Read on for Olympians and race reports from the Gwent League (Cardiff Cross Challenge) and more!
The Cardiff Cross Challenge gave an opportunity for several young Bristol and West AC Athletes to meet Olympians old and new.
Both Jessica Judd and 2008 Bejing Olympian Kate Reed willingly gave their time answering the girls’ questions and posing for photographs. It can never be underestimated the power of interaction between the generations when motivating the sport’s future.
Dave Taylor, coach, Bristol and West AC
Here’s a race report of the weekend’s antics from Chris Elson:
Despite the dire weather warnings a sizable contingent of Senior Women & Men were enjoying the surprisingly benign weather condition, albeit with a hefty wind in Cardiff. However, Bristol & West AC athletes were competing in a number of other events. Notably Peter Le Grice followed his 2 hours 21mins marathon PB the previous weekend with a 66 min PB while winning the Exeter half marathon. In Manchester, evergreen Annabel Granger posted a debut time of 2 hours 52 for the marathon, the fastest UK W45 this year. In the accompanying half-marathon the club treasurer, W60 Fliss Russell knocked 5 mins of her PB and broke the 2 hours barrier. Further afield Charlotte Taylor-Green was taking a lot of men to the cleaners posting 76 mins for a trail half-marathon in Aviemore. (See below for a comment from Dave!) Nearer home Steve Swan was 7th in the Tough Mudder.
Whilst spending the week in Scotland with step daughter Lucy, Charlotte Taylor-Green took advantage of the stunning Countryside of the Cairngorm Mountains. And what better way to do your Sunday morning steady run, but by popping a number on your vest and taking part in the Aviemore half Marathon. The course was on a mixture of surfaces and Charlotte found the event very enjoyable, chatting to Marshalls on the way round. Her time of 76:28, just gives her the bragging rights in the Taylor-Green household.
At the Gwent League, the ladies were off first and rather swept the board with 1st A, B, C, D & W45 teams and 2nd W35. Individually the event was distinguished by the return to Cross-Country running after a 10 year break by the clubs star Olympian, Kate Reed, who romped home in first place. A class act indeed! Natalie Griffiths thought that she probably set of too fast, but still had an excellent run in 4th place. The ladies A team then packed in with Catie O’Donaghue 9th, Issy Talbot-Price 10th & Amy Partidge 12th. The evergreen W50’s, Sarah Everitt (18th) and Clare Jolliffe (27th), with W35 Julia Belyavin (24th) in between, led the B team home. They were followed by Charlotte Bermingham (45th), making an impressive debut, and Naomi Aylwin (50th). The B team were 4th overall out of the 82 teams competing and top the reserve division. Emma Jolliffe (72nd) led the C team home with W45, Nicky Hodges (82nd), another to make an impressive debut, followed by Anna Ford (85th), Hayley Bennett (87th) and Rosey Mushens (102), the latter two returning after long term injuries. The C team were 14th overall (!) and are 3rd in the Reserve Division. For the D team, Jenny Anderson was in position 118, Fleur Cockley 137, Ali Hurford (4th W55), despite managing the U13’s earlier on in the afternoon, 147, Mel Moss 153 & Carol Kiekuth 212. The D team were 23rd overall & lie 6th (1st D) in the reserve division. 301 women finished.
The men too did rather well with the A team 1st, and the B team 7th overall out of the 105 competing teams. The C, D, E & F teams were 18th, 28th, 37th & 70th overall and are 2nd, 3rd, 5th & 18th in the Reserve Division. The M35 & M45 teams were both 2nd.
Individually, two of our team Silver medallists at the National Cross-Country namely Owain Jones (4th) & Andy Chambers (10th) led the our mens A team home followed by Kurt Taylor (11th), fresh from his recent Cardiff half-marathon PB. Perhaps the surprise package of the day was Josh Moody (13th) producing a brilliant run for a 1500m runner not renowned for his love of gruelling cross-Country courses. Josh was just in front of ever reliable Maciej Bialogonki (15th) (his earlier park run was a 19 min affair).
Andy Watt (17th) led the B team followed by Graham Breen (25th & 4th M40), another with a recent marathon in his legs. Joe Ballard (78th) was next up making a most encouraging debut for the club, there’s more to come there! Leion Grogan (87th) returning to the club showed his class, while Darren Garmen (94th & 10th M45) completed the team.
Andy Molloy (112th & 11th M45) led the C team home followed closely by Dan Titheradge (115), Brad Pontin (119), Nick Roberts (121) & another newcomer to the club Kieran Batty (128). Some good packing in there.
M40 Andy Dunne (135) led the D team home while another M 40 Neil Turney (137th), Matt Burden (153), M45 Mark Taylor (154) and Jon Bennett (160) completed the team. For the E team another newcomer to the club, Callum Grayling (163), led the team home with Michael Chandler (176), M45 Bill Hull (182) Jack Longstaff (195) also making his debut for the club and a cold stricken Dan Schofield (210) completing the team. Darren Tremble (211) and Dave Bedwell (218) made up the incomplete F team. It’s worth noting that Dave is 65 in November, which with 437 finishers gives you an idea of how good he is. Sam Bentley is missing from the results so far possibly because he was issued with an U11 number as the Mens numbers had run out. Last but certainly not least, Tom Burgess was our sole M65 representative and finished 11th.
Please make a note of the next two fixtures, Saturday 10th November, Pembrey Park near Llanelli, a long (just short of 2 hours) drive but a great course, and Sunday 2nd December, Park Bryn Bach, 1hr 14 min drive off the head of the valleys road SW of Abergavenny.