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Wrekin Fell 2005

After a very hectic start to the morning due to the school not being opened up until 10:30am & increased entries of the English championship classification, things eventually settled down. Apologies for families kept waiting especially as some had to travel long distances. It was therefore a relief when the races got underway on time. Special thanks here to the Woodhead’s whose enthusiasm helped immensely.

The U10’s course of about 1 mile in length consisted of a lap around the school football & playing areas with some banks to negotiate. Some parents felt that it wasn’t enough for their children, but given the age difference in the race it was justified in doing this. The Ercall hill could have been used but most of the course is not visible & therefore causes other issues within this age group.

For the other junior races the courses were all on the Ercall hill & judged to be a good test especially with the route reversed from previous years. This took them up the steeper route then descended a short steep section before a fast technical run down a wet track & into the school to finish.
The U16’s had an additional loop added to increase the distance which included the steep climb that the seniors race has. Feedback from parents & children on the day were good where they felt courses were tough but right for the ages & demanding enough for the English Champs. For further reports please see the juniors section.

Wrekin Fell race – Inter counties, Open, U18 & U20
Race entries were significantly boosted from last year with 209 finishers, this was due to the, inter counties, U18 & 20 categories. The inter counties attracted some fell running big names & the long standing course record of 34:27 set by John Wild in 1980 looked like it may be under threat but this was not to be as 2 top namesboth Tim Davies & Tim Austin last minute.

With the race underway Will Levett (Shropshire) a trainee teacher, committed himself early on & broke clear of the pack on the Ercall hill. Talking to Ian Holmes (Yorkshire) at the finish he thought that Will would eventually fade & be caught & was somewhat surprised at Will’s fitness level! The gap had grown to 43 seconds at the finish. Will was pleased with his performance & felt that if he was being more challenged then he may have got closer to the course record, conditions on the day were ideal.

The ever consistent Mark Croasdale (Lancashire) was first vet in 14th overall. Mary Wilkinson (Yorkshire 1/2 marathon champion) won the womens race for Yorkshire in the 2nd ever fastest time. Dry & mild conditions made for fast running however the 1977 course record set by John Wilde still stands with Will commenting that if he had been pushed harder then it could have been within sight.

In the women’s race there was an even bigger gap between 1st & 2nd with the Yorkshire ½ marathon champ, Mary Wilkinson (Yorkshire) a staggering 3 minutes clear of Christine Howard (Matlock AC).
Sally Newman lead the vets home in a very respectable 4th overall. The inter-counties results were less of a surprise with the Yorkshire Men retaining their title & the Women winning the title for the first time ever.

Apologies for the presentations being delayed, this was due to the results taking longer than expected to process on the day, especially with the addition of the inter-counties. Some errors were noted & have now being corrected accordingly which did lead to some confusion on the day.

Andy Smith (TAC)
Unknown user,
3 Dec 2009, 09:13