Brass Monkey Half Marathon Sun 15th Jan 2017

So signing up for this race seemed like a good idea at the time, I had been told it was a fast and flat course and definitely had PB potential written all over it, that was until I realised that the middle of January isn’t exactly when you were at your peak for running a half marathon!  Despite this the fact that it was sold out within 30 minutes of going on sale did reassure us that it was a race worth doing!

Race day came around very quick, and true to its name it was certainly “brass” the morning of the race, however not quite the minus 2 degrees it was the previous year as we seemed to be reminded on several occasions.  Race HQ was at York racecourse, with baggage drop, toilet facilities and any last minute drinks and snacks available – all very organised.  We of course arrived with plenty of time in hand and strolled to the start line totally relaxed, and we of coursed definitely did not have a “lovers tiff” because we were so organised, as everyone knows that I don’t like to be organised at all and I am rather laid back when it comes to these things!!!

When we eventually wished each other luck and departed for our individual pens I was amazed at the variety of club vests on show, coming from all over the UK, it was also great to see the North East represented by so many clubs and familiar faces.

Finally we were underway and after the first km we hit the on and only bridge on the whole course, “I must remember that I have to tackle that on the way back” I thought to myself, as well as “Miv told me it was flat!!!”.  The course itself was through some nice little villages and then into the countryside before looping back to York Racecourse.  I little boring in places but bizarrely flat, perfectly flat in fact and Miv was right – it certainly did have PB potential written all over it.  Having got past the half way point pretty comfortably and then hitting 10 miles I realised I was starting to get tired, I had 21 minutes to do 5km, which would bring me under 1:27, something I hadn’t even dreamed of before the race let alone during it!  I of course totally forgot that I had to go back over the bridge, which hurt but it is supposed to right?  I came across the finish line and couldn’t believe my time, and once I had got my breath (and lungs) back, it started to sink in.  Looking at the race picture of me below I am starting to become alarmed at how many times I get pictured looking at my watch, do I just run in that position constantly?

The highlight of the race was to come – having ran 6 half marathons last year, the year after in which she ran her first ever half marathon, Helen crossed the line of her first half marathon of 2017 in 1:59, her first ever sub 2 hour half marathon, something which I know she has been determined to achieve for so long.

So was the Brass Monkey Half marathon worth setting your alarm for 5:50am on a random Sunday morning just to get in?  Of course it was – as Miv said “Fast and flat with PB potential!!

Christmas 5km Handicap Race – Wed 21st Dec 19:00hrs

A quiet evening on the streets of Darras Hall, well it would have been last night if it wasn’t for a large gaggle of Pont Runners gathered at the end of Runnymede Road awaiting their start times for the annual handicap race.

Although only a 5km, it’s a challenge for all the runners, the first away have to try and stay ahead and the last away are chasing for the whole race….. Watching the “strava flyby” for the event just shows how very bunched it becomes when you handicap everyones time.

Many of the normal “A” group runners headed up Darras Road for a warm-up run, and were surprised when they turned round to head back to the start that Mr O’Neil continued to run on.  He had a plan, to arrive just in time for his start time, which he missed by a few seconds.  Everyone else was on the start line in time and ready to go. The Elf’s took various items of clothing from the competitors and once everyone was gone the elf’s and timers headed over to the finish line on Darras Road.

Now it quickly became apparent that the timers were going to have a hectic few minutes as if things went to plan all the runners would arrive together.  When the runners started to arrive there was a very busy 3 minutes or so taking times. Given that the handicaps set people over almost 18 minutes it worked well to provide an race where everyone had an opportunity to win.

Well done to evreryone who took part, and a big thankyou from everybody to Matty for organising a great club event. Have a great christmas and new year and keep an eye on the facebook page for any updates on run sessions over the christmas period. Some of our normal sessions fall on bank holidays so won’t be taking place.

 

The Yorkshire Coast 10km Sunday 30th Oct 2016

Ponteland Runners, or runner, as it was just Tim Allsop on his own, were on tour in Yorkshire for the 10km costal run. Tim did the club proud finishing 19th overall and won the V45 category in a field of over 1600. His time a very impressive 37.28. This is the sort of results we are really keen to shout about and it’s great to hear about Tim’s success.

Well done Tim!!. Results can be found here.

Wrekenton Cross Country – Race Report

Ah yes, Cross Country has returned.

Freezing cold temperatures and mud up to your waist but hang on a minute, what was that big yellow thing in the sky? And what was that strange substance called “dry ground”? Also new for this season are chip timings in your race number – making it extra important that you don’t lose it/wash it during the season.

Wrekenton was the venue for the first race of the 2016/17 season and despite clashing with a number of other races this weekend, it was a very good turn out from the club with 10 ladies and 13 men taking part. Both teams are already looking capable of achieving promotion this year with hopefully some even stronger performances to follow over the coming few races.

Special shout outs to all the first timers – Abby (promotion to the medium pack in your first race, great stuff), Elaine, Sarah, Claire, Caroline, Tim (1st time for us anyway), Alex and Duncan – hope I haven’t missed anyone.

Special mentions also to Martin Hallissey on a rapid return to the fast pack (he’s got potential that bloke – you heard it here first!) and Matty Bell for his incredible powers of decisiveness over what shoes to wear. Thanks too to all the kids and other club members that came along to cheer us on.

After race cakes and drinks were as splendid as ever – and it’s only 7 days until we get to do it all over again at Druridge Bay when hopefully lots more team members can also be there. Photos of “aeroplanes” etc. all available to view on Facebook.

Cold and muddy? Not a chance.