HRRL Stubbington 10k, SXCL Manor Farm Country Park and Lakeside Canal 8 mile
Farnham Runners were out in force for the two races organised by Stubbington Green Runners both within a week and both in good weather this year.
Thirty three members tackled the almost flat 10km course, the sixth event in the Hampshire Road League, and nineteen members enjoyed the mud around the Hamble estuary in the Southern League Cross Country League race.
HRRL Stubbington 10k
In the Hampshire League the men’s A and B teams are holding safe positions in the top divisions despite the fierce competition. The first six finished within 38 minutes and the first nine were under 40 minutes. The ladies A team in Division Two consolidated its promotional place of second while its B team moved up from fifth to third to tie on points with the second placed club. Ten of the club’s runners achieved new personal best times. There was a number of high category placings with two of the ladies first in their categories.
James Clarke led them in again in 54th place of 1600 finishers in a fine 36 minutes 24 seconds. Not far behind Richard Lovejoy pushed ahead for a new personal best of 36:48 (72nd), followed by James Warren in 37:12 (86th) and Ian Carley in 37:24 (96th). Racing his first 10km for a while Mike Anderson headed the B team in 37:41 for an excellent 3rd in his category. Rob Gilchrist took time out from marathon training for 37:51 followed by Stuart Williamson who gained a new PB by a minute (38:13). Mike Walberton was pleased to dip under 40 minutes again in 39:54 and be 6th in his category.
First in the C team was Neil Ambrose, who took a new PB by 3 minutes in 39.46. A close-packed trio of Stuart Haig (40:59), Colin Addison (41.10) and Martin Billett (41.14) completed the scoring. Terry Copeland (42:14), Steve Murphy (43:31) John Phillips (43:18), Steve Bailey (45:59, PB by 2 mins) Tim Farrant (47:18) and Geoff Brown 47:27 all ran strongly to support the team and Douglas Blyth recorded 10th in his category in 62:10.
For the ladies Sarah Hill came a superb 4th place in 37:06 and was third Farnham Runner back. Her presence is always a huge boost to the team. She was first in her category by 3 minutes. Next Charlotte Hanson gained a new PB by a minute in 42:49. Jane Georghiou, first in her category, was given the next team place based on her “gun to chip” time of 45:21 (chip to chip time 45:02) though Eloise Stradling who started further back ran a faster chip time of 44:36, a PB by almost 3 minutes. The excellent B team also comprised Vicki Clarke in 47:36 and Kayleigh Copeland, who snatched third place in the team based on her “gun” time, in 50:33. For back up there was Tori Shaw (49:51) and Louise Davies (49:56), both pleased to go under 50 minutes again, Kay Copeland (51:27) Becky Martin (52:08) Mary D. Fitzgerald (53:18, PB 1 min), Rebecca Ashcroft (54:07, PB 3 mins), Tina Harrison (54:13) and Kathy Brown (62:10).
SXCL Manor Farm Country Park
The tables were turned in the cross country when Richard Lovejoy took the lead for the club for the first time. After an easier training week he had the power to push on in the closing stages to overtake James Clarke (13th) and finish in his best ever position of 10th. Next Jirka Zaloudik in 25th, Matt Dellar in 40th and Colin Addison in 42nd helped the team to a fine 2nd of the 22 clubs. Stuart Haig challenged for a scoring place in 47th with Terry Copelnd 86th, Darren Carins 96th, Steve Bailey 136th, Terry Steadman 143rd and Perter Chapman 160th.
Missing a couple of stronger runners the ladies came 11th. Gabi Hitchcock overtook Jane Georghiou (36th) on the final hill for 35th with Emma Pearson making an important contribution in 46th. She was followed by Lindsay Bamford in 57th, Anne Snelson taking advantage of her new trail shoes in 67th with Kay Copeland 100th, Mary D Fitzgerald 108th and Cyra Parkes 137th.
The combined score of 13 points (2+11) gave the club 5th overall on the day and they just slipped down from joint third to fourth of the 22 clubs on aggregate. For the first time ALL stayed for the lunch provided by the hosts afterwards!
Lakeside Canal 8 mile
In this local race run near Frimley, Shirley Perrett won her age category in 1:14:49 while Lindsay Bamford clocked 1:05:45 (22nd lady), Catrin Petty 1:25:00 and Hannah Maxfield 1:26;19.