Cheltenham Harriers distance runners again played their part as the club’s alongside the club’s throwers, sprinters and jumpers to help the team to claim the Midland League Division Two title with a victory in the final fixture of the season in Stoke. The previous three matches had seen the Harriers gain maximum points in the men’s 5000m and 3000m races with A and B string victories on each occasion. The task of continuing the 100% record was given to Oli Mott and Richard de-Camps who were both doubling up having competed earlier in the afternoon. The windy conditions meant that nobody wanted to push the pace and a relatively slow start followed with de-Camps, Mott and Harriers teammate John Parker all in the leading pack for the first two kilometres. The pace then picked up in the final 1000m as Paul Andrew (Leamington) took Mott and de-Camps clear with the race only decided in the final 200m as de-Camps sprinted clear for the win in 9:10.5. Mott took second for the B string win in 9:13.5 with Andrew crossing the line 1.8 seconds later and Parker taking fourth place in 9:24.4. Earlier in the afternoon de-Camps had placed third in the 800m A race in 2:01.3 before Jacob Pickering impressively won the B race in 2:00.4. Mott had made a last minute decision to run the 3000m steeplechase to help the team gather vital points. Despite struggling with the water jump his superior running ability saw Mott take a comfortable win in 10:42.9 as Matt Evans claimed third in the B string in 12:10.5. In the 1500m Pickering (4:26.3) and Luke Kearns (4:26.4) placed as fifth and third in their respective A and B string standings whilst guest runner Iain Devlin recorded 4:31.0. For the ladies team Rachel Longtaff finished as runner up in the 1500m with 4:51.7 behind Stoke’s England international Kate Holt. In the same race Hilary Mott was second B runner in 5:09.0 despite having already cruised round the 800m B race fourth in 2:47.0 as a warm up for the 3000m where she was third overall and second A runner in 11:05.4. The 3000m also saw Fee Maycock set a season’s best and club LV45 record of 11:10.4 as she finished fourth overall as second B runner. In the 800m A race Katerina Horrocks ran well for third place in a time of 2:35.7.
Elsewhere there was a win for John Parker at the Hooky 6 miles road race in Hook Norton where he clocked 32:19 in a close race that saw Paul Fernadez (Abingdon) and James Bolton (Woodstock)finish in 32:27 and 32:19 respectively. The Gloucester City Marathon saw Andy Gore finish third overall and first Gloucestershire athlete in 2:51:18 whilst Andy Gardiner acted as three hour pacemaker to clock a spot on 2:59:52 for fourteenth position. In the accompanying half marathon event Marcus England also took third place with a time of 74:32. Meanwhile Liam Roarty finished eighth in the Dublin Open Graded meeting 3000m A race in a time of 9:07.52. Weekend parkruns saw the Harriers fill the top three place at the Cheltenham event where Dan Owen (16:22), Will New (16:47) and Alex Lee (16:53) led the way home before James Wilkinson (18:34), Steve Hall (18:55), Henry James (19:32) and Gareth Edwards (19:40) crossed the line. Liam Roarty (17:28) won the River Valley event in Dublin, Dave Aubrey (17:50) finished second at the Wormwood Scrubs parkrun and Amber Watson (22:03) was the first lady home in Newent.