Press Report: 16th – 31st December 2023

by | Jan 2, 2024 | Press Reports

Photo: Members taking part in the QRC Rudolph Romp, the last club run of the year (Photo shared by Diane L)

Despite the Winter weather making it difficult to travel and run with races postponed or cancelled, Quakers have managed to take part in races up to Half Marathon distance and lots to celebrate.

16th December: parkruns – Darlington South Park & Jubilee (Spennymoor)

He’s only gone and done it again! Congratulations to Isaac Johnson Caddell who bagged himself another PB of 20:48, chipping off another 23 seconds at Darlington South Park. Diane Lockhart finished in 24:59, shaving off 50 seconds from last month to achieve her 7th PB this year! Meanwhile, Phil Thornberry also bagged himself a new PB, knocking 1 minute and 13 seconds off his previous from November 2019, finishing in 27:16 and Zoe Robinson also achieved her 7th PB this year, shaving 50 seconds off her previous PB from last month, finishing in 31:03.

At Jubilee parkrun, April Corbett and Sandara Cass were 2nd and 3rd lady finishers, completing the course in 26:42 and 26:52 respectively.

17th December: McTaggart Trot

This year the Annual Festive McTaggart Trot had a new format and a new course. Starting at Eppleby Village Hall, teams of 3 completed the 5k lapped course with all 3 runners running the first leg together, then 2 runners running the 2nd leg and one final runner completed the final leg. This event is all about the spirit of Christmas and giving back to those who need it most, with £2449.52 of much needed funds raised for St Teresa’s Hospice in Darlington.

Shaune Eland (25:14), Rebecca Howard (21:49) and David Aiken (20:01) were the only team that had 3 QRC members and finished in 6th place overall out of 61 teams in 1:07.

1st leg runners included Ian Burgess (25:15), Sue Woodcock (27:36) and Lin Gossage (43:42).

1st and 2nd leg runners included Hayley Addison (25:56), Jeff Marriott (29:45), Julie Whinn (30:28) and Jan Waite (1:30). (2nd leg 5k times)

1st, 2nd and 3rd leg runners included Marc Ellis (18:19), David Nalder (26:15), Chris Evans (26:06), Lou Trainor (25:18), Wendy Colling (28:06) and Helen Spaven (29:25). (3rd leg 5k times)

17th December: Loftus Poultry Run

This race is mostly road with a couple of short cross country sections. The Poultry Run has been held nearly every year (except for lockdown years) for over 38 years and is a friendly fun event for all abilities yet also attracts some of the top athletes in the region. The prizes are legendary – consisting of generous Christmas hampers and a large number of prizes of poultry for the Christmas table!

David Porterfield competed the race in 1:30.

23rd December: parkruns – Darlington South Park, Albert (Middlesbrough), Hartlepool, Wynyard Woodland & Thorp Perrow

At Darlington South Park, Michael Joyeux was 3rd finisher (and 3rd male) in 17:07 and Marc Ellis was 9th finisher in 18:12. Phil Thornberry bagged himself a new PB, shaving another 23 seconds off his previous PB from last week and Steve McGourty trimmed 30 seconds off his previous PB from September 23, finishing in 29:36.

Over at Albert parkrun, Sue Sparrow celebrated her 100th parkrun milestone, completing the route in 26:57. Meanwhile, at Hartlepool, Dawn Richardson finished in 10th place overall and was 2nd lady, in 20:00; at Wynyard Woodland, Isaac Johnson Caddell finished in 7th place overall (and 7th male) in 21:04 and at Thorp Perrow, David Aiken finished in 10th place overall (and 10th male) in 21:16.

23rd December: Christmas Fun Run (Darlington Trail Races) 5k

Postponed from 10th December, this 5k race took part at Riverside Way, Darlington. All runners received a selection box and medal and there were also lots of spot prizes, so worth dressing up. There are no results for this event; well done to those who took part.

25th December: parkrun – Darlington South Park

At Darlington South Park Marc Ellis was 3rd finisher (and 3rd male) in 17:47. David Aiken bagged himself a new PB of 18:58, shaving 6 seconds off his previous PB from October 2018 and Peter Cowan knocked 29 seconds off his time in April this year, to achieve a new PB of 26:25. Dawn Richardson was 3rd lady finisher (20:10) and Adam Charles achieved his 25th parkrun milestone in 22:41.

26th December: Whitley Bay Boxing Day Pudding Run

Now in its 37th year, the Boxing Day Pudding Run is a North East tradition, attracting thousands of runners to Whitley Bay every year to run off the Christmas excess with a seafront run suitable for all abilities. The Pudding Run is 5k (3.1 miles) and runners, young and old, are encouraged to dress in their festive finest. Each finisher is invited to take home a Christmas Pudding. Funds raised is split between North Shields Poly, Woodlawn and Mountain Rescue.

There are no results for this event; well done to members that  took part.

30th December: parkrun – Sedgefield

At Sedgefield, Jan Waite celebrated her 20th parkrun milestone, finishing the course in 45:52.

Staplehurst End of Year 10 miler

Set amidst the beautiful Kent countryside and taking place mainly on quiet roads around Staplehurst, the route is predominately flat with a large hill at 6 miles large hill before 3 miles downhill!

David Aiken celebrated a 10 mile PB, finishing the race in 1:09 and shaving off a massive 8 minutes from November 2018, whilst Rebecca Howard was 3rd lady in 1:12.

31st December: Jolly Holly Jog 10K

The race follows a scenic, multi-terrain course of approximately 10k. It is an undulating route mainly on footpaths through parkland. The race starts on Hell Wath Nature Reserve, goes up Whitcliffe Lane onto public footpaths through Mackershaw Woods and through Studley Deer Park. The course then goes out of the main gate at Fountains Abbey, right, up Plumpton Lane, and returns via a short steep climb in Mackershaw Woods, across to Whitcliffe Lane and back towards Hell Wath Nature Reserve. Following a short section through the woods at Hell Wath, the course then emerges onto the field back to the finish.

Lou Trainor was first Quaker home in 51:47, followed by Brian Martin (56:42), Sue Sparrow (59:19), Sandra Cass (1:00), Wendy Colling (1:00), Julie Whinn (1:06), Sandra Martin (1:07), Rachel Grayson (1:11) and Mark Colling (1:12).

31st December: Newcastle Town Moor Marathon and Half

This annual full and half marathon takes place on Newcastle Town Moor. This is a race for those who don’t mind multi-lap runs, it is on good footpaths around the historic Exhibition Park and Town Moor.

Rob Gillham finished the half-marathon race in 1:34, 2nd in age category and bagging himself a new PB, shaving a fabulous 2 minutes off his previous PB from September 2014.

Special mentions

Congratulations to Rob Gillham who was presented with the parkrun Volunteer of the Year award at Darlington South Park on 23rd December.

Rob generally takes on the roles of Event Day Course Checker., which involves checking the entire route is safe, as well as Pre-Event Set Up, which includes the placement of equipment around the course, setting up the start/finish area and finish funnel and placing signs/comes to indicate the route.

Thank you Rob, without volunteers like you, parkrun could simply not go ahead and it is brilliant for you to be recognised.