April News 2009

Sunday 5th April - Lynne 2nd in Blackpool Half (and a PB!)

Lots of events happening over the weekend saw several Trentham runners in action but the best performance of the weekend has to go to Lynne Callaghan who not only ran a PB in Blackpool, but also finished 2nd lady in the race - fantastic result Lynne! Here's what Lynne had to tell us:


"In the middle of April I went with Trentham, to Bath Half marathon in the hope that my 20th half would give me the long awaited for sub 90 mins. I missed out by 1 min 38 seconds in the end but felt a bit more rejuvenated with my running and felt that although Iíd got a new pb, I was tantalisingly close and needed to have another bash!

Roll on half marathon number 21! After getting up at 5:45am [shivers], Drew kindly drove me and the dog up to sunny old Blackpool - a bit of a nemesis venue for me having stopped at mile 20 in lasts years marathon!

Things didnít bode well; race pack lost in post so had to collect a new one, no timing chips this year, no water in the portaloos, hadnít felt well for 2 days ... But I pushed myself up to about row 5 and was delighted to hear a friendly ĎHave a Good One Lynne!í and turned to see our one and only Paul Burslem. He was looking raring to go and that made me a tad more positive.

I had my runners world pace band on and was determined to stick to it and soon discovered even though Paul was running the marathon, I wasnít going to be tagging onto him! Mile 1... on  1:28 pace, mile 5 ... on 1:28 pace, mile 10 ... on 1:28 pace ... mile 11 ... eek, head wind and undulations on 1:29 pace, mile 12 ... NOOOOO on 1:30 pace, mile 13 ... only 45 seconds before the dreaded time. I then ran like a huge tiger was chasing me for 0.1mile and got (by the skin of my teeth) 1:29:56!!!!!

I then promptly threw up which always shows I put a little bit of effort in. I also came in 2nd lady which was brilliant. We had a fab day and I have at last forgiven Blackpool.

Lynne xx"


Lynne storming along the front to finish as 2nd lady in a PB of 1.29.56

As Lynne has mentioned, Paul Burslem also ran in Blackpool on Sunday, but he decided to do the marathon. We haven't tracked down any results yet so not sure how he's got on, but hopefully he too will have had a brilliant race and will let us know shortly how it went - keep checking back!

** Breaking News ** Paul had a brilliant run to smash his PB and finished in 2.52 - fab result Paul - well done!

While there was action up in Blackpool, we also had Mel Dugan who headed over to Rotterdam to take part in her first ever marathon. Initial reports are that she had a superb run to finish in 3.35.12 which is excellent considering Mel hasn't been at the club for very long AND has been injured recently. Well done Mel! Hopefully Mel will let us have more details in due course.

A little closer to home, and it was the Dougie Mac 5k today over in Barlaston. For the past couple of years, our own Ian Yates has dominated this race, but unfortunately due to injury, he wasn't able to take part this year. However, in his absence, we still had some fantastic results, with Sarah Johnson finishing as 2nd lady in what looks like a tightly run race with just 24 seconds separating the top 3 ladies. This was despite Sarah having also taken part in the Midland Road Relays yesterday at Sutton Park. Ryan Procter also showed that he is recovering well from a recent bout of illness by finishing 4th chap. We also had several other Trentham runners out there which included the following:

4 Ryan Procter 18.10
9 Sarah Johnson 18.46
12 Guy Martin 19.41
38 Rosemary Wilson 22.18
41 Eva Berrill 22.28
46 Terry Parton 22.44
47 Jill Phillips 22.47


Full results can be found here.

And finally, yesterday saw the Midland Road Relay Championships taking place at Sutton Park, and this year Trentham sent a full team for both the men's and ladies' events.

The gents event needed 12 runners, and Trentham chaps didn't let us down with 12 people "volunteering" to run (with some gentle persuasion from Dan!) The team did us proud to finish 33rd in what is an extremely competitive and high quality event - well done guys!

Meanwhile, the ladies had another excellent day in the 6-stage event to finish 7th team on the day, an improvement of one position on last year, with a combined time some 2 minutes quicker, so well done ladies! A particularly HUGE thank you should go to Julia Race who stepped in at the eleventh hour to run the last leg for the ladies as we were initially one person short - THANKS JU!

Full results for the men can be found here, and ladies results can be found here.

If anybody has raced this weekend and they want to send in their own race report, please feel free to do so by clicking here.

7th April - Paul B's Version of Blackpool

On Sunday I did the Blackpool marathon. Parked about a mile from the start to allow me to warm up [walking not running]. Got myself positioned on the start about 5 rows from the start, for a good getaway, and then started looking around for familiar faces, met my mate Matt from work then just before the start a guy next to me moved and behind him
was our Lynn! We just had a min to say our what we were attempting,
The gun went for the start and we were off, I was trying to keep to around 6.30s and went through the first in 6.24 the second slowed down to 6.32 so it was time to leave the blonde with tight shorts who I was following!! As the miles piled on i got into a smooth rhythm and didn't really notice the breeze that had been in our face for the first 4 miles, soon as we turned the running became a lot easier with the wind behind us till the 10 mile mark. There we turned into it and after a minute going past runners going to 10 mile marker Our Lynn came along looking so good. The miles 10 to 13 were hard going, with having a fair breeze.
On the second lap i started going past other runners and by the time twenty came up i thought maybe 2.50 is on. Got to 23 and it was still on.
The last few miles were a nightmare going into that breeze and I just wanted to get to the finish!!  Got to the finish in 2.52 and I felt so good!!
A big thanks to all the support I've had off everyone.

Well done again Paul on a brilliant run!

12th April - Easter Weekend Action

Whilst some of us were guzzling away on Easter eggs and chocolate bunnies (ahem!), some of our more dedicated runners were out racing over the Easter weekend with PB's once again been broken.

Kathryn Ambrose took part in the Run the Bridge 5, and this is what she had to say:

Whilst I was tempted to stay in bed and munch on my little boy's Easter eggs all day (he did have far too many!), I had entered the 'Run the Bridge' race, which takes place on Easter Sunday every year, starting on the Runcorn/Widnes Bridge. For those of you who don't know it, it's a pretty flat 5 mile road race which usually draws a good crowd. The superb weather conditions attracted a few extra along this year, and the start was subsequently delayed by 15 minutes to accommodate those runners entering on the day.

 I was quite nervous beforehand, as although my training has been going really well, I did have an absolute stinker on Thursday night and Ryan had to practically drag me up New Inn Lane! In hindsight, this was a good thing, as I took Friday and Saturday as complete rest days, and my legs felt really refreshed for the first time in weeks, after taking a battering with marathon training mileage. My PB for 5 miles was set in this race a few years back, and stood at 50.53, so I knew that I'd break that unless something really bad happened, but I wanted to get under 45 minutes. Another aim of mine was to beat my hubby - something I've never managed to do before.

 I am not the best at pacing, and never have been, so I decided to start off strongly and see how long I could hold on for. Not the best strategy, I know, but I have done my best times this way! The first mile found us all jostling for position, and I managed to find room on the outside to get into my running. The novelty of holding up the traffic on one of the North West's busiest thoroughfares (the only alternative to the Mersey Tunnels for getting across Merseyside) never loses its value, and I had to allow myself a wry smile at the faces of frustrated motorists as we all ran past. I arrived at the first mile marker in 8.01, feeling comfortable, and I knew that the second mile was flat as a pancake, so I pushed on. Maybe I'd get closer to 40 minutes, I thought. Mile 2 took us along past an industrial estate (don't do this one if you like scenic routes!), and I arrived there in 16.16, greeted by my lovely baby niece and sister-in-law (they live down the road!). There's a little hill at about 2 and a half miles (when I lived in Widnes I used to think it was massive, but then I discovered Penkhull Bank...) over the railway bridge, but I was still feeling fine. I passed the 3 mile marker in 24.55, so I had slowed down to about 8.45 pace, but I tried not to get psyched out and pushed on. At about 3 and a half miles I had the naughty little voice in my head telling me to stop, but I told it I wasn't going to listen and to stop being so pathetic! Kept up that pace for a while by using the distraction technique of focusing on the next lamppost (seemed to work), and I knew that I wasn't far away from the 4 mile marker. By this stage I felt like I had nothing left, so it was just a case of hanging on! There was a really cruel '400m to go' sign with about half a mile to go (according to the oracle that is my Garmin) which was pretty annoying, especially when about 400m later you had the '200m to go' sign! By the time I got there, I did find a little something extra and pushed for the line. My finishing time was 42.48, a PB by just over 8 minutes, which I am really pleased with. I wish I'd had more for the last mile, but there you go. The next aim is to get under 40 minutes for 5 miles! But today does bode well for the marathon in 2 weeks' time (I'm not one of the lucky ones going to FLM, I'm off to do Stratford!), where I'm looking for a sub-4.30. Watch this space...

 All in all, I had a really good day, and would thoroughly recommend anyone to do this race next year. I got a nice T-shirt, and they were serving hot cross buns and tea at the finish (there's a pull if ever you needed one!). And the best thing of all? I left my hubby for dead at the start line!

 Kathryn x

Fantastic result Kathryn - and we're pretty sure that there are more fantastic runs to come!

Easter Sunday also saw the running of the Air Products 10k in Crewe, and having scoured the results for Team Trentham, I came across the following:

93  Kenneth BLOOR  M45  Trentham RC   00:41:44

121  Stephen BURROWES   M45  Trentham RC    00:43:46

157   Mark HUGHES    M50    Trentham RC   00:46:22

184   Rosemary WILSON   F50   Trentham RC   00:47:35


so well done to you guys too on your performances - looks like the weather was kind to you too!

And finally, away from the running, I'm sure we would all like to wish Richard O'Keeffe a belated HAPPY 60th BIRTHDAY for the weekend - hope you had a fantastic time and that the party went well!

If you have raced recently, drop us an email so we can add it to the website.

Monday 20th April - Weekend Racing Update

Well thereís been a hell of a lot of action again in the past few days, starting with the first race in the Spring Treble Series at Hanchurch Woods on Thursday evening. After a wet and windy day, the weather had dried up somewhat by the evening, but no doubt the hilly course was still somewhat muddy in parts.

 A good turnout of Trentham runners saw no less than 15 or so folks turning out for the club, with Richard Ogden being the first one to finish for the club in 10th place, Jo Donnelly is really coming into her own, and had a fantastic run to finish as first lady on the night which will hopefully bode well for the next race which is at Milford near Stafford this Thursday evening. Full results for Hanchurch can be found here.

Sunday saw the 4th race in the North Staffs Road Runners League, and also one of our own club championship races, with the Newcastle 7 taking runners up the infamous Black Bank. The day started with glorious sunshine, if a little on the chilly side, but by the time the race started at 11am, it was almost like a summerís day. There was an excellent turnout for Team Trentham with 20+ of us taking part including new member Nathan Smith who was donning his Trentham vest for the first time. Paul Gibbings, Stan Winterton, Gerry Calvert and Adela Salt all came away with prizes in their age group category, whilst Sarah Johnson finished in 3rd place overall in the ladies race, and with Del in 4th and Joanne Donnelly in 5th, the ladies team prize was pretty much guaranteed for Trentham Ė so well done ladies once again! 

Whilst the race was extremely well organised and very well marshalled, it took forever before the presentation took place, and it appears that we might be waiting a few days before the full results become available so unfortunately we canít let you know everybody elseís positions or times as yet. However, keep checking here and no doubt they will appear shortly.

In the meantime, the team photo below was taken by Mark Day's wife, with this message from Mark himself:

"Hi Del

Here's the team photo we promised you from Newcastle 7.

It was yet another first time course for me, and I really enjoyed it. It was my best run for a few months. Great to see such a good team turnout again :)

Cheers, Mark"

Not everybody that raced Newcastle is in the above photo, so here are some action shots of the other Trentham runners, taken by Andy - I think he caught everybody, but apologies to anybody that is missing!



And last but not least, this has come in from Paul Burslem, who seems to be recovering pretty well from his recent adventure at the marathon up in Blackpool just a couple of weeks ago....

Hi folks,

While all you lot were at Castle 7, I made the journey to Whitley [just south of Warrington] to see friends.

Felt quite good and fancied a pb. Instead I performed a master class in
starting off to fast!! The first few miles flew past on the flat and going down hill[5.48,5.56,5.46,5.46]. Then we hit a few Cheshire hills [just bumps to us down here!] and my legs just turned to jelly[6.20,5.57,then 1.31 for the last 0.26 miles] I made my time 37.07 for 6.26,it was a pb by 2secs, but deffo a struggle to do it like that!! As it was I got a pb for the 5k time very easily

Paul Burslem

Thanks for this Paul - and well done on your run.

And finally finally, for those of you that didn't know, it's the London Marathon this coming weekend, and there are a few of Team Trentham heading down to the capital for this fantastic event. Those that we know are heading down include the following:

Alison Bradeley, Kaz Brandt, Jill Phillips, Ryan Procter, Jayne Dickens, Adela Salt, Debbie Thomas, and Sam Newton. Kaz and Ryan are running to raise funds for the Cats Protection League (see home page for how to sponsor them!) so PLEASE, if you haven't done so already, make a donation - it doesn't matter how big or small!

Good luck to all of our runners and remember that whilst PB's make us chuffed to bits, the most important thing is to go down there and have FUN! Don't forget to let us know how you get on.

28th April - Milford Murder and Other Race Action

Lots of races again over the past week or so, and a few race reports have been coming through for your enjoyment.

First of all, this has come in from Jo Donelley who is running fantastically at the moment,

Thought I'd send a few words about  the spriing treble at Milford
last week. This is my first attempt at this so please feel free to edit
where necessary.

When I thought about  entering the 'spring treble series' a few weeks ago, for some reason I had a picture in my mind of lovely flat evening
runs, through beautiful woodland, surrounded by spring flowers bathed in
evening sunshine!!!!!!

Two races in and the stark reality however has hit home. These off road
races are hard work, with rutted rocky paths, mud, and a whole load of
hills!!!! (and still not a bluebell in sight).

Following my surprise win in the Hanchurch race I was feeling a bit nervous,
but had decided to follow the same tactics and go out steady and then push on in the later half of the race. As the start whistle went, all my plans for some bizarre reason went out of the window and there I was sprinting off. As we reached the top of the first big climb, with my lungs bursting and legs burning, I looked up to see Richard and Ryan just in front of me, and it started to dawn on me that I had gone off WAY to fast. Gradually the guys went past me one by one and I basically spent the rest of the race going from mild versions of "I'm knackered and can't go on" to desperation that the race "cant be that much longer!!!!" .  Anyway, after what seemed like hours I managed to finish the race in one piece and secured another 1st in the womens race.

On reflection, now that the pain in my back and legs is starting to
subside, I can honestly say that the two races so far have been great fun
and a nice change to road races. They have also given me two really hard
runs which I wouldn't have had just training by myself. The support from
the Trentham gents has also been fantastic. I can honestly say that I would not have performed as well without the support from others Trentham runners
around me during the races.

Trentham ladies are also lying second in the ladies team race with good
strong runs from Kiri and Eva across the two races so far.  Well Done to
all who have taken part.


Whilst all eyes were probably glued to another marathon on Sunday, it's easy to forget that other races are taking place on the same day, and this report from Kathryn Ambrose came in about the Stratford Marathon,


Hope everyone had a great day in London! I've already heard about Jill's fabulous time - hope you enjoyed that beer in Hyde Park afterwards!  

As you know, I went down to Stratford to do the Shakespeare Marathon. I was hopeful of a PB, and I got one! My official time was 4.52:21, which knocked a whole 1 hr 18 mins off my last marathon. Although I would've liked to have done sub-4.30, the weather was not on my side and I did find it tough going in the heat. My quads started to really hurt at about 16 miles, but I am proud to say that I ran every step of the way, even if it was a very undignified shuffle by the end! And I have to admit, I cried when I crossed the line.

I am really hurting now - I have one black toenail and some very strange bruising on my legs, but it was worth it. And I'm planning my next marathon! I might give it until next year though...

 Kathryn xx

Well done Kathryn on your excellent run!

And finally, it was a day of mixed emotions for Team Trentham at the Flora London Marathon on Sunday with a combination of elation and disappointment for our runners.

The day itself started cool, dry and sunny but by 9am it was evident that it was going to be a warm one with the temperatures rising and people already stripping off to shorts and vests.

This year there were changes to the women's race with the Championship ladies having to start at 9.45am along with the men rather than the elite ladies - a decision made without consultation and which was unpopular with many runners and spectators that we spoke to. With more runners jostling for position along the "blue line" and fighting to get in sufficient drinks as they dodged through the faster men, the result was the complete opposite of what the organisers were hoping for (and I'm certainly going to get a petition started to change it back!)

Despite this, Jayne Dickens had a fantastic day in which she earned herself her first sub 3 hour marathon and a huge PB (6 mins) to finish in around 2.56. Setting off at a fast pace, Jayne passed half way in around 1.22 and despite slowing in the second half, her earlier efforts gave her a good window to break the 3 hours - a MASSIVE well done Jayne!

Next over the line for the club was Ryan Procter who admits he would love to have broken 3 hours but in reality, due to recent illness, he knew would be tough. Predicting a 3.08 - almost half an hour faster than his PB - Ryan had an absolutely brilliant run to smash that PB by nearly half an hour, finishing in around 3.07.30 - absolutely brilliant running and certainly an indication that Ryan will do the sub 3 before long - well done Ry!

Another runner who excelled himself was Sam Newton who was making his debut at the distance. Initially saying he would be chuffed with 3.30, Sam ran a 3.16 which is an impressive time for a first marathon, especially in the heat, and Sam certainly was a chirpy chap when we spotted him at the finish!

Other Trentham runners included Jill Phillips who was hoping for 3.30 ish but finished in 3.43 (although she still looked happy at the end with a big grin on her face!), and Gareth Williams who was aiming for a sub 4 hours and ran 3.58 - well done to you 2 - a fantastic effort.

Whilst there were celebrations for those runners, 2 others were forced to drop out, but the good news is that both are ok and still in one piece.

Having been struggling with plantar fasciitis for several months now, Adela Salt made the difficult decision to withdraw from the race at 19 miles due to stabbing pains in her feet. Although slowing due to the pain, she was still on course for a sub 3 but the risk of carrying on was too much.

Kaz Brandt was also on target for a massive PB but at 20 miles she collapsed from dehydration and ended up being taken to hospital. Thankfully she was discharged after a few hours and now looks forward to a good rest and a holiday.

Ending on a positive note, Del and Kaz are both ok and will no doubt be back before too long and both will be determined to achieve their goals. In the meantime, we should be proud of all our runners over the past few days and congratulate them all on their performances - WELL DONE GUYS!

Full results for the FLM can be found on their website www.london-marathon.co.uk

Jo is the Spring Treble Champion

A massive well done to Jo Donnelly who was crowned Ladies Spring Treble Champion for 2009 following her excellent performance at the final race at Kibblestone on Thursday evening. Jo has been running fantastically recently now that she is managing to keep the injuries at bay, and hopefully this is the start of many more victories to come.

The treble series has been extremely well attended by Trentham this year, and in addition to Jo, Richard Ogden also came away with a prize in his age group.

As we know, running isn't always about winning, and this from Mark Day giving his view of the Spring Treble clearly shows that.

"This was my first time at these races, and I thoroughly enjoyed them. I have to say that at the time I was running I might not have enjoyed it all, but looking back on them gives a good sense of satisfaction.

After Hanchurch I wondered what the other courses held in store, but of the three I particularly enjoyed Milford. I ran well at that one, and enjoyed the pint in the pub with a few other Trentham runners afterwards. I enjoyed last nights (Kibblestone) the least, but that was down to the fact that I ran the last two laps with bad stomach cramps more than anything. I was just pleased to see the finish line (and the toilet block - although maybe thats just a bit too much information!!!). It wasn't all bad though, I always enjoy a bit of mud to run through, and there was plenty of that to be had.

It was good to get a number of Trentham runners out at all 3 races, and well done to everyone that took part, not just the ones who were near the top of the leaderboard. Personally, it matters more to me being out there enjoying being part of the club than the time I finish in, and I'd encourage even more people at the club to give some of the races a go.

Thank you to everyone who came to cheer us all on.


Full results can be found here.




Page last updated 03 May 2009


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