Northumberland Half 10th March, Race Report

International Women’s Day. Mothering Sunday. Tyne Bridge’s Sophie Marr is 3rd placed Senior Woman at the Northumberland Half, taking North Shields Poly’s Suzanne Thew in the final stretch with a superb PB of 1hr 29m 28s. A weekend for the women — and what company. First woman home was Aly Dixon in 1hr 15, with Michelle Avery from Morpeth in second. Here comes the girl.

Sophie now only needs her sub-40 10k and she says she might retire. I can say that at least, for miles 4-6 of this undulating and windy course, I was there when Sophie broke sub-90m for the half. Despite pain in her cuboid on the side of her foot, Sophie kicked on when Thew first overtook her. They had a bit of a word with each other. Sophie put the pain behind her and didn’t let Thew get away, and it paid off in the final stretch.

Two hours earlier we thought the race might not even take place, as the snow came down in Ponteland in a windy blizzard that left visibility for cars less than a hundred metres. There was even a little crash outside the car park where runners waited for the bus to the start line. But by the time the buses arrived at Kirkley Hall the snow had stopped and the sun was even trying to break through, and the roads all the way round the picturesque course were clear of snow.

Three miles in Mark Jackson was fighting his way to the front, overtaking myself, Sophie and David Young, all in the top 50 at that point. Mark was looking strong and comfortable, and quickly disappeared over the small hills. Mark was third Tyne Bridge man home in 1hr 24m 29s, 27th overall, behind first TBH man Mark Hall with a superb run, finishing 15th overall in 1hr 21m 33s, and Ian Jackman in 26th with 1hr 24m 24s. Not far behind was David Young in 1hr 28m. The Senior Men’s top three had a familiar look to it, Yared Hagos from Wallsend winning the men’s race in a magnificent 67-minutes, with North Shields Poly and Gateshead Harriers in 2nd and 3rd.

There had been some grumbles before the race, and a lot of trepidation regarding the organization of numbers and chips that had not been sent out, and phones not being answered. And while most people felt the organization could have been better, the buses at the car parks worked, the race started only five minutes late, and the race itself was through good scenery, roads were relatively clear, and overall was an enjoyable run.

There were fabulous runs all the way through the results. PBs for Tyne Bridge Harriers racers Nick Varley (1hr 35m) and Guy Rintoul, Nick Pearson, Euan Clubbs, Pip Nichol, and great performances from everyone, considering this was not really a PB course with too many undulations to really get into the stride in the first few miles. The conditions were changeable. Going out the wind wasn’t too strong and the hills mostly downhill. Miles 8-10 of the route seemed easiest for many, well sheltered although quite a few uphills. Then the wind really hit about 11.5m in. Putting grumbles aside, it seemed most people had a good race.

But the day belongs to Sophie Marr, representing the women. A phenomenal result, a PB by 45-seconds, and providing that presence at the finish line that meant she is now a noted club runner among all the other club women in the North East. Well done Sophie. Official Results for the race here.

TBH Results (chip times)
Mark Hall 1:21:33
Mark Jackson 1:24:04 PB
Ian Jackman 1:24:21
David Young 1:28:44
Sophie Marr 1:29:28 PB
Alex Lockwood 1:31:45
Dave Anthill 1:32:21
Guy Rintoul 1:34:11 PB
Nick Varley 1:35:16 PB
Nick Pearson 1:35:17 PB
Euan Clubbs 1:35:51 PB
Catherine Willis 1:36:11
Neil Capstick 1:40:13 PB
Pip Nichol 1:41:03 PB
Stuart Dickson 1:41 PB
Annette Kelly 1:47:54 PB
Bryan Ankers 1:50 PB
Vicky Cuthbertson 1:53:57
Vicky Forster 1:57:30 PB
Kevin Cheetham 1:58:04
Scott Wilkinson 2:18 PB
Gwen Burin 2:18

(I’ll put up Tyne Bridge results as they come in).

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    • Guy Rintoul on 10th March 2013 at 14:12
    • Reply

    Good report! Wee correction though – I was actually 1:34 (PB)… 1:41 was my time last year :)

      • on 10th March 2013 at 14:28
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      corrected! well done Guy

        • Guy Rintoul on 10th March 2013 at 14:29
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        Np. Cheers Alex! :)

    • kenny mac on 10th March 2013 at 14:13
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    Great report Aoex and in record time, you should consider a career in Journalism ha. Well done to all runners some amazing times.

    • Euan on 10th March 2013 at 14:21
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    Great write-up Alex, and super-fast getting it posted! My watch time was 1:35:51.

    • Cat on 10th March 2013 at 14:58
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    Cracking report. Thanks Alex! Where did you get the results. They up already. My watch time was 1’36’11?

    • Cat on 10th March 2013 at 14:58
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    Cracking report. Thanks Alex! Where did you get the results. They up already. My watch time was 1’36’11?
    Well done Sophie! Awesome running :)

    • Jacko on 10th March 2013 at 16:18
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    Well done one and all – I have to say once it got going (with the worst air-horn in history – which was a wee bit of a laugh) it was a canny run like. Hit just past 9mi in 60m.

    Fantastic run Sophie BTW – hope you got something good for it.

    Well done all TBH’ers that come to race on perhaps one of the nastiest mornings you can get in March LOL – the car ride home looked a lot nicer than a 13.1 mile run @ 08:12!

      • Guy Rintoul on 10th March 2013 at 17:07
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      Haha, agreed… I was half-tempted to knock off the race and go to the pub instead when it started snow, hail and wind! ;)

    • Double D on 10th March 2013 at 16:32
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    Well done to everyone who took part, and many congratulations to all those who ran a PB. It’s never easy running well on an undulating course – and in breezy conditions – but it seems most of you took it in your stride. The positive aspect for me is that it’s still early in the year and members should be running a lot quicker in a few month’s time. (GNR should hold no fear for anyone).
    Special thank you to Alex for a terrific report.

      • Jacko on 11th March 2013 at 07:53
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      Indeed I hear Alex will be providing on the move commentary to get the report written even faster! After all it’s all about improvement! :)
      Hope everyone is feeling fit & healthy this morning!

        • on 11th March 2013 at 10:15
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        I can probably put a web cam on my head and do a live video link next time.

    • Vicky on 10th March 2013 at 18:37
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    Well done to everyone who ran today especially sophie. The course was lovely and i was pleased all the snow melted. Please can you add me to your results 1.53.57 thanks

      • kevin cheetham on 11th March 2013 at 08:30
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      great report alex another excellent turnout and performances from TBH this was my first half marathon since 1984

      and was a bit concerned with pre race reports but everything on the day was fine[ apart from the weather at times] and with the help from vicky forster around the course i managed to complete in 1.58.04

      • on 11th March 2013 at 10:07
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      Vicky, what’s the surname?

    • Scotty on 11th March 2013 at 09:19
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    2hrs 18 mins for me. A new PB by 22 minutes!

    • Big Ron on 11th March 2013 at 13:00
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    Well done everyone but especially to Sophie for a fantastic run. It was bad enough training yesterday never mind racing.

    To those of you whose result is not listed above, please email me your full name and finish time to ensure that the result goes into the club database. I have looked at the official results but they don’t incluse the club so finding all our participants would be a nightmare!

    • Arthur Christmas on 11th March 2013 at 13:14
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    Ron check power of 10 I have updated most of our result on there.

    • Nick Pearson on 11th March 2013 at 14:41
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    It’s not really a huge difference but my chip time was actually 1:35:00, the time listed above is the gun time.

    Well done everyone, some really excellent results and a staggering amount of PB’s on what wasn’t a flat course. Nice to see pretty much everyone getting better!

    • Simon Pryde on 12th March 2013 at 00:02
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    Great report, and some fantastic times! Saw Sophie’s name in the Journal this morning… what a fantastic result. But lots of great times and PBs… well done all!

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