There was a double victory for Cheltenham Harriers as Harry Bishop and Rachel Longstaff enjoyed victories at the Aviator 10k in Staverton. Bishop continued his recent rivalry with CLC’s Will Ferguson as the duo soon moved clear of the field and remained locked together until around the 7km mark. Bishop then upped the pace to open a few yards gap, which he was able to extend over the short climb a kilometre later before crossing the line for a six second victory in a personal best of 32:22. Jeremy Bradley took third place in 34:35 and Andy Gore was the first veteran home as finished in fourth place in 36:25. Longstaff ensured it was a Harriers double as she finished as the first lady home in 41:05 with Debbie Smith the first LV45 runner home in 44:56.
The previous night saw a win for Anthony Bailey in the Bourton Hilly Half Marathon. From the start Woodstock’s James Bolton soon established himself at the front of the field, with Bailey approximately ten seconds behind after three miles. After seven miles the Oxfordshire athlete, with a seventy minute time to his name earlier this year, was out of sight and around a minute ahead of Bailey. However, at around nine miles Bolton came back into Bailey’s sight and the gap started to close as the Cheltenham runner was inspired as the deficit reduced. Catching his rival with around a mile and a half to go, Bailey quickly went past Bolton and established a 26 second winning margin as he crossed the line in 75:02. Dave Rantell took ninth place in 82:40 before Ian Giles came home in 86:00. Paul Barnes was the third vet 55 runner to finish in 94:43, vet 70 runner Martin Ford was the first over 60 athlete in 95:45 and Dave Hemmings completed the course in 97:04.
Earlier in the week Jacob Pickering was second in the Westonbirt 10k in 36:51 whilst Richard Birch recorded 38:48 for eleventh place and Samantha Pickering stopped the clock at 50:29. Mark James and Steve Maguire recorded 22:31 and 23:20 for tenth and eighteenth places respectively at the Rose Inn 4 mile road in Newport and Andy Gore finished second at the Lethbridge 10k in Swindon in 36:07. There was a first parkrun victory for Gareth Edwards at the Newent event where he clocked 19:12 for the challenging course whilst Alex Bampton enjoyed a 16:01 win at the Cannon Hill parkrun in Birmingham. Closer to home Alex Lee finished second at the Cheltenham parkrun in 17:24 where Luke Kearns (18:28) and Ben Sluman (19:11) finished fifth and eleventh respectively. Michael Horrocks (19:11) came home seventh in the Kingsway parkrun in Gloucester where Agata Giles was third lady in 22:41 whilst Matt Evans finished sixth in 18:44 at the Bramley parkrun in Leeds.