Category Archives: 10km

Coxhoe Trail Run, Sunday, September 3, 2017

Conrad White

There was a mass of striders out for the Coxhoe multi terrain trail race – approximately 20% of the field. A local friendly run around the trails of Coxhoe. The course starts downhill (and if you plan on doing this race in the future – remember you will be doing this in reverse on the way back – and some more) then up to a good trail on the disused railway path and into and around the quarry on good firm stony tracks. There are a couple of well marshalled road crossings. The quarry section has a brief downhill, then a sharp (quite unfriendly for my un hill trained legs) ascent and then a bit of an uphill drag – at the top of which is the “half way” marker. (much relief).

I had strider (Dan) in my sights for most of the first half and briefly overtook him on the downhill section of the quarry, only to be passed on the return on the railway path – he was well ahead at the end. Thanks for spurring me on Dan! The last kilometre includes the uphill we came down on the way out, and a bit more, with a sharp turn and into a clearing and the finish which is just above where you start so, if you want and are able, you can cheer on incoming runners.

Striders were again represented in the prizes with Fiona first lady and Sarah and myself getting age category prizes (varying sizes of trophy). There is a chocolate bar and water at the end and a T shirt at registration. What is there not to like?

Results
posNamebibTimeCatClub
1Robert Everson14036:13Mens OverallDurham City Harriers
28Fiona Jones2546:09Womens 35+Elvet Striders
6Chris Callan10238:07Mens OverallElvet Striders
10Michael Anderson10340:19Mens OverallElvet Striders
22Daniel Mitchell5245:03Mens 40+Elvet Striders
23Conrad White15245:26Mens 60+Elvet Striders
30Richard Hockin3546:58Mens 60+Elvet Striders
34Phillip Connor9747:29Mens OverallElvet Striders
39Sarah Davies15448:59Womens 50+Elvet Striders
52Jean Bradley5652:10Womens 60+Elvet Striders
60Helen Parker5953:52Womens 35+Elvet Striders
66Lyne Stobart7454:29Womens 35+Elvet Striders
69Jan Young5455:15Womens 50+Elvet Striders
76Stephen Ellis2856:05Mens 60+Elvet Striders
77Jane Ives8956:08Womens 35+Elvet Striders
81Lesley Hamill14156:32Womens 35+Elvet Striders
86Alison Heslop4557:17Womens 35+Elvet Striders
89Tina Taylor11157:49Womens 35+Elvet Striders
91Anna Mason2057:54Womens 35+Elvet Striders
96Kimberley Wilson8558:50Womens OverallElvet Striders
97Nicola Dorricott14759:01Womens 50+Elvet Striders
101Jenny Search14259:33Womens 35+Elvet Striders
108Jane Dowsett5560:14Womens 35+Elvet Striders
109Carole Thompson-Young8060:14Womens 50+Elvet Striders
110Becks Lippe960:14Womens 35+Elvet Striders
111Alan Scott1860:47Mens 50+Elvet Striders
127Aileen Scott1763:46Womens 35+Elvet Striders
134Helen James3066:03Womens OverallElvet Striders
136Stan White1966:44Mens 50+Elvet Striders
141Helen Wilkes12669:30Womens 35+Elvet Striders
147Sophie Dennis9873:48Womens OverallElvet Striders

Trail Outlaws – Washington Trail 10k, Washington, Tyne & Wear, Sunday, April 23, 2017

10k

Jonathan Hamill

Trail Outlaws – Washington Trail 10k

Photo courtesy of Hippie Nixon Photography, and others courtesy of LK Photography.

Billed as a challenging trail race, which shows off some of Washington’s hidden trails, it is part of a series of races organised by Trail Outlaws. I had some unfinished business from my first attempt in 2016.  What struck me then, and is still true today is the friendly, and efficient organisation – from marshalled car parking at Biddick Academy, efficient registration, to a superbly marked and marshalled course, with refreshments both en route, and post-race, it certainly ticks the boxes.

 

At registration, runners were issued with buffs – and I picked up the t-shirt which I’d pre-ordered.  I decided not to don the buff on account that the weather was rather pleasant.

 

Starting in the James Steel Park, the route follows a trail along the River Wear before looping back to Cox Green.  What follows are some other ‘lesser known secret trails’ and then eventually back over the bridge to the final delight – the last hill to the finish.

 

I set off at a decent pace, secure in the knowledge that the hills would calibrate my enthusiasm – they did!  Undeterred, I decided my strategy was simply to run as hard as I could, keeping back something mentally, if not physically for the dreaded last hill.  There were a few bottlenecks, and I decided to vault (ok, well half vault) a fence beside a style which I think gained me a whole 4 seconds.  I was really pleased to see Kerry at her marshalling point as I emerged across a field, uphill, and incapable of discussion.

 

Galvanised from the sight of a fellow purple warrior, I pressed on along the flat, and it was all going well, until Dead Dog Woods (around 7km in), when I landed awkwardly on my right foot (ice treatment to follow!).  As I ran along the River to the footbridge at Cox Green, all I could think about was the dreaded last hill.  Finally, it had its chance, and it well and truly knocked the wind out of my sails – fortunately, the worst bit is at the bottom, and it flattens out towards the finish, which allowed me to look more as if I was running at that point.

 

I set out thinking that an improvement on my time in 2016 was on the cards, and I was delighted to secure a ~8 plus minute course PB.

 

Taking place on St George’s Day, we were briefed by Sir Tim Bateson, who later handed out prizes in his fitting attire for the day.  I’m not sure if the green dragon won a prize but our Louise Warner placed 2nd lady!

 

Through the finish, I collected my medal (dog tag), and some goodies, including wrist bands, and a sticker before having some water with a dash of cordial!

 

A fantastic local race, which I’d recommend to anyone but be quick – it was a sell out!  We had a good contingent of Striders present, and some fantastic achievements, including Katharine Goda – her first race, not an easy one but a stonking time!

 

Bib Runners Club Race Time Category Position Gender Pos Age Cat Pos
14 Michael Barker Sunderland
Harriers & AC
00:39:14 M 1 1 M 1 M
393 Mark Warner Elvet Striders 00:43:24 M 6 6 M 6 M
45 David Brown Elvet Striders 00:46:51 M 16 16 M 13 M
392 Louise Warner Elvet Striders 00:49:54 F 29 2 F 2 F
155 Katharine Goda Elvet Striders 00:52:59 F 67 10 F 6 F
169 Jonathan Hamill Elvet Striders 00:55:04 MV40 81 68 M 21 MV40
145 Sue Gardham Elvet Striders 01:00:08 FV40 124 22 F 4 FV40
19 Louise Barrow Elvet Striders 01:01:36 F 148 30 F 21 F
120 Jane Dowsett Elvet Striders 01:14:34 FV40 297 132 F 48 FV40
69 Carla Clarke Elvet Striders 01:14:54 F 302 136 F 67 F
360 Diane Soulsby Elvet Striders 01:16:12 FV50 315 148 F 21 FV50
376 Carole Thompson-Young Elvet Striders 01:27:55 FV50 363 184 F 30 FV50
25 Kathleen Bellamy Elvet Striders 01:32:15 FV40 364 185 F 70 FV40
87 Samantha Crampton Elvet Striders 01:39:01 F 366 187 F 83 F

Leeds Liverpool Canal Canter, Saturday, March 11, 2017

10km

Tamsin Imber

This is a very nice race which is well organised by It’s Grim up North Running.

As I drove into the Kirstall area of Leeds, marshals were in position directing cars to the free car-parking. It was a short, signposted walk to the start at the canal-side. Toilets and left baggage tent are available at the start. There were actually 5 races all starting at 9.30am!: a 5k, 10k, half, marathon and ultra-all going along the canal, but all went very smoothly.

The weather was perfect-a nice dry spring day. A lively Yorkshire vibe filled the air as runners kept arriving and a crowd gathered. A jolly Yorkshire man recalled a ‘Horse versus man’ race he had done last year. Another Yorkshire runner told me about canal depths-she had fallen in last year! After a briefing from a megaphoned marshal standing on a large rock we were herded to the start line. Gareth had helpfully advised me to stand somewhere near the front to avoid bottlenecks when the race started. So I exceeded this advice and stood right at the front! Just behind me were very fit looking running beans including four very fit looking Yorkshire girls. Two of them chatted merrily about 3 hour marathons. Wow, I wouldn’t mind a 3 hour marathon one day! We waited for time to pass and the marshal to start the race.

I had decided not to wear my sports watch as I just wanted to run. I planned to try my best using my ‘breath-o-meter’ method, which is that if I am breathing really loudly then I know I am doing maximum effort! (Maybe not the best method for a longer race!).

The race started and I sped off! It was very scenic along the tree-lined canal. The canal path was muddy in places, tarmacked in others and cobbled under bridges. I got into a good, noisy, rhythm. A few cyclists here and there but they all rang their bells. There were no distance markers, but I gauged how far I had gone by seeing where the marshal turned the 5k runners round-I knew I had to do the same again before us 10k runners were turned around (it was a there and back route). There was one 10k girl ahead of me and she kept increasing her speed so soon she was out of my sight. I couldn’t hear anyone behind me. I was really enjoying just running fast along the canal! It was great! After 4 bridges I reached half way and was turned round by a marshal. Now I could see how far people were behind me as I met them coming the other way! In terms of ladies the two runners who had been talking about 3 hour marathons were next! I tried to run faster incase they were planning a negative split! As I went back past familiar landmarks I’d seen on the way out I used that to gauge how far I had to go. The 3-hour marathon girls were nowhere to be heard. I started the sprint finish –my favourite bit! -where the white track joined the canal-side, and soon could see the finish ahead, where a friendly crowd cheered me on! What a fun run! I had no idea what my time was, but who cares! I really enjoyed the running! Plus, bonus -I got a new bling, Kentish fine ale (don’t like beer but it looked cool) and a snickers bar (can’t beat the chocolate-peanut combo!). I quickly took off my number (69 was a bit embarrassing to wear) and soon spotted a huge table top off home backed cakes! Yum!… I’d love to do the half next time as it ended far too soon!, and the half route looks lovely along the canal in the other direction heading out of Leeds to Saltaire. Next time!

FlaminGO!, Kirby Misperton, Yorkshire, Saturday, March 11, 2017

10km

Stephen Jackson

 

This was a race nestled right in the middle of marathon training which meant that there had been no opportunity to taper. Michael Littlewood, my travel companion for the day was 80 miles deep into a 100 mile week and I wasn’t too far behind.

That said, I felt pretty good, and was ready to race. It was nice to lace the racing flats up following a long stretch of fairly intense training.

The course is a two loop affair, through the theme park and the zoo and around the golf course. Approximately 2 miles of the 6 were through muddy fields, the rest was tarmac – most of it was pretty flat.

The start was tentative as we all waited for the eventual winner, Tristan Learoyd, to head up the field and lead us all out towards the golf course. By 1km there was a group of 3/4 runners just off the lead and the pace was brisk before we hit the mud, which slowed us all up.

By half way I knew I had a good chance of placing in the top 3 so the exercise was more to do with ‘racing’ those around me than PB chasing. The grass sections were too muddy for the course to translate into an overall personal best so I didn’t even bother looking at my watch, I just ran to feel, trying to keep up with those around me.

As we left the golf course for the second time I was in second place, closely followed by James Fahey from North York Moors AC who unfortunately (for him) slipped just as we hit the tarmac again. After checking he was ok, I took advantage of this and put in a little surge, creating a gap of about about 100m between us, which I was able to stretch out over the last mile.

In the end it was a great day out, 2nd place and a pretty solid time. Michael also came in the top 10 finishers (8th) and joined me for a quick cool down before the presentation.

I’d recommend the race; it’s not on the doorstep but could be combined with a family day out. The course is interesting and there’s a chance to win a family pass for the park.

 

 

Results:

http://www.runbritainrankings.com/results/results.aspx?meetingid=195060&event=10KNAD&venue=Malton&date=11-Mar-17

Run Newcastle Valentines 10k, Newcastle Town Moor, Sunday, February 12, 2017

Robin Linton

Well what an awful day this was, wind, ice, sleet, rain, more wind. I don’t think many striders were in attendance but at the same time the race was pretty busy, around 614 people I think. Registration was 9:00-10:30am, seems a long time for people to register as the numbers were not sent out prior and with a race start time of 11am. To be honest there was a lot of waiting around, we got there early to park and I say we I mean my mam Helen Linton (Also a strider), my partner in crime (some would call her my partner) and a few work friends/friends.

The baggage drop was literally a ground sheet but did the job, can’t complain? Marshalls and staff were helpful and polite, parking wasn’t an issue but we were there early as last time I was at this course (The Mo run) parking was a nightmare.

So after standing around for over an hour in awful weather, I did a quick warm up and pushed my way as far forward as I could, probably a bit ambitious about 10 from the front but wanted that time badly. I was aiming for 46 minutes and seeing how I got on. David Hinton started ahead of me and I knew he was quicker from certain training sessions, didn’t even target him I thought it was a lost cause. Anyway the race started and I was swamped, I had prepped myself mentally for it, knew it was going to happen but I was running my own race, no one else’s. I was aiming for 7:15s ambitiously and the first mile was bang on. Before I knew it, unintentionally my legs were starting to get carried away, I had to slow them and look after my breathing but half way through mile 2, I was getting in a rhythm and finding that sweet equilibrium of effort and conservation.

5k came and went, gave myself a little maths lesson as it ticked through 10 slower than my 5k pace, started overthinking I have gone to fast, I’ve gone too fast. But just after mile 3, I could see David up a head, I told myself do not over work to get past and I didn’t, I sat at pace and didn’t alter one bit. 4 mile beeped on my Garmin as I went side to side with David, all I could think is please don’t come back at me, please. I just didn’t have any more to wind up with to defend that sweet first strider position, although my catching up was paced, once past I started getting quicker to the point I had to dab the brakes on a little as I started losing the rhythm and breathing. So thanks to David, for shaving some time off for men

Came up past the 9k mark where in the distance I could see my mam, yes on her second lap, on the pass back she had waited 30 seconds or so (we can minus it from her time) to take a photo of me head down, eyes forward and having a big talk with myself not to unload to early, obviously I got a big shout too. Last 400 meters, started unloading with everything I had, thought I had enough to dip under 44, I took 7-8 people with no flutters of resistance to go over the finish line. Chocolate and water followed along with another 2 miles cool down to shuttle back for the people I had booked up with and offer them morale support.

Mad Dog 10K – Live and Let Drool, Southport, Sunday, February 5, 2017

Dougie Nisbet

I did the first ever Mad Dog and it was great. The thought of being a Mad Dog Ever Present appealed and for a few years it was all good, but holidays and diary clashes intervened, so now I have to settle for being a Nearly Ever Present. Still, it’s been great watching this fledgling event grow from nothing to one of the UK’s most popular 10Ks in just seven years.

My training lately has been lots of long and slow as trying to do the short and fast thing doesn’t really agree with me. It’s too much like hard work. So as I stood in the Dalmatian pen (not as fast as a Greyhound, but faster than a Husky) I knew running 10km wasn’t going to be a big problem. It was running it fast that would be the hard bit.

Elvis at the Southport Mad Dog 10KAway we went into the fine morning. Conditions were good. Congestion was as expected and not too bad, and it thinned out pretty quickly anyway. I was in no rush and settled down into a comfortable groove. This is a good race for spectators with opportunities to catch the race in more than one place if you do your homework. I spied Roberta standing on the pier where she, along with many other spectators, were spellbound by the entertainer high-fiving runners as they past underneath. It was Elvis. Possibly the same Elvis you see at the bus-shelter towards the end of the GNR. Or a close relation. And my word, what a talent! A performance never to be forgotten. Music was a big theme this year. It always is for the Mad Dog but this year the performances were exceptional. You get to see the fantastic steel band twice, once on the way out, and again in the last few kms.

At the half-way point I was feeling pretty comfy and stepped up the pace a little. The route now meandered around to pass back under the pier at a different point where the Merseyside Rock Choir brought some real class to the party. I was feeling pretty good and bounded on although I was tempted to stop, look and listen.

With about 3km to go I kept nudging the needle careful not to blow it and throttling back gently when I felt I was overdoing it. Passing runners steadily to the line I gave a well-judged push in the last few hundred metres, slightly alarmed that the Finish banner said Start, and hoping that the Finish wasn’t round the corner back at the school. It wasn’t and I was pretty pleased with running a text-book negative split. The last time I did this race I was pretty dismayed to be well over 50 minutes, and not having run a sub-25 parkrun for as long as I can remember I wasn’t expecting miracles today. So when the text came though of a chip-time of 48:35 I was a very happy dalmatian.

Merseyside Rock Choir

Heaton Harriers Memorial 10K, Newcastle Town Moor, Sunday, November 13, 2016

Stephen Jackson


Shoulder to ShoulderWhen it comes to running, along with many other aspects of my life, I’m a creature of habit.

There are hundreds of great races that take place all over the North of England and further afield and often I check the results, browse the photos and think; I’d love to give that one a go.

However, my race calendar usually consists of 5-6 core races that I always try and enter; everything else has to fit around family life. This event now sits firmly amongst that select bunch. Brass Monkey, London Marathon, Sunderland 5k, Bridges of the Tyne, Clive Cookson 10k, Brampton to Carlisle. What’s the common theme? I’ll give you a clue, it ain’t the scenery.

If the weather is kind (more specifically; the wind) this has everything I could possibly want from an event. It’s a flat, fast course and a well organised, chip-timed race with a competitive field. Small enough to get your toes somewhere near the start line and big enough to provide a bit of competition throughout the field.

The minutes’ silence beforehand provided some stark perspective, a very fitting way of paying respect whilst doing something, running, that epitomises the freedom that our fallen soldiers died for.

The onset of a head cold during the week, coupled with the fact that this wasn’t my ‘A race’ meant that my expectations weren’t especially high – perhaps a good thing as it is emerged. I knew I was in pretty good shape after a 6-7 week block of heavy training following the Great North Run. This training programme, under the guidance of Allan Seheult, was interspersed only with a couple of cross country races and I still maintain a lot of my road PBs have been earned, in some part, during those slogs around the North East Harrier League.

The race was a dream, and one of those joyously unexpected results that leaves you thinking did I really do that? Finding that precarious balance between speed (all relative) and control is not easy; but on Sunday I had some help. Around 7km into the race, just as I was really starting to tire someone went past my right shoulder looking, it must be said, far more comfortable than I was feeling. For the next mile I didn’t so much as glance at my watch, I knew it wouldn’t make a difference. I shadowed this poor bloke, stride for stride. If only psychologically, it felt like he was doing the work for me. This gave me a real boost before the final km which had to take care of itself, nothing left on the course, no ‘what-ifs’.

Ten seconds with my hands on my knees, a glance at my watch, then a smile. I love running.

And yes, I did beat him in the end.

Turnpike Trot 10k, Whitby, Sunday, October 23, 2016

Steve Ellis

Set in the tranquil North Yorkshire moors, a mile or two off the main Whitby road this trot was advertised as a 10k (or thereabouts) event organised by the now burgeoning brand that is Hardmoors.

We arrived in plenty of time to get our numbers and ponder the relative merits of various clothing/ footwear combos. Malcolm had chosen his normal minimalist approach as can be seen on the photos! Hardmoors..phaa. I shall bear my chest and stride them tha hills! the rest of us choosing warmer garb. Each to their own . After registration the throng began to move out of the village and up a wooded path to the starting place where the finishing tent was also placed. After the now mandatory health and safety briefing we were off! The “trot” quickly turned into a pell-mell ,helter skelter pelt down a wet and slippery bumpy grassy slope. At the bottom the path became more narrow and muddy and eventually , after crossing a heavily saw dusted wooden bridge and some likewise saw dusted wooden platforms we began the 800 meter or so climb. Now we were back to trotting. The path was very narrow and hidden gullies and pot holes were waiting to catch the unwary. Progress was slow but steady to the top where a sharp left turn took us out onto the now flat moor. The paths were grassy and full of puddles which were circumnavigated by most and gave us the chance to now turn this trot into a run. The river crossing caused a bottleneck as runners found various ways to get across. Scampering down the little ravine most hopped over on the rocks. Some just plodged through….very hardmoors! After this brief hazard we resumed our grassy zig zag puddle avoiding run. At last a sharp downhill stretch loomed into view which was very rocky and very slippery. Not for the feint hearted as a wanton approach here could prove to be painful. At the bottom a sharp left-hand turn and the path began to climb again. It dragged on for a few hundred metres then crested to reveal a long grassy slalom back to the start line. And so the second lap began. We were now joined by the 5k Rabbit runners who had just set off and the trot continued much like the first lap. The moorlands here were reflecting the changeable nature of the weather. As we looked west across the bleak hills they were at once all monochrome greys and next greens and purple as the sun broke through. Wherever you looked the cloud bursts could be seen in the distance and we knew our turn would come! Mercifully short and light downpours.

At the finish a gathering purple phalanx continued to cheer all comers to the finish tent, admirably marshalled by our own Anna Seeley. A special cheer was saved for finishing striders. Once through the tent the chat turned to the rather lovely medal we’d earned. It looked like it was made of brass inviting one particular comment, proving once again the very sage Yorkshire life view, that were there’s muck there’s brass!

Malcolm was first strider home followed by Vicky. He was still resplendent in vest and shorts and showing true Yorkshire grit. On the way back to the cars I could swear I heard him turn to Katherine and say” eee lass it were greet o’nt top of them hills today tha nos, and me barr tat an all”….well maybe not The general consensus was a good day all round and to cap it off on the way home the rain really started . Sometimes our timing is just right..

Group Photo

The Salomon 10K Trail Race, Keswick, Sunday, May 22, 2016

Penny Browell

Keswick Mountain Festival

Plink, plink, fizz!

A few months ago I received an invitation to a wedding in the lake district and the groom (a fellow runner) mentioned the wedding was taking place the same weekend as the Keswick Mountain Festival so I might want to get a race in whilst I was there. It struck me as slightly unwise to race the day after a wedding but once the idea had been planted I couldn’t resist booking myself in. However at 1am on Sunday morning after too many drinks to count and 4 hours in my dancing shoes I (for once) agreed with my husband that maybe racing wasn’t a great idea.

Sunday morning arrived and due to road closures we had to get up early to drive from Hawkshead to Keswick. My head and feet were sore but it was shaping up to be a beautiful day and when we arrived at the festival village there was a lovely atmosphere with plenty of coffee and porridge on sale (thankfully). The festival included a massive range of sporting events including triathlons, ultras, open water swimming and more. It was great to see some of the other competitors taking part and crossing the finishing line but before long it was time for me to set off for the 10k. The race was slightly unusual in that there were multiple starts across the day with each heat only around 100-200. But part of its appeal had been the fact that you have to get a boat from Keswick to Low Brandelhow to get to the start. The boat was bustling with nervous and excited runners and I finally started to feel like I was there to run rather than nurse my hangover.

Penny.

I’d read up a little on the route and knew that the first half was harder than the second and they weren’t kidding. After about a mile of lovely lakeside trails we turned sharply up some monster hills to then contour the side of Catbells. Views were fabulous and the terrain rocky and uneven but dry so fairly easy to run on. The paths undulated up and down and eventually we were back on easier lakeside paths which I recognised from many holidays around Keswick. The last mile or so included some road I knew well through Portinscale and then onto a footpath into Keswick. We were close to the 10k mark and I knew the quickest way back but the race organisers decided to give us an extra bit of fun by taking us off road for a couple more twists and turns before returning to the festival village a lot closer to 7 miles than 10k… The finish was fabulous with crowds cheering you in and especially special for me as I got to see my kids for the first time in over 24 hours.

Due to the race being run in heats I was unable to be absolutely confident of my position but I knew I was first lady in my heat and that I’d run a good race so I celebrated with a cider ice lolly whilst cheering my brother in law in from a 1500m swim in Derwent water. Later in the day I found out I’d won first place for the ladies overall and even broken the course record for women (although I think the race has only been running a couple of years!). I’m now wondering whether I need to drink heavily and dance for hours the night before every race….

Clive Cookson 10K, Wednesday, May 18, 2016

10km

Stephen Jackson

Clive Cookson 10K This was a very well organised, two-lap race on a relatively flat course, with great PB potential; what’s not to like. The atmosphere was very friendly, from the GB international at the front to the 90 minute plus 10k runner towards the rear – everyone was given a warm welcome. Add to this a mild, early summer evening with little or no wind and I was in my element – I fancied a new 10km PB.

The race started at 7.15pm prompt and it was tight at the beginning, even though I’d managed to position myself fairly close to the start line. However, it didn’t take long to find a rhythm as the lead pack(s) quickly broke. What I hadn’t quite appreciated is that the beginning of the race is on a slight incline, nothing too severe, but certainly noticeable on the second lap when the legs are slightly less fresh. The upshot of this is after 2km the road gently rolls back downhill and the pace naturally quickens.

I’d planned to run quite sensibly, split halfway at approximately 17:30 and increase the pace, if possible, towards the end – and so it was to be.

I went through 5km in 17:24, I think, and then had to dig in between 5km and 7km, I was passing people even though I was running slightly slower – I had no one at that point to drag me along. I then got in a small group which carried me through towards the finish, gradually feeling stronger; I knew I was going to be somewhere close to my sub 35 minute target.

I finished a second ahead of Jason Auld of Crook AC for the second time in a week, no mean feat as he’s one of the better Vets in the North East.

So, a new PB of 34.44 (chip time), a nice new t-shirt (albeit orange) and home in half an hour whilst the sun was still shining.

What could be better than that?

Stephen on course for a PB