Elswick Cup 2011
Mark ‘Cuthbert’ Reynolds reports from Newcastle Town Moor
After a grey, cool day on Tyneside the clouds parted and dazzling sunshine bathed central Newcastle for this year’s Elswick Cup. Tyne Bridge Harriers were well represented with Tony Carter, Denise Waugh, Emma Moir, David Rowe, Richard Tailford, Allan Wallace, David Young and myself pulling on the iconic black and white vest for a 5k race on a warm, still summer evening.
Some were using this as preparation for next week’s club championship at the Morpeth 10k, others were keen to do a 5k under race conditions whilst one individual was merely using the race as part of his daily 15 miler – [no names but sounds a little bit like Phoney Starter]. Registration was in the Crazy Golf clubhouse where you could also pick up a putter and scorecard for a post race round.
It seems to be the latest fashion to run anti-clockwise round the Town Moor these days, with many preferring this direction for its long downhill finish. There was a good turnout with lots of familiar faces and clubs represented and a slightly more determined atmosphere in the air than on a Saturday morning. The course varied from the familiar Parkrun route by starting in Exhibition Park and circling the lake before heading out onto the moor proper. We then headed up the gravelly hill for the first mile before turning left through the gates and onto Grandstand Road and back onto the moor for the downhill stretch.
I tried to keep up a good pace and was feeling fairly good up to this point. My plan was then to try and use the long descent back to Exhibition Park to gain a bit of gravity assisted momentum for the finish. This worked fairly well and I picked up a few places but clearly everyone was pushing on to the line. We went back into the park, round the back of the tennis courts and past the, disappointingly empty, bandstand before finishing with a final whizz back round the lake to the start again.
There was plenty of noisy support from TBH’ers round the course yelling us on which was great. TC was first over the line for Tyne Bridge with a 17 minuter. I crossed the line a couple of minutes later and glanced down at my watch to see a time just outside my Parkrun PB, which I was pretty pleased with. Richard Tailford was a minute off his best but, encouragingly, looking strong after an injury enforced lay off, with no adverse reaction. Dave Rowe and Dave Young came in close together around the 20 minute mark with Richard. Denise wasn’t too happy with the bright sunshine which warmed things up a bit before the start but wasn’t too far off her best either. Spectators reported the winning time as a sub-15 blur with no close challengers.
The other big difference to Parkrun was a welcome goody bag at the end including fruit, water, Start Fitness discount card and a More Mile training top which, brilliantly, the organisers had arranged to be in TBH colours! (Should make it all the easier to recruit plenty of new unattached members as they’ll already have the T-shirt).
All in all a good, well organised, event in heart of the city and one I’ll be coming back to next year. Many thanks to Newcastle City Council Parks and Countryside Service for the organisation and also to the course marshals for their encouragement. Great running and banter, as ever, from the Tyne Bridge collective – bring on Morpeth!
Tyne Bridge Harriers Results
17 Tony Carter 17:18
58 Mark Reynolds 19:48
65 Richard Tailford 20:11
67 David Rowe 20:22
82 David Young 21:07
87 Alan Wallace 21:21
108 Emma Moir 22:36 – 2nd F40
139 Denise Waugh 25:02 – 4th F40
full results can be found HERE