Distance Running, 3-8 September 2019

08 September 2019

Cheltenham Harriers athletes enjoyed success at the Chippenham Half Marathon as Alex Lee and Marcus England claimed top five finishes and Doug Wight set a new PB. Representing Gloucestershire in the South West Inter-Counties match, Lee was isolated in fourth place for much of the race as he finished behind Exmouth’s Tom Merson (66:09), Calne’s Simon Nott (68:04) and Tonbridge’s Ben Cole (69:16). Lee’s time of 70:58 was his second best time over the classic 13.1 mile distance and just nineteen seconds outside his PB from last year’s Cheltenham Half Marathon. England finished one place and nineteen seconds behind Lee as he too was within a minute of his PB time with a 71:17 clocking. Having trimmed his PB by two seconds to 75:44 at last month’s Severn Bridge Half Marathon, Doug Wight was in superb form as he took twelfth place by taking almost two minutes from this time to cross the line in 71:18. Also representing the county, LV50 runner Fee Maycock finished as fourteenth lady with a time of 87:29.

Midweek action on the roads saw a Cheltenham team contest the Rose Inn Relays in the Welsh village of Redwick. After the opening 1.91mile leg Chris Cleary put the Harriers into second place, a position they maintained throughout the rest of the race as Charlie Jones (9:36) and Eliot Taylor (9:38) brought the team home behind hosts San Domenico and clear of third placed Lliswerry.

Elsewhere veterans Nick Holliday (41:21), Caroline Cotterell (44:47) and Kathryn Morton (45:45) all contested the Stratford 10k.

A new September track open meeting hosted by Gloucester AC was a welcome addition to the local fixture list and despite the windy conditions that made running fast times difficult, it proved to be a successful event. The 800m A race saw Jamie Harper finish two seconds clear of the field with a strong performance that saw him stop the clock at 1:57.72, agonisingly just two hundredths of s second outside his PB. In the 5000m A race Tonbridge’s Ben Cole proved to be the class of the field as he took the win in 15:16.44 before Oli Mott kicked clear of Cardiff’s Muktaar Farhan with 200m remaining to take second in 15:48.10. Richard Dare (15:57.36) and Dave Aubrey (16:00.29) quickly followed in fourth and fifth respectively, James Bingham (16:24.42) followed in eighth before Joe Willgoss (17:38.86) and Andrew Kaighin (18:18.99) completed the sixteen strong field. 

In the B race that followed Dan Schofield stuck closely to the host club’s pacemaker Harry Wells who did an excellent job in taking him to 4800m. Sprinting for the line Schofield stopped the clock at 17:08.46 for a twelve second PB and seven second victory. Gareth Edwards ran well for a season’s best of 17:47.56 for third place before Matt Lambourne (18:06.25) took seventh. Steve Bradley (19:29) claimed thirteenth position whilst Rachel See (19:35.19) finished as second lady and V60 athlete Michael Ede (20:26.14) recorded a season’s best time. The following evening Chris Booth concluded his track season at the Watford Open where he was less than three seconds outside his 3000m PB as he finished sixteenth in the A race in 9:02.03

The weekend’s parkruns saw Dom James in fine form as he took first place in Cheltenham. James’ time of 15:48 also moved him up into joint third position on th event’s all-time ranking list alongside clubmate Phil Beastall, but still behind Graham Rush (14:59) and Dave Roper (15:42) in a list that shows Alex Lee (15:54), James Brewer (15:55) and Ben Price (16:00) in an Harriers top seven. Matthew Dwerryhouse (18:18) took third on the day with Simon Critchley (18:30) placing fifth and Dave Rantell (19:01) taking ninth position. Beth Hawling (17:33) was first lady and eighth overall at the Mile End parkrun in London whilst Naomi Eaton (19:51) finished third overall and the first lady home at Stonehouse. There were also first places for Dave Aubrey (17:12) in Ross-on-Wye where Chris Cleary (18:09) placed third, Luke Pennington (17:46) in Cirencester and for Gareth Edwards (19:48) at the new Stratford Park event in Stroud. Caroline Cotterell (22:02) meanwhile was the second lady in Tetbury.