Adroddiad Ras Moel y Ci Race Report
May I begin by assuring you that the Welsh version of this report will follow very soon.
Well, another fantastic turnout for Ras Moelyci, with 117 runners registering on the day. Once again, many of the runners commented on how they value this race, either as a tester for their winter training, or as the springboard for their preparation for the coming season after a winter of rest, relaxation and wine. Like last year, the weather decided to play ball and although it was really cold, the sun actually came out too although it couldn’t dry up the mud that lay in wait for the runners after so many weeks of relentless rain.
The camera men from local TV company, Rondo Media, asked if they could come along to find out more about sports like fell running that don’t receive much attention. They interviewed some of the runners and organisers as well as catching some video footage from the day. It will appear in their “Clwb” programme soon.
Gareth Hughes running for Mercia set a blistering pace from the off by leading the runners through the thick mud out of the fields of Moelyci farm and on towards the pot-holed tarmac and grassy lanes towards the energy-zapping boggy ascent to the summit, and those close on his heels in the early stages changed position now and again. Sarah Ridgeway of Run Snowdonia led the ladies from the start and never lost grip of this lead.
Even the crazy horses of Moelyci couldn’t put the runners off (you have to see Sports Pictures Cymru’s photos to understand what I’m talking about), and it’s reliably reported that official back marker, Dilwyn Rowlands, tried to jump on the back of one of the horses in order to save his tiring legs. A massive thanks to marshal Steve “SPJ” Jones, for rapidly acquiring horse-whispering skills and calming the crazy equines down. See his separate report as it makes extremely fun and interesting reading (I’ll upload it for him because the old John Wayne wannabe doesn’t do FB much). Thanks too to marshal Dafydd “Bugs” Williams for running up the hill to help SPJ with his horse dilemma, but forgetting to mention his severe allergy to horses and the anaphylactic reaction he usually gets when he’s near a horse. Now that’s dedication!
Once again the views of Elidir Fawr were magnificent as the runners rounded the back of the mountain as they approached the push towards the summit. The slippery descent seems to have claimed a couple of scalps, albeit temporarily, and they got back to their feet and pounded onwards towards the woods. The finish line, in its new position at the top of the small hill, was described by many runners as the sting in the tail of the race, zapping the last of their already waning energy as they clambered up towards the red tape, the smiling faces of Ann, Sharon, Sioned and Arwel with their stopwatches and encouraging cheers of “well done”, and the welcoming aroma of hot soup and a roll.
As many predicted, first over the line was Gareth Hughes (Mercia) in a brilliant time of 39.05, with many onlookers commenting that it could have been the muddy conditions that prevented him from getting closer to Richard Roberts’ course record. Less than a minute later in 2nd place was the lightening fast Spaniard, Michael Corrales (NWRRC), in his first local fell race in a time of 39.52. Not far behind, in 3rd place, was young and ever-improving Eryri Harrier, Owen Roberts, over the line in 40.15. Owen has a fantastic fell running career ahead of him if his current performance is anything to go by. The V40 category was won by Johnny Moore (Eryri) in 43.26. First V50 was David Soles (Pennine) in 45.28. Dei Jones of Eryri claimed the V60 prize and was so excited at his first category win a while. Great to see that even seasoned fell runners with years of experience still get excited by
their performances. Finally in the male section, the ever-impressive Eryri Harrier, Don Williams, easily clinched the V70 title in 57.26.
In the ladies race, and again as many in the know predicted, Sarah Ridgeway (Run Snowdonia) took the title by storm clinching the win, as well as the V40 category in 46.16. Closest rival, Lizzie Irvine (Eryri) crossed the line in 50.18, with Eryri’s Jennifer Charlton coming in 3rd in 51.19. Ali Thomas (Eryri) took the V50 title in 54.42, and Eryri’s Maggie Oliver ensured her name remained firmly on that V60 title by crossing the line in 72.07.
The junior race attracted nine runners and they all performed sterlingly. The race was won by Daniel Soles (Pennine) in 9.06, closely followed by his brother Samuel (Buxton), likely to be some good rivalry there! All the other junior runners did really well and deserve a mention: Georgia Parkinson, Abbi Parkinson, Iolo Llyr Roberts, Dylan Pye, Gwion Rhys Parry Evans, Mared Enlli Evans, and Tilly Craine. Well done all of you. Enjoy the Easter eggs.
Eryri Harriers were well represented at the race with 36 club members running. In total, 117 runners registered and there was only 1 DNF.
A massive thank you to the following for making the race a big success:
All the staff at Ffarm Moelyci; the marshals and other volunteers; and you, the runners. Without all of you, there wouldn’t have been a race.
Race results will be available on the Eryri Harriers website and Facebook pages and the WFRA website.
Please let me know if you spot any errors in this report or the results.