Results from the NECAA XC Championships at Sedgefield can be seen on our Results page
Congratulations to all our athletes, for a small club we came away with quite a few medals, both individual and team, as well as the biggest turnout of any club in the whole race for the senior men! Thank you to everyone who competed, and the coaches and family members who offered their vocal support on the day! (Plus a certain Mr Darcy)
IMPORTANT - Remember to take £1 (exact change if possible) for parking (it's a voluntary payment, collected in a bucket as you exit the car park area, but let's do our bit for our local sports organisation!)
For timetables etc. please see our race info page
Results link HERE
A thank you note from the organisers, to everyone who helped out on the day:-
We are so sorry it has taken this long to send a note reflecting our huge gratitude for your support at the Great North Run - where does the time go? Having delivered the rest of the Great Run series we are now taking time to reflect. I find myself thinking where to start? Which is a nice change to the big question of this year which was where to finish?!
Following some fantastic performances, Birtley men picked up the team award, coming away with the impressive trophy shown below Bill's report - well done lads, and to everyone who competed on Sunday - amazing efforts by all!
Race report courtesy of Bill McGuirk
PERFECT conditions were the order of the day for the 500-strong field contesting the
Heaton Memorial 10k on Newcastle Town Moor which incorporated the North East
Counties and NE Masters Championships.
And competitors, who lined up for an impeccable minute’s silence before going on their
way, took full advantage as they produced excellent performances which was headed by the
newly-crowned men’s and women’s champions, Calum Johnson and Sonia Samuels.
Johnson, the current National cross-country champion, heads for Liverpool in two weeks’
time in a bid to make the GB&NI team for the European Cross-Country Championships in
Dublin, set out his stall from the gun taking an early lead and from then to the finish was
never headed. At the half-way point, reached in 14min 22secs, the Gateshead athlete had a
36-seconds advantage over second-placed George Lowry (Morpeth) who was followed 15
seconds behind by Sam Hancox (Morpeth), 2018 winner Birtley’s Adrian Bailes and Jariah
McKenna of Bristol and West, who was runner-up behind Bailes three years ago. Following
the leading five came Gateshead’s Conrad Franks and Tyne Bridge duo Tom Charlton and
Johnson continued to cut out a lone furrow on the second circuit extending his advantage
with every stride so much so when he hit the finish line (a course record of 28:28) he was
close to two minutes clear of his nearest rival which was Bailes who managed to outsprint
McKenna to claim the county silver medal with McKenna, now living in the North East,
picking up the bronze award.
Hancox, showing signs of getting back to his best after a number of problems, was delighted
with his fourth place after finishing ahead of Morpeth team-mate Lowry, who was fifth,
Franks (6th) and Hedley, who was the pick of the Tyne Bridge pair, who finished seventh.
Meanwhile, in the women’s section it was a triumph for Loughborough-based Samuels who
took in the race while visiting family for the weekend. The Rio Olympian, now 42, always
headed her rivals and by half-way, reached in 16:38 was over a minute clear of Elswick’s
Justina Heslop who had a similar advantage of fellow Elswick athlete Amy Fuller with Jarrow
and Hebburn’s Alex Sneddon back in fourth place.
On the run for home Samuels continued to up the tempo and she, like Johnson, was
rewarded with a new course record of 33:32 as she crossed the line in 25th place overall.
Heslop, like Samuels, a former National cross-country champion during their teenage years,
showed signs of that form in what was her first serious outing since finishing third at
Saltwell in 2018, finished a comfortable runner-up while Sneddon moved through in the
later stages to claim the bronze award. Elswick teenager Imogen Bungay finished in fourth
place followed by Kathryn Stevenson (Tyne Bridge) with Fuller, after earlier prominence,
crossing the line in fifth spot.
** Thanks go to Heaton Harriers’ and all their volunteers, and that, of course, includes all
the people who manned the cake stall which accumulated over £500 for charity, for once again hosting an excellent event
*** NOW that the dust has settled and having done my race report 24 hours earlier, it has been suggested by a number of competitors that the course for Sunday’s Memorial 10k road race may in fact have been slightly short. The organisers have taken on board the concerns and are looking into the matter and will make an announcement on their findings in due course.
Photos here by Stuart Whitman
Full senior results here (apologies, don't have the junior results link at the minute)
At the recent DABGC Presentation Evening, Ed Lown was presented with the prestigious Dave Lumley Lifetime Achievement Award, for his services to athletics. Congratulations Ed, much deserved!
This competition below is open to all Durham Association of Boys and Girls Clubs members:
The National Association of Boys & Girls Clubs are searching for Britain’s Fittest Teen from across their network of youth clubs and projects.
Britain’s Fittest Teen competition launches at 9am on Monday 1st November and runs until mid December!! Feel free to click on the image below to see the promotional video.
Britain’s Fittest Teen is the first UK-wide functional fitness competition for young people in youth clubs and projects and is fully endorsed by the Fitness Racing Federation.
The event will be a hybrid online and in-person event. The initial rounds will take place at clubs and scores registered online, before the top six competitors are invited to attend a final’s day at CrossFit Rotherham in the new year.
Any competitors can register for the event from 9am on Monday 1st November and have until midnight on Friday 17th December to register their scores.
Clubs are required to submit their entries to their local county office to be authorised, after which they will receive a code to register on the online portal, where they will be able to submit their scores. All the details of the exercises and accompanying videos are also on the portal. If you are interested in taking part in this, please email me.
All those who are invited to the final will have the opportunity to receive some professional Functional Fitness instruction at a nearby CrossFit Gym.
For more details and entry forms, please click here.
This is a great event that ALL young people can get involved with back at their clubs. I hope that you can encourage your young people to get involved.
Andy Hamill – National Director – National Association of Boys & Girls Clubs
It has been a mixed few weeks. On Tuesday I returned home after an unexpected overseas trip, and on Wednesday I received an email from the organisers of the Lanzarote Marathon due to be held in December 2021 that it was cancelled and they were refunding race entry fees.
The unexpected overseas trip had also affected the training for the Lanzarote Marathon, so unsure if the cancellation was a blessing in disguise. It was disappointing and a relief at the same time.
From a Facebook page, I noticed the North East Marathon Club had organised a Marathon/Half Marathon for Sunday 7 November on the town moor. Preferring the training not going to waste, I entered the half marathon. The last time I ran the race was in 2015 and this was ran in almost tropical conditions. The 2021 race was the first race I have competed in the UK for some considerable time.
The weather on Sunday was totally different to 2015 and was certainly not the best running conditions. The Town Moor was very cold and very windy. I do not think there was anywhere on the course where the wind was not blowing in your face. Certain parts of the course were blowing you off the paths that cross cross the Town Moor. Dressed in a Birtley Vest and shorts, when all of the locals strolling on the moor were dressed as if they were going on an Antarctic expedition was a strange experience.
The race was three and a half laps of the Town Moor, following in part the Parkrun course. It was well marshalled by volunteers from the NEMC and a local scout group. The laps were chip timed so I look forward to seeing the splits. The final lap was slower than the rest due to a combination of the cold and cramp. I did not take any fluids on board during the entire race – very bad move. Many thanks to all at the NEMC for making the race happen it was an enjoyable experience.
On finishing the race was given a medal – picture below. I love it – totally original. I was happy with the time to complete the half Marathon – it was where I expected it to be, with room for improvement.
On reflection was it the Town Moor Mooathon and half Mooathon?
This weekend saw an unusual all-girl turnout at the Northern XC Relays, which took place at Graves Park in Sheffield. There were some solid performances from the incomplete U15 girls team Maggie and Daisy Graham, while the U20 team of Amy Drummond, Eve Southern and Tess Graham held their own amongst the senior women with a mid field finish.
However, stand out performances of the weekend came from the U11 girls, with Kitty Graham setting the standard in the first leg for Izzy Hall and Nell Graham to ably follow, with all three girls holding on to pole position to finish the race as Northern U11 Champions - well done to them, and all the young women who competed on Saturday, you did Birtley proud!
I originally entered to run the Palma 10K in October 2020, but this was cancelled for the obvious reason and the entry was rolled forward to 2021.
We booked our holidays for 2021 and were in a small resort near to Cala Millor – about 70- 80KM from Palma.
The organisation of the race was first class. I collected the race number and the T-shirt in Palma. I had to present either a test certificate stating I was Covid free when collecting the race number or proof of double vaccination.
Sunday morning – panic. Public bus did not turn up and resulted in very expensive taxi across Majorca to Palma.
Sunday morning, the 10K race started at 08:45 from a road adjacent to the Cathedral. The race was an out and in race along the Harbour on largely flat roads. There was an incline in the last half a mile or so of the out leg but that was tempered by a similar decline in going back. The views of the harbour were fantastic and slightly envious of the boats in the harbour. The race finished on the main road opposite Palma Cathedral – it was quite a backdrop.
The heat was not too dissimilar to the UK – a pleasant 25oC steadily rising as the race went on. The aim of the run was to maintain a steady 12 min mile pace from start to finish which was achieved – to ensure a later run this year over a longer distance would be achievable in the same heat conditions.
Once the race was over a food goody bag was received together with a can of coke and a draught pint of Estrella.
Apologies no photos, but a big shout out to George Routledge of Heaton Harriers who also ran. Last time I saw George before this was at the Lanzarote 10K in December 2019 – nearly a lifetime ago.
Birtley AC will be hosting the annual Durham Boys and Girls Club XC Championships at Lord Lawson on Sunday 17th October. We need lots of volunteers to help the event run smoothly:- marshals for the course, people to help set up and/or dismantle, and help with refreshments which will be sold to raise funds for the club. The event is normally finished by lunchtime, so you don't have to commit to a full day of volunteering! You don't even have to miss out on your child competing, as marshalling will give you a great support point to cheer them on!
Please use the form below if you can help - we can't run the event without you!
To enter your child in the event, use the form at the bottom of the page (also linked HERE)
As we have no access to Lord Lawson on Tuesday because of an Open Evening, the training groups are meeting as detailed below:-
Birtley Joggers and Fiona/Emily's group are meeting at Birtley Baths for a 7pm start.
Gary's group is training in Princess Ann Park, Washington. They are meeting at the St Robert's side road at 18.45 - if anyone needs a lift to get there, Gary has six spaces available and can pick you up from Lord Lawson and drop you back afterwards.
Tommy will also be meeting at Birtley baths at the usual time.
Normal service resumes on Thursday at Lord Lawson.
We'd like lots of you to step up and enter these relays please! Our mens teams did so well at the Northern Relays that they have won a team place in the prestigious 6 stage event, and there are junior and women's events too, so it should be a great day out for all - however, there is a very short window of opportunity for entries, as we must have your names (and refundable entry fee) by September 30th. Please head to our noticeboard page or go directly to the club shop and get your entries in as soon as possible!
A coach may be provided, if enough people pay for a seat on it - please book your place here ASAP if you are interested.
Due to a certain virus that shall not be named, the winners of the 2019-2020 Harrier League finally received their awards (over a year late) at a socially distanced presentation at the Start Fitness shop in Newcastle last night. Chris Perkins won the U15 Boys prize, with Katie Francis receiving the runner up award in the U15 Girls category. Darren Purvis came first in the Masters Men category, but was unable to attend, so his award was collected by David Francis, who also picked up the team trophy on behalf of our senior men, who came second overall in league 2. Well done to all - let's hope we can get some repeat performances this season, and even add to the silverware!
As there is a parent evening taking place on Tuesday September 28th, we have no access to Lord Lawson for that date, and coaches have made the following arrangements for their coaching groups:-
Tom Millmore:- Due to Lord Lawson being unavailable on Tuesday, my group (although everyone welcome) are meeting at the Team Valley Trading Estate. There’s a 5k loop which is flat, on footpaths and well lit.
If you don’t want to do the 5k then there’ll be an alternative session available.
Post code NE11 0SZ meet for 7pm.
Let me know if you want any further information.
Emily & Fiona plus Birtley Joggers:-Please note that Fiona's, Emily's and the Joggers groups will meet at Birtley Baths on Tuesday for a 7pm start.
Gary Curtis:- My group we will meet at the baths this time.
We'll all be back at the school on Thursday as usual.