News reports - February 2018

24th / 25th February 2018: Stephanie, Luke and Ben tested at England Indoor Champs

(Updated) As far as I can see, Stephanie Robertson, Luke Suarez and Ben Apps were the only Southport Waterloo representatives at the EIS in Sheffield over the weekend for the England National age group Indoor Championships. Stephanie isn't in the early published results but ran a PB 9.74 in the 60m hurdles, adjusting well to the use of blocks and the different spacing for Under 17 Women.

Ben competed in the triple jump and leapt a best of 13m 15. Luke ran in the 60m, recording a PB time of 7.74, 3 tenths faster than he ran last December at Sportcity. Competing at this level can only do the trio good and give encouragement for the coming outdoor season.

Luke's 60m was on Saturday leaving him free to compete in the long jump at Sportcity on the Sunday where he recorded another PB; 5m 80. Ethan Harrison was also at Sportcity, running a best of 7.95 for 60m and 25.48 for 200m, both Season's Best knocking hundredths off his earlier Sportcity times.

24th February 2018: English National XC champs at Parliament Hill
This year's ECCA Saucony English National Championships returned to Parliament Hill in London. The massive field of over 2300 Senior Men included two Southport Waterloo runners. Andrew Kershaw was an impressive 194th in 45:13 for the 12 km course and Alex Waddelove completed in 52:54. Apologies if I've missed anyone.
24th February 2018: British Masters 3rd place for Rob Johnson

The British Masters' 10 Mile Road championships were held on Saturday within the Rhyl 10 Mile race. Rob Johnson finished 65th overall in 67:59 (67:55 chip time) and took 3rd MV60 spot.

I think this is Rob's first Masters podium finish and gives him his first listing on the club's Honours Board. Well done Rob!

Full results

Meanwhile David Wright and Graham Liu were running the Wrexham Village Bakery Half Marathon on Sunday running 1: 29:51 and 1:41:56 (gun times). Both results are significant PBs!

17th February 2018: Emily Dean wins U11 cross country at Rylands Park

The penultimate round of the Mid Lancs Cross Country League was held in Lancaster's Rylands Park on Saturday. Rylands is small and compact which requires laps to give the distance so also gives good opportunities for spectators to watch the runners. Mostly flat grassed parkland, i could imagine this to be a fast course in the right conditions but with recent rains it had little chance to dry out and was fairly sticky and slippery underfoot and not ideal for running on, particularly as the races progressed. Weather-wise, conditions were better with just one rain shower early afternoon.

Numbers were a little down. This is expected in February and March as a number of the end-of-season individual and team winners are already decided on a best 4 from 6 basis.

First off were the Under 11 Girls and Emily Dean went straight to the front. She led for much of the race and showed an intelligent running to come from second to win just before the finish line. She ran 7:35 for her 2 km medium lap - one second ahead of the 2nd placed guest runner. Apphia Keenan ran 8:39, 29th of the 64 finishers, and Charlotte Hughes finished in 9:09. Good to see a team finish for the girls. A tallented runner, Emily is currently 3rd placed in the League overall.

We had no Under 11 Boys. However, Sammy Pickerill is already assured an individual League win.

Five of our girls ran in the Under 13 Girls' race. Grace Barr was first home, 13th of the 62 finishers in 9:20 for her 2.4 km long lap. Amber Hughes was only just behind, 17th in 9:29, with Libby Simpson running 10:29, Katie Piercy 10:42 and Millie Ireland 11:33. Grace, Amber and Libby finished 7th team.

Michael Henderson and James Pike were our representatives in the Under 13 Boys' race. Michael was 7th of 60 finishers in 11:54 for his 3.4 km 2 short lap course. James finished in 13:54.

In the Under 15 Girls' race Lilly-Ann Grayson had a good finish in 4th place of 28 girls in 12:49 for her 3.4 km 2 lap course. There was only 7 secs between 2nd, 3rd and 4th so a very close race. Freya Walsh also ran but was unwell and didn't finish. Overall, Olivia Logan looks good to win the League but needs to run at Ulverston. If she does, it could also mean team medals for the girls.

Lewis McMahon ran in the Under 15 Boys' race. He completed the 2 medium lap, 4 km course in 18:01.

And Jessica Dean was 6th in the Under 17 Women's race, running 16:24 for her 4 kms.

A good turn-out of our Senior Women was led home by Nicola Simpson, finishing 24th of 129 in 27:20 for the 3-lap 6 km course. Michelle Spencer was next, 32nd in 28:02, and Carole James, 61st in 30:48, was the final team counter, 9th overall. Helen Lavelle finished in 31:50, Helen Lodge in 33:07, and Gina Bellhouse in 35:00. Michelle, Carole and Helen were 9th L35 team, and Carole, Helen and Gina 7th L45 team. The Senior Women are currently lying 2nd in Division 2 overall so could be promoted next season!. And Sue Stewart is 2nd LV65 overall.

Running with the women over the 6 kms, the MV70s included a rare race from Steve James who was 5th in 34:17.

Our Senior Men won the team race! They were led home by Ben Johnson who finished an excellent 5th in 33:15 for 4-lap 9.6 kms. David Hamilton finished 17th overall but 1st MV50 in 36:02, Paul Warrington was next, 34th in 38:23, Rob McGrath, 35th in 38:27, John Sprackland, 48th in 39:20, and the final team counter was Peter Roome, 51st in 39:43. Other finishers were Gareth Simpson, 40:03, Neil Adshead, 41:52, Rob Johnson, 42:38, Carl McMahon, 43:58, Mike Walker, 44:58, Brian Davey, 46:24, Clive James 49:24, Matt Nelson, 49:38, and Ian Pike, 56:53.

David, Paul, Rob and John won the MV40 team event, David Rob and John won the MV50 team event and Rob, Mike and Brian were the winning MV60 team.

In the League overall so far: David Hamilton is currently 3rd MV49, David Hamilton and Rob McGrath are 1st and 2nd MV50 - but Rob needs to run Ulverston, and Rob Johnson is 2nd MV60. In the team standings, our Senior Men are 3rd in Division 1, our 'B' team is 3rd in Division 4, we are 2nd in MV40 Div'n 1 and leading in MV50 and MV60. Well done the vets!

Thanks to our team managers: Barrie Hughes and Ian Pike for the juniors, Carole James for the Women and Clive James for the Men.

Next and final fixture is a new venue, in Ulverston on Saturday 3rd March.

Results | Indvidual Standings | Team Standings


17th February 2018: Tough going at Parbold Hill

The 48th Parbold Hill Race took place on Saturday 17th February 2018 with perfect weather conditions overhead for the 442 runners taking part. Nine SWAC members ran in the race probably due to an unfortunate fixture clash with the Mid Lancs Cross Country in Lancaster. Recent high rainfall meant that much of the 6.7 mile course was extremely challenging, particularly the first down hill section of the race where the mud was shin deep in places, just before the climb back up and over Parbold Hill. Runners encountered difficult muddy sections in the wooded areas before heading back down the hill across saturated grass fields to the finish at Richard Durning's Primary School. 

First in was Mathew Crehan from St. Helens and Sutton in 41:59. First lady in was Katie Walshaw from Ribble Valley Harriers in 46:58

Our runners were Ray Handley in 52:45, Neil Silcock in 1:03, Graham Liu in 1:06, Billy Hargreaves in 1:15, Sue Stewart in 1:16, Alan Grey in 1:19, Catherine McElhinney in 1:31, Dennis Fenna in 1:36 & Joanne Fenna in 1:36. 

Well done to Billy and Sue who were first in their vet classes. Hopefully for the 49th Parbold Hill Race conditions will be just as good. 

11th February 2018: Fell Grand Prix races for 2018 announced

Listed below are the races for the 2018 series. As always there are some old favourites and some new, giving the opportunity to visit different locations. This year a number of the races have junior races included and should there be sufficient interest from junior runners a junior championship will be included in the series.

As in previous years the Championship will be decided on the best four races from the series.

Sat 7th April   -  Pendle, 2.00pm                  AS 7.3km/457m

                          Barley Village Hall, Barley nr. Burnley

                          (Possible Merseyside Fell Champs - TBC)

Tues 8th May   - Mearley Clough, 7.15pm     AS 5.6Km/380m

                          Calf’s Head, Worston nr Clitheroe.

Sat 26th May  -  Hutton Roof, 2.30pm            BM 11.3km/397m

                          Hutton Roof Village Hall – Nr Kirkby Lonsdale.

Sat 9th June  -   Weets, 11.00am                AS 8.8km/550m

                        Letcliffe Park, Barnodlswick

Thurs 5th July. - Tockholes, 7.15pm               BS 9.3km/335m

                          Rock Public house, Tockholes.

Wed 25th July. - Harrock Hill, 7.30pm             BS 8.4km/275m

                          Farmers Arms, Bispham Green Nr Parbold.

Wed 8th Aug. -   Pilgrims Cross, 7.15pm       BM 9.7km/336m

                          Sunnybank Social Club, Helmshore.

Mon 27th Aug.  –Cilcain Show, 1.00pm         AS 7.4km/392mm

                          St. Mary’s church, Cilcain.

Junior races are included at Pendle, Hutton Roof, Weets and Cilcain Show. A junior championship will be decided from the best three races from four.

All Grand Prix are listed on the RoadRunning page.

11th February 2018: James Tartt 3rd in L&D XC Champs

The Liverpool & District Cross Country Union's annual championships were held at Clarke Gardens on Sunday. Strong winds, sunny spells and intense hail provided the weather backdrop and the ground away from the start field was wet and muddy. This year, the championships introduced a women's team award and this did wonders for the number of women participating. About 25% of the entries were women.

About 154 finished the 3-lap course for just under 6 miles. Despite Matt Crehan of St Helens setting a blistering pace over the first lap the overall winner was Liverpool Harrier Richard Burney, with Matt 2nd and an increasingly fit James Tartt 3rd. St Helens Sutton did remarkably well to take the team title ahead of Liverpool Harriers and Penny Lane Striders in 3rd. In the Women's race, Kirsty Longley from Liverpool Pembroke & Sefton was the standout winner. St Helens Sutton's Amy Corfield was 2nd and Susan Furie of Chester Tri was 3rd. Wallasey won the Women's team event with Chester Tri 2nd and Skem Boundary 3rd.

With fixtures clashing with the Mid Lancs League, Southport Waterloo didn't feature in the L&D standings this season but 10 of our Senior Men took part in Sunday's championships. James Tartt was 3rd in 35:35 for the c 10K with David Hamilton our 2nd counter16th in 38:52 and Steve Wilkinson, 30th in 40:57. John Sprackland was 4th counter, 36th in 41:46, Peter Roome, 46th in 42:49, and Peter Gale anchored the team with a 53rd place finish in 5412. We will need to await publication of the official results to see where the team finished but perhaps 4th or 5th.

Richard Talbot completed the course in 44:20, Graham Liu in 49:46, Neil Silcock in 49:57 and Matt Nelson in 52:51.

Full results will appear in the L&D web site

8th February 2018: Summer athletics - including a new league for U17/U20 athletes

With the winter indoor, sportshall and cross country season in full swing and returning some great results, sunshine and outdoor athletics still seem a long way away.  But it all kicks off with the Blackpool Winter Warmer fixture on the 17th March, (though sunshine can't be guaranteed at this very early meeting)

The club has continued its affiliation with the Mid Lancs League, Northern League and Youth Development League.  Added to this are County, Northern and National Championships, combined event meetings and many open meetings with the best towards the seasons end, our own meeting held 1st September.  All can be found on the club fixtures page.  

The Mid Lancs League, 6 fixtures, is available to all club members U13 upwards. A great opportunity to prove and improve yourself against some very talented competition whilst being very relaxed in atmosphere.  

The Northern League, 4 fixtures, is for U17 and older and is a selected team for each fixture. Last year we did very well maintaining our place in Division 3. This year our objective is promotion.

The Youth Development League Lower, 4 fixtures, U13 & U15 is a selected team that had tremendous success last year. We look forward to seeing this squad perform again this summer with some new faces. Team Manager, Graham Boreham, did a fantastic job in 2017 and continues in this role this year. 

And introducing the Youth Development League Upper; 3 fixtures for U17 & U20.  This summer, Southport Waterloo will return to this competition after a considerable absence.  We have decided to enter this league to give our growing squad of U17 and U20 athletes, the opportunity to compete against their peers.  It is expected that there may initially be some gaps in our squad so we will be looking to fill these with new members (watch out for a recruitment drive) and some other faces who are already looking forward to representing Southport Waterloo.

Any questions about competing at any point of the season, please speak to Team Managers Graham Boreham, Lee Coupland, Liam Harris or Barrie Hughes who will be only too happy to share plans, ideas, fixtures and will be only too happy to cheer along anybody wearing blue and yellow all season.  You can get lots of advice also from club coaches.  

Finally, it is important to acknowledge the club's officials for their support throughout the athletic season. Without these dedicated people there would be no athletics.  So, if you find yourself regularly stood watching our athletes, why not get involved in officiating?  Again, speak to any club representative.

4th February 2018: Masters success for Ian Fitzpatrick

Veteran athlete Ian Fitzpatrick travelled to Glasgow for the Scottish Masters Indoor Championships on the 4th February, and returned with 2 medals.  

Competing for the first time in the V55 category, Ian was in action at the Emirates Arena in both 400m and 800m.  In the 400m Ian ran 61.97s and was just pipped into silver medal position by Robert Grew from Exeter.  With no time to really get his breath back Ian was back on the start line 25 minutes later for the 800m.  Here he won a bronze medal in a time of 2:28.84.

Congratulations to Ian and also to Ian's fiancé and former club member Clare Constable who won her 800m race.

4th February 2018: An impressive 7 medals won at Northern U13/U15 Indoor Champs

Amazing! Excellent! First-rate! Magnificent! Marvelous! Outstanding! Superb! And many other superlatives spring to mind. At Sunday's very well supported Northern Athletics Under 13 and Under 15 Championships, 8 Southport Waterloo juniors attended. I'm pretty sure that's a record! And they won 7 Northern medals. I am sure that's a record! And Amber Hughes, Sierra Jalloh and Sam Coupland have their achievements recorded for posterity in the club's Honours Board.

Taking the girls first, Under 13 Lauren Byrne ran a PB 32.37 in her heat of the 200m. Unfortunately, she then hurt her knee in warm up, didn't clear a height in the high jump and had to pull out of the 60m. She would have hoped for a better championships but she took a PB and will bounce back!

Under 15 Katie Piercy also ran in a 200m and dropped her PB below 30 with a 29.92 run. She also took part in the shot put with a best of 8m 27.

Sierra Jalloh has been a simmering sprint talent since she joined us in 2016. In the 60m she was 2nd in her heat in 8.66, 2nd in her semi in 8.56 and 3rd in the final in 8.57. Some great times and gave Sierra a Northern bronze. She wasn't finished, however. Over 200m, she won her heat in 28.54, was 2nd in the semi in a PB 27.89 and 3rd in the final in 28.01. Two Northern bronze medals in her first Northern indoor championships. Excellent performances!

Then we come to Under 13 Amber Hughes. Amber competed in these championships in 2017 but, despite some great performances, she was outside the medals. One year on and Amber left with three Northern gold medals! She won the high jump with 1m 38 and won the shot competition with 9m 45 but it was her 200m which is much more an arena event and, for indoors athletics, we are fortunate to have a magnificent arena at the EIS. All Amber's 200m times were better than her previous PB! In the first round, she won in 27.97, in the semi she ran 27.28 and she won the final in 27.33. Its tough to have to get through 3 rounds of a track event, particularly in combination with two field events, so Amber has done extraordinarily well; and no doubt drawing on her combined event experience.

It is also important to note that two Southport Waterloo runners contested the Under 13 Girls' 200m final. Amber set the pace from the gun but Sierra was chasing and both girls controlled for much of the race. it was only in the final stages that another girl came through to split the two Southport Waterloo runners. A great race for club spectators and another first!

Under 13 Boy Adam Byrne competed in three events and took advantage of the higher level of competition to push himself to a PB in all three. In the long jump he had a best of 3m 59. Over 60m he ran 9.79 and over 200m he ran 33.16.

Under 13 Jack Clark ran 8.81 in his heat of the 60m to qualify for the final where he ran 8.93. He went one better in the 200m. In his heat he won in a PB 28.04, in the semi he was 2nd in 28.26 and he finished 4th in the final in 29.38.

Under 15 Joshua Stammers achieved a PB in the long jump with a best of 5m 06. In the 60m he ran 8.31 and in his heat of the 200m he ran 27.17.

And Under 15 Sam Coupland was our final medallist. Sam was 2nd in the high jump with a 1m 60 clearance and he was 3rd in the pole vault, equalling his previous best clearance of 2m 50 . His third event was the 60m hurdles. Here he ran a PB 10.17 for the indoor 60m distance to qualify for the final where he finished in 10.22.

All the athletes can be proud of their achievements in Sheffield, leaving with a medal or not. They represent a strong squad of junior athletes that the club, too, can be proud of!

Full results


Footnote 1. Whilst we focus on the achievements of the athletes, we should also recognise the contribution made by our coaches, particularly those working on young athlete development over a range of events. Sunday's achievements show that Southport Waterloo is punching above its weight in Northern competition and promises a good outdoor T&F season in the Youth Development League.

Footnote 2. Prior to Sunday, the Championship Best Performance (CBP) of 27.41 for Under 13 Boys' 200m was held by Southport Waterloo's Luke Suarez. That gave him one of the three Northern medals he won in 2015. But nothing lasts for ever and James Ince from Preston Harriers is the new holder, winning on Sunday in 26.72.

Footnote 3. There was also an Open indoor meeting at Sportcity on Sunday. Here, Harry Flanagan won his 60m race in 7.39 - a new Under 20 club record! , Chris Burgess ran 7.93, Ethan Harrison a PB .7.97 and Amy Bloxsome 9.36. Chris also ran a 200m, in 25.54..

4th February 2018: 2018 SWAC road Grand Prix starts with the Mad Dog 10K

The popular Mad Dog 10k in Southport attracted 42 Southport Waterloo runners on Sunday amongst the 2663 finishers. It was the first race in the club's 2018 road Grand Prix season so a great start with so many taking part on a crisp winter's morning, a couple more than last year. The race itself was won by Red Rose Runner Simon Croft in 33:43. Amanda Crook was the first female finisher in 35:06. All times given are chip times. .

Southport Waterloo's men were led home by Neil Cosgrove, 4th overall in 35:39 with Rob McGrath not far behind, 1st M50 in 36:06. Francois Rafferty was next in 35:58, then Boyd Park 3rd M50 in 39:37, Al Grant in 40:05, Paul Warrington in 41:55 and James Brooker in 42:13. Others were Mike Walker, 1st M60 in 42:16, Jeffrey Caunce in 42:16, Keith Swift in 42:18, Carl Pedder in 43:36, Andrew Hudson in 44:27, Keith Lunt in 44:59 as a guide runner, Joel Green in 46:02, Tony Bond in 47:39, Stephen Flanagan, in 48:00, Paul Dewhurst in 48:31, Charles Warrington in 50:28, Hugo Kearsey in 55:08, Gavin Baron in 58:00, Mike Leatherbarrow in 58:27 and Paul Seton in 66:57.

First Southport Waterloo woman home, and female race winner, was Amanda Crook in 35:06.Tracey Allan was 3rd F35, 7th female finisher, in 41:30, and Catherine Fearnley was our 3rd finisher in 44:59.Tracey Barlow was next finishing in 46:57, 7th F45, then Sarah Lunt 49:14, Vicki Hudson, 49:52, Susan Cooper, 5th F55 in 51:21, and Sue Stewart, 1st F65 in 52:26. Others were Talitha Shandley (52:54), Gina Bellhouse (53:12), Catherine McElhinney (56:24), Jane Blacklin (56:28), Jodie Rimmer (57:22), Katy Coupland (57:45), Sarah Pickerill (58:11), Heather Goadsby (61:30), Emma Hopwood (61:53), Kellea Turner (66:57), Louise Wareing (67:38) and Gill Gillison (67:53).

Other races in the 2018 Grand Prix can be seen here.

Full results

3rd February 2018: M'side Schools hold their XC Champs

A new venue was found for this year's Merseyside County Schools Cross Country Championships; within Liverpool's Calderstones Park. It was a fairly compact, flat course around the lake and surrounding parkland but recent rain forced course builders to divert around some of the worst muddy areas.

In addition to individual and team awards, the first 4 finishers in the Junior, Inter and Senior age groups would win automatic selection to the Merseyside Schools team at the English Schools Cross Country Champs at Temple Newsom Park in Leeds on Saturday 17th March. Runners would be selected for the remaining 4 places based on recent performances, eg at the County Champs. For the Year 7s, the first 15 boys and girls would be selected for the annual Inter County match against Cheshire at Ellesmere Port on 19th March.

The Schools age groups for cross country are different to club competition in that, for the schools, it is the same as the 2018 T&F season rather than the 2017 T&F season. So some of our runners were moving up an age group.

As far as I can tell from the latest results, Southport Waterloo runners fared as follows. The distances given are my guesses as they are not recorded on either the pre-race information or the results.

Year 7 Girls. Running for Meols High, Libby Simpson was 9th of the 34 runners completing the approx 2 km course in 9:06. Sefton took the team bronze medals and Libby was 2nd counter for the Sefton team.

Year 7 Boys. I think these boys ran about 3 kms. There were two Southport Waterloo runners. Ralph Collis, Range High, was 13th in 9:52 and Paul Murphy-Worrell, Formby High, was 22nd in 11.07. Ralph was 4th counter for the Sefton took that took the bronze medals.

Junior (Yr 8/9) Girls. Olivia Logan, Greenbank High, had to settle for 3rd place here, in 9:11 for 3 kms. Alex Murphy-Worrell, Formby High, was 22nd in 10:54 and Annabel Lockie, Range High, was 25th in 11:02. Olivia took the individual 3rd place award and a bronze team medal.

Junior (Yr 8/9) Boys. Michael Henderson, Formby High, was in good form here finishing 5th in 10:57 for his 3.5 kms. Lewis McMahon, Chesterfield High, was 27th in 12:44. Once again, Sefton took the 3rd placed team award with Michael their first counter.

Inter (Yr 10/11) Girls. Here we had Lilly Ann Grayson, Formby High, Jessica Dean, Greenbank High, and Freya Walsh, Range High, running for Sefton. The Inter and Senior Girls ran together as a combined team and are not separated in the results but I believe Lilly-Ann was 9th Inter Girl in 12.12 for the 3.5 kms. Jessica was 12th in 12:30 and Freya 15th in 12:55. Yet again, Sefton took the 3rd place team award and, as their 1st, 2nd and 4th counters all the girls would have received bronze team medals.

Overall, it looks like Libby Simpson and Ralph Collis will be part of the Merseyside Year 7 team against Cheshire on 19th March; and Olivia Logan, Michael Henderson and Lilly-Ann Grayson are or will be select to represent Merseyside at the English Schools Championships on 17th March. Others may have been selected as well based on other cross country performances this season.

I attach a copy of the results Excel file for anyone who wishes a closer look.