Report by Don Hale. Photographs by Steve Jeffery
North Wales Road Runners dominated the Abergele 5k and North Wales Championships last weekend by recording a host of PBs, age category wins, and other podium placings, in addition to claiming both the male and female team prizes.
It was soon raining gold on the windswept promenade at Pensarn on Sunday as NWRRC members smashed numerous records and collected seven age category gold medals and trophies, in addition to two runners-up awards and silver medals, plus a further two bronze medals, and two prestigious team prizes.
In a very fast and highly competitive race, Scott Nixon (Cardiff AC) was the first runner home in 15 minutes 47 seconds, with Jon Bowie (Shrewsbury AC) 2nd in 15.52, and Steve Forsyth (Prestatyn) in 15.57.
Martin Green from NWRRC led a strong team of 20 club members back along the cycle track to finish 4th overall and 1st in his MV45 cat in 16.31.
His performance inspired an avalanche of superb runs from colleagues with Richard Eccles 10th and 1st MV55 winner in 17.38, and Richard equalled the NW championships record for his age group, which dated back to 2011, and was held by Edward Davies of Maldwyn set at the Shrewsbury 5k.
Martin Green’s wife Carla Green had another amazing run for 20th place overall, and she was 1st in her MW45 cat for a new golden PB of 18.56.
Stuart Culverhouse also celebrated a PB in 24th place in 19.46, with Gethin Wyn Jones 29th and 2nd in his MV35 cat in 20.23.
Jon Evans ran well to finish 30th and 3rd in his MV55 cat in 20.35, with Steve Roberts 32nd and 4th MV55 in 20.54, whilst master veteran Kevin Slattery enjoyed a magnificent run to win his MV65 age cat in 21.00 in 34th place.
Jamie Tharme was another athlete on fire, and he too claimed a great new PB of 21.03 in 35th position, and finished just behind Kevin, whilst Sarah Ferguson Hudson continued the celebrations with a PB of 22.08 to win her MW40 cat in 42nd place.
And Kay Hatton was a further podium winner claiming a silver medal in 46th place overall and 2nd VW55 cat in 22.38. Kay said it was her fastest time for about 10 years and praised the perfect conditions and her new shoes for her success.
Master veteran Rob Fryer ran extremely well but just missed out on a medal by a mere five-seconds to finish 4th in his M65 age cat but recorded an excellent time of 23.05 in 51st place.
Hannah Griffith was a few seconds behind Rob but claimed a new PB of 23.08 in 52nd spot, with another master vet Peter Armstrong winning his MV70 age cat in 53rd place with a fast time of 23.10.
Kevin Higgins finished 58th in 23.41, with Helen Hannam pleased with 60th place in 23.49, and teenager Mia Morris struck gold by winning her U17 age cat with a great showing finishing 69th overall in 25.20.
Master vet Mike Hayton was another runner who came so close to success with an impressive run, finishing 71st and 4th in his MV70 cat in 26.11, with Rachel Morris endorsing a wonderful family celebration by winning a surprise bronze medal in 88th place and 3rd in her VW40 age cat in 30.48, whilst Richard Scamans just ran the course with a friend, Sheridan Jowett, and finished 96th in 33.18. His friend however, won a trophy and finished 2nd in her MV50 cat.
Following the incredible results, club chairman Kevin Slattery confirmed: “A very successful morning for NWRRC, men’s and ladies team winners, and lots of PBs and cat wins. So well done to all finishers!”
And Helen Hannam summed-up the feelings of many runners, adding: “Pushed for sub-25, so was very pleased to get Sub-24 today against some top Welsh athletes. Lovely conditions, and a great route with great support and marshalling throughout.”
*The results placings shown relate to championship honours for gold, silver, and bronze medals.
*These are the provisional results from the Abergele 5k championship race:
Bronze medal for Jonathan Kettle in Anglesey Trail half-marathon
Report by Don Hale
Three NWRRC athletes took part in the Anglesey trail races last Sunday with Jonathan Kettle winning a deserved bronze medal in the tough half-marathon race after finishing 3rd in this prestigious and challenging event.
Jonathan fought a keen battle throughout with the eventual winner Russell Bentley (Eryri Harriers) and James Logue to claim a welcome place on the podium. The winning time was 1 hour 18 minutes and 18 seconds, with James recording 1.24.29, and Jonathan 1.28.30, and 2nd place in his MV40 age category.
Jonathan later admitted: “What a stunning route, and even though it makes racing tough when there is no one close to race, it’s good for the head, even if the body is suffering.”
Steve Bozier also tackled the gruelling half-marathon race and enjoyed a good performance to finish 21st overall in 1.39.02 and 8th in his age cat.
Charlotte-Rose Wilton-Jones completed a successful outing in the Anglesey 10k trail event and finished as the 8th female runner, 27th overall, and she was 6th in her F-Open age cat in 55 minutes 14 seconds.