Nine keen Belle Vue Racers (eleven including support team Barry and Lynda) descended bright-eyed in glorious sunshine on Astley and Tyldesley Miners Welfare Club to collect numbers and gather themselves for the start of the 2016 edition of the Gin Pit 5 mile race, in and around the adjacent woodland trails. For a mix of veterans (“This is my eighth Gin Pit!”) and first-timers (“How many loops?”), the race set off up the long but subtle incline for the first of four runs at it at a decent lick. After the field thinned a little once into the woodland, the course twisted and turned through the trees, providing plenty of challenge and just enough mud underfoot to keep you on your toes.
Meng Tang was first BVR man home (35:15), followed closely by first Belle Vue woman, Phoebe Willis (36:18). Ruth powered home to finish the race that was her first in Belle Vue colours in 2013, to end a morning of excellent running. Well done also to James, Yana, Kath, Rachel, Andrew and Janet; a fantastic sharpener for next week’s start to the cross country season.