Tempo Winter Series Race 3.
Report – Phil Brennan.
Christmas was a distant memory at the last race of 2019, as over 300 runners took to the streets and hills around Ilmington in the third of these winter 10k races.
This challenging race, always a sellout, rewards effort in several unique ways, with every finisher receiving a pack of butcher’s sausages and a mystery prize awaits those who complete all five races in the series – possibly a hoodie but only time will tell.
Over thirty Stratford AC runners returned for the challenge, led home by Matt Burdus-Cook in 2nd place overall and 1st M35, his time of 37:38 leaving him well positioned to take the overall series prize.
Richard Liggatt, 7th, was frustratingly close to the 40 minute barrier in 40:01. In close pursuit, the next eight SAC runners were all inside the top fifty finishers: John Raby, 12, 40:55, Seth Turner, 15, 41:40, (2nd M45), Max Ross, 20, 42:49, Ade Mason, 24, 42:59, Malcolm Bowyer, 26, 43:18. Malcolm was 2nd M55, just 14 seconds off first place in his age category, Owen Goschen, 30, 43:48, David Smyth, 34, 44:36, and Joe Lee, 43, 45:51.
Mark Hateley, 53, 46:50, John Bettles, 63, 47:44, Clive Swain, 66, 48:10, Luke Watkins, 72, 48:31, James Coy, 76, 48:51, and Damian Wheeler, 77, 48:53, were all comfortably inside the fifty minute barrier. Agonisingly close was Pete Wharton in 50.06.
Emma Parkin and Clare Weatherhead battled it out to decide first female finisher for the club, finishing in 89th and 91st places respectively, with times of 50:21 and 50:24. They were 14th and 15th overall females. Liuba Pasa’s 52:11 gave her 2nd in her category.
Tony Tomecek, 53:28, Kimberley Lee, 54:07, Daniel Hodgkin, 54:25, Carl James, 55:50, Rebecca Pridham, 55:56, Simon Curran, 56:13, Phil Brennan, 56:57 (1st – MV75), Stuart McLeod and Richard Hartwell (both 59:00) all comfortably beat the hour. Neil Robertson, 1:00:08, was agonisingly close.
No SAC team would be complete without those who may not be as quick as some of those above but try as hard as any and Clare Eynon, 1:07:07, Alice Baxendale, 1:09:22, Paul Nash, 1:16:54, Gemma Smith, 1:17:38, and John Butler, 1:22:27 ( 2nd – MV75), deserve credit for completing this difficult challenge.
The race was won by Patrick Roddy in a time of 33.48 and the first female finisher, in 18th place with a time of 42.16, was Natasha White. 314 runners complete the course.