Report by Don Hale
Five determined athletes from North Wales Road Runners braved extreme temperatures and made another border crossing to the seaside town of Southport last Sunday to compete in the half-marathon.
Staged in very hot and humid weather, this popular event attracted 1083 finishers for the half-marathon race, and nearly 400 more for the 10k dash, yet despite the heat, two NWRRC athletes still celebrated course PB times.
Stuart Culverhouse was the first club man home in 127th place in a superb time of 1 hour 34 minutes and 37 seconds, but afterwards he admitted: “I really struggled out there today in the humid conditions.”
Kelly-Marie Alford continued her return to form in 614th position overall in 2.02.17. She was also affected by the heat and humidity and explained:
“It was so hot. I also developed a massive blister on my toe. It was such a hard race, and I had hoped to dip under two hours, but it wasn’t to be.”
Mandy Owen was almost literally hot on the heels of Kelly finishing 695th in 2.06.35, and she recorded an incredible 11-minute course PB.
Celebrating afterwards, Mandy said: “Well, we made it one piece. It was awfully hot out there, and an awfully boring course. I stopped at every water station, and it wasn’t pretty at all.”
Kelly’s partner Cai Roberts enjoyed a buggy-free run this week which obviously made such a massive improvement to his overall finishing time of 2.07.06 in 707th place, and he was less than a minute behind Mandy with a strong finish.
Meanwhile, Mandy’s husband Charlie Owen kicked his soccer refereeing duties into touch for a welcome day out, and he too deserved plaudits, with a course PB by a minute and a half, finishing in 2.38.01 for 1022nd place.
Speaking about Charlie’s excellent run, Mandy added: “Well done to Charlie. A one-and-a-half-minute course PB on a really hot day. His training has taken a back seat the last couple of months due to refereeing starting up again. And he has had a couple of niggles, so he did extremely well.”
*The full race details are available vis this link: