Graham Rush enjoyed a successful weekend with two wins and a personal best. On Saturday the Dave Newport coached runner won a British League 5000m race on the track in Southampton with a new PB of 14:33 before going on to win the Fairford 10k road race the following day. In the 5000m Rush hit the front and ran away from the field with 3km remaining whilst at Fairford he moved away from teammates Phil Beastall and John Parker after the trio went through the first 5km in 16:20. Whilst Rush went on to complete the challenging course in 32:10 Beastall moved clear of Parker to take second in 32:25 with the veteran just five seconds adrift to complete the three man winning team. Anthony Bailey made it four Harriers in the top four as he finished as second veteran home and Gavin McCaugherty impressed with a 36:34 clocking for eighth place. Ian Giles (38:37) and Richard Birch (38:49) were the next Cheltenham runners to cross the linebefore Vet 70 athlete Martin Ford was the first over 60 runner to finish in 41:07. Paul Barnes and Sue Townsend completed the course in 42:08 and 45:14 respectively.
Harry Bishop celebrated his move to Cheltenham Harriers with a win in the Cleeve Cloud Cuckoo race as the club hosted the challenging 5.5 mile multI-terrain event on Cleeve Hill. The nineteen year old enjoyed a 33 second victory over rival Will Ferguson (CLC), who in turn was over a minute clear of Harrier Anthony Bailey who was the first veteran home in third place. There was also a third place for the host club in the ladies race as Jo Wilkie placed 27th overall. James Bingham finished in fourth position before Jack Mundinano came home as second junior runner in eighth place and Gareth Edwards followed in twelfth. Dave Rantell pulled clear of fellow veteran Miguel Mundinano in the closing stages as the pair finished 18th and 20th respectively whilst Richard Birch and Anthony Rossi finished in 24th and 25th places. Paul Barnes (54th), Joan Shaw (95th), Jess Collins (150th) and Ruth Bird (179th) completed the Harriers contingent. At the Brecon 5 mile road race Jon Barnes finished second as he recorded a time of 27:27 for the hilly course whilst Jane Thomas was the second lady home in the Littleborough 5k near Rochdale in 20:39. At the Cheltenham parkrun Marcus England lowered his 5k PB to 17:34 and Paul Wade finished sixth in 1816 whilst there were third placed finisbhes for both Steve Hall (17:54) and Agata Giles (21:19) at the inaugural Kingsway parkrun in Gloucester.
Three Harriers made the midweek trip to the Watford Open Graded Meeting with Dan Owen running well in the 3000m with 8:30.42 for eighth place. In the 1500m races Alex Bampton lowered his PB to 4:08.91 as he won the E race whilst Mia O’Connell clocked 4:34.79 for twelfth place in the G race. Owen also finished third in the 3000m steeplechase in the British League match at Lee Valley where he recorded a time of 9:18.79. In the Midland League fixture in Wolverhampton there was a second place for James Miller with 4:06.3 in the 1500m where Jacob Pickering ran 4:24.7 after a close battle with Mike Gray who recorded 4:25.9. The 3000m saw Alex Bampton set a PB of 8:57.8 for third place whilst Iain Devlin lowered his PB to 9:51.8 and Andy Gore set a Harriers V45 club record of 9:59.7. The 3000m steeplechase brought a good points haul thanks to Roger Mullins (10:43.8) and Matt Evans (12:16.2) finishing second in their respective A and B string events whilst John Merrett placed fourth in the 800m A race in 2:02.6. In the women’s 3000m Jo Wilkie finished fourth A runner in 11:11.5 and Rachel See lowered her personal best to 11:27.5. Pickering went on to set an 800m PB of 2:05.0 at the Gloucestershire Schools Championships the following day where Rachel Longstaff won the senior girls 1500m in 4:53.9