Nov 222014

Sen and Vet Women

132         35:37     Heidi Swaffield
164         36:23     Mandy Herworth (Med pack)
201         37:36     Nina Jensen
205         37:54     Colette Byrne
241         39:15     Michelle Nesbit-Burrell
253         39:54     Julie Dumpleton
298         42:34     Elaine Henderson

Sen and Vet Men

149         44:36     Jonathan Gilroy (Med pack)
167         45:02     Jeremy Smith
231         46:35     Chris Jones
346         50:18     Roberto Marzo
467         54:45     Howard Maclennan

Full results here.

 November 22, 2014  Posted by at 8:10 pm Cross Country, North East Harrier League, Results No Responses »
Nov 222014

Newcastle parkrun:

19:49   Luke Jones
20:05   Gordon Macfadyen
20:17   Tom Tinsley
22:16   Richard Slack
22:23   Mungai Wairia
23:52   Luke Woodend
25:07   Dave Kear

Gateshead parkrun:

29:12   Dave Manners

Norwich parkrun:

22:57   Ben Hull – Free, timed, 5k runs every Saturday 9am

 November 22, 2014  Posted by at 4:30 pm Results No Responses »
Nov 162014

Leeds Abbey Dash 10k:

470         36:47     Jonathan Gilroy   PB

Full results here.

Brampton to Carlisle 10M:

116         1:03:34  Matthew Kingston
136         1:04:48  Paul Robinson
187         1:07:27  Heather Steel
360         1:16:32  Richard Slack
584         1:34:08  Marie Slack

Full results here.

 November 16, 2014  Posted by at 6:21 pm Results No Responses »
Nov 152014

I’ve done a bit more parkrun tourism over the past few weeks and I’ve now completed all the North East parkruns. Here’s a short review:

Fastest: Hartlepool

Pan flat out and back on tarmac along the promenade. Like any coastal parkrun, it can get very windy but the first half of the course is run along a sea wall so it’s fairly sheltered from the wind. Unfortunately, this is where I fractured my leg and is my slowest parkrun to date!

Hilliest: Gibside

The course is basically one big hill. An out and back on gravel. Up for the first half and back down again. Beware of the false summit! When you get to what looks like the top, there’s a dip and short climb before you turn around.

Toughest: Blackhill

‘Tough’ is pretty subjective. Some people find hills tough while for others, it depends on conditions or the layout of the course. Newcastle is very exposed and Redcar is convoluted with many turns. Although Gibside has a higher elevation gain, I find Blackhill to be the toughest overall. It’s one big lap up a gradual but long hill followed by three shorter laps with some short steep hills. The laps and undulations make this tougher than Gibside.

Most Scenic: South Shields

Any course with a view of the sea gets my vote as prettiest. When I did it, the course started on the promenade, headed out along the cliff top trails, and back down the final mile of the Great North Run. It’s now run in the reverse direction which arguably makes it faster than Hartlepool as it’s all downhill. But it’s also on trail and very exposed.

Biggest and Smallest: Newcastle and Hackworth

Obviously, this category isn’t static but for now, Newcastle averages over 400 runners while Hackworth gets around 25.

Best facilities: Stewart Park, Middlesbrough and Sedgefield

Both parkruns have ample parking, clean toilets, and a café near the finish (opening before the run starts) where you can also leave your belongings. Unfortunately, neither one does a Full English!

Best overall: Tees Barrage

Excluding Newcastle, because it’s my home run, Tees Barrage is my favorite in the North East. The course is one lap on tarmac (I hate laps!) along both banks of the River Tees, goes over two (and under one) bridges and you get great views of the runners ahead of and behind you. It’s by no means a fast course; there are a few twists and turns on the bridges and along a couple of inlets and stairs to climb on one bridge. It ticks all the boxes for me – one lap, interesting and varied course and a decent cafe at the finish.

 November 15, 2014  Posted by at 4:49 pm Race Reports No Responses »
Nov 152014

Newcastle parkrun:

18:51   Luke Jones
19:31   Jeremy Smith
20:16   Matthew Kingston
21:10   Charlotte Spencer   PB
22:49   Heidi Swaffield
23:51   Luke Woodend
24:22   Dave Kear
24:46   Mary Martin
25:10   Julie Dumpleton
25:24   Robert Brand
26:18   Elaine Henderson   PB

Hackworth parkrun:

19:52   Sumanth Nayak – Free, timed, 5k runs every Saturday 9am

 November 15, 2014  Posted by at 4:48 pm Results No Responses »
Nov 092014

Heaton Harriers Memorial 10k:

71           38:44     Jeremy Smith
91           39:30     Matthew Kingston
118         40:47     Sumanth Nayak
289         46:47     Jess Langley
356         49:50     Kenny McCormick
362         50:14     John Bell
521         60:17     Karen Williamson

Full results here.

Mo Run Newcastle 5k:

11           24:37     Mary Martin
19           26:01     Marie Slack

Mo Run

 November 9, 2014  Posted by at 1:43 pm Results No Responses »
Nov 082014

Newcastle parkrun:

19:25   Luke Jones
19:33   Jeremy Smith
19:58   Paul Robinson
19:58   Heather Steel   PB
19:59   Gordon Macfadyen
23:02   Heidi Swaffield
25:30   Dave Kear
27:42   Elaine Henderson   PB
27:45   Leanne Salem   PB
28:20   Yincent Tse

Gateshead parkrun:

28:15   Dave Manners

Braunstone parkrun:

26:15   Robert Brand

Sunderland parkrun:

21:18   Catherine Young

Stewart parkrun, Middlesbrough:

21:37   Sumanth Nayak

St Helens parkrun:

20:19   Tom Tinsley – Free, timed, 5k runs every Saturday 9am

 November 8, 2014  Posted by at 5:45 pm Results No Responses »
Nov 032014

Newcastle Town Moor Marathon:

13        3:28:22            Adrian Conlin
20        3:36:08            Sumanth Nayak
25        3:51:01            David Devennie
40        4:08:40            Robert Brand

We were blessed with some fantastic weather for this race, the highlight of the North East racing calendar. A bit windy maybe, but on the Town Moor, that’s nothing new. Huge thanks to all the Claremonters who manned the water stations and for the awesome support; especially to Jeremy Smith who ran with me on the final lap just as I was debating whether to take a walk break. It certainly made it that much more bearable. Although, I think he’ll agree that if I had talked less and concentrated my energy on running, I would have done a better time!

 November 3, 2014  Posted by at 7:57 am Results No Responses »
Nov 022014

The Great South Run, the Great North Run’s younger sibling, celebrated its 25th running on the 26th October 2014 and two Claremont Road Runners were there to join in the fun – myself and Chris Jones.  I really like this run and I’d done it twice before but it was a debut for local lad Chris.

It is a flat, 10 mile run that starts and finishes on the sea front in Southsea, Portsmouth.  Gill and I have friends in the area but stay in a lovely guest house that we know about 10 minutes walk from the start line.  So the plan was for a light, early breakfast, get ready, stroll down to the sea front, meet our friends and join the 25,000 other runners in time for the start.  However the day didn’t start well – at 07:30 am I was sitting in our room having a nose bleed (I’m prone to them every winter and they had started during the week, but this was the worst yet!).  However I was ready to go for breakfast half an hour later.  I don’t like eating much before running but settled for fruit, porridge and toast – the toast was a mistake!

We met our friends at the sea front, the weather was fine but there was a fairly stiff breeze coming off the sea.  Despite exchanging texts and messages, Chris and I managed to miss each other, so I had lost my pacemaker.  Standing at the start, I wasn’t feeling very positive.  My head felt bunged up and I wasn’t convinced that breakfast had settled, but tried to convince myself that my legs were fine and I would be OK once I started.

The start isn’t quite as crowded as in the North Run and the entusiastic crowds along the promenade mean that you are soon into your stride.  The course then leaves the sea and goes through Portsmouth Old Town, past the Cathedral and then we head towards the Historic Dockyard.  I was now feeling fine and about 10-12 minutes into the run, I heard a few cries of “Go on, Iwan”, “Well done, Iwan” etc and noticed that I was immediately behind Iwan Thomas.  He was chatting away to his friend, talking about times of other runs they had done together but as he was saying 44 minutes for a 10K, I thought “He’s slower than me!” and overtook.

The course now enters the Historic Dockyard, past HMS Warrior, the Victory and the Mary Rose (though you can’t see the Mary Rose) before turning onto the streets and a section up and down each side of a dual carriageway.  As I was just starting on the “up” side, I saw a Tyne Bridge vest coming down the other side, obviously very high up the field.  With a sudden feeling that there should be solidarity between North East runners on the South Coast, I shouted “Go, Tyne Bridge” but don’t think he heard me.  Our other friends were at the 4 mile marker and I was feeling good enough to smile and wave – it wouldn’t last!

The run now heads back towards the start and finish area, but passes on the road the other side of Southsea Common.  This stretch of the course is packed with spectators from 5 to 7 miles.  It then heads out through the residential area of Eastney and although the crowds are thinner, the local residents give great support, one house had Status Quo blasting out as I passed to provide a mini “boost zone”.    I was starting to feel tired and knew that the last 2 miles along the sea front would be into the wind, so I was trying to keep it steady.

Just after the 8 mile marker, the course is back on the sea front.  Last time I ran, I loved this section even though there are very few spectators as I like looking out to sea, but this year I started to struggle as we were running into a headwind.  I was still bunged up and was finding it harder to keep my breathing right, then shortly before the 9 mile marker I suddenly thought I was going to be sick.  The toast was fighting back!  I forced myself to slow for a bit, took deep breaths and gradually got going again and even kicked on a bit.  The 15k sign was a very welcome sight, and I was pleased to get back into the well supported area as that meant the the finish line was close, though I was now running on will power.  I’ve never possessed a fast finish, but the last 400m were slow even by my standards and it was a great relief to cross the finish line just under my target of 70 minutes.  As soon as I crossed the line, I was retching again and took a few minutes to gather myself before heading through the funnel for the t-shirts, medal and goodie bag.

In the finish zone, I finally met Chris.  He’d really enjoyed his first South Run and looked much better than I felt.  We compared times on our watches which had me ahead by 1 second, though the published results gave me a 6 second advantage.  The difference was that Chris had run very steady 7 minute miles, whereas my first 5 miles all started with 6 but the last 5 all started with 7 and the very last one was nearer 8 minutes.

I met our friends again and we waited for my wife to come in.  Gill doesn’t consider herself a runner and doesn’t normally like going further than a parkrun, but she came home in 1 hour 35 minutes, fully 12 minutes faster than her previous time in the same race.  This was a much better achievement than my time and cheered me up no end.

Although this year wasn’t my most enjoyable running experience, I would fully recommend the Great South Run.  It is an interesting course in a great location with fantastic support from the locals.  It is also flat and more than 3 miles shorter than the GNR!  I think that it has a more relaxed, friendlier feel than the North Run and dare I say that I prefer it.  It is a long way from home, but if you fancy a bit of running tourism then you could do a lot worse than have a weekend in Southsea.  I’m sure that both Chris and I will be back.

 November 2, 2014  Posted by at 10:55 pm Race Reports No Responses »
Nov 012014

Newcastle parkrun:

19:20   Paul Robinson
19:37   Jeremy Smith
20:11   Heather Steel   PB
20:17   Gordon Macfadyen
21:34   Roberto Marzo
21:43   Lukas Mejstrik
22:09   Richard Slack
23:27   Jess Langley
25:10   Dave Kear
25:28   Mary Martin
26:47   Marie Slack

Gateshead parkrun:

21:10   Catherine Young

Druridge Bay parkrun:

22:49   Sumanth Nayak – Free, timed, 5k runs every Saturday 9am

 November 1, 2014  Posted by at 4:20 pm Results No Responses »