Towneley Park 10k 2014 & The Rest of the Weekend’s Action

ByChristopher Holdsworth

Towneley Park 10k 2014 & The Rest of the Weekend’s Action

Towneley Park 10k 2014

‘My decision to pace myself paid off as I knew that the small climb out towards Todmorden road was just the start. Upping my pace and trying not to lose my place within the pack I carelessly plodded along until it dawned on me what was coming next…’

A brief Introduction…

As one of Clayton’s newest recruits, I thought I’d give a little bit of a background story about myself and how I (Jacob Watson) became a member of this legendary running club.

Like all runners who positioned themselves at the top of the Avenue in Towneley Park, my journey to the start line didn’t begin on the morning of the 27th of July. Mine started back in 2012 after a rather self-indulgent Holiday in America, when I realised that I’d inadvertently put on a few pounds. To remedy this I decided to make a change to my lifestyle and took up what I called ‘jogging’. Like most new runners I could barely run to the end of the street, however within a few weeks I was jogging up to 3 miles every few days.

2013 came about and at the end of July I signed up to my first parkrun. That was it, I was hooked! I’d noticed a few white and orange vest during my first few runs but didn’t think much of it at the time (other than noticing that they seemed to be winning a lot!)

2014 saw a few personal bests at Parkrun and I started paying more attention to these white and orange vests, so much so that in April I took the decision to join in on one of John Roche’s speed sessions. “Why didn’t I do this ages ago” I thought to myself! The experience was the polar opposite of the lonely evening runs I’d been doing and I was starting to enjoy running more than ever.

Months passed and after a few more club training sessions I took the plunge, filled in the application form, bought the club vest and I haven’t looked back! In my short time with the club I’ve met some great runners who have given me sterling advice. I’ve pushed myself much harder than I would have done running by myself and I’ve seen some huge improvements. Most importantly though is the fact that running has gone from something I’d do every few days to stay in shape and turned into something I genuinely enjoy and look forward too.

Race day!


Courtesy of Steve Bateson Photography

Fast forward to the present day and I’m stood in Towneley Park at the top of the Avenue waiting for the race to get underway. John Roche was on hand to give some words of advice about the changes to the route before handing over to the race starter. “Ready…. Go” and we were off! The temptation to go full pelt down towards the crossroads at the bottom of the hill was there, however I took the decision to hold back as I had an idea of some of the climbs to come. The downhill stretch from the Avenue was short-lived as we turned left and ran back up towards Towneley Hall followed by a right after Stables Café. My decision to pace myself paid off as I knew that the small climb out towards Todmorden road was just the start. Upping my pace and trying not to lose my place within the pack I carelessly plodded along until it dawned on me what was coming next.


Courtesy of Steve Bateson Photography

Turning left onto Mount Lane I thought to myself “This is a lot steeper than I remember”. A few words of encouragement from Kevin Davies gave me the motivation I would need to get myself up to the top. I knew it was a relatively long and steep climb, but I also knew it was pretty much all downhill from the top. The climb seemed to go on forever and my energy was waning as we turned left for the final part of the hill. Some of the runners I’d tried to keep pace with had left me for dust but I knew what was coming next. picture-22

Courtesy of Steve Bateson Photography

The final two miles were certainly the fastest and I was glad to have paced myself during the beginning of the run. I caught back up with the pack as we turned left off Red Lees road and back towards Towneley Park. Next was a much needed descent down past the golf course and towards the crossroads at the bottom of the Avenue. picture-82

Courtesy of Steve Bateson Photography

This felt good but I knew there was one last (relatively small) climb before the end. We turned off to the right at the crossroads and then back up to the final hill and I knew I had enough energy left in the tank to put in a good finish. We ran back down towards the crossroads one last time, turned right and the finish line was in sight! A few cheers from the crowd gave me the extra push I needed to put it all in and cross the line. I checked my Garmin and while it wasn’t my fastest time, I couldn’t have cared. I knew I’d ran well and most of all I enjoyed the experience. Towenely Park 10k will definitely be on my race calendar for 2015! picture-98

Courtesy of Steve Bateson Photography

Race results

Jonny McKenna was first Clayton vest over the line (and second overall) with a very impressive time of 34:52, followed by Christopher Holdsworth who managed to creep in at sub 36 with 35:59 to take 3rd. Jordan McDonald continues to shine after being first Clayton at Todmorden 5k on Thursday. He ran a very impressive time as first junior in 37:57. Well done Jordan! 10509688_10204634966658203_7103130242072695352_n

Courtesy of Breton Holdsworth

Phil Hall managed an exceptional time of 38:15 as first M50 and Stephen Biscomb continues to impress as first in the M60 category with a fantastic time of 42:28. 10422544_10204634966058188_747061005862558457_n

Courtesy of Breton Holdsworth

Irene Roche claimed first finisher in the F55 category with a superb time of 47:41 and David Scott grabbed first M70 with a seriously quick 48:15. David was followed by Dawn Terry, who claimed first in the F50 category with a speedy 48:19, closely followed by Ted Orrel who bagged a fantastic time as first M75 with 51:50. Marion Wilkinson was first in the F70 category with a great time of 58:55. Good efforts all round! Clayton-le-Moors Harriers Results in Full:

Pos Name Category Time
2 Jonny McKenna M 34:52
3 Chris. Holdsworth M 35:59
6 Breton Holdsworth M 36:47
7 Jordan McDonald MJ 37:57
10 Phil Hall M50 38:15
13 Paul Hesketh M45 38:52
16 Paul Brannon M55 38:55
18 Jacob Watson M 39:04
20 Dave Motley M 39:23
25 Roger Brewster M55 39:59
30 Russ Clarke M 40:54
31 Carl Helliwell M 41:03
34 Richard Briscoe M 41:34
43 Stephen Biscomb M60 42:28
48 Kenan Eti MJ 43:02
53 Alan Clarkson M55 43:34
57 Andy Bradley M45 44:15
59 Andy Quinn M40 44:47
67 Gordon Barrett M50 45:35
71 Peter Browning M55 46:48
79 Irene Roche F55 47:41
85 David I Scott M70 48:15
86 Dawn Terry F50 48:19
90 Brian Wildman M45 48:37
99 Martin Griffin M50 49:32
102 Julia Rushton F50 50:01
103 Lee Moore M 50:05
109 Jean Knightley F55 51:09
110 Tanya Bunkham F 51:19
112 Ted Orrell M75 51:50
117 Jackie Kershaw F40 53:33
119 Richard Lawson M70 53:43
121 Rachel Todd F40 53:54
123 Ron Chappell M65 55:17
125 Sarah Helliwell F 55:29
129 Stuart Barker M45 56:23
132 Robert Hirst M60 57:28
133 Marion Wilkinson F70 58:55
134 Michelle Butschok F40 58:59
141 Andrew Brewster M50 1:03:13
142 Christine Leathley F65 1:04:14
145 Jack McGuire M55 1:07:47

Thanks to Jacob Watson for the race report! Full results found here.

The Rest of the Weekend’s Action

With the race at Towneley being a Road Championship Race, as well as a Grand Prix race, this section will be slightly shorter than usual. That being said, we have a few exciting results to share! Clayton-le-Moors Harriers running couple, Nicholas and Adrienne Olszewski, took on the Lakeland 50, whilst Andrew Armstrong went a step further and tackled the Lakeland 100The three lunatics all had fantastic outings. Nicholas finished just over the 12 hour mark in 12:03:24 and was also the 1st M54. Adrienne was able to keep going for a consecutive 16:13:51 hours. What an amazing effort from the Olszewski’s! 10579984_10152255705564327_6024285707951872856_n

Courtesy of Nicholas Olszewski

In the 100 mile race, Andy Armstrong finished as the 4th man in the M45 category. His race lasted a whopping 32:32:29! Completing 100 miles in a week is quite the accomplishment, so for Andy to do it over the course of this weekend is one of the hardest feats out there! Well done all three of you!!

Our club seems to spawn the most resilient and faithful fell runners of all the clubs competing today. When the speedsters are done racing 10k’s, when the dreamers are done climbing miles of arduous mountains; there will always be the reliable few who come out of the woodwork to compete at our local fell races. Two of those are Ivan Whigham and Andrew Robinson, who ran at this years Turnslack Fell Race 2014Andrew narrowly outran his fellow club member, finishing in 01:29:26, whereas Ivan finished in 01:30:00 exactly. Most importantly however, both men were able to take 1st prize in their respective age categories of V50 an V60. Great effort men!!

There, I think that’s enough padding for one weekend! Don’t forget to check out our training section, and come and join in!


About the author

Christopher Holdsworth