Weekly News – Saturday 1st January

Saturday 1st January

Westbury Harriers – Weekly News

Editors Piece

I hope everyone had a great Christmas and New Year and best wishes for 2022! I thoroughly enjoyed my break over Christmas, although I did eat far too many chocolates and consume too much beer.

I certainly felt the Christmas excesses when running with a few of the club last night during the traditional New Years Eve social run. The half marathon route at a relaxed pace took us along the docks during an exceptionally warm night. 

It was a particularly significant night for Mark Andrews (pictured bottom right) because as we headed homeward, down Parry’s Lane, Mark accomplished his goal of running 2,021 miles for the year, a very impressive mileage! I did joke that this year he could make life a lot easier for himself by working in kilometres instead!

Yate Track Sessions and Thursday Intervals

The session at Yate and the Thursday intervals (plus, if we are on grass or road) will be posted nearer the time on facebook. 

Membership Renewals

All current members of the club should have received an e-mail to remind them that club renewals are now due. It may be worth checking your junk e-mail box if you don’t think you’ve received a reminder yet. 

Within the e-mail is a link that will take you to membermojo where you can confirm you details and make a renewal payment. 

If you are not yet a member please go to the membership area of the club website (link provided below) and apply using the ‘Join Now’ button. Annual membership runs from January to December and includes the England Athletics registration fee of £15. The annual membership costs are £25 junior/student and £40 adult. 


Interval training resumes on Thursday 6th January from Coombe Dingle Sports Complex and then the following week on Monday 10th January we have the start of the group runs. Other groups will probably start Tuesday 4th including the Yate track session. For all runs please just check the date, time and location on the RunTogether site, link below. https://groups.runtogether.co.uk/WestburyHarriersRunningClub/Runs

Weston Christmas Cracker

Just before Christmas, on Sunday 19th December, we had the Weston Christmas Cracker, Weston Athletic Club’s largest race with people coming back regularly to take part in the festive fun. Most make the effort to wear fancy dress and there are plenty of Santa’s, elves and snowmen running the 10k course, which includes large sections of the beach.

This year there were over 20 runners from the club taking part wearing some very festive costumes. We also had some impressive finishing times, with several of the club achieving top 10 category positions. 

Tri Counties Cross Country Championships 2021

It was a foggy, dull day but the Westbury Harriers’ results were truly bright and sparkling. The highlight was the Ladies Team performance with Team Manager Tamsin Chick putting together a top class group of runners that convincingly won the Tri Counties trophy and seven individual medals. The Men’s team, led by Scott Campbell, was also in good form – runners up in the Tri Counties Championship and with five individual medallists.

Our juniors were as strong as ever, winning six out of ten individual Avon County titles, with team wins for both our Under 15 Boys and Under 15 Girls.

(There were no Avon County presentations on the day so medals will be sent to the club).

Westbury Harriers’ Avon County Medallists

Senior Women & Masters (Over 35 / 45/ 55) Floren Scrafton Individual Silver Tri Counties Team Gold, Catherine Treble Gold V35 Tri Counties Team Gold, Katie Hughes Gold V45 Tri Counties Team Gold, Lucy Richens Silver V35 Tri Counties Team Gold, Vicky Tester Bronze V35, Sandy Masters Silver V55, Nicola Derrick Silver V45

Senior Men & Masters (Over 40 / 50 / 60) Alex Hamblin Tri Counties Team Silver, Scott Campbell Gold V40 Tri Counties Team Silver, Tom Reed Tri Counties Team Silver, Alan Uren Tri Counties Team Silver, Chris Palmer Bronze V40 Tri Counties Team Silver, Anthony Glover Tri Counties Team Silver, Ewan Paton Silver V50, Mike Mewse Gold V60, David George Bronze V60

U11 Girls Gold: Elisa Jones Silver: Lola Simpson Bronze: Darcy Simpson

U13 Girls Gold: Estelle Lowe

U13 Boys Silver: Augustin Downing

U15 Girls Gold Laura Chance Silver Elen Ruck Bronze Corinne Jones and Team Gold : Laura Chance, Elen Ruck, Corinne Jones, Felicity Lowe

U15 Boys Gold Akira Bees and Team Gold : Akira Bees, Murray Pearson, Thomas Darton, Jack Foster, Henry Watson.

U17 Women Silver Abigail Woodworth

U17 Men Gold Seamus Robinson

U20 Women Gold Rhiannon Paton

U20 Men Silver Greg Hayward

Race report by Mike Mewse.

Christmas Social Run from Blaise Pavilion Club House

The morning commenced with wind and rain, not a promising start to a club social run from the club house at Blaise. Fortunately the weather gods soon changed their minds and we were blessed with blue skies and sunshine for the duration of the run and mulled wine and minced pies afterwards. 

There was also an opportunity to say a big thank you to Tamsin Chick, Louise Pretty and Sandra Bailey-Gard, not only for organising this run but for all their work during the year. The hard-working trio were presented with flowers as a gesture of thanks from the whole club.

Clevedon Boxing Day Race

Sunshine, a big field of racers (769 finishers) and big crowds of spectators for the Boxing Day 4 mile race. Nineteen Westbury Harriers threw off the shackles of excess food and drink to race the tough 4 mile course around Clevedon.

Ex-Westbury runner Felix McGrath defended his title to win again in 19.22 followed by Bristol & West teammate Jack Bancroft (19.33) and then our own Ben Rawlins in 3rd with an excellent 19.57. 

There was a good category win for Robyn Ellis – 1st FV40 in 27.01 – (narrowly edging out husband Matt by 0.2 of a second). Scott Campbell produced another top class run – 16th place and 2nd V40 in 21.46 – after his winning (V40) run in last Sunday’s Avon County XC champs.

Our FV70 ladies were again in top form with Shirley Hume 2nd in 33.53 and Marilyn Palmer 3rd in 35.28.

Alex Hamblin was 14th in 21.44 closely followed by fast emerging Tom Reed 17th in 21.49.

New boy Ben Wood had a very good race for 33rd place in 23.33 with the dependable Robin Phillips 48th in 24.30, followed by the Ellis family. Mike Mewse recorded a respectable 135th in 27.52 and Trevor Fitsall dipped inside the top 200 with 29.11 for 191st place.

Rich Hughes battled a sore hamstring for 275th 31.49, Clive “Tough of the Track” Attwood returned to action with 33.24. More good runs from James Fox 34.32, Tim Carr 35.19, Gill Anagnostakis 5th FV60 in 35.20 and Matt Simmonds 39.04.

Lindsay Hall (39.12) used the race as a warm up for an open water (non wetsuit !! ) swim session and was last seen heading towards Lundy Island – tough girl!!

Race report by Mike Mewse and photos courtesy of David George.

Christmas Treasure Hunt

Christmas just wouldn’t be the same without a festive Treasure Hunt and this year was no exception. Many of you took up the challenge to find the ‘somethings’ and come up with a Christmas film. The somethings to hunt down included a festive scene, a Christmas tree, Mistletoe, Holly, a Robin, Christmas Lights, a snowman, a reindeer, a Christmas jumper and a seasonal selfie.

As it was a Christmas special we had a running voucher for the winner so Sarah and I have had to put on our judging hats and come up with a winner. It was all very close with some especially cryptic film titles to work out (and I needed Sarah’s help with some of them!). Valerie Hughes, Shirley Hume, Eithne Noonan, Sandra Williams, to name just a few participants were very creative but there can only be one winner. 

We therefore decided that this year Richard Hughes is the winner and has taken the Treasure Hunt crown. His somethings were very festive and we especially enjoyed seeing his Robin in flight. Plus his seasonal selfie (yes, there is tinsel in the background) was a winner, a cross between Jon Pertwee from Dr Who and Derek Zoolander’s  ‘Blue Steel’ famous look.

A Christmas 5k

Seema tells me that she took Hari, who runs for the Junior Academy, for a 5K run on Christmas Day. She then goes on to say as newish members of the Harriers, they are looking forward to running more with the club in 2022. 

Pictured below, Seema and family enjoy a Christmas run.

Winter Fell Series 

Finn Goodhew, the club’s fell running guru had reminded me that places are going fast for the next event in the winter south-west fell race series, and it would be good to see some Westbury’s at the event.

Craig Yr Allt Winter Fell Race is a 6.3km taking place on Saturday 8th January and sign-up is on the Fabian4 website.  https://sites.google.com/site/welshfellrace/individual-races/craig-yr-allt-winter?fbclid=IwAR2F8SUaci25DbX57NAI6_wrXgJs-R-NmLdT16XGnRbDaRphpt43unxKRCE

South West Cross County Championships

Good luck to those in the club running the X-Country championships at RNAS Merryfield tomorrow. The forecast is it will be warm, but probably very muddy underfoot!

Strava Segment of the Week

Well done to Sandra Williams on her New Years Day park run at Ashton Court this morning. Sandra complete the course (and Strava segment ‘Ashton Court Park Run’) in a time of 26:23. Extra points for running it in fancy dress!

Diary Dates

Sunday 2nd January 2022, South West XC Championships RNAS Merryfield, Ilminster

Saturday 8th January 2pm Winter Fell Series Craig Yr All Fell Race

Sunday 16th January Riverbank Rollick, Thornbury 

Thursday Jan 20th 7:30 pm. Off Road Night Race 2  Wye Valley and Piercefield Park, Chepstow Race Course.  Wye Valley and Piercefield Park. Easy access, good parking and a cosy event base at Chepstow Race Course … plus our usual quality course.

Sunday 23rd January Doynton Hard Half Marathon, a ‘horrible’ cross country. https://www.doyntonhardhalfmarathon.co.uk

Sunday 23rd Jan Speedway 10k. Beachley. https://tinyurl.com/2p8f7nf7

11th February 7:30pm Beechenhurst Lodge FoD Night Race. A beginners course totally on forest trails with no mud. Road shoes may be suitable (depending on weather conditions in the days leading up to the event). This is a fast course with a ‘hard- pack’ gravel surface throughout. 

Saturday 19th February Gwent League Cross Country, Blaise Castle

Sunday 20th February Ironwood Challenge 2022 Off road 10k trail race.  https://tinyurl.com/2p8atcez

Saturday 19th March Gwent League Cross Country, Singleton Park, Swansea

Saturday 19th March 20 & 1/2 Fission ,fast flat 20 miler starting at Berkeley Power Station. Half marathon option too. Now in its 7th year, this event has sold out every year. 

Sunday 7th July Tintern Trot, 10k trail run along the Wye Valley.

Saturday 30th July Magor 10K, fast, flat and furious.

Saturday 24th September, Uphill to Wells Relay. An off-road relay race starting at Uphill beach and finishing at Wells Cathedral. The route is 90% off-road and follows the West Mendip Way along footpaths and bridleways. The race is a ‘hand-over’ relay, run without marshals, water stations or other assistance. Teams are responsible for their own safety and for researching the route although their progress will be monitored at check-points at the end of every leg. https://www.uphilltowells.com/default.aspx

Editor this Week

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