13th January – Alex’s Newspaper Report

The Wesham ladies set off on the Lancashire Cross Country on Saturday.

January will be a busy month for cross country running and the stakes increase as the focus moves on to the county, regional and national championships over the next three months.

January traditionally kicks off with the County Championships and the Lancahire Cross Country Championships took place again in its regular venue in Witton Park in Blackburn. Wesham had a Senior Women’s and men’s team and were successful with wining several county medals. In the Senior Women’s 3-lap 6.7km course, incorporating this year for the first time the Over-70 Men, Sarah Sherratt finished 50th in a time of 35:04, placing 3rd W50 and claiming a Lancashire bronze medal. Lisa Minns ran strongly for 58th place in 37:55, finishing 3rd W55 also winning a county bronze medal. Agness Woods just missed out on a county medal coming in 4th W55 close behind Lisa in 59th place in a time of 38:05. Alona Versinina was 62nd in 39:22, placing 7th W35. The Wesham team placed 7th and the Ladies Veterans were 8th team. In the incorporated Over-70s Men’s race John Coller was 2nd M70 in 34:42 for a Lancashire Silver medal. The Senior Men’s race took in 4 laps of the famous Blackburn course with its climb up the “saucer” for a 9.8km distance. Adam Wilding was the leading Wesham runner, and he finished 45th in 37:34. Jamie Houghton had a great cross country debut to finish 73rd with his time 40:53. Chris Haines placed 94th in 43:57 with Steve Myerscough 109th in 46:33 placing 10th M50. Nigel Shepherd gave a great result to win the M65 Bronze medal coming in 119th in 49:14 for 3rd M65. Martin Bates finished 133rd in 54:46 placing 7th M65. The Wesham Senior Men’s team were 9th with the Men’s veterans one short of a full team.

On Sunday the Central Lancs Half Marathon took place from Lea Town on its course through the country lanes of Catforth and Inskip. Jonny Allsop finished 126th with a big new personal best performance of 1:42:17. Andrew Wilkinson placed 250th with his time of 1:58:19 coming in 18th M55. Conditions were good for running with a bright still day.

There were 21 Wesham members running a parkrun on Saturday morning with 14 runners at Lytham Hall. David Taylor ran the 9th fastest time of the morning with 20:48 for an M35 age graded performance of 64.18%. Carl Groome was 10th fastest with 20:57 for an M55 age grade of 73.35%. Ian Nichols Hogg clocked 23:29 for 55.36% with Jonathan Lawson recording 23:52 for an M55 graded 64.94% and Ryan Azzopardi 25:38 with M40 54.49%. Bev Wilding timed in at 25:42 for a W60 76.59%; Alona Versinina returned 28:01 for W35 53.54%; and Andy Moore ran 28:27 for an M60 grade 57.35%. Liz Sharrocks recorded 31:26 for W60 63.52%; Julie Rooney ran 40:09 and W45 41.26%; Adam Wilding was saving himself for the afternoon’s cross country with a warmup of 40:09 for an age grade of 32.38%. Michelle Pitt posted 40:36 with a W40 38.46%; Sue Rigby ran 41:02 for W50 40.86%; and Tony Sharrocks clocked 42:17 for M60 38.27%. In Blackpool’s run in Stanley Park Lee Barlow ran 21:56 for an M50 68.31%; Elliot Costello came in at 27:06 for 47.85%; Dave Young recorded 31:49 for M75 60.61%; and Jo McCaffery clocked 33:14 for W45 48.24%. In the Midlands at the Walsall Arboretum parkrun over a 3-lap course around the Victorian highlights Steven Gore posted a time of 18:22 for an M40 age graded 75.41% and Vicky Gore clocked 23:51 for a W45 68.62%. In the Riverside run in Chester-Le-Street Emma Brook ran 28:01 for W40 54.91%.