Weekly Update: I’m not blowing it for you…



So has anyone heard from the London Marathon organisers yet? I’m desperately hoping for good news and could barely wait to get home today, only to find my doormat bereft of any news. Sorry if you haven’t received good news and instead received the magazine of doom. We’ll be applying for club places as per usual, so you should have a chance to relive the ubiquitous disappointment all over again in December. Feel dejected? Don’t feel so sad, there’s some cracking results to share. If these don’t get your pecker up, well, I don’t know what will.



Does anyone remember Jane Hill and Michelle Dinsdale? They used to run with the club. We haven’t seen them for ages ever since they got this silly marathon running business in their heads and went off on their lonesome to train for the York Marathon. And, well, they’ll be pleased that they did and that all their hard work paid off. Jane (4:49:10) and Michelle (5:13:21) both set off with a sub-4:30 looking like a distinct possibility, but a marathon is a cruel and fickle mistress with a venomous sting in her tail, and the going got tough for the ladies as they battled for home in their first attempt at the marathon distance. They were joined in popping their marathon cherry by Marcos Montana (5:04:47) who wasn’t going to let the long course daunt him. Marathon veteran Michelle Smith (4:42:22) was on hand to lead the Nidd Valley Brigade through the City, out to Stamford Bridge, though Dunnington, round the villages and back to York University. Well done to you all, especially to you marathon newbies.


The Church of Nidd Valley (amen to that, I say) is nothing if not broad, and while we had a contingent out pounding the streets of York, Emma David was back in the Lake District to compete in the Lakes in a Day Race. You know the kind of thing, nothing too strenuous, only 50 miles and 14,000ft of climb. Emma (13:28:46) – and get this – managed to take fifth place out of the 68 female finishers. For some reason the website insists on differentiating the results based on gender, and I haven’t the time nor the inclination to count through them all, put them in order, disregard the many that didn’t finish just to furnish you with more irrelevant statistical context. You don’t need it. Is all you need to know is that Emma did incredibly well. But hey, you knew that anyway, right?


You know that moment when the dog brings you a stick or a half-chewed tennis ball, drops it at your feet and then looks up at you with the puppy dog eyes? You know what you’re expected to do, and no further explanation is necessary. Well that is pretty much what Dave Prince has just done with the results from the Withins Skyline. He just text me the link, nothing else, and clearly expects a write up. Well, so long as he doesn’t expect me to pick up his poop in a little plastic bag as well, then I’m happy to oblige. Tim Harvey (48:06) was first Nidd back off the hill, beating a very much on-form Fingers Harris (50:49) with a strong finish. I’m just gutted that I didn’t accept Fingers’ £20 wager that he could beat Tim. Carol Morgan (57:19) led the Nidd Valley Ladies back to the finish line, Fell Running Phil (1:04:16) was unable to wipe the smile off his face having been allowed up to play in the hills for two weeks in a row, and Dave Prince (1:06:04) was enjoying a return to full strength. Dave Seaman (1:10:09) and Catherine Barber (1:12:08) were just ahead of the ever-chatty Debbie Gibson (1:07:48) and Sarah Chalmers (1:32:21). Congratulations to you all.

Best photo of the year, I think.

Best photo of the year, I think.

There wasn’t much by way of parkrun tourism this week. Not that I’m complaining, it means I’ll have this bad boy dispatched this side of midnight. Anyway, starting with Fountains, we’ve got some great times from Tim Harvey (18:01) – clearly resting for Withins by taking it faster than I could ever do – and Andy Todd (18:54), with Matt Rickard (20:56) and Jamie Dilasser (21:56) not too far behind them.


Down in Harrogate, Warren Lowcock (17:34) found himself a new PB and second place overall, with Alex Patrickson (18:26) just pipping Martin Lofthouse (18:28) to the finish – such cruel fate! I’ve no idea what Matt Wilkinson (19:10) was so relaxed, and Dan Eagling (20:01) just missed out on the 20 minute cut off point. No worries, he’s been there, done it, and got that tee-shirt. Stop rambling and focus, Fugill. We don’t see much of Christine Holleran (23:40) but it is always nice when she turns up, and we’re always pleased to catch up with Mark Armstrong (23:48), Alison Iles (24:04), Sarah Hughan (24:10), Moira McTague (24:54) and Catherine Barber (24:56). The hugest of congratulations are also due to Tony LC (26:38), Hannah Peagram (26:48), Neil Wright (29:50) and Jeff Walker (32:26). As ever: well done all. Your club loves you.


You’ll have to blow your own trumpet. I’m not blowing it for you: chair@niddvalleyroadrunners.co.uk.


The Week Ahead

Yes, okay. I know it’s a pain in the arse when the weather turns and gets dark early as it does restrict the choice of routes somewhat. Nothing I can do about it, I’m afraid. Cheer up. It’ll be intervals soon.


Ah to hell with it, let’s throw caution to the athletic wind and run Pannal on Tuesday. From the club house, it is round the edge of the Stray to Oatlands Drive and down Hookstone Chase to Leeds Road Crossroads. If you don’t fancy Pannal (understandable if you don’t, tbh), then you can head back down Leeds Road or out towards Rossett School and back in. If you do Pannal, it’s down Leeds Road to the village before you start the pull up Church Lane and onto the bottom of Green Lane. See you at the Hockey Club for 7pm.


On Thursday, we’ll run the Cold Bath Road run. Meeting at the Hockey Club for 7pm, it is out on Skipton Road and down to Kings Road. Once you’re down into town, head past the Council Offices and the Crown Hotel before the climb up Cold Bath Road. After that, you can turn for home, or push out down Pannal Ash Road and Leadhall Lane. Extend or cut short as you feel. I don’t mind. But do turn up, it’ll do you good. You can even have a pint upstairs in the bar afterwards.


On Saturday, we’re hosting Harrogate parkrun. Thanks to all who have volunteered to help out, and I’m dead excited to have all pacing positions between 20 and 35 minutes all filled and ready to go. I’ve attached our marshal plan for this here, so if you don’t know what you are doing, then this is where you need to be.


We’ve got the Bridlington Half Marathon on Sunday. There’s still space to enter the race (you do that here: http://www.bridlingtonrr.co.uk/page16.html) and I’ve still got a couple of seats left on the minibus. If you want a seat on that, then let me know. If you are coming on the Nidd Valley Express, we are leaving from the Hockey Club at 6.45am sharp (yeah, I know) as this gives us time to get to Brid, get parked up, kitted up and warmed up. We’re leaving at 3pm in the afternoon, so this gives us time for fish and chips and for Alex and Martin to try their luck on the slot machines. I’ll send out a confirmation to people nearer towards the end of the week.


And last, but not least, good luck to all of you racing in the British Fell Championships in Loch Lomond at the weekend. You’ll have a blast, I’m sure. I think. I hope. Maybe.


Caption Competition

Well done, Anne-Marie. A bottle of the finest red wine from the cellars here at Nidd Valley House will be specially selected for you. For those that wanted to know Anne-Marie’s winning one liner…

“When I said that that was better than a poke in the eye with a sharp stick, it was metaphorical, I didn’t mean you to test it out”


Guy Fawkes 10: 6 November 2016

I appreciate this is becoming a bore for you each week. You know the deal: check it and confirm it. If you can’t do it, I need to know ASAP, but I also need to do if you can. I’ll start ringing round and badgering you all in person next week, so save yourself the hassle (it’s like the TV licence people, isn’t it?). Marshal plan attached here.


Thanks to all of you who are getting involved. We couldn’t do it without you. I’d give you a big hug but I’m not a huge fan of touching people, especially strangers.


As an aside, we’re looking for someone (or some people) to get involved with helping to run this race next year. I’ll be honest, it doesn’t run itself, and there is a bit of work behind the scenes, but we really need some more to get involved. You can speak with me if you want rambling delusions of power and fame (chair@niddvalleyroadrunners.co.uk). If you want sensible answers, ask Matt (guyfawkes@niddvalleyroadrunners.co.uk).


Word to the Wise

So we met for drinks last Monday for Bob and Annie, and Terry Massey was holding forth at the bar, complementing Fingers Harris on his recent running achievements, unwittingly becoming one of Nidd Valley’s wise men in the process:

“You’re running well, Fingers, what are you doing? You stopped drinking? You taking drugs? You joined a proper running club?”


Fair point.


I’m outta here!


Sam x

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