Lancaster Festive 4k

Lancaster Festive 4k

A few Juniors went up to Lancaster to run the annual Festive 4k. Weather having a bearing on the race with temperatures at 2’C for this quick race. With a few Christmas presents trying to locate their latest Cristmas presents in the form of Garmins. This race being a good fast race prior to the Cross Country Qualifiers on the 3rd January.

With a great start from all the Juniors a once round the Lancaster running track all 6 athletes were well placed in a race containing 214 runners. Out the the circuit first was Nathan Townsend closely followed by Senior runner Jason Parker from Preston Harriers.

The pace settled down and all boys settled into their training race. Lewis Wilkes heading up the youngsters charge through what was mostly a senior race. Next Matthew Flatters toiling with Much larger runners at this pace must have felt daunting. Matthew was being shadowed by Luke Brindle whilst Kieron Kinearly was also tussling with Finley Reid. This Gem of a race is similar to the Lancaster race series were runners take in the footpaths of the Lune and take a turn just before the Bridge.

On the turn Nathan now had Jason on his shoulder so both pressed each other for the lead, Lewis was having his own race but on his own as he had turned in 12th position with clear space behind himself. Matthew had company with seniors from Ilkley & Rossendale. Matthew the same tucking in behind larger men with Luke close behind. Keiron having Luke only meters away this was proving hard and fast for Kieron to keep in touch, meanwhile Finley was closing the gap on his team mates with each passing minute.

So the runners have to run 300m on the track before they get to the finish line, and here’s where the race picked up, with several shouting for Jason and just the same for Nathan it made a nail biting finish along the home straight with Jason just out pacing Nathan to pip him to the post. Not really disappointed Nathans time of 12:24 was exactly a minute faster than last year. Next in Horwich had Lewis Wilkes in 12th place with an outstanding 14:30, a significant improvement in his fast pace racing. Matthew Flatters cheered on by all the family including Grandmother showed his proud parents what he is capable of coming a fabulous 22nd in 15:02, with Luke Brindles family shouting him into 29th with a time of 15:47. Kieron Kinearly in 15:50 also running his fastest road race this year taking 32nd. Having the strongest sprint was Finley Reid taking 3 runners and finishing in 33rd in a time of 15:57.

Without doubt all agreed this was hard and very fast. Hence the pleased Parents and Athletes returned back to Horwich to rejoin the Festive partying and download their latest Christmas gift results on their to much amusement of their coach, who each reminded them, back to training on Mondays lads.


Final Red Rose XC Series, Rossendale

Final Red Rose XC Series, Rossendale

Parents & young Athletes came wrapped up & ready for the final round of the Red Rose XC Series at Marl Pitts Rossendale. Could this race define the Horwich Juniors as series winners of 3 age group categories. The Course has a reputation of being Hard up the Hills with Mud as deep as your ankles, shins if you are on the larger laps, but a well prepared squad made sure they were to show strength in all the age groups. Weather was bitterly cold and wet which made choice of Long Sleeved Tops & Gloves a sensible choice.

The Day started with the U11 Boys race. From the numbers of Horwich runners on the start line of things were looking good. A constant turnout throughout the season has been the teams strength. A race having 75 runners was going to be busy, however the Boys were not fazed and all had great starts. Matthew Flatters had another outstanding race in 3rd Place and also finishing 3rd overall closely followed by Cian Healy in 4th and 4th in series. Nathan Lancaster making the team up in 7th. Matthew Mair was next in 11th Just ahead of Toby Middleton& Finley Reid in 14th. Not to be outdone Isaac Simmonite claimed 19th with Isaac Keating in 13th, Joe Jackson 28th, Elliot Whittle 72nd and finally Jake Mayor in 73rd. Matthew, Cian & Nathan totaled only 14 pts to be clear winners with Leigh in second having 51. This gave the team the Series win having a total of 39 pts over 4 races against Leigh Harriers having 115, absolutely outstanding.

In the U11 Girls containing 85 runners Ella Pendlebury took the race on and lead from the front. Liking the terrain Ella felt confident coming into the race with 3 out of 3. Ella didn’t have it all her own way as Olivia Leigh from Chorley gave good chase. Eventually Ella held onto the front to give herself the final win she needed claiming 4 out of 4. Chloe Russle back from her County swimming managed 4th with Lydia Johnson in 15th. Olivia Bakers best run of the year got her 33rd and Freya Whittle running unwell holding onto 45th place. Milly Lever strong in 49th, Ellie Green 71st and Skye Nicholson 80th. Ella, Chloe & Lydia totaled 20 points which was enough to win the race and also clean up in the U11 girls series. With a 4 race total of 65 pts against Leigh having 83 pts yet again proof Horwich are at their top of their game in this age group.

So what could the U13 Boys achieve? The pressure was on with one or two runners having colds coming into this last race. In the race it was the strong legs of Thomas Massey managing 1ST Horwich in 5th, closely followed by Lewis Wilkes in 7th. This was now very close on the points as Bury also had 2 runners in front of Lewis. It was where Luke Brindle could finish which would determine the teams success. Luke having fallen badly managed to scrape an 11th place which gave Horwich 23 pts and the race win. Next in was Robert Seddon in 15th and Kieran Kinealy in 19th. So this eventually gave Horwich a total of 63pts in the overall series ahead of Bury on 69pts, again another first in recent History for the Club.

Other Individual runs also took pride in finishing really well in the Series. In the Under 15 girls Ellie Baker wrapped up her series with her best performance of the series in taking 17th and giving her 18th overall in the Series.

Under 15 boys had Robert Gibson continued his strong performances of claiming higher places each times and having his strongest race yet in 17th and also giving him 17th in the series.

Overall the Club has seen enormous efforts from Parents, Grandparents, and of course the young athletes of Horwich to make this the Best Red Rose Season for the Horwich Club in it’s History. Club Chairman Pete Ramsdale has not seen such a constant success of results from the younger age group in XC for many a year. Horwich is indeed one of the smaller clubs in this League up against bigger clubs such as Blackburn, Bolton & Leigh. The efforts had been noted by other clubs coaches congratulating Tony & Brenda Hesketh for their successful series of races.

Rossendale Results;

Overall Series Results;

Race to replace the Norman Matthews Winter Hill Fell Race

Race to replace the Norman Matthews Winter Hill Fell Race

On Monday 8th December at 8.30pm in the Harvester Public House opposite the Arena, anyone interested in joining a group of likeminded individuals, to discuss routes around the West Pennine Moors, so that a replacement race for the iconic Winter Hill race can be considered. This is the first of a possible few meetings to discuss this new venture.

The meeting could also be a social gathering for an hour at this festive time.

If you are free – please join us, if you are not free but would like to be involved let Pete Ramsdale know – thanks.