Sun 8 Sept 2019, Edge Hill, Ormskirk
This year the relays were organised by Merseyside region with three other regions, Greater Manchester, Cheshire and Lancashire in competition. This year several Cumbrian clubs were also included, this all creating better competition in the region. They are a great way to test an individual’s current shape and also the club’s ability and readiness to put forward teams for the Northern and National Road Relays as well as preparation for the coming cross country season.
All age groups are covered from U11s to seniors, male and female, and medals are presented to the fastest three teams in each race category as well area medals for the fastest three teams in each of the areas.
Races started at 10.30 with U11 boys and girls, three runners each completing a 1.5km leg, starting and finishing on the track where the changeovers took place. U13s, U15s and U17 girls each ran a 2.8km leg, one large lap, whereas senior women, U17 men and senior men ran 5km with the senior men having four in their teams.
The weather was fine for running and spectating and the facilities coped well with the event. With club members and families supporting the runners on each leg it was a busy time all round the course except for the furthest part away from the track area. As runners came back from here they had a hill with a 90 and 180 degree turn on it but it was runnable and had plenty of support as it was about half a mile left to run, slightly downhill to the finish on the track.
We only had senior teams in the event, one parent asking why no juniors??? and could they enter a team if three youngsters wanted to run. I’m sure the club would support that, it doesn’t have to be a coach that enters the team although that is the usual path.
The ladies were first off, fielding four teams and three reserves. On the first leg were Katey Foster, Laura Conn, Julie Tyrer and Alex Proffitt. They all gave a good account of themselves with Katey coming 20th overall in her race well supported by mum, dad and baby Alexander.
Our second leg runners were Emma Hargreaves, Vicki Sherrington, Shelley Audis-Riddell and in her second 5k race ever, Hollie Suffolk. Once again giving everything to help their teammates. And finally the third leg runners Vikki Duckett, Emma Essex Crosby, Sue Ashcroft and Sue Wickham all finished after putting in great efforts, this was rewarded by slices of a huge chocolate cake. What you ladies do for chocolate!
When the results had been sorted the ladies ‘A’ team had come third in Lancashire and received bronze medals, well done Katie, Emma and Vikki and well done the other ladies, great cameraderie and support.
With the men, two teams ran though three were entered and it was only by very last minute call up that the ‘B’ team competed, two ancients being pulled from the cupboard, dusted down and assisted to the track to take part. Simon Collins and Paul Younger were on the first leg, Paul aquitting himself well on his first relay. Next Darren Kinder and Andy Lea put in good steady runs and these were followed by Alex Venables and Alan Littler each striving to maintain position and finally Simon Robinson and Alan Appleby completed the race.