A long time ago…12 Stage Relays

This weekend should have seen the running of the National 12 & 6 Stage Road Relays, but like everything else at the moment, the event has been cancelled due to the coronavirus. Nevertheless, we can still saviour this prestigious competition by re-visiting James Dunce’s report from 2015.


National 12-stage Road Relays:

Sutton Park, Birmingham.

Saturday 11th April 2015

Report by James Dunce

It was with a heavy heart that I arrived at East End Pool to find that the rumours were true. The bus service that had previously ferried us about the country had been ditched. Not to worry, however, as the new vehicle had blue lights and automatic doors. We all looked liked avatars inside that bus, tinged with a pearlescent  blue hue. Who was controlling us, we will never know! I’m guessing some omnipotent lemming overlord.

It was a fine day in Birmingham, fantastic for wandering around the park. It was not a day for fun and games, however. On that day we were to lay our bodies on the line: lungs, hearts, blood, sweat, tears and all. The team might not have been what it could have been, but we had an excellent chance to show what we were made of and of course experience a National event in which the calibre of athlete was both staggering and humbling!

As I ran the first leg, I had a lot of time to kill. I therefore took out my mobile phone and had a go at a bit of photography. I think I really captured a sense of speed with these images and you might appreciate the artistic approach I have taken. If any team mates would like a photo to use as a Facebook profile picture, I would be more than happy to share.

Montage of runners.

Montage of runners.

Having taken a closer look at our line up, it did seem that with the right amount of effort the team could come close to performing as well as we had the previous year. That prediction turned out to be correct, finishing a fantastic 40th position, as opposed to 33rd last year. Happy days! I am also incredibly proud, even more so currently, to be part of TBH as we have been invited to the European 12-stage Road Relays in Prague later this year. What an honour!

Oh and by the way, if you are looking to improve your nutrition, look no further than Greggs. I bumped into Richard Morrell and Ian Hudspith (members of Morpeth Harriers) in the Greggs at Wetherby services. Richard ordered a sausage roll and a baked bean, sausage and cheese melt and they’d just won the Nationals. Greggs is the power, Greggs is the key. Greggs is the only thing fuelling me. (note: other food outlets are available – DD)



Individual Results (leg position in brackets)

41 Tyne Bridge Harriers 5:01:13

James Dunce (37) 29:19
John Hurse (43) 18:14
Tony Carter (46) 32:19
David Moir (45) 18:48
Tom Charlton (43) 30:24
Matt Davison (43) 19:24
Alex Polding (44) 31:34
Charlie Townsend (44) 18:54
Paul Turnbull (46) 32:59
David Daniels (45) 18:47
Andy Smythe (42) 32:16
David Anderson (41) 18:15

Long leg – approx. 5.5M; Short leg – approx. 3.1M

Permanent link to this article: https://www.tynebridgeharriers.com/2020/03/31/a-long-time-ago-12-stage-relays/

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