Tuesday, 29 September 2009

Rab mountain marathon, Howgill Fells

This event is still relatively new to the mountain marathon timetable, but is growing rapidly - with around 500 runners descending on the pleasant town of Sedbergh last Friday night. A superb cloud inversion heralded a great day on the Saturday, with the usual intriguing route choice options requiring full concentration and a great deal of hard running and climbing throughout the six hours available. The checkpoints were spread across the range, from just below the summit of The Calf to featureless moorland near Tebay Service Station. A sun-drenched campsite near Cautley Spout waterfall offered a welcome opportunity to rest and chat before setting off again on Sunday: not to mention a highly controversial opportunity to refuel with burger and chips at a nearby cafe - only the purists refused! Chris and Fenella Higgins were competing as a team in the mixed vet category, with Huw Lewis and partner in the Vets, and Simon Roberts competing solo in the Senior Males (the Rab is the only MM to allow solo competitors, but doesn't give them a seperate category, it just mixes them up with the pairs). The second day dawned misty and stayed cloudy throughout, but more superb running and tricky decision making throughout. One classic mountain marathon moment saw me poised above a big valley with 30 minutes to go, desperately trying to decide whether I could squeeze in two horrendously difficult controls at the bottom of a deep valley - the sort of dilemma that defines these events. In the end I opted to play it safe, but missed a podium place as a result! At the end of the two days, Chris and Fenella finished 23rd in the mixed vets with 180 pts overall. Huw and partner finished 22nd in the vets with 345 points, while Simon Roberts finished 7th senior male with 455 points.

Monday, 28 September 2009

Cross Country at Colwyn Bay - Sat 26th - Result

What a result! A huge thank you to everybody who ran and congratualtions on an excellent result. 6 ladies and 11 men is impressive with some impressive perfomances too. A great start to the season, if we can keep it up we could get promoted back to div 1.

And we had one of those excellent Buckley Runners moments - sitting on the grass in the park after the race drink tea in the sunshine. Good company, just relaxing, absolutley great.

Next race is Telford on 10th - at Lilleshall I think.

Ladies Race
12th Erika Robinson 18m28s
24th Dawn Urquhart 19m41s
45th Jane Lindley 21m12s
67th Margaret Ludden 22m47s
74th Sue Ridings 23m24s

Mens Race

34th Matthew Rose ?
72nd Daniel Hollingsworth 36m42s
76th Les Coathup 36m50s
83rd Dave Boothroyd 37m09s
93rd James Pickering 38m00s
103rd Paul Donoghue 38m37s
125th Pete Roberts 40m04s
133rd Chris Willman 40m40s
157th John Morris 42m29s
177th Rob Mackey 47m51s

Posted by Rob. Thanks to Dawn for the results.

Thursday, 24 September 2009

More on John Pares' Commonwealth Ultra Champs

Race Report Commonwealth 24 Hour Championship (John Pares, Buckley Runners and Wales)

The first ever Commonwealth Ultra Distance and Mountain Running Championship was held in Keswick, England, on 17th to 20th September. There were four events: two hill races, a 100km race and my event, the 24 hour race. All were being trialled for inclusion in the main Commonwealth Games in 2018.

The pre-race favourite was Martin Fryer of Australia with a PB of 155 miles. Other strong contenders were: Chris Finnill (England) and Jo Blake (Australia) both with 151 miles, Stephen Mason (Scotland) with 149 miles and Jim Rogers (England) and myself, both with 147 miles.

I went into the race the best prepared I’d ever been, both mentally and physically and had hopes of a medal. I’d completed over 1,500 miles in 14 weeks of training and had completed three training runs of 40, 50 and 60 miles respectively. Much of it had been over hilly terrain in North Wales, where I live, and Zurich (Switzerland) where I work most weeks. It had been a gruelling schedule to fit in around work and family. While in Zurich my life was generally: Wake – run – eat – work – run – eat – work - sleep (repeat!). I’d also spent a lot of time getting mentally prepared as this event has a lot to do with mind over matter and how to keep going when you are physically exhausted and your body is just crying out for rest.

The course in Keswick was perfect and consisted of a 1km lap of Fitz Park. This may seem boring to most people but it was ideal for us as the support, food and drink were never far away and the other runners were all within reach. This last point was important as this is a very social event – the ultrarunning community is quite small and close, and everybody supports everybody else, even their closest competitors.

The early leader was Jo Blake, a natural 100km runner, who had decided to go off fast and then take it a bit easier in the second half. Chris Carver (England) also started quickly. However, early pace and position generally has no relevance to the final outcome of these races. I felt very good myself, apart from a stiff neck and shoulders (thanks to Sharon Woods for a massage before and during the race which helped ease it off), and started slightly quicker than my target pace. By midnight the order was Blake, Pares, Fryer with Carver and Mason very close. John Pearson (Australia) Pat Robbins (England), Guy Gilbert (Canada) and Jim Rogers were also in the mix. Most of us were using a combination of run and walk to kep up a decent pace but also to allow for some rest.

The walk breaks were also important for eating and drinking. My intake was mashed potato, custard, jelly, rice-crispie squares, mars bars as well as water, coke and energy drinks. Dic Evans, of Aberystwyth, was my ‘corner’ and he did a great job of keeping me fed and watered but also focused and motivated.

At around 7pm I stopped to put on a long-sleeve shirt and have a neck and shoulder massage. At midnight I had a massage on my legs and picked up my i-pod to listen to some music. Unfortunately I felt cold leaving the massage table and struggled to maintain my pace. The music was too much of a distraction and I got rid of the i-pod by 3am. These early hours of the morning were my worst period. I had been closing on Blake who had slowed but the others were also closing on me. By dawn there was less than 3km between second and fifth (Fryer, Blake, Pares, Carver, Mason) and I knew that I would have to work hard for the medal. A 5am bowl of porridge helped get me going.

By now my legs were really sore and, following a discussion with Dic, I decided to stop for another massage. It was a risk, as I would lose at least one lap and the sight of me lying on the treatment table could have been a real boost for my competitors. This was a really painful massage and I was yelping out loud as the physio poked and prodded all the lumps in my legs and hips. When I got off the table I could hardly walk and thought, “oh no – big mistake.” I started walking, then jogging and finally running and then started to flow, the massage had been a success after all. I started to open a gap on the athletes behind but, having got within 2 minutes of Blake, he suddenly woke up and took off. Stephen Mason also found some new energy during the morning and kept very closely in touch, bringing the gap down to less than 3km at one point.

For the final few hours I kept my mind on maintaining third place. We decided I needed a 3km gap with 1.5 hours to go and I would be OK. Mason un-lapped himself again and I just hung on the back of him so he couldn’t do it again. Eventually his challenge waned and, by 10.30 I was 5km ahead and going strong. Carver was some way behind, Blake had pulled 5km clear and Fryer was chasing a new Commonwealth record.

The last hour was superb. Much of the Welsh team had appeared during the morning and they were now cheering me on. I wanted to make my target of 150 miles and, with 30 minutes to go I needed another 3 laps. At this point Dic told me there was a difference between the electronic and manual lap-counting and I might need another 5km. I found some renewed bounce in my legs and set off, managing to time my run to just finish the 5km with seconds to spare. The added bonus was that I finished just over the start line, where all the crowds were, waving the Welsh flag and it felt like I was actually winning the race.

I collapsed into a seat and burst into tears – I had won a commonwealth Bronze Medal. This was definitely the height of my running career so far. It was a good personal best distance and will probably put me in the top 10 of the World Rankings this year.

I was then able to enjoy the rest of the weekend – watching the finish of the 100km race on Saturday and even climbing up the hill to watch the mountain race on Sunday (unfortunately Wales just missed out on a team bronze). The medal ceremony on Sunday night was one of the best experiences of my life. I enjoyed every minute and the whole team looked great in the new kit (thanks to new sponsors Under Armour). Also special thanks to Arwel Lewis of Eryri (Team Manager) and Andy Walling (Physio).

Result (http://www.cumbriacommonwealthchampionships.org/)


Gold: Martin Fryer Australia 159.0375 miles
Silver: Jo Blake Australia 154.7948 miles
Bronze: John Pares Wales 151.8559 miles


Gold: Sharon Gayter England 140.7403 miles
Silver: Vicky Skelton England 132.1615 miles
Bronze: Susannah Harvey-Jamieson Australia 128.6171 miles


Men Women

1. Australia 1. England
2. England 2. Australia
3. Scotland 3. Scotland


John Pares (T: 07713 793520, E: johnpares@tiscali.co.uk)
Ty Gwyn
Cilcain Road

Wednesday, 23 September 2009

Cross Country at Colwyn Bay - Sat 26th

Don't forget the first race in the XC season is on Saturday. It would be great to make a strong start to the season, we need as many runners out as possible. We know we are missing a number of people who are at other, bigger, events, so we need you.

We will car-share to save parking, fuel, the planet etc. And to make it more enjoyable. Please meet in the car park in Northop (the one in the middle of the village - not the college) at 12.30 and we will sort out lifts.

See you there.


Saturday, 19 September 2009

John Pares - superstar!

John has just taken the bronze medal at the commonwealth 24hour race in Keswick posting a peronal best of 244.377 km (=152 miles)

Truly amazing

congratulations John.

There seems to be a problem with the official timing but see this website for the results

Wirral Multi Terrain - Race 3, Thurstaston - 15 Sept

The weather was better, the run on the beach was worse ......

The third race in the series took runners onto the beach which was a combination of soft sand and pebbles (twice) followed by a mile along the Wirral Country Way.

147 men and 54 ladies took part, the results for the Buckley team are:

Pete 50th 33.54 (First in age category)
Paul D 72nd 34.54
John M 100th 36.57
Rob 132nd 40.41
Sue 40th female place 44.01

Tuesday, 15 September 2009

Lake Vyrnwy - Remembering Doug - Half Marathon - 13 September

Well done to the three Buckley Runners who took part:

Steve Bellis 1.37.05
Ian Jones 1.48.36
Suzanne Brierley 2.20.27

posted by Sue

Stretton Skyline

As long fell races go, the Stretton Skyline is a fairly gentle and civilised affair - taking in all the scenic hills that encircle the town of Church Stretton in Shropshire. It's 19 miles, but with a relatively small amount of climbing (4500ft) up Long Mynd (twice!), Ragleth, Caer Caradog and The Lawley. Simon Roberts came 12th (I think!) in the race on Sunday, missing the 3 hour barrier by one minute. Perfect sunny weather and an excellent friendly event with around 100 runners from many different clubs and areas.

Sunday, 13 September 2009

Dyfi 8 - Saturday 12 September

The race was held from the Tan y Coed Picnic site between Corris and Machynlleth. The course was approximately 8 miles run soley on forest roads rising continously for 3 miles, dropping down fo a mile around a ridge before climbing again for a mile and then downhill to the finish.

Thankfully in the heat of the day a lot of the route was in the shade of the trees. The views in the parts of the race were stunning. The race was well marked, two much needed water stations and wonderful tea and cake afterwards.

29 runners took part, Jack Thomas finished 15th in 1.09.19 and Sue Ridings 25th in 1.25.48. Both picking up a prize of a 'micro fibre' sports towel for their efforts. Special prize of the day went to a gentleman called Tom in the Vet 85 category - 2hrs 14 mins

The event was organised by Brenda Roberts from Bro Dysynni who was disappointed with only 29 runners, we tried to assure her it was a race worthwhile continuing and we would spread the word.

Posted y Sue

Wirral Multi Terrain - Race 2, Harrison Drive, 8 Sept

The weather was a complete contrast to the previous week, in fact it was awful, very windy and rainy, most runners sat in their cars until the last minute, However at 7pm the beach suddenly filled up with just over 200 runners for the second race of the series. The route took us along the beach, over the dunes and back again. Luckily the wind was behind us on the return leg.

Buckley men has a full team for the evening, finishing in 13th out of 40 teams. Individual results:

Dave Boothroyd 45th (29.36)
Huw Lewis 49th (29.47)
Paul Donaghue 70th (31.03)
Pete Roberts 74th (31.26)
John Morris 97th (32.37)

149 men in total ran and Pete was first in his age category.

Sue was 46th lady out of 57 runners in 40.12

Posted by Sue

Thursday, 10 September 2009

Llyn Brenig Multi Terrain Race - 5 September

Three Buckley Runners entered the 9 mile Llyn Brenig race on Saturday afternoon. The route takes you round the lake and across the dam to finish. Jez Brown (2nd race in 24 hours) was first home in 5th place in 56.43, Jack Thomas 77.59 and Sue Ridings 87.18. All three being first in their respective age categories.

Wirral Multi Terrain - Royden Park

Huw, John, Pete and Sue competed in the first of the Wirral Multi Terrain races on 1 September. 148 men and 67 women took part. The 4.69 mile course was virtually all off road, two laps with a slight climb over sandstone rocks to a view at Thuraston overlooking the Dee. First home for Buckley in the men's race was Huw (34th) 33.20, Pete (48th) 34.33 and John Morris (81st)in 36.42. Sue was 42nd lady in a time of 44.10.

Monday, 7 September 2009

Deeside Off-road Series

0ff Road Grand Prix” Race No4 3rd September 2009

A slightly dissapointing night with fewer runners than for other races in the series and fewer awards than previous years. But numbers were down for all clubs - turnout was well below the average, perhaps a lot of people still in holiday mode and two events on the following day both of which we well attended by Buckley Runners.

However there were some good results on the night so we kept the Buckley flag flying: -
7th Jez Brown in 28:50
22nd Stephen Bellis in 33:37
27th Paul Donoghue in 34:12
28th Paul Stinton in 34:19
52nd Margaret Ludden in 40:28

And some good results in the series too: -
2nd Senior Men Jez Brown 18pts
1st Male Vet 55 Stephen Bellis 61pts
3rd Lady Vet 45 Margaret Ludden 169pts

Posted by Rob - who wasn't there either!!!!

Saturday, 5 September 2009

Nesscliffe Nasty Saturday 5th

The Nesscliffe Nasty has a new route - it is nastier than the old one. When asked if he approved John Morris said "Excellent, it sorted the fell runners from the speed on the flat brigade". The new route includes a set of steps up to the top of the hill and a steep plunge back down. The climb is exciting as the rock climbers on our left wonder why, and we peer over the 100 foot drop to our right as we climb.A great improvement on the old route.

As you would expect from Oswestry it was very well organised. The course was well marked and marshalled, first aid was in the right place and the tea and food was plentiful and cheap. The results service was excellent, prizes were given out almost before the queue for tea and cakes had dissappeared and copies of the results sheets were passed around while the prizes were being given out. Full marks to Oswestry Olympians.

And the results for Buckley. Five of us turned up: -
Pete Roberts 18th in 38.39 (1st M65)
John Morris 32nd in 41.33 (3rd M65)
Chris Higgins 35th in 42.00
Dawn Urquart 37th in 42.23 (4th lady and prize as senior lady I think)
Rob Mackey 59th in 46.30 (2nd M60)
Fenn Higgins 60th in 46.37 (5th female)

Another good day out. Well done everybody

Posted by Rob

Wednesday, 2 September 2009

Cilcain mountain race

Results not yet out for the Moel Famau (Cilcain show) race on Bank Holiday monday, but one fact can be stated with certainty: yet another excellent turnout from Buckley for this most local of local fell races. Results usually come through on the Show's website (if memory from previous years serves me right), although it's anyone's guess when this might be. Seemed a stronger field than last year, so first finisher Simon Edwards did well to sneak into the top 10 (or thereabouts!). Simon R was a couple of places back, closely followed by some very strong finishes from the likes of Dave Boothroyd, Steve Bellis, Paul Stinton, Shaun Hoosen, James Pickering, Rob M, the Higgins, Jack Thomas and no doubt several others (let me know if I missed anybody!) - Simon R.

Tuesday, 1 September 2009

Dates for your diaries

Please can you note these dates and put them in yourdiary.

The leagues are very important. In the Borders we have aposition to maintin and even go one better! The cross country we need to get back to Division One. We have the talent to do it. So come along and run for your club the club. First Race is only 3 weeks away.

And think of the money you can save. League races are free to enter! At £5 per race that is £60 over a season. At £10 per race that is £120. Bargain!!!!! See you there.

Nearer the time we will do some organising to share cars.

Sunday 18 October 09 Chester Tri
Sunday 15 November 09 Wallasey
Sunday 3 January 10 Tattenhall
Sunday 14 February 10 Abergele
Sunday 14 March 10 Wrecsam Tri
Sunday 11 April 10 Prestatyn
Wednesday 28 April 10 Deestriders (inc presentation evening).

NW Cross Country League dates and venues for 2009/2010

Saturday 26th November 09 Colwyn B
Saturday 10th October 09 Telford (Lilleshall??)
Saturday 21st November 09 Bangor
Saturday 16th January 10 Wrexham
Saturday 6th February 10 Oswestry (inc presentation)

North Wales Cross Country Championships

Saturday 9th January 2010 at Rhug Estate, Corwen

Buckley Runners AGM Thursday 28th January (venue to be agreed)

Posted by Rob Mackey