Final 2019 British Champs report: Creag Dhubh

Final 2019 British Champs report: Creag Dhubh

The final British Champs race took place in Newtonmore, in the guise of a Highland Games gathering. As anticipated, it was something of a bun-fight, with over 5 fences to cross on the route out, plus a river to negotiate, and the same again on the return…which would have all been manageable with a small field, however with around 300 competitions, it was a bit ‘chaotic’. Suffice to say, Im relieved to still have my teeth, after narrowly missing an elbow on one of the energetic fence crossings…

6 Harriers travelled up for the race: Becki Law, Matt Fortes, Richard Roberts, Russell Owen, Kate Worthington and Miranda Grant. Im sure you’ll be glad to know our hearing is still intact after being exposed to around 500 bagpipes all playing in unison….

The final standings for Eryri Harriers in the British Champs are:

Richard Roberts 8th V40, and Matt Fortes 10th V40. Russell Owen is a fantastic 3rd place overall in the V60 competition, well done Russell!!

Miranda Grant was =5th, and Kate Worthington 10th V40 woman!

A breakdown of results is found here:

Well done everyone who took part in the British Champs this year, roll on next years races!!

Mountain running update

The last two weekends have been pretty busy on the hill running front, with Arenig Fawr race (both a WFRA champs and North Wales champs counter…with surprise marshalling appearance from fell running legend Joss Naylor, no less!) and Moel Siabod race last weekend, and Tal-y-Fan plus the various distances (10k/ Half-/ Full-marathon/ Ultra) in the AAH-organised Snowdonia trail races this weekend just gone. Well done all who have taken part, there were some excellent results across the two weekends.

Race reports and results can be found at the links below.

And I don’t know if anyone knows but theres this little under-the-radar race taking place in Llanberis this Saturday 😉. Importantly, its a Club Champs race, so really good luck to everyone running in the Snowdon Race!!…/welshfra/home/race…/about-us/2019…/race-report-2019

Tal y Fan race report and results

Ras Tal Y Fan      Saturday 13 July 2019

Friday, the day before the event, the mist was low and the rain was light but persistent as a few arrows and marker canes were being put out along the course where runners had a history of making navigational errors.  A bigger problem was the missing stile, where we would normally put a sign near Bryn Derwydd, there was now only a gate, and lots of sheep on either side of it.  The issue, where to find another marshal at such short notice.  Stuart McDonald, who had been recruited as “Sweeper” was phoned, he was now on the gate; and I went to find my fell shoes and bum bag; so much for an easy afternoon on the carnival field eating ice cream!

Saturday dawned, the mist and fog were still down, with little breeze to blow them away quickly.  We certainly did not need a water station setting up at the first checkpoint, if the weather continued it could become a bog-snorkelling race.  By 1pm runners were arriving at registration, and for the first time we had over 60 entries.  Headcount done, and warnings about cows given, the race started.  The leaders rocketed off, reaching checkpoint one in 15 minutes, while the tail-enders were still walking up the hill to the youth hostel.  However, the marshals reported that the quick leader was navigationally challenged, and that they had been yelling at him to follow the path, and not to head off left…

Up towards the summit, and into the cloud.  The footpath gave a good indication of the way to the trig point, but you could not see the top, even from the preceding false summit.  Checkpoint two reported all runners were accounted for, but as we left the summit, the visibility was about 50m, so no there was no opportunity to take a visual on the stone circle, it was going to be a grid bearing or memory of the route across the open moorland bog.

With the tail-end runner close behind me, I led down the hill.  For a minute we could see Mike Blake with the penultimate runner ahead, and then he was gone, hidden by a dip or the mist.  Following narrow sheep paths we headed to the stone circle.  Checkpoint 3 reported 6 unaccounted for.  The prior tail ender was sent off along the course, as a group of five came out of the mist having gone a long way left, more towards Llanfairfechan than Penmaenmawr.  That left one runner unaccounted for.  Neither Mike nor I had seen anyone.  We started to check the check point list to ascertain the number of the missing runner.  Then out of the murk, a shadow appeared.  The runner had gone too far right, but knew when he found telegraph posts that he needed to double back to the checkpoint.

With a big sigh of relief, we headed off along the North Wales Coastal path.  The farmer was out on his quad bike checking sheep, so it was good to know all the gates had competent marshals.  We stopped for a brief chat with the marshals, and continued along the course, now picking up arrows, and canes as we went.  All the runners had passed the footbridge, and the cloud was starting to lift.  We passed another marshal, with jelly babies and water on offer, before up the last hill, down to the last checkpoint and back to the road.

Heading down into the village, the mobile rang – have you a runner with you?  Where are you?  By the time we reached the village the tail ender had been located.  Maybe he had stopped off for a beer, but he was safe.  All accounted for, it was presentation time.

Up at the front, Josh Hartley (Blackcombe), Neal Crampton (Pudsey), Lloyd Taggart (Manx), Jack White (Norwich) and Mark Davies (NWRRC) had had a close run race.  Russell Owen broke the V60 record, finishing in 14th place in 1-19-02.  The Ladies were brought home by Hayley Evans (Buckley) in 1-26-15.

Thank you to all our marshals, registration team and runners for making it an enjoyable afternoon.

Helen Blair

records TAL Y FAN RESULTS 2019 final


Eryri Road Running Championships Table

 Eryri Road Running Championships Table following Wednesday’s LlanfairPwll 5k
 where Ian Edwards strengthened his lead with a 2nd place finish in a time of 16:57 with, 5th Dyfed Whiteside-Thomas 18:01 and 7th John Davies 18:13 also finishing in the top ten of 156 finishers.
In total, there were 14 Eryri Harriers competing..
Full race results can be found on the event Facebook Page:

3rd British Championship Race

Late reporting on the 3rd British Championship Race: Great Lakes…in the Lakes
8 Eryri Harriers made the trip to Langdale, to the wonderfully named Stool End Farm, for the the 3rd race in the British Championships.
The route itself was slightly intimidating, taking in several biggish hills before reaching Englands highest peak, Scafell Pike, where conditions are tricky underfoot, followed by several more not-insubstantial climbs and descents (and a touch of scrambling up a gully) before negotiation the rocky, time-eating descent from Pike O’Blisco followed by a breakneck descent down its lower, grassier slopes (for those who weren’t concerned about the seat of their shorts, it was quicker/ kinder to tired legs to bum-slide).
First in for the Harriers was Matt Fortes in 63rd place (14th V40), followed by Rich Roberts in 80th (18th V40). Next was Emlyn Owen in 103rd (13th V45), with a sprint-off on the descent to come in a place ahead of Miranda Grant in 104th (8th F). Russell Owen was 5th Harrier in 196th (8th V60) followed by Becki Law in 224th (35thF), with Nia Albiston in at 227th (7th V40) and Kate Worthington a joint 262nd (10th V40).
I have to admit, Im mystified about our Team placings as this hasn’t yet been updated…
Great racing from everyone, and no navigational errors (maps did have to come out on this one!), so well done everyone on getting stuck-in, in difficult conditions to start with (heavy rain and cloud), and getting around without mishap!
Final British Champs race is the mighty but short Creag Dubh race in Newtonmore on 3rd August. If you like doing a lap of a Highland games field and leaping several fences, probably to the tune of bagpipes, this is the race for you! Entries on the day for this one, and there’ll be several people heading North, so get in touch if you fancy it and we can try and arrange group car-sharing.
Photos of some of the team (sans Emlyn) next to a large manure pile, at Stool End Farm 😉

Borders League 2019/20

Borders League 2019/20

Race 1 – 13/10/2019 – Eryri (Caernarfon)

Race 2 – 10/11/2019 @ 09:30am – Deeside

Race 3 – 01/11/2019 – Wallasey

Race 4 – 12/01/2020 – Abergele

Race 5 – 15/03/2020 – Helsby or Wrexham

Race 6 – 05/04/2020 – Ellesmere Port

Race 7 – 22/04/20120 – Wrexham or Helsby. Nos Fercher (Presentation Evening)

Helsby or Wrexham to stage the presentation evening depending on venue availability

North Wales Trail Running Championships

Any club member who wants to enter the North Wales Regional Trail Running Championships must enter the event by this Sunday 30th June. There will also be entries for the event on the day but, you would not count or be eligible for any North Wales Regional awards.
Sunday 7th July – Fairy Freckled Cow – Llyn Alwen 11k Trail Race @ 11:30am (North Wales Regional Trail Running Championships)

Eryri Road Running Championships Update

Eryri Road Running Championships Update, attached. Any corrections? Please contact myself.
Six races completed, a further six to go.

Wednesday 10th July – Llanfairpwll 5k @ 6:45pm

Tuesday 16th July – Hwyl y Bont (Bontnewydd 10k)

Wednesday 7th August – Caernarfon 10k @ 7:00pm  £10

Saturday 26th October – Snowdon Marathon (Race Full)

Sunday 3rd November – Abergele 5 Mile (North Wales Championships)

Sunday 17th November – Conwy Half Marathon £33



Rob Samuel, competing for Wales, led the team to the title, winning the tough 26km trail running event in a time of 2:00:25 while Eryri & Welsh Team colleague Richard Roberts finished 15th in a time of 1:12:12. There were 1060 finishers.