TERRY LONERGAN began his running career over in 1963, gaining selection for the Manchester Schools team after his first ever race, the city championships, where he placed 7th. Invited shortly afterwards by Alan Robertshaw to join SALE HARRIERS, he enjoyed much success during his teenage years as the team won East Lancs.,Northern and National cross country titles and shares in a 4 x 1 mile relay British record which still stands. Further success came with a 3rd .place in the AAA junior 2000 metres steeplechase, 9th in the Northern cross country champs. and 4th behind 3 senior GB senior internationals in the Rivington Pike Fell race.
A series of collapsed lungs (spontaneous pneumothorax) dashed hopes of
international steeplechase selection but undeterred within 6 weeks of surgery in 1969 he was out running again! Leaving teaching after 6 years Terry established THE COMPLETE RUNNER SHOP based in Ilkley and began the FASTRAX brand in the early 1980s; now visible on thousands of club vests throughout the U.K. and Ireland. Terry returned to regular competition with BINGLEY HARRIERS on the country, on the road and even on the fells,the highlights being a “first class” time of 3: 13:07 in the 3 Peaks (1977) and a silver in the Northern 12 man relay team of 1978 which saw Bingley break through as a force to rival the then dominant Gateshead and A.S.V.A.C.
The early 1980s would see hundreds of new clubs being set up and Terry changed his allegiance to one such club in Leeds, VALLEY STRIDERS. The “buzz” in the new club was, like so many others at the time, about the marathon. He had run 2 marathons in the ‘70s with moderate success but, with a greater respect for the event, went on to run a further 23 including 2 first places at Morecambe and Selby in 1984(of 5 run that year!)..
However, most people (old enough!) recall the run with GRETE WEITZ in LONDON in 1983 when she broke the world record and Terry ran a P.B. of 2:25:35. A time good enough for only 200th place!! Half marathon wins followed at Garforth, Saddleworth and the Brass Monkey in York (67.55).
As a veteran, he was lured back to BINGLEY HARRIERS winning several BVAF team golds. The standard necessary to stay in the team meant that 1999, when he turned 50, was an especially good year particularly the 34.58 in the Salford 10k and 76.16 half in Spain.
Despite surgery to remove a tumour in his left foot (Morton’s Neuroma) and a shoulder dislocation, Terry returned to running everyday whenver possible and racing 20 times or so each year. Having run 114 10ks under 40 minutes, 100 10 milers under 69, he competed in his 100th half marathon at Freckleton in June 2009. 95 of them inside 90 minutes. As a M65 he will be trying to reach the target of completing 200 10K races under 50 minutes . However, time will tell if this can be achieved having had a heart pacemaker fitted in March 2017.