A mighty crowd of 37 Red Rose Runner hired a coach and descended on Chester to take part in the Marathon and Metric Marathon. Brilliant performances and plenty of personal bests were achieved as a result of the camaraderie and support along the course. Twenty one of the group completed the marathon with Stephen Woodruffe leading the way with an excellent time of 3.14.45. He was followed by a steady stream of equally notable performances from Andrew Fairweather ,3.16.07, John Naylor 3.16.37, Michael Oddie 3.18.30, Manolo Mendoza 3.22.18, Scott Jackson 3.24.33 and Ben Smithers 3.26.54. Our leading lady,Hannah McCusker ran a fantastic time of 3.43.04 with Sue Brookes also smashing the 4 hour barrier with a great time of 3.48.18. Chris Patterson also finished inside 4 hours with his time of 3.58.52.

More PB’s and huge achievements ,not least Mary Conway running in her ENGLAND vest, followed. Glynnis Leo 4.11.04, Chris Corrigan 4.12.33, Natalie Lewis 4.20.19, Wendy Ward 4.43.39, Mary Conway 4.51.47, Amiee Midgley 4.52.57 (PB) Steven Pickering 4.57.24, Failsal Ali 5.20.53(PB) running as a mobile phone and collecting money, Gareth Fairey 5.47.19, Gina Biggs and Nikki Bentley achieved a course PB and personal targets, together in 5.48.17.

The Metric Marathon is a popular event at Chester. Measuring 26.2 km or 16.3 miles, it is still a testing distance. Simon Croft opted for this race and finished in 1.40.53 to take 9th place. Laura Houghton finished 7th in her age group with a time of 2.11.59, followed by Natalie Moore also 7th in her age group with a time of 2.16.44. Alison Parkinson was 8th F50 in a time of 2.26.34. Teamwork came into play with a lot of our runners crossing the line in quick succession. Anneke Crosby 2.35.55, Anees Shaikh 2.36.25, Esther Stanier 2.37.39, Emily Ingham 2.40.21, Leanne Finch 2.40.22, Sarah Runcie 2.44.24. Kelly Day finished in 2.56.08 followed by Ruth Watkinson in 3.19.52. Another supportive group consisted of Judi Ingham 3.28.17, Hannah Clayton 3.28.19, Carol Heaton 3.28.19 and Carole Williams 3.32.08.

The Rivington Trail Half Marathon is an excellent, challenging event and after a significant amount of rain in the days prior to the race, runners were tested in wet and slippery conditions. Mark Willett justified his decision to enter by leading Red Rose home in 1.52.31 followed by Jon Royle in 1.54.57. Cat Holden finished in 2.38.27 and Steve Bullows 3.03.15.

Phil Marsden ran the Rochdale Half Marathon. He finished in 7th place overall, was 1st Vet 45 and ran it in an amazing time of 1.18.

The Knowsley 10 mile race encourages fancy dress and good fun. The Red Rose team was quite at home. Tim Nuttall 1.18.26, Pauline Moorcroft 1.21.00, Sam Edwards 1.21.06, David Hindle 1.27.23, Peter O’Grady 1.28.10, Zoe Cain 1.36.21, Katy Cleece 1.36.24, Ros Crompton 1.36.26, Marion O’Grady 1.40.11.

Three Towers Ultra Trail Race is billed as a 37 mile route which takes in some of the most stunning views the West Pennine moors has to offer as well as taking in all 3 towers, Rivington, Jubilee and Peel Towers. We had two Red Rose runners competing in this gruelling event. Gary Corcoran ran brilliantly and clocked 44.9miles in 11 hours 20 minutes, finishing in 34th place. In spite of a frustrating season of injuries, Ruth Travis ran a fantastic time of 12 hours 29 minutes, to be 3rd lady, ably supported by Debbie Porter and Ian Wharton who provided morale boosting support throughout the day.

Red Rose provided official support at this race, manning check points. Without the generous support and time offered by marshalls these events would never take place. Well done Lynn Melvin, Wendy Ward, Pauline Moorcroft, Sarah Eccles, Melanie Lowe, Katy C Saw and Lisa Baron.

At Preston parkrun Alex Cadogan ran a PB time of 28.35.