The 2009 3M Newton Ayclffe 10k

This is my second time running at this event. The first time I set my 10k PB. So I was a bit dissapointed with todays times. No excuses for a slow run. I went out to smash my 10k PB and failed miserably. Once again, like last week, I think the heat was a major factor although I remember last year being hot too. However as always I enjoyed it and the full Posse turned out for me today, which is always nice. I did manage to just beat the two lads in the picture.
Pos:- 194/374
Time:- 48:21
Garmin data Here
2009 Newton Aycliffe 10k

The 2009 mizuno Blaydon Race

Another first for me.
The 2009 Mizuno Blaydon Race. This is the biggest field of runners I have run with. It was as expected very crowded at the start. Around 4000 runners descended on the Cloth market, outside Balmbras. There was quite a buzz in the air. Live music and can-can dancers and an air of nostalgia as the lord Mayor stood there in all his finery with the starting bell, down on Collingwood St. ready to set us on our way.
I managed to catch up with Frankie from work and his daughter Emma, just as we were ready for the off. Half of my posse was up the other end at Blaydon waiting to see me in.
At 19:17 we were off, a bit later than expected. Elbows and ankles flailing, dodging, ducking and swerving for a bit of space. There was a lot of support from people along the route.
All except the ones waiting to cross the road at the Arena, on they’re way to see Boyzone. Then before you know it we were on Scotswood road passing the first live band belting out the Blaydon races. Brilliant. As we headed over the Scotswood Bridge I kind of lost my bearings as we went down under and turned back on ourselves a few times. Apparently to make the race a tad longer. Lots of speculation about the distance these days. What with GPS watches and the like. My garmin puts it at something like 6.1 Miles, but I did start it half way up the Cloth Market to try and get the start time right. Whereas the actual start line was in Collingwood Street. As we headed into Blaydon, I was well aware by then that Superman had been trying to pass me. The crowd were egging him on “come on superman” they yelled. It was to no avail as I kept my head down and beat him across the line.
If I can beat Superman there’s still a chance for me yet.
Huge wedges of Black pudding, large Pickles, ham and peas pudding Sandwich, Bottle of Broon,
Race certificate and a fab running shirt to finish a great night at the races!

Oh! me lads, ye shud a' seen us gannin,
Passin' the folks upon the road just as they were stannin'.
Thor wis lots o' lads and lasses there, all wi' smiling faces
Gannin' alang the Scotswood Road to see the Blaydon Races.

I could'nt resist putting than in.

1343rd of 3426 Finishers
Time :- 48:16
Garmin Data:- Here

2009 Blaydon Race

The 2009 Watergate 10k

Pos :- 34 of 63 finishers
Time:- 50:37

This is the first time I have ran this race, and its only in its second year.
Today must have been the hottest day of the year.
Even with an early start the temp must have been in the lower 20’s C.
My son and his cousin also ran today in the junior race. This formed part if not the whole of my warm up session.
I bumped into Vicki (Graceless whippet) and had a bit crack, she had a chat with the posse whilst I made my way to the start with the kids.
This is the second time out for my son. He was up against some good competition in his age group. He still managed to bag a medal and proud of it too. His cousin also managed to get a medal but was also rewarded with 3rd prize in her age group, so scored for a £5 sports voucher.
As per usual in the 10k I started off way too quick. (6.47 min/mile) So I had to calm it down some and soon settled into a good rhythm, a more sensible 7.5 - 8 min/mile. Then about half way nature called and I had to stop for a pit stop. At which point Vicki passed me. I then had a target to go for (sorry Vicki) I caught up with her as we entered the wood, which was fantastically cool and a welcome break from the sun. I struggled with the terrain in there, and watched Vicki carefully picking through the trail of weed, root and other lumpy stuff in front of me. On leaving the woods we had to climb the large hill we had been up before, once again.
I had passed Vicki by this point thinking she would sail past me on the hill. To my surprise the gaining footfalls were not hers but some bloke giving it large. With the hill fast approaching, I decided get the head down and switch to auto pilot.
My rather small but effectively fast strides up the hill had him done for. His footfalls no more in my ear, I coasted in to the finish slightly disappointed that I had no one to challenge to the finish line for the posse to get their moneys worth.
Vicki came in First in her category F35. Well done to her.

See My Garmin Data:- Here

2009 Watergate 10k

The 2009 Druridge Bay 10k

Position :- 107 of 502 timed finishers
Time :- 50:15

This is the second time around for me.
Last year I completed it in 49:48.
This year was not so good @ 50:15.
Now I know its early days but, I am starting to find my times are sliding. I have noticed this even in training, although I have shifted my goals from speed to distance as the GNR approaches. So not all bad.
I still thoroughly enjoyed this race for a whole stack of reasons. The obvious being it is such a beautiful location. We had lovely weather, even if it was on the hot side and, I was in really good company. As well as the usual posse, we had a good friend of ours who was also running. She was running for charity and a few other personal reasons. She also brought her posse with her, which was nice.

I did not take up the offer this year for a pre-race massage, as last year I did, and the sand loves the sticky oil they rub on your legs.

The race went well for me but, as ever I forgot about the few rather long hills this race has. The beach this year was also a bit of a struggle for me as unlike last year the sand, although wet, was rippled instead of smooth. Ouch! The heat was indeed an issue. It was pushing about 20 deg C . with not much of a coastal breeze. It claimed one poor guy about 100 yards from the finish line. I had just finished and heading back to the posse when I saw him collapse. I dont think it was anything more serious than having a few too many the night afore, although he did require medical attention. So I hope all is well. Looking forward to next years already. Great Race meeting.
See my Garmin Data:- Here
2009 Druridge Bay 10k

The 2009 Sunderland Pier to Pier

Position :- 345/980 finishers
Garmin Time :- 54:51
Official Time :- 56:53

The 2009 Pier to Pier.
I will remember this one for quite a while. This is my second time running this race. The first time, I started on the start line like everybody else. This time, due to the laid-on transport being late, I started from the car park at South Shields. Not impressed with that at all. By the time I got to the start line the whole field had gone, ... offski,....vanished! Just a shimmer in the distance. I now know how Formula 1 drivers must feel when penalised and told to start at the back. So off I went - all my plans out the window - just went for it. I was soon passing the ones at the back of the pack, who must have wondered where I came from. Before I knew it I was 2 miles into the race and catching people content to run 8 - 8.5 min miles. Plodded on to the drinks station and made up about 15 places by not having a drink. Feel at this point I must have passed half the pack! The race had the usual dilemma of which track to follow for the best gain. I checked on the map and I don't think there is much in it.
Tide was quite far in at the finish line so there was a mad dash in the soft sand (not easy) and managed to be passed by John Davidson, who I passed a few times in the course of the race and I thought he had had it. Not the case apparently. (Although I did pass 635 runners). Still a great race and of course the Posse were all there (thank you for your support).
I will e-mail the organisers about the duff transport arrangements though, as I was at the bus stop around 09:50. The bus arrived at 10:15. So 5 of us missed the start. The rest of the crowd at the bus stop used there own cars.
See my Garmin Data here
2009 Pier to Pier

The Wallsend ‘RISING SUN’ MT Race 2009

Position :- 78th of 148 finishers
Time:- 37:33

This race was ran on firm traffic-free paths around a country park in Longbenton.
(Just behind the Asda)Billed as a 5 Mile trail, it was as expected. quite an undulating course. We were well warned at the start that underfoot conditions would rapidly deteriorate. Well that never happened. Unless they were talking about the mountain's of dog poo on the trail!
5 miles is a strange distance for me cant quite get my pace even.The race started on a very narrow pathway where you had to put up with the flying limbs of others.It was a 2 lap race which I dont really know if I like. There's the fact that you know whats coming in the second half of the race, or another way to see it, if that floats your boat,is why not just do laps of a track.
Never mind I enjoyed the day as always.This was my first race using my Garmin 405. Which quietly did what it does best, logging all my data as I ran.( see link to data)I had it set to the overview screen so only had to glance to see pace,time,distance etc.
I had the posse with me, minus my mother in law, who was busy packing for her holly jolly's. The weather was suitable for racing. Cool to start and sun coming out later. Nice play area for the bairn. So much so, I think he prefeered it to watching the race. The finish line was hidden away so the posse missed the finish, in which I did a mad sprint at the end to catch up with and pass 2 runners from Blyth RC. ( I'm No55 in the pic)

See my Garmin Data :- here.
2009 Wallsend Rising Sun MT

March 2009

This is the Garmin 405 Forerunner.
My wife bought me one for my birthday.
Training will never be the same again.

The 2009 Absent Friends 5 Mile Trail Run

Cowpen Bewley Woodland Park

Position: - 52nd of 172 finishers.
Time: - 41:29

This was the Inaugural run in memory of Ann Johnson, who died last year. Ann was a member of the Billingham Marsh House Harriers. The race was great. Made even better by the adverse weather we have had recently. Think 5 Mile Mud bath! What great way to spend a Sunday morning.
This was a five mile trail race that really required proper trail shoes or spikes. Most of the time I was slipping and sliding all over. I found it difficult to keep track of where I was geographically. I was too busy keeping an eye on the trail to find the best route through the mud. Around the halfway mark the trail went through a ploughed field. Good quality deep mud in there. The posse were there with me of course. Unfortunately not much there for the wee fella to do, except cheer his auld da on.It must be the first time there has not been a play park in the vicinity of the race.They did have a duck pond and swans.
I think the inlaws enjoyed the atmosphere and they managed to find a vantage point atop a hill for veiwing.

May do this one again. Fab tech T-shirt to all finishers.
2009 Absent Friends Trail Race

The 2008 Heaton Harriers Memorial Road Race

Heaton Harriers Memorial Road Race.

Position: - 182nd of 313 finishers.
Time: - 47:20

I know it will sound familiar by now, but this was a bit different from the normal (what’s normal). First of all my biggest fan club was not there. But the next biggest was there (my father in law). This is the first race where I recall running against the wind. Not that I personally did much of that, I was tucked in behind a big bloke who was more than capable of taking the force nine gale on the chin. Two laps of the town moor, slap bang in the middle of the Toon. Found it easier to make up places by going through the large muddy puddles (dead brave me) that most people seemed to be avoiding. Nothing much else to say about it.
2008 Heaton Harriers Memorial Road Races

The 2008 Gibside Fruit Bowl 7 (6.2)

Gibside Fruit bowl 7
Position: - 214th of 413 Finishers
Time: - 52:23

Now known as the Fruit bowl 6.2 as they shortened it from 7 Miles to 6.2 Miles after some of the track fell in the river. This race is advertised as not flat. It should say no flat. If you fancy fell running this would fit the bill. The hills in this race beggar belief. I must admit to walking up at least 2 of them. Vicki : Graceless whippet did warn me they would be tough. Now there's tough and there is downright mountainous. If ever there was a race that required substantial hill work training, this has got to be it. I will have a go again in 2009 if possible but, I will be sure to train this time. Still, I was very pleased with my effort. Vicki managed 50:23 which placed her 172nd.
2008 Gibside Fruit Bowl 6

The 2008 Hetton Le Hole 10k

Michael Page Memorial Race.

Sunday 31st August 2008

Position: - 39th of 62 finishers.
Time: - 51:51

This race was a real challenge!
Well it was for my Sat Nav. What a really difficult place to find. Even when we did find it, we were at the wrong side of the park.
Once we arrived, well, what a really peaceful and pleasant place for an early morning Sunday Race.
I arrived with my biggest fans (my wife and son) and was pleasantly surprised at the locality of the race. There was a large and small manmade lake, a play park for the wee fella, ample parking and a really good atmosphere. I think that was down to numbers. Lining up with 61 other runners is quite cosy, almost like a team run. Not that I know what that’s like but have a feeling it would be similar. Weather was perfect. Race was pleasant. Tech T-shirt for our efforts. I will do this one again
next year.
2008 Hetton Le Hole

6th Race. The 2008 Darlington 10k & Junior Run

What should have been a cracking day, turned out to be a bit of a washout. Rain Spoiled play.
Fortunately for the wee fella, it stayed dry for the fun run. He managed to run 1.5k in about 10 minutes. The mayor was there at the end to award him with his medal. Magic.
The 3k juniors was showery throughout.
So by the time it came to the 10k things were looking grim.
But, the sun shone and dried up the roads a bit just in time for the start.
I managed a pretty good time of 47:29 which surprised me as i did not think I was doing that well. As usual I was too quick off the mark (must stop doing that) completing the first mile in around 7 minutes.

By the time I got to the water station second time around I was buggered. I drank a few mouthful's then drenched myself with the rest. Only for that to be followed by a Mega downpour. The heavens opened and everyone got a right good soaking. Still it cooled us all down.
Bumped into Barry, Gary was out due to injury. Luke Aston was there but I did'nt see him.
Both did alright. Well they beat me.
We were all given a commemorative T-shirt. Could have done with a towel. Not complaining.

Time:- 47:29

Result:- 335 out of 958 finishers.

2008 Darling Ton 10k Road Race Results

5th Race. The 2008 Morpeth 10k

This was another mid-week Race, and to be honest I think this will be my last. I think it lacks the atmosphere of most Sunday races. It was mostly teams out on their training run's. I still want to enjoy any run that I do whether it be in training or in race format, but I think I will cherry pick the rated one's in the future.I did collect a rather nice mug for my efforts. which, by the way were actually quite good according to the stats. Aycliffe still remains to be my Personal best time of 46:46. But I did manage a 47:20 which is not too shabby on a hilly race like the Morpeth 10k. My times were probably good because the pace of the race was quite fast. It was 2 undulating laps, mostly uphill for about 3/4 of the lap then was downhill the last quarter. It was not off road as I thought, but a tarmac slapper.
I think its definitely a "did it wont do it again" kinda Race.
Oh, andI must say a big thanks to Caroline Duffy from Elswick Harriers, who races with an MP3 player in her lug. She managed to step into my path about 10 yards to go, causing me to near break my neck in a stumble, oblivious to her surroundings and the fact that I pipped her to the post. She remains named and shamed.
Dangerous game , running!

Time :- 47:20
Result :- 182nd of 313 Finishers.
2008 Morpeth 10k Road Race

4th Race. The 2008 Tynedale 10k

This was my first time racing midweek.
Another strange experience.
Off to a bad start as my windscreen on the car picked up a chip on the way there.
I started this race way too far back. It was a narrow field and started downhill on a bend.
A really nice scenic race along the river bank and over the bridge's. Not quite fast and flat but more so than Aycliffe. I did enjoy this race. We had a pie and pea supper at the finish.
Times were not great. Quite hot and humid. We had a brief downpour just before the race.
Times not great 48:53
357th out of 633 finishers.
Paul Saager from Eden Runners came behind me again @ 370th.

2008 Final Result Tynedale 10k

Read this document on Scribd: final Result Tynedale 10k

3rd Race. The 2008 Newton Aycliffe 10k

Fathers Day

This was a bit of a strange one for me.
I am used to running off road so to be pounding the tarmac around Newton Aycliffe on a double circuit was really weird.
The thing was I managed to record a PB of 46:46. Dead Chuffed!
T-shirt and a decent pair of running socks plus crisps and energy tubes for finishing.
125th out of a field of 263.
Met up with Barry at the start and he introduced me to his mate Gary Whittaker. I also bumped into Luke Aston and his family.
Paul Saager from Eden Runners finished right behind me in 126th place.
Gary was 144th
Barry romped home 59th

2008 Newton Aycliffe 10k
Read this document on Scribd: final results-aycliffe10k

2nd Race. The 2008 Druridge Bay 10k

This was an absolutely cracking Race.
Sponsored by the British Heart Foundation.
We had the option of having a sports massage before and after the race, thank's to a bunch of trainees trying to get some practise in from the college. The scenery is astounding and the atmosphere was great.
Another race with the majority of it taking part on the beach. The tide was well out of course so the sand was wet and well compacted. I found it quite good to run on. There were a few small inclines but nothing dramatic. Goody bag to all finishers. T-shirt (BHF), mouse mat.
Finished 98 out of 401 in 49:48.
2008 Druridge Bay10k

1st ever Race. The Sunderland Pier to Pier 2008

Here's me, Race No 452, coming in 295th out of 889 finishers in my first ever competitive run. My time was 54:14. Race distance was billed as 7.5 Miles but a Garmin user said it was more like 7 Miles. Tip.If you fancy running this race, when the track splits into 3 options take the far right route. This was the first time I bumped into Barry Mahaffy. He gave me a rough Idea what to expect, as being a complete novice I hadn't a clue. He managed to come in 121st.

2008 Pier to Pier

Read this document on Scribd: final ResultsP2P