News reports - February 2020

23rd February 2020: 25 year-old club record goes at Sale Indoor Open

The penultimate meeting in the Sale Harriers Indoor series was well supported by Southport Waterloo athletes at Sportcity on Sunday. In fact, 11 took part achieving several SBs, PBs and one very impressive new club record. With the British Indoor Championships on in Glasgow and the England Age Group Indoor Championships in Sheffield, officials were at a premium but there was no shortage of athletes. Incredibly, there were 146 200m entrants - which means a lot of races on a 4-lane track! It all made for a full and exciting day's athletics.

In age group order:-

Amber Hughes was the fastest Under 15 Girl over 60m hurdles running 9.58, just 4 hundredths outside her PB set at Sportcity in January. in the flat 60m she ran 8.22.

Under 15 Lauren Byrne equalled her 10.83 60m hurdles PB, to the hundredth! And she cleared 1m 35 in the high jump.

Under 15 Adam Byrne also cleared 1m 35 in the high jump and long jumped 3m 57.

Under 15 Nathan Fitzgerald was competing again after running at Sheffield on Saturday. On this occasion he ran 7.81 for 60m and 25.26 for 200m

Under 15 Marcus Burgess had his first outing of the year. He ran 8.17 in his 60m race, an impressive PB given that his previous best was 8.93 from 2018. He also putt the 4k shot 9m 15, another PB, to finish 2nd in the competition.

Under 17 Sam Coupland featured in the pole vault competition which he won with a clearance of 3m 51. His previous best was 3m 31 at Vault Manchester in early February; that's an increase of 20 cms in less than a month and beats the previous club record of 3m 50 set by John Eyers back in 1995. In fact, no Southport Waterloo athlete, male or female, has ever vaulted higher! Sam also ran a 200m, winning his race in 24.51, another PB.

Under 17 Drumayne Moore cleared 2m 65 in the pole vault competition and he long jumped 5m 00.

Under 20 Luke Suarez competed in the long jump with a best clearance of 5m 86.

Snr Graham Boreham ran an excellent 600m in 1:27.62, just two hundredths of a second off his club record! He then went on to run a 200m in a very creditable 24.96.

Chris Burgess ran 25.81 for his 200m race and 7.88 for the 60m sprint.

Ian Fitzpatrick came along to run an indoor 600m and crossed the line in 1:44.12.

Full results

22nd/23rd February 2020: England Indoor Championships

Report updated following more complete results. Five of our junior athletes travelled to the EIS in Sheffield over the weekend for the England U15 / U17/ U20 Nat'l Indoor Championships.

On Day 1, Sam Coupland competed in the Under 17 high jump competition clearing a best of 1m 82. The standard was impressive, however; and you needed to clear 1m 96 or higher to get into the medals. The medallists at Sheffield head up the national rankings so far this year. Sam himself is currently lying 11th in the national list with 1m 85 from the Northern Indoor Championships.

Under 15 Nathan Fitzgerald ran 7.69 to finish 3rd in his 60m heat, making it through to the 2nd Round where he ran even faster, crossing the line in 7.68. Both times are his fastest this year.

Abi Bamber featured in the Under 17 Women's 300m event where she ran 42.99, less than a second off her PB, in her first race over that distance since the Northern outdoor champs at Wavertree last August. In fact her time was an indoor PB!

On Day 2, Under 17 Bill Steel, a recent transfer in to the club, put the 5k shot a massive 13m 45. That was outside the medals but Bill is currently ranked 7th in the UK so far this year.

Under 20 Ben Apps competed in the long jump where his best was 6m 26.

Full results

22nd February 2020: Nat'l XC champs held at a rain-saturated Wollaton Park

The English National Cross Country Championships, once the climax of the season, are now just the first of 3 national championships held over 4 weeks.  With SWAC runners selected for the Inter Counties event (March 7th) and the English Schools Champs (March 14th,Liverpool),  we decided not to enter junior teams for the  'National'  on Feb 22nd.

Olivia Logan was our only young competitor. After spending the previous week at a Triathlon training camp in nearby Loughborough, an 11.00am start was no problem. In her first year in the U17 age group she came a creditable 27th.

The original Men's team of 6 was down to 2 on the day due to injuries and work.   Arriving after Olivia's race had finished, they found a great venue affected by the recent rain. But on the day the rain held off, leaving many muddy areas, some very wet, but nice conditions for spectators (with boots). The Senior race over 12k was won by Northern Champion Callum Johnson in 43.26.  Andy Kershaw was 237th in 50.33 and Richard Talbot 1110th in 64.21 in a field of 1715. 

Full results

20th February 2020: Success of Southport Strollers, now to become an independent running club

In 2018, Southport Waterloo established the Southport Waterloo Strollers to address a gap in the Southport running community.  Sarah Pickerill was instrumental in setting up this group as a run leader, creating a dedicated team of support and promoting a group that meets on Thursday evening at Dunes.  As this group swelled, additional qualified run leaders were added and a Tuesday morning session was also introduced.  


Successfully introducing people to running through initiatives like the “Couch to 5km” the ethos of the Southport Strollers is not to compete but more focused on the social / fitness benefits of running.  This group has now grown to over 70 people and having invested a lot of effort in promoting the ”Strollers“ brand that is now well recognised within the running community locally. 


Southport Strollers will shortly become a running club in its own right.  Southport Waterloo will maintain a close relationship and we’ve agreed our members will be able to attend Southport Strollers run sessions free of charge.   Southport Strollers members will also be entitled to discounted Southport Waterloo AC membership allowing those who wish to then compete in cross country, fell, trial or on the track to do so.


We wish Sarah and the team at Southport Strollers all the best for this next stage, it’s certainly been an amazing journey so far.  Our training web page has been updated to highlight the strollers options for our members.

15th February 2020: Parbold Hill race reaches 50th birthday

This year marked an important milestone for the Parbold Hill Race, originally tried as a ‘friendly’ in 1970 between local clubs who were invited. Harriers vs cyclists, about 40 took part.

The first official race was in 1971 and was organised by Derek Dalton with family and club mates at Liverpool Boundary Harriers as it was then. Derek’s son, Andy, a current member of Skelmersdale Boundary Harriers has been involved with every Parbold Hill race, along with Jane Woodburn and the rest of the team, to make it a successful annual event.

Two people who ran in the first race took part in the 50th. Dennis Adelsberg (89) from Skelmersdale Boundary Harriers and Stan Cottier from Liverpool Running Club. Albert( Bertie) Knowles, the race starter this year also competed in the first race.

In 1971 the team prize was won by Sutton Harriers (now St. Helens) and running in the team was our club president, Steve James. He also ran in several more of the early races and recalls that the race route has changed very little over the years – with only slight differences at the start and finish.

Due to the threat of storm Dennis, there was a possibility of race cancellation this year, but fortunately the worst of the weather held off until part way through when the wind and rain started. With 60mm of rainfall the week before, on already wet ground, running conditions for the 428 runners were the most challenging seen for a long time with tough stretches of deep mud and water-logged fields for a large part of the 6.7 mile course.

It has always been a very popular race attracting runners from far and wide, with entries selling out very quickly. To mark the occasion a commemorative programme was given to all runners. The race entry fee back in 1972 was 15p (bargain!) and 1st prize was £3.00.

Nine SWAC members ran today: Steve Wilkinson 53:03, Tracey Allen 59:36, Neil Silcock 1:06:17, Paul Hill l:08:06, Clive James 1:08:52, Carole James 1:12;21, Sue Stewart 1:24:04, Catherine McElhinney & Caroline King 1:46:02.

First man in was Jon-Jo Doherty, St. Helens Sutton, 43:43. First lady in was Katherine Klunder, Chorley Athletic & Tri, 53:44.

Well done to everyone, especially Carole and Sue on winning their vet classes. Many thanks to the Parbold Hill race team and Skelmersdale Boundary Harriers for a great well organised race and for their information and kind use of the photographs. Looking forward to the next 50 years!



Photo of an early race start, courtesy of Skem Boundary Harriers, for 'oldies' to reminisce


8th February 2020: Monty Barr wins Mid Lancs U13 XC title

22 of our club runners took part in the penultimate fixture of this season's Mid Lancs Cross Country League held at Lawson's Ground, Blackpool. This is a pretty flat course with, for a change, very little mud today. The main feature was the strengthening winds in advance of storm Ciara which made the taking down of club tents more 'interesting'!

With many of the final league positions already determined, overall numbers were a little down but still very well supported with, for example, 60 finishing in the Under 11 Boys' race and 248 Senior Men. Monty Barr was the run-away winner of the Under 13 Boys' race, Emily Dean was 4th Under 13 Girl and our veteran men did very well.

Joseph Cooper ran in the Under 11 Boys' race and was 23rd on the day of the 60 finishers; so a very good run. He ran the 2kms in 8:59.

As mentioned, Emily Dean ran in the Under 13 Girls' race and finished a very good 5th of 44 finishers in 10:28 for the 2.5 Kms.

48 completed the Under 13 Boys' race over 3 kms and Monty Barr quickly emerged as leader and then pulled away from the chasing group to win, 7 secs clear of the 2nd placed runner, confirming his individual victory for the season as a whole. Luke Ward also had a good run, 11th in 12:03.

With no Under 15s today, the next club interest was in the Under 17 Women's race where Freya Walsh ran, finishing 11th of 21 in 19:45 for the 4 kms, 2 lap course.

Next, we had just two runners in the Senior Women's race. We have good numbers of active senior women running road races but cross country running doesn't seem to attract many. And with the Mad Dog 10K in Southport the following day many would be giving that priority. Michelle Spencer finished 52nd of 132 Senior Women in 30:39 for the 6 kms. Carole James was 61st in 31:25.

We did have a good number in the Senior Men's race, always a popular one with 248 finishers today. David Hamilton was first home for the club 1st MV50, 18th overall in 36:57. Rob McGrath was next, 3rd MV50 and 47th overall in 39:13, Peter Roome, 67th in 40:09, John Sprackland 78th in 40:51, Anthony Pratt, 106th in 42:24, and Richard Talbot was the final team counter, 146th in 44:22. The team finished 9th on the day. Other finishers were Neil Adshead, 44:32, Martyn Smith, 44:58, Rob Johnson, 45:03, Carl McMahon, 46:15, Neil Silcock, 49:06, Michael Cunningham, 49:28, Clive James, 50:28, Lee Coupland, 59:05, and Ian Pike, 60:06. David, Rob, Peter and John were 3rd MV40 team and should take team medals for the season. And with a 1st, 4th and 7th positions, David, Rob and Peter finished 1st MV50 team. That secures their overall victory for the season.

Full results


2nd February 2019: Renee Adams, new kid on the block

Five of our young athletes competed in the EIS indoor stadium, Sheffield, on Sunday in the Northern Athletics Under 13 / Under 15 Indoor Championships. They produced 4 PBs and, in the 3rd to last of nearly 90 races of the day, Renee Adams came though to take a Northern medal in the final of the under 13 Girls' 60m. That was her 6th race of the day and to finish in such exalted company with a medal as a first year Under 13 shows the potential she has hinted at in Under 11 competition.

Despite winter illness, the meeting was very well attended although I believe total numbers were a few down on last year.We had up to 8 heats in some events, going though three 2nd round semi finals and on to finals which, for those entered in more than one track event, made for a demanding day; both physically and mentally. Amber Hughes, an almost certain medallist, was one of those who missed these championships due to illness. I'm sure she'll make up for it in the outdoor season - or perhaps even earlier.

Under 15 Adam Byrne competed in both 800m and the 4K shot. He ran 2:50.96 for the 4-lap race and put the shot 7m 17, a new personal best.

Under 15 Lauren Byrne ran 10.99 for the 60m hurdles, cleared 1m 40 in the high jump and put the shot 8m 13, also a new PB for her.

Under 15 Nathan Fitzgerald competed in both 60m and 200m. In the short sprint event, he was 2nd in his heat in 7.81, and 3rd in the semi in 7.90. just missing out on a place in the final. In the 200m race, he was 2nd in his heat in 25.05 and 3rd in the semi in 24.83 - a new PB - to qualify for the final where he ran 25.32.

Sierra Jalloh competed in the Under 15 Girls' 200m where she too made it through to the Final. She won her heat in 27.08, was 3rd in the 2nd round in a season's best time of 26.79 and was 5th in the final in 27.02.

Finally, Renee Adams made an impressive entrance onto the Northern athletics stage in the 60m and 200m races. As a first year Under 13, and even before competing in league competition which doesn't start for a few months yet, she has competed in her first Northern championships and taken her first Northern medal. What is even more remarkable is that this was her first competition over both race distances!

In the 200m she won her heat in 28.50 secs, ran exactly the same time to win the semi and was just run out of the medals finishing 4th in the final in 28.79. Over 60m, she won her heat in 8.62, won her semi in 8.65 secs and powered though in the final to take the 3rd place Northern bronze medal. With 35 girls challenging for success, this was no easy medal to win and Renee gets her first entry on the club HonoursBoard.

Well done to all those competing here, who will take valuable experience from the competition.

Full results

And Sam Coupland improved his Pole Vault PB on Saturday at Vault Manchester, sportcity. He cleared 3m 31.

1st February 2020: M'side Schools XC Champs held in Arrowe Park

The county Schools XC Champs are a 'must do' for those wishing to represent their County at the English Schools National Cross Country Championships to be held this year in Sefton Park, Liverpool, on 14th March. The first four in each of the Junior, Inter and Senior races are automatically selected with other places awarded by selectors. English Schools teams comprise a maximum of 12 athletes, of which only 8 are allowed to compete. The first 6 finishers in each team race counting towards the team competition. And for Merseyside Year 7s - not eligible for the National Championships - there is an inter-counties match with Cheshire at Ellesmere Port on a date to be announced. The first 15 to finish at Arrowe Park will be invited to take part.

Arrowe Park on Saturday was not an inviting place. Gratefully, it wasn't raining but the location was very exposed to the strong to gale force winds and the runners had to cope with some fairly muddy conditions.

I think about 9 Southport Waterloo runners were there representing their school and borough. Apologies for anyone missed.

Tiana Chambers was 7th in the Year 7 Girls' race over 2.4 kms.

In the Year 7 Boys' race, Luke Ward was 7th running over the same distance. Stephen Morgan was 12th and Daniel Jones 27th.

Emily Dean and Lizzie Wake ran as Junior Girls. Emily secured her ticket to the English Schools Nat'l final finishing 4th for the 2.9 kms course and Lizzie was 15th.

Both Olivia Logan and Lucy Milling secured their selection as Inter Girls, Olivia finishing 2nd and Lucy 5th.

And finally, Felix Anderson was 22nd in the Inter Boys race run on a 5.8 kms course.

I believe several of our club runners will also have picked up medals as part of their Sefton team; but the results so far published don't include team results.

Full results

Junior Boy Monty Barr attends school in Lancashire and so he took part in that county schools championship at Witton Park on Saturday 18th January. He finished 5th and so will be selected to represent Lancashire at Sefton Park and he led his West Lancs borough team to win the Junior Boys team event.