Weekly News- Saturday 10th December

Saturday 10th December

Westbury Harriers – Weekly News

Editors Piece

The count down to Christmas continues…..only 15 days to go! I’ve got my Christmas tree up and the flashing lights are all sparkling outside. Next,  I’ve got my Christmas meal to look forward to after the Weston Prom. I’m planning on a quick run so I can be the first to the bar!

Don’t forget the European Cross Country Championships will be on telly this Sunday. Join Steve Cram and Paula Radcliffe as Europe’s leading men’s and women’s cross country athletes battle for the medals at La Mandria Park in Turin.

The highlights will be on BBC2 form 4pm and live 08:30-12:45 on Red Button, BBC iPlayer and BBC Sport website.

Tuesday Running at Yate Track and Thursday Intervals

Details will be on facebook nearer the time. Note there will NOT be an interval session on the Thursday due to the Weston Prom and Christmas meal that evening.

Club Championship

Since I’ve been in the club the Christmas Cracker 10k, organised by Weston Athletic Club, has been a regular feature in the Club Championship series. This year was no exception and 28 Westbury Harriers joined the 2,000 runners on the Weston-super-Mare sea front for a festive run.

It was the 34th time the event has been held and each year the route follows a similar route. The start is under the pier, and then we do a large loop of the beach before heading towards Uphill. From Uphill the runners have a little respite as a short section is on tarmac, before coming off the Promenade for a final dash to the finish line by the pier.

Tradition dictates some form of festive fancy dress must be worn and we had Santas, elves, penguins, snowmen and others. Perhaps if you don’t wear something Christmassy you should have a penalty time applied!

The results are available, although I’ve been told there are some timing and category errors so you’ll need to be patient before the Club Championship results can be updated. If you can check your own results and let the organisers know if anything is amiss that would be helpful. I will say well done to all the Westbury Runners that took part. https://chiptimingresults.co.uk/results.aspx?CId=61&RId=513&EId=1&dt=0&adv=1

The next event in the series is the Riverbank Rollick on Sunday 15th January. The event is organised by Thornbury Running Club and personally I think this is one of the tougher trail events you can do. At just shy of 10 miles it’s a challenging course of bridlepaths, fields and woodland. Just hope the weather is frosty, otherwise there’ll be an awful lot of mud to contend with! Oh yes, and do give Mr Blobby a big wave as you pass. To enter use the link below. https://www.thornburyrunningclub.co.uk/trc-races/riverbank-rollick/

Member of the Month Winners- Senior and Junior

We had several nominations for the senior member of the month making the section very difficult for the committee. After some deliberation it was decided that Lorna Miller should be this month’s winner. Lorna is a  relatively new club member who has got herself involved in all aspects of the club very quickly. A regular on Mondays, Wednesdays (has tried the social run and hill session) and Thursdays. She has also raced extremely well in the Gwent league and Tri Counties.

Lorna is pictured below after a recent hills training session. She is crouched down, wearing the blue Great Bristol T-shirt.

The junior winner is Maeve Robinson. Maeve works extremely hard with her training and regularly competes for the club.

Up and Running vouchers will be on the way to you both soon.

Group Club Runs

I have some important announcements from the clubs favourite runner leader.

Monday 12 December, Brailsford Lights Run

The Monday evening groups will be running to the Brailsford lights this week. Christmas fancy dress is encouraged but not compulsory! We will be going for a quick Christmas drink afterwards at the Black Swan in Stoke Lane if you would like to join us there. Please book on to your group run using Run Together in the usual way.

Wednesday Evening Social Run 

On Wednesday 14 December we will be doing our Christmas lights run around Clifton and the City centre. There will be a Group 5 paced option as well as the usual Group 4 pace run. We will see who turns up and either run some or all of the route together or split up if that works better. Probably a slightly shorter run than usual with a few extra photo stops, some of us will be racing at the Weston Prom run on the Thursday and need to save some energy! Christmas fancy dress is encouraged but not compulsory. An informal social run booked through Facebook in the usual way. 

Club Membership Year Changes

The club membership year is to change to align with the England Athletics year, from 1st April to March 31st. There will be no membership fees due for the period 1st January 23 to 31st March 23. 

This ensures the correct EA fees are paid and also reduces the administration burden for the club and potential membership errors.

The new membership fees for 23/24 will be £45 for adults, £35 for juniors/students (includes Gwent entry fees) and £10 for second claim members. It includes the £17 England Athletic fee (with the exception of 2nd claim membership)

Centenary Sub Committee

We are looking for two members to join the Centenary Sub Committee to help decided how we celebrate this important milestone.  Meetings will initially be by Zoom.

If you’re interested let me know and I’ll pass your details onto Jim Murphy.

Secret Santa 10miler and the Shirehampton Dash

Well done to both Seema Srivastava who ran the Secret Santa and Audrey and Benoit who competed the  Shirehampton Dash. 

Seema (pictured wearing yellow) was placed 6th in the 10 miler trail event. Audrey and Benoit, pictured in their Santa outfits enjoyed a 5k, family friendly road run, starting in Shirehampton.

The John H Collins Gwent Cross Country -Pembrey Country Park 3rd Dec. Women’s Team Report

A big thank-you to all those that came and raced. Everyone ran really well. 

Bridget Belfourd SL 11th, Katie Hughes V45 19th, Vicky Tester V35 29th, Tamsin Chick V35 39th, Emma Woodworth V45 68th, Jayne Pemble V45 88th, Abigail Oliver V35 100th, Heidi Andrews V45 133rd, Judy Knight V55 136th, Ellie Bourdeaux V45 159th, Helen Kershaw V65 175th, Marilyn Palmer V65 179th, Eithne Noonan V65 183rd, Kay Ridgwell V55 195th, Nicola Derrick V45 201st 

 From 50 at Blaise to 15 ladies at Pembrey. A set of faithful Gwent leaguers made the journey to Pembrey, with everyone saying how much they enjoyed the course. It was worth the drive as it is a beautiful venue. Conditions were fast underfoot but still a testing course, with a small sand dune thrown in for good measure. The temperature had dropped considerably from the 2nd fixture only 3 weeks previously. As you can see from the photo, the ladies were not so keen to leave the tent this time!


Bridget continued her magnificent form with her best Gwent position to date in 11th, Katie 19th a season best position, Vicky 29th and Tamsin 39th coming in evenly spaced intervals with Emma completing the A team in 68th. Nice to see Ellie and Nicola returning from injury to be able to join us again. Less numbers meant we did struggle with our overall team positions with most teams unfortunately moving down. However, the V45s did well and moved up into 2nd place and the V65s are still in 1st place overall and it is a Westbury 1,2,3 in the V65 individual standings at the moment.  

Senior team 5th on the day, B Team 21st, C team 46th – out of 62nd teams. The A team managed to hold its 2nd position overall. Reserve Division – B team moved down from 2nd to 3rd in the reserve division, C team moved down from 4th to 5th, D team 10th, E team 13th, F team 17th, G team 20th, H team 24th, I team 32nd and J team 39th  

Current Age groups team standings 

  • U23 – 4th (moving down from 3rd) 
  • V35 – 3rd (moving down from 1st) 
  • V45 – 2nd (moving up from 3rd) 
  • V55 – 3rd (moving down from 2nd) 
  • V65 – Holding on to 1st with the B team moving down to 3rd from 2nd

Race report by Tamsin Elson Chick

The John H Collins Gwent Cross Country -Pembrey Country Park 3rd Dec. Men’s Team Report

Well done to the 11 Senior Men that made the long journey to Pembrey Country Park, Carmarthenshire on a chilly day for the 3rd (of 5) Gwent League fixture of the season.

Oli Beale (28th) led the men home (pictured below, photo credit Paul Stillman) running consistently well as always, backed up by Alex Hamblin (53rd), Chris Palmer (77th), strong finishing Jack Derrick (88th), and Nick Faye (134th) bouncing back well after a DNF at the county champs to complete the A team.

Ever reliable Robin Phillips (169th) and Alastair Blackwood (192nd) followed, with Paul Stuart (233rd), Matt Munday (234th) making his season debut, Geraint Torrington (278th), and Mark Munday (326th) completing the team. It was a great effort by all and rewarded by arguably one of the best cross country courses around with a mixture of parkland, forest trails, and sections of dunes.

The A team finished 8th in Division 1 in the fixture and are in a solid mid table 7th overall after the 3 fixtures. The B team came 9th on the day are 6th overall (other category team overall positions are currently U23 (16th), V35 (6th), V45 (7th), & V55 16th).

We are looking for a good turnout at the 4th fixture on Saturday 11th Feb at the scenic Margam Park, Port Talbot.

It was nice to pick up the Division 2 Champions Plate from last season representing the great achievement from last years team manger Scott Campbell and the team!

Race report by Chris Palmer

Weston Prom and Christmas Meal

Sandra Bailey-gard haș just reminded me we have 45 people attending the Christmas Meal next Thursday after the Weston Prom. The meal is over at the Brewers Fair, just across the road from the Marine Parade and please be there, ideally  before, but by 8:30pm at the latest.

If you’re also running the Prom the Race HQ is at the Bay Cafe in the Tropicana along Marine Parade (BS23 1BE). 

The five mile race (8.04k) starts near the Race HQ at 7:30pm. I’m afraid I can’t see any mention of being able to enter on the day so I suggest entering on line today. https://westonac.co.uk/weston-prom-run/

Gwent League Fixtures

The next Gwent League fixture will take place on Saturday 11th February 2023 at Margam Park, Port Talbot. Course map and timetable will be added to the league website shortly. https://www.gwent-league.org.uk/fixtures.html

Strava Segment of the Week

Well done to Katie Hughes on a chilly afternoon run today. Katie did a 12km loop with a second fastest time on Strava segment Parry’s Drop in a time of 2:54

Diary Dates

Monday 12th December Brailsford Christmas Lights Run

Thursday 15th December Weston Prom Race 4 by Weston AC

Friday 16th December Night Race 1, Beechenhurst Lodge, by Rogue Runs

Saturday 17th December Skirrid Fell Race, via Fabian 4 site

Thursday 22nd December Last formal training session.

Thursday 5th January Formal training resumes

Thursday 12th January Night Race 2 Wye Valley and Piercefield Park

Sunday 15th January  Riverbank Rollick (Club Championship event)

Saturday 21st January Kymin Winter Race, see Fabian4 for details.

Sunday 5th February Doynton Hard Half, a horrible cross country hosted by Emersons Green Running Club

Saturday 11th February Margam Park Gwent League (Club Championship event)

Saturday 4th March Pont-y-pŵl Park Gwent League

Sunday 12th March Lisbon Half Marathon, part of the Super Half Series

Saturday 18th March 20 and 1/2 Fission. Road event, good tester for an upcoming marathon

Friday 31st March Severn Bridge Twilight 5 (and Club Championship event)

Sunday 16th April Frenchay 10k, it’s hilly!

Saturday 8th to Sunday 9th July Brecon Fans Race Weekend. Horseshoe 10 miler and Pen y Fan

Saturday 19th August Race the Train, trail event and you chase the choo choo

Editor this Week

Ian Gawinowski is Westbury Harriers Communications Officer and can be contacted via communication@westburyharriers.co.uk