ABERYSTWYTH ATHLETIC CLUB’S Gary Wyn Davies finished fourth overall in Sunday’s (Mar 12) Llanelli Half Marathon.
Davies finished just outside the top three, all of whom were athletes from the Swansea Harriers, in a time of 1:14:22.
Josh Griffiths won the event with a new course record of 1:05:18 and was closely followed by team mates Matthew Rees and Ian Harris.
Runners from Ceredigion Actif also took part in the race with Julian Jones finishing fastest in a time of 1:37:57.
There were also a number of other runners from across Wales taking part in the event and a number of them achieved personal best times.
The event has been hailed an overwhelming success and set the tone for the future of the race that was taken over by Front Runner Events earlier this year.
Hundreds of spectators came out to support runners at the start line and across the entirety of the course, despite the wet weather.
The flat and fast 13.1-mile course attracted runners of all levels including first-timers, charity runners, club runners and elite athletes. The race saw the course record smashed and hundreds of PBs achieved on a day that held perfect running conditions, with little to no wind.
The half marathon set off from Parc Y Scarlets then proceeded on the fully closed roads onto the Llanelli Wetlands Centre and along the magnificent stretch of the Millennium Coastal Path towards Festival Fields and back.
The race offered runners a rare chance to be part of a closed road race, where the route is as flat as you’ll find anywhere in the beautiful region of west Wales. Athletes were cheered over the finish line at the stadium by a very supportive crowd that contributed tremendously to the atmosphere of the event.
Runners were able to benefit from a team of race pacers at the event helping many runners achieve their PB and hitting their target time on the day. The fully marshalled race on closed roads, waters stops (thanks to hydration partners Brecon Carreg), energy gels, bespoke medal, finishers t-shirt and goody bag delighted the race participants.
Results (provisional) – Llanelli Half Marathon 2017
Josh Griffiths (Swansea Harriers), 01:05:18
Matthew Rees (Swansea Harriers), 01:11:45
Ian Harris (Swansea Harriers), 01:11:55
Carys-Mai Hughes (Cardiff Athletics Club), 01:21:21
Ellie Astins, 01:27:21
Luticia Thomas (Amman Valley Harriers), 01:27:43
Wales v Scotland postponed
WALES’ Six Nations match at home to Scotland on Saturday has been postponed due to the coronavirus outbreak.
The two other Six Nation fixtures had already been postponed and no date has been confirmed to complete the 2020 Championship.
The Welsh Rugby Union had insisted earlier on Friday the game would “go ahead as planned”.
A WRU statement read: “The Welsh Rugby Union has maintained an open dialogue with, and continued to seek advice and direction from, the National Assembly for Wales and other stakeholders, including the Six Nations, on this fast-moving issue.
“Whilst medical advice remains consistent, we have decided that it is in the best interests of supporters, players and staff to fall in line with recent measures taken across the UK and global sports industries.
“The WRU would like to thank all parties for their counsel on the subject and will make further announcements with respect to rescheduling the fixture in the coming days.
“Every effort has been made to stage this game and we appreciate that individuals will have been inconvenienced. Given the fluid and unprecedented nature of this issue a postponement became the only viable option.”
Domestic football at all levels in Wales suspended
THE FOOTBALL Association of Wales has today (13 March) taken the decision to suspend domestic football at all levels in Wales with immediate effect until April 4 due to the COVID-19 outbreak.
The intention at this time will be to resume the football schedule depending on the medical advice and conditions from the relevant authorities at that time.
The FAW is fully aware of the impact this will have on the domestic game but the health and safety of all fans, players, volunteers and stakeholders are of paramount importance.
The FAW will continue to monitor this situation on a day-by-day basis and will continue to provide updates when appropriate.
Exercise Referral Scheme doing more for health intervention than ever before
A record 35,069 participants attended Exercise Referral classes during 2640 hours of health classes in 2019.
The National Exercise Referral Scheme (NERS) is an evidence-based health intervention scheme which incorporates physical activity and behavioural change techniques to support referred clients to make lifestyle changes to improve their health and well-being.
NERS Ceredigion has seen a dramatic increase in demand over the past year. A coordinator and four full time exercise professionals work to deliver the scheme, delivering 73 classes per week. The age of participants range from 16 years old, with the eldest participant in Ceredigion being 95.
Exercise class options include Gym, Circuit, Postural Stability (seated), Spin Bikes, Aqua Aerobics, Tai Chi and Pilates. Venues include council and community centres in Aberystwyth, Aberaeron, Lampeter, Tregaron, Cardigan and Llandysul.
Councillor Catrin Miles, Cabinet member with responsibility for Leisure, highlighted the benefits of the scheme, “There are many physical, psychological and social benefits to being part of the scheme, including confidence-building, better self-esteem, meeting new people and being generally fitter and healthier. Ceredigion Actif’s highly qualified Health Intervention Team provide opportunities to exercise that are fun, rewarding and that can be incorporated into everyday life.”
NERS Ceredigion targets people with a medical condition through various pathways including generic, cardiac rehabilitation, pulmonary, PSI falls, stroke rehabilitation, mental health, cancer and weight management. The 16 week tailored programme of exercise is delivered by a team of specialist Level 4 qualified exercise professionals who guide referred participants towards realising their individual goals.
A participant in Aberystwyth said, “This has been the best thing I have ever done. I have thrived from doing different activities and pushing myself out of my comfort zone which has not only helped my self-esteem but also my depression and everything else including my pain. I have also made new friends which I didn’t even consider would happen and we’re not only being social but we’re having fun too which is a bonus”.
There is ongoing monitoring from the instructors with follow up assessments at 16 weeks as well as on completion at 52 weeks. Long-term ‘maintenance’ options are available post 16 weeks which include the continuation of exercise classes as well as opportunities to join clubs such as walking basketball, walking football, golf sessions and walking rugby.
During 2018-2019 there were 913 referrals to the scheme. To gain access to the scheme, a person needs to be referred by a Health Professional, usually a GP, Practice Nurse or a condition specific Physiotherapist.
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