Congratulations to Simon Lynch & Dean Pepperell who were the lucky recipients of the clubs guaranteed 2019 London Marathon entries. Thank you to everyone put their names into the hat. We wish Simon & Dean well in their winter & spring training for the 2019 VLM. 

The Norman Woodcock Relays (High Gosforth Race Course & Park) are almost upon us and the event needs volunteers to make the day a successful one.

As a guide as to when event helpers need to be at the race venue (Parklands Golf Course Club House) folks need to be there for:

Car Park Marshals. Be ready with ‘bib on’ and in the car park for 11.10 am until 12.45 pm.

Course set-up: To signpost the course, assemble tent, flags & cones etc. Ready to ‘go’ from the club house at 11 am until all complete (around an hour). 

Course Marshals. Be at HQ for a briefing at 12.15 pm. Race starts at 1 pm. Last runners through just before 2 pm.

We would politely ask you to help dismantle club equipment and take back to HQ (From 1.50 pm to 2.15 pm. More hands make light work – You can never have enough helpers 🙂  )

Enclosed is a GUIDE as to what help is required > HELP LIST.Names please to the notice board help list or the club’s FB page. Thank you in advance of your help.

Mallorca Long Course Weekend

Race report by Elswick’s Iain Hardy. Enjoy the 3 day read. What is it? A 3 day full distance triathlon. 3.8 km swim. 172 km bike. 42.2 km run. I flew out on Wednesday 24th October for a week. Graham (GB) was forced to withdraw with a persistent back issue, as he put it: ‘Not fit or healthy enough to take part in a big distance event’. Thankfully he came out still, to support and have a bit of a holiday. Seven days to prepare, compete and relax, post-race. Arriving in Pollenca, we soaked up the 27’C sunshine. Thursday. Bike shake down. Hired bikes were tested around Alcudia and the 1500 feet climb towards the monastery at Lluc (part of the Ironman 70.3 bike route). Temperatures were the same as Wednesday. A few miles on a steep climb too many? (45 ish) Enjoyable, apart from GB insisting on stopping on the descent for a back drop photo!

Friday. Wet Suit test swim in the bay of Alcudia. Calm salty water, sunny conditions again. I was pleased to get the test in (good to have GB alongside) as it really settled the nerves (GB needs a new wet suit?). Afterwards, a walk to collect my race event package, no’s, chip, rules & regs. I also received the full distance Athlete t-Shirt. I buy a few other things (and a t-shirt for chef GB). A lazy day follows, ready for the race day swim.

Saturday. Race Day. 3.8 km swim. The weather has turned. Cool and overcast for the start. 400 athletes on the start line. Two laps with an Australian swim exit onto the beach for lap one and then into the sea again to start lap two. Fanfare. Music. Tension. Countdown……………………….

Gold Caps are the Full distance triathletes.

Hooter! My swim is a GO, and I’m off. A steady start for me finding my own space and try to settle down, get the breathing right. After 35 mins I’m out and into the beach funnel lane. I stop for a swig off water (provided by Domestique GB) and then I’m off again on the second lap. 35 mins later I return and run off the beach for a 50 m sprint for the finish line. Swim done in 70 mins. The first of the medals is awarded. A bronze medal that will interlock with (hopefully) the other disciplines that follow. I’m very pleased with that. The weather worsens and starts to rain as we enjoy a post-race coffee, beach-side.The rest of the day is spent relaxing in prep for the bike ride. More rain deluges follow……..

50 m to go and a 70 min swim time.
Swim medal. Medal number 1. One down. 3 to go…………


Sunday. The Bike Leg. All 172 km of it. The weather is cool at 11’C, blustery and showery for the 8 am start. Continue reading Mallorca Long Course Weekend


Thank you to everyone who came along to the AGM last night. The club is ending 2018 in a strong position both financially and in the growing number of our members. As you may already be aware Tom Hanson, Peter Sloan, Rob Wilson and myself have all stood down from our roles within the committee. Tom will continue, along with myself, to coach the senior group and continue the growth of our number of members. I’d like to thank Tom, Peter and Rob for the many years of invaluable service they have given the club in their respective roles. Due to their knowledge and experience the club is about to enter its 130th year in a strong and healthy position.

I’d like to wish our new club Chair, Harry Matthews, and the rest of the newly formed committee best wishes for the coming years


NEHL Junior Report Gosforth Park

The third NEHL took place at a cold and blustery Gosforth Park it could have been much worse. A thank you to Gosforth/Heaton and Tyne-bridge harriers for setting up the course in awful conditions.
The Elswick juniors results are as follows –

U/11 Boys 8th Jake Stroud 5.45 – 31st Ethan Housego 6.21.
U/11 Girls 1st Poppy Wilde 5.30 – 15th Louisa Hamilton 6.25 – 25th Sydney Bungay 6.42 – 30th Lola wood 6.49 – 31st Jessica Robinson 6.49 – 33rd Hannah Waterhouse 6.52 – 41st Evie Reed 7.38 – 50th Keira Bairstow 8.09.
U/13 Boys 13th Adam Robinson 14.20 – 25th William Butterworth 13.10 – (fast pack) 34th Jake Robertson 13.48(fast pack)  53rd Elliot Kelso 15.41 – 55th Charles Mason 14.03(fast pack) 58th Henry Young 14.14(fast pack) 59th Bailey Shore 16.03. 5th Team.
U/13 Girls 16th Caitlin Flanagan 13.55(fast pack) 20th Lucy Milburn 14.13 (fast pack) 35th Imogen Bungay 14.38 (fast pack) 42nd Katy Bullock 16.44 –  49th Sophie Henderson 15.19 (fast pack)  51st Lauren Stroud 15.27(fast pack) 67th Jayden Morton 20.31.5th Team.
U/15 Boys 17th Kieran Dixon 13.52 – 20th Zac Old 12.00 (fast pack) 50th Will Brown 17.49 – 52nd Connor Shore 19.37 6th Team.
U/15 Girls 34th Aimee Bairstow 15.57- 41st Charley Lee 14.38(fast pack) 45th Grace Ogilvie 16.49. 10th Team.
U/17 Boys 33rd Chris Mason (fast pack)
U/17/20 Girls 6th Suzannah Fielding 19.39 (medium pack) 15th Hannah Tumia 20.07(medium pack) 27th Kerry-Anne Simpson 22.46 – 38th Marissa O’Rourke 25.35. 5th Team.

Great to see so many turning out well done to everyone. Next NEHL is 17th November Aykley Heads hope to see as many out as possible as the club championships are all up for grabs.
Thank you to Rob Wilson who kindly brought the club tent.
Cheers Jan&ken

2019 London Marathon

We have 2 club entries for next years London Marathon. If you have a rejection letter or email from the ballot then please forward it to Steven Robertson or Tom Hanson asap if you wish to be entered into a draw.

Gillian’s England marathon debut

Gillian Allen, now based in Germany, made her England Masters debut at the Chester Marathon earlier this month. She’s kindly written a report about her England experience which you can read below. There are photo’s too but heads keep being chopped off when I try to upload them! Hopefully they’ll be added shortly by someone more skilled than myself!!  Well done again Gillian and thank you for a great report!




Chester Marathon

England v Celtic Nations Masters Age Group Marathon

Sunday 7th October 2018



The 2018 MBNA Chester Marathon played host to the second ever England Athletics Age Group Team, as masters runners from a wide variety of clubs across the country grasped the opportunity to represent their country with distinction.The Age Group Team once again took on a Celtic Nations line up in a challenge match, with England team members having qualified thanks to their performances at qualifying races over the past year (taken from the England Athletics website).

In April of this year I ran the Brighton Marathon, which was a selection race for the England Masters team. I was over the moon to qualify and earn my first ever England vest, having been a lifelong runner (I joined Elswick harriers in 1986 when I was nine years old, thanks to Anne Blight).

Unfortunately, I only found out about my selection to represent England days after I heard of the passing of my childhood coach, Mike Avery. I was gutted, really gutted, as I know he would have been so proud of me. He gave me, and others, so much of his time and patience when we were younger and became like a second father figure to me. I’m so pleased that I managed to see Mike in recent years and that he met my husband and kids on a few occasions, as I’d always wanted them to meet him.

Training for a marathon is tough at the best of times, but with the added stress of moving to Germany in the summer, a new job and two young children, this was a particularly challenging period for me. However, I often thought of Mike during these times and knew that I just had to get on with it and be the best that I could be on the day. The landscape for training in our new home city, Leipzig, was better than I’d hoped for, albeit a bit flat, and so Sunday morning long runs were reasonably successful despite the training time lost to moving house and enduring ten days without a kitchen on arrival (it’s a German thing, don’t ask!). The weeks of 30 – 38 degree temperatures were also a struggle and a lot of my normal key sessions were drastically reduced or aborted as I just couldn’t hit the paces I’ve come to expect, or I just felt dreadful.

However, one huge plus of our new location over our old (Belgium’s Waterloo) was a weekly Parkrun. Kuchenholz parkrun is a must for any parkrun tourists reading this (get in touch if you fancy visiting!). I knew that I was starting to close in on some match fitness when I clocked back-to-back times under 18.40 for this 5km weekly jaunt. And so Chester beckoned…

I was unusually excited for this marathon, which is strange as I’m usually a bag of nerves, but I felt pretty strong and my last few weeks of training had gone well and something just clicked into place. I was so determined to enjoy myself for a number of reasons. I had a lot of family coming to watch me and I wanted to be a good role model for my own kids and my nieces, whatever the result. Putting on the England vest on the morning of the race was both thrilling and nerve-racking. I was so grateful to have this opportunity at the grand old age of 42. Age really is just a number – I honestly believe I’m fitter than ever before since I reached my 40s.

The morning of the race was a real shock to the system as there was ice on the car windscreen and we were in a panic as to how to de-ice our rented car! My teeth were actually chattering on the start line as it was so cold. However, I still felt incredibly relaxed despite all the nervous athletes around me and I received the best good luck hugs and kisses from my kids and husband before the start. I was so determined to make them proud of me. As soon as the race began, I felt good, and as a beautiful morning unfolded, I felt comfortable hitting my splits and feeling as strong and comfortable as I ever had. I was really holding myself back and using my practised mantras in the first half telling myself over and over to be patient, which wasn’t easy as runners were streaming past me. I smiled back at the crowds and thanked the volunteers and settled into the race. It was a relief to get to half way as this is when I could start running more freely. They say the real marathon starts at mile 20 and this is so true for me as it’s when you have to start digging deep and, unfortunately, you start seeing people falling to the side, cramping up and dropping out. “Be relentless” was now playing over and over in my mind and I focused on passing as many people as I could. I caught up and over-took many male and female athletes in the last four miles. The last mile was tough but without sounding cheesy, I thought of Mike. Mike used to tell me about my dodgy left elbow and I have an image etched in my memory of him standing watching me during a track session at Lightfoot stadium, when I was approximately 14 years old, yelling “Elbows, Korky, elbows!” It still makes me smile as he is the only one who ever called me “Korky” and I still have a dodgy arm action when I run! I thought of this and it took my mind off the pain and as I rounded the corner of Chester race course I heard my Dad first (who is possibly my number one fan) and then I heard and saw the rest of my family holding up a banner that my Mum had had made as a surprise, which made me smile. I not only felt great but knew a huge PB beckoned. I ran down the home straight smiling the whole way, and my 3 hours, 3 minutes and 27 seconds was only bettered by the fact that I didn’t collapse in a heap at the end, but instead could talk, laugh and enjoy every moment. Oh, and I achieved the holy ‘marathon running’ grail of running a negative split! I finished 16th female overall and sixth in my age group, which I was pretty pleased with as there are some swift ladies out there.

For anyone thinking of doing the Chester Marathon I can thoroughly recommend it. The organisation is superb and the organisers are so friendly and supportive. The goody bag at the end is the best I’ve ever received (although anything beats the junior hacksaw that I once received at the end of a race in Belgium). The course itself it very scenic and takes you into Wales, but be warned that the second half is very undulating!