Aug 282017

By Richard Slack

I’m still not sure what I was doing in the registration and coach pick-up from St Bees School at 6am on an August Saturday morning. Sure I had taken part in a couple of the Claremont 35 outings managing a modest 20 miles or so on the latest one, but that was by far the farthest I had ever run, or even contemplated running. Here I now was surrounded by ultra runners and about to get on a coach to take me to Dodd Wood, and St Bega’s church Bassenthwaite, some 35 miles (actually 37) away to then run back. How did this madness come about?

As many will know a number of the Claremont Ladies (Nina, Julie, Marie, Mary, Michelle with Elaine and Collette) recently completed the Lakeland 55k and in 2016 Marie had supported Nina, Julie, Mary and Elaine on their SBU. With this historical backdrop Marie announced that she would like to do the SBU in 2017 and I asked if we do it together? Marie had the ultra experience of our team and I had decent navigational skills through the Lakeland terrain.

What ensued was simply one of the best days out we have had! The weather was kind throughout the day with light winds, high cloud and occasional sunny spells, ideal for a long run. The first stage (11 miles) headed south from Dodd Wood crossing open countryside to the Lakeshore path along Derwent Water. We then headed into Grange before following the Allerdale Ramble route through Borrowdale to the first checkpoint at Rosthwaite. This initial stage taught me two things: one, you simply have to keep moving at all times and secondly the old mantra of walk all the ups and then maintain a steady jog/run on the flat and downs.

After a refuel at Rosthwaite we then headed into the heart of Lakeland and a simply staggering, although a great deal more challenging, second stage (another 11 miles) to Ennerdale. The route headed up bridleway towards and then up Honistor pass to the Honistor slate mine. Passing through the slate mine we then kept uphill on the mine road before emerging out onto Gillercomb with Great Gable and Pillar now in clear view. Traversing round we then descended a delightful, although steep and knee jarring, rock staircase parallel to Loft Beck to reach Black Sail youth hostel. A four-mile jog along the valley path saw us reach Checkpoint 2 at Ennerdale youth hostel. What was noticeable by this point is what seemed like an easy jog on Leg 1 was now becoming a bit more challenging. However the more serious joggin (no G and courtesy of Steve Wright) meant getting to the finish!

So off we headed on stage 3 (another 11 miler), passing along the lakeshore of Ennerdale before heading inland to the final key ascent of the route. Whilst Wainwright describes Dent Fell as “a pleasant walk” on an ultra it is anything but with a seemingly never-ending steep ascent and perhaps summed up by its more common name of Bummer’s Hill. However, the views of the Cumbrian fells looking east and the coastal plane to the West was magnificent. All that was then needed was a quick descent into Cleator Moor to Checkpoint 3.

The final stage of 4.3 miles used mainly cycle paths initially and then over open countryside with St Bees and the tower of St Bega’s church coming into view. The finish is on the former playing fields of St Bees School. Finishing together was a huge and very proud moment. Thanks to Marie for this epic adventure. Naturally celebratory beer followed along with a hot meal – both as part of the SBU.

Throughout, the marshals were superb and friendly, the checkpoints relaxing and well stocked on food and pop and the overall race organisation simply excellent with a brilliant route-finder guide detailing each stage.


Richard and Marie both 10 hours and 53 minutes.

 August 28, 2017  Posted by at 10:38 am Race Reports No Responses »
Aug 272017

Newcastle parkrun:

20:11   Anthony Liddle
21:56   Mungai Wairia
23:15   Roberto Marzo
23:20   Lucy Dunbar
23:30   Paul Hughes
24:29   John Grimshaw
24:32   Chris Carr
30:45   Gillian Milne

Gateshead parkrun:

19:27   Paul Robinson
21:29   David Lydall
27:39   Rose Hawkswood

Rising Sun parkrun:

25:20   Daisy Martin

Fell Foot parkrun, Newby Bridge:

23:54   David Devennie

Abingdon parkrun:

30:11   Dave Manners

Ormeau parkrun:

22:39   Heidi Swaffield – Free, timed, 5k runs every Saturday 9am

 August 27, 2017  Posted by at 7:04 am Results No Responses »
Aug 242017

Quayside 5k, 23rd August:

18:54     Sumanth Nayak
20:41     Mungai Wairia   3rd M60
20:51     Arthur Liu
21:19     Matthew Diment
22:02     Lucy Dunbar
22:16     Howard MacLennan
22:38     Luke Woodend

 August 24, 2017  Posted by at 8:13 am Results No Responses »
Aug 202017

Newcastle parkrun:

19:40   Anthony Liddle
19:46   Roberto Marzo
20:31   Mungai Wairia
22:50   Heidi Swaffield
23:12   John Grimshaw
23:49   Brian Hegarty
26:46   Rose Hawkswood

Gateshead parkrun:

20:36   Catherine Young
31:47   Dave Manners

St Helens parkrun:

20:07   Tom Tinsley

Shepton Mallet parkrun:

21:09   Robyn Wynn

Cleethorpes parkrun:

22:33   Luke Woodend

Kesgrave parkrun:

25:16   Daisy Martin – Free, timed, 5k runs every Saturday 9am

 August 20, 2017  Posted by at 6:53 am Results No Responses »
Aug 142017

By Richard Slack

After spending a week at the IAAF world athletics, Richard and Marie ran the London Summer 10k, based in Regent’s Park. Sunday morning was greeted with glorious weather of blue sky and a gentle breeze – lovely for the viewed of this stunning park although maybe a bit warm for running but plenty of shade through the park. The run is a 3 lapper, and predominantly flat, running past the Lake, then up the central boulevard before a dogleg loop leading past the London zoo and then returning to the start/finish line. A beautiful royal park to run around which was well marshalled throughout. The run itself was relatively low key, although with a good selection of club runners, with only around 400 entrants which may well be limited as rather like a parkrun it was on shared paths through the entire route. Very enjoyable end to a superb week with the final night of athletics and the 4x400m relays to now look forward to.

Richard 49.00
Marie 56.55

 August 14, 2017  Posted by at 8:39 am Race Reports No Responses »
Aug 142017

Veteran and Mixed Teams

37:19 Alasdair Wilson-Craw 12:06 Rose Hawkswood 13:59 Anthony Liddle 11:14
42:12 Alice Vialard 14:47 Nina Jensen 13:53 Jane Evans 13:32
43:07 Howard MacLennan 12:58 Ken McCormick 15:17 Dave Kear 14:52
46:32 Serpil Bulut 15:58 Julie Dumpleton 14:45 Mary Martin 15:49

 August 14, 2017  Posted by at 8:34 am Results No Responses »
Aug 132017

Newcastle parkrun:

19:18   Roberto Marzo
19:39   Anthony Liddle
21:01   Mungai Wairia
22:15   Matthew Diment
24:00   Heidi Swaffield
24:31   Alan Dunning
25:43   Dave Kear
26:25   Chris Carr

Gateshead parkrun:

19:21   Paul Robinson
28:22   Rose Hawkswood

Keswick parkrun:

22:54   Luke Woodend

Greenock parkrun:

23:29   David Devennie

Highbury Fields parkrun:

20:12   Tom Tinsley
29:45   Gillian Milne

Mile End parkrun:

23:06   Chris Jones – Free, timed, 5k runs every Saturday 9am

 August 13, 2017  Posted by at 7:02 am Results No Responses »
Aug 062017

A full complement of 6 Claremont teams took part in the Gosforth Relays this morning.  Some good performances all around and the older members amongst us came away laden with booze and chocolates (makes a change from Start Fitness vouchers)!  Julie Dumpleton was fastest lady over 50, Mary Martin fastest over 60 and I am enjoying being in my new age category as I was also fastest over 60.

Team positions and times as below (Lucy and Dean would like to point out that they made a wrong turn and added 100m or so to their route):

Position Leg 1 Time Leg 2 Time Leg 3 Time Team Time
5th Sumanth Nayak 11:38 Paul Robinson 11:28 Anthony Liddle 12:05 35:11
19th Nicki O’Brien 13:40 Sarah Kerr 14:17 Lucy Dunbar 14:46 42:43
20th Howard MacLennan 13:59 Chris Carr 14:36 Dean O’Brien 14:13 42:48
21st Tom Tinsley 12:07 Dave Kear 16:07 Ken McCormick 15:55 44:09
22nd Jane Evans 14:10 Julie Dumpleton 15:56 Sarah Bowen 14:13 44:19
26th Mary Martin 16:30 Alice Vialard 15:55 Nina Jensen 14:37 47:02

Gill was there and took these photos of Claremont Road Runners present and future:

 August 6, 2017  Posted by at 7:38 pm Photos, Results No Responses »
Aug 062017

Newcastle parkrun:

20:57   Mungai Wairia
22:47   Julie Cross
24:24   Alan Dunning
24:30   John Grimshaw
25:06   Chris Carr
25:07   Brian Hegarty
25:19   David Devennie
26:02   Dave Kear
27:29   Roberto Marzo

Gateshead parkrun:

24:34   Lucy Dunbar

Whitley Bay parkrun:

26:32   Daisy Martin

Gibside parkrun:

24:23   Jane Evans

Keswick parkrun:

22:50   Luke Woodend

Fountains Abbey parkrun:

20:52   Robyn Wynn

Mile End parkrun:

22:25   Chris Jones

Southwark parkrun:

22:06   Richard Slack   PB
26:48   Marie Slack

Upton House parkrun:

21:15   David Lydall

Crissy Field parkrun, USA:

19:37   Catherine Young – Free, timed, 5k runs every Saturday 9am

 August 6, 2017  Posted by at 7:30 am Results No Responses »
Aug 012017

Update 2: Winter and Spring Cups added to spreadsheet
Update: Link to results amended

It was a perfect summer’s day for the 43 Claremonters (and guests) who turned out to race around the Town Moor. Anthony Liddle, who has made an excellent improvement in the past month, was the first Claremonter home and defended the title he won in the Spring Handicap. The Summer Cup was won by Mungai but it was a close contest between him and Robyn, who may have been handicapped slightly unfairly! Fortunately for her, she will have another chance to win it as they are both through to the Autumn Cup final along with Howard MacLennan and Dave Kear.

Many thanks as always to Bill, Lorna, Terry, Tom (the handicapper), all the marshals and Marie for sorting out the food at the pub. The next handicap is provisionally at the end of October on the Quayside.

Full results are here.

 August 1, 2017  Posted by at 9:12 am Club Handicap, Photos, Race Reports, Results No Responses »