Witton Park Relays – Sunday 2nd Feb 2014, Witton Park, Blackburn.
Mud. I’m going to go on about mud again. After such a wet January it’s no surprise there was plenty of mud, but I am getting a little bored of it. Especially as I brought inappropriate shoes.
Seven teams lined up Horwich on a fine winters morning for the 3rd running of this great event. In a slight adjustment to the previous format, teams of 4 competed over a shorter 3.65k up and down Billinge Hill, across the varied (muddy) terrain around the park.
After only the first leg Horwich domination seemed probable. Running for the B team (“Nearly Horwich RMI aka Bob”) Tom Carson showed a dirty pair of heals to Martyn Bell running for the “A”s (“Horwich RMI Red Army”). The sniff of a giant killing did not last long. Tom handed the metaphorical baton to Alastair Murray (using marathon training as an excuse for being slow) who promptly lost the lead before exiting the start finish field to Chris Farrell. Chris extended the lead by a minute and a half (told you I was slow) to set the fastest time of the day, (for which he would receive the first of many trophies later)
and handed over to Joe Mercer. Joe would have had in his mind that Kevan the Elder was behind (Okay – quite far behind. Sorry) and could not let up for a minute. Joe handed over to Kevan the Younger who by now could all but jog around. But not James.
James set the second fastest leg of the day for an emphatic victory. For “aka Bob”, Dave “aka Bob’s son” Jackson had the bit between his teeth, and resisting the urge to cut too many corners, safely brought the team home for a Horwich one two.
To top this, the Ladies also had a well earned victory in a close run race. Lindsey Brindle lead from the front on leg 1, setting the fastest leg for the day. Handing over to Maria Lowe, then Debbie Campbell, and finished off by Nadine Merrick.
Other teams for Horwich finished 9th (Horwich RMI Hillbillies : Glynne Lever, Chris Heys, Stuart Edmondson, Andy Lloyd) 17th (The amusingly named “Horwich RMI Vets A” : Gary Chadderton, Tony Hesketh, Doug Fleming, Graham Schofield) 24th (Rivi Pikers : Mick Green, Alan Ashley, Martyn Bell, Stephen Pearson) and 47th (Horwich RMI Ladies B : Gemma Stokes, Clare McKenna, Christa Whatmough, Lindsey Brindle).
Martyn Bell completed the collection of awards with a trophy for fastest old guy to round off a fantastic day out.
(It was pointed out that with better organisation we could have had a shot at the vets too – sorry)