Woodbank parkrun – 18 December 2010

Mid December found Sharon and I visiting her family in Leek, Staffordshire.  As our visit included a Saturday then we had to consider a local parkrun – of which the two nearest are Bramhall and Woodbank, close to Stockport.

The weather had taken a turn for the worse with some recent snow and from weighing up both events and the likelihood of a last minute cancellation we opted for Woodbank – as they have an alternative 5k route for these kind of conditions.

So, after an early start we headed to Woodbank – found the car park close to the park and saw a growing number of lycra clad runners get out of there cars and head towards the running track.

Well, the location is perfect!  There’s plenty of car parking (if you’re in a car – if it weren’t 30 miles away then I’d rather run/cycle there), then there’s a little club-house to shelter from the cold, and finally toilets literally 15 metres from the start line!

Today (well, the 18th) was the Woodbank pre-Christmas parkrun and almost everyone was wearing a santa hat or similar.  Except Sharon and I who forgot to pack ours when we drove up the day before.  Rest assured we’ll have our hats out on Christmas Day at Bushy parkrun.

Because of the snow a sensible decision was made to run the three lap flat course rather than the regular two lap ‘full’ course.

David - photo: John Paul Kearns

David - photo: John Paul Kearns

After a short briefing the 43 of us headed off onto the first of three laps.  Looking at recent results I should be right up at the sharp end of things so headed off in close pursuit of the two chaps who raced off the front.  One runner opened up a slight lead and in second place was a youngster in a ’10 club’ tee.

About two thirds of the way round the first lap I overtook the second place runner and then had probably a 10 second gap between myself and first place.  The trouble is, I just couldn’t bring the gap down!  The on course support from the marshalls was superb and very encouraging – but clearly every word of “you’re catching him up” to me was preceded a few seconds before by “keep pushing, the tall lanky one in the hundred club t-shirt is getting closer!”

Being a three lap course I lapped a few of the slower runners and we gave one another plenty of support.  Everyone was super friendly.  Must be a northern thing.

In the final km the leader extended his lead and by the finish beat me by 15 seconds.  My time was 19:11.  Considering the conditions (and the fact that my Garmin measured the course at 3.24 miles – however accurate that may be) I was happy with that time, although would have loved the victory!

Sharon - photo: John Paul Kearns

Sharon - photo: John Paul Kearns

At the finish line we were all given a goodie bag – leftovers from the Stockport 10 road race the week before and then ushered into the Stockport Harriers clubhouse for tea/coffee and cakes.

Everyone we spoke to was incredibly friendly, the number of runners was very manageable, the facilities were top-knotch and this event (of the 16 different parkruns that I’ve been to) had a lovely ‘feel’ to it.

Well done Woodbank parkrun.

5 comments on “Woodbank parkrun – 18 December 2010
  1. Wish we had known you were around last weekend, we are only 8 miles from Leek and you would have had to pass us to get to Stockport

  2. David Rowe says:

    Doh. I don’t know where half the ‘pirates’ live!! That’s a shame. Next time we’re up we’ll do one of the other parkruns and either drag you around or pop in for a cuppa.

  3. Emma Copson says:

    Funkin there is a pirate map on the psof site next time you’re on your travels

  4. Simon Finch says:

    Leek? I used to live in Leek and also in Cheddleton… Bugger, missed the chance to chew the fat about those places, it’ll have to wait until I see you next.

  5. Jon-Paul Kearns says:

    very glad you enjoyed your run at woodbank I remember that day very well and I am very happy that you have used the photo’s I took

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