Press Report May 14th 2023 from Nick Budd
Fell, Trail and Road races for Harriers in the second week of May.
The last Shining Tor fell race was back in 2019 before Covid trashed the racing calendar, so it was nice to see the return of this tough little fell race. Previous incarnations have been run in balmy warm spring conditions with runners just in shorts, t-shirts and sunglasses. This year’s race last Wednesday was a reminder that the hills can be an inhospitable environment – whilst not cold, the rain was lashing down, the clouds were low and it was dark and muddy, so the debate amongst the three Congleton Harriers prior to the start was whether to put the waterproofs on or keep them in the backpack and just run in vests. Harriers are hardy folk, so the latter won out, admittedly comforted by the fact that the Buxton Mountain Rescue Team was out in force (the race being a fundraiser for them).
Out of the 200 runners Char Wood was the first Harrier back making it back in just under an hour in 59:08 in 124th place and taking 1st place in the F40 category. An impressive run given the slippery conditions and the fact that this was her first time out at this race so not familiar with the challenging up and down sections. Sarah Proudmore was 170th in 66:29 and Nick Budd was 2 seconds behind in 171st place in 66:31.
Also in action on Wednesday were six Harriers, this time on the road, at the Clayton Bypass 10k. Out of the 250 runners Chris Moss was 19th in 38:37, Emily Nott was 27th in 39:38, Dean Windsor was 78th in 46:12, Bethany Cliff was 116th in 49:58, Ian Prime was 127th in 50:50 and Beth Ambler was 186th in 57:24,
There was more running on the Thursday at the unique Mow Cop Killer Mile. As its name implies a one mile dash up Mow Cop starting at Drumber Lane, Scholar Green, to Top Station Road, Mow Cop, with 550 feet of continuous climbing incorporating a leg and lung sapping 25% gradient in places. Out of the 191 runners in the main event Stuart Rider, was 15th in 8:54, Bryan Lomas, was 24th in 9:25, David Gowin, was 46th in 14:54, Helen Gowin, was 61st in 16:29, Kelly Marshall, was 66th in 12:57, Graham Cooper, was 78th in 11:17, Ellie Dick, was 99th in 12:03, Rob McDermott, was 119th in 12:39, Georgie Budd, was 120th in 12:40, Ian Prime, was 126th in 12:46.
For Bryan Lomas the Killer Mile was a hors d'oeuvre for the Eyam half marathon on Sunday which is one of his favourites, being his hometown. This is billed as a “tough race” with 1500ft ascent with particularly difficult and long ascents at mile 2 and 11. Out of the 451 runners tackling this hilly but very friendly half Bryan Lomas, was 16th in 1:31:23, Lucy Rusbridge, was 221st in 2:04:21 and Liz Smart, was 447th in 2:50:34.
Over towards Bollington there were two separate races taking place at the same time: The Happy Valley Trail 10k and the Happy Valley half marathon. 2022 was the inaugural run of the half marathon and the event put on by the Bollington Harriers is clearly becoming established with the addition of the 10k this year. The half consisted of 770m total ascent over White Nancy, Kerridge and Sponds Hill. Across a mixture of farmland, rocky descents and beautiful woodland. The 10k had the same start and end as the half marathon featuring 390m of total ascent across White Nancy and Kerridge ridge.
In the 10k, out of 68 runners Iain Thacker was 8th in 68:36, Josie Galbraith was 41st in 83:25, Christine Gilligan was 46th in 86:36, Andrea Whiteley was 60th in 1:40:04 Trish Ryan, was 61st in 1:40:04 and Petra Thacker, was 65th in 1:42:05.
In the half marathon out of 132 runners Ian Stanway was 66th in 2:22:54, Richard Blankley was 72nd in 2:24:39, Graham Cooper, was 79th in 2:26:40, Dean Windsor was 90th in 2:33:09 and Sarah-Louise Proudmore, was 91st in 2:33:10.
If interested in joining us, there are club runs on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Sunday with most runs setting off from the Congleton Tennis Club. The club is always keen to see new members whether you are a speedy racer or more of a social runner. So, if you are thinking of thinking of joining then just come along to one of the regular/ club runs for a few weeks and try us out for size; you will be made to feel more than welcome with no obligation to join. You can find full details on our Congleton Harriers website: Congleton-harriers.co.uk. You can also connect with the club on Facebook where details of club activities are posted regularly.