There were second placed finishes for both Beth Wynn and Dave Roper as Cheltenham Harriers men and women won the team prizes at the Bourton 10k road race. After the opening two 1km loops of the village Roper and his training partner Oli Mott (Bristol) were following the pace of John McDonnell (Luton) as the three athletes pulled clear of the field. Mott dropped off the pace shortly after 2km whilst Roper lasted until 4km. McDonnell went on to take the win in 30:45 with Roper crossing the line in 31:35 nine seconds ahead of Mott. John Parker returned to action for his first race of 2013 to finish seventh overall and as second veteran in 33:18. Not far behind a large pack containing three Harriers entered the final 2km of the race locked together. A strong finish from Ben Price saw him claim eleventh place in 33:29, two seconds and two places ahead of Anthony Bailey with both runners setting big personal bests as they broke the 34 minute barrier for the first time. Whilst missing out on a place in the victorious four man winning team veteran Darren Jordan ran well for a time of 33:37 in sixteenth place.
In the women’s race Wynn was in second place from the early stages as Jo Emery (Coventry) dominated the event. Eighteen year old Wynn’s time of 38:00 lowered her personal best by almost four minutes as she finished thirty seconds ahead of Kate Wright (Stratford) who took third place. Vickie Wilkinson and Louise McRitchie were the sixth and seventh ladies home in times of 39:28 and 39:31 respectively to ensure the Harriers women took the team honours, whilst also placing first and second in the vet 35-39 age group. Rachel See was the first under 18 lady home in a personal best of 46:22 whilst at the other end of the age spectrum 69 year old Martin Ford was the first vet 65 home in 38:55 to move to the top of the 2013 rankings for the age group.
The Cheltenham men’s squad showed its depth with a further four runners between twentieth and thirtieth to finish with nine of the top thirty thanks to Roger Mullins in 20th (34:24), an impressive 10k debut for 15 year old Dmitry Nazarenko in 22nd (34:38), Jon Barnes in 25th (34:52) and Elliot Prince in 30th (35:02). There were personal bests for Harriers debutant Josh Spering (36:41), James Wilkinson (38:15) and Steve Linton (38:40). James Bingham (39:28), Dave Hemmings (39:55), Paul Barnes (40:36) and Beccy Roberts (58:24) completed a successful race for the twenty strong Harriers contingent.