By Richard Ousey


The Welsh Castles Relay (WCR) was back with a bang over a gorgeous sun-drenched June weekend after three years in pandemic-induced hibernation.

For the first time ever Sale Harriers fielded three teams – Open, Ladies and Vets – meaning a new cohort of runners who would previously have been too slow, insufficiently fast to make the cut had the opportunity to participate.

I was one of this lucky cohort and I’m sure I wasn’t the only one feeling a mix of trepidation and excitement as the Harrier massive travelled west in a road-based flotilla of minibuses, cars, Tesla and – playing the role of Rainey bus - the luxurious Goulden camper van. 

My wife Carla, a WCR veteran, had told me what an amazing time I’d have, and this was confirmed when, with impeccable timing, our arrival at the end of Stage 2 – Penygroes to Criccieth coincided with Jason Bowers powering down the grassy finishing straight to register first in the veteran teams category. Serendipity would also be my friend on Day 2 when whilst marshalling right at the end of Stage 13 – Crossgates to Builth Wells – I witnessed an awe-inspiring burst of pace from Phil Richardson powering to a stage victory and the prestigious yellow T-Shirt after a hilly battle royale with the Kent runner.

There was nothing ‘Araf’ about Nicholas Barry as he triumphed on Stage 7 – Dolgellau to Dinas Mawddwy nor Sian Rowley - first in the Ladies team category on uber-hilly Stage 8 to Foel. And to put the icing, candles, decorative figures and green and red sprinkles on an amazing day Sophie Wood then produced a stunning stage win smashing the previous course record by over seven minutes.

Saturday night saw many Harriers sleeping in, or camping around a Bunkhouse a few miles outside Newtown.  I lost at Monopoly to a 4-year-old (Revenge will be sooooo sweet Rozhdestvenskaya Jr.)

Day 2 would see an incredible effort from our Ladies team with four – yes FOUR! – successive wins in the Ladies team category courtesy of Alice Wright –Stage 14 (1st lady overall), Jenny Fox – Stage 15, Laura Barber – Stage 16 and Jenny Southworth – Stage 17.  Stage 17 also saw Steven McCarron triumph with a veteran stage win. As the gap on ladies team leaders, Les Croupiers, shrank to a mere 13 minutes. Sale celebrated while Les Croups frantically checked the refund policy on their ‘Victory Meal’ restaurant reservation. Whilst we did ultimately have to settle for second place, our Ladies team were to be crowned Mountain Queens for the first time since 2014, storming to an impressive 14-minute victory. Congratulations to our mountain queens Laura Martin, Rachael Rozhdestvenskaya, Sophie Wood, Anne Chinoy, Alice Wright and Laura Barber.

All of our teams performed brilliantly, finishing fifth or above in every category we entered as well as triumphing in the – little known - ‘Best Manchester team’ in the Open Category.

Massive thanks to Glenn Savage (Vets), Chris Donnelly (Opens) and Richie Edwards (Ladies) for excelling in the role of team managers and dealing coolly with all the attendant stresses.

Full results here.

Photo Gallery

Professional photos by Les Stills.

WCR 2022

Match report


Last year was a dress rehearsal of Athletics emerging from the restrictions and fears of the 2020 outbreak. I wasn't sure how far we had come from those days but Saturday confirmed that the NAL league was a good idea and Sale were emerging from a difficult few years having lost some veteran leaders within the club. There is nothing as good as a track and field meet with most of the places filled and the result in doubt right until the end but you're in with a chance. There really is something for everyone in this sport, whatever your natural body type but after that, good preparation and special human qualities are needed. We can't all become champions but we can benefit immensely from the journey required to perform in these events.

 Things were looking promising from early events on the track where a double victory in the 400m Hurdles banked some points. It is especially pleasing to see athletes who not long ago were in the YDL Lower coming through to impress at Senior level. Looking across towards the Pole vault the B vaulter was a vet 55 who has passed on his genes and advice to a young vaulter with great promise who would appear in the Women’s Pole vault later. Next on the track was a young man with unbridled enthusiasm who will fill vacant spots when asked because he has that selfless character and team spirit to do so. He took on the High Jump too.

I sat near the water jump for the Men’s Steeplechase where last year our A runner took a ducking, brushed himself down and carried on. Unsurprisingly here he is again giving his best. These qualities go beyond Athletics and serve us well in life. The Women’s Shot was taking place just near that bend. The tall powerful figure warming up I knew well. In 2009 she lined up in the City Games following Bolt to race against Christina Orughu and Debbie Ferguson to sprint impressively. After those giddy heights things didn’t go well but like the 'chaser she dusted herself down and came back. Now she is a Shot Putter. She won the event.

The events were briefly punctuated by a Special Award ceremony for a Special Sale athlete who is now busy with James Bailey and Dave Marsh in managing the team. Club Secretary Frank Cordingley presented her with a richly deserved lifetime membership award. Lucy Evans has been a faithful athlete to the club. A Welsh International Sprinter who proudly wore her Sale vest when competing in America when she was at University there. Her Sale vest was recognised by an official there who asked 'Is that a famous Sale Harriers Manchester England vest?' Lucy raced in many places but revealed that a p.b. was set once at an event at Leigh so don't think events outside major championships are not important.

The meeting continued with a blistering performance from a young woman who has just finished at University and now lives in the South West. She has concentrated on her main sport- Modern Pentathlon. Keep an eye out for her at movie premieres too.

We have an U20 sprinter who is inside the world junior standard time whilst currently heading the rankings for 200m.She ran the 100 in just outside her P.B. You would not realise as she is not at all arrogant, which is a quality that will serve her well.

Sale Javelin throwers were one and two in the competition. This event doesn't always get the limelight that track events get. Can you imagine how difficult it was for throwers to train for their event during the lockdown? No chance of popping out to the nearest field for a bit of practice when you are capable of almost 60m.

Our top male sprinters received the accolade of being named amongst the best performances of the meeting; both going below 11 secs. Congratulations

At the time of writing the eventual result had not been published or confirmed but it was very very close between Sale and Liverpool. I have taken the approach of illustrating the variety of athletes that it takes to compete well as a team and deliberately not named people because everyone counts in attempting to win the event. You can look up performances later.

The future looks promising for this team under the relatively new leadership of Lucy Evans, James Bailey and Dave Marsh. They should be commended for their energy and commitment in the time consuming task of trying to fill every event with athletes as many factors compete for athletes’ time.

All the results can be found here (we came 2nd after Liverpool).

photos such as the ones shown will be in the next Harrier magazine or if you can’t wait that long look here


D.E.Greenwood   Ernie


Fechin Mc Cormick


Lucy and frank

Congratulations to Lucy Evans who was awarded Sale Harriers highest honour of Life Membership by club secretary Frank Cordingley during the club's hosting of its National Athletics League match at Sportcity recently.

Every club, community and family expects members to contribute to its life and success. It's a social responsibility! Sale Harrier's highest honour of Life membership is awarded to wholly exceptional members who dedicate a substantial part of their lives to the club.

Among the club's founding fathers, Dick Wilson was recognised after more than 40 years; Andy Wilson was recognised for 30 years’ service, his brother Walter for a similar number of years, Robert Watts who joined the club in 1921 was awarded Life membership for 30 years as club secretary and Vice-President, Reuben Robertshaw, father of club legend Alan Robertshaw was awarded Life membership for almost 30 years and more recently Harold Wilson, secretary for nearly 40 years, was awarded Life membership with his brother Walter who, between them, had given 171 years of service to Sale Harriers.

Lucy Evans joined Sale Harriers in 1996 aged just 14 and has represented the club brilliantly as a sprint athlete for 22 years until she retired aged 36. She’s arguably represented Sale Harriers on the track more than any other athlete in the club’s history - in the Young Athletes League, UKWAL (Premier), Jubilee Cup and Northern Premier League.

After she retired, her commitment to Sale Harriers continued and she took on the role of women's team manager in the National Athletics League, committed to return Sale Harriers to the top levels of British athletics.

Lucy was a key part of the women's team that won the unprecedented number of UKWAL Premier League titles between 2004-2010 and she was a key team member who represented Sale Harriers in the European Clubs Cup across Europe.

A Sale Harrier to the core, she's always proudly worn her club vest at all these national and internationals competitions, British Championships, Olympic Trials, Manchester City Games and competitions in Europe and the USA.

Among her most memorable days as a Sale Harrier was when she ran two PBs of 11.61 for the 100m and 23.96 for the 200m, the first time she broke 24.00 sec. She ended her career in 2018 when she became the World W35 100m & 200m Champion at the World Masters Championships in Spain and her 200m time of 25.19 ranked her No.1 W35 in the World that year. She's lost count of the number of times she’s represented Wales.



Great Manchester Run Junior and Mini Runs

This year the Great Manchester Run was yet again a huge success bringing in runners from near and far to enjoy our great city. The city hosted the event with typical Manchester warmth and style with elite wheelchair, womens and mens 10k events along with junior and mini runs and a half marathon thrown in for good measure. The mens half marathon was won by the legend that is Chris Thompson who sailled across the line in 1:04:29 at the age of 41. In the womens race Sarah Webster, sister of our very own Tim Kennedy ran superbly to win in 1:16:41. Yet again an over 40 year old.

In the elite womens race we were not disapointed, with a stunning field including Charlotte Purdue, Stef Twell and Sarah Hall, but was won in style by Hellen Obiri with Eilish McColgan snapping at her heals for a great finish on Deansgate. Sale Harrier RACHAEL ROZHDESTVENSKAYA, who was overjoyed to be selected for the elite race ran a great race finishing in 39:17.

Following on from the elite races came the hourdes of mass participation entries in wave after wave of runners, joggers and walkers.

The following Sale Harriers took part.


results 2


 results 1



On the Saturday many Sale Harrier youngsters enjoyed the junior and mini runs which took place at Sportcity in Manchester.

Junior 1

Junior 2

Thanks to the many volunteers who helped on the Saturday and the Sunday, particularly Morris Jefferson who tirelessly motivates the marshalls without whom the event would not have become the success that it has. Well done.


See the gallery below.












Peter Shaw

The YDL is a national league for U13 & U15 boys and girls and, prior to Covid, Sale were North-West Premier, North of England and National Champions. In recent years our youngsters won eleven northern and three national titles. On Saturday the 21st of May 2022 they took part in a NW Premier match at Longford Park.


Our Harrier tradition was upheld in the middle distance events with excellent performances against strong opposition. JAMES O'BRIEN was our star performer with 2 individual victories. The girl's 1200m was the highlight of the day with OONAGH MC MANUS and BEA SOPER winning their events with Grade 1 performances. Further victories came from ALEX FRASER, DAN OAKES, SIENNA JONES, LOLA RICHARDSON and GRACE HILL. IZZY HALL had an excellent run to finish 2nd over 1500m whilst FINLAY GODDARD and HANNAH SQUIBBS ran PB's.

Lily Oldale

Our best performances in the field events came from LILY OLDALE who competed in four events and won the javelin with a Grade 1 performance of 41m which broke Shelley Holdroyd's long standing U15 Sale Harriers record from 1987. Our other field events winners were MARIA RAYKOVA, PANAGIS ZAPANTIS and CALUM PARK whilst JOSHUA DOYLE was 2nd .

After two matches Wirral are in 1st place with Sale equal 2nd with Preston on league points (though Preston have more total match points).

A massive thanks to CARL WORTHINGTON who again team managed the boys and girls on his own, to parents, officials, coaches and, of course ERNIE GREENWOOD, the club's even faithful and reliable photographer.