March 2013 News and Reports


National XC Championships

Thanks to Deb Thomas for sending in the next two reports, first one from The recent National Cross Country Championships which were held in the Northeast in Sunderland. The ladies managed to get a team of 5 out whilst the men took 4 hardy souls. With unfavourable temperatures and weather of late it would be interesting to see how it went.......

The National Cross Country at Sunderland commenced with the ladies run at 2.15pm. After a 4 hour early morning journey from Stoke we arrived with about an hour to spare before the ladies race. In this time we had to find the park and ride, get to the venue, collect numbers, pitch the little tent, get changed and warmed up; in the end with only 10 minutes to go!! The conditions were snowy, freezing cold, wet and extremely muddy, which was not very appealing! On the start line myself, Mandy, Becky, Jill and Rose lined up, huddling close to try and keep warm and then we were off, trudging through the sloppy mud to get going. We had to complete two large undulating laps of 4km each. Mandy took off like a rocket from the start, she was soon out of sight, I took it a little steadier knowing that I was full of cold and taking the first lap a little easier would allow me to dig in for the second. The course was very scenic and wide enough for there not to be any bottle necking; although a Tipton runner took it upon herself to barge into me even though I was running alone and not in her way!! She soon became a target to beat after that (I did get her)!! I enjoyed the course, even with the sludge it was not excessively challenging, and I was happy to finish 97th. Mandy had a fantastic run to finish 59th, Becky was next (unfortunately she lost her chip so did not count) then Jill 322nd and Rose 270th… 24th out of 46 teams. It was very amusing to see the state of everyone at the end; head to toe in mud, should have had a wrestling match ha ha!!

The guys ran 12km and finished Phil Mainwaring 475th, Dale Colclough 749th, Dave Pickstock 765th, Pete Clarke (position not given) out of a total of around 1100 runners which was brilliant. A drink or two (mostly coffees) in the local pub helped us all to warm up and we all chatted and told our races stories. Back on the minibus then to the hotel to wash off the muck (it took about 20 minutes in the shower to get clean!) and then it was a lovely Italian meal and a night out which was brilliant and involved ‘a few’ bevies, lots of dancing and laughing…and that’s where the story will end!!

Thanks to Dale for driving both ways, Jill for the treats and cakes, Vinnie for the early morning sweets and thanks to everyone else on board for a fantastic weekend. Can’t wait for the next one!!

And on to the next race in Deb's double header which was this Sunday's Cheadle Spring 5 race, and I can tell you it was very pleasant if a little chilly in the air as I cycled out there to cheer on the runners myself. After the main race set off there was also a junior fun run which I am very pleased to say one of the Trentham Juniors won with Megan Inch leading the whole field home. Anyway, onto the main race and Deb's report:

Cheadle 5
I went into this race knowing that I was in desperate need of a massage as I’d struggled on my midweek tempo run with ‘wooden legs’ syndrome and everything from my shoulders to my ankles was feeling tight and flat. However, Cheadle 5 is one of my favourite races and I was happy to just run my best, all things considered. A nice easy two mile warm up with Jill, Paul Burslem and John Guest helped to make the decision on what to wear as it was a cool morning but I felt warm after the jog so removed my gloves before the start, and I was glad as when we lined up, the sun appeared!

On the start line the only opponent I spotted was Rebecca Harrison, whom I chatted to briefly and then we were off. The first quarter mile is down the drive from the school and helps to get you going. I kept close to Rebecca and planned to stay within easy reach of her, hoping that I might get an opportunity to get in front of her at some point. The first mile takes in a climb at about ¾ mile and Rebecca got away from me a little more when we took in the downhill afterwards. I counted she was 10 seconds in front by now. I wasn’t aware of a third lady behind me so I felt quite relaxed and focused on keeping pushing and ignoring the heavy sensation of my quads.

Miles 1-2 are undulating and I was making sure to take all the short corners where possible. Mile 2-3 gives some downhill and I tried to relax but my legs were not wanting to go any faster! I was not checking my watch for the pace as the course is so up and down it’s not possible to maintain a pace and I just wanted to go for it without worry of my time. After a sharp climb and a left turn the course was heading back towards the finish. I could see Rebecca coming back to me a little now but she was with a fellow Cheadle runner who kept looking behind and telling her I was getting closer. A guy runner near to me tried to encourage me to “go for her at mile 4” but with my legs feeling like lead I knew I couldn’t increase my stride to get much nearer to her. More ups and downs and ½ mile to go Rebecca is a lot closer now, about 6 seconds in front.

Phil Mainwaring shouts me on to push hard but I know I can’t, I’m at my limit and my legs feel like they’re buckling! The crowd are cheering Rebecca to keep working hard as “she’s right behind you” and she digs in, and I try to do the same, taking the left turn to run the last quarter mile back up the drive, I manage to pass the chap she had been next to. I use my arms to try and increase my stride and I’m so close to her now and she’s working hard too but I know I can’t get to her before the line; and then the race is over and she has beaten me!! Rebecca won in 30.52 and I was second in 30.56… Average pace was 6.11 min/mile although my splits ranged from 6.08 min/mile to 6.11 min/mile and I was pleased to have got a PB, especially considering the way I was feeling!!

Well done to all Trentham runners, I have sifted through the results and added on here. Big well done to Jill (also got a PB!), Alan and I think Stan who won their age categories!! Thanks to Paul Burslem and Guy Aartse-Tuyn for their company over the Cheadle 4 course in the sunshine for a cool down and thanks to Jill for picking me up and supplying, as always, tasty cakes and snacks for afterwards! A lovely run much enjoyed

18th     30.56     D Thomas
22nd    31.12     P Burslem
36th     33.09     J Guest
37th     33.20     E Wilson
48th     34.04     S Winterton
68th     36.13     K Widdowson
74th     36.55     J Phillips
78th     37.34     S Lovatt
87th     38.14     A Lewis
128th   43.19     G Lovatt


Thanks for those reports Debbie and the full results for the Cheadle Spring 5 can be seen here: Click here, no sorry HERE!

Cloud 9 Race

Thanks to new Trentham member Jansen Heath for sending us this report from the Congleton Cloud 9 race. Jansen went along with his wife Lisa to check out the summit of Bosley Cloud (not that you have chance to take it in) so read on to find out how they got on:

Cloud9 the first of the off road races on theTRC calendar. Even so most had opted for Tarmac this weekend doing the Cheadle 5. The four of us that had chosen for softer ground were in for a treat, it turned into a beautiful sunny morning leaving views to die for.
The green army members running were myself Janson Heath, my wife Lisa Heath , Simon Dunn a rugged fella who I hadn't met before but I knew he was an old hat in the fells and this race. Also Malcolm Rushton who I never saw on the day . We also met up with stokeFIT duo Greg boughy and frank Murphy along with lucinda. I also met Debbie Thomas's other half Adam from staffs moorlands.

On turning up for the race I anticipated trouble parking due to the size of the leisure centre car park. This was not the case as all surrounding businesses chipped in with parking space. The organisation and logistics were excellent and I congratulate Congleton Harriers for this.
The race was delayed by 15 mins due to an accident on the macc road to allow runners to get there, a tad annoying as I'd warmed up and had to start again. Simon Dunn's method of warm up looked easier. He just stood in a pink recycling bag, old school warrior.!!

When The race began and I had set myself a target of averaging 8 min miles taking into account the hill climb. I started at a steady 7:45 pace, Gregg and frank sped off, I'd be seeing frank later ;). I soon realised I should of gone out faster, there were bottle necks at stiles etc and I was agitated it was costing me time. I knew the front of the field were away and not getting the hold ups . This then Had a snowball effect as my strong point is uphill and I was struggling to get around people who had got out the blocks quicker but were slower uphill.

As I got to the top of bosley cloud the field was thinning and I knew I had to make up the loss of two near ten minute miles. I dropped a gel and threw myself downhill at 6:30 pace hopping rocks and roots on the way but making up ground. The terrain settled and I could maintain a nice pace. The next 3 miles flew by, Eventually one mile from home I crept up on Franks shoulder and sat there for a minute or two. I then picked my moment and decided to pass, he shouted some obscenity in my ear, I think it ended in!! I reached the line in 1:12 which was actually on target but I knew I could have gained a few minutes with better tactics. Simon had a cracking time of 1:09 for first male grrrrrr. . Lisa had set herself sub 1:30 and achieved it comfortably with 1:24, although she stopped when she saw me until I pointed at the finish line 30 yards away. :) Anyway congrats dear on First Lady. Ahem, Only lady!! Gotta be in it to win it tho.... Malcolm v65 clocked 1:44.

We then took advantage of the free soup, roll, banana, gingerbread man and tea and coffee. Yum.
Overall a lovely little race that I will be doing again for sure. Only £8 and some nice little touches. Also an option to buy an event T-shirt for £8 Well done congleton harriers and all that entered

Thanks for the report Jansen and by first male and first lady we assume you mean for Team Trentham :-) Great stuff and a great report. Let's keep the reports coming in please folks with the Stafford 20 and Stafford Half around the corner I'm sure there must be plenty of scope for a few lines.

Results for the Cloud 9 HERE!




Page last updated 05 March 2013


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