Diary dates: Autumn/Winter 17-18

Wimbledon is here.  School is almost out.  Summer is here!  So here, to rain on your parade, are some dates for the Autumn/Winter season.  Brrrr!
First up, the cross-country dates:
Manchester Area League: 14th October, 11th November, 2nd December, 13th January 2018, 10th February – more details to follow.
South East Lancashire League: 18th November (Heaton Park), 16th December (Tandle Hills), 20th January 2018 (Leigh Sports Village), 17th February (Astley Park, Chorley)
The rest:
1st October – Gin Pit 5 / Congleton Half (entries open for both events)
5th November – Through the Villages (entries open) 
3rd December – Stockport 10 (entries open) 
31st December – Bowstones Fell Race – Happy New Year!
Full race calendar to follow.  In the meantime, enjoy the sunshine!

Flaming June!

Scorchio! Ruth and Debbie versus the Freckleton Half Heat, and, again, with Linda, Andy and Lisa at Round the Resers. Annie, Vicky, Julia, Yana and Phoebe at Le Tour de Tameside – Coach Corrigan in the reflection!  As ever, well done all.

Lisa and Leah @ Cotswold 113

A runner’s high has a lot to answer for.
Back in November after running the Snowdonia Marathon I persuaded Leah to sign up and join me for a Half Ironman. How hard could it be? We could both ‘probably’ do all three sports. After all, it’s only a 1.2 mile swim, 56 miles on the bike and a half marathon. It’s just a bit of practice, yes? Just sticking them all together.
About the same time I was struck down with (undiagnosed) whooping cough. Joy.
So Leah carried on training – and stormed her London Marathon, a mere 6 weeks before the Cotswold 113, our first middle-distance triathlon, and I eventually got better after 5 months.
In April we (and Kath) both got into Salford Quays for the first time (brrrrrrr) and for one of us it was all about conquering fear of the murky depths.
So here we are, early June and we’re in the Cotswolds.  It’s 3.30 am and we’re up and getting ready for a 5 am transition set-up. Zzzzz. But it’s quite the buzz. There were some serious looking athletes as well as plenty of first-timers. We’re in the 6 am start wave and the water in the lake is positively balmy. 19.5 degrees. Happy days!
Leah is super speedy and is one of the first out of the water, I’m one of the last but that’s OK. Six weeks ago I was hanging onto a buoy in The Quays in fear. Look how far I’ve come!
The swim-bike transition was smooth – no wetsuit traumas! – and off we go for our bike ride. It’s flat and fast. Well as fast as we can cycle anyway. We were both overtaken by most of the field but I think it may have been because we didn’t have a pointy helmet.
We both come in just over 3 hrs 20 mins but it felt like a long time to be on the road. The bike-run transition was just a quick change of shoes and off we go with calves that feel like they’re about to pop and Achilles Tendons taut like violin strings. Leah had a great run and finished in 6:02:44 and I was not too far behind in 6:26:59.
Thanks to the generosity of friends, family and colleagues we both raised a lot of money for MNDA in memory of our friend Steve Mycio. Thank you to everyone who sponsored us. It was a great day and I don’t think either of us has ruled out doing a full one but I’m waiting for full or semi-retirement before that! Now. Where’s the Summer??  Lisa D.

London Marathon 2017

Belle Vue Racers were represented at the London Marathon this year by Leah Evans and Annie Hirsch.  Beautiful weather over the weekend of 22nd and 23rd April set the tone for a great event.  Registration at the Excel on Saturday afternoon managed to get the nerves going a little.  Annie managed to lose her envelope containing her number and timing chip in the crowds for a few minutes – which felt like quite a long time! Unfortunately for the BVRs they had different starting zones, Leah at Blue with all the elites and Royals whilst Annie was at the relatively quiet backwater of Green start. Having been packed onto busy trains full of marathon runners there was a short walk to the starting areas. However all the start zones had enormous toilet queues which did mean there was ample time to strike up new friendships whilst waiting.
It was somewhat of a relief when the time reached 10 a.m – not that we could start running then as there is always a few minutes delay to crossing the start line – but to know that the main marathon had begun and soon we would be running was exciting. London marathon is rightly famous for the support from the crowds – it was very busy along the way which was particularly helpful over the last few miles. Leah and Annie were supported by family and friends and they made sure we saw them among the throngs. It is a great route through London streets which are not often not traffic free but filled with runners and supporters.
Annie and Leah were pleased with their times – 3.56 and 4.01.  At the finish we met up at the Motor Neurone Disease Association (mnda) meeting point where leg massages, cups of tea and nourishing food were all on offer. Leah and Annie were fundraising to support mnda in memory of BVR member Steve Mycio who died of the condition in 2016. Thank you to all BVRs for your support and generous donations.  Hope you are all in the ballot for 2018!


Good Friday: Salford 10K


IMG_0004It was cool weather at Good Friday’s Salford 10K with some light rain.  There was however a healthy crowd of runners to race two laps of the streets of Salford. For BVR, the fast course generated decent personal times, and good PBs were enjoyed by Ruth and Damien, with Damien coming home first among the men, Yana first among the women.  Well done to all runners.
Next Championship event: Yarrow River Bluebell 10K Trail – Sunday 7th May

Track closures / City playing at home

As the track at Sportcity is being repaired on 13th and 20th April, we are planning to have training sessions on those evenings in Philips Park, which is near to Sportcity, on the other side of Alan Turing Way.  We will meet in the car park which is for the tennis centre.  To get to that car park, instead of turning down Aston New Road, continue on Alan Turing Way and turn left into the car park signposting the tennis parking area.  We will set off at 7 p.m to the park so please arrive before then.
On the following Thursday, April 27th, Manchesters United and City are playing at the Etihad which will mean the traffic will be heavy.  That night we will meet at Debdale Park which is off Hyde Road. There is a car park at the end of Wall Way, before the Gym.  Post code for Debdale Park is M18 7LJ.

Autumn / Winter 2016-17 Champions

Congratulations to our Men’s and Women’s Champions for the 2016-17 Autumn / Winter season – Andy Wood and Annie Hirsch.
In the men’s competition, it was Men’s Captain Patrick O’Brien who for the second consecutive season had to settle for silver, with our recent Spring / Summer Men’s Champion Vic Walsh taking third.   The women’s competition also played a little musical chairs, with Annie again rising to the top, Julia Foy, like Patrick, again taking second spot (as well as the Progress Award – congratulations, Julia!) and our 2016 Spring / Summer champion, Ruth Amin, taking third.  Congratulations to all runners who completed the season!

XC: A season of surprises

SPECIAL MERIT AWARD – as for the last three seasons, there will be a Special Merit Award to be presented at the Senior Presentation. Is there a member of your Club who merits an award? We would like each Club to nominate one of their members who has made a significant contribution to their Club’s participation in the League. They don’t have to be a competing member, they might be a coach or a team manager – anyone who has made a contribution. Your nomination should be submitted to the League with the reason why you feel that person merits a special award. The nomination should be made by your Club Contact. The League’s Working Group will decide the winner. Announcement of the winner will be made at the Senior Presentation on Friday 3rd March.
Manchester Area Cross Country League
Belle Vue Racers enjoyed a hugely successful cross country season, competing in both the Manchester Area and South East Lancashire Leagues.  It was a season of wonderful surprises: alongside old favourites like Parks Woodbank and Heaton (twice), we welcomed a new MACCL race at the University Playing Fields and through Kenworthy Woods, a relentlessly undulating, challenging and overwhelmingly well received course, and, in the SELCC league, a new fixture towards Chorley, another tough, hilly, wet but hugely enjoyable tour through Astley Park.  In the Manchester Area League’s divisional structure, the Men’s Senior Team fielded a full team at every race and won glorious promotion to the second division (the Championship in new money) – well done, lads!  The challenge now is to stay up.
Proud of our endeavours, a small band of Belle Vue Racers made their way to Wilmslow Rugby Club for a beer and hotpot to celebrate the completion of a great season and to congratulate individual and team winners (a rare chance to see what those at the front actually look like!).  But there were also other plans afoot.  Our Lynda had been nominated for the League’s Special Merit Award for her outstanding contribution to our community club over the years.  And then came the final wonderful surprise of the season … Lynda’s name was read out as the winner of the award!  Congratulations Lynda from all of us at BVR!
Here is Club Secretary Ruth’s nomination of Lynda in full:
Since 1989 Lynda has been a central part of the Club initially by supporting Ed Cheetham in establishing the Club, then being an active member and competing in many races.  She continued to support the Club through the challenging years when we had to leave Belle Vue and did not have a base until finally gaining our place at Sport City, where we train on  Thursday nights.  When Ed died in 2003, taking on re-establishing the Club can’t have been an easy task but every year since then she has not only been the Coach but carried out numerous duties, official and unofficial, to ensure that the Club has been a positive place for runners of all abilities to meet, to train, to compete, to build friendships, to carry on the ethos of the Club established in 1989 of being a welcoming Club to all.
The undoubted highlight of every winter has been our participation in the cross country races. Lynda has been at just about every cold, windy and wet start and finish line, and has often managed to pop up on the courses as well.  Her encouragement is genuinely second to none. If ever a runner has been in doubt of their ability to participate, she has reassured of their capabilities, strengths and achievements. Support at races has taken up a great deal of her free time, especially at weekends.
From a personal perspective I would just not have participated in as many races, or the difficulty of races if it hadn’t been for Lynda telling me that I could do it. I know that sentiment carries through from the fastest to the slowest runners, experienced to inexperienced.
We all appreciate her time and dedication to the Club and as a mark of our appreciation we made her the Honorary Chairperson of BVR.  The club will continue without her but she will be very greatly missed!


Provisional Spring/Summer Fixture List

Here is the provisional fixture list for the 2017 Spring / Summer Championship. There is a huge variety of challenging races you are encouraged to take part in.  (Bollington 10k is yet to declare.)
See you at Cloud 9.  Don’t forget full body cover as per FRA safety requirements.  And hard cash for all those Congleton cakes.
Cloud 9 Hill Race, Congleton
Sunday 5 March
Sold out
Wilmslow Half Marathon
Sunday 19 March
Radcliffe 10k MT
Sunday 9 April
Salford 10k Road Race
Friday 14 April
Yarrow River Blue Bell 10k Trail
Sunday  7  May
5000m Time Trial Sportcity
Thursday 18 May
Wincle Trout 9k Fell Race
Saturday 3 June
Sold out
Round the Resers 5 Mile MT
Wednesday 14 June
Evening Race
Tour of Tameside, X Trail, 10k
Thursday 15 June
Evening Race
Tour of Tameside, Hell on the Fell, 6 miles
Friday 16 June
Evening Race
Tour of Tameside, Hero Half Marathon
Saturday 17 June
Tour of Tameside, Dr Ron Hyde 7 mile
Sunday 18 June
Freckleton Half Marathon
Sunday 18 June
Rochdale 10k Road Race
Tuesday 4 July
Evening Race
Royton 5.5 Mile MT
Wednesday 12  July
Evening Race
Black Knight Charge
Wednesday 19 July
Evening Race
1 Mile Time Trial Sportcity
Thursday 20 July
Millbrook Monster
Wednesday 26 July
Evening Race
Meerbrook 15k
Saturday  29 July
Saddleworth 6 Mile Road Race
Wednesday 9 August
Evening Race
Bollington 10k
Stockport Hatters’ Half Marathon
Sunday 3  September
YMCA Harriers 5 Mile MT
Sunday 10 September
12 Minute Test Sportcity
Thursday 14 September

Andy’s Marathon Year

Belle Vue Marathon Legend, Andy Wood, treats marathons like some of us approach running for the bus.  Here is his take on his marathon 2016:
January: New Year’s Day, good start to the year, a mentally testing four-times out-and-back course on windy Liverpool front.
February: Lovely undulating trail marathon at a chilly Bolton Abbey.
April: Joined by fellow Belle Vue Racers for Manchester Marathon, sub-4 hour and 9 seconds quicker than last year’s ‘short course’.  Shortly followed by a nice 3-lap course in the grounds of Temple Newsam.
May: Out and back on the Tissington trail in a rainy Matlock.
June.Warm day for a very hilly 2-lap course in the shadows of the M62 in Huddersfield.
July: 6 laps around Gin Pit and Leigh, persuaded myself if I got around 5 laps I could walk the last, then talked myself into it only being 4 and a bit miles, so I might as well run the last lap – runners’ psychology !  Followed by a flat one, out and back on the Leeds/Liverpool Canal.  Finishing with the toughest of the year, in fact the toughest I’ve ever done: 20 miles of pleasant undulating trails around Snowdon, followed by a very slow – at times on all fours – climb to the misty summit, sliding six and a half hours later into Llanberis for numerous cups of tea!
August: Probably my favourite of the year, a very scenic trail marathon a round Hoad Hill in Ulverston. Also joined the remarkable Ben Smith and others on the 401 Challenge for a social marathon from Bramhall to Macclesfield and back, with various stops for butties and chips!
September: Back to the Leeds/Liverpool Canal for a flat one.
October: Overtaken on the racecourse by flying Belle Vue Racer Vic Walsh, then enjoyed the conditions and the help of a pacer to record  a rare sub-4 at Chester.  Later in the month was joined by Annie, Leah, Lisa and Patrick for old favourite, Snowdon Marathon. Cramp withstanding, all ran well and finished – pain is only temporary, pride is forever.
November: Time for a bit of recovery.
December: Training started for 2017.  AW