“And there goes Mansell” was heard ringing out at the start of the 2022 Wombwell 5. Starting and finishing in the hallowed track of the Wombwell Karting circuit, (Next to Wombwell Athletics stadium, but there isn’t a track, just a football pitch and a small stand. And it used to be a greyhound and speedway stadium) this 5 mile race took place under an angry slate grey South Yorkshire sky. It wasn’t a day for slick dry shoes but a day for the wets with a few brave runners choosing the intermediates (normal shoes with waterproof socks).
Starting on the start line of the race track (where else would you start) and proceeding down the main straight then turning out of the circuit we were out onto the road circuit. We were soon at pace, with spray being kicked high into the air (knee height). Then, after about a mile, the first and only real challenge, a hill. Torrents of water faced the runners up this steep incline (Narrator “It wasn’t). At the top out onto the mountain, not unlike the Isle of Man TT. Turning back towards home and through the street circuit, known as the Monaco of the north (Darfield) we saw the 4 mile sign. But, we are back at the circuit. Is the course short. No, now the real decision. The rain had relented. We had multiple (2) laps of the circuit to complete. Do we risk changing to dry shoes now, or wait, hoping for a safety car and the dramatic Netflix finale (“No, Michael, No. This is not right”). It never came. There was no drama. The result stands. The race director kept his role.
The reward. A really nice medal, couple of bars of chocolate and a bottle of water. There was no spraying of champagne but a chap did drop a bottle of coke which his wife picked up and opened straight away leading to an unfortunate “I’m going to lamp you” incident.
Anyway, do it next year. It’s a great little event and the only race where you can make motor car noises for 2 miles.
There were 315 finishers with Scott Hinchcliffe of Barnsley Athletic Club Leading the men home in time of 26:00. First lady home was Naomi Drakeford, again of Barnsley AC in 31:36.
4 Striders took part but I can only find 3 in the results. Apologies to the missing Strider.
Full results can be found here https://my.raceresult.com/192824/