Cross Country Update and Jubilee Plunge!

Eight Pensby Runners attended the Jubilee plunge today at the Golden Lion, Llangynhafal.  The weather was almost balmy compared to last year’s icy descent, with decent enough grip underfoot.  Everyone made it up to the summit in time (just), and safely back down to the pub again.  A special mention going to Andrew S and Paul C, who were not only festively outfitted, but also ran the whole way with a deceptively heavy (and decorated) Christmas tree carried between them.  Good work!









The new year is nearly upon us, so it’s time for a very quick update on the cross country championships as we transition from the 2018 section into 2019.  So far 38 Pensby Runners have competed over the course of the opening three fixtures, Clarke Gardens, Beacon Park and Arrowe Park.  We had a particularly strong showing at our home fixture, Arrowe Park, with 30 runners competing, despite heavy marshalling and organising responsibilities for the club.  Next up it’s the Northern Championships on January 5th in St Helens.  Roll on 2019, and Happy New Year to all!

Arrowe Park Cross-Country

Many thanks to Gordon, John and all of the marshals for organising Sunday’s Cross -Country Race in Arrowe Park and to our master bakers Rob Beech and Paul Alexander for providing the post-race cakes.

We had 30 runners out, too. Fantastic! Great running everyone, especially those taking part in their first XC race of the season: Wendy Lee, Ali Lewis, Tracy Pennington, Simon Rogers, Nigel Crompton, Jeff Adams, Mark Ezard, Nikos Giotakis, Steve McConville and Steve Ellis. Hope to see you again soon.

Here is the provisional league table following Sunday’s race. Congratulations to Ali Lewis, first Pensby home in the Women’s race (16th overall) and to our first man Rob Grantham who was 4th overall. Lucy Partridge and Rob Beech retain top spots in the league.

The next race is the County Championships on 5th Jan, which you need to sign up for in advance. You can race in the County of your birth or the one in which you live and I’m sending the entries off for Cheshire and Merseyside in the next ten days. Please contact Rob Chalmers if you’d like to participate. Every Pensby runner will be awarded 10 points in the league for this one, regardless of finishing position.

Beacon Park Cross-Country Race

Fine weather again for the second Cross Country race of the season at Beacon Park this morning. Skelmersdale has never looked so good and what better destination for Ralph (3rd Pensby male) and Felicity (running for Penny Lane) to spend their honeymoon after getting married last weekend.

Congratulations to debutant Gary Johnstone (9th Pensby), running his first Cross Country race since he was at school 40 years ago and welcome to the team for their first race of the season: Chairman Roy (11th), Claudia (3rd Pensby female) and Rob Grantham who popped in on his way to work to collect 4th place overall and 1st Pensby home.

The early league positions are taking shape with Rob Beech, Ralph and Alistair Malpas heading the men’s table and Lucy Partridge, Alex Royden and Angela Peerless the women’s. Great running everyone!

Today’s cakes were a Dorest Apple by Richard Shayle (7th) and a last-minute Chocolate Tiffin by me (8th). Do join us at the next race in Arrowe Park on December 16th when Rob Beech and Paul Alexander will supply your post-race sugar fix.

One of those weekends…

Sometimes we have something of a ‘Super Sunday’ weekend at Pensby Runners, when everybody seems to be out running and racing.   This weekend was precisely in that mould, with at least 11 of the club travelling to Amsterdam to take part in either the half or full marathon there.  Rob Beech was running what must have been marathon 101 (which answers the question of whether or not he was going to run any more), and a special mention of Michael Green who broke the three hour mark for the first time (convincingly too in 2:58:28).   The usual Sunday Run also drew in a fair crowd, given the other commitments people had, and on Sunday morning a group of us headed out to Cilcain for the first race of the Winter Fell League – Clwydian Hills.  With over 3000ft of climb and at around 9 miles long, this is a pretty demanding race.  Rob Grantham did brilliantly to take first place overall, despite going wrong early on when he and several other lead runners followed the markers for the u16 route!!  In total 10 Pensby’s took part, slightly down on last year, and we therefore relinquished the Petzel Trophy team prize (we’ll be back!), but as usual everyone really enjoyed the race, and the soup, tea and cake in the village hall afterwards.  Thanks for Pat for supporting and taking photos!


The team prior to start of the race, and Alex, Sam and Paul taking on a brackeny bit!!


Rob hits the hundred mark at Chester

Congratulations to the ten Pensby Runners who completed the Chester Marathon last weekend, and the five who ran in the metric marathon.

Leading home Pensby field in the marathon was Rob Beech in his 100th marathon!  Rob’s been notching up the marathons since 2013, but has really stepped things up in the last few years with over 25 marathons and ultras in the last 24 months alone.  His efforts have taken him overseas to Paris, Amsterdam and Tokyo, and to some pretty random off the beaten path events over here in the UK.  Racking up the numbers hasn’t stopped him from running fast either – Rob’s best times have been sub 3 hours for the last five years, and his pb is a 2:49!  Finally on Sunday he joined the 100 Marathon Club, and received his medal for his efforts.  There was a great turn out in Chester, both of fellow runners and supporters from the club to cheer him in and celebrate with him.  Well done Rob – a huge congratulations from everyone here at Pensby Runners!  

Delamere Interclub Relays

Here are the details for next Saturdays interclub relays at Delamere Forest – The Delamere Interclub Relay Teams (DIRT). The event will take place on Saturday 22nd September 4pm start.
• Teams of 6 (although runners can do more than one leg)
• 4 legs
• Enter on the day (but let us know in advance)
• £2.50 per person
• At Delamere Visitors Centre CW8 2JD
• Teams can be: male, mixed, female or male or female vets.
Leg 1: Railway Slalom 5k 1 team member
Leg 2: Ace of Spodes 8k 2 team members
Leg 3: Lotto 6kish 2 team members
(might be useful to be able to read a map for this one (simple though)
Leg 4: Park Run 5k 1 team member
(This is the usual Delamere park run course)

Marshalls also very welcome.

So start organising yourselves into teams of six.

New Cross-Country Season

As Autumn approaches the new cross-country season beckons. Here are the dates to put in your diary. Who will be the one who manages to run all 9?

League Races & Dates

RACE 1 Sun. 28th October 2018, 10.00 a.m., Clarke Gardens
RACE 2 Sun. 18th November 2018, 10.00 a.m., Beacon Park Skelmersdale
RACE 3 Sun. 16th December 2018, 10.00 a.m., Arrowe Park, Wirral
RACE 4 Sat. 5th January 2018, Merseyside Championships , OR Cheshire Championships, OR Other County Championship (Start Times to be advised)
RACE 5 Sun. 13th January 2019, 10.00 a.m., Town Park, Runcorn
RACE 6 Sat. 26th January 2019, North Of England Championships, (Pontefract Racecourse)
RACE 7 Sun. 3rd February 2019, Croxteth Hall Country Park
RACE 8 Sat. 23rd February 2019, English National Cross-Country Championships, Harewood House, Leeds (Start Time to be advised)
RACE 9 Sun. 24th February 2019, 10.00 a.m., Forest Park, Birchwood

Two Hillforts Fell Race

Well done to the eight Pensby Runners who headed over to Llandyrnog for the Two Hillforts race, as part of the Pensby Fell League.  At just over 9 miles in length, with over 1800 foot of climb, the race has a reputation for being a lovely run in good weather but no push over.  Fortunately the sun was shining, particularly on Rob Grantham who finished second overall.  Great to see a couple of new runners to the League, Hazel and Mark, as well as appearances from the likes of Andie and Claudia who don’t get into the hills as regularly as some, and who both put in very strong performances. Also great to see Nigel and Jeff going from strength to strength as they both recover to hopefully 100% running capacity again after long term lay offs.  I have to put in a mention for Andrew P as well now – he gets a photo in here powering a downhill and looking as comfortable as ever in the terrain – 4th Pensby overall for Andrew.  Great running all round – well done Pensbys!

Thanks to SJ Photography for photos:


September Multi Terrain series

A reminder (and information for newer members) that in September there is the Multi Terrain series every Tuesday night. There is unlikely to be anybody at the club on Tuesdays in September. The races are:

Tues 4th Sept Royden Park 7pm

Tues 11th Sept Harrison Drive 7pm

Tues 18th Sept Thurstaston 6.30pm

Tues 25th Sept Arrowe Park 6.30pm

£1 to enter, Club vests MUST be worn. You are earning points for your club and we’d like to see as many members taking part as possible. Hopefully, see you there.

Hilbre Island Run Sunday 5th August 2018.

The second “Run and Swim” this year took place on Sunday, 5th August to take advantage of the low tide that day. The weather was very warm and very sunny.









As previously, there were three run options – a 7.2 mile run (5 miles out to the main island and 2 miles back); a 5-mile run (3 miles out to the main island 2 miles back) and a 4 mile run (2 miles out to the main island and 2 miles back).


Due to family holidays, numbers were slightly down on our June excursion but nevertheless, 37 plus one dog completed the run, and 22 joined in the swim. Nine members completed various pre-Chester Marathon distances of 5, 8 or 10 miles, prior to the event.


We finished off with coffee at the Lattetude Cafe in Dee Lane.


Hopefully we will have another in 2019.


(Report and photos from Ian Chalmers – and from the club, another big thank you to Ian for once again being the organiser of what was a highly enjoyable and very well run event).