French takes third round of Winter Series races

Blyth Running Club recently held the third round of their Winter Series five-handicap races around a 2.5 mile course on the Riverside trading estate.

The weather was quite mild for the first runners off, but a steady drizzle became quite heavy by the time the final runner set off.

Joanne Stobbart was the first runner set away and was in the lead for over two miles but was eventually passed by Steven French 600 metres from the finish and he went on to have a clear win while Stobbart held on for second place, over a minute behind.

Stobbart finished six seconds in front of a fast finishing Brad Clough in third.

Clough had the satisfaction of setting the joint fastest time on the night with Jake Jansen, while Judith Nutt was the fastest lady.

After that runners came in thick and fast with 38 finishing within the next minute.

David McGarry, who has shown consistency with times of 18:44, 18:45, 18:45 for the three races, now leads the league table overall on 33 points with Stobbart second on 36 and Andrew Grieves third on 37.

The runners thanked the marshals and timekeepers who stood in the cold and wet and ensured that the event went off smoothly and without whom no race could take place.

Blyth is a well established club and is always on the look-out for new members of all abilities.

Club secretary Ralph Dickinson said: “We have a variety of sessions available from the complete beginner up to seasoned runners.

“We are a very friendly approachable club and would love to see new members at any of our sessions.

“Joining a club like this keeps you fit, you get to socialise and run with friends, which is great.

“We want people of all abilities to come along and join us. We have groups, from beginners to more experienced runners.

“We also have club handicap races so everyone can compete together.

“We meet twice a week and would love to have new members come along. Even if someone hasn’t trained for years, now could be the time to get back involved.”

Club nights are Monday and Wednesday at Blyth Sports Centre at 6.45pm. Alternatively, email or call (01670) 362668.

The club also has a thriving junior section and provides opportunities for young athletes between the ages of eight and 17 years to receive coaching in endurance athletics events and also sprints, throws and jumping events.

All coaching is by qualified UK Athletics coaches who are trained and have been screened for their suitability for working with young people.

Anybody interested can ring Keith on (01670) 362668 for further details.

The club currently run indoor sessions on a Tuesday night at Bede Academy where the aim is to provide young children with a fun and active experience of being part of a sports club.

Children will also have the opportunity to work towards recognised UK:Athletics awards.

Anybody wishing register or wanting more information should call (01670) 362668.