Sunday, 17 February 2008


The sun shone bright on THE PARBOLD HILL RACE but after freezing temperatures the night before there was still a chill in the light S.E. wind.
Setting off in the playing fields i got hemmed in and had to wait until we got out onto the road to give it full throttle ! I made my way though a fast moving pack of runners until we turned left up the quarry climb. Am not sure if it was the 2 hours sleep after my night shift or the slight chill in the air but my legs seemed to lack a bit of sharpness, the mind was willing but the body was still half asleep.I made my way up the steep climb among a sea of bobbing runners, after about 5 mins we reached the top and got ready for the dash down through the parbold fields. This was great fun,legs flying round at maximum speed. i made up a few places in my down hill plunge, up ahead the runners were well strung out.I got back onto a group of runners inclinding first lady Katie ingram as we came off the fields and onto Lancaster road, ready for the next challenge up the famous Parbold hill. as the road steepened i started to drop back, this was not good! my legs would only go at a steady pace even though my mind screamed at them to go faster.The group just in front slowly pulled away , negative thoughts started to flood my mind,am going to get passed,i'm slowing down, Then something clicked in my mind and i started thinking positive [ come on you can do this, almost at the top now,keep driving hard, everyone is suffering }.
once over the top there is a short downhill before turning left onto a farm track and the climbing starts in earnest once again. 2 runners pace me, I hang on to the second one and he drags me along. the wind is behind us now and my legs start to warm up. I can feel am starting to run better as we climb up harrock hill, the legs are showing more willing and i climb at a faster cadence. Am closing in on the group in front again and this gives me renewed energy.
Past the old ruined wind mill and then turn right, down a dangerous narrow slippery, rocky path, great care is needing here unless you want to take a tumble, then out onto the green fields for a very fast downhill gallop, the only thing to slow you down are two fences in the way, i take the girlie approach and side fault them, if your name is Andy Hudson you most probably hurdle them straight! next we go over a wall and run through some trees, the little guy in front takes a short cut i follow only to smash my head on a low branch { they don't call me the tree hugger for nothing ! ] shaken but not stirred i get passed by Andy eccells of wigan Phoenix,i grit my teeth and hold onto him for the last mile and come in to the finish neck and neck just missing out on 36th place by a gnats whisker! I finish 4 mins faster than last year and 12 places higher but left pondering what 8 hours of sleep might have reaped
Rob Ashworth had a fantastic run with 20th place 44.06 i finished second for the club with 46.48
Ray Handley had one of his best ever runs with 48.02 49th. Brian davey 64th 49.17. mike cunningham 75th 50.11
some old faces came out of the wood work inc Garry Kenny 50.29. colin Wolfarth 57.48 and EX SWAC member Brian Gow was also seen out on the course. fast improving Brian O'Reilly had a great run with 50.55 88th .Andy bowker finished with 55.14 b johnson 283rd 1.02

Vicky Harvey was first back for our ladies with 1 hour 16 secs. C handley ran 1.02 for 282 place liz stanfield 1.04 for 305th place Carole James 311th R thomas 315th mechelle spencer after running 17 miles the day before ran 1.05 and 316th place very good training for her up coming marathon, and bev rothwell finished just ahead of margot bowker and sharon pardoe.

I think every one came away having enjoyed the challenge and the beautiful parbold countryside.


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