Blaydon Race

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The Blaydon Race is a 5.9 mile athletics race from Newcastle upon Tyne to Blaydon, in England, that is steeped in local tradition. It takes place on June 9 every year and starts off with the singing of The Blaydon Races -- with the words as the basis for the race.

The actual race was the inspiration for Dr James Dewar of Blaydon Harriers, who organised the first 24 races starting in 1981. In the early years, the race attracted around 250 entries, but by 2004 a record of 4,000 people took part with more than 600 other hopefuls usually rejected.

The 25th anniversary of the race was run by the Blaydon Harriers in 2005 as the "Nike Jim Dewar Blaydon Race" in memory of James Dewar, who died in June 2004 just 2 days after the running of the 24th event.

The task of organising the race was guaranteed, with very heavy hearts, by other Blaydon Harrier stalwarts, and the event is now becoming more and more difficult to organise as its popularity means that the 4000 entry limit is now reached within hours of the race entry forms becoming available. The task is not made any easier by the fact that the race runs through some of the busiest roads in Tyneside during the early evening rush hour - close cooperation between local councils, police, and local residents ensures that everyone still manages to have a great night out.

To be fair to all, the organisers allocate 2000 entries to online entrants, with another 2000 being available by post to allow those with limited internet access to have an equal chance to enter. In 2010, the 2000 online entries were all snapped up within a few hours of entries opening. The local postman even asked for help from Santa Claus to carry all the mailbags for the postal applications!

Each year, the event adopts a local Charity - many thousands of pounds have been raised for them each year.

The 2014 and 2015 events were sponsored by the sports retailer Start Fitness.

Such was the demand in a few days in 2010, the event website became overloaded within a day of entries being announced. In response, the organisers quickly made alternative sites and

In keeping with the local flavour of this race, a lot of the instructions for entering, together with subsequent information mailed to competitors, is written in local Geordy Dialect. Some translations follow:

'Divvent wurri if ya moovin withoot ya legs waakin' : don't worry if you find yourself moving without trying to.

'Gan canny pet' : please take care.

'Wu wivvent charge ye owt extra or tyek any cut from it' : we will pass on to our charity everything you donate.

Past winners[edit]

Lads and Lasses[edit]

Lads Lasses
Year Name Club / Country Time Name Club / Country Time
1981 Mike McLeod Elswick Harriers 26:27 H Boyes Morpeth Harriers 34:10
1982 K Forster Saltwell Harriers 25:16 H Boyes Morpeth Harriers 31:39
1983 K Forster Gateshead Harriers 25:59 M Dodsworth Houghton Harriers 31:30
1984 K Forster Gateshead Harriers 25:18 P McFarland Claremont RR 32:05
1985 B Rushworth Sunderland Harriers 27:36 Jill Hunter Blaydon Harriers 32:10
1986 Mike McLeod Elswick Harriers 26:35 Jill Hunter Blaydon Harriers 31:13
1987 A Richardson S Shields Harriers 27:59 Jill Hunter Blaydon Harriers 29:56
1988 P Cuskin Jarrow & Hebburn AC 25:35 Jill Hunter Blaydon Harriers 28:03
1989 Mike McLeod Elswick Harriers 25:24 L Harding Houghton Harriers 29:59
1990 Mike McLeod Elswick Harriers 26:46 Veronique Marot LeedsCity 29:51
1991 P Campbell Sunderland Harriers 32:14 K Mitchell Tynedale Harriers 37:24
1992 Mike McLeod Elswick Harriers 27:59 L Marr Tynedale Harriers 32:22
1993 Mike McLeod Elswick Harriers 27:53 N Brown Tynedale Harriers 32:14
1994 Mike McLeod Elswick Harriers 29:14 K Mitchell Tynedale Harriers 37:24
1995 B Rushworth Sunderland Harriers 26:52 S Allen Houghton Harriers 33:05
1996 B Rushworth Sunderland Harriers 27:37 S Morley Jarrow & Hebburn AC 33:00
1997 M Hudspith Morpeth Harriers 27:24 S Griffiths Cramlington AC 32:13
1998 Carl Thackery Hallamshire Harriers 27:25 Birhan Dagne Essex Ladies 31:18
1999 Julius Kimtai Kenya 27:15 Birhan Dagne Essex Ladies 31:04
2000 Julius Kimtai Kenya 26:35 Birhan Dagne Essex & Woodford 31:18
2001 Julius Kimtai Kenya 26:51 Karen Hind Gateshead Harriers 31:18
2002 Julius Kimtai Kenya 26:19 Yelena Burykina Russia 29:34
2003 Tesfaye Eticha Switzerland 26:25 Yelena Burykina Russia 29:18
2004 Julius Kimtai Kenya 27:15 Miriam Wangari Kenya 30:51
2005 Simon Tonui Kenya 26:43 Catherine Mutwa Birchfield 31:20
2006 Patrick Makau Kenya 26:13 Ogla Kimaiyo Kenya 30:01
2007 Tewodros Shiferaw Birchfield 26:28 Catherine Mutwa Birchfield 30:35
2008 Ayele Mergessa Ethiopia 28:34 Roman Gessese Ethiopia 31:59
2009 Ian Hudspith Morpeth 27:44 Justina Heslop Clapham 31:46
2010 Ezekiel Cherop Kenya 27:41 Justina Heslop Clapham 31:25
2011 Edwin Kipkorir Kenya 28:25 Justina Heslop Clapham 31:44
2012 Peter Lemuya Kenya 27:35 Lauren Howart Leigh 30:26
2013 Boniface Kiprop Kenya 26:22 Perendis Lekepana 29:51
2014 Peter Emase Kenya 26:34 Joanne Chelimo Kenya 29:42
2015 Jonathan Taylor Morpeth 26:25 Alyson Dixon Sunderland Strollers 29:40
2016 Peter Newton Morpeth 27:11 Alyson Dixon Sunderland Strollers 29:48

Gadgies and Dames[edit]

Gadgie (male over 40) and Dame (female over 35).

Gadgies Dames
Year Name Club / Country Time Name Club / Country Time
1981 J Alder Morpeth Harriers 29:55 V Robson Gateshead Harriers 38:53
1982 E Hudspith Morpeth Harriers 28:30 V Robson Gateshead Harriers 35:45
1983 J Alder Morpeth Harriers 28:19 M Anderson Elswick Harriers 34:41
1984 R Highnam Tynedale 28:56 S Wilson Houghton Harriers 33:54
1985 K McNally Gateshead Harriers 28:56 P McFarland Claremont RR 33:13
1986 D Littlewood Crook & Dist 29:22 P M Farland Claremont RR 34:21
1987 H Matthews Elswick Harriers 28:45 E Lawson Elswick Harriers 36:59
1988 H Matthews Elswick Harriers 28:37 P McFarland Claremont RR 31:59
1989 A Whitfield Chester-le-Street 27:17 R Haggan Claremont RR 32:40
1990 H Matthews Elswick Harriers 28:17 M Laney Clayton-le-Moors 34:15
1991 H Matthews Elswick Harriers 34:01 P Goddard Claremont RR 38:28
1992 M McLeod Elswick Harriers 27:59 E Robinson North East Vets 34:34
1993 M McLeod Elswick Harriers 27:53 A Adams Chester-le-Street 37:55
1994 M McLeod Elswick Harriers 29:14 E Robinson Border AC 34:33
1995 L Atkinson Morpeth Harriers 28:02 S Allen Houghton & Peterlee 33:05
1996 I Haggan Sunderland Harriers 29:41 S Allen Houghton & Peterlee 33:25
1997 A Dent Blaydon H & AC 29:06 L Harding Houghton & Peterlee 32:58
1998 D Mullen Sunderland Harriers 29:13 H Robinson Chester-le-Street 33:35
1999 D Mullen Sunderland Harriers 29:11 H Robinson Chester-le-Street 33:40
2000 D Mullen Sunderland Harriers 28:46 T Thomson Pitreavie 32:14
2001 L Atkinson Morpeth Harriers 29:09 T Thomson Pitreavie 32:34
2002 R Hand Durham City Harriers 28:34 P Affleck Gala Harriers 34:25
2003 B Rushworth Sunderland Harriers 28:35 A Raw Darlington Harriers 35:32
2004 P Embleton Chester-le-Street 30:49 C Bowman Chester-le-Street 38:48
2005 D Robertson Sunderland Harriers 29:36 H Lambert North Shields Poly 38:15
2006 B Rushworth Sunderland Harriers 28:39 L Parker unattached 36:19
2007 B Rushworth Sunderland Harriers 29:18 F Lothian Fife AC 36:34
2008 B Rushworth Sunderland Harriers 30:14 H Robinson Chester-le-Street 38:26
2009 Brian Rushworth Sunderland Harriers 30:11 Yamuna Thiru Elswick 36:43
2010 Gary Moore North Shields Poly 31:42 Yamuna Thiru Elswick 36:54
2011 Ian Hudspith Morpeth Harriers 28:37 Caroline Acaster Blaydon Harriers 39:25
2012 Ian Hudspith Morpeth Harriers 27:51 Yamuna Thiru Elswick 35:32
2013 Ian Hudspith Morpeth Harriers 27:19 Sue Phillips Darlington Harriers 36:46
2014 Ian Hudspith Morpeth Harriers 27:20 Joanne Lee Tynebridge Harriers 36:07
2015 Ian Hudspith Morpeth Harriers 27:14 Stephanie Dann Maclean North Shields Poly 33:04
2016 Ian Hudspith Morpeth Harriers 27:31 Alyson Dixon Sunderland Strollers 29:48

External links[edit]