HOLLY Wright continued her preparation for next month’s London Marathon by travelling to the famous F1 racing circuit at Silverstone for a half marathon.
The course was fast and flat, making it a great venue for those new to half marathon running and also ideal for making the step up to a marathon.
Despite a nervous start, Wright (Stafford Harriers) ran the course. in windy conditions, in a time of 2:13.53 and was delighted. Fellow Harrier, Richard Caley ran his first sub 1.30 time, clocking 1:29.34.
Fellow Harrier, Bobbie Phillips took in one of the most popular city races, the Bath half marathon and knocked a massive 35 minutes off her previous best, clocking 2:26.454. Her daughter Trudy also finished in a personal best of 2:18.50.
A group of Harriers tackled the romantically named Cloud 9 race in Congleton, a challenging off-road race from Congleton to Bosley and back.
The race took in an ascent of 1,250 feet through scenic Cheshire countryside with the reward of soup and a roll at the
finish. All participants are checked to ensure they carry adequate full body cover in the event of weather deterioration.
However, this time conditions were ideal, although cold, and first male home for the Harriers was Alan Griffin in a time of 1:14.18 (116th overall). Michelle Rushton-Fox led home the Harriers’ ladies in 1:18.15 (175th).
Other Harriers times were, Dave Payling (140th) 1:15.25, Adam, Morris (144th) 1:15.42, Mark White (213rd) 1:21.05, Joe Atherton (226th) 1:22.20, Eddie Smith (228th) 1:22.49.
Chris Skellern (236th) 1:23.30, Liz Stanyer (323rd) 1:31.18, Steve Turner (329th) 1:32.52, Michael Jones (406th) 1:45.48 and Michael Moore (419th) 2:03.24. The overall race winner was Simon Bailey (Mercia Fell Runners) in 54.54.
The weekend had started with Harriers’ annual presentation evening at the White Eagle Club, Stafford.
Male runner of the year was youngster Nathan Sabin, while female runner was Chris Skellern, who was also veteran runner of the year.
Other notable winners were, Joanne Oliver (most improved),
Sandra Smith (best female newcomer), Ian Hodkinson (best male newcomer), Dave Preece (club person of the year), Pete Burns and Mick Jones (special recognition awards), The Harriers Bee team of Wright, Steph Clayton, Shelley Burns (champagne moment, dressed as bees in Katharine House Hospice 10k).
Winners of the Harriers Challenge for 2012 were: Group 1, Nathan Sabin, Mark Bridgewood, Ian Talbot; Group 2, Darren Mattocks, Neil Martin, Steve Cooper.
Group 3, Ian Hodkinson, Dave Payling, Richard Caley; Group 4, Ralph Wedlock, Craig Baxter, Mark Oliver.
Group 5, Graham Williams, John Greatholder, Sandra Smith; Group 6, Bill Whitworth, Amy Wilshaw, George Singh.
Group 7, Shelley Burns, Jo Oliver, Kellie Lee; Group 8, Holly Wright, Val Stuart, Gael Earp.