Report by Don Hale. Photographs courtesy of Tom Roberts, Mark Jessett and John Hatton
North Wales Road Runners staged their annual Christmas Handicap race on Llandudno promenade last Sunday morning with 19 athletes competing in a unique social-distancing, time-trial type event, due to extensive Covid-19 restrictions affecting all live sporting events.
It was the first time in many years that the event has been run along the promenade to the Welcome sign and back, after previously following a less-hillier climb from West Shore, and up to and around the old gun sites.
This year, the race was also held in relatively mild conditions, and fortunately included a brief window within the showery weather, and attracted some very good club runners, who recorded excellent finishing times on the hilly 4.6-mile course.
Runners were initially assessed by the organisers, based on 5k and recent performance times, with suitable time handicaps applied based on these results and age categories. Places were therefore later confirmed for the fastest times overall, and on age percentages.
Starting with a 7 minute 31 second handicap, Josh Keogh proved to be a worthy winner overall and soon made light of this very challenging route to run home in a fast time of 27.35, and finished 3rd with 70.94% in the age performance charts.
Tony Price-Jones grabbed 2nd place overall despite a 5 min 20 secs handicap, and finished in 31.55, with a 62.45% age performance in 12th spot. Steve Roberts was 3rd overall in 32.16, with a 5 min 10 secs handicap, and recorded a 65.86% age cat performance.
Hannah Griffith was the first lady back despite her 2 min 59 secs handicap and again showed her recent good form to finish in 35.49, and 7th overall, with a 67.38% age performance rating.
Five ladies competed, and all recorded great times, including the youngest recruit, Mia Morris, aged 15, who made her debut in this festive event, and with a near 3-minute handicap, still managed to finish in 37.22, and a 62.89% age cat.
Another teenager who also gave a very promising display was Harry Driscoll, who made a welcome return to club events, and registered a good time of 35.15.
The top age performance percentage overall however, was achieved by club chairman Kevin Slattery with 77.47%, with Kay Hatton 2nd with 74.85%, and race winner Josh Keogh 3rd with 70.94%.
Plaudits were later given to organisers Martin Green, John and Kay Hatton, together with club official Liz Driscoll, and other team members, who helped with the start, finish, and time recordings.
NWRRC Handicap results 4.6 miles (*Finish time/actual time)
- Josh Keogh 35.06/27.35 Sen Men (70.94% & 3rd).
- Tony Price-Jones 37.15/31.55 M35 (62.45% & 12th).
- Steve Roberts 37.26/32.16 M45 (65.86% & 7th).
- Stuart Culverhouse 38.04/31.34 M45 (67.32% & 6th).
- Jon Doe 38.30/32.20 M45 (65.72% & 8th).
- Ben Hudson 38.45/32.55 M40 (63.54% & 10th).
- Hannah Griffith 38.48/35.49 F45 (67.38% & 5th).
- Tony Gibson 38.54/37.14 M60 (65.71% & 9th).
- Kevin Slattery 38.56/32.46 M65 (77.47% & 1st).
- Kay Hatton 39.14/36.15 F55 (74.85% & 2nd).
- Richard Scamans 39.41/34.48 M45 (61.06% & 14th).
- Helen Hannam 39.52/38.47 F45 (61.07% & 13th).
- Daniel Owens 40.12/39.02 SM (50.09% & 19th).
- Don Hale 40.20/37.30 M65 (68.98% & 4th).
- Mia Morris 40.21/37.22 F15 62.89% & 11th).
- Harry Driscoll 41.25/35.15 SM (55.46% & 18th).
- Sarah Hudson 42.52/39.26 F40 (58.62% & 16th).
- Mike Hayton 43.54/43,54 M70 (60.17% & 15th).
- Len Jackson 44.42/43.02 M60 (57.04% & 17th).