What a fantastic year it has been for Wigan Harriers. We have wintessed stunning successes on the track to some monumental achievements amongst us distance athletes on the Endurance wing. All this against the background of ever expanding numbers at our regular Tuesday and Thursday Training sessions with new faces every week. Even our coaching team has grown with more members achieving UKA qaulifications over the year.
The start of the year saw club success in the cross country with promotion in the Mid Lancs league for the second year in succession, and things looking promising in this years camapign also. Our now traditional jaunt to Wrexham for the Half Marathon in February saw a huge turnout and a glut of PB results despite some of us so busy chatting we missed the start! Its not too late to get an entry in for this years Wrexham Half for anyone who fancies a fast, flat PB course in the company of, at last count, about 20 fellow Harriers!
Spring Marathon season saw some incredible personal achievements from runners at Blackpool, Manchester and London with PBs tumbling and even the odd runner smashing that magic 3 hour barrier.
May saw us sending two full strength teams to Sutton Park in Birmingham for the National Masters Relay Championships with some superb performances earning us respectability. Shortly afterwards we were hosting our very own Amberswood Trail 10k. Months of hard work and preparation paid off on a glorious June day as the vent entered its 3rd year. Clubs from across the North West came together with a healthy contingent of unnattached runners to create a cracking atmosphere around our popular off road course.
The club turned out in force once again at Grasmere in June in what is quickly becoming a traditional day out. We had 10 runners in both the 10k and 15k events who endured scorching temperatures on the day. All our athletes earned the copious liquid refreshments which they enjoyed long into the evening!
A hard core of runners ran for the club throughout the summer series events from Astley Park to Choley to Harrock Hill. The club was well represented in all the highly competitive local series with some healthy rivalries pushing on the performances over the summer.
It was back to Cumbria in June and July with runners taking on the challenging Consiston Mararthon and two of our number taking full advntage of the medical facilities afterwards! Several of our number then took on the gruelling Lakeland 50 ultra marathon with 6 club members crossing the line at the end of an epic day out on the fells. Gary Wane, Tracey Dutton, Andy Kaufman and Graham Millington went on to stretch the endurance theme with further ultra runs later in the year.
As Autumn approached it was time for another crack at the magic 26.2 with Harriers racing at Chester and Abingdon marathons. Pat and Pauline did us proud in Chester whilst a large contingent headed south to break a few ducks, PBs and hearts at Abingdon.
Harriers runners represented the club at a multitude of events throughout the year from blistering 10k road runs, hard core fell races, speedy 5ks, ridiculous mud spattered obstacle races, off road trail runs, short sharp track races and preposterous ultra marathons. Wherever and when ever we competed we wore the vest with pride and represented our club with honour. A huge well done to everyone who pulled on club colours this year and put the name “Wigan Harriers” on the results sheets of races across he country.
The ever increasing numbers turning out to train are a huge encouragement to everyone who worked so hard to get the Endurance Group up and running. If anyone still hasnt completed their membership form and written out that cheque, make sure to add “Harriers Membership” to your late list for Santa and get your applications in before January!
Happy Christmas Harriers and heres to another year of growth and success in 2014