sessions a bit more organised so Mark Davenport has set up a DODDLE POLL where you can sign up to lead a run.  Steve Page is looking at getting the 10km handicap time trial up and running again.  Plod Squad is growing week-by-week.  All from the leisure centre at 7pm, but keep your eye on Facebook to find out what’s happening!

If you fancy a bit of pong there is also a regular Thursday “Tip Session”, down by the tip believe it or not.  6-8 x 800m reps with 60 seconds rest.  Great for all of the spring marathon training going on!

Frostbite series – keep your eye on FB for Tim Budd’s frostbite series navigation tasks, get wrapped up, dust off your compass and get out there in the hills!

Great to see so much going on.  Have a good week!

“What has 2019 been like then?” Report

Here it is Harriers, the 2019 free-for-all.  Thanks for all the submissions, it’s great to read all of your stories!

Here’s everything that came in (in the order it came in, no favouritism!).

Pete Wallroth

2019 has been about recovery after a rubbish 2018 hampered by mental health battles and injury niggles.

Have learnt to simply walk out the door and go if I want to run rather than sitting and pontificating about it. The result:

Support of some amazing club mates, a load of bloody awesome running days, taking the piss of out of Luke, amazing scenery, loads of ace new club members, marginally speeding up I dare say (nothing anyone needs to be remotely worried about though)….. oh and a questionable year end moustache! In all been runnable!

Steve Page

Representing the Club at London. Whilst not my goal time, the whole weekend was fantastic and I hope whoever is drawn out of the hat has as much fun as me and Tamsin did over the weekend. Electric atmosphere!

The GDH Peloton at The Tour of Tameside was awesome. Some of the most competitive and closely fought racing I’ve experienced in my relatively short time as a runner. That first night’s race with 4 of us crossing the line within 3 seconds will take some beating. Attached is a photo of me showing Crossman a clean pair of heels!

Round Sheffield Run. Me & Lucy 3rd mixed pair. Such a great event, and with a Paul Skuse deal of approval, this has prompted a bit of a challenge of GDH mixed pairs waiting to enter when entries open in January!

 

Simon Watts

I’ve loved running with the club this year, great turn out at the midweek sessions and some really good spirited and competitive racing. My highlight was the ToT and the GDH peleton which seem to grow with each race! Cracking racing by all, sprints on the line and we only just missed the team prize; next year!

Pete Tomlin

 I only started running in 2018, doing a C25k, and was kind of plodding around a bit, doing the odd parkrun. I challenged myself for 2019 to do some bigger runs, try out new routes etc.

In May I did my first ever 10k, doing the D&W white peak trail short course, which was great, and a real confidence boost that I could actually run more than 5k!

After that I feel like my running’s come on a lot, I joined the club in August and have ‘enjoyed’ several of coach J’s Tuesday sessions. I’ve gone from 10k to 10 miles, doing the D&W Autumn series. My parkrun time has gone from around 26mins to around 23-24mins. And it’s been great to meet a lot of you all and be made very welcome.

Next year I’m aiming for a half marathon in Feb. After that who knows!

Marie Williamson

Here’s a little bit about my 2019 running achievements….
I started 2019 looking forward to/dreading running the Brathay 10 in 10. I had some training marathons booked, & also spent time doing strength work & yoga, to prepare my body & mind for the challenge. My ultimate goal was to just complete each day, which I did. I ended up injured, by the end of it, which wasn’t a surprise really. But that didn’t stop me continuing the year running more marathons.
I’ve completed 27 marathons (& the Bullock smithy) this year…& may slip in one more before the year’s out!! My marathon/ultra total is now up to 75. I’m hoping to be in the 90s by this time next year, in the hope of doing my 100th early 2021. I’m currently trying to decide where I want that to be….

In other news….my guide runner licence has just dropped through the letter box. I completed the training several weeks ago.  Happy to support anyone with visual impairment to start/continue running.

Emma Peters

This year I decided not to focus on any specific targets but instead to just do what I fancied as opportunities came along. The most poignant outcome of this has been my ventures in the fells. From a couple of Bob Graham legs over Easter, to days out in Scotland and Northumberland and even the Yorkshire 3 Peaks, I’ve had a great year pushing the limits of what I thought I was capable of. Even still had time to run a 10km PB, get back into XC and start triathlon- not a bad 2019!

Paul Skuse

(Ed: Paul sent in a report and star rating for every race he’s done this year, with an impressive list of 35 races – all at full beans effort.  I’ve extracted the top-star ratings below – let me or Paul know if you want the full reviews!)

Chicken Run: First time at this and loved it. Really good, fast running. Don’t hang about at the start, there’s a bottle neck.

Buxworth 5: Possibly best race going. Love it. Long climb up, fast descent and a torturous flat mile at the end.

Joe’s Cup: Okay, this might be the best race going. Really fast start, good runnable climb and a nice easy descent with a final climb on tarmac to the finish. One of the best I’ve ever done.

TOT: This is now the benchmark for me with running with fellow GDHers. Running against but also with each other. Page on the half was amazing. Page, Crossman, Watts and Skuse –The Peloton! Forget the results, we were the best team! Never been prouder of being GDH.

Round Sheffield Run: Another contender for best race, also best event/day out.

Alderman’s Ascent: Horrendous weather, I thought it would be cancelled. An absolute classic and in the English champs next year. Also one of the best prize givings.

Holme Moss: The only real, local fell race. It chewed me up and spat me out. (I think it’s cos I was trying to keep up with Jackson at the start – the hill after the road crossing left me in bits).

Chris Jackson

Highlights for the year for me have been the Ring of Steall Skyrace in Scotland which was epic. Cracking weather, route and atmosphere. The uphill only races have been ace too. Hope to do more next year.

Lucy Wasinski

June 2019 gave me that race result I had hoped would never happen – my first (and expect not the last!) DNF. yeah I know it’s just a race, but I was gutted – this was my main goal for the year. Next day, still sulking, I pulled on my big girl pants, and entered Snowdonia Trail Marathon – and persuaded Luke H to as well! Nothing like a DNF to re-evaluate your goals – mental strength 0%, fear of failure 100%. Aim – to finish -we did. Granted it wasn’t all plain sailing (one word – Snowdon) but the positivity barometer was back in the green! Feeling inspired, and fit enough to do a marathon the lure of the Chester fun bus was calling!! Having never fancied a road marathon I felt like this was the time to do one with plenty of GDH both running and supporting. What an amazing experience – target time made with about 45 seconds to spare. It would have been more had the guy at the mile 6 portaloo locked the door and we’d not wasted those few seconds in awkward shock! With the DNF demons banished, I did what any normal GDHer seems to do, and jumped at the chance to do another marathon 3 weeks later when a Snowdonia road marathon place came up (yeah there’s a theme here, 3 marathons in Snowdonia). Having had disappointment, then delight at getting my road mara goal, I couldn’t wait to do this marathon just for the enjoyment of it – it was so much fun soaking up the support, enjoying the views, chatting to other runners and was probably my favourite race of the year!

2019 was not the running year I had planned – 1 marathon became 3.5 marathons, but wouldn’t have changed it for anything – that DNF led to new challenges, new opportunities, new friends, new trainers…obvs…and lots of brilliant memories. So don’t be like me andlet a DNF disappoint you (at least not for too long!) cos you never know what it brings!

Daniel Stinton

I’ve had quite an epic year of running! It has mainly been focussed around training for, and painfully getting through, the Lakeland 100 in July – definitely character building!

Other highlights include finishing the Welsh 3000’s with Immy Trinder which we started in heavy snow – to put this into perspective  we had planned a BBQ for when we finished!  Running in both of the GDH relays was fantastic especially the final descent in the British relays!  In August it was cool to see growing numbers at Manor Park Marathon which started as (and still is) a silly idea!

Steve Crossman

(Ed: Steve went for a “picture says a 1000 words” approach)

Cogito Ergo Run

Elanor Swan

My New Year’s Resolution for 2019 was to run bravely and, unusually for me, I actually managed to fulfil this resolution. This was thanks, in large part, to our wonderful club. My ‘running brave’ list included Trigger, High Peak Marathon, Old County Tops and Lakes in a Day all of which were big challenges for me in terms of nav/ distance/ terrain. I absolutely could not have done any of these without the support of many many Harriers in terms of reccying, training, team mates, gear advice, race crews and general support and encouragement through the year. Thank you everybody!

Running is a big part of life for Family Swan and we all really enjoy being part of GDH. Roll on 2020 and many more blue and orange running adventures!

Ian Crutchley

Lots of races again this year.  OK, perhaps too many – the result sometimes suffers, but I enjoy it, so shoot me!  Here’s a summary of the highs and lows….

Races where I really bombed – Edale Skyline, Sale Sizzler, Chester Marathon

Races where I didn’t bomb too badly – Trigger, Haworth Hobble, Manchester Half, Bullock Smithy

Races where I didn’t bomb at all – Marple Beer Run (4th, I finally uncovered my true gift)

Other highlights?  15 Trigs, Kinder Killer, FRA Relays, all and countless short fell races.

Had fun?  Type 2 mostly, but it’s a pleasure to experience it with GDH friends – like-minded, yet all different.

Next year?  Time to stop messing about and plant my flag.  I’m a fellrunner, very average, but there it is.

Tim Budd

This year I have been able to get out and enjoy runs on Sundays, mainly due to the rather superb and eloquent report writers that have graced the website. Thankyou lucy, Greg, Dan, Ian and Els. You are awesome.

Lance Hamilton-Griffiths

This has been my first year as a member of a running club and I feel very lucky to have chosen GDH. Over the last year I have experienced amazing support and encouragement from all of my interactions with members of the club.

Before joining I had no/little running experience and other than a couple of parkruns my first competitive race was the 2018 Bill Fox Gravy Pud, which I loved. Since then I have been on many adventures through my inability to decline an invitation delivered with a smile. I have had an amazing year filled with a ton of joy, too much sweat, some unwanted blood and thankfully no tears. My membership with GDH has made me stronger, happier and most importantly connected me and my family with a wonderful community full of beautiful people, Thank you.

Jude Stansfield

For my 50th year I undertook three running challenges. All in the first half of 2019 to leave me a good few months of partying at the end! With the Audacious Gals team (Becky Smith, Ali, Els) after 8 years of entering, we finally got a place and a run at the High Peak Marathon on 1st March. 42m team navigation  on the Edale Skyline. Setting off at 10pm it was nice to be near the front and then cheer all the fast teams overtaking us. We’d reccied it to death, got some good lines, an annoying wrong line or two, had great support and made it round. Great achievement for us all and just fabulous to be out training through the winter months with GDH friends. Motivational team work and camaraderie.

Next up was Old County Tops, slightly less miles but much more ascent. Els ran amazing. I suffered with the incredible humidity. My body wanted to lie down, and despite making me dizzy and nauseous, I managed to stumble over the boulders and marshy bits to Cockly Beck in good time before hitting the slow button. Very slow. Felt much harder than HPM. Felt shit. Looked shit. Very proud to have completed.

Finally Lins and I did a leisurely Tour de Mont Blanc over several glorious days. Setting off in the France heatwave meant we were fast walking, not running much, even the downhills were exhausting. As usual we were well matched and had great days of pure sunshine, plenty of water, good food and spectacular views. Never thought Id say it but poles were essential, maybe because of the heat, but really easy to use and everyone had them. We had a fab week. I  would thoroughly recommend it as a running or walking challenge (not the ridiculous race that our super runners do 😉

John Pollard

On a personal note I’ll look back on 2019 as the year I re-found the joy of running and rekindled my love of the Lake District especially.  Having re-joined GDH the previous year but due to injuries it was only this year I really got my teeth/feet into more competitive action as well as testing myself against the elements for the fun of it.

It’s quite a different club from the one I knew in the 90’s, but without being too judgemental I’d say it’s not just a much bigger beast but an even more friendly and close knit one. The camaraderie is great to experience. Makes me wish I still lived in Glossop to be closer to the hub and the hills.

Getting a caravan in the Lakes though(and being retired!) gives me a fabulous opportunity to explore it, and many of my best memories of this year have been runs or walks there.

Like at Coniston Fair fell race, when I naively asked if there was a preferred trod to look for, and was bluntly told “it’s a fell race lad, tha’ gets up & down using tha’ wits tha’ knows”(country cousin stereotype noted).

Or at Blencathra on a murky evening, when after a chat with one of the marshals about my likely pace, he made a point of introducing me to the tail sweeper.

Or at Black Combe, where I got injured, then lost, & ended fighting a losing battle with fierce man-high brambles, which hurt my pride as much as anything.

I’m itching to be back to do more next year.

Reflecting as we often do this time of year, I think, like others, of those great people who are no longer with us, but rather than cast a shadow I can see that the carpe diem mantra is really alive in this club, and we don’t just run for ourselves, we run for all.  When you reach pensionable age you can be prone to musings on mortality..(note to self…lighten up John!)

One thought; there are so many strong, accomplished, fast…younger runners in the club that it sometimes makes us plodding vets think twice about joining in on the fells, that we might be slowing down the pack on a run…I’ve only had encouragement tbh & I guess there’s a range of runners to find your own paced group.

Parkrun Corner

First place overall and a new shiny PB for Lucy Wasinski (and Rowan) comfortably breaking the 20-min milestone at Glossop parkrun.  Lance Hamilton-Griffiths and Tracey Robinson (and Cecil) bagged PBs this week too.  Awesome running! The consolidated report is HERE

Big Miles and Smiles

Who has done the most mileage this week?  I’ve not looked yet, but it’s gotta be Will Mather surely…. *checks Strava* Yup…. Will on his epic December challenge of running 804.7 km (ok, ok 500 miles) for Mummy’s Star and has ticked off 137 km this week and it’s only gonna get bigger.  If that wasn’t enough he’s also bagged the most elevation with 2,574m (It can only mean David Christie-Lowe has fixed his watch!)

Donate HERE

Other stuff

Stockport 10 happened.  I did this a few years ago and remember running along with a horse.  Guy Riddell made the top trump cards the same year too I think.  David Munday, Susan Moore, David Christie-Lowe, Cheryl Stitt, Wioleta Wydrych and Alex Critcher as far as I know, maybe more.

There’s been a Peak Raid.  Which were cancelled, but now aren’t thankfully.  Lynne Taylor was there and report suggests “stupid cold feet”.  I haven’t spotted any other harriers there.

All the other standard stuff, Tuesday speed, Wednesday muddy speed, Thursday social.

SEE YOU ALL AT THE PARTY THIS AFTERNOON! WHO WON THE CHAMPS? WHO “BOMBED OUT”? FIND OUT LATER!

“That’s October boxed-off then” Weekly Report

Good evening Harriers! I thought I was in for an easy week, but as ever, information keeps rolling in!  There’s lots of Facebook activity about races for 2020, so much so that I’m sure some people must be on commission!  Time to start thinking about next year, is it going to be a scattergun of random races?  Are you focussing on one or two biggies?  Or are you still just coming to terms with November?

Also, worth remembering that the Champs races for next year will likely be announced towards the end of November when they’re been given the stamp of approval by the Committee, so don’t fill up your calendars too quickly!

Here is the report.

New York Marathon

After ticking off the Manor Park Marathon in August, Bartek Verde has just finished one of the more low-key marathons in New York.  I’ve just looked at the tracker and he got round in a solid 4:13:26.  Great work!

 

White Rose Ultra 300

No, that’s not a typo, this is actually a thing.  300 miles.  I’m not even sure if Riccardo Giussani is a Harrier, but I think he is.  He seems to have taken on the White Rose Ultra 300 on his own which is ten laps of the standard WRU route.  With a 30, 60, 100, 150 and now 300 mile option the number of laps on this race seems to be growing each year, when will it end!  I’m not sure how he’s doing but last thing I saw on social media he was pushing through the 30-mile laps. What an epic achievement (or what a stupid thing to do – you decide!)

Tatton Park Half

Wendy McMahon took on the Tatton park half and sounds like it was a great race!  Hope she celebrated with some slap-up nosh in Knutsford afterwards!

I did Tatton park half today in 1:51:09. It’s a 2-lap course around the park. I’ve never been before so when my friend dropped out on Wednesday, I snapped her offer straight away. It was cold and very foggy which meant I couldn’t take in the views as much as I wanted.  I’d definitely recommend it as a race as it’s a lovely place, decent price for a T-shirt, medal, water stops, free parking and refreshments after.  It’s not just the PB time I was happy with, I am more chuffed that when the place was offered, a 13.1 mile race didn’t faze me at all!  I didn’t see any other GDHs there and the website doesn’t search under club. 

Peak Raid

Peak Raid is back after the sad announcement the series had been pulled due to problems with permissions which seems all too common at the moment.  We deployed a few Harriers to check out the event with John Stephenson taking on the White Peak correspondent duties:

 A small, high quality turnout from the Harriers were at the first of the new Peak Raid events today. The venue was Alstonefield near Ashbourne, the event territory was the limestone dales. Dave Hogg, Nick Ham, Sue and Chris Clapham and muggins ran.

Weather was very fair but boy was the going wet underfoot in the low lying flat fields, muddier than a muddy Manchester XC.

I think the results were

Nick and Dave 380 points apiece

Muggins 340 points(finished 40 mins early!) Sue and Chris 200 (walking).

Next event is at Great Longstone in early December.

John (finished too soon) Stephenson

Lake District Weekend

A gaggle of Harriers have been partying up north staying at Skiddaw House which seems to be a bit of an off-grid, out of signal retreat, something we all need nowadays.  I’m not sure exactly what happened but it looks like Skiddaw and Blencathra were ticked off and probably a lot of booze! Great stuff.

 

Yorkshire Three peaks

When I read this report I started to worry about the “run your age in miles” approach, because let’s face it, that’s only going to get harder.  All fine for these youngsters though as Emma Peters reports:

Quick email as I’m currently waiting for food in a pub, but I’ve just completed Yorkshire 3 Peaks with some uni friends. One of them decided to run 27 miles for her 27th birthday, so that’s what we did!

All went remarkably well. Bad visibility throughout but no rain!! Total distance 43km, strava still syncing with bad internet so unsure of elevation etc., but in any case a lot of up, a lot of down and a lot of claggy mud and slippy slabs. Not my favourite route on account of the slabs, but to be expected with the popularity of the 3 Peaks I suppose. Overall I’m super proud- this was by far and away my longest run.

Parkrun Corner

Someone decided it would be a good idea to have a big fire at Manor Park so our favourite parkrun was off, but as if that would stop us! Click HERE for the consolidated report.

Chris Webb picked up first place at Oldham with a straight 18 minutes! Fantastic! The Munday family had an extreme reaction to Glossop parkrun being off and went to Germany to run the Ziegelwiese parkrun.  Epic parkrun tourism.

Top Mileage and climbing

It’s an incredible one this week folks, almost like someone’s altimeter was broken.  Whilst credit needs to be given to Paul Peters for his solid 96.4km for the week, David Chrystie-Lowe clocked up a couple of summits of Everest with 17,403m (but not a patch on his 41,667m last week).  Even a ten-miler along the flat trail gave an impressive 9,556m of climbing which even Kilian Jornet would be proud of!

Wot else is ‘appenin’?

I’m a bit short of pics this week so hired in some professional models to try and make running look glamourous.  Here are the Bleaklow Boys, what do you reckon?

No excuses for not training throughout the week Harriers.  Starting this week there’s now three club sessions to keep those legs moving on these dark nights.

Tuesdays: You know the drill for the ever-popular Tuesday speed session.  A variety of tarmac and trail pounding led by Coach Jeroen, what better way to finish off a Tuesday (or your legs).

Wednesday:  The now-named XC Webbinars are back in force starting 6th November.  If you like muddy misery, then get yourself to Bankswood Park at 7pm armed with a headtorch, vest (if you’re tough enough), shorts and suitably grippy footwear.  The first of the sessions is a 6 x half-mile XC loop hard with a two-minute rest, during which your wet shivering hands will be attempting to grip a pencil and fill in your time on Mr Webb’s spreadsheet ready for the full statistical analysis afterwards.

Also worth mentioning that it’s match 2 of the Manchester Area Cross Country League (MACCL) on Saturday at Kenworthy Woods.  Chris Webb will be there with numbers for anyone who didn’t collect theirs at Wythenshawe. Don’t forget: you use the same number all season!

Thursday: After all those hard efforts it’ll be time for a Thursday social either out on the fells or road.  Perhaps a few post-run pub visits on the lead-up to Christmas would be good to help keep the numbers up?  Throw out suggestions for routes or pubs!

It also looks like the Sunday ten-mile Longdendale trail session is becoming a firm-fixture in diaries.  Get some flat social miles in!

Time Trial Nav Courses: For a few weeks now, Tim Budd has been plotting….  no, not an evil plan, but some really great navigation time trials out there in the hills.  Dust of your compass and give them a go.  You also get to see all the efforts overlayed so you can see just how lost you were.

GDH Christmas Party 2019

A date for your diaries – We’ve swept the Scouts out of their hut to make way for the GDH Christmas Party on Sunday 15th December 2pm – bring food to share and drinks.  There might be some Howard Town offerings like previous years (we’ll have to raid the brewery if not).  There will be champs prizes and the prestigious bombed out trophy.

There’ll also be a club run in the morning where you all get dressed up in silly stuff and run up a hill. But let’s face it, that’s pretty much what we all do every week anyway!!

Keep sending in the reports and pics to gdhweeklyreports@gmail.com

 

 

 

 

“Splish, Splash, Splosh” Weekly Report

I’ve tried my hardest but, being English, I think it’s physically impossible to not mention the weather – it’s been rubbish!  I went up to Black Hill on Saturday, which actually involved a significant amount of wading, squelching and swearing rather than running.  I do find that no matter how bad the weather, there’s almost always a moment where the rain stops or the mist clears to give a moment of calm where we can reflect on how lucky we are to be able to be out running in the first place.  Enjoy it folks.

Here’s the report!

Berlin Marathon

Sean Phillips must’ve forgotten that Chester was coming up and decided instead to enter Berlin, one of the races in the World Marathon Majors.  Many eyes were glued to the tracker and he maintained a fabulous pace throughout ticking off the first half in 1:26:45 and coming over the line in 2:53:37.  A report from the scene suggest that he finished the race and started eating samosas and drinking hot chocolate and beer, which I’m not sure how to react to.  Absolutely brilliant running Sean! Here’s his report:

We arrive on Thursday, so I could get to the expo, maybe when it was less busy. Ha. And have a wee look around.  We got the the Expo at about 12, and it… was.. err.long.

It’s in an abandoned airport which was pretty cool. But then the queues start.

The longest was the first where you need the QR code and driving license for a wrist band and bag, with lots of advertisements in. Then you go into the hangers all the way to the end for the second queue, still long.. and they check your wristband…Then there are lots of lines, when you get to the front they check the QR and ID and give the bib (they probably have a very good reason for splitting the staff among 3 queues. But beats me).

At Berlin they don’t give out finishers t shirts automatically – you buy one at the Expo. So it was utter chaos in there – and the queue to get a t-shirt was by far the longest. Some were even wearing the top before they’d finished the marathon which seems bad luck!!.

Saturday is parkrun day! But I had decided not do it (I get too excited) but Vicki was there to get the international. On the U-Bahn we instantly met some scousers (naturally), they were serious parkrun tourists talking about going to Namibia for the run…. when we got to the stop it was the blind leading the blind with a ton of brits wondering who’s gonna get out google maps first.

As expected it was a great atmosphere at parkrun, with 733 instead of 136 the previous week.

After we got back, we did just a few touristy things try to keep the step count down and I had the usual pizza pre mara.

RACE DAY

I didn’t get much sleep the night before so it was a good early start to get the nutella on bread (didn’t pay for breakfast so it was a lidl shop and no toaster). Getting to the start was pretty easy and I was there 45 mins before for the inevitable toilet queue.

Getting in to the pen was a bit odd. There was no entrance to the waves (unless they expected us to go to a wave further back and push through thousands of people to get to our wave) so people were climbing over the barriers. IT begins.. always exciting when the announce the elites with Bekele.

It’s a bit unfortunate that one of the biggest tourist sights is in the first 1km, but the Victory Column was damn impressive! Other than that there is not really much I remember about a good portion of the race … like all big city runs a good part of it there were just walls of people.

Having always used miles for distances and Berlin using km, I kept trying to calculate how on/off target I was – I found it pretty useful actually to keep my brain busy and my legs mindlessly ticking over. I knew I was on for my target so enjoyed it! Then km 35 came… upto that point it was drizzly but the heavens started to open which coincided with the feeling of ‘ooo, hurts too much now’ when we also tell ourselves ‘there been too many 5am Saturdays to mess it up now!’

So I managed to keep pushing, then seeing the Brandenburg Gate – again very impressive! – at 41km and Vicki was a great pick me up! To finish in 2:53:45, so ecstatic with that 🙂

Then the heavens really opened.. there is then a good old walk to get your medal then fruit, then by the point you’re freezing the poncho is in sight (fair play that was a life saver). Before exiting you have to take the timing chip off.

Now the timing chip I’d not really seen before, think they might be used in tri..? You have to undo you laces to thread it on.. meaning at the end bending down…eugh. This took time, the helpers just shaking the boxes for you to put the chips in..great thanks for not ‘helping’. anywhoo, a good few minutes later I was out finding Vicki!

All in all. Great race! Shame about the weather, it also feels like the organisation sometimes could have been a bit better – also they need to give away more free stuff!

Right I waffled on for too long, but it’s given my legs good time to recover before heading out for a beer and good food.

Fell ‘n’ Back

That pretty much describes every fell race ever doesn’t it?  Well the official Fell’n’Back was in Buxton and set up by Buxton Mountain Rescue.  Nick Ham gives us this report (well, I lifted it from Facebook anyway):

Me and James formed the Glossopdale contingent at yesterday’s Fell ‘n’ Back. What a difference a week makes, from the hot sunshine of Lantern Pike to running in a washing machine.

It’s quite a trek from registration to start, then we ‘enjoyed’ another run back to our cars to get them off the pavements because the organiser was afraid of everyone getting police tickets. We were allowed half an hour’s delay before starting. Thanks to that I got to finish in an oasis of sunshine, hot and flustered after trying and failing to remove my smock on the final descent. A modified route had shortened it to 10.5 miles.

Roche Abbey Marathon

An undulating 6.1-mile lapped race somewhere in Yorkshire.  Marie Williamson ran this on Saturday and the official post-race Strava comment was “Thank Christ that’s over!”  A comment which can no doubt be applied to many situations in life.

Lakeland Four Passes

Four passes? Pah, City strung together 44 passes before slotting that goal in past United last year, surely four is pretty straightforward?  Well not when those four passes happen to be in the Lake District.  The race involves around 19 miles, 1,600m of climbing, taking in four scenic valleys and their adjoining passes starting and finishing in Borrowdale. Kate Bowden (presumably not in full City kit) ran it this weekend.  Here is her report:

This is a cracking route run by Ascend events who opened up this unused LDWA route – closed due to over popularity in the past and I can see why. It’s long enough with enough elevation to be a challenge without being brutal. And the scenery is stunning – whatever the weather. Luckily, aside from running through a lot of water, there was little overhead and the drama of the skies and autumnal scenery was fabulous. It’s a self-navigated route starting in Rosthwaite, heading over to Seathwaite then up Sty Head, over to Wasdale, up Black Sale Pass, over Scarth Gap, Gatesgarth, and finally up Honister Pass before heading back for a cheese pie dinner and pudding. The check points were fab and even had quiche (best running food ever). Ascend offer a handful of similar events, for runners and walkers; friendly, non-competitive, great food, and a huge fancy medal! I loved it, despite some knee pain lingering from the BS – I will be back. (results not yet out, but basically it took ages and I won’t bother checking!)

Do you agree with Kate? Is quiche indeed the “best running food ever”? Answers in the comments.

Peris Horseshoe

Classed as an AL (Absolutely Lovely), the Peris Horseshoe starts in Llanberis on a 28km loop with 2,600m accent including the Snowdon Summit.  Understandably it ended up the bad weather route so skipped Lliwedd and seems to have dropped down the Miners’ Track instead.

Kasia Osipowicz looks like she had a great race with 5th lady and 29th overall.  Chris Jackson raced and reported that it was “wind, rain and proper slippy”.  Perhaps he should have taken his poles?

Holme Valley Trail Half

News just in, Adele Metcalfe  did the Holme Valley Trail Half yesterday , a two-lapper somewhere in the Holme Valley I assume.  Sounds like she won her category – top work!

Parkrun Corner

I just about mustered up the energy to look out of the window and frown at the weather on Saturday morning, but 24 Harriers were stood eagerly on the start line at Manor Park.  No new PBs but it looks like William Mather claimed his 50th run – nice work.  Rumour has it that he’s going to do the next 50 in one go.

It also looks like Joe Travis took the top spot at the Severn Valley Country parkrun – great running!

The consolidated club report is HERE

Top Mileage and climbing

Perhaps this should be renamed as “who got the most soaked this week”? Well the answer is Kirsty Sharp with 96.6km and Jenny Ross on the elevation taking on 3,990m!

Anything Else?

If you see any of the numerous Chester marathon entrants looking like they’re about to explode with energy then they’re obvious struggling with the taper as the race is only next weekend.  I dunno, perhaps give them a hug and feed them some pasta or something.

It’s also the Hodgeson Brothers Mountain Relays with the team raring to go (I think).

Tuesday: Run fast for a bit and have a rest, repeat.  Something like that will be happening on Tuesday, details from Coach Jeroen soon.

Thursday: Where is the best place to be at 7pm on a Thursday when it’s cold and dark? At the leisure centre of course so that you can do a club social run.  Let’s keep the numbers up during the winter months – be there!

Tim Budd appears to be conjuring up a winter time trial series, follow the Facebook thread for the latest.

It’s been a relatively quiet week for racing so did anything else happen? Lucy Wasinski  got whacked with a hockey ball and has a bruise, and then proceeded to get half of the Longdendale trail down her sock on Sunday morning.  Overall a succesful weekend!

Keep sending stuff in to gdhweeklyreports@gmail.com

 

 

“Load of Bullocks” Weekly Report

I was tempted to go with “Handful of Plums” for the weekly report title, but the Bullock had to win this time.  What an epic week with groups of Harriers all over the place taking on ultras, trail runs, fast road races and lugging sacks of coal up hills.  Here’s what happened!

The Bullock Smithy

The big one in the club champs this year, the Bullock Smithy is a 56-mile circular course starting and finishing in Hazel Grove.  This route has been well trodden by the Harriers, with so many recces popping up on Strava for the last few months, it was rumoured even Luke Holme wouldn’t get lost.  I tried to follow the tracker, but it was pretty hopeless so it was a good job there were some roving GDH reporters (Tracey and Lucy) deployed around the route to keep us up-to-date throughout the day.  Each runner will have their own story to tell on such a huge race, but here is Ian Crutchley’s take on events:

On the stroke of the anvil we set off at sub 8 minute mile pace (as you do on an ultra) and amusingly encountered the umpteen ideas of route variances within that first few miles. 9 times from 10 we ended up meeting the route in exactly the same place as your mate who swore the other way was shorter. Will moved ahead from the start, and by chinley churn Lance got sick of listening to us talk crap and moved ahead too. From here it was Skuse, Joe and me all the way.

To summarise the rest that I know of, Lins caught us up at Edale, looking very strong and we left her and Luke by Peak Forest still in fine fettle. With a few others Paul rescued a sheep at the top of cow low with an 8ft branch caught in its horns. We heard Nick had pulled out at CP1 with dizziness again. A real shame for the Bullock veteran. Lins and Pepper made it to Brand Top (39 miles) before deciding enough was enough. Luke pulled up at Cumberland Cottage (43 miles) with knee issues. Really felt for him, his second attempt at the Bullock. Paul and Joe got chased by cows in Earl Sterndale while I hurled abuse at them from the safety of the gate. We convinced a lad who was on the verge of quitting to continue as he’d made such good time. He stayed with us through 2 checkpoints then had an amazing second wind and buggered off ahead.

At walker barn (47 miles) we heard the record had gone with a Penny Lane lad doing 8.10, beating the previous by 35 minutes. Phenomenal. At this point our little band was in a sorry state. We knew Lance and Will had teamed up and were probably finished, and the rest were somewhere behind. We found the live tracker was all but useless, as it only listed runners by number, which is great when you know peoples number! We soldiered on and the last 5 miles or so we’re truly horrific with Joe making some extraordinary groaning noises and even Skuse struggling to remain cheery. The 3 of us got overtaken by a much older gentleman in the closing 500 metres, we literally had no answer for his surprise surge from behind. Each of the three of us had had difficult spells on the route, but we pulled each other through and largely enjoyed it I think. From what I can tell, the group of Kate, Marie, Rachel and John had a similar experience, generally pulling each other through. And I think that’s the story of the day for the full GDH team – teamwork.

We did a lot of recceing and sharing route options, kit and information. Will Mather was instrumental in this, and knows the route better than me now! Huge kudos to everyone that turned out, because this is a quirky event, requires a good element of nav, and is also a beast! Results below (I don’t know placings). I’m summary we all did fantastic. A few very unfortunate DNFs but most did as brilliantly as we expected. But for me, stand out performers were Lance (first ultra, and had the confidence to really go for it and finished in a brilliant time), Joe (almost no running for 6 weeks his training was, well, zero. Not in good shape but his ability to suffer was truly impressive). Steve France (another ultra virgin, and from what I can tell did most if it alone and you cannot wipe the smile off the lads face). Final thanks to any GDH that were out on route. Hugely appreciated!!!!

Will and Lance – 11.16

Paul, Joe and Ian – 13.17

Steve France – 15.12

Marie, Rachel, Kate and John 19.25

Padfield Plum Fair Scamper

There were no plums or a fair, but it was in Padfield.  Paul Skuse suggested he would run this, but then bailed, giving the most horrific excuse of why he wouldn’t be attending in a text group.  It’s not suitable for the report though, so let’s just say he was too tired.

I decided last minute to give this one a go and turned up in Padfield for one of Des’s classics.  Race strategies were bandied around which generally seemed to be “go hard at the start so you don’t have to queue at the stiles.”  As it turns out, when I got to the stiles I was kind of relieved to get a few seconds rest.  For those who don’t know, the route goes up and around the cabin beyond cock hill, back down to the trig and then back to Padfield.  No nonsense racing.

The results aren’t out yet, but broadly from Strava…

Steve Knowles (Pennine) TBC

Caitlin Rice (1st GDH and 1st woman) TBC

Chris Jackson (Pennine) 41:55

Daniel Stinton 43:28

Greg Wasinski 46:47

Rob Sheldon 49:16

Ian Oates 52:46

Frank Fielding 53:24

Mary Jeal TBC

Adam Crompton deserves a big shout-out for the junior race.  He took a tumble and injured his knee but pressed on ahead and finished the race anyway! Great running!

The first thing you need to do after a fell race is carry a sack of coal up a hill, right? That’s what Caitlin Rice did.  I’ve never personally carried a sack of coal up Redgate, but I’ve definitely felt like one whenever I’ve reached the top.  Sean Phillips also had a go but I don’t know what happened or what the results were, but here’s a pic from Facebook anyway.

Dark and White autumn series – Bradfield

I saw Lucy Wasinski after the plum fair race and she looked ever so relaxed.  You’d barely have known she’d run a race, let alone won it earlier that morning.  Here’s her report:

So in other news this weekend….!! Feeling rather lame in comparison, but suitably inspired by the BS crew Pete W, Pete T, Lynne T, Kate B and I headed over to Bradfield for the first in the Autumn trail series run by Dark and White. This was approx 9.5miles, and just under 400m ascent. Gorgeous clear start to the day which also meant given it’s Sept, you wanted your gloves on first thing brrrr!

We didn’t have long to worry that we might need our jackets on, as there’s a proper treat in store 50yds after the start….oh yes, greeted with a flight of stone steps to proper get the legs crying! 

After that it was a mix of a few lanes, some wooded trails, a bit of bracken bashing, bit of boggy rocky grassy stuff, a magical mystery tunnel amongst the rhododendron (was it?!) bushes where it helped if you were less than 4ft tall, and a long climb from the resers before the 10k mark and then pretty much all downhill to the finish. Which is the best bit…cos it means tea and cake and crisps. 

Brilliant fun and great company and so good to have more GDH doing these races! As skuse says, it’s all runnable! (Pretty much!)

Results when Lynne and Kate left as follows (starts in 10 min waves so results change as folk get back)

Lucy 1:17:32 – 9th and first female

Pete W1:28:20 – 25th

Pete T 1:33:39 – 32nd

Lynne&Kate 1:54:40

Salford 10km

A good turnout at the Salford 10km this morning.  Some FB pictures suggest half of the cast of Star Wars was there too.  Here are the results:

David Chrystie-Lowe 43:13

Mike Park 43:58

Joanne Brack 48:32

Tony Hillier 50:07

Wendy McMahon 50:29

Charmayne Brierley 51:49

Kaylea Haynes 51:44

Wioleta Wydrych 52:05

Malcolm Brown 59:16

William Mather 01:00:59

Laurie Barlow 01:10:22

Great North Run

A few people turned up for a half marathon somewhere in the north-east, not one I’d heard of, but it will probably catch on.  A chap called Mo said he had loads of time to spare after his race so sent over the GDH results:

Michael Greenhalgh 01:34:10

David Munday 02:42:35

Paul Amos 02:42:48

Liam Amos 02:44:33

Longstone Chase

Fell? Trail? I don’t know but here’s the report from Pete Wallroth:

Longstone Chase fell race was…..woah….hang on there a second!

That should read (as I’ve come to realise anything in this neck of the woods should ie Calver, Stoney Middleton, Barrell Inn et al ) trail race. 

Don’t get me wrong, it’s a good race, with cracking views but if you’d worn fell shoes for this, you’d have had bloody sore feet. It’s a trail race

Anyway, shut up you moaning git! 

This was a good one. All runnable, two fast descents, great views and a great final run in through a limestone gulley. A fast, fellless Friday. 

I was the only Harrier there due to the masses understandably preparing themselves for the madness that is the Bullock Smithy. 

Good to be out trying a new race this year as the midweek season more or less comes to an end for the Peak District fell running season. 

Marathon Du Medoc

It seems that Emma “Michelangelo” Rettig got drunk this weekend.  But rather than wait till finishing a race to celebrate she began celebrating from, well, checkpoint 1. A marathon is a long way under any circumstances, but if you have to dress up as a super hero and keep stopping for cheese and wine it becomes a gargantuan task! Here’s Emma’s report:

While most of the Club were taking in the delights of the Bullock on Saturday I opted for something a little different and ran the Marathon du Medoc

This utterly bonkers event takes place in the vineyards of the Medoc, participants must wear fancy dress and each Chateau lays out a wealth of treats to eat and glorious wine to drink

Three friends and I made it round in something resembling six and a half hours, rather squiffy but terribly happy. I’m not entirely sure what happened but we ate, drank, danced and made lots of friends. Some running must have occured but not entirely sure how!! 

Yorkshireman Off-road Marathon

I imagine this does what it says on the tin.  A marathon, off-road, likely in Yorkshire.  I just had a look at their website and the course record is 03:09:10 which seems awfully fast for a hilly off-roader.  Simon Watts gives us this report:

My third go at this great, friendly race that starts and finishes in the picturesque village of Howarth, just north of Halifax.

Time had healed my memories of how hard it was, so I felt pretty leggy after about 14miles having gone out too quick, but managed to come through in 10th overall. There’s about 900m of climbing with most of it is in the first 16 miles, giving you  great views of the valleys around Halifax.

Highly recommend this race for other Harriers next year…there is a steep cobbled street hill to finish on which you need to remember is there before you empty your legs! Only £20 too, a bargain!

Lakeland Trails Keswick 15km

Pictures don’t lie, right? Well John Pollard came 1st in the Lakeland Trails 15km in Keswick and there’s a picture of him on the podium to prove it!  Here’s his report:

What excellent events the Lakeland trails races are…a bit showbizzy compared to purists on the fells but definitely enjoyable, perhaps because they are not so brutal on the climbs.
The Keswick 15k yesterday was especially a gas, with sunshine, views, and a scintillating downhill last 2 miles.
Nice to meet Red Roser Steve Bullows, we made the podium…when it was unattended…

The Big Wet Coniston Freestyle Swim

Ok, I may have made that name up and I’m not sure if it was even an “event” but Tim Budd swam 5km along Coniston, splashing through the depths for 2.5 hours.  I generally feel like giving up after around 6 minutes of swimming so can’t even contemplate 2.5 hours! Epic stuff!

Parkrun Corner

A relatively quiet one at Glossop Parkrun this week, unsurprising with all of the other activity going on. Twelve Harriers running but no new PBs.  The consolidated club report is HERE

Top Mileage and climbing

Nothing surprising here with the Bullock Smithy entrants littering the top of the weekly Strava mileage table.  William Mather topped the chart with 117.2km but Jamie Helmer gave the hills a bash with 3,339m of climbing this week!

Anything Else?

It’s time to pretend you’re at school again and get your cross-country entries in.  It’s ridiculously cheap and you can use it as an excuse to buy a new pair of running trainers.  Check out the Facebook posts for details!

Tuesday.  Is Jeroen back? I don’t know, but there will be a speed session!  People will run in the hills and on the road on Thursday.  Business as usual folks.

There may be a few inaccuracies in the report above of course, but I’m not going to prorogue the weekly report, just let us know in the comments.  Keep sending stuff in to gdhweeklyreports@gmail.com

 

 

 

 

The “Wettest Tuesday in Coached Session History” Weekly Report

That’s right.  Tuesday was the wettest coached session ever! Excuses were handed in to coach Jeroen on the Facebook page one after another, but still many brave souls turned up to bash out a speed session!  Just one of the myriad of things happening to the Harriers this week, but before we get into all of that, let’s talk club champs!

It’s Cracken Edge on Wednesday, the seventh of ten fell race counters.  I ran this as a recce once and I seem to remember a steep slippy concrete bit towards the end, which probably isn’t the best bit, but other than that it was a great route! Get out there and get the points in!

Without further ado, here is the report!

Jersey: Round the Rock Ultra

Jersey, tiny isn’t it?  I mean, you can barely even see it on a map.  That may be the case until you decide to run around it, and then suddenly it becomes huge.  Kate Bowden ran the “Round the Rock” ultramarathon: a 48-mile jaunt around the coastline of Jersey.  I’ve heard you can do this as a relay team, but who wants to end up halfway round Jersey waiting to see if a bus turns up?  Kate obviously didn’t and looking at Strava got round in under 11 hours – epic running!

Chunal Fell Race

Paul Skuse is like a jack-in-the-box at the moment.  The merest whisper of a race and his head springs into view, bouncing around rallying the Glossopdale army to get out there and win some races!  Here’s his report on the Chunal Fell Race:

I don’t like this race and this race doesn’t like me. The weather wasn’t as bad as expected, the race seemed to fit perfectly between very heavy downpours (didn’t help me much, I was sodden running over to the start). This brief dry spell didn’t do much to help conditions underfoot though and traction came more from tussocks and reeds wrapping themselves around shoes and shins. It was a bushwhacky, bog trotty, uppy & downy and almost no running kind of race. It was almost Lantern Pike-esque in the uppy & downy parts but spread over several sections. Only two GDH’s were racing (with the ever cheerful Jo Brack helping Des at registration). This was a blessing as there were fewer people to see my woeful efforts on the descents. Get a bell and cry “Shame!” when you see me pass. Mark D, Ben N, Immy and a whole host of GDH real fell runners would have done well in the small field of racers. No idea about results as I had to run home to miss the next downpour.

York 10km

A fast and flat course passing loads of the city’s historic gems.  What’s not to like? Paul Amos ran the 10km today and whilst I don’t have an official report Strava tells me it was hot.  Great work Paul!

Turner Landscape Fell Run

John Pollard was in the Lake District again this weekend taking on the Turner Landscape Fell Run.  He gives us the full tale below:

Recommended to do this by a few folk including Chris Jackson, and glad I did as it’s a great route and though tough with a 1000 metre of climbing to 6 different summits on a muggy 25C day, it was the most memorable and doable race I’ve done since trying to get back to the fells.

Made even more enjoyable by bumping into a frisky Andrew Fox sometime of this parish, just before the start. Andy reminded me the last time we locked horns was also in the Lakes at a Hodgson relay, but that could’ve been almost 20 years ago…and we still instantly recognised each other’s grizzled features of course.

Didn’t see Andy again until after the prize-giving, he’s a lean machine, running like a man who’s been intensively hiking the Alps (he has)…while Andy was changing in his campervan Post-race I stumbled over to hear..”1st v60, Andy Fox of GDH”. Nice medal and socks, and nice work Andy.

Think he was back in 2hrs 6..only 44 minutes ahead of me! But I ran ok and was not last for a change. The first climb up to Grey Friars after the fields from Turner Hall farm was pretty attritional in the fierce sun, a midday start meaning the mad dogs were let loose as the heat began to flare. 3 and a half miles to there up past Seathwaite tarn was the longest climb of the day, and sheltered from what westerly breeze there was it proved a sweatfest.

Followed by a good mile track up to Swirl How CP2, mercifully missing Prison Band, but also foregoing the lovely, expansive views in favour of getting my head down, then a wee pull onto Brim Fell before the steeper 1/2 mile climb to The Old Man CP3, where it was best to contour below the ridge line to avoid the tourist hordes enjoying their Saturday stroll. But nice to hear some encouraging comments, so often it’s the loneliness of the long distance fell runner which is both the pleasure and the challenge of the adventure. (There’s a book & film there somewhere.) No chance of solitude on a sunny August Saturday.

Retracing from the Old Man, it was a cut across to Goat’s Hause on awkward terrain but missing the stonier path, and then an inevitably rocky ascent of Dow Crag CP4, past the climbers, who were ascending at my rate. (I exaggerate).

I caught up a group of female runners on the easy 1/2 mile track to Brown Pike partly as I can descend many times better than I climb, and partly due to them somehow taking a wrong line off the Old Man. Then it was down to cross dusty Walna Scar Road for a trod along to White Pike CP5, a top I’d never scaled, and was relieved to find we were going up the shallow side and descending the steep side, as I was tiring now.

Finally, back to Walna Scar Road again- CP6, and on the grassy descent I picked up a couple more places and it was judderingly fast downhill for much of the rest over a mix of bog, grass and rocks to the welcome sight of the flagged finish.

That’s the route, and well worth a trip up, maybe next year some more Glossopdalers will have a crack at it. Nice atmosphere, based as it is in the sumptuous Duddon Valley, with essential tea and cakes to follow. I assumed it was called Turner Landscape for artistic reasons, but it’s run from Turner Hall Farm, so maybe not.

Just a shame you have to drive up the narrow Seathwaite road, avoiding the huge Range Rovers &MPVs exploring the valley or going over to Eskdale on the Hardknott Pass. But I guess we all leave a carbon footprint.

Hong Kong Hash Running

Hash and running were two words I’d never put together, but it is actually a thing, and not in a “let’s sit down and talk about how cool running is” kind of way.  It appears to be some kind of group trail run where the group try and find the route which may include short cuts and dead ends with lots of looping back to work out the route.  I don’t really know to be honest, but it sounds pretty sounds interesting! Emma Peters reports from Asia:

For those of you who don’t know, I have spent the past 2 months in Mongolian hospitals on elective placement as part of my university degree. Since hearing that I was going to Asia, Jeroen put me in contact with Rachel Sproston (a Harrier who lives in Hong Kong).

My friends and I met up with Rachel and her parter Mike and friend Mitch when they were also in Mongolia, where Rachel invited us on a Hash House Harriers run in Hong Kong.

Today my friend Emma and I went on one of these famed Hash runs on Lamma Island, where we had a lot of fun and were made to feel incredibly welcome.  We ran for around 8km along a marked trail including dead ends and checkpoints to keep fast runners looping back and therefore keep the group a bit more together. We then also had a few drinks and a lovely meal out. I just want to thank Rachel for the invite and encourage other harriers to always make the most of the surprisingly global network that we have here at GDH.

Long Mynd

Not satisfied with the hills here, Zoe Barton and Rachel Walton took a trip to Shropshire and sent in this report: 

Me and Dr Walton did a little Long Mynd excursion on Saturday. We were camping in the area and it’d have been rude not to. Plenty of wimberry picking and admirage of views. Oh and I found a farmyard bog to sink into. 

 

Prudential Ride London

Ok, ok, this isn’t about running, but when I reviewed the official “Glossopdale Harriers Report Writing Manual” I discovered that covering other sports isn’t banned, other than chapter 8, paragraph 17c) which restricts any mention of mud-wrestling.  Apparently, this is because of something that happened in 2002, but no-one who was around at the time is willing to talk about it.

Mandy Beames was in our Capital this weekend on the 100-mile closed road sportif – the Prudential Ride London.  I’m not sure on the outcome but the tracker shows 86 miles, let’s hope  it all went well!

Brompton World Championships

I’d also taken the torturous trip down the M1 to take part in another part of the Ride London festivities.  I’d managed to get a place in the Brompton World Championships – not by any cycling skill of course, but through a reserve ballot.  You have to do a short sprint, unfold your bike and then do 8 laps of the 2km course as fast as you can.  Lycra is banned and a suit jacket, collar and tie is compulsory – so it’s all very serious!

Don’t be fooled though, there was some serious racers here and it turned into quite an adrenaline fuelled half-hour (hot work in a wool suit jacket).  I absolutely loved jostling and weaving around the course and when the elites comes whizzing past at breakneck speed it was very exhilarating!!  I have no idea of the results but the race is over when the first person finishes and I think I managed 7 of the 8 laps in around 27 minutes. Who needs hills and the countryside eh? (me, me, me!)

Parkrun Corner

A good turnout at our parkrun this week with 14 Harriers running and Kirsty Marie Sharp the first harrier home.  Check out the consolidate club report HERE

Many of you will have noticed a couple of our very own Harriers featured on the main parkrun page advertising the milestone t-shirts.  Fantastic to see Harriers and Glossop taking a spot on the main stage!

Whilst we’re talking about loops around Manor Park, now seems like the ideal moment to mention the Manor Park Marathon (#MPM) on Saturday 24th August along with its big brother, the Ultra Trail Manor Park (#UTMP).  It’s all a bit of fun, so come along and do as many laps as you feel like before the parkrun!

To claim a coveted MPM title you need to complete 27 laps (including parkrun), just let me know your exact start time and number of laps and I’ll juggle it all into some kind of “official” results.  It would be great to see a load of blue and orange scattered around the park all morning!  Whilst most people’s first reaction is that this sounds horrible, official exit polls last year confirmed that an unconfirmed percentage of runners didn’t not feel like it wasn’t something they would maybe never not do again.  So there you go.

Top Mileage and climbing

As of 19:20 Sunday, Tony Hillier takes the top spot bagging 89km, but it also looks like someone has measured Chris Jackson who is officially 3,890m.  Or maybe that’s the elevation he took on this week, who knows?

Anything Else?

There will be a (probably drier) session on Tuesday with Jeroen and a run into the hills or around Glossop on Thursday and don’t forget Cracken Edge on Wednesday!  For something different, let’s finish with a caption competition!  WiIliam Mather found something unusual in the hills this week and here it is! Captions in the Facebook comments please! (this is only a test to see if anyone reads to the end of this report!)

As ever, if something is missed then let us know in the Facebook comments and keep sending in your Harrier shenanigans to gdhweeklyreports@gmail.com

“If only that was the last of the rain” Weekly Report

Nowadays you don’t need to wait for Michael Fish’s weather report, you just have a scroll through Strava.  From the titles I can reliably inform everyone that it’s been a warm one, sunny, humid and in some cases brutal.  Of course though, now it seems to be raining again…

Here’s the weekly report.

Kinder Trog

Don’t have a fight with rocks on Kinder.  That’s the take-home message from the Kinder Trog today.  Immy Trinder (who found out the hard way) gives us this report:

GDH lineup for Kinder Trog was John S, Jo B, Alison H, Charmayne B, Matt C, Dan S and myself. It was nothing if not an eventful day. Dan and I chugged round together, and it was all going well until we were heading towards the Downfall where I decided it was a good time to have a fight with the floor. Following a moment of bemusement I worked out how to peel myself off the gritstone, shouted at Dan for trying to help me (classic, sorry Dan) and after a wobbly-bottom-lip moment and being overtaken by Matt, we cracked on. It has been suggested that I might call this kind of a disagreement with the floor a ‘John Stephenson’, although as far as I’m aware he managed to stay on his feet today for the duration!

It was lovely to see Tracey R, Cecil and Mark D out on route. It was especially nice to see Marco’s big box of Haribo! Meanwhile, Matt had a hot date with a PB but unfortunately it wasn’t to be, as we discovered when we caught him up in the final few kilometres. A knee problem, which had something to do with a gate that I didn’t quite grasp, was to blame.

Alison had a great race and put her HPM demons to rest. She encountered a minor nav mishap but got round without fighting any inanimate objects. Jo, Charm and John ran together, the report from Jo being that they ‘all enjoyed it but it was bloomin’ hard work!”

Fight for 1st GDH came down to a sprint finish between Dan and myself, which I won, although I’m pretty sure if it hadn’t been for the variety of mitigating circumstances including Matt’s knee, and Dan sticking with me after my face-plant, it might have been very different!

I knew I didn’t stand a chance on a sprint finish with Immy but it made it quite an exciting ending in around 2:44.  The results don’t seem to be out yet so we’ll get them posted on the facebook page.  Great local long racing…. well done all!

(Also to add Chris Jackson and Frank Fielding were out there for Pennine)

Buttermere Horseshoe

The Lakeland Classics Trophy started back in 2002 and has grown ever since.  It covers six classic Lakeland races and the best three performances count. Chris Webb took on the Buttermere horseshoe and sent in the report below:

Tim Culshaw and I headed up to Loweswater on a glorious day to run the Buttermere Horseshoe fell race. At 22miles/9000ft it’s statistically the toughest of the Lakeland Classics and the heat spiced it up even more this year. Finlay Wild turned up so the winner was never in doubt (he broke the course record I believe, unsurprisingly) but for the rest of us we were trying to get round without the wheels coming off!

I was going well until Haystacks when a nav error cost me a few mins; that combined with the sun really beating down at that point made for hard going over Red Pike and High Stile. I rallied on the descent of Scale Force (despite another minor nav error) and managed to climb Mellbreak without too much suffering.

Tim meanwhile was smug with his controlled effort early on, “feeling great” he said over Grasmoor. It’s still early in the race though and he had his fair share of suffering and minor nav mishaps on the way back. Still, with Edith only 3 weeks old and off the back of very little sleep Tim finished strong, storming past the Kirkstile Inn beer garden like a man possessed! I can highly recommend this race for anyone wanting a long, challenge fell race on a beautiful route.

Final results:

Chris Webb: 12th in 4hrs 51mins

Tim Culshaw: 27th in 5hrs 29mins

The Spine Flare

The summer version of the Spine Challenger (108 miles) is happening right now.  I’ve just looked at the tracker and Sue Clapham finished in 36:04:04.  I don’t have any details, but absolutely epic running – I hope we can hear all about it!

A Trio of 10kms

Why just run one race in a week, when you can do three?  John Pollard took on Marple, the Hawkshead 10km and the Shirgley Stag fell race, and tells us below how it went.  It seems Lance Hamilton-Griffiths also made an appearance:

To complete a trio of 10k races in 7 days, starting with Marple trail on Sunday, I first ran the Hawkshead 10k road race around pretty little Esthwaite Water in the heart of the Lakes on a gorgeous Wednesday evening.

Now I did intend to do the Langstrath fell race in Borrowdale (honest guv) but didn’t leave enough time to drive down the valley, a pity as it’s the most beautiful route up to Watendlath tarn, but I thought I’d let Ricky Lightfoot win that for the umpteenth time.

So instead I mingled among the assorted Kendal AAC & Eden road runners to do what is truthfully quite a tedious undulating metalled loop, views notwithstanding, around Esthwaite. Good hard running though and getting me fit to finish in 51.02, with a burger and beer reward provided by the slightly chaotic organisers in Hawkshead afterwards.

That was a road and trail completed and on Saturday afternoon it was the Fell run, a new race at Pott Shrigley, tucked away by Shrigley Hall in the local village Rose Queen fete.

Charming Cheshire. A varied route, supposedly 10 k, pretty much all runnable, touching on Lyme Park at the Bow Stones and the most enjoyable run of the week.

I was short of concentration on one downhill section in the woods and went a*** over t*t, a reminder not to be so careless…but felt I ran ok to finish 3rd v60 in 57.25.

Lance Hamilton-Griffiths appears to have finished about 36th in 47.12 but I didn’t catch sight of him at that pace. Well ran sir.

Whether this all means I’m going to have the stamina for next week’s Ambleside trail half marathon I’ll have to see.

Kingsway Track 5km

Rochdale? What happens there? I have no idea usually, but earlier in the week Immy Trinder and I attended a chip-timed track 5km at the Kingsway track.  It seems to be a collaboration set up by the Rochdale Triathlon Club, Royton Road Runners and Rochdale Harriers.  There are three separate races (sub-20, 20-25min, 25+mins) and a junior 2km.

I somehow managed a PB of 18:43 and Immy came over the line in 20:30.

It costs £4, you get a print-out of all your lap times and you get to feel like a proper athlete for a bit – highly recommended!

Colshaw 10km

Alex Critcher provided an in-depth review of the Colshaw 10km on Stava.  How was it Alex?

“Awful”.  So, there you go.

Parkrun Corner

A load of Harriers enjoying a warm Parkrun yesterday with 17 on the start line.  Caitlin Rice was first GDH followed by Sean Phillips.  Perusing Strava it looks Sean did an extensive warm-up of 18-19kms, nothing quite like getting the legs ready for a Parkrun, eh?

Luke Holme, probably powered by a vampire-bite from T100, bagged a PB at 20:34.  No other PBs from GDH at the home course, but David Christie-Lowe is just two runs away from the 250 milestone.  Top running!

Check out the consolidate club report HERE

Top Mileage and Climbing

Who has been out there grinding out the miles and powering up those hills?  On the GDH Strava group, this week Steve Knight has clocked up an impressive 91.8km but Jenny Ross takes the elevation crown with a whopping 5,278m.

Anything Else?

As is the Harriers tradition there was a summer solstice run out into our lovely hills.  With fast-paced and busy lives getting out into the hills is always a joy, but this one has the added benefit of whisky.  A perfect time to enjoy our magnificent local playground and think about our friends old and new.

There has, of course, been a Tuesday speed session and a Thursday fell run, but it also looked like a splinter group set-out to run loops around the reservoirs.  We all know what that means! That’s right, it’s “Round the Resers” on Wednesday! This year the race will be supporting Tinttwistle Children’s Gala, a local charity providing activities for young people in the community.  I’m sure a good bunch of the blue and orange army will be there!

Guy Riddell is beating the drum for the Chester Marathon in October – get your entires in!  Chatter of Bullock Smithy recces seems to be all over the place.  The Manor Park Marathon looks likely to be happening on August Bank Holiday… I’ve spotted a recce of “Lakes in a Day” out there on Strava – have fun on that one!  Basically, it’s all going on Harriers!

That’s all i’ve spotted or been sent this week – if there’s anything missing then please let us know what happened in the Facebook comments!

Keep flinging the reports and pictures in to the GDH report-writing-crew at gdhweeklyreports@gmail.com