Wednesday, Jun 26 at 6:30 PM - 8:00 PM
Wednesday, Jun 26 at 7:30 PM - 8:30 PM
Thursday, Jun 27 at 7:00 PM - 8:30 PM
Monday, Jul 1 at 7:00 PM - 8:30 PM


29th DECEMBER 2014
SPECIAL OFFER! To mark the imminent start of a year ending in a '5', Royton Road Runners is delighted to offer a once-in-a lifetime deal on these fantastic club car stickers. Bearing highly amusing "Runner on board!" text (guaranteed to make your friends, family & other drivers chuckle!), coming in one size (fits all cars!) & featuring unique stick-o-matic technology (ideal for glass surfaces!), these delightful items normally retail at £1 - but we're offering you the chance to buy TWO for £1.99! So if you're lucky enough to have two cars, or one car with more than one window, or even just a piece of glass that's lacking that certain something, this could be the deal for you! Available from all good David Emanuels. Offer only while stock lasts!  [David Emanuel]

28th DECEMBER 2014

I always like to take the opportunity at this time to provide a round-up of the club’s achievements…a list which seems to get longer every year. I’m sure Bryan Lawton mentioned most of these at the Presentation Night, but for those who weren’t there or missed any of them…with thanks to Brian Moore for some of the more obscure statistics, strap yourself in & feast your eyes on this little lot...

Club membership is now at an all-time high, with more than 170 paid members. There were 925 ‘participations’ in the Club Championship compared to 687 in 2013 (a 35% increase). 138 runners took part in at least one club race (previous record 93). The record of most RRRs in a race (56 at the Royton Trail in 2011 & 2012) was beaten on 10 occasions this year; the record now stands at 85, set at this year’s Royton Trail. The 276 finishers was an overall record for our race too. Until this year only four runners in the club’s history had completed every race in a Club Championship season (the late Ian Casey, John Sweeney - twice - & John Lambe); four more have achieved the feat this year alone (Kirsty White, Nikki Green, June Allingan & Shane Reading). More than 70 marathons were completed by club members, with Steve Shaw reaching his 50th & Chris Eavers now with more than 30 under his belt. Cross country participation has continued to increase - there's a great atmosphere at these races, Gloria the Gazebo is wonderful & we're getting some good team results & great improvements on times from last year, all culminating in Kirsty White’s overall victory in the most recent race at Tandle Hills. We had our first ever attempts at road relays, with men’s & ladies teams doing us proud in the North West Counties event at Stockport & the Northern Athletics competition at a venue in Warrington which was nearly impossible to find. More RRRs than ever took part in the local clubs’ Fell Race Grand Prix, with great results including prizes for Karen Mather, Barry Greaves & Des Thorpe.

Deep breath…the committee changed quite a bit in 2014; not only did June Allingan become First Lady Presidentess but we also welcomed a new Treasurer (Mark Taylor) and Assistant Treasurer (Mary Freer). We appointed our first ever Club Captains in Shane Reading & Kirsty White. With the growing membership, club training nights are really thriving, thanks to the great efforts of our Group Leaders. More people than ever have been coming along to Brian Moore’s excellent track sessions, and Brian has also introduced new Thursday evening hill/interval sessions for those looking to improve their race performances (with an able stand-in recently in Mark Taylor). John Sweeney's 'running technique' sessions on Thursday nights are another welcome addition – maybe a few more members should arrive a little earlier & give this a try! The RunEngland beginner groups go from strength to strength, with plenty progressing through to club membership – a new group starts on Monday 5th January, so make sure you tell your (currently) non-running friends.

Nearly there…participation in the RRR Cup doubled this year, culminating in a thrilling final which was initially reported as a dead heat until the results were corrected to give Jen Bloor a 7-second victory over Joel White. This is just one reflection of our increasing involvement with Oldham parkrun; our 'parkrun day' in June was a great success (there’s another planned for 10th January 2015) & the 'parkrun pacing team' led by Dan Yarwood has done a great job, helping many people to PBs throughout the year.

Surely there can’t be anything else? Well there was another impressively-supported Manchester Marathon Drinks Station, led superbly by Annabella Gloster, which earned a £500 donation to the club from Xtra Mile Events (volunteers for 2015 still very welcome). Annabella also ran an excellent First Aid course for club members (another course is in the pipeline for 2015). The club kit range expanded to include new jackets & shorts. Typically generous group & individual efforts in fundraising for Dr Kershaw's Hospice & many other charities (including raffles at Quiz Night & Presentation Night, June Allingan completing her first triathlon, Stuart Brown running back-to-back marathons at Manchester & London, Karen Stuttard raising more than £1000 for the hospice by running London & many more) means that the final total we've donated to Dr Kershaw's over the last few years is well over £11,000. I’m sure you’ll be just as generous in raising funds for Oldham Mountain Rescue in 2015. And I haven’t even mentioned the ‘friendly rivalry’ between Gary Fielding & Mo Butt which generates so many Facebook posts…

I could go on, but you’ve probably got something far more important to do (like go for a run). All that remains is to thank each & every one of you for your contribution to another fantastic year for Royton Road Runners. I have no doubt that there will be many more unforgettable moments in 2015!  [David Emanuel]

27th DECEMBER 2014

JANTASTIC is back for 2015 & I'm sure any RRRs who signed up this year will vouch for its motivational qualities. Whether you class yourself as a 'sofa surfer', 'occasional exerciser', 'regular exerciser' or 'PB hunter', Jantastic gets you to (publicly) commit to a weekly goal & it's now expanded to allow you to set targets for cycling & swimming as well as running. Click here to sign up - make sure you join the Royton Road Runners Jantastic team!  [David Emanuel]

ANDY O'SULLIVAN is celebrating his 62nd birthday, as well as Sidney Edwards' 80th (that's Diane Modahl's dad), with a 5K race at Brownhouse Wham Reservoir on Saturday 7th February 2015. Full details & an entry form here. Apparently this will be the 588th race that Andy has staged, so it would be good to have a decent RRR turnout to help celebrate his birthday - even if you do just make it an easy jog the day before the Mad Dog 10K!  [David Emanuel]  

24th DECEMBER 2014

NOTHING to do with running, but when has that ever stopped me? Here are 10 top tips to help you make the most of the Christmas holiday:

1. Feeding your cat silver & gold glitter will bring a festive look to your neighbour's back garden.
2. Ensure your child understands the value of debating evolutionary theory by shouting "LIES!" & "PROVE IT!" during their nativity play.
3. Clingfilm makes a perfect substitute for wrapping paper for people who hate surprises.
4. Prepare your children for the inevitable disappointment of adult life by removing all the chocolates from their advent calendar.
5. Stuck for a Boxing Day dessert? A frozen lasagne makes a perfect ‘meat Vienetta’.
6. Fool neighbours into thinking you're struggling with a jigsaw over Christmas by sitting on the sofa & staring at your coffee table for several days.
7. A kitten in a well-sealed box makes an ideal Christmas gift for a young aspiring theoretical physicist.
8. Save money on expensive Christmas mistletoe by being incredibly attractive.
9. Make everything you say seem more festive by adding “Pa rup a pom pom” to every sentence.
10. When driving home for Christmas, always use your Rea view mirror.

Have a fantastic RRR Christmas!  [David Emanuel]

23rd DECEMBER 2014
AS WE ALL make our running plans for 2015, it's time to start collecting names for the RRR Cup competition & for the first club relay event in March. I'd be really grateful if you could visit this page & complete a brief form to confirm your interest in either (or hopefully both) of these events. The form also asks you to share your main running goal for next year!  [David Emanuel]  

O were unfortunate enough to miss the RRR Presentation Night on may already have seen the list of all the prize-winners, but there were a couple of other important announcements too. First, many congratulations to Shane Reading, Fay Royle & Simon Howard who were lucky enough to pick up the three club places for next year's Virgin London Marathon. None of this trio have ever run London before & I'm sure they'll be training hard in the coming months to make the most of the experience. Secondly, the (very narrow) winner of the vote for the RRR Charity of the Year for 2015 was Oldham Mountain Rescue. Since we started selecting a 'club charity' in 2011 this is the first time that Dr Kershaw's Hospice hasn't won the vote & in that time we have through collective & individual fundraising donated more than £10,000. Thanks to all the RRRs who have contributed to that magnificent total - I'm sure we'll see similarly enthusiastic support for Oldham Mountain Rescue next year. We'll be speaking to OMR & sharing some of our plans in the New Year! [David Emanuel]      

22nd DECEMBER 2014
IF YOU followed my earlier instructions & marked the date of the next RRR parkrun day in your 2015 diary, I hope you only wrote it in pencil! By popular demand, due to a clash with a trail race in Wales, we've now moved it to Saturday 10th January 2015. The plan is still (perhaps rather ambitiously?) to make the draw for the early rounds of the RRR Cup in the cafe after the run. More details on how to register your entry for the Cup will follow soon!  [David Emanuel]

MANY CONGRATULATIONS to our very own Stuart Brown on getting himself a place in the Marathon des Sables for 2016 - an event styled as "the toughest footrace on Earth", covering around 156 miles over 6 120 degree heat. I don't think any RRR members have taken part in this race before - but if you have any words of wisdom for Stuart (other than "Don't do it!" or "You must be mad!") I'm sure he'd be delighted to hear from you. Stuart is also looking for suggestions for multi-stage events he can do in 2015 as part of his preparation or (even better) anyone who'd like to join him on such events next year. You can contact Stuart by e-mail.  [David Emanuel]     

13th DECEMBER 2014
DESPITE the icy conditions which put paid to today's parkruns at Oldham & Watergrove, Andy O'Sullivan has been in touch to confirm that the Brownhouse Wham Reservoir 5K on Sunday 14th December is still ON - "there are icy parts but it's clear at the side".  Full details of the race can be found here.  [David Emanuel]

A DATE FOR your new 2015 diary...after the great success of the first RRR parkrun day in June, we're going to be holding another on Saturday 24th January 2015. As well as another outing for the RRR pacing team, this will also be the deadline for entries for the 2015 RRR Cup. The plan is to make the draw for the Preliminary/First Round in the Alexandra Park cafe that morning!  [David Emanuel]       

11th DECEMBER 2014
PRESENTATION NIGHT UPDATE: just a few tickets still available, please contact Bernie Goodwin if you haven't yet got yours! Voting for 'Club Runner of the Year' & 'Charity of the Year' for 2015 has now closed & results will be revealed alongside all the other awards on the night. Just in case anyone was planning to drive to the event, please note that parking at Royton Band Club is very, very limited. Please bring along a raffle prize - all funds raised from the raffle will go to our current charity, Dr Kershaw's Hospice (the committee has come up with a cunning plan to reduce the time it takes to do the raffle from its usual 4 hours). Finally, if you want to be in the ballot for the three club places in the Virgin London Marathon, you need to hand your rejection slip to Brian Moore or another member of the committee. Brian will be at club training on Thursday 18th December & has generously agreed to extend the deadline to that date!  [David Emanuel]

FOR THE CLUB RUN on Thursday 18th December, Natalie Yates-Bolton's group will be doing a 'Christmas Lights' run to Springhill Hospice in memory of Jenny Wood. All are welcome to join this run, approximately 6 miles, which will set off from the Cricket Club at 7pm as usual & may involve the occasional 'mulled wine stop'!  [June Allingan]

AS WE HEAD into the New Year, we're looking for more people to get involved in helping lead the Training Groups on Mondays & Thursdays, even if that's only to step in when the usual Group Leader is not available. If you would like to get more involved please send an e-mail or speak to one of the Group Leaders. Also, please don't forget the warm-up & running technique clinic that John Sweeney arranges before training at 6.30pm every Thursday. This involves a warm-up run followed by balance, co-ordination & strength exercises, advice on efficient running, some running drills & finishing with dynamic stretches. Although these sessions may seem less attractive on a cold winter night, as John points out it is even more important to warm up properly when it's cold.  [David Emanuel]         

10th DECEMBER 2014
APOLOGIES for the short notice...but if you happen to be in Manchester tomorrow evening (Thursday 11th December) between 5-8pm, you might want to pop into Up & Running on Deansgate. The nice sponsors of the Royton Trail are having a 'Christmas Special' sale for running clubs, with 20% off shoes, clothing & accessories. Nice offer if you can get there!  [David Emanuel]

6th DECEMBER 2014
IN CASE you've not seen the announcement, there is to be no Hot Toddy over Christmas this year. The Todmorden Harriers website states that "due to unforeseen issues regarding safety it has been deemed prudent to cancel...We hope to run a bigger, better Hot Toddy next year". Very disappointing for those of us who enjoy this race, but I know RRRs are already looking at the Ribble Valley 10K at Clitheroe or the Adlington Winter Warmer in Macclesfield as alternative races for 28th December. You can't stop a Royton Road Runner when he/she needs some racing to work off the turkey & mince pies!  [David Emanuel] 

4th DECEMBER 2014
WE'VE JUST received the sad news that David Scott, a founder member of RRR, passed away earlier this week. Condolences to all of David's friends & family. For those who knew David, his funeral will take place at St Lewis' Catholic Church in Croft, followed by the committal at Altrincham crematorium in Dunham Massey, at 1.30pm on 12th December.  [David Emanuel]  

what to do with all those hard-won race medals? Sean Sanders, a runner & parent of a regional club swimmer, has developed the 'My Medals Case' presentation folder which can display up to 36 medals & their ribbons. Full details on the My Medals Case website.  [David Emanuel] 

30th NOVEMBER 2014
WE'RE STILL LOOKING for people to help out at the first of the South East Lancs cross-country race in Tandle Hills on Saturday 20th December. All volunteers will be very welcome, including family & friends if you can bring them along. If you can help out, please contact Bryan Lawton by e-mail or Facebook message as soon as possible.  [David Emanuel]

27th NOVEMBER 2014

MANY THANKS to everyone who has cast their vote so far to help decide who will be unveiled as the RRR Club Runner of the Year at the Presentation Night on 20th December. But there are still many of you who haven't! Please spare just a few minutes to complete the brief survey here. You'll also be asked to make your choice for RRR Charity of the Year for 2015 - this is still an incredibly close race between Dr Kershaw's Hospice, Oldham Mountain Rescue & Cardiac Risk in the Young, so your vote could swing it. While you're about it, please also help the committee decide on the races to be included in the 2015 RRR Club Championship by rating this year's races via a separate survey here. Thanks!  [David Emanuel]

shortlist has been announced this week & it's great to see European Championship 10,000m gold medallist Jo Pavey - 41 years old & mother of two - on the list. The last time a runner won the award was Kelly Holmes in 2004, so I think it's the responsibility of all of us veterans & mothers (or veterans with mothers, or non-veterans with or without mothers) to vote for Jo. You'll be able to vote online for free during the programme on Sunday 14th December, but you need to register beforehand - which you can do here.  [David Emanuel]

23rd NOVEMBER 2014

THE CROSS-COUNTRY FANS amongst you will already have noticed that a 4th race has been added to kick-off the 2014-15 South East Lancs series, with a new Tandle Hills venue on 20th December. This race is being hosted by Oldham & Royton Harriers & they have asked if we can assist by providing some marshals on the day. This will be a great opportunity to get a close-up view of a fine RRR team of mud-lovers, to admire all the enthusiastic juniors who take part in these races & to get some healthy fresh air ahead of the RRR Presentation Night that evening. If you're able to help out, please contact Bryan Lawton by e-mail or Facebook message.  [David Emanuel]

WHILST we're on the subject of volunteering, don't forget that we're also looking for people to work on the best Drinks Station at the 2015 Greater Manchester Marathon on Sunday 19th April. Please sign-up here by the end of November - click the 'Drinks Station Marshal' option & enter the Group Code 'RRR2015'. Then let Mary Freer know that you've signed up, either by a DM on Facebook or by e-mail, including your e-mail address.  [David Emanuel]    

20th NOVEMBER 2014

HAVE YOU been picking up the phone to vote for your favourite on Strictly Come Dancing, X Factor or I'm A Celebrity? If so (or even if not), here's an opportunity to vote on something arguably even more important & it'll cost you nothing more than a few moments of your time. To help decide who will be unveiled as the RRR Club Runner of the Year at the Presentation Night on 20th December, just complete a brief survey here. You'll also be asked to make your choice for RRR Charity of the Year for 2015 - this is currently an incredibly close race between Dr Kershaw's Hospice, Oldham Mountain Rescue & Cardiac Risk in the Young, so your vote could swing it! While you're about it, please also help the committee decide on the races to be included in the 2015 RRR Club Championship by rating this year's races via a separate survey here. Thanks!  [David Emanuel]

13th NOVEMBER 2014

RRR WILL BE having a collection for Oldham Foodbank at the Cricket Club on Monday 1st & Thursday 4th December. If you wish to donate, please can you bring items from the list below to training on those dates:

- UHT Milk
- 500g (small) bags of sugar
- small jars of coffee
- tins of rice pudding
- small tins of tuna
- tinned tomatoes
- tinned veg/carrots (not peas)
- sponge puddings
- jars of pasta sauce

Information on how the Foodbank works can be found here.  All donations will be much appreciated.  [Mary Freer] 

VOLUNTEERS NEEDED for the RRR Greater Manchester Marathon 2015 Drinks Station! Your chance to be part of our long-running best drinks station ever. If you can DEFINITELY be available & willing on Sunday 19th April 2015 we would love you to be a marshal on the RRR Drinks Station. Please sign up before the end of November here - click the 'Drinks Station Marshal' option & enter the Group Code 'RRR2015'. Once entry is complete you'll receive a confirmation e-mail. Please let me know that you've signed up - either by a DM on Facebook or by e-mail, including your e-mail address. This is a great opportunity to be part of a great day & give a boost to our runners - but please only sign-up if you are definitely going to be there.  [Mary Freer] 

OF COURSE, there will be those who prefer to run the Greater Manchester Marathon which case you may be interested in being part of Team Christie, running the race to raise money for The Christie Charity. They have offered RRR five free places for the day, which can be used for the full marathon, half marathon or the four-person relay. Normally these places would be offered in return for a minimum sponsorship pledge of £300, but the charity is prepared to waive this minimum if you commit to raising as much as you can for The Christie. If you are interested in taking one of these places, please send an e-mail to Bryan Lawton by 20th November, specifying which distance you wish to run.  [David Emanuel]  

11th NOVEMBER 2014
IMPORTANT MESSAGE from George Meynell, who knows stuff. Apparently there's a sportsman's dinner at Royton Cricket Club on Thursday 13th November, starting at 7pm. "It will be chaos!" says George & I've no reason to doubt him. If you're going to training that night, might be worth parking elsewhere & jogging down to the club. You have been warned!  [David Emanuel]

8th NOVEMBER 2014

THERE'S a new venue for the RRR Presentation Night this year! Tickets for the social event of the year at Royton Band Club (Sandy Lane OL2 5QP) on 20th December are now available from Bernie Goodwin, priced at £10 each. Doors open at 7pm, with a late bar & music (DJ Sinbad) until 12. As well as the presentation of many hard-won trophies there will be the London Marathon club place draw, the legendary RRR raffle (please bring a prize!) & a sumptuous buffet. Places limited to 150 & likely to sell out fast!  [David Emanuel]

THE CLUB has received a complaint from a member of the public who was apparently knocked off the pavement on one of our club training nights. I'm sure it was just the effect of a big group of runners rushing past at pace...but please try to give consideration to pedestrians when out running together, especially on these dark nights. Thank you!  [David Emanuel]
6th NOVEMBER 2014
WITH the road race season now over (shame!), it's time to have your say on one of the most prestigious trophies to be presented at the RRR Presentation Night on 20th December. The Rod Bowers Trophy for RRR Club Runner of the Year is presented to the person that members think has made the greatest contribution to the club in the last 12 months. That's not necessarily the best or the fastest runner, but the person you believe has made the best overall contribution. Given our growing membership, none of us know every club member - but this a personal vote, based on the people you know through training, races, Facebook, etc. Every vote is important, so please have your say! Deadline for submitting your vote is Friday 5th December. Click here for the online voting form.

On the same form you will be asked to select your preference for the club 'Charity of the Year' for 2015 - the charity to which donations will be made from any club fundraising activity throughout next year. Nominations from members this year are Cardiac Risk In The Young (CRY), Dr Kershaw's Hospice & Oldham Mountain Rescue. Information about each charity (plus links to their websites) can be found alongside the voting form at the link above.

All responses are completely confidential - no RRR member will know how you cast your vote!

But that's not all! We'd also like you to tell the RRR Committee how you rated this season's club races & which other event(s) you'd like to see included in the 2015 RRR Club Championship. Click here for another form which allows you to give a rating to each race, on a scale of 1-10. You don't need to score every race, but feel free to give a rating even if you didn't take part (you may have been a spectator or taken part in a previous year, for example). Then, if you wish, tell us of other favourite events that you'd like to be considered for next year's race list.

We look forward to hearing your views! If you have any questions or are having difficulty accessing the forms, please let me know.  [David Emanuel]
5th NOVEMBER 2014
OUR REQUEST has been submitted by Brian Moore for club places in the 2015 London Marathon. With the increased level of membership we're hoping for an extra place this year! New members may not be aware that these places are allocated via a draw at the RRR Presentation Night in December. This draw is open to those who failed to get a place in the London Marathon ballot - so a 2nd chance for those of you who thought you'd missed out completely. To be included in the draw, please make sure you hand your rejection slip to Brian Moore by 13th December (i.e. a week before Presentation Night).  Good luck!  [David Emanuel]

APOLOGIES if this is old news to some of you, but I've only just discovered that official parkrun wristbands are now available for pre-order! As someone who regularly loses printed barcodes (or puts them in the washing machine by mistake) & doesn't have easy access to a laminator, I think this a great idea...made even better by the fact that they can include your ICE (in case of emergency) telephone number & any relevant medical information, so all the important stuff is in one place. Further details on the ERS website here.  [David Emanuel]    

31st OCTOBER 2014
TICKETS are now available for the Run The Moors Fell Grand Prix Presentation Night, which takes place at Bamford Bowling Club on Friday 5th December. Entry costs just £7, which includes pie & peas, plus guest speakers Denise Parks & Pete Hartley. I'll have tickets with me on the coach to Keswick, but please send an e-mail if you wish to attend the event & aren't going on Sunday's trip. Places are limited, so priority goes to our prize-winners Karen Mather, Barry Greaves & Des Thorpe!  [David Emanuel]

IF YOU ARE planning to travel 'independently' to Keswick on Sunday (i.e. not on the RRR coach) you'll hopefully have received the e-mail from the Race Director regarding the extremely limited parking. More details on the Keswick AC website here - but best advice seems to be to make sure you arrive nice & early!  [David Emanuel]

23rd OCTOBER 2014

THE DEADLINE for booking a seat on the coach to Keswick on 2nd November is fast approaching - you need to let us know by Monday 27th October to guarantee your place. I'm not around between now & then, so please can you contact Bernie Goodwin direct - contact details on the Contacts/Officials page.  [David Emanuel] 

FOR MOST RRRs travelling to Keswick, this end-of season trip is mainly about good company, good beer & (if you head for the Dog & Gun after the race) good goulash...but for quite a few there are vital points at stake! Here's a quick run-down of the trophies still to be decided at the final race of the season (with thanks to Brian Moore for fact-checking & additional details):
Championship: Gary Fielding already has 1st place sewn up, but Mo Butt can still snatch 2nd place from Mark Taylor. For this to happen Mo needs to finish 1st in the group with Mark outside the top three, or 2nd with Mark outside the top four. Guess it depends how quickly they recover from the Snowdonia Marathon trip this weekend!
Group 1: all-conquering Jen Bloor is secure in 1st place & Neil Farrell in 2nd, but 3rd place is between Dave Ellis, Jason Keast & John Lambe. Dave is favourite, as he will claim the prize as long as he finishes in the top four, but the other two are ready to pounce! 
Group 2: already won by Rochelle Evans, the remaining places are between Helen Knight, Simon Howard & Laura Walters. If Laura runs she'll almost certainly finish 2nd, while Simon can finish no higher than 3rd place.
Group 3: Katherine Brierley will win the group unless Fay Royle beats her in the race & finishes 3rd or better in the group. Mark Oliver is safe in 3rd place.
Ladies: Kirsty White & Jen Bloor have secured the top two places, with Debbie Shaw set to take 3rd - unless Rochelle Evans can finish in the top two places with at least one person between her & Debbie.
V40: Stuart Carroll has won this category, with Owen Flage in 2nd, but Chris Lowe can take 3rd from Shane Reading if he can finish 1st or 2nd & ahead of Shane.
V45: Dave Peart & Bernie Goodwin are safe in 1st & 2nd places respectively. Des Thorpe can finish 3rd if he finishes in the top two on the day with Neil Brock not immediately behind him - otherwise Neil will claim the 3rd place prize.
V60: the most open category of all! The prizes will be shared by Mike Doolan, June Allingan & Ronnie Quinn, but the order is still to be decided. If all three run then Ronnie is likely to claim 1st place ahead of Mike then June - but June could potentially claim the title if she scores 24 or 25 points with Mike & Ronnie not running.

And finally...Shane Reading, June Allingan, Kirsty White & Nikki Green will all complete the full set of 17 club championship races if they take part in this last race!  [David Emanuel]    
16th OCTOBER 2014
IT'S THAT TIME OF YEAR when we start the process of choosing the club's 'Charity of the Year' for 2015 - the organisation that we'll support through any club events (quiz nights, etc) next year. Since we started doing this in 2011 the club has donated (through group & individual fundraising) more than £10,000 to Dr Kershaw's Hospice, as well as providing more practical help. In early November we'll be asking all members to vote for their preferred charity alongside your vote for Club Runner of the Year. However the first step is to ask for suggestions for which charities should be on the voting list. Please e-mail me by the end of October if you wish to propose your favourite charity. Please provide the name of the charity & a brief explanation of why you think they deserve our support in 2015.  [David Emanuel]  

14th OCTOBER 2014

RIGHT...Oldham done, just one race to go! If you haven't yet registered for the Derwentwater 10 at Keswick on Sunday 2nd November, please don't leave it too long, as race limit is 500 & there are no entries on the day. Once you've done that, the next step is to get your name down for the RRR coach. This will be leaving Royton at 8am & returning for 8.30pm, with a bit of running & a lot of 'celebrating' in between (price TBC once we have an idea of numbers). You can put your name on the list at the club, or book your seat by sending an e-mail if you prefer. Deadline to guarantee your place is Monday 27th October.  [David Emanuel]  
9th OCTOBER 2014
DUE TO a potential clash with the Rochdale 10K, the decision has been made to move next year's Royton Trail to an earlier date - Wednesday 1st July. No doubt Ronnie Quinn is already planning ways to get 100 RRRs onto the start line...  [David Emanuel]

WHILE we're on the subject of 2015 races...the full RRR club championship list will not be announced until later in the year - after Derwentwater I'm planning a survey to collect members' views on which races we should keep/get rid of - but I think we can safely say that the Southport Mad Dog 10K on 8th February 2015 will again be the opening race. Previous feedback (last year members rated it 2nd only to the Royton Trail) & popularity (74 RRRs in 2014) suggest that we'd be silly not to include it. Online entries are already being taken via the Mad Dog website.  [David Emanuel]     

7th OCTOBER 2014
IT'S HERE already! The first race in this year's Red Rose cross-country league takes place at Leigh Sports Village (WN7 4JY) on Saturday 11th October. The senior ladies race is up first at 1.35pm, but I'll be aiming to get there around 12.30pm with the gazebo if anyone wants to help put it up! Looks like people will be using the RRR Facebook page to arrange car sharing. If you have any questions about the event for which you can't find answers online, please send me an e-mail & I'll try to help.  [David Emanuel]   

30th SEPTEMBER 2014
JUST OVER A MONTH now to the grand finale of the RRR road race season, the Derwentwater 10 at Keswick on Sunday 2nd November. We're putting on a coach as usual for this very popular trip, leaving Royton at 8am & returning for 8.30pm, with a bit of running & a lot of 'celebrating' in between (price TBC once we have an idea of numbers). A list is going up at the club, or you can book your seat by sending an e-mail if you prefer. Deadline to guarantee your place is Monday 27th October. Whilst booking the trip, don't forget to enter the race as well! Pre-entry is online only, with a race limit of 500, so worth getting in early to avoid disappointment. Link to registration can be found here.  [David Emanuel]  

23rd SEPTEMBER 2014
THINKING of running the Greater Manchester Marathon in 2015? If so, you may be interested to know that the 'early bird' entry discount ends at midnight on 30th September. That's next week! Can't see any indication what the price will be going up to...but if you're planning to do it anyway, you might as well save yourself a few pounds. Click here for the race website & online entry form.  [David Emanuel] 

18th SEPTEMBER 2014
NEXT WEEK'S Ron Hill 5K is now full! For those who got in before it was too late, please note that major roadworks are scheduled for the A671 at the busy Whitworth Road/ Shawclough Road junction. Given this & the large field attending, please give yourself some extra time to get to the Cock & Magpie & find somewhere to park.  [David Emanuel]

16th SEPTEMBER 2014
AS A CLUB we are continually striving to improve our training & hence our performances in races. Following recent feedback we are introducing new training sessions each week (starting this Thursday 18th September). Being a friendly club these sessions are open to ANYONE from any Training Group. Everyone will train to their own level but will doubtless receive support & encouragement from everyone taking part. The schedule is as follows:
  • 1st & 3rd Thursday of each month (& 5th if there is one) - hill sessions
  • 2nd & 4th Thursday of each month - interval training
The Training Groups page has been updated to include this new session.  [Brian Moore]

14th SEPTEMBER 2014
ANDY O'SULLIVAN has announced a new name for the Brownhouse Reservoir Race in September 2015. It's great to see our very own Chairman recognised in this way! No doubt Andy will be hoping to see plenty of RRRs on the start line next year. It could also make the committee's discussions about our 2015 race calendar quite interesting...Bryan may have to 'declare an interest' & leave the room!  [David Emanuel] 

13th SEPTEMBER 2014
ROYTON CRICKET CLUB'S Ladies Charity Day takes place this year on Saturday 20th September (from 11am) & is raising money towards a defibrillator for the club. Can you put together a team for the fancy dress 6-a-side cricket, or help out on the day, or contribute prizes for the tombola? Just see the bar staff at the club to let them know that you'd like to be involved.  [David Emanuel]

THERE ARE A LOT OF RACES TO CHOOSE FROM NEXT WEEKEND...but if you are thinking about running the BIG Stockport 10K Run on Sunday 21st September, please note that the event is nearly full. Fortunately Chris Lowe has managed to secure a few guaranteed places for RRR. So if you can't get in via the usual routes, please send an e-mail to Chris & see what he can do for you!  [David Emanuel]

RRR PARKRUN PACING UPDATE: today was the latest event for the RRR pacing team at Oldham parkrun. Organised by Dan Yarwood, this has been operating at Oldham on a monthly basis since February. On this occasion the team was slightly depleted due to holidays & consisted of Dave Emanuel (pacing 25 mins), Neil Brock (26 mins), Dave Ellis (28 mins) & Simon Howard (30 mins). My Garmin 'had a moment' in the trees of the 'woodland walk' & I was therefore slightly over my target. However I was pleased to see that two runners running with me managed to break their PBs. The results show runners with new PBs in front of all the pacing team members - so a successful morning all round! If any other club members are interested in joining the pacing team, please contact Dan Yarwood. We'd like to offer a greater range of pace options in future months (e.g. 35 mins plus).  [Dave Ellis]

THERE ARE just two races in the 2014 Run The Moors Fell Race Grand Prix remaining, but the chances are that these will take place in more adverse weather conditions than the summer races. With this is mind I have now added a link to the full FRA Safety Requirements & Rules for Competition on the 2014 Fell Races page of this website. Essentially if you are planning to take part in any FRA-registered race you should plan to arrive at the start with (as a minimum) waterproof full body cover (i.e. with taped seams, not just "windproof"), hat, gloves, map, compass, whistle & food, with a bumbag/pack to carry them in. These may not all be compulsory for every race, but you won't know this until you arrive at the start as it can depend on weather conditions. Race Organisers are obliged to carry out random kit checks before the race & may refuse to allow runners to participate. If in any doubt it's worth checking the race details on the FRA website & if appropriate contacting the race organiser for further details.  [David Emanuel]         

7th SEPTEMBER 2014
FOR THE BBC VISIT to the club on Monday (see 5th September news below), it has been suggested that members might (weather permitting) want to run in club vests or T-shirts. Anything to get the RRR colours on TV...  [David Emanuel]  

6th SEPTEMBER 2014
MORE NEWS about RRR Presentation Night 2014! Given that this year's event will be much closer to Christmas than usual, we're delighted to announce that every ticket purchased will come with a free festive wish. This could be personal (e.g. an injury-free year, a new pair of running shoes) or more general (such as world peace, or a win for Manchester United). Terms & conditions apply: only one wish per person; wishes are invalid if revealed to any other club member; RRR accepts no liability if wishes do not come true, or if a wish does come true & the person making the wish changes their mind.  [David Emanuel] 

5th SEPTEMBER 2014
THIS YEAR'S RRR Presentation Night will take place on Saturday 20th December at Royton Band Club. It's a big decision to move the event to a different venue for the first time, but we struggled to accommodate everyone who wanted to attend last year (given that the Cricket Club capacity is 100) & you may have noticed that membership has grown significantly this year! The committee did discuss restricting the evening to members only, but finally decided to change venues & continue to include partners & other guests. Limited venue availability means we're also moving closer to Christmas, but hope as many members as possible will still be able to attend (at least it isn't the night before a cross-country race!). Further details to follow - tickets will start to go on sale on the trip to Derwentwater for the final Club Championship race of the season on 2nd November.  [David Emanuel]

THE BBC will potentially be filming at the club on Monday evening (8th September). Not really anything to do with running - it apparently relates to a consumer programme that Lou Gilchrist is due to appear in - but could be good publicity for the club. So if you intend to be at training, you might want to brush your hair & wear your best running kit. On the other hand, if you're camera shy, an escaped convict or otherwise keen to avoid publicity, you have been warned!  [David Emanuel]      

2nd SEPTEMBER 2014
THERE'S a place up for grabs in the Great North Run this weekend (Sunday 7th September). I know it's short notice, but if you're interested please contact Middleton Harrier Steve Senior or Catherine Senior as soon as possible. First one gets the place!  [David Emanuel] 

27th AUGUST 2014
AN E-MAIL has been sent today to all members with details of Road Relay events taking place next month. Team Captains Kirsty White & Shane Reading are seeking club members to be part of the first-ever RRR teams to take part in the North West Counties Road Relay Championships & Northern Athletics Road Relay Championships, which take place on 13th September & 20th September respectively. If you are interested in taking part & haven't received the e-mail, please let me know.  [David Emanuel] 

25th AUGUST 2014
CONTRARY to the information in the latest weekly e-mail newsletter, there are no planned training runs from the cricket club on this Bank Holiday Monday evening. June Allingan informs me that "our group & Natalie's are meeting at the Rose of Lancaster, Chadderton at 7pm with drinks/food afterwards". Meanwhile Simon Howard has posted on Facebook that "myself & Michael Harrison are running up & down Cragg Vale...about 5.5 miles up & 5.5 miles down...leaving Shaw (by car) about 6 so should hopefully by over at Hebden Bridge about 6.30". No mention of "drinks/food" here though!  [David Emanuel]

EAGLE-EYED Dave Phillips has been in touch to point out that, whilst the online entry fee for the City of Salford 10K (7th September) via BookitZone is £26.40, you can enter the very same race through the Sports Tours International website for just £14. Both fees include a handling charge. Not great news if you've already entered & paid the higher amount...but if you're thinking of running & haven't yet signed up, you now know where to go!  [David Emanuel]     

18th AUGUST 2014

on this page back in May, Chasing Rainbows is a fundraising team made up of family, friends & colleagues of PC Nicola Hughes, whose life was taken in 2012. Their aim is to create a special memorial day in honour of Nicola & to raise funds for nominated charities - this year for the North West Police Benevolent Fund & The Firefighters Charity. This year's event, which takes place on 13th September, includes a sponsored half marathon & 10K run from Stalybridge to Diggle, plus a four mile walk from Mossley to Diggle, followed by entertainment all day at The Hanging Gate in Diggle. For an application form click here, for further details go to the Chasing Rainbows website. I'm told that the event may have to be cancelled if they can't attract 30 more runners.  [David Emanuel]  
17th AUGUST 2014
AS YOU MAY HAVE READ on the RRR Facebook page, the landlord of the Horton Arms on Streetbridge found a Yale-type key with a pink plastic cover last Wednesday evening, possibly left behind by one of a group of runners who called in after the Saddleworth 6. If this belongs to you, please call in at the Horton Arms as soon as you can & have a word with the bar staff.  [David Emanuel]

FOLLOWING a recent robbery at Royton Cricket Club, please can keyholders ensure that both gates, side gate & the gate into the overflow car park are locked after all runners have left at the end of our training sessions.  [David Emanuel]  

6th AUGUST 2014
AN EXCITING LANDMARK - for the first time ever, Royton Road Runners has 150 active members! Welcome aboard to Lindsay Cowap, yet another to make the step up from the Royton Run England group to join our happy (and growing) band of runners. Bryan Lawton thinks he might need to order some more club vests...  [David Emanuel] 

5th AUGUST 2014
THANKS TO Brian Moore for pointing out Neil Brock's parkrun time of 19:37 last Saturday. Nothing unusual about that, you might think...except that it was at the event in Rondebosch, Cape Town, South Africa. The course is described as "a fast and flat 2 lap course...with stunning views of Devils in an anti-clockwise direction to get the full benefit on the back straight of the South-Easterly winds that normally blow". Not to take anything away from Neil's impressive performance, which put him in fourth place of more than 250 runners, 1st V50 by some distance. Brian thinks this makes Neil our first international parkrunner...unless you know different?  [David Emanuel]   

31st JULY 2014
RRR COMMITTEE NEWS: sad to announce that Sarah Collins has decided to stand down from her role as Assistant Treasurer; pleased to announce that Mary Freer has agreed to take on the role. On behalf of the committee & everyone at the club I'd like to thank Sarah for her contribution & welcome Mary aboard!  [David Emanuel]

IF YOU haven't yet submitted your information for the 'Emergency Contacts' list, why not do it today? It's a really simple idea - a list that shows who each RRR member would want us to contact in the (unlikely) event that an emergency should occur at training or when we are away at a race. The list & form to complete can both be found on the Members Page, to which access is restricted. If you haven't yet registered, it only takes a second!  [David Emanuel] 

27th JULY 2014
TWO GREAT ACHIEVEMENTS by RRR members to note. Mark Taylor completed the Lakeland 100 (yup, that's 100 actual miles) in a time of 34hrs 20mins 29secs, good enough for an incredible 77th place overall. As the race website says, the circular route encompasses the whole of the Lake District fells including "in the region of 6300m of ascent...the overall time available is 40 hours so sleep at intermediate checkpoints is possible, but time is not on your side...the climb, descent, rugged terrain, darkness and tricky navigation generally ensure a 50-60% failure rate over the 100 mile course". Meanwhile, Karen Stuttard presented £1,190.50 to Dr Kershaw's Hospice, the fantastic grand total from her London Marathon fundraising. Congratulations to you both!  [David Emanuel]

23rd JULY 2014
AS SCHOOLS break up for the summer & people start heading off on their holidays, it seems to me that this must be the hardest time for parkrun organisers to fill their volunteer roles each Saturday morning. Helping out at your local parkrun is a great way to start your weekend with a good deed...and if you don't want to miss out on a run, why not do what I'll be doing this Saturday & run to Alexandra Park & back? You can find the future volunteer roster & an explanation of each of the roles on the Oldham parkrun website.  [David Emanuel]     

19th JULY 2014
FOR ANYONE who didn't see this on Facebook, have a read of Dan Yarwood's recent blog about his experience of joining & running with RRR. A highly recommended read for anyone you know who runs (or wants to run) but is wary about getting involved with a club. With Dan's agreement I'm adding a permanent link to this on the 'Join Our Club' page, for any potential new members who get that far but can't quite decide to take the plunge!  [David Emanuel]

FOR MANY YEARS now I've been running a little 'football prediction' competition. Unlike the better-known 'Fantasy Football' games this one is really simple, requires no ongoing commitment/effort & not even any particular knowledge of football. All you need to do is pick eight teams - two from each of the English Premier League & Football League Divisions - that you think will finish top & bottom of each division in the coming season. It costs just £5 to enter & the most accurate predictions win loads of cash (all entry fees are paid back out in prizes). There are already a few RRRs who take part every year - Ray Shaw is one of the best at recruiting new players! - & over the years it has grown to the extent that in May I paid out £395 in prizes, with the overall winner receiving £200 (at his first attempt). If you fancy joining in the fun, click here for an entry form with further details of how it works. Feel free to pass this on to any family, friends or work colleagues you think may be interested!  [David Emanuel]   

17th JULY 2014
YOU MAY already know that Dr Kershaw's Hospice - our Charity of the Year for 2014 - is celebrating its 25th anniversary this year, with a Gala Dinner at Queen Elizabeth Hall in Oldham on Friday 12th September. Tickets for a four course meal plus live entertainment cost £37.50 each, or you can book a table for 10 & get a discount of £27.50 on the table. For more information contact the fundraising team on 0161-6249984 or by e-mail.  [David Emanuel]

10th JULY 2014
MANY THANKS from me as Race Director & from the club as a whole to everyone who helped out or took part in last night's Royton Trail. As I'm sure you know the turnout was beyond expectations & it was great to see the whole club buying into the event. Special thanks to:
Brian Moore & Gill Lowe (results)
Dave Phillips, George Meynell & Brian Hurst (course marking/take down)
Alan Bodell (finish logistics)
Dave Phillips (marshal co-ordination)
Stuart Carroll (water supply)
Liz Phillips, Richard Fiddling, Debbie Fiddling & Joanne Lawton (finish)
Katie Lawton, Emily Jennings, Nipa (goody bags/water)
Bernie Goodwin, Neil Farrell (amazing chip butties!)
Steve Bowling (rear sweep cycle)
David Emanuel (publicity)
Not forgetting all of the marshals!  [Bryan Lawton]

THE DATE for next year's Greater Manchester Marathon has been confirmed as Sunday 19th April 2015, which is once again a week before London. Race organisers Xtra Mile Events have again asked us to run a Drinks Station, so if you're not planning to run the event please put the date in your 2015 diary (if you have one; or in your smartphone or equivalent; does anyone actually use diaries any more?). After two very successful years, Annabella Gloster has decided to step down as Group Leader. On behalf of everyone involved I'd like to thank Annabella for the fantastic job she's done (Lee Vaughan from Xtra Mile Events says that she "has certainly earned her retirement") & I'm sure she'll continue to be involved in helping her successor. It's a hard act to follow, but I'm delighted to announce that Mary Freer has volunteered to take over as Group Leader for 2015. I'm sure Mary will get loads of help & support from everyone at the club. We'll start asking for volunteers later in the year as usual.  [David Emanuel]

NOTICED a number of you taking full advantage of the pre/post-event massages offered by Sports Physio UK at the Royton Trail on Wednesday. This free service was offered "as gratitude for your support & use of our clinic over the last 12 months". This is a good time to mention that they are now offering a special 15% discount to RRR members on all therapy services at the clinic in Shaw - physiotherapy, sports massage, podiatry & chiropody - on production of your UK Athletics membership card.  [David Emanuel]     

4th JULY 2014

RACE DIRECTOR Bryan Lawton has asked me to mention that the post-race food at next week's Royton Trail will consist of 100 chip butties from Farrell's Fish n Chips. Sounds like a good incentive to get to the finish quickly, especially if there's a big turnout! Many thanks to Neil Farrell for arranging this.  [David Emanuel] 
21st JUNE 2014
INSPIRED by Mary Freer's demonstration below? If so, you'll be pleased to know that RRR hoodies are now back in stock in all sizes. Order yours now, before the cold weather returns, from here.  [David Emanuel]

19th JUNE 2014

I'M THINKING of starting a new business making instructional videos for runners. Many thanks to Mary Freer for her assistance at parkrun on Saturday with the first in the series, available FREE below, which I'm calling "How To Put On A Club Hoodie For A Team Photo".  [David Emanuel] 
17th JUNE 2014
FOLLOWING the news item below (13th May), announcing the launch of a new running performance clinic at the University of Salford, Stuart Carroll & I had the opportunity to go to a launch event last week - Stuart probably because he's the fastest runner in the club, me (I assume) because I am the most stylish runner? Anyway a very interesting evening it was, getting to see their hi-tech equipment in action & hearing what their research has revealed so far. My summary, in layman's terms: their analysis of the running gait of many elite athletes suggests that there are certain common characteristics to a good/effective running style. By looking at your running style compared to these elite runners, they think they can identify those elements which may be causing you injury problems, could lead to injury in future or might simply be preventing you running faster. The clinic offers personalised programmes (involving, for example, exercises & drills) which are designed to help you overcome these problems. Two options are available, priced at £140 & £190, but there's a 10% discount available for RRR members. Here's an example of the extremely thorough report that you would receive. I understand that one RRR member has already signed-up following the previous announcement...don't know who that is, but if you want to share your experiences with the rest of the club it would be great to hear how you get on!  [David Emanuel]          
14th JUNE 2014
GOOD FOR AGE entries for the 2015 Virgin London Marathon are now open! If you have run a qualifying time since January 2013 you can apply for an automatic place at London - but please note that you must get your application in by 5pm on 4th July. Entry link & details of the required times for each age group can be found on the London Marathon website here.  [David Emanuel]

WHAT A GREAT MORNING at Alexandra Park for RRR parkrun day! Fantastic to see so many in club colours, whether running, volunteering, supporting or (in the case of Mary & Dave Freer) doing a fantastic job taking Royton Trail entries. Thanks to everyone who made the effort to come along, not least those who used parkrun as a 5K warm-up before heading straight off to run the second race of the Rochdale 3 Day Event. Delighted to announce that, with our huge contribution, Oldham parkrun's 200th event saw it exceed 200 runners for the first time, with results showing 215 finishers. Well done all - pictures to follow soon!  [David Emanuel]

THANKS ALSO to everyone who entered my 'step challenge' competition, donating £1 to the British Heart Foundation for a guess at the number of steps I would complete in the 12 days to Friday 13th June. Special thanks to Simon Lake & Jason Keast, who each generously donated £5 for 5 guesses. The closest guess - by the person who took by far the longest time to come up with a figure, after doing some incredibly complicated mental calculations - was Shane Reading, whose estimate of 230,000 was remarkably close to my actual total of 235,584 steps. Shane wins a lovely new RRR club jacket. Thanks again for the generous donations - better luck next time! [David Emanuel]     

11th JUNE 2014
IF YOU haven't yet seen any details of RRR parkrun day - which takes place this coming Saturday 14th June at Alexandra Park, Oldham - I'm guessing that you've been living on a remote island with no internet connection...but then unless you've just got back you won't be reading this either. Anyway, the aim of parkrun day is to get as many club members as possible to come along (ideally in club hoodies, jackets, T-shirts & vests) & either take part in, volunteer or support the 200th Oldham parkrun. If this works well, we may also help them break through the 200-runner barrier for the first time (current attendance record is 194).

I'm also throwing in an exclusive competition to give one very lucky RRR member the chance to win a new club jacket (usual price £35) for just £1. I'm currently in the middle of a 'step challenge' with colleagues at work, raising funds for the British Heart Foundation, which requires each of us to record the number of steps we take in the 12 days to 13th June. All you need to do is send me an e-mail (before the weekend) with your guess at my personal step total, bring along a £1 coin to parkrun on Saturday (or get someone else to bring it along on your behalf if you can't make it) & the person with the closest guess will win a shiny new club jacket. A little hint - our 'target' is 10,000 steps per day, or 120,000 over the 12 days. If you're feeling generous (or lucky) you're more than welcome to have several guesses - £1 per go, all proceeds to the BHF!

In addition, Bryan Lawton will be in attendance on Saturday morning with jackets & other club kit for you to purchase. This is also a good opportunity to enter the Royton Trail - we'll have entry forms for you to complete, but you might prefer to print one & complete it beforehand. Cheques preferred to cash if possible!

This really is a great opportunity for those RRRs who have never tried parkrun to give it a go, or for those who haven't been for a while to make a comeback. And if you've been thinking about introducing family or friends to this wonderful event, this would be the perfect time to do so! You'll even get to see three exciting RRR Cup matches & meet Gloria the RRR gazebo. Just make sure, if you're planning to run for the first time, that you register first. See you on Saturday!  [David Emanuel] 

8th JUNE 2014
A RACE for your diary...the 'Blues And Twos' 10K multi-terrain race takes place on Wednesday 25th June from Lancashire Police HQ in Preston. Maybe a nice warm-up for the Rochdale 10K? Full details & an entry form can be found here.  [David Emanuel]

AND ANOTHER one...once again this year it's possible to turn the Radcliffe AC 3-day event into even more challenging 4-day event by running the Royton Trail first! After our race on Wednesday 9th July, Radcliffe's event starts with the Bull Hill Fell Race on Thursday 10th, followed by a 5 mile cross-country run on Friday 11th & finishing with a 5 mile trail race on Saturday 12th. The last one doesn't start until 1pm, so you could even squeeze in a parkrun in the morning! Full details on the Radcliffe AC website here.  [David Emanuel]

JUST IN CASE you've already entered...the Eddie Cheetham Memorial Race (organised by Belle Vue Racers, also known as the Debdale Park 7K), due to take place on Sunday 6th July, has been cancelled. All entry fees paid will be reimbursed. One of the main reasons for cancellation appears to be the clash with the Tour de France weekend in Yorkshire (plus a tiny bit of Lancashire), which many of us will no doubt be watching!  [David Emanuel]

5th JUNE 2014

THERE'S HOPE for us all! Just been reading in last weekend's Observer about Steve Way, who seven years ago was a 20-a-day smoker with high blood pressure who weighed 16st 7lb & had "an addiction to takeaways & chocolate". Although he had sometimes tried running to lose weight, it was only in late 2007 that he decided for his health he "had to do something radically different to break the cycle". Fast forward to the 2014 London Marathon where, not even starting with the elite field, he finished 16th in 2:16:27, third British athlete behind Mo Farah & Chris Thompson. As a result he's been selected to run for England in the Commonwealth Games marathon - at the age of 40. Way describes himself as "a bit of a running nerd", but he seems to put much of his success down to his physiology: "I don't seem to put my body under that much stress when I do marathon-pace type efforts...even doing back-to-back long runs at the weekend, when I might do a marathon on the Saturday & 40 miles on the Sunday, my body seems accept it quite nicely." Feeling inspired? You can read the full article here.  [David Emanuel] 

Congratulations to June Allingan, Natalie Yates-Bolton & Diane Allingan on completing the Cheshire Sprint Triathlon at Nantwich! The event was made up of a 500m swim (in "the only heated outdoor brine swimming pool in Great Britain"), followed by a 20K bike ride & finishing with a 5K run. Official results (sent to me by Brian Moore, who I believe looks at the results of every event, happening anywhere in the world, just in case there's an RRR taking part) show that Diane led our intrepid trio home with a combined time of 1:40:21, followed by Natalie in 1:44:42 & June in 1:55:32. June was the first V70 to finish (definitely) as well as the first President to cross the line (probably). Well done all three - if any of you would like to write a report on the experience for the website, just let me know!  [David Emanuel]    
1st JUNE 2014
WITH NO club championship races in June, it's time for parkrun to take centre stage, for the next fortnight in particular. As reported here previously, next Saturday 7th June sees the start of a brand new local parkrun at Watergrove Reservoir near Wardle & Littleborough - visit the parkrun page for more details. Then on Saturday 14th June (as if you needed reminding) it's RRR parkrun day. If you've missed the messages about this, just scroll down to the original news item below (4th May) to see why you must come along to Alexandra Park on 14th June - whether as a runner, volunteer, pacer or just to watch the fun. To make it even more exciting, we already have three RRR Cup Second Round matches scheduled for that day. If you've not tried parkrun before, please make sure that you register first!  [David Emanuel]    

26th MAY 2014
HER LADYSHIP President June Allingan has been in touch regarding the next RRR 'away night' on Monday 16th June. This is the first 'President's Pack Run' & June would like an idea of who'll be attending so that she can give the Diggle Hotel an indication of numbers for supper after the run. Please let June know by 10th June, either in person at the club or by e-mail. Thanks!  [David Emanuel]

HERE'S AN EVENT that's well worth supporting...Chasing Rainbows is a fundraising team made up of family, friends & colleagues of PC Nicola Hughes, whose life was taken in 2012. Their aim is to create a special memorial day in honour of Nicola & to raise funds for nominated charities - this year for the North West Police Benevolent Fund & The Firefighters Charity. The 2014 event includes a sponsored half marathon & 10K run from Stalybridge to Diggle, plus a four mile walk from Mossley to Diggle, followed by entertainment all day at The Hanging Gate in Diggle. For an application form click here, for further details go to 'Fans of Chasing Rainbows' on Facebook.  [David Emanuel]  

25th MAY 2014
I'M DELIGHTED to announce the appointment of the first-ever RRR Team Captains - Kirsty White & Shane Reading. Based on the nominations received (see News item, 5th May) Kirsty & Shane were clearly the popular choice, which made this a very easy decision for the committee. Since these are new roles it's really up to our new Team Captains to decide what to make of them...but this will certainly involve helping to decide on any team events that the club enters in future (cross-country leagues, relays, etc), recruitment & selection of teams for those events & making sure that people turn up on race day. Plus of course the all-important half-time team talks & directing the assembly of the gazebo. I'm sure you'll join me in welcoming & congratulating Kirsty & Shane on their appointment, wishing them every success & offering any support they may require!  [David Emanuel]

22nd MAY 2014
WITH NO TAKERS for the 'Away Night' next week & with the Sports Centre at Kingsway closed for the Bank Holiday, there will be no club training on Monday 26th May. Enjoy the day off & start preparing for the daunting challenge that is the Dovestone Diamond! For those who have chosen to give that race a miss on Wednesday, Brian Moore will be holding a track session as usual.  [David Emanuel]

DON'T KNOW how many of you are familiar with the Running Bug website, but you may like to know that it's now possible to tell the world that you've entered the Royton Trail & "interact with other Running Bug members in the run-up to the event". Just click here & login/register, then follow the instructions. I'll be back after the race to encourage you all to 'rate & review' the event. The Bug people say their research shows that "members choosing races will be guided by ratings & reviews of the event in previous years...we have tried & tested this approach & it has a fantastic impact on race numbers".  [David Emanuel]     

20th MAY 2014
FOR THOSE who haven't picked it up on Facebook, there's a new local parkrun starting next month - very local for Brian Moore, it's practically in his back garden. Watergrove parkrun will take place at Watergrove Reservoir (no surprise there) near Wardle & Littleborough. The new event kicks off on 7th June & it looks like a challenging off-road course, offering something quite different to Oldham or Heaton Park. Here's an idea for you regular parkrunners - why not go along to support the new event at Watergrove on 7th June & then back to Oldham for our 'parkrun day' on 14th?  [David Emanuel] 

a new running challenge? Marathons not tough enough? I've been reading about the 'marathon monks' of Mt Hiei near Kyoto, Japan, who undertake a seven-year challenge "to achieve enlightenment". The Kaihogyo involves walking/running for 30K for 100 successive days in each of the first three years, moving up to 200 successive days in years four & five (the fifth year also involves a period of seven days without food, water or rest, with two fellow monks making sure you don't fall asleep). Year six requires covering 60K per day for 100 days, with the final year starting with 84K for 100 days followed by a final 100 days of 30K. Apparently only 46 men have completed the challenge since 1885. Historically, it seems that after the first 100 days withdrawal from the challenge was not allowed & the participant had either to complete the challenge or commit suicide - the mountain is said to be littered with the unmarked graves of those who failed. I can't find an entry form online, but if one turns up I'll let you know...  [David Emanuel]  

from the Ian Casey 5K posted by John Mayall on the Rochdale Harriers Facebook page. If nothing else it's a fantastic study of different running styles!  [David Emanuel]

enjoyed the Chester Half Marathon on Sunday...or didn't run & wish you had...or couldn't run & want to make up for it next year...or just like entering races really, really can sign-up for the 2015 race via the Active Leisure Events website now for the 'early bird' price of £26 (UKA affiliated runners). This price is only available until 31st May! I can't guarantee that it'll be in next year's RRR Club Championship, but there doesn't seem to be any reason why we'd want to remove it. Please note, however, that the provisional date for the 2015 Brathay Windermere Marathon is also 17th May & I know loads of you will want to run that race instead!  [David Emanuel] 

14th MAY 2014
FURTHER to the request a couple of weeks ago for marshals for the Royton Trail in July (although only if you absolutely can't take part in the race, of course), Colin Green has been in touch to ask if anyone is available to do a similar job at the Dovestone Diamond on Wednesday 28th May. If you or someone you know can help out, at either event, just drop me a line & I'll pass it on!  [David Emanuel]  

13th MAY 2014
THIS WEEK the club has received a donation of £500 from XtraMile Events in recognition of the efforts of our Drinks Station volunteers at the Greater Manchester Marathon. Lee Vaughan from XtraMile says, "We have received many compliments about the marshals from the participants. We were also awarded a 'Best Marathon' prize which is a credit to your group's efforts throughout the event. Your group's help was invaluable in making the event a success & we would really like to thank Royton Road Runners for this."  Fully deserved praise - well done Annabella & everyone from RRR who helped out on the day!  [David Emanuel]

s been in touch to advise that along with Kay Fitton, Helen Knight, Teresa Hollins & Nick Allen she is running the Brussels 20K on Sunday 18th May to raise money for Cardiac Risk in the Young. I believe this is a race in the city of Brussels & nothing to do with sprouts. If you wish to make a donation to this very worthwhile cause you can do so via Vikki's fundraising page.  [David Emanuel]

ANNABELLA GLOSTER has forwarded details of a newly-established running performance clinic at the University of Salford. Based on cutting-edge research into the running gait of elite athletes, the university is launching the service with an introductory offer of £125 for a single two-hour assessment or £175 for a more detailed programme. For more information & to book an appointment, click here.  [David Emanuel]     

8th MAY 2014

IF you're up for another race after the double of the Ian Casey Memorial 5K & Chester Half Marathon at the end of next week, Andy O'Sullivan is holding the Diane Modahl Commonwealth Trail 5K on Tuesday 20th May in Whitworth. The race, which takes in two laps of Brownhouse Wham Reservoir, is raising funds for the Diane Modahl Sports Foundation. Full details & entry form here.  [David Emanuel]

MONDAY saw the last RRR 'away night' from the King Wednesday 14th May will be the very last of Shane's famous/unique Quiz Nights. Nothing to do with running, but there's always good RRR attendance at these events & (for reasons too complicated to explain) we did go through a period of calling our team 2:15:25 in honour of Paula Radcliffe's marathon world record. This final Quiz Night promises to be a memorable if emotional occasion, so well worth attending if you can make it! Just head for the King Bill, Shore, Littleborough, OL15 9LW. Arrive 8.30pm for a 9pm(ish) start. [David Emanuel]   

6th MAY 2014
AS YOU MAY HAVE SEEN on our Facebook page, Rose Rowson has a number available for the Chester Half Marathon. If you're interested, please let me know & I'll pass your name on to Rose.  [David Emanuel]

THANKS to everyone who came along to the King Bill yesterday evening for a slightly damp but enjoyable 'away night' run...and special thanks to our hosts Ian & Shane, not just for tonight but for all of the runs they've supported in their time at the pub (even the one when it hailed/snowed in June). With Ian & Shane due to leave in a couple of weeks, this is the last away night they'll host for us. We've had a great relationship with the pub over the last few years, so on behalf of everyone at RRR, thanks for everything!  [David Emanuel]

EXACTLY 60 years ago today, Roger Bannister become the first person to run a mile in less than four minutes. If you're out for a run today, regardless of the distance, why not make it a fartlek & try throwing in a fast mile to mark this fantastic achievement?  [David Emanuel]     


FASCINATING FOUR-MINUTE MILE FACTS: most people know that Roger Bannister had two pacemakers - Chris Brasher & Chris Chataway - who helped him break the four-minute barrier at Iffley Road sports ground in Oxford on May 6th 1954. What I hadn't realised is that the race was part of a match between the Amateur Athletics Association & Oxford University. There were six athletes taking part in the mile & with Brasher dropping back after setting the early pace, it was a certain Tom Hulatt (4mins 16secs) who finished third behind Bannister & Chataway. Hulatt was the odd man out - the only one not a university student, he worked in a Derbyshire colliery (near Tibshelf, now better known as a service station on the M1) who "had a rat-catching business on the side" & did most of his training running the five miles to & from work. Conditions for the record attempt were apparently not ideal, with a 15mph crosswind & gusts of up to 25mph (sounds like a typical evening on the Kingsway track), making the performance even more remarkable. The world mile record currently stands at 3:43:13 (set by Hitcham El Guerrouj in 1999), while the women's record is 4:12:56 (Svetlana Masterkova, 1996). If those sound a bit tough to beat, maybe the age group records for men or women might be more to your liking...I'd like to see Dave Phillips have a go a the V70 record (5:19:75)!  [David Emanuel]

5th MAY 201

FOLLOWING the appointment of Cross-Country captains for our very successful winter campaign (and the subsequent departure of Men's Captain Ian McBride), the RRR Committee has decided to extend the role by inviting nominations for overall Team Captains. These new roles (Men's Captain & Ladies Captain) will focus primarily on any 'team events' that the club takes part in - not just cross-country but also relay events, etc. The captains will be involved in helping choose the events, the recruitment & selection of teams, making sure that people turn up on race day...and of course going up to collect the trophies when we achieve spectacular victories. If you would like to put yourself forward for one of these roles - or nominate someone else - please send me an e-mail. If you're nominating someone else, probably worth just checking that they want to do it first!  [David Emanuel]  

4th MAY 2014
ANOTHER exciting new venture for our club! Saturday 14th June has been designated 'RRR Parkrun Day' & we want as many club members as possible to come along (ideally in club hoodies, jackets, T-shirts & vests) to Alexandra Park, Oldham at 9am that morning. Here's a great opportunity for those who have never tried parkrun to give it a go & for those who haven't been for a while to make a comeback...and if you've been thinking about introducing family or friends to this wonderful event, this would be the perfect time to do so! There are various ways you can get involved:

  • just come along & run the 5K route; if you haven't taken part before it's completely free, you just need to register first.
  • join the RRR Pacing Team that will be trying to help parkrunners of various standards achieve a new PB; if you'd like to be part of the team on 14th June or at the imminent 'pacing event' on 17th May, just send an e-mail to Dan Yarwood.
  • if you're currently injured or otherwise unable to take part, you can volunteer for one of the many roles that help make the event run smoothly every Saturday; just drop a line to the Oldham helpers confirming the date you want to be involved.
  • if Saturday morning is always the time for your long run, why not choose a route that takes you into Alexandra Park just before 9am? You can even do what I've done this year as part of my marathon training & incorporate parkrun into a long run - I've found it a good way to add a bit of variety & it's a good challenge to try running a fast(ish) 5K in the middle of a 20-miler!
  • if none of those options appeal, then just come along & support your fellow club members; we'll also be giving people the opportunity to sign-up for the Royton Trail on the day, so any help with that will be gratefully received; plus we'll be bringing Gloria the Gazebo along, so it's a rare chance to meet her for those who didn't run the cross-country races at the start of the year...

So don't just pencil the date in your diary, write it in ink, in big letters & underline it too. See you at RRR Parkrun Day on 14th June!  [David Emanuel]    

1st MAY 2014
YOU MUST KNOW by now about Ronnie Quinn's campaign to get 100 RRRs taking part in this year's Royton Trail...but if you won't be able to run for any reason there's still an important role you can play! Dave Phillips has once again taken on the challenging task of recruiting & organising a crack team of race marshals. If you or any friends or family would like to help out, please drop me a line & I'll let Dave know.  [David Emanuel]  

30th APRIL 2014
VOTE NOW! Just received details (at very short notice) of this year's Oldham Sports Awards. Nominations can be made in various categories - Coach of the Year, Volunteer, Sports Achiever, Unsung can nominate in as many categories as you wish, but I'd strongly recommend putting forward RRR for the Club of the Year award (we were on the shortlist in 2012). You can find the Nomination Form at the bottom of the page here. We need to act quickly - closing date is this coming Sunday 4th May. Given the limited time, the best option is to complete & save the form as a Word document & send it by e-mail - details are on the last page!  [David Emanuel]     

28th APRIL 2014

reaches RRR Towers that the proposed Moonraker 8K, originally scheduled for 3rd August, has been cancelled. Middleton Harriers have confirmed that entry fees will be refunded to anyone who had already entered. The RRR Committee will be considering possible replacements - a decision will be announced on this site as soon as possible.  [David Emanuel]

club championship news...the  Chester Half Marathon on Sunday 18th May is now full. If you hadn't quite got around to entering, you've missed your chance. You could always come & join me in the Brathay Windermere Marathon instead!  [David Emanuel]
25th APRIL 2014
AFTER completing the Amsterdam Marathon for my 70th birthday, what to do for my 71st? A kind 'friend' suggested my first sprint triathlpn. This will be a challenge - I can only do breaststroke, don't like water in my eyes, ears or nose & haven't ridden a bike since Adam was a fact at this point I don't even have a bike (help!). At least I can run a bit! Dr Kershaw's Hospice & Parkinson's UK will be extremely glad of any donations - however large or small - & I will be grateful for all support given. Please visit my fundraising page. Thank you!  [June Allingan] 
AFTER completing the Amsterdam Marathon for my 70th birthday, what to do for my 71st? A kind 'friend' suggested my first sprint triathlpn. This will be a challenge - I can only do breaststroke, don't like water in my eyes, ears or nose & haven't ridden a bike since Adam was a fact at this point I don't even have a bike (help!). At least I can run a bit! Dr Kershaw's Hospice & Parkinson's UK will be extremely glad of any donations - however large or small - & I will be grateful for all support given. Please visit my fundraising page. Thank you!  [June Allingan] 
21st APRIL 2014
AFTER the tragic incident at last year's event, it was great to hear that this year's Boston Marathon passed off successfully. More than 36,000 runners took part in the race, which was won by an American (38-year-old Meb Keflezighi) for the first time since 1983. There was a moment's silence before the start, after which the race announcer (not Andy O'Sullivan on this occasion) encouraged the runners to "Take back that finish line!" CNN reported that the race "has become a national symbol of resiliency and determination".  [David Emanuel]     

18th APRIL 2014
MARATHON POSTSCRIPT: poor research on my part meant that in the Greater Manchester Marathon race report I failed to mention the fact that this was the 50th completed 26.2-miler for Steve Shaw & the 30th for Chris Eavers. Fantastic achievements - many congratulations to both, I'm sure there are many more still to come!  [David Emanuel]

YOU MAY REMEMBER back in February, in the wake of the record-breaking RRR turnout at the Mad Dog 10K, that Ronnie Quinn started a campaign to get 100 club members taking part in a race for the first time. The target race is (of course) our very own Royton Trail, which takes place this year on Wednesday 9th July. With the big marathons now out of the way, I think it's time to start focusing on this challenge...and the first step is to print & fill in your entry form. Don't delay - do it today!  [David Emanuel]      

10th APRIL 2014
DATE for your summer diary...the popular Littleborough Lions 5K takes place this year on Tuesday 26th August at 7pm. The race starts & finishes at the Conservative Club in Peel Street, Littleborough & is held in aid of a number of local charities. More details on the UK Results website.  [David Emanuel]

9th APRIL 2014
A REPORT in today's Rochdale Observer on Andi Jones' victory in the Greater Manchester Marathon announces that it was "potentially his last-ever victory over 26.2 miles, as Andi and his family are heading for a new life in the Middle East this summer". Seems Andi is taking up a new teaching job in Qatar. Not quite sure why living in a different part of the world will stop him running (or winning) marathons in future? First Shaun Armstrong, now Andi seems that all the best runner-teachers are heading for the Persian Gulf!  [David Emanuel]  

6th APRIL 2014
AT OLDHAM PARKRUN on 5th April we marked the sad death of Steve Worland, who collapsed & died whilst taking part in Ashton Court parkrun the previous weekend. For those who may not have seen it, I thought it worth repeating here the words of Tom Williams in the latest parkrun weekly newsletter; I think this will strike a chord with all of us who have lost a friend we met through running: "The beauty of our wonderful extended family is that we are able to spend time with so many more amazing people than before, people who we'd never otherwise have met. Our lives have been enriched more than we could ever have imagined thanks to the folks we've run or volunteered with every Saturday morning. But, as the number of people we'd never have met grows it's a sad consequence that the number of people we'd never have lost does the's at times like this we should celebrate the opportunities parkrun has given us rather than focus on the things it's taken away..."  [David Emanuel] 

29th MARCH 2014
SAD NEWS TO ANNOUNCE: RRR reigning club champion Ian McBride is leaving us to run with Salford Harriers. This clearly hasn't been an easy or sudden decision for Ian, who says, "I would like to thank everyone at the club for making me feel so welcome when I joined. It truly is a superb club & I wish every member the very best in the future & many PBs along the way. RRR has made me the person I am today. I now want to take the final step as I'm not getting any younger & I realise the next few years are important if I'm to reach my potential. I will still see everyone, as I will watch most races & support the club any way I can." I'm sure I speak for everyone at the club in thanking Ian for his fantastic performances in an RRR vest - which have really helped put us on the map - & hoping that he goes on to achieve even more...he'll always be 'one of ours' whatever colours he's wearing. Ian's last race for the club will be next Sunday's Greater Manchester Marathon...a great opportunity for those of us working on the RRR Drinks Station to cheer him on to breaking the club marathon record one last time!  [David Emanuel]  

not ideal timing for those running the Greater Manchester Marathon next weekend...but the Oldham Real Ale Festival takes place at Queen Elizabeth Hall next Friday 4th April. There's sure to be a good contingent of RRRs there in the evening - beer is (allegedly) a good source of carbohydrate - so why not go along & enjoy the fun?  [David Emanuel]

26th MARCH 2014
OUR FRIENDS at Royton Tennis Club are holding a Quiz Night at the Cricket Club on Friday 11th April. The event kicks off at 8pm & costs just £2 to enter, which includes curry & rice. Sounds like a bargain! Tickets are available from Gill Smith on 07977123168.  [David Emanuel] 

22nd MARCH 2014
LITTLEBOROUGH RUGBY CLUB is hosting a fundraising 4K run/walk & 10K run on 26th April. The events will take place at their home near Hollingworth Lake as part of a Fun Day with various attractions, food & bar. Both races are multi-terrain & scheduled for the afternoon, so you could pop along after a morning parkrun if you were so inclined! More details available on the UK Results website here.  [David Emanuel] 

19th MARCH 201
AN E-MAIL has been sent today to everyone who has volunteered for the RRR Drinks Station at the Greater Manchester Marathon on 6th April with final instructions from our Group Leader, Annabella Gloster. If you've volunteered & not received this e-mail, please let me know as soon as possible.  [David Emanuel]  

14th MARCH 2014

MANY THANKS to Annabella Gloster & her glamorous assistants for an excellent 'First Aid for Runners' session at Royton Cricket Club on Thursday evening. Full of practical advice for dealing with an emergency when out on a run, pIus the chance to attempt to revive some legless casualties (see right), I'm sure everyone found it well worth attending. Would you know what to do if one of your running colleagues got into difficulty? Annabella has offered to run further such sessions if there is the demand, so please let me know if you'd be interested.  [David Emanuel]


ALTHOUGH we now have a full complement of volunteers for the RRR Drinks Station at the Greater Manchester Marathon, there are still opportunities available in other support roles on the day. So if you didn't register for the Drinks Station but would now like to be involved, please let me know.  [David Emanuel]      

9th MARCH 2014

CONGRATULATIONS to the many RRRs who completed the Dentdale Run, not least to Ian McBride for another fine race win. Sadly I was unfit to travel, possibly due to having been poisoned by one of my jealous V50 rivals (Miss Marple & Sherlock Holmes are both on the case), so if anyone would like to write a report for the website, just send it through in any format. Would be nice to have a different perspective for a change!  [David Emanuel]


FOR THOSE who put their names forward for the Northern Athletics Road Relays that take place in Heaton Park next weekend...I'm afraid the club won't be entering any teams on this occasion. We weren't helped by the late confirmation of details on the NA website, after which we found that a number of our runners had already arranged to be running elsewhere. So we've decided the best option is to give this one a miss & we're now looking at some possible team events later in the year. Apologies to anyone who had kept the date free in anticipation.  [David Emanuel]

4th MARCH 2014

DON'T FORGET that the deadline for paying your annual RRR membership fee is 31st you only have another 27 days to pay! This deadline is especially important for those who have run in club championship races or intend to do so before April - if you don't pay your membership you'll lose the points you've earned to date! Details of how to pay - preferably by bank transfer - can be found on the new Membership Renewal page.  [David Emanuel]

28th FEBRUARY 2014

ARE YOU a member - or thinking of becoming a member - of the DW Sports gym? Becki Robinson has established that a corporate rate is available (10% discount) if there are 10 or more RRR members who are also gym members. Plenty of people have confirmed their membership already on the RRR Facebook page...but for those who don't do FB, please just send an e-mail to Becki confirming that you're a member.  [David Emanuel]  

25th FEBRUARY 2014

COACH DETAILS confirmed by Bernie Goodwin for the much-anticipated trip to Dent on Saturday 8th March! The Party Bus will leave Royton (from the old Assembly Hall car park as usual) at 9am, departing Dent at 6pm to arrive back home at about 8.30pm. In between I'm pretty certain there will be some eating & drinking in some of Dent's fine hostelries, with possibly a bit of running thrown in for good measure. This year is the 30th anniversary Dentdale Run, so it promises to be an extra special occasion. Please let me know if you wish to book your seat.  [David Emanuel]   

24th FEBRUARY 2014

WE have three tickets available (at £3 per ticket) for the South East Lancs Cross-Country Presentation Night on Friday 28th March (7.30pm, Horwich RMI Working Men's Club, near Bolton). First refusal was given to those due to collect prizes on the night & Ladies Captain Kirsty White (plus guest) has taken up the if you'd like to join her, please e-mail to let me know how many tickets you would like. It's first come first served & we'll be returning any that haven't been sold at the end of the week, so please act quickly to avoid disappointment!  [David Emanuel] 

22nd FEBRUARY 2014
THANKS to everyone who came along to the RRR Quiz Night. We had 13 teams taking part, with pretty impressive scores all round.  I don't think my questions were too easy, so that must mean we had a roomful of very intelligent people! The winners were 'Ken Dodd's Dad's Dog's Dead', Bryan Lawton's carefully-selected combination of ringers/TV game-show veterans, but they only finished a couple of points ahead of the 'Chaddy Enders', who in turn were closely followed by 'Ronnie's Still Missing' & 'Kane & Able'. Of course no quiz night is complete without some element of controversy...and it was my misfortune to include a question on the difference between 'Nordic' & 'Scandinavian' when there was a person of Finnish descent in the room! In my defence, the Oxford Dictionaries do define 'nordic' as "relating to or denoting Scandinavia, Finland & Iceland...", but it's now clear that this isn't universally accepted & probably depends on where you're from & whether you're considering it linguistically, geographically or historically. So with apologies to Annabella, I've certainly learnt something (I won't be using that question again)...hopefully it didn't spoil a good night. Thanks to President June for all the organising, to Colin 'The Roadie' Green for providing the equipment that meant I could be heard over the deafening hand-dryer in the Gents & to everyone who donated to/bought tickets for the raffle which raised £127 for Dr Kershaw's Hospice. Hopefully we'll do it all again later in the year!  [David Emanuel]       

17th FEBRUARY 2014
FINAL REMINDER that it's quiz time on Friday! The RRR Quiz Night starts at 7.30pm on 21st February at Royton Cricket Club. Entry costs just £6 per head which covers entry to the quiz, potato pie supper, stand up bingo & more. Non-members very welcome, as are prizes for the raffle (proceeds to Dr Kershaw's Hospice). If you want to take part but don't have a team, please come along, we'll find a place for you! Finally, as part of your pre-quiz preparation, please start thinking of a team name...the wittier & more original the better!  [David Emanuel]

ACCORDING to race organisers Xtra Mile Events, 25 people have now registered for the RRR Drinks Station at the Greater Manchester Marathon in April. I've listed the names below - if you're on the list but can't now make it, please let me know as soon as possible, so that we can let the organisers know. If you think you've registered but are not showing here, please let me know that too!

June Allingan
Diane Allingan
Stuart Carroll
Sarah Collins
David Emanuel
David Freer
Mary Freer
Annabella Gloster
Gary Gloster
Bernard Goodwin
Nikki Green
Robert Kellett
Matthew Kilburn
Valerie Kilburn
Bryan Lawton
Ann Leyland
David Leyland
Chris Lowe
Gillian Lowe
Karen Mather
Liz Phillips
Ronnie Quinn
Rose Rowson
Karen Stuttard
Joel White

We could still do with a few more people to help, not necessarily club members, so why not ask your family & friends to join us? If you/they want to be involved, simply go to the Team Registration page, select 'Drinks Station Marshal' (second on the list) & enter Group Code 'RRR 2014'. Once you've done that, please let me know that you've registered!  [David Emanuel]         

16th FEBRUARY 2014
FOR THOSE of you who don't do the Facebook-thing...following the remarkable club turnout at the Mad Dog 10K, Ronnie Quinn has started a campaign to get 100 RRRs in a race for the first time at this year's Royton Trail. The race takes place on Wednesday 9th July this year & the entry form is already available to print here. Come on, we can do this!  [David Emanuel]

THE 2014 'Run The Moors' Fell Race Series started with a nine-miler at Windy Hill in Littleborough this morning - I bet the improvement in weather was appreciated! With the final cross-country race on Saturday, some people doing long marathon training runs & a few injuries, it was always likely that RRR numbers would be well done to Des Thorpe & Roy Miller for flying the flag for the club. Great to see Des back fit & running well, as he finished 14th V45, 79th overall in 1:14:50 (not far behind my nemesis from the previous day's cross country, Ian Stainthorpe of Rochdale Harriers). Roy also produced a fine run as he came home in 1:45:18 for 35th M45, 220th overall. If you fancy getting involved in this race series - 11 mainly local races, best five scores to count - there's lots of information here.  [David Emanuel]      

14th FEBRUARY 2014
ANNABELLA GLOSTER has kindly agreed to deliver a 'First Aid for Runners' session for RRR members at Royton Cricket Club after training on Thursday 13th March. The session will start at 8.30pm & will concentrate on practical advice for dealing with incidents that can occur when we're out running together. We need an idea of numbers in advance, as Annabella will arrange for additional trainers to help out if needed. So if you would like to attend, please let me know as soon as possible!  [David Emanuel]  

13th FEBRUARY 2014

IF YOU haven't already entered the Greater Manchester Marathon on 6th April, or committed to working on the RRR Aid Station, then shame on you...but The Christie charity would like to hear from you! A few free places are on offer to club members for either the full marathon, 'Half & Half' relay or four-person relay, in return for a commitment to raise as much as you can (no minimum amount) for The Christie. Anyone interested should contact Fundraising Co-ordinator Charlie Rowen on 0161-9187425.  [David Emanuel]
12th FEBRUARY 2014
REMEMBER filling in an on-line survey from this website about your 2014 running plans? 55 club members did so & I'm very grateful that you took the time! The information provided has been very useful & already been used as the basis for regular communications to those expressing interest in the RRR Cup, Road Relays, Parkrun Pacing & Fell Race Grand Prix, whilst responses to the question "If you could change/improve one thing about RRR..." helped inform the agenda for the AGM. Replies have also allowed me to add to the 2014 marathons list & enabled us to recruit a few more volunteers for our Greater Manchester Marathon Drinks Station.

I thought now might be a good time to share some details of the other responses. For example, the average number of club championship races people intend to run is just over 11, which suggests that the incredible Mad Dog turnout may be repeated throughout the year! There was a wide range of replies to the question asking for your main goals for the year - from the very specific ("sub 3:30 marathon") to the more general ("to stay fit, healthy & injury free"). Many of you have set your sights on completing a first marathon or achieving PBs at various distances, while Simon Lake's plan is nicely balanced: "2014 miles in 2014". My favourite response was from Sarah Butler: "Finish my marathons with a big smile".

Only a few people responded to the question asking for "other running events or fundraising challenges", but they're all worthy of a mention. Simon Howard is planning "a couple of ultra marathons and the Tour of Skiddaw", Mark Oliver is using the Mad Dog 10K & Anglesey Half Marathon to raise funds for CRY (Cardiac Risk in the Young), Sarah Butler is aiming to run 1,000 runs in the year for Make A Wish Foundation & Chris Lowe is running the London Marathon for Save the Children. Kirsty White reports that some club members are planning to run an overseas marathon (not sure which one yet), while closer to home Ronnie Quinn says that a few are planning to run the Liverpool Half Marathon ("a band playing at every mile"). Colin Green announces that he'll be doing "100 mile Cotswolds Way challenge with Dave E in August" (nice of him to let me know!), while Mark Taylor lists about 20 different ultras & other extreme events. He';s going to be very busy this year!

Thanks again to everyone who completed the survey. I'll be using this approach to collect the views of club members on a regular basis, but please don't feel you have to wait if there's something that you think needs raising. Just send an e-mail any time!  [David Emanuel]       

8th FEBRUARY 2014
A FIRST outing for the 'RRR pacing team' at Oldham parkrun this morning seemed to work pretty well! Only three pacers were available, with Richard Fiddling & myself taking the 25-minute slot & Simon Howard going solo at 30 min pace. Richard & I were pretty content to run round (officially) in 24:53 & 24:54 respectively, but Simon was even more accurate with his remarkably precise 29:59. All good fun & an enjoyable way to get in an easy-paced run the day before a Club Championship race. The next pacing run is scheduled for 22nd March, the day before the Wilmslow Half Marathon - here's hoping for a few more pacers to turn out so that we can offer a bigger range of pace options. If you haven't already signed-up but are interested in being part of the team, please contact Dan Yarwood.  [David Emanuel]   

6th FEBRUARY 2014
IF you don't currently have the evening of Friday 21st February booked in your diary for the RRR Quiz Night, shame on you! Starting at 7.30pm at Royton Cricket Club, entry costs just £6 per head to include quiz entry, potato pie supper, stand up bingo & more. Non-members very welcome, as are prizes for the raffle (proceeds to Dr Kershaw's Hospice). As your guest quizmaster I'll be bringing plenty of experience - Mastermind, University Challenge, Who Wants To Be A Millionaire, Fifteen-to-One, I've watched them all. I'm thinking that this one will be like a cross between Sale of the Century, Bullseye & The Krypton Factor...  [David Emanuel]

TRANSFER NEWS: you may not have noticed, what with all the talk of Juan Mata, Yohan Cabaye & Arsenal buying that bloke with a broken back, but RRR just failed with a  sensational bid for Mo Farah in the January transfer window. Although it went down to the wire on deadline day, we were unable to agree personal terms - nothing to do with money, we just couldn't accept Farah's demands that we change the name of the club to 'Royton Mo Runners', that every member has to get a 'mobot' tattoo on their left bicep & that for three months of the year training nights have to move to altitude in Kenya. The committee's attention now turns to trying to secure a big-name signing in the summer - it seems that Paula Radcliffe is planning a comeback...  [David Emanuel]   

1st FEBRUARY 2014
A GOOD TURNOUT & some lively debate as always...thanks to everyone who ventured out on a pretty horrible night to attend the RRR AGM at Royton Cricket Club. Full minutes will be available on the (restricted access) Members Page in due course, but in the meantime here are some of the noteworthy announcements & decisions.

COMMITTEE CHANGES: Dave Phillips (President), Richard Fiddling (Treasurer) & George Meynell (Assistant Treasurer) have all stepped down from their roles - I'd like to add to the comments of our Chairman at the AGM & thank them all for their fantastic contributions to the success of the club over recent years. I'm delighted to confirm that June Allingan has agreed to become our new President, whilst Mark Taylor (Treasurer) & Sarah Collins (Assistant Treasurer) were elected unopposed to the two vacant committee positions. Welcome aboard!

FEES FOR 2014: the annual membership fee remains unchanged at £40 for first-claim members (£30 second claim). In order to align the RRR 'membership year' with England Athletics & the cricket club, this fee is due by 1st April. With many people now using online banking we'd really encourage members to pay by bank transfer (Sort Code 30-96-26, Account Number 01306698), but if not, please pay by cheque (payable to 'Royton Road Runners') rather than cash, to any member of the committee.

LONDON MARATHON PLACES: given the level of demand, new rules on entitlement to enter the ballot for the club's London Marathon places were voted in. Key points are that you must be a first-claim RRR member when you apply for a place at London; you must provide your rejection letter as proof; you should not have an existing 'good for age' access route; & if you win a place one year, you won't be allowed to enter the ballot in the following year. The rules will be published in full on this website in due course.

TRAINING GROUPS: the popularity of club training nights has resulted in some very large training groups & there was much discussion about the implications of this. These discussions will continue, but there are a number of 'quick fixes' which can be put in place immediately: everyone (experienced runners seem to be the worst offenders!)  should wear hi-vis clothing when running with the club on dark nights; at least one person in every group should carry a mobile phone in case of emergency; and I'll aim to compile a list of 'emergency contacts' of all club members which will be published on the Members Page. On that last point, let's start the process straight away - please could you complete this short form to provide your emergency contact details. Thank you!  [David Emanuel]            
23rd JANUARY 2014
FOR one week only the Wednesday night track session will start at 6.30 p.m. (and not 6.00 p.m.). This is to accommodate a few people who would otherwise struggle to get to this session at the normal start time ... this is because the planned session is a "marker session" for the Mad Dog race. Pretty much the times you run will give you an idea as to the time you can expect to run at the Mad Dog. We hope to see you there.

DETAILS of next month's RRR Quiz Night at Royton Cricket Club have now been confirmed. Kicking-off at 7.30pm on Friday 21st February, teams of up to five are invited along for an entertaining evening that will cost £6 per head to include the quiz, potato pie supper, stand-up bingo & plenty more. Non-members are very welcome & don't worry if you can't make up a team - just come along & we'll find a space for you! We'd also be very grateful for any prizes for the raffle, proceeds of which will go to Dr Kershaw's Hospice. Hope to see you there!  [David Emanuel]
22nd JANUARY 2014
AN E-MAIL has been sent to all RRR members today from Club Chairman Bryan Lawton: "The club currently faces a very unusual challenge. As most of you will know, both Richard Fiddling & George Meynell have done an excellent job for the club over recent years, with Richard as Club Treasurer & George as Assistant Treasurer. Unfortunately both have indicated their intention to stand down as of next week's AGM (7.30pm, Friday 31st January). Despite one or two sniffs of interest, no club member has yet stepped up to formally stand for either of these two posts. As things currently stand, the club has a potentially serious problem. We now have almost 130 members - there must be someone out there who wants to get more involved in the club & become part of the Committee in one of the two 'Treasurer' positions. If you are reading this & have the slightest interest, please don't hesitate to call me on 0161-6523881 to discuss. Both Richard & George will still be around to give support & guidance to the new post holders. This is a brilliant club with some brilliant people, please don't sit back & expect others to volunteer."    

16th JANUARY 2014
GIVEN the level of interest in the race, we are once again running a coach to the Mad Dog 10K on 9th February. This luxury vehicle will leave Royton at 8.30am, heading back from Southport at around 5.30/6.00pm after a little post-race 'refuelling'. There's a list up in the club changing rooms, but if it's easier please send an e-mail & I'll get your name added. Bernie Goodwin is getting tough & tells me that he needs definite numbers by the end of January - no 'maybes'. You have been warned!  [David Emanuel] 

15th JANUARY 2014
EVERY CLOUD...the fact that there was no South East Lancs League cross-country race in December means that the series now consists of three races, with best two to count for individual & team prizes. Good news for anyone who has not yet run - taking part in both the remaining events at Leigh (18th January) & Boggart Hole (15th February) will put you in the running for individual prizes as well as enabling you to contribute to the RRR team points. Look forward to seeing plenty of you at Leigh on Saturday - a race which will hopefully see the grand unveiling of the brand new RRR gazebo with built-in changing area, showers, jacuzzi & cocktail bar. Some of that previous sentence may be factually incorrect...  [David Emanuel]

ENTRIES are now being taken for the Dovestone Diamond, Race 7 in this year's RRR Club Championship. Colin Green, now officially the designated Race Director & therefore personally responsible for anything that goes wrong - not that it will! - points out that, with a strict limit of 250 runners & much interest already, early entry is highly recommended.  [David Emanuel]

COLIN has also recently joined the RRR team planning to run the Snowdonia Marathon in October & advises that this race is also filling up fast. If you're thinking of giving it a go, probably worth getting in before it's too late!  [David Emanuel]

DATE for your diary - we'll be holding an RRR Quiz Night at Royton Cricket Club on Friday 21st February. More details to follow, but please make a note of the date!  [David Emanuel]   

8th JANUARY 2014

THE RRR ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING takes place at Royton Cricket Club on Friday 31st January, starting at 7.30pm. All members are encouraged to attend if possible - amongst many important matters to discuss & vote on, this is the time for election & re-election of members of the committee. Nominations received so far:
   CHAIRMAN: Bryan Lawton (proposed by David Emanuel, seconded Dave Phillips)
   VICE CHAIRMAN: Stuart Carroll (proposed Bernie Goodwin, seconded George Meynell)
   SECRETARY: Brian Moore (proposed Bryan Lawton, seconded David Emanuel)
   SOCIAL SEC: Bernie Goodwin (proposed Richard Fiddling, seconded Brian Moore)
   COMMUNICATIONS: David Emanuel (proposed Stuart Carroll, seconded Bryan Lawton)

As will be obvious from the list above, both our Treasurer (Richard Fiddling) & Assistant Treasurer (George Meynell) have decided to step down from the committee this year. Thanks to both for all the work they've done on our behalf! Whilst we're obviously very keen to receive nominations for these two vacant roles, you can nominate someone for any of the roles above simply by sending an e-mail - although please check with them first to confirm that they are happy to be nominated! These & any other items for the AGM agenda should be submitted no later than Friday 24th January. Richard is happy to talk to anyone about what the Treasurer role entails & will provide support & training as required - click here for contact details.

THE evening of the AGM will also be the closing date for entry to this year's RRR Cup competition & the last opportunity to express an interest in being part of the first RRR teams to compete in the Northern Athletics Road Relays in Heaton Park on 15th March - although you can register for these events now by completing the 2014 club survey, as many members have already done (thank you!). We plan to make the draw for the First Round of the RRR Cup once the AGM has closed, whilst supper is being eaten, just to add a little more excitement to the evening! If you have any questions about the AGM or want any more information about committee nominations, please get in touch.  [David Emanuel]   
1st JANUARY 2014
to all Royton Road Runners! 2013 was quite a year for the club, starting with more than 90 people turning out for the 10th anniversary run in February, through to a spectacular Summer Ball & ending with our biggest ever Presentation Night. Somewhere in between all the celebrations we were voted Ronhill Club of the Month in Athletics Weekly magazine. It was also a remarkable record-breaking year - a new club marathon record for Ian McBride (2:27:35), several UK best V80 times at 5K & 10K for Lou Gilchrist, record participation in club championship races & cross-country events, a record field for the Royton Trail & the biggest membership we've ever had. And that's not to mention the continued success of the RunEngland groups, the introduction of the RRR Cup, the successful Manchester Marathon Drinks Station led by Annabella Gloster, fantastic fundraising for Dr Kershaw's Hospice, more legendary club coach trips, the trip to Amsterdam, individual & team prizes at various events, the valuable contributions of Brian Moore at the track & group leaders on club training nights...I could go on for hours (& usually do).

So we're well set for another fabulous year in 2014. If you haven't already done so, please complete this brief online questionnaire to help us with club plans for the coming year (including the RRR Cup & possible road relays). Make sure you get your entries in for the early club races, especially those that are filling up fast such as Mad Dog & Wilmslow. Finally, if you didn't pick up a 10th anniversary medal at the Presentation Night, please see Stuart Carroll at club training nights to grab one whilst stocks last!  [David Emanuel]