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  • Jo Houghton

Terry Nortley 10 mile

By Jacinta Yates

Who needs mediterranean views of a stormy gale (the cancelled Malta marathon) when you can have a run in Provence, aka Radcliffe’s Hurst Woods. And whilst Liz and Stu ran in the Oulton mist, the Radcliffe sun god was truly shining on us.

We huddled at the start, not to keep warm but to get to the start line, whilst Vince from RAC who certainly didn’t need a megaphone tried to round us up. I could feel the nerves and excitement getting the better of me. Although this is my favourite club race I started to remember those little hills, lots of them!

We were off ! Charging down the bumpy lane I was thankful to get to the bottom on two legs. As we ran into the cover of the trees it felt like a Sunday marathon training run but without the banter and chat. No time for chatting today I was desperate to get a pb from 2 years previous. I reckoned that if I could see the number 9 rather than 10 on my watch I had it in the bag. I had forgotten about the amount of hills and soon realised that a pb may be harder to bag than I thought.

There was another female runner without a club vest with a similar pace to mine. Unlike me she seemed well chilled ! She looked like she had popped out for a Sunday tootle listening to her tunes with Audrey Hepburn style shades. We seemed to be chasing each other and at every hill I managed to overtake. As soon as we were on the declines she threw herself down each one overtaking me. The camaraderie was fantastic then at one point she seemed to fall behind. After a while she appeared again overtaking me. ‘I wondered where you had gone !’ I said to her, relieved in a funny way that she was back and the chase once again was on.

We approached the bridge near Asda, Bernie reckoned he was there supporting but I think the temptation of the Asda running gear aisle proved too much as I didn’t spot him.

The rest of PAC had made camp in Hurst Wood with deck chairs and Jenn’s hostess trolley. It was such a boost to see Linzi, Adrian, Gareth, Linda, Chris, Jenn, Jo Linda, Liz H, Vicky, Stu, Suzanne, Nigel and Alison en route. News just in, Rob T has finally escaped from his darkroom after airbrushing about 10 million PAC pics.

I really enjoyed the race and always appreciate the beautiful off road we have on our doorstep. RAC as always did a fantastic job as hosts and superb marshalling.

As I ran I tried to remember some of the words of wisdom and support from fellow PAC pals. Gillian’s voice in my head telling me to keep my head up on the hills and Liz’s telling me to stride out on the flat bits. As I approached the last few miles my legs had become tired and felt heavy. Another little voice was saying ‘come on Jasprinter you can do it! ’ but I soon realised it was not in my head it was Angela! I kept going but knew she could easily overtake. Angela being Angela refused and instead encouraged me to keep going. It felt  amazing to have such support and Angela has always encouraged me to do better. There are lots of other PAC members who have also helped me for many reasons, encouraging me to get a pb or just dragging me out for an early morning run on a cold winter morning.

Prestwich AC’s ethos is always about supporting people and being inclusive to all levels. It is not always about the winning. However today it was also about the winning ! I won the V45  prize. I was a little bit chuffed to say the least ! Our PAC Super Steph also bagged the V65 prize!

The last time I won a running prize was for 3 legged at primary school which funny enough was with Katie Geelan which must have helped! I reckon next time with PAC teamwork we could all get some cracking pb’s doing the Terry Nortley 3 legged.


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