Vale Royal AC - Senior Section

Running and Athletics in the Heart of Cheshire.

Archive - January to June 2009

25 June:  Currently working away in Harrogate, Iain Wedge finished 10th Overall in the Esholt trail race near Leeds, and in the process claimed the prize for 1st V40.

22 June:  Congratulations to Sandie and Matt Sweeting - on the birth of their 3rd daughter Francesca (7lbs).   Mother and baby said to be doing well, dad almost recovered too! 

 NATIONAL SILVER FOR ANDY GIBBS!!!!   

21 June:  Andy Gibbs had a fantastic run in Horwich at the British Masters 5K championship.  A typically committed Andy finished in silver medal position in the MV45 race - only losing out on gold in the last 400 yards of the race.  Well done Andy - brilliant!!  Pauline finished a creditable 8th in LV55 championship.  What a week for the club! 

2 M45

Andy Gibbs

16:07

8 L55

Pauline Davies 

                     22:26

20 June:  A big turn out for the next round of the Cheshire Grand Prix Series at the Lymm 5k.  Gemma Barnett and Stu Doyle were running to maintain their leads in the ladies and men's series.  Stu had a superb run for 6th place overall (3rd Cheshire) and holds on to his overall lead.   Gemma was 2nd club lady home and 6th from Cheshire but maintained her big lead in the series.  Vale Royal ladies had an excellent run to win the team prize.

6

Stu Doyle

16:36

25

Mike Harrington

17:44

31

Zack Bamber

18:06

43

Pete Maher

18:30

48

Lewis Healey

18:42

55

Gary Weedall

18:54

57

Tessa McCormick

18:57

58

John Todd

18:58

81

Gemma Barnett

19:51

97

Kate Spilsbury

20:15

109

Louise Towers

20:45

118

Hannah Bishop

21:04

123

Amelia Pettitt

21:17

186

Richard Pettitt

23:46

195

Jayne Lomax

24:09

19 June: More club success in the men's and ladies races at the Tough Team Event in Tattenhall.  On a cool breezy night, Mary Tavener, Jo Molyneaux and Helen Smith were first ladies home having had a good battle through the race.  Tom sided with the opposition as he joined the Wrexham AC duo Mike Robbins and Darren Rowlands to win the event by a good margin in what was announced as a course record but it's not even a club record!.  Tom's planned partners Goffy and Darren chose instead to run with a strong 10k runner...but must have got lost on the course somewhere!.   Several other club teams completed the event and had a good time at the bar after the race! 

1

Tom Annable/(M Robbins/D Rowlands)

56:23

14 

Pete Maher/(A Maddock/P Deaman) 

70:58 

19

Glyn Evans/Matt Brown/Tommy Burns

72:16

20

John Todd/Dave Haines/Tim Drohan

74:13

22 (1st L)

Jo Molyneaux/MaryTavener/Helen Smith

74:59

27

Dave Hanson/Jo Edwards/(R Crowe)

77:12

28

Dave Gough/Darren Cottier/(D Crawford)

77:53

36

Barry Chambers

81:47

44

Paul Clutterbuck/Steve Bradshaw/Colin Rathbone

84:47

46

Janet Snow/Karen Midgeley

85:15

18 June: Club success at the Shugborough relays!   Fastest for the 2 mile leg was Mark Thornley who with the help of Mike, Mary, and Tony won the 200+ "ultra vets" category in superb style.  Carol, Pauline, Colin and John all had excellent runs to finish 2nd in the 240+ "Super Vets" category. This race is highly recommended by all who did it so one to mark in the diary for next year.  Results.

1 (200+)

Mark Thornley

11.52

 

Mary Tavener

14:00

 

Mike Weedall

12:01

 

Tony Archer

12:29

2 (240+)

Carole Williams

15:56

 

Pauline Davies

14:34

 

Colin Rathbones

13:22

 

John Davies

13:39

16 June: - Pete Clayton and Dave Hanson ran in the heat in the tough Potteries 'Arf Marathon  on Sunday.   A third club runner also completed the course..........

60

Pete Clayton

1:28:55

94 

Paul "Toddy" Lloyd 

         1:31:05

209

Dave Hanson

1:39:40

While most of the squad were at the Castles, there was still a strong team out at the Dunham 5K. There were some excellent performances and a big PB for Helen Smith.

6

Stu Doyle

16:45

55

John Carroll

19:37

62

John Clarke

19:48

91

Helen Smith

21:22

105

Barry Chambers

21:40

WELSH CASTLES 2009!     

15 June: A great weekend at the Welsh Castles!    The team spirit was excellent as usual with blue and yellow visible throughout Wales!  After a colourful Dave completed the team efforts into Cardiff castle, the team had finished in 27th place in 25:32:13 and 25th in the mountains.  Some great performances and most importantly some great support!  A few pics in the gallery....full results are available here.  Rob's pictures are here.

Stage

Position

Castler

Time

 

1

31

Mary Tavener

1:11:06

 

2

18

Mark Thornley

1:10:06

 

3

53

Nick Heywood

1:39:53

Mountain

4

29

Jo Molyneaux

1:11:55

 

5

33

Pauline Davies

1:14:12

 

6

22

Dave Haines

1:14:24

 

7

54

Paul Clutterbuck

1:21:33

Mountain

8

49

Jane Campion

1:27:17

 

9

49

Carole Williams

1:15:46

 

10

33

Tom Armstrong

1:29:49

Mountain

11

8

Tom Annable

1:14:23

Mountain

12

36

Steve Smith

1:19:04

 

13

24

James Edwards

1:14:49

 

14

18

Darren Cottier

1:14:35

Mountain

15

21

Colin Rathbone

1:27:05

 

16

34

Rob Olliver

1:05:57

Mountain

17

12

Bernie Jones

56:29

Club record!

18

47

Janet Snow

1:17:10

 

19

24

Tony Archer

1:19:10

 

20

16

Dave Gough

1:07:30

 

9 June:  An elite group turned out for the Capenhurst 10k on Sunday.  Photo's are in the gallery and results below:

31

Kate Spilsbury

41:43

37

Colin Rathbone

43:30

39

Barry Chambers

43:51

41

Mary Tavener

44:18

47

Pauline Davies

45:58

 5 June:  The Bowden 5k was run in perfect racing conditions on Thursday night.  Here are the provisional results (still awaiting the published results).  The results of two family duels (Miles and Davies) can be judged below.  Well done Andrew for being first Vale Royaler!

38

Andrew Miles

17:21

 

39

Graham Miles

17:25

 

46

Pete Maher

17:33

3rd MV50

60

Ian Wedge

18:03

 

?

John Clark

19:??

 

140

Sergei Ryabov

20:28

 

152

Mary Tavener

20:57

 

?

John 'Coach' Davies

21:25

 

?

Pauline Davies

21:47

1st LV55

4 June:  Mike Harrington takes 25th place in the Full Bronte 5 in Haworth, West Yorkshire in a time of 30.36.

31 May:  In the undulating Golden Gate 10k, held in the picturesque Chatsworth Park, Mike Harrington took 22nd place in 41.23 with Helen Whitby, showing good form, less than 4 minutes behind in 45.20 (6th Lady). 

It was scorching hot weather for the Edinburgh Marathon - so on a day where finishing would be an achievement for most,  Jo Edwards got home in an excellent 3:58 (1:53 to half distance) with Jayne Lomax following a few minutes behind in 4:12 (1:55) and Val Kinvig chasing them home 4:21 (1.56).  Well done girls and enjoy a couple of days off! 

2460

Jo Edwards

3:58:42

3375

Jayne Lomax

4:12:49

4008

Val Kinvig  

4:21:08

30 May: News from New Mexico Updated!  The Hollins Green 5K took place in blistering heat on Saturday.  Pete Maher continued his fine return to form with an excellent 19th place.  John Todd, still suffering from a troublesome hip injury was back to racing while Gemma ran an excellent sub-20 time.  Mary was a bit off the pace she set at Christleton but still had a solid run. 

19

Pete Maher

17:47

45

John Todd

18:59

66

Gemma Barnett

19:50

109

Mary Tavener

21:52

The 9km very hilly Wincle Trout Race in Derbyshire was run in scorching hot weather! Tom finished 9th in ~41:50 with Darren just a few places behind in ~42:30 after a fall on the dangerous last descent.  Goffy, Tommy, Clutty, Hainsey, Click and Braddy all agreed that conditions were tough....indeed several us had the same thought at the 1.5 mile point.........turn left here and i could call it a day!  Results:

9

Tom Annable

41:52

13

Darren Cottier

42:29

21

Dave Gough

44:35

29

Tom Armstrong

46:17

48

Dave Haines

49:39

76

John Clarke

52:22

152

Paul Clutterbuck

58:04

226

Steve Bradshaw

65:58

28 May:  A big club turn-out at the Mobberley 5.3 multi-terrain race.  Full result below but Darren was 7th overall, Dave just behind in 9th place, Col was 2nd MV65 and we had an age-category winner with Pauline finishing 1st LV55! Photo's in the gallery.

7

Darren Cottier

31.45

9

Dave Gough

32.10

25

John Carroll

34.44

35

David Murphy

35.36

46

Nick Haywood

37.24

47

Colin Rathbone

37.41

66

Pauline Davies

39.17

67

Jo Molyneaux

39.18

69

Paul Clutterbuck

39.31

135

Carole Williams

46.31

143

Tricia Ironside

47.26

24 May:  Janet Snow made her debut over the marathon distance at the tough White Peak Marathon in Matlock, Derbyshire.   Janet completed the distance in an excellent PB(!).....4:16.01 for 137th place.  Fantastic run Janet!  

22 May:  The first of the North Cheshire 5K Series was at Dunham Massey on Friday.   Stu Doyle was 5th, John Clarke was 2nd MV55:

5

Stu Doyle

16:35

24

Darren Cottier

17:59

26

Pete Maher

18:02

47

John Carroll

19:16

57

John Clarke

19:32

104

Barry Chambers

21:43

17 May:  In breezy conditions at the Shell Chester Half Marathon, Tom Armstrong ran an excellent PB inside his 1:25 target, but it was under 20 runner Zach Cross who brought the squad home in an impressive 1:17 and a top 10 finish. Our only representative from the ladies, Helen Smith was a massive 4 minutes quicker than at Helsby earlier in the year.  Here are the full results: 

7

Zach Cross

1:17:35

52

Tom Armstrong

1:24:16 PB

56

Pete Clayton

1:24:42

90

John Carroll

1:27:55

149

Rob Olliver

1:31:10

289

Helen Smith

1:37:08

and at the Manchester Great Run 10k, Gary Weedall pipped Matt Sweeting for 1st club finisher in the massive field.  Both were disappointed to have lost to Heile Gebreselassie!  Anne Budenberg ran an excellent race in 45 minutes:

139

Gary Weedall

38:03

145

Matt Sweeting

38:12

1793

Anne Budenberg

45:31

7664

Chris Griffiths

53:04

8328

Gareth Johnson

53:45

The Moulton "Pound the Bounds" Race attracted a slightly smaller field than at Manchester, but Col and Carole were out to enjoy a friendly low-key event especially as it started and finished at the pub!  Col finished 3rd in 30 minutes and Carol was 1st Lady in 35 minutes!    

16 May: British Masters Relays, Sutton Coldfield. Thanks to all team members and supporters who made it a memorable trip to the Midlands! Andy Gibbs was in cracking form with a scorching run over the 3 mile course finishing in 9th place on his leg.  Surely that will be good enough to earn a country vest?! With 7 more great runs after that, the team finished in 26th place in the MV40 category. Here are the times and the positions after each of the 8 legs:  

9

Andy Gibbs

15:32

12

Tom Annable

16:31

24

Dave Gough

17:33

22

Pete Maher

17:02

20

Tony Archer

19:18

22

Mark Houldcroft

19:05

24

Paul Clutterbuck

20:58

26

Colin Rathbone

19:47

12 May: Helen proves to be a REAL star by crossing the line first in the Race For Life at Delamere on Sunday - 

www.realradionorthwest.co.uk/events/race-for-life-2009-whp3/race-for-life-pictures/d1a6srmx/photo-30524/

11 May: Results Round up: Tommy Armstrong produced a fantastic performance on Sunday to take 13th place in the South Cheshire 20 in a time of 2.18.11. This is believed by many to be the best performance by a Tesco employee for many years! 

Mike Harrington took 4th place in the Wavertree 5k in Liverpool last Wednesday in a time of 17.56, following Mike home in 40th place was regular racer Barry Chambers. Barry completed the course in 22.05.

Rob Olliver continued his tour of Yorkshire Half Marathon's on Sunday, with another fine run. Having completed the Sheffield Half in 1.30.31 (288th out of 4,591), 2 weeks ago, Rob ventured back over the pennines to take part in the Leeds Half this weekend and finished in a time of 1.31.37, a 3 minute improvement on his time there last year!

Andrew Miles took 3rd place in the U17's 3000m at the Cheshire Track & Field Champs in 9.57 (just 7 seconds outside his dads PB!) and 8th place in the 800m in 2.16.0 (which tops the family rankings!).

10 May:  A first victory for the club at the 'Runaway Dash'  on the Ascension Islands!  Olivia:   The race was out and back on the 2 mile runway.  It was a cloudy but windy morning  so was not too hot (for a change!) but poured down at the finish. There were prizes for the first finisher over all, the first lady and the runner up. I won both the first finisher and the first lady awards! I was surprised, as there were quite a few military guys there, all thinking one of them would win. It was funny, I don’t think some of them were too impressed being beaten by a girl. The US Base Commander said afterwards that it had not done his reputation any good being beaten by a ‘chick’, and an English one at that (not even military!). So, there were smiles all round from the locals - they can’t remember a girl winning before.  Prizes were given out by the Administrator of the Island.

10 May:  Col, Carole, Pauline, Paul and Goffy make the trip to Shropshire for the Muller 10k and the complimentary yoghurts!  Dave ran well after Friday's 5K (and the FLM!), Paul moved closer to the 40 minute barrier. Col showed he's still in good form taking 1st MV65, Carole achieved her 51 minute target and Pauline put London behind her and won the LV55 category - a successful day out!   

53

Dave Gough

37:58

103

Paul Lloyd 

40.47

131

Colin Rathbone

41:52

257

Pauline Davies

45:12

620

Carole Williams

51:39

8 May:  A windy night for the Christleton 5K didn't put off the big Vale Royal squad!  StuD brings us home in 16:20 just outside his PB.  Mary (1st FV45) has a superb run to equal her PB just 2 weeks after London, and Mrs Hainesy commences the inevitable!  Also PBing was Paul Clutterbuck!  Results:

23

Stu Doyle

16.20

42

Tom Annable

17.07

47

Graham Miles

17.22

55

Pete Maher

17.42

59

Dave Gough

17.49

66

Iain Wedge

18.22

81

Liz Crawshaw 

19.01 

82 

Jo Marsden 

19.06 

90

John Carroll

19.23

92

Dave Haines

19.26

94

Sara Atkinson     

19.39 PB

124

Mary Tavener

20.54 PB=

134

Paul Clutterbuck

21.05 PB

136

Barry Chambers

21.13

142

John Davies

21.41

205

Jill Haines 

26.58 

.29 April:  Goyt Valley 10k Trail Race, Errwood, Derbyshire Two club members made the trip across to Derbyshire, last Wednesday evening, to take part in the picturesque (and undulating!) Goyt Valley 10K and both had excellent runs. On a tough course, which produced a winning time of 37.53, Police Mike (Harrington) showed further signs to indicate that his race fitness is quickly returning by taking 14th position in a time of 42.01. Whilst newcomer (Police) Ian Wedge made a fine debut for the club to secure 25th place in 44.40 (5th V40).

 

27 April:  LONDON MARATHON WEEKEND.   On a beautiful day for spectating, the warm and sunny weather was not ideal for all in this years marathon although it wasn't as tough as 2 years ago!   The story of the weekend was Grand Col's fantastic efforts to try and claim a MV65 podium spot..   Although not achieving his long held goal of winning the category, Colin had a cracking run to finish in 3:11 and 3rd place after closing rapidly on the leader in the latter stages.   The first medal winning performance at the FLM for Vale Royal!  Jo Molyneaux had a superb run with a PB of 3:27 despite being full of the cold and most of us thinking she'd do well to finish.   Gemma also showed how much she is improving with a PB and breaking her 3:20 target by just over a minute.  Paul Clutterbuck found the last three miles  tough and was spotted stopping for a stretch at 23 miles before Mike H kicked him back on his way!    Well done also to Pete, Dave and Mary who despite not achieving their ambition times were very positive about the day and their performances.   Stewart Irlam, who has joined us in training this year, finished the race with his brother Michael in 4:42 with a big smile on his face and, annoyingly, no visible signs of fatigue!  Pauline had looked good to half distance but withdrew shortly after as she suffered in the heat.  She'll be back........but she says not at marathon distance.  We'll see!  Well done to all - it was a pleasure to watch! 

1321

287

Pete Clayton

3:06:51

1512

215

Dave Gough

3:09:11

1688

3

Colin Rathbone

3:11:39

241

152

Gemma Barnett

3:18:57 PB

433

49

Jo Molyneaux

3:27:25 PB

564

68

Mary Tavener

3:31:50

4377 

2312 

Adam Gear 

3:35:40

9756

1850

Paul Clutterbuck

4:06:37 PB

16130

2042

Stewart Irlam

4:42:05 PB

19 April:  A good club turn out at the Whitley 10k.   In beautiful weather, Pete Maher brought the team home in 18th place.   Tom Armstrong continues to show his potential in 27th place.  Colin was also demonstrating the benefits of his high mileage racing as he scared a few of the 'youngsters'!  Results:

18

Pete Maher

37:22

27

Tom Armstrong

39:17

49

Rob Olliver

40:41

56

Dave Haines

41:08

59

James Edwards

41:23

62

Colin Rathbone

41:53

91

Barry Chambers

44:19

97

Helen Smith

44:41

102

Mary Tavener

45:13

129

Sophie Axford

47:27

150

Jayne Lomax

49:06

188

Carole Williams

52:17

16 April: Newcomer Dave Murphy led home a trio of Vale Royal runners in the increasingly popular Runcorn Bridge 5 Mile race on Easter Sunday. In a field with a record number of 636 finishers they recorded the following performances: 

63

Dave Murphy

32:59

84

Steve Smith

33:55

151

Barry Chambers

36:35

Cheshire Champs medalists:  LV45 Gold for Mary at the 5 mile champs!  Senior Silver for Gemma and Senior Bronze for Stu Doyle at the 10k champs.  Well done! 

Cheshire GP Standings:  Gemma Barnett and Stu Doyle currently lead the Cheshire GPs.  Vale Royal teams lie 2nd in the ladies and 3rd in the mens.   Results

12 April:  A fantastic run by Gemma at the Air Products 10k.  The race was both the next round of the Cheshire GP and this year's Cheshire 10k champs.   Gemma recorded a PB and finished 3rd lady overall!   Gemma leads the Cheshire GP and this should help her to maintain that!  Although the weather was fantastic and the course flat, times were not that quick and there were some claims that the course was a bit long.  Col was not convinced - he probably cut the corners though!   StuD brought the men home in 8th place to continue his excellent challenge for the men's GP.  Also a well earned PB by Rob!   

8

Stu Doyle

34:19

20

Tom Annable

35:46

30

Mike Harrington

36:44

50

John Todd

38:34

55

Gary Weedall

38:51

79

Gemma Barnett

40:44 PB

81

Rob Olliver

40:49 PB

113

Helen Whitby

43:16

114

Colin Rathbone

43:16

115

Dave Gough

43:17

198 

Jayne Lomax 

48:50 

243

Carole Williams

53:01

8 April:  Spring 5.  Mary Tavener gets gold in the Cheshire Champs 5 mile for LV21 category!.    Mike Harrington showed he is coming back to form and a terrific PB for Carole Williams in 41 minutes!  Tony was also on form after his altitude training.   Pete Maher is also showing good form as he takes 2nd MV50.

26

Mike Harrington

29:20

35

Pete Maher

30:06

65

John Todd

31:06

75

Pat Toolis

31:36

99

Mike Carroll

32:55

100

Dave Haines

33:01

102

John Carroll

33:03

108

Tony Archer

33:16

151

Colin Rathbone

34:57

157

Mary Tavener

35:01

277

Carole Williams

41:05 PB

5 April:   On a more serious matter, we have received a complaint about the inappropriate use of nicknames on this website.  Following an official club enquiry we have agreed that Big Stu is no longer to be called Big Stu as the use of the adjective "big" is sadly wrong (although perceived size is relative so i assume the fact that Goffy named him may tell us something!).  We sincerely apologise for calling Big Stu "Big Stu" and in future we will refer to Big Stu as StuD until a more appropriate nickname is assigned.  Watch this space.  Fortunately we're OK with Big Matt. 

4 April:   A quieter weekend for racing meant there were some fresher legs for a blistering Sunday Run!   However despite Goffy's awesome victory on the run in to Knight's Grange, the real news was several hunded miles south where Grand Col was in action again.   Col was completing his spring tour of the best 20+mile races in the country at the Exe to Axe coastal race (21.3 miles on his new GPS).  The course is on coastal path with ~4000ft of climb - so you'd expect it to be hard!.   Col described it as "the toughest race of my life" and "not the best idea I've had" after he finished in 3:27:20 (he got the minutes right but the hours wrong!) for 34th place.   Only 1 runner finished inside 3 hours!   Fingers crossed that the race has put him in good shape for London! 

29 March:  In perfect calm and sunny racing conditions, several Vale Royalers competed in the Wilmslow Half Marathon.   Gavin brought the squad home with an excellent run as he returns to form.  Big Stu kept up his challenge for the Cheshire Grand Prix with another strong run.  Tom Armstrong showed his ability with an excellent 1:25 - dragging Goffy with him for good measure.  Caroline Jones found the distance tough but enjoyed the race and was happy with her performance.  

45

Gavin Tomlinson

01:13:04

50

Stu Doyle

01:14:17

149

Pete Clayton

01:22:31

188

John Todd

01.25.01

207

Tom Armstrong

01:25:54PB

208

Dave Gough

01:25:54

371

Gemma Barnett

01:31:02

752

Jo Molyneaux

01:38:11

1192

Paul Clutterbuck

01:44:08

1340

Jayne Lomax

01:45:40PB

1419

Jo Edwards

01:46:35

3293

Caroline Jones

02:11:30

At the Lincoln 10k, Mike & Helen return to racing!  Colin's racing again but over a rather shorter distance than of late.  Carole has a great run with 51:13.

64Mike Harrington36:30
338Colin Rathbone41:50
376Helen Whitby42:22
1455Carole Williams51:13 PB

HE'S BACK!   Mike returns to racing at the 10-mile Grizedale Forest Trail Race.    Mike (who, apparently, is now unattached!), runs superbly for 11th place and 1st MV50.   Mary also runs well after last weeks efforts at Milford. 

11Mike Weedall61:52
75Mary Tavener75:39
122 Janet Snow83.00 
131 Rachel Richardson 83:57 

25 March:  Skinny Matt raced in the "Sticky Toffee Pudding Trail Race" (try saying that quickly!) in Cartmel on Sunday.  In very muddy conditions, Matt finished the 11mile/2000ft race in 65th place in a time of 1:33:25.  Sadly Matt's son Lewis had a tumble and fractured his collar bone during the race (his debut in the fells).   Lewis proved his character by finishing the race!

On a happier note we have two new arrivals to report.  Mel had a little boy, named Harry, just 1 week ago.  Mel is desparate to get training already!  Glenn's wife Karen also had a little boy which they've named Fraser Stephen Wilson.  Congratulations to both. 

22 March:  Colin finishes 3rd MV60 in yet another 20 mile race - this time the Ashby 20 in Leicestershire.   Showing no signs of the previous days XC, Colin managed 2:27:43 - that's three 20 milers in 3 weeks and all within 20 seconds of each other.  Amazing!  3 down, 1 to go..................meanwhile at the Milford 21, Snowdonia marathon veteran, Paul "Sandstone Trail is a Cakewalk" Clutterbuck was in somewhat reflective mood when reporting the race as "the hardest ****ing race i've ever ****ing done!!  Steve Bradshaw, in similar mood, has decided never to race again!  Thanks for the warning lads!  No comment yet from Mary!  Mary finished 2nd LV45.

Milford 21 

75                    Mary Tavener3:07:16
97Paul Clutterbuck3:15:11
126Steve Bradshaw 3:50:16

21 March:   Andy Gibbs finished a fantastic 5th MV45 in the British Masters XC at Ruthin.  Starting in typically quick fashion, Andy moved up into 3rd on the last lap only to lose out in the run in.    Also running in the 35-50 race was Tom Annable who paid for his quick start, faded in the middle of the three laps and struggled home from there!   Another masterpiece of tactical running!    In the 50+'s, Colin worried everyone by running despite his injury.   Colin ran well considering this was a prelude to Sunday's Ashby 20 (3x20 miles with 6 days rest - quite an interval session that Col).    In the ladies race, Carole Williams was first Vale Royal finisher with a strong run in a high class field.   Pauline Davies  scared us all by falling on the stony descent.  Pauline sensibly retired from the race but fortunately without major damage except some nasty bruises.  Pics in the gallery. 

British Masters XC (5.3 miles) 

18                    Andy Gibbs29:28
49Tom Annable31:59
50-65s (5.3m):   
102  Colin Rathbone 38:37
Ladies (~6k):   
82  Carole Williams 31:46

Strength and conditioning class – For anyone seeking a tough workout!

 

Glyn Evans is running a class on Wednesday nights (7pm – 8pm) in a farmers barn in Bostock. It is very much in line with old school training methods (sledgehammers, kettlebells, sandbags, burpees, bear crawls, being a few of the movements used) with music to compliment the exercises (rocky tracks etc.). Everyone welcome, cost is £3.50. The farm is located on the Bostock Road (A533) and if traveling from Northwich is around 400 metre's from Birch lane on the left hand side. So if you fancy having a go (if you think you’re hard enough!) contact Glyn on 07949588151 for further details.

 

15 March:   At last, some nice weather!  This years marathon runners were in action in the Spen 20 and Trimpell 20.  Pauline and Colin were following up last weeks Stafford 20 with the tough Spen race.    Both ran the same times and won the same prizes as last week!  Last we heard, they were spending their prize money in the Mobberley Arms.   Dave showed good form at Trimpell finishing in 2:10 - very promising!   Gemma, Toddy and Mary were all pleased with their performances - Mary was about 4 minutes quicker than last year.  So far it's looking good for London!  

Trimpell 20 

39                    Dave Gough2:10:53
129Gemma Barnett2:25:08
130John Todd 2:25:08
157 Mary Tavener 2:28:41 

Spen 20 

88                    Colin Rathbone2:27.31
173Pauline Davies2:48.35

At the Trafford 10k,  Gavin brought us home with a solid 33 minute run (would have been quicker if he hadn't played football on Saturday!) - there were also a couple of PBs on this flat and fast course.  Darren was spotted looking at race shoes in the shop afterwards - so look out for them (and him!) at his next race!

52                    Gavin Tomlinson33:28 
70Tom Annable35:07 PB 
98Darren Cottier36:49 
125Tom Armstrong38:31 PB 
155Dave Haines40:20 

At the picturesque Dentdale 14 race on Saturday, before the weather improved, Rob Olliver had another excellent run to finish 62nd out of a field of over 400 in a good time of 1.42.01, for the undulating course on a windy day.        

8 March:  A busy racing weekend for Vale Royal.  Big Stu and Gemma were deservedly selected to represent Cheshire at the Inter-counties XC in Nottingham on Saturday.   On a tough hilly course, Big Stu finished 191st (5th counter) and Gemma was 205th (6th counter). Both were pleased with their runs.  Stevie Stockton was 29th in Senior Ladies and Rebecca Craigie was 5th in the U17's.Also running in the juniors was Graham's son Andrew who finished in 219th place.   Results.    Closer to home, Helen Smith showed her continued progress as she finished 1st Lady in the Oulton Park 5K!  The course was about 200m long and Helen achieved a good time of 22:18.    

A smaller than usual turn-out for the Stafford 20:  In very windy and very wet weather, Pete Clayton had an excellent run in 2:13.  Colin was 1st MV65 in 2:27 in his new long socks (not quite looking as good as Nik does in hers Col!).  Pauline also ran very well, 2:48 is a big improvement on last year and 1st LV55!   There were 2 relay teams too.  Dave, Darren and Tom were not as competitive as they hoped as there was some strong competition!     Also Carole, Val and Jo E ran impressively in the bad conditions.   Not such an enjoyable day with the bad weather, traffic problems and a lack of hot drinks and cakes at the finish!  Pics in the Gallery.  

52                    Pete Clayton2:13.50
112Colin Longsocks2:27.53
225Pauline Davies2.48.06
5th TeamTom/Dave/Darren2.01.52
2nd LadiesJo E/Carole/Val

2.45.27

5 March:  Big Stu 4th in the Farndon 10k in 34:03.  Results

2 March: The tough, but increasingly popular, Cloud 9 race at Congleton attracted over 400 runners this year, including the following! Well done to all.  

40Darren Cottier1:04:56
93Joanna Marsden1:11:46
109John Todd1:12:50
116Gemma Barnett1:13:13
154Steve Smith1:16:43
182John Clarke1:18:32
258Joanne Edwards1:25:01
278Jayne Lomax1:27:27
298Paul Clutterbuck1:28:40
378Steve Bradshaw1:37:31

1 March:  Marcus finished 20th in the High Legh 10k with a time of 40:53 last weekend!  Not a career best performance but we assume he was talking food to fellow competitors throughout the race! 

24 February: Vale Royal Juniors and Seniors produce excellent performances at the National Cross Country Championships!  Only Colin Rathbone and Carole Williams, from the senior section made the trip to Parliament Hill in London to take part in the country’s most prestigious cross country race - although they were accompanied by a large number of juniors.  For anyone who thinks Cross Country is not for them, Colin described the day as follows:  ‘One of the most memorable nationals, weather was ideal, conditions perfect, good mix of mud and solid ground, plenty of lung busting hills, brilliant atmosphere on the coach, superb performances by the kids!’  

Carole had an excellent run in her first ever national to finish 507th in a large field containing the best cross country runners in England. Carole’s continuing improvement is certainly helping Colin’s running too! and he produced a fantastic performance on the day to finish 1,225th and beat one of his main rivals for the first time ever!  Both Carole and Colin benefited from the support they received from the watching juniors!  Having witnessed many superb performances from the juniors earlier in the day!

 

The highlights from the juniors were:  The U17 women taking team silver medals behind Aldershot, these were the clubs first ever national medals in this age group – an incredible performance for a club of our size competing against all the big city clubs!  Congratulations to Rebecca Craigie, Nikki Meadows, Charlotte Mills and Hannah Paver, who made up the team.  The under 13 girls team finishing 7th and the under 15 girls team finishing 11th!

In the individual races, Stevie Stockton finishing a brilliant 4th in the womens under 20 race, which was loaded with internationals and won by Stephanie Twell!  Andrew Clews continued his excellent season with a fine 14th place in the under 17 mens race.

 

16 February:   ANDY GIBBS WINS NORTHERN VETS XC CHAMPIONSHIPS!   Andy led from start to finish and won the race by a good margin.  Andy was 1st overall in the race as well as retaining his V45 title.  Well done Andy! 

15 February:   As usual there was a good turn-out for the Wrexham Half Marathon.  Conditions were not quite as good as last year with an awkward wind to contend with.   Highlight of the day was Rob ditching Dave as a pacemaker and instead judging the race to perfection as he sped to a 1:28.   Clutty ran well too considering he was trying to program his new Garmin en-route!   Pauline had blistered feet at the end but ran well for 2nd LV55.   Mary looked tired after the finish but should be happy with 3rd LV45.   Full Results.  Some photos are in the gallery.

 

16Tom Annable1.15.06 PB 
52Mike Harrington1.21.30 
57Dave Gough1.21.55 
67Pete Clayton1.22.31 
116Rob Olliver1.28.50 PB 
125Penny Thorn1.29.27 PB 
193Mary Tavener1.36.18  
206Jo Molyneaux1.37.19 
290Pauline Davies1.42.55 
295Paul Clutterbuck1.43.06 PB 

10 February: News From New Mexico updated - with news of Nicky's Latest race.  

8 February:  Colin (45:22) and Carole (53:21) in the prizes at the Nick Bier 10k in Llandudno.   After a tough XC the day before, Colin was 1st MV65 and Carole 5th LV55 - with Carole winning a £50 spot prize (Col's beer money?)

7 February:  NW XC LEAGUE FINALE:  Vale Royal in the medals at the North Wales XC league!   At a bitterly cold and tough XC at Oswestry, the men's veteran team finished 2nd overall and showed the team spirit we so long for from Vale Royal in XC racing.  Why not join us next year?   In the ladies race, Pauline Davies had a cracking run and secured 2nd overall in the LV55 league.   Carole had another good run but was pipped up the hill by her rival this time and finished in 48th place.  In the men's race, Tom had a best ever finish for 14th place and finished the season as 3rd MV40.  Graham had an excellent run for 22nd place (and an impressive sprint!), a bit below par Goffy finished in 35th place and with support from Colin (108th) and Clutty (119th), the men's team medal was secure.   Great support from Bernie and John added to a memorable day out.  Photos in the Gallery.

14 Tom Annable36:42
22  Graham Miles38:24
35 Dave Gough39:37
108 Colin Rathbone47:35
119 Paul Clutterbuck50:24
   
            36 Pauline Davies27:16
48 Carole Williams30:40

4 February:  2008 Cheshire Road Rankings top 10 here.   Nicky, James, Colin, Pauline and Mary head the 2008 age category rankings here.  Well done!    We are also competitive in the Cheshire Grand Prix series - Stu Doyle's leading the mens and it's close in the men's team competition.  Gemma's 2nd overall and the ladies team is in 3rd place.  Details & standings are here.

1 February:  Another cold and windy day for the Alsager 5!   Some superb runs for Vale Royal led, perhaps, by Carole's big PB - 42:09 from near the back of the field at the start!   A 4 minute improvement on last year!  Big Stu led us home in 49th place in 27:11 and helped the men's team to 10th place and 2nd Vet's team.  The ladies were led home by Gemma in 27th place.   Here are the other results - a few PB's in there! 

49 Stuart Doyle27:10
65 Tom Annable27:57
83 Zak Cross28:37
90 Dave "Unlucky" Gough29:01
108  Mike Harrington29:39
148 Peter Clayton30:38
210  Gemma Barnett32:07
312 Mary Tavener34:41
395 Colin Rathbone36:18
403 Paul Clutterbuck36:28
493 Joanne Edwards38:04
501 Pauline Davies38:09
566 Jayne Lomax39:23
699 Nigel Davenport41:57
706 Carole Williams42:09

 

25 January:  "Mud, mud, glorious mud" were not the first words from Mr Todd's mouth at the end of the Northern XC Champs!   Although Carole described the going as 'a bit boggy', the rest of us thought it was hell!   With Colin celebrating his 65th birthday, we got a full men's team out for the first time in a few years - finishing in 28th place.  Carole and Helen needed a few more to turn out for a full team but both still enjoyed the day (well perhaps just the beer and sandwiches at the pub after!).  A great day out and a successful one with the juniors in the medals!  Photos in the gallery......Men's Results, Ladies Results.

 

154  T Annable42:19
193   D Gough43:54
254   G Miles45:17
381  J Todd48:50
389  M Crompton49:05
507  C Rathbone53:30
561  P Clutterbuck56:56

 

128   H Whitby34:18
220  C Williams41:25

 23 January: Link to photo's of Nicky's race - now added to her blog.  News from New Mexico Updated - read about Manchester's Nicky Archer - taking part in a long distance race!

18 January:  Big Stu leads the way with an excellent 10th place in the Four Villages Half Marathon and a reduced contingent turn out for the N Wales XC league.   Reports here and photos of both events in the gallery.   Nic storms to victory in Arizona's Rock 'n' Roll Half Marathon in 1:20:23.

10 January:  A terrific day for Vale Royal at the bone-chillingly cold Cheshire XC Champs with victory in the men's and ladies senior teams as well as silver in the men's vets teams!  The mens team race was particularly close....Vale Royal triumphing over defending champions Wilmslow by a mere 3 points with positions changing throughout!   What a race!  (Men's team golds:  Big Stu, Gavin, Tom, Tom Heaward, Graham and James Griffiths. Vet's team silvers:  Tom, Graham, Dave, Toddy).   The ladies team race was also close but Gemma joined Stevie Stockton and Kate Spilsbury to win by 13 points over Wilmslow.  Bravo Vale Royal!

There were individual medals too:  Victory for Pauline in the ladies LV55 category!  Also 2nd LV55 for Carole Williams.  Silver for Tom in the MV40.  Andrew Miles's 7th place in the juniors race (team bronze) secures a Cheshire team place (and a proud dad!)  Many impressive junior performances including Andrew Clewes winning the U17 race, and Louise Towers, Megan Huxley and Nikki Meadows all winning gold in the girls' races.  Great performances and a great club turn out - thanks to all those who showed and to the organisers, helpers and supporters!   RESULTS   

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