Wallasey Athletic Club held their annual Christmas Handicap last Saturday. With the frost and ice thick on the ground after a cold night it was a great relief when it thawed out for the race, and with no trace of fog conditions were better than expected. Although there were some notable absences, twenty-seven athletes turned out for this race.
Once all the athletes had started the officials, had to watt patiently until the limit runner came into view, heralding the start of a rather busy period as the rest of the athletes followed in closely.
Margaret Ashcroft, with a two-minute handicap was the first to finish, followed by John Jones with a 7 minute handicap. Club coach Carl Gee was third with John Young in 4th place showing more of his old form. Second girl was Barbara Banks in 5th place with Dave Adair close 6th. Neil Hampson and Mike Roche beat Ramsey Hewson to 7th and 8th places with Robin Tarrant close behind in 10th place. Peter Emery, Peter Lewis and Dave Lockley all with the same time in 12th, 12th and 13th place. Whilst close together were Ian Wilson, John Warrilow and Bob McCaig Jnr, and credited with 14th, 15th and 16th places, Mark Aldrige beat Mike Mason by 3 seconds for 17th and 18th places, with Mike Potter, Barry Smith, John Wright and Mick Firth providing some excitement all within 5 seconds of each other in 19th to 22nd place. Mike McNamee finished 23rd with Alan Keating running below form in 24th. Tony Parry, Brian Chalton, and Mike Teehan brought up the field in 25th, 26th and 27th positions. Actual fastest time was John Wright but his handicap put him back in 21st place.
After the race and the prizes had been claimed, club members were treated to hot soup, cakes, tea and biscuits; by the lady members of the club.
Club Members are asked to note that on January 2 the Cheshire championships will be run near Warrington, A coach will be organised by the club for competitors, but don't neglect to train over holiday period.