Round The Walls - Chester 26 December
A quartet of hardy veterans competed in the Round The Walls race which, this year, went along the canal. John Appleton was 95th in 32.39, Pam Appleton 214 (37.59), while John Irwin and Janet Holmes ran together to finish 392 and 393 in 49.23.
Christmas Handicap - Sherdley Park 22 December
Steve Tate, Adrian Webb and Stan Erlam were the first three on handicap in the men's race while Louise Hogg, Christine Dempsey and Lyn Webb were the winners in the women's race. Unfortunately, we do not have the full results, or results from the youngster's races, although Andy Drillingcourt does have some pictures of those taking part dressed up in Santa hats.
London Marathon Places: 2008
The club has three London Marathon places which are allocated according to specific criteria, including that athletes must have been a member for at least twelve months, have their subscriptions paid up to date and have had their applications for individual entry turned down for next year's event. Both Rob Stiffin and Steve Tate have met the criteria and have been allocated two of the three club places available. Anyone else who is qualified and wishing to be considered for the outstanding entry should contact Julia Hayes without delay.
England Athletics (EA) Registration Cards: Update
A number of people have been concerned they haven't received their EA registration cards. Don't worry, as many of us anticipated, EA still haven't got their I.T. up to date and cards will not be issued until the New Year and possibly not until next year's subscriptions have been paid on 1st April 2008. As long as you have paid a subscription for 2007 are already registered with the club. In respect of subscriptions for 2008 they should be paid before 1st April 2008 (with the exception of Stan Erlam who has paid already). Reminders will be sent out in February but anyone who wants to pay before then can do so. Any queries to Phil Thomas.
Sports Centre Christmas Opening Hours
The Sports Centre and track will close at mid-day on 24 December (plenty of time to get a session in before finishing your Christmas shopping) and will reopen on Wednesday 2 January 2008. Training will continue in preparation for the County Cross Country Championships on Saturday 5 January so please contact John Irwin, Adrian Webb, Ray Vose, Andy Drillingcourt and/or Phil Thomas about your own training sessions during the Christmas period.
Of course, in the old days we used to have the Christmas Handicap on Christmas Day and a Boxing Day run the day after but that was when public transport was running, the country didn't close down for a fortnight and the January sales began on New Year's Day, apart from 1947 when the snow was so high no-one could get out of the house. Did I tell you about...? Perhaps another time when you've got an hour or two to spare!!!!!!!!!
Liverpool & District Cross Country Arrowe Park, 15 December
Karen Jarvis (99) and Chris Dickinson (114) provided backup for the six senior men who made it to the final league match at Arrowe Park, Birkenhead. In fact the first club finisher was newcomer, Danny Griffiths, who was a splendid fifth but couldn't count for the team, although he will be able to do so in the County Championships.
Ian Costello (24) and Barry Graney (25) continued their personal battle which Ian won by 19 seconds on this occasion and there was an encouraging run from Dave Twigg (34) on his return to competition after a year away. Matt Shillabeer (42), Ian White (46) and Ian Hayburn (55) completed the count which was good enough for fifth on the day and third in division one for the season.
Great Langdale 10k - 15 December
Gill Laithwaite was the second lady in this event (first veteran, though she's only 22), recording 36.02, the first lady one of Great Britain's team which won the European Junior team title in Spain last weekend.
Northern Athletics Open Indoor Meeting - Sheffield. 15 December.
Matthew Stone and Steve Moran were in action at Sheffield in the second of Northern Athletics' Indoor Meetings. Each won their 300m heats, Matthew in 37.87 and Steve in 38.37, while Steve also contested the 60 recording 7.57.
International Weekend. Glasgow and Toro 8 & 9 December.
The club provided athletes for two international contests over the weekend. On Saturday Samantha Fraser represented England Schools against Ireland, Wales and Scotland Schools at the Kelvin Hall, Glasgow, while on Sunday David Forrester led Great Britain and Northern Ireland in the European Junior Cross Country Championships at Toro in the mountains of Spain. Both came away with medals, Samantha anchoring England to victory and David leading the UK to silver in the team race.
Schools International Pentathlon - Kelvin Hall, Glasgow 8 December
Samantha Fraser repeated her fourth placing at the ESAA Championships by anchoring England to victory in the Combined Events Schools' International at Glasgow taking seventh place overall. Samantha improved her outdoor best and closed the gap on her English rivals, scoring 3017 in what is an under 16 competition but for which England select an Under 15 team. Samantha's individual event scores were 4.97 (long jump), 9.77 (hurdles), 1.56 (high jump), 11.08 (shot), 2.54.23 (800).
European Junior Cross Country Championships, Toro, Spain 9 December.
David Forrester followed up his win in the European trials at Sefton Park by finishing fourth in the European Junior Cross Country Championships at Toro in Spain where the weather was cold (should have held it in Majorca!). David passed English rival Lee Carey on the run in after suffering a bad patch in the middle of the race to lead Great Britain to the silver medal positions. This is the club's first European medal on cross country and, hopefully, together with Samantha's medal in Glasgow, will inspire other club members to put in the hard work necessary for success at these levels.
Manchester Area League Sherdley Park, 2nd December
On a bright and breezy day, interspersed by driving rain, sleet and hail, the club successfully staged a Manchester Area League match, creating some excellent results and learning valuable lessons for the Merseyside Championships which are being staged next month.
In the under 11 girls' contest Rosie Johnson(3), Danielle Webb (9) and Elisha Cain (10) earned the club second place behind Manchester, Rachel Woosey (14), Lucy Griffiths (18), Sally Ashton (29), Bethany Baxter (30) and newcomer Amy Saunders (37) completing the club's complement. This boosted the club into second place in the aggregate competition.
The Under 11 Boys were beaten by Macclesfield on the day but are joint top in the aggregate competition. Daniel Elston (5), Owen Kennedy (11) and Jonathan Causer (16) were the counters but excellent support from Ryan Houghton (18), Kieron Garrity (20), Scott Houghton (27), Callum Baxter (31) and Paul Tate (35) ensuring an excellent turn out.
Chelsea Jarvis (2), Rachel Wilcock (11), Vicky Lamb(16), Louise Hayes (24) and Becky O'Brien (28), with a final sprint, earned the under 13 girls third behind Stockport and Sale and hold that place in the aggregate competition.
Christopher Garrity was the only Under 13 boy to turn out finishing a creditable twelfth.
The under 15's are out of the team medals at the moment but are only three points and two places short of third place in the aggregate contest following their fifth placing. Jemma Shaw (6), Heather Drillingcourt (15), Natalie Garrity (19), Lauren Bradshaw (26) and Jenny Lamb (27) completing what was generally described as a "testing course".
The Under 15 Boys' showed the value of having additional runners when Danny Hughes pulled a calf muscle and limped out of the race. John Ashcroft (4), David T Griffiths (5), Jamie White (10) and Jamie Webb (17) ensured the club won the team race for the third successive race and lead the race for medals easily.
The Under 17 duo of Jake Healy(16) and Steve Clague (20) were unable to complete a team when Adam Fackey became the club's second casualty of the afternoon.
The ladies excelled themselves by taking second position, led by Sarah Charnock (5), Gemma Connolly (10), Louise Hogg (20) and Julia Eccleston (22). Karen Jarvis (26), Chris Dickinson (52) and Christine Dempsey (54) completed the course in preparation for next year's international bog snorkelling contest in August. Although not included in the results the ladies' veterans also completed the count which would have earned them sixth on the day. The seniors are now in second place overall.
As the League medals are decided on the best four out of five events (with the exception of the Under 11's which are decided on three straight races) some of the current individual positions are deceptive but those in the medal hunt include Chelsea Jarvis (who is winning the Under 13 age group), Rosie Johnson (third Under 11), Jemma Shaw (second under 15), Daniel Elston (third Under 11), John Ashcroft, David T Griffiths and Jamie White (who are second, third and fourth in the Under 15 contest). Sarah Charnock and Gemma Connolly are second and third in the ladies' contest while Karen Jarvis is the second over 45. It should make the final two races very interesting.
There were a better turn out from the senior men (especially as some of them had acted as course setters earlier in the day), Tony Smith (16), Steve Tate (50), Peter Johnson (55), Billy Mousdale (96) and Tony Raffle (121) completed the course but again failed to finish a team. I'm not certain about the accuracy of the senior men's results so any clarification would be welcome.
The match could not gone ahead without the course setting from John Irwin, Ian White, Colin Spark, Patricia Spark, Ian Hayburn, Barry Graney, Ray Vose, Peter Johnson, Steve Tate and Paul Tate. John Appleton provided the first aid cover, Pam Appleton was a timekeeper, marshalling was provided by Loz Jarvis, Michael Hughes, Mrs "I gave up golf for this" Wilcock, Mr "The golf was cancelled" Wilcock, Mrs Woosey, Mr Connolly, Tony Raffle, Greg Williams, Dorothy Fairhurst, Paul Forrester, Susan "Looks good in Yellow" Clague, Jane Ashcroft, Sue Lowrie, Mr Healy and Colin Spark. I'm not sure what Phil Thomas did but he got drenched along with everyone else while Patricia Spark acted as results runner. If anyone has been overlooked please let me know immediately.