|8||84||Michael Mason||m||Seniors M40||00.42.06|
|13||35||Michael Littlewood||m||Seniors M40||00.43.12|
|109||197||Allan Renwick||m||Seniors M40||00.49.28|
|169||783||Fiona Jones||w||Seniors W40||00.51.37|
|196||40||Davey Lumsdon||m||Seniors M50||00.52.29|
|203||95||Stephen Winship||m||Seniors M50||00.52.39|
|210||24||Stephen Soulsby||m||Seniors M50||00.52.45|
|220||888||Ian Butler||m||Seniors M50||00.53.09|
|251||1||Andrew Davies||m||Seniors M40||00.5406.|
|259||3||Jonathan Hamill||m||Seniors M40||00.54.21|
|282||94||Anna Basu||w||Seniors W40||00.55.00|
|320||7||Sarah Davies||w||Seniors W50||00.56.04|
|355||740||Chris Shearsmith||m||Seniors M40||00.57.06|
|356||10||Susan Scott||w||Seniors W40||00.57.10|
|357||21||Rachelle Mason||w||Seniors W40||00.57.18|
|362||235||Stephanie Barlow||w||Seniors W40||00.57.32|
|393||970||Malcolm Sygrove||m||Seniors M50||00.58.22|
|405||86||Alex Brown||m||Seniors M40||00.58.43|
|425||68||Craig Walker||m||Seniors M50||00.59.12|
|464||317||Jean Bradley||w||Seniors W60||00.59.58|
|555||2||Lesley Hamill||w||Seniors W40||01.01.56|
|606||665||Jill Rudkin||w||Seniors W40||01.03.25|
|653||114||Lee Stephenson||m||Seniors M40||01.04.50|
|694||159||Chloe Black||w||Seniors W40||01.06.25|
|742||191||Heather Raistrick||w||Seniors W50||01.07.39|
|749||132||Alan Smith||m||Seniors M70||01.07.54|
|764||29||Jenny Search||w||Seniors W40||01.08.07|
|813||72||Catherine Walker||w||Seniors W60||01.09.07|
|816||179||James Nicholson||m||Seniors M70||01.09.11|
|829||573||Alison Heslop||w||Seniors W40||01.09.41|
|854||166||Angela Robson||w||Seniors W40||01.10.29|
|915||73||George Alan Scott||m||Seniors M50||01.12.50|
|920||25||Elaine Broatch||w||Seniors W50||01.12.55|
|921||6||Jane Dowsett||w||Seniors W40||01.12.56|
|922||51||Carole Thompson-Young||w||Seniors W50||01.12.56|
|929||766||Tina Taylor||w||Seniors W40||01.13.00|
|934||661||Faye Ward||w||Seniors W40||01.13.15|
|948||37||Wendy Littlewood||w||Seniors W40||01.13.52|
|951||57||Zoe Dewdney Parsons||w||Women||01.13.56|
|1003||1180||Alison Smith||w||Seniors W40||01.16.39|
|1004||109||Sue Walker||w||Seniors W60||01.16.39|
|1013||1013||Christine Farnsworth||w||Seniors W60||01.16.50|
|1026||1290||Ann Kain||w||Seniors W50||01.17.11|
|1085||425||Jane Baillie||w||Seniors W40||01.19.50|
|1091||65||Aileen Scott||w||Seniors W40||01.20.10|
|1098||22||Kerry Barnett||w||Seniors W40||01.20.46|
|1111||56||Lindsay Parker||w||Seniors W40||01.21.30|
|1140||824||Sharon Campbell||w||Seniors W40||01.23.00|
|1149||455||Diane Soulsby||w||Seniors W50||01.23.17|
|1181||181||Carol Holgate||w||Seniors W40||01.25.58|
|1||354||Abraham Tewelde||m||Men||Saltwell Harriers||38:18|
|61||607||Natalie Batey||w||Women||Derwent Valley RC||47:17|
|6||326||Gareth Pritchard||m||Men||Elvet Striders||40:14|
|17||487||Michael Littlewood||m||Seniors M40||Elvet Striders||42:59|
|20||523||Chris Callan||m||Men||Elvet Striders||43:41|
|152||502||Fiona Jones||w||Seniors W40||Elvet Striders||52:06|
|162||306||Louise Warner||w||Women||Elvet Striders||52:24|
|169||101||Helen Tones||w||Seniors W40||Elvet Striders||52:37|
|234||1067||Graeme Walton||m||Seniors M40||Elvet Striders||54:30|
|277||40||Jonathan Hamill||m||Seniors M40||Elvet Striders||55:59|
|289||605||Melanie Hudson||w||Women||Elvet Striders||56:14|
|292||1131||Dougie Nisbet||m||Seniors M50||Elvet Striders||56:19|
|303||124||Andrew Davies||m||Seniors M40||Elvet Striders||56:33|
|328||14||Craig Walker||m||Seniors M50||Elvet Striders||57:13|
|337||99||Rachelle Mason||w||Women||Elvet Striders||57:36|
|358||838||Jean Bradley||w||Seniors W60||Elvet Striders||58:21|
|361||147||Robin Linton||m||Men||Elvet Striders||58:25|
|374||102||David Browbank||m||Men||Elvet Striders||59:03|
|381||150||Helen Parker||w||Seniors W40||Elvet Striders||59:20|
|382||134||Lynne Stobart||w||Women||Elvet Striders||59:20|
|404||504||Chris Shearsmith||m||Men||Elvet Striders||59:52|
|422||203||Sue Gardham||w||Seniors W40||Elvet Striders||1:00:25|
|438||54||Karen Byng||w||Seniors W40||Elvet Striders||1:00:59|
|447||604||Dave Robson||m||Seniors M60||Elvet Striders||1:01:13|
|463||836||Kate Thompson||w||Women||Elvet Striders||1:01:33|
|474||1168||Victoria Brown||w||Women||Elvet Striders||1:01:53|
|528||520||Stephen Ellis||m||Seniors M60||Elvet Striders||1:03:03|
|529||432||Andrew Munro||m||Seniors M40||Elvet Striders||1:03:03|
|538||57||Anita Wright||w||Seniors W50||Elvet Striders||1:03:11|
|556||820||Lesley Charman||w||Seniors W40||Elvet Striders||1:03:26|
|558||300||Karin Younger||w||Seniors W50||Elvet Striders||1:03:29|
|559||471||Anna Seeley||w||Women||Elvet Striders||1:03:29|
|563||325||Catherine Smith||w||Seniors W40||Elvet Striders||1:03:34|
|565||74||Joanne Patterson||w||Women||Elvet Striders||1:03:36|
|568||60||Mike Parker||m||Seniors M40||Elvet Striders||1:03:41|
|603||619||Jill Rudkin||w||Seniors W40||Elvet Striders||1:04:57|
|612||1026||James Potter||m||Men||Elvet Striders||1:05:18|
|616||728||Jim Nicholson||m||Seniors M70||Elvet Striders||1:05:21|
|623||956||Katie-Louise Finney||w||Women||Elvet Striders||1:05:27|
|624||505||Victoria Jackson||w||Women||Elvet Striders||1:05:28|
|626||439||Andrew Thurston||m||Seniors M50||Elvet Striders||1:05:34|
|689||19||Alan Scott||m||Seniors M50||Elvet Striders||1:07:09|
|703||15||Catherine Walker||w||Seniors W50||Elvet Striders||1:07:44|
|706||28||Debra Thompson||w||Seniors W50||Elvet Striders||1:07:49|
|721||62||Rachel Turner||w||Women||Elvet Striders||1:08:14|
|723||483||Peter Hart||m||Seniors M40||Elvet Striders||1:08:22|
|729||108||Angela Robson||w||Seniors W40||Elvet Striders||1:08:30|
|749||489||Wendy Littlewood||w||Women||Elvet Striders||1:09:02|
|769||393||Alison Heslop||w||Seniors W40||Elvet Striders||1:09:42|
|770||677||Fiona Wood||w||Women||Elvet Striders||1:09:43|
|771||929||Jill Young||w||Women||Elvet Striders||1:09:43|
|773||1083||Kirsten Fenwick||w||Women||Elvet Striders||1:09:47|
|803||82||Jane Dowsett||w||Seniors W40||Elvet Striders||1:10:43|
|804||17||Aileen Scott||w||Seniors W40||Elvet Striders||1:10:47|
|817||474||Helen Thomas||w||Seniors W40||Elvet Striders||1:11:04|
|821||898||Karen Metters||w||Seniors W40||Elvet Striders||1:11:06|
|854||977||Louise Barrow||w||Women||Elvet Striders||1:12:14|
|916||1161||Christine Farnsworth||w||Seniors W60||Elvet Striders||1:13:32|
|922||519||Janet Ellis||w||Seniors W50||Elvet Striders||1:13:45|
|973||207||Helen Hackett||w||Seniors W50||Elvet Striders||1:15:38|
|976||1138||Katie Davison||w||Women||Elvet Striders||1:15:47|
|1019||747||Gillian Green||w||Seniors W40||Elvet Striders||1:18:01|
|1020||1158||Rebecca Gilmore||w||Women||Elvet Striders||1:18:02|
|1022||572||Sharon Campbell||w||Women||Elvet Striders||1:18:06|
|1025||578||Neil Jennings||m||Seniors M50||Elvet Striders||1:18:13|
|1027||333||Diane Soulsby||w||Seniors W50||Elvet Striders||1:18:28|
|1054||839||Kerry Barnett||w||Seniors W40||Elvet Striders||1:20:13|
|1056||848||Laura Gibson||w||Seniors W40||Elvet Striders||1:20:18|
|1058||846||Natalie Johnson||w||Women||Elvet Striders||1:20:22|
|1061||1174||Rachel Toth||w||Seniors W40||Elvet Striders||1:20:45|
|1065||729||Caitlin Mooney||w||Women||Elvet Striders||1:21:03|
|1094||97||Pauline Elliott||w||Seniors W50||Elvet Striders||1:23:08|
|1128||320||Helen Linton||w||Seniors W50||Elvet Striders||1:27:03|
|1149||934||Mike Elliott||m||Seniors M70||Elvet Striders||1:31:46|
|1160||579||Elaine Jennings||w||Seniors W50||Elvet Striders||1:36:08|
|1161||585||Rachel Leigh-Firbank||w||Seniors W40||Elvet Striders||1:36:08|
|1169||219||Laura Jackson||w||Women||Elvet Striders||1:38:49|
Pier to Pier, South Shields to Sunderland, Sunday, May 17, 2015
It was hard to find anyone who was feeling good. Runners are notorious for grumbling about their form, but we were all in top grumbling form today. One day I’ll chat to runners before a race and someone will say they’ve never felt better and fully expect to PB. Not today though – I was treating the race as a fact-finding mission after a viral infection that has messed up my running for most of the year. The first fact I found was that it was going to cost me £25 to run the 7 miles or so from South Shields to Roker.
I calculated that I’d be running at £3.63 mile pace, which is still slightly cheaper than a Brendan, but that didn’t worry me too much either way. The weather was fine and the race is an old favourite of mine.
In common with the Coastal Run the start is a faintly tribal mass of running shirts stretched across the beach. I was disappointed that the organisers hadn’t drawn a line in the sand with a pointy stick to indicate the Start Line. I do miss that touch.
A few minutes after 10 and away we charged along the beach. This was my first running race in about 6 months and I was curious about how it would go. It was clunky at first and I felt I’d got out of bed 10 minutes earlier rather than the actual 6am start it had been. That extra Espresso had been a bad idea too (I knew it would be, but I never learn), and I had to dive into some bushes to redress that balance. This was a bit awkward as I’d only just passed George and Karen and we’d done the whole ‘Well-Done’ routine – now I was going to have to pass them again and explain myself.
We approached the lane that extends down from Redwell Lane and the usual bottleneck was there as runners queued to get down the steps. There’s big seconds to be gained here by running down the grass, jumping down the wall, across the lane, and up the other side. I’m not sure whether people are just not keen on the wall scramble, or they just don’t realise how much shorter and quicker it is to avoid the steps.
I had to pull over for a bit of quality retching as we passed Souter Lighthouse but on the whole I wasn’t feeling too bad and for the remainder of the race I steadily picked up my pace and picked off runners all the way to the Finish. The sand was firm underfoot at the finish (has that changed?) which was a relief as I’m sure in previous years it’s been a painful comedy sprint in soft sand for the last few yards to the line.
My time was a few minutes slower than the last time I ran the race 5 years ago so I was pretty happy. It could’ve been a lot worse. Graham Daglish was grinning at the end of the finish tunnel as I coughed in, not doing too badly for someone who hasn’t raced in 3 years.
There were a few first-timers today, including Andy James who made the classic mistake of pushing for the line too early. It’s easy done – the Finish looks tantalisingly close, but on closer inspection morphs into a flight of steps with the real Finish another beach away. In fact, the more you speak to people, the harder it is to find someone who hasn’t made this error.
After a chilly start we had fine conditions for this race today. And thanks to the bus driver’s daughter we had plenty of room on the coach as she’d insisted on coming along … and when the coach is already full, you just have to get a bigger one out the garage.
|25||Alex Sneddon||Jarrow & Hebburn AC||Women||0:44:26.9|
|184||Graham Daglish||Seniors M60||0:51:56.7|
|227||Lesley Charman||Seniors W40||0:53:23.0|
|251||Andrew Short||Seniors M50||0:54:02.7|
|293||David Spence||Seniors M60||0:55:07.9|
|369||Karen Jones||Seniors W40||0:57:07.9|
|418||Jean Bradley||Seniors W50||0:58:36.7|
|497||Greta Jones||Seniors W40||1:00:49.0|
|556||Dougie Nisbet||Seniors M50||1:02:24.7|
|579||Stephen Ellis||Seniors M60||1:03:21.5|
|592||Kate McPherson||Seniors W40||1:03:48.8|
|616||Angela Tribe||Seniors W40||1:04:28.9|
|634||George Nicholson||Seniors M60||1:05:20.8|
|640||Karin Younger||Seniors W50||1:05:43.5|
|666||Aileen Scott||Seniors W40||1:06:50.6|
|669||Andy James||Seniors M60||1:07:02.2|
|688||Louise Billcliffe||Seniors W50||1:07:42.2|
|692||Karen Anne Chalkley||Seniors W50||1:07:48.4|
|747||Helen Hackett||Seniors W40||1:10:19.8|
|771||Angela Robson||Seniors W40||1:11:19.3|
|777||Christine Farnsworth||Seniors W60||1:11:40.7|
|856||Barrie Evans||Seniors M60||1:15:47.7|
|883||Michael Elliott||Seniors M60||1:18:10.3|
|910||Margaret Thompson||Seniors W60||1:20:59.1|
After a week consisting of a half marathon, and a 10k, plus couple of training runs, there was no better way to finish it off than the 7 mile Pier to Pier run!
Against my better judgement I signed up for this, knowing full well I had another two races, but thought ‘why not!?’ All good training … This was my first time doing the Pier to Pier race but I had walked the route before, albeit with blazing sunshine and an ice-cream stop (or two!) But was looking forward to a nice run down the coast and to be representing the Striders.
Sunday morning saw us all converge in a car park in South Shields, collecting timing tags, attempting to attach timing tags, Striders were out in force with over 30 of us representing the club. I’d heard stories about the first mile being a struggle, all on the beach, but if you managed to avoid others footprints, it wasn’t actually too bad. Where we converged before running up onto the grass it was tough going though. My legs were feeling it after the previous two races and I wondered if this was a race too much in the week!
Then came the decision – left or right!? I could see Barrie ahead of me, he opted for right along the grass, so I decided he had probably done a few Pier to Piers in his time and would be a sensible person to follow!
Was still struggling at this point, and it seemed to be getting incredibly warm too. But kept my head down and plodded on, before I knew it the Souter Lighthouse, and (I think) the half-way point was just ahead of me. Quick stop for some water then back on it!
At this point I didn’t actually know where the finish was, had nightmare visions of going up the long, slow hill at Roker that had been my nemesis the previous week, but fortunately I could see we were all heading down the esplanade. Finally, we rounded the corner and the beach and finish line were in sight. Pushing on, and to cheers from other Striders (best bit of the race – thanks!!) I even managed a cheeky ‘sprint’ finish. Not my best time, but was pleased to have finished, and after a busy week.
Great goody bag, although I think I’m always a bit disappointed not to get a medal to add to my sparse collection! Gel/Water bottle/Socks/Buff/junk food – ideal!
Well organised race by the Sunderland Strollers, and great to be out representing the Striders.
Definitely another one I’ll be signing up to in the future!
|4||Rosie Smith||Durham City Harriers||F||1||41:09.3|
Pier to Pier Race, South Shields to Roker, Sunday, May 12, 2013
Finally, I’d managed to make it (first timer!) to the extra extra extra long start line of the Pier to Pier Race in South Shields. The beach line up was dotted with plenty of purple vests – the usual good Strider turnout for this Grand Prix race. It was a great day for racing, bright and slightly breezy. I got pretty chilly at the start but soon warmed up once I’d made my first bad choice in direction over the left hand sand bank; my footsteps sank deep into the sand whilst those on the right strode along the surface of the wetter, firmer terrain. Time to start paying attention to the many choices in direction that would be ahead of me! I tried to take the racing line from then on and the race became not only beautiful but good fun too! It flew over, I really enjoyed it and I got a Mars bar and a bag of crisps followed up by a carvery sandwich at the Harbour View in Roker.
What more could a girl want!
Anita Dunseith took lots of good photographs … more at link below:
|1||JENKIN, Dan||Durham City Harriers||M||0:37:04|
|50||CUTTER, Vanessa||Gateshead Harriers||F||0:44:57|
|580||EVANS, Barrie John||MV60-69||1:03:43|
|625||FARNSWORTH, Christine Anne||FV60-69||1:05:27|
Pier to Pier Race, South Shields to Roker, Sunday, May 20, 2012
I last ran the Pier to Pier race two years ago, just before joining Elvet Striders, and was paggered at the end, barely able to face the final section across the beach. I have no recollection of the time, but it was probably about 70 minutes and I was so glad it was over.
This year, I snuck it in as an extra race, the week before my Edinburgh half, as there was a bus on, and lots of people seemed to be going. When we arrived at the start, I had my number to pick up, dropped off my baggage, stuffed an oatmeal and raisin muffin down my neck, and went in search of familiar people from other nearby clubs. David Savage and Dean Phillips from Sunderland Harriers were not far away, and I decided to warm-up with them and Al Knebel of Sunderland Parkrun, with a few woops, skips and jumps for good measure. It seems that I missed the Strider group pic as a result -sorry! I also started away from our other Club members, as I like to focus on my own race, and pace myself better if running next to runners I don’t know anything about. Or in this case, runners so much faster than me that it was immaterial how I ran – I was never gunna catch them.
The beach start wasn’t too bad, the ascent up the sand a bit tough, and I had forgotten that overall there was a climb to the Lighthouse approx halfway. Multi-terrain ain’t my baby, so I felt the difference on my legs on sand, grass, gravel paths, grass again, but was enjoying the lovely view around me towards the sea. I hadn’t seen any Striders around me, only Paul Lordsmythe Smith (Crook Harriers) who yelled at me and then pretended he hadn’t, as he sort of hobbled by on his dicky knees. They were still bloomin fast!
About four miles, I felt like a furnace. I suddenly remembered that the previous week I had had a fluey headache which had drained me, thought it had gone by Saturday, and hey-ho, here it was back. Oh well, I didn’t feel too good at that point, but several narrow paths and gates meant it wasn’t that easy to pass other people so my pace dropped a bit and I was quite glad of that right then. More grass came, seemingly weighing my legs down and it suddenly seemed a long way to the finish, but at 5 miles, I knew I had to just run steady till 6, wait for the run-in to the beach, then go for it. We had certainly moved onto much more level terrain by now, and soon came the paths along the promenade.
I was still boiling hot, but the same steady pace obviously covered greater ground on the flat even surface and soon it was the last corner before the beach. A small cluster of people supping hot beverages and eating chips clapped and cheered at the beach cafe and I really liked that. It was also a tad cooler round that curve, and I liked that even more. The beach just came at me and I started singing a song in my head, shutting out the distance to the finish line, and keeping it steady. “Come on Kathryn, last 50 metres to sprint!” yelled James Garland all of a sudden, and “C’mon Kathryn” bellowed Ali (THANK YOU both!!) and I lurched to the finish with their support.
I didn’t realise till Jan Young told me later that I was First Lady Strider home (don’t always notice people passing me) and was pleasantly surprised, given that I hadn’t felt too good. I will definitely be back next year, hopefully without head cold, to knock a few minutes off my time! It was also a good boost for me after my DNF at Milton Keynes, and many thanks to all Striders who have enquired after my health and welfare since then.
|1||Luke Adams||South Shields||37:01|
|217||Marco Van Den Bremen||52:10|
|725||Christine Anne Farnsworth||67:37|
This was the third time that I have run this great race and my preparation was probably the worst prep for a race I have ever done. The weekend started with a 700 metre swim in a quite chilly lake (my exact words were “Wow, it’s freezing in here”) followed by a 29 mile windy cycle around North Yorkshire on Saturday. You could say that I completed a triathlon with the longest ever transition of 18 hours!
When I opened the curtains on Sunday morning, saw the rain and heard the wind, I knew that it wasn’t going to be the easiest of races so I donned full compression gear under my Striders vest and Lindsey and I headed off to Roker to park and get the bus up to South Shields. Luckily, the rain had stopped by the time we got there but the wind was still biting cold. Eventually, the Striders coach came and we all headed off to the start and huddled together behind Alister and Andy Jordan for shelter from the wind.
The race was started dead on 10am and we all went hurtling along South Shields beach into a strong headwind, which we had to contend with for pretty much the whole race. My aim was just to take it easy as it wasn’t one of my ‘A’ races for the year, I just wanted to have a good run and enjoy the race. There was a very good Striders turnout, it was good to see Pam making a comeback and also to see Alan Smith running after so much time out due to various injuries. As expected, Alister’s yellow hat disappeared into the distance quite early on in the race and I didn’t see it again until the finish, I had a good run, finishing a few seconds behind John Hutchinson and David Catterick, Nina finished way ahead of me and Striders came in thick and fast for a while until Pam and Lindsey came bounding over the sands to finish.
Once again, this was a well organised race along fantastic coastline and is well worth the effort, even with so much headwind, but next year I may prepare for it a little better!
… Alister Robson …
Another huge Striders attendance at the popular Pier to Pier from South Shields to Roker Piers. For the first time in a while, a coach was put on (many thanks to Andy James for organising and George Nicholson on the day) which was well used. There were squalls and a strong headwind beforehand and many of us took the opportunity to huddle on the beach to keep warm before the gun. That would have been a great photo opportunity, but sadly there was no Dougie!”
The squalls abated during the race although the headwind sadly didn’t. I feel this is one of the rare events where my extra body weight counted as a positive against it. Very early on I took a decision to follow a few (very few) runners who set off at a 45 degree angle up the beach, to get off the sand as soon as possible and to go up to the path. I realised this was a gamble that paid off as I managed to get in front of Nina and avoid the very sandy hill/climb/scramble at the end of the beach. Although I kept expecting her to go past at any minute she never did and therefore I knew I was on for a good time. Like most of the field I took the middle path across the (very flattened this year) grass on the headland heading towards Souter lighthouse. Unlike previous years there were very few who went up to the road, or down to the edge of the cliff (or maybe I just didn’t see them as I was further forward than usual).
I soon spotted my Parkrun nemesis, Sunderland Harrier Dean Phillips just up ahead and knuckled down to trying to catch him, which eventually I did at about 4 and a half miles. I was expecting him (and Nina) to come back at me so kept pushing and was delighted when I crossed the line (on a much firmer sandy beach than normal, I thought) in 53.04, third Strider home after Dave Gibson and Ian Thomas, smashing my course record and knocking some five and a half minutes off last years time.
I hung around at the end and watched the steady stream of runners finish, including my wife, Jacquie. At the very end there was a nasty hail shower as we went up to collect our prizes (a very nice boxed thermos flask and cups) but that quickly passed and we meandered up the hill to the Harbour View pub to wait for the coach where a nice pint of carbo recovery ale went down a treat.
… and Pam Kirkup
Bright and early on Sunday morning I set off for Durham to meet the club bus for what was to be my second ‘outing’ in a very long time. And like Coniston, the weather was to be a major feature for us all. Torrential rain greeted us at the bus stand as we waited and just about all four seasons were to be represented in the next three hours. My memory of the Pier to Pier was much more distant than that of Coniston – I even confused it with the St Peter’s 10k so I was enlightened with recent anecdotes from well-meaning Striders. Mainly nasty sand to slog through and crosswinds – hmm really tempting!
So, we arrived at South Shields in what could only be described as winter conditions – well it was extremely cold and windy. The bus buggered off immediately so we were left to stand shivering in various stages of undress, huddling together for warmth and to avoid hypothermia. OK, I might be exaggerating just a tad but it really was very cold and there were plenty of runners donning thermal vests and pinning numbers to waterproof jackets. Obviously not Striders who are a stoical bunch and “well’ard” – even if many of us had to visit the toilets several times in the nicely heated Best Western Hotel nearby!!
Eventually I asked Paul Dixon (club secretary Sunderland Strollers) to direct me to their ‘baggage bus’. “This is it!” he said pointing to the shabby transit van that we were standing next to – also doubling as the ‘sales point’ for entries on the day. There was a considerable queue and interestingly, at 9.40, no bags on the bus! By then we had experienced sun, freezing cold wind, rain with a bit of hail, more plummeting temperatures etc etc. Reluctantly baggage was deposited and shivering runners set off for the start …
The start! Clambering over dunes and a bit of churned up sand we lined up behind the yellow flag at the start line. More huddling together for warmth and then we were off! I was instantly elbowed in the solar plexus by some guy who swung around looking for his girlfriend! The poor guy was mortified and very apologetic but being winded at the start is not good. That section on the sand was horrible but thankfully Jill & Bob Hall were there shouting encouragement and I recovered quite quickly. At the time I thought I was pretty well at the back, not realising that runners had fanned out widely – some running virtually on the shoreline others right across almost off the beach.
Once off the beach, it became nearly enjoyable – almost summer, with a bit of sun, and of course the coastal path is very scenic. Close to the back you do see some odd running styles but I won’t go into that just yet! Let’s just say that, to me the ‘surge & stop’ style of running is bizarre and pointless! By the time I reached the Souter lighthouse drinks station, I was feeling comfortable and summer weather seemed to be prevailing – well it was sunny and I felt quite warm! It was after Souter that I encountered the really nutter surge runner. He was a short chubby sort of man in a hi-viz dayglo running jacket who would stop dead in front of you, then, after you had run past him, would literally sprint past and then, after about 50 metres stop dead and walk once again. This went on several times until the path narrowed so that he couldn’t do it. I let him go past but saw him ahead doing the same thing to other runners. What’s the point, I just don’t get it?
The second half of the race I found easier as I felt more comfortable. Although the wind was unpleasant and cold there was a bit more shelter. Peter & Linda McDermott and Bob & Jill Hall were at Fisherman’s Wharf, a ramp about 2 miles from the finish to cheer on Lyndsey Brooks and myself. It was really good to see them and they really helped! After that it was a run along the promenade and then onto the beach at Roker. Peter Brooks was the first Strider voice I heard and then so many others shouting encouragement for that last slog along the beach. The support was fantastic! Jan Young and then Nina started shouting as I approached the finish … and then winter emerged and giant hailstones greeted me for the last 100 metres! It was horrible – and it was wonderful! I’d finished, feeling ok, in a better time than I’d expected. Not a good time but a step in the right direction.
Mike Elliott adds:
Yes it was hard work and nice to c the c of purple and green at the end encouraging us slower sprinters. Good to see Christine and Pam running here again. Christine after her great effort in the London marathon. Pam as the last time she ran here it hoyed it down with golf ball sized hail stones for the last 2 mile BUT this year there was only a few pea sized ones for a minute.
WELL DONE 2 all. Mike
|8||Rosie Smith||Durham City||F25||42:41|
|446||Barrie John Evans||M64||63:16|
Pier to Pier Race, South Shields to Roker, Sunday, May 16, 2010
We had another massive turnout at the Pier-to-Pier – no less than thirty-three Striders again this time. There was a chance of rain in the forecast, but we were lucky, and missed the few showers that were around, and also had wind that was more behind us than in our faces – and the sun was out. A low tide this year, so plenty of space on the beach at the start, and the finish was on hardish stuff, unlike the squishy end to the race we had last time. Pretty ideal conditions, really.
The hard bit first, which is to say the run on the beach, this year on quite firm ‘undulations’ of sand [ What would you call them? Answers on a postcard … Oh, just in from Nigel: ‘Bedform ripples’.] Nice to get up onto the cliff after this and get into your stride. Gibbo went past me just before this point, and I looked round to see how far in front he’d got when we got to the grass – nowhere in sight, so I could tell he was in for a good one. Warming up quite a bit at this point, so I was actually quite glad of a drink, even though we were only a couple of miles into the race – took my vest off yet again, and I was fine. Around three miles is where Mike Bennett usually goes past me, and I was expecting much the same this time, but I hadn’t seen him at the start – he’d arrived very late, started after everyone else, and had to work his way through the field, so he didn’t pass me this time. He got to see every other Strider in the race, mind …
Round Souter Lighthouse, then down past Whitburn Firing Range, and then like last year, the whole field in front of me avoided descending early to the beach, and cut back up to the grass at the top, joining the top end of the prom. Round the sea front in balmy conditions, then the run-in on good firm sand to the finish.
David had finished with a fantastic time of just over 45 minutes – showing how his marathon training had paid off, as well as demonstrating (again) how unnecessary marathon recovery seems to be! I was pleased to do a bit faster than last year, followed by Mike with, hot on his heels, Graham who had a great run on not a great deal of training. Sandra Graham was then first Strider lady home, also collecting third FV45 prize – well done Sandra! Andy Jordan was next home, a lot quicker than last time, as was Nina, a full four minutes faster than before. Nigel, Andrew, Stef and Barrie were next, followed by Debs who was – well – really quite chuffed to be in front of Dougie. Lots of good runs further down the field, far too many for me to waffle on about here, but it was good to see lots of familiar faces out racing again, and indeed familiar old faces if that’s not being rude.
Congratulations also to Jan Young for taking the third FV55 prize! This wasn’t one of those races where there were only three FV55 runners, either – remind her 33 other 55+ women started this one when she starts being modest. I don’t think she realised she was in the frame for this, as no sooner had she collected her top-quality picnic rug than she turned around and started running back to the start – Swaledale training!
Excellent race once again.
|1||Alasdair Tatham||North York Moors AC||M||1||38:16|
|30||Claire Simpson||Chester le Street||F||1||43:23|
|310||Stephanie Barlow *||F35||56:18|
|341||Barrie John Evans||M60||57:00|
|353||Debs Goddard *||F35||57:21|
* Subject to dental records check.
We had a massive turnout at the Pier-to-Pier – no less than thirty-three Striders. Good to see quite a few new members having a go at this one. Also, many thanks to supporters along the route – George Nicholson took some great photos on Nigel’s camera (see link below – Dougie also has a nice selection), Tom’s family were out, Jean’s other half, Margaret Thompson … to name but a few. The weather forecast described rain approaching from the south, so we were lucky to get the whole race run before it turned up, though there was quite a stiff breeze to run into – kept us all cool, though, as it was bright and sunny.
High tide this year, so not much beach available at the start. Quite a soggy run down the beach before the first choice of route as we got up onto the grass. This year nearly the whole field round me seemed to use the same line, avoiding the cliff edge – a few drifted over towards the road. I hadn’t noticed any other Striders in front of me so far, but soon a familiar vest came up on my shoulder – Mike Bennett, who’d legged it to the start, after getting his Cambridge Folk Festival tickets organised over the web! He slowly receded into the distance …
Round Souter Lighthouse, then down past Whitburn Firing Range, then another choice: this time, like last year, the whole field in front of me avoided descending to the beach, and cut back up to the grass at the top, and joined the top end of the prom. Round the sea front, then the run-in on increasingly soft sand, which was a hard end to an otherwise excellent race.
Tom came in after me, with a very good time considering his knee problem, and Graham wasn’t far behind, with another good run. John Hutch was next in, followed by Sandra, who was first lady home for the second year. Lots of good runs further down the field, far too many for me to waffle on about here, but it was good to see lots of familiar faces out racing. Congratulations to Wendy Rowell for taking the third FV55 prize!
A blue rain jacket to everyone this time, adding to the list of classic P2P mementoes – not bad at all, though as Graham said, as soon as you put it on, which you needed to in the wind, you became invisible! A sea of blue. Excellent race once again!
Footnote: Some of us noticed Jeff Brown, the sports chap off Look North, at the finish. He did the run in 53:04, finishing in 205th place. Can someone please sign him up …
|1||James Buis||Heaton Harriers||M32||40:12|
|28||Michelle Holt||Sunderland Harriers||F25||1||44:39|
* Now come on, Jackie. I know you don’t look a day over 21, but still …
|1||Tim Field||Sunderland Harriers||M41||39:14|
|22||Louise Noble||Sunderland Harriers||F26||44:39|