Report by Don Hale
Road Runner Carla Green starred for Wales in an international 10k race last weekend and finished second in her respective age category during a controversial Home-Nations tournament at Tenby.
Carla turned in a spectacular performance and put her recent injury woes behind her to claim 2nd place in her FV50 section, whilst club colleague Richard Eccles unfortunately faced disqualification with others following a mix-up over alleged misdirection towards the finish of his 5k race which involved 199 starters, with much criticism later aimed at the event organisers.
Carla ran home in 53rd place overall and she was 13th female in the 10k race in 41 minutes 42 seconds among 388 entrants, whilst her husband Martin Green enjoyed another strong showing in the half-marathon finishing 17th overall and 6th MV45 in 1.18.56.
Meanwhile, Kay Hatton displayed her remarkable consistency by finishing 173rd in the same half-marathon, and she was 8th in her FV55 cat in 1.49.13, among a field of 705.
In the 5k, Cheryl Frost confirmed her pedigree with a solid run in 22.34 to finish 64th overall out of 199 entrants, and 6th in her F55 age cat.
Richard Eccles faced a traumatic experience whilst competing with members of a chasing pack in the same race, and said he was misdirected, and later ended up being disqualified despite running a fast time of 18.55.
Event organisers at this small seaside town were faced with the unenviable task of hosting this prestigious running festival which included a 5k, 10k, plus a half and full marathon, with about 1,200 elite runners competing for England, Ireland, Scotland and Wales, but later became embroiled with numerous complaints from athletes concerning the lack of basic facilities, and some chaotic scenes at a couple of races.
Richard explained: “I was one of 28 runners sent on the wrong route at the finish and went from a top placing place to a DQ. It was chaos at the end with runners heading towards the finish from opposite ends of the road.
“An announcement just pointed out that marshals were not responsible for directing, and that runners should follow the signs. I have chalked it down to experience, but doubt Wales will want me back.”
Carla Green also confirmed some chaotic scenes at Tenby. “Yes, it was! Plus, there were no portable loos, as they forgot to order them! And the marathon was late starting, and the clock had started for well over a minute before they set them off! They rectified it after a few minutes though.”
*These are the provisional results from the Tenby Running Festival:
Podium places and medals for Road Runners at Fairy Freckled Cow Trail race
Report by Don Hale
It was a great turnout of experienced club athletes and a few social endurance runners at the very tough Fairy Freckled Cow 10.7k trail race last Sunday morning.
The Road Runners entered eight members and collected four podium places and a few PBs, in addition to several North Wales Trail championship medals, at one of the most challenging trail races in the region around Alwen Reservoir.
Despite spectacular views, this race followed a gruelling and very hilly course, with the event eventually won by James Yarwood (Abergele Harriers) in 40 minutes 21 seconds.
He was followed by Stephen Skates (Prestatyn RC) in 41.15 and Ian Edwards (Eryri Harriers) 3rd in 41.24.
The Ladies race was won by Amie Bagnall (Cheshire Dragons) in 44.26.
Stuart Culverhouse was the first NWRRC man home with a determined display in 21st place in 46.32, and he also claimed the 3rd spot place in his MV50 age cat.
Nicola Wylie meanwhile, repeated her recent top form to claim 2nd place in her FV50 cat, and finished 43rd overall in 55.59.
Kevin Higgins was also on fire again, and he made light work of the course to finish 56th, and 5th MV60 cat in 59.08, and Hannah Griffith enjoyed another fine performance in 62nd place and 3rd FV45 in 60.54.
Master veteran Don Hale snatched a new course PB with his fourth race of the week whilst building back fitness, and he finished 74th, and 4th in his last-ever MV65 cat in 65.54. Fellow vet Mike Hayton claimed a deserved bronze medal in 3rd spot in his MV70 cat finishing in 77th place overall in 66.30. This was also his third podium place in successive races this week.
And Helen Hannam battled her way around the course and was pleased to finish in 80th place in 67.11, with Sue Smith celebrating another gritty performance in 94th in 76.18.
Plaudits were later given to the race organisers, all the volunteers and marshalls, and to Welsh Water and Natural Resources Wales for the use of this dramatic route.
*This is the provisional results list from the Fairy Freckled Cow Trail race:
Brave NWRRC endurance athlete Karl Morris completed the Pen Llyn 75-mile race over the weekend, but said he made a few errors and ended up doing 83 miles instead!
Karl eventually ran 83.53 miles in 21 hours and 21 minutes and his challenging route including 3,386m of elevation. He later explained: “I forgot an honesty book page, so I had to track back a mile, and then had to hunt for toilets in Nefyn.
“I even managed to get lost in a farmer’s field. Oh well, a great day and I got to run along some of the best coastal path routes anywhere in the UK. Finished 7th in the end. The marshalls’ and volunteers did a great job.”
NWRRC athlete Elizabeth Driscoll competed at the Llanrwst Sprint Triathlon on Sunday and easily won her F50 age cat with a stunning performance at her first event with a new carbon bike.
Bumper turn-out at Felinheli for return of 10k race
Report by Don Hale
The Ras Gwyl Felinheli Festival 10k race returned with a bumper turn-out last Wednesday as nearly 250 top club and social runners took part in this challenging event on a warm and near perfect evening.
Delayed since 2019 due to numerous pandemic restrictions, this is probably one of the toughest half-marathons in North Wales with competitors having to battle a very challenging course and run mainly off-road, and along numerous steep trails, and through dense woodland.
The overall race proved very tight at the sharp end with Adam Jones from event hosts Eryri Harriers, eventually taking the honours to win in 32 minutes and 57 seconds, with Tomos Jones (Meirionyydd RC), 2nd in 33.14, and Ifan Dafydd 3rd in 32.26.
The Ladies race winner was Anna Bracegirdle (Sale Harriers) in 32.26, and there were deserved plaudits to promising local youngster Noa Vaughan (Eryri Harriers) who ran extremely well to claim 4th place in 33.56.
The North Wales Road Runners turned out in force again with 28 club members involved and despite keen rivalry from many experienced fell and trail athletes, they still managed to claim five podium places including one outright victory from Carla Green.
Carla won her F50 age cat in 56th place overall as the 6th female runner and put in a tremendous performance just days before her international call-up in the Home-Nations tournament in Tenby.
Josh Keogh was the first NWRRC member home in 6th place overall in 34.45, with Jonathan Kettle 10th in 35.58 and he also claimed 2nd spot in his MV40 age cat, whilst Mark Jessett ran his socks off to settle in 13th place in 36.45.
It was good to see Rory Middleton back in action again in 18th place in 38.41, with Iwan Evans 26th in 40.26, and Stuart Culverhouse finishing just behind Iwan in 27th position, but he grabbed second MV50 in 40.47.
Gethin Wyn Jones ran well again 36th place in 42.32, and Steve Roberts was just nine-seconds behind him in 37th spot in 42.41. Ben Hudson, despite his recent ultra-efforts, was a further eight-seconds adrift in 43.49.
Carla Green meanwhile ran home as the 6th female runner in 56th place overall and won her F50 age cat in 45.09.
Newcomer Adam Lamalle turned in another positive run on his second outing and claimed a new 10k PB, finishing 68th in 46.23, and Nicola Wylie finished 2nd in her F50 age cat to Carla in 47.34 in 87th place.
Sarah Hudson finished 103rd in 48.24, and Cai Roberts posted another excellent PB run in 106th place in 48.39, with his partner Kelly Alford battling the after-effects of ill-health to claim 131st place overall in 51.38.
Rob Fryer celebrated an injury-free run in 132nd place in 51.39 and was just one-second behind Kelly, whilst his club colleague Kevin Higgins seems to improve with every race, and he seemed pleased with his time of 51.55 on this difficult course for 137th place.
Hannah Griffith also confirmed her rapid improvement with another strong run, finishing 138th in 51.58, with Elizabeth Driscoll clocking 52.16; whilst Tessa Bushnell was 161st in 53.45.
Helen Hannam came 169th in 54.18, and Vicky Taylor and master vet Don Hale had a cat and mouse tussle, with Vicky finishing in 185th place in 56.43, and Don just one place behind in 57.03.
And all credit to fellow master vet Mike Hayton, deserved 2nd MV70 in 58.43 in 196th place.
Gwennan Charlton put in a gritty performance in 219th place in 1.03.10, and Sue Smith ran well to finish in 226th place in 1.03.50, and she was followed by Rachel Morris in 1.06.25, with Sue’s husband Mike Smith 237th in 1.06.56.
*Link to the provisional results from the Ras Gwyl Felinheli 10k:
Steve Forsyth first at bright and breezy Conwy Parkrun
Report by Don Hale. Photos by Steve Jeffery
It was bright and breezy for 179 finishers at Conwy Parkrun last Saturday with numbers heavily depleted due to several fixture clashes, or athletes recovering from some midweek exertions.
Ten Road Runners took part with Steve Forsyth first-placed finisher in 18 minutes dead, to also claim the top-spot in his MV40 age cat.
Steve just managed to hold off a strong challenge from promising youngster Math Thomas (Menai Track & Field) who was the runner-up with a fine performance in 18.23, and the winner of his JM15-17 cat, with Dave Hughes 3rd with a PB in 18.30.
The NWRRC team claimed three other age cat wins and Will Williams, 5th overall, also won his MV45 cat with a new PB of 18.54. And Steve Mason was back on home ground again and finished 8th overall and 3rd MV45 in 18.54, with Gethin Wyn Jones 14th in 20.42.
Martin Green had an easy jog around the 5k route as he was preparing for his international race on Sunday and placed 16th in 20.48. Dave Spofforth was 17th and 2nd MV40 in 20.52.
Karen Butler continued her impressive form to win her VW60 age cat, finishing 70th overall in 25.59, with master vet Rob Fryer 82nd in 27.08, and newcomer John O’Shea 87th with a new PB of 27.28, whilst Rachel Morris was 144th in 33.55.