Distance Running News, 26 August

Dan Owen became the holder of four Midland Counties titles after he took gold in the 10,000 metres at Tipton Stadium on Saturday – a race that also saw his Harriers team mate Alex Bampton take bronze. Running his first ever track 10K, Owen sat back for the first few laps in 5th place behind the lead group of four which included Bampton and Tipton Harriers’ Stuart Hawkes, allowing a gap of 40m to open up. As the pace slowed, Owen caught up to the lead group after passing through the 3km mark. Whilst Owen and Bampton were happy to sit back within the group, Hawkes pressed ahead as he looked to test the field and finish in a fast time. Having gone through the half way point in 15:56, the lead group had now dwindled to just the three athletes, with the medals all but guaranteed, but a fight for the gold still remained. With 9 laps to Owen took the lead and deliberately slowed the pace knowing that a fast last lap would play out to his advantage. Hawkes, weary of his strong finish, took the lead once again with 5 laps to go as he started to increase the pace, which turned out to be too much for Bampton to cope with. With Owen and Hawkes level with 1 lap to go, Owen made his move at the bell with a characteristic kick to run his final 400m in 62 seconds to cross the line in 31:41.4, with Hawkes 6 seconds behind, and Bampton a further 18 seconds adrift. Earlier at the same meeting, Richard de-Camps finished 3rd in the BMC 1500M A race in a season’s best time of 3:59.1. Deciding not to set off with the ambitious pace of the early leaders, de-Camps passed through the 800m point in 2:09, 5 seconds adrift of the front runners. As de-Camps worked throughout the race to close the gap, a strong last lap saw him narrowly miss out on overtaking the 2nd placed runner, but was duly rewarded with his first sub 4 time of the season, improving his seasons best by over 3 seconds. Weekend Parkruns saw Alex Lee (17:03) win the Cheltenham event held in Pittville Park. Phil Beastall (16:08) was first home at the Tewkesbury Parkrun, with further wins coming from Ben Price (16:47) at the Trelissick Parkrun and James Wilkinson (18:27) at the event in Gloucester. There were further good runs by Andy Gardiner (17:31) and Henry James (19:46), who finished 2nd and 17th respectively at the Huntingdon and Hastings Parkruns.