With the close of the cross-country season and the break between the indoor and outdoor track seasons, it’s been a quieter weekend than some. That’s not to say there’s not plenty of results to bring you – let’s get straight to it!
Brilliant by Butchart
New York City on a cold Sunday morning is not where the Round Up usually starts. However, with strong fields assembled across both genders, the United Airlines NYC Half Marathon provided plenty of intrigue.
The best performance from a British perspective came from Andrew Butchart, who finished an excellent sixth in a high-quality field. His time, 62:58, also improved his PB by one second. A particularly impressive performance, given a combination of factors at play. A course that is not known for fast times, cold temperatures (feel like -8) and strong winds. After a solo effort that saw him lead for the first 10km, Chris Thompson finished sixteenth (64:32).
With a late withdrawal of Eilish McColgan, Jess Warner-Judd was the leading British athlete in the women’s field. She set off with intent, running close to leaders Hellen Obiri and Senbere Teferi and passing through 5k in 16:16. It was a tough run from the five mile point, passing through 10k in 33:26 and 15k in 51:00. After battling through the last miles, Jess finished in 73:28 in twelfth. Hellen Obiri moved away to win in 67:21, a Course Record.
Cross Country Comes to a Close
Innes Fitzgerald brought her excellent XC season to a close with another victory, this time at the ESAA Cross Country Championships at Wollaton Park. Representing Devon in the Senior Girls race, she finished almost one minute (15:21) ahead of Rebecca Flaherty (16:13) and Lauren Russell (16:22). It was closer in the Senior Boys race, with North Yorkshire’s George Couttie (19:12) getting the better of Lukes Birdseye (19:17) and Ed Bird (19:18).
Zoe Gilbody and Sam Plummer took the Intermediate Girls and Boys titles respectively. The youngest races, in the Junior Category, went to Joseph Scanes and Molly Carvell.
Shorter Races Next
The ever-fast Battersea Park played host to another edition of the Friday Under Lights 5k on Friday. In her first race since the Valencia 10k, Lucy Reid took an impressive 40 seconds off her PB (15:52) to take the win, followed by Amy Griffiths (16:13) and Emma Houchell (16:24). Archie Davis (14:21), was quickest overall and followed by Andrew Penney (14:24) and Oliver Barbaresi (14:33). A total of 32 athletes ran inside 15 minutes, with Davis improving his lifetime best by 19 seconds.
On the same day and a few miles each, a new racing experience was taking place in Canary Wharf. Podium Underground saw athletes take to a go-kart course for a new definition of indoor racing. The novel concept attracted plenty of fast athletes. Steeplcahser Zak Seddon and Megan Davies took overall wins and £1,000 in prize money.
UNDERGROUND CHAMPIONS @megandaviess_ & @zakeroo pic.twitter.com/E5K21nUs42
— podium 5k road race (@podium5k) March 17, 2023
A flurry of other 5k races took place over the weekend. John Paul Williamson and Helen Perry both had good outings at the Clogher Valley 5k, winning in 15:14 and 18:29 respectively. Salford Harrier Chris Livesey (15:15) and Paiwan Dodd (19:05) took wins at the Wigan 5k. The respective podiums were completed by Wesley Wilkinson (15:20), Connor Fletcher (15:30), Serena Walker (19:25) and Tanith Ellis (20:29).
Samantha Lake (19:05) and Mark Budge (16:30) were quickest at the Tavy 5k. Meanwhile, the Wokingham 5k provided wins for Nicki Farrell (21:15) and Jack Thompson (18:16), the latter over 80 seconds clear of the rest of the field.
Handy at Hendy
Always time to try and get a pun in the titles. There were some excellent runs at the Hendy Eastleigh 10k on Sunday. Louise Small (33:34) recorded the third fastest 10k of her career, followed across the line by Meg Gadsby (33:52) and Helen Hall (34:21). Jonathan Cornish (30:10) came out top amongst the men racing, with William Bryan (30:23) second and last year’s winner Alex Lawrence (30:33) third.
Rounding out some of the other races over the same distance. North of the border, there were wins in Scotland for Colin Reilly (33:14) and Fiona Matheson (39:03) at the Jack Crawford 10k. The Sherwood Pines 10k provided wins for Rich Bond (37:48) and Lorraine Beesley (47:01), with Jackie Stretton (41:59) and Jim Gordon (39:07) taking the Hadleigh 2012 Legacy 10k. Werner Kranenburg (37:29) and Lea Wilmott (48:08) went quickest at the Richmond Riverside Spring 10k, Faye Bartlett (42:16) and Simon Bennison (38:48) the same at the Wokingham 10k.
Half Marathons Continue
This weekend incorporated a smaller number of races over 13.1 miles than recent weeks as athletes finalise plans for their spring marathons. However, opportunities remained for those wanting to race a half. These included Emily Japp (81:05) and Blain Rooney (72:03) at the Wigan Half Marathon, and Nat Lawrence (81:51) and Christian Green (70:36) at the Weymouth Half Marathon.
There are commanding wins, then there is Kieran Clements at the Stowmarket Half Marathon. His 65:21 clocking saw him finish over five minutes ahead of Scott Williams (72:02) and Hasssan Ahdich (72:15). Emily Moyes (77:44) was the fastest female, finishing clear of Maddie Jordan-Lee (78:39) and Ruth Walker (88:31).
It was the turn of Stephen Nurrish (77:36) and Katrina Jones (90:12) to join the winners list at the Mallory Park Half Marathon, organised by Active Training World. The associated 10k and 5k were won by Emma Styles (35:36), Luke Pollard (32:50), Naomi Harris (18:09) and Jack O’Farrell (15:03). Not quite Robin Hood, but the same first letter. Richie Talbot (80:22) was joined by Margaret Beever (86:22) in winning the Sherwood Pines Half Marathon in Nottingham.
Ending this section with two races in Wales. Matt Edwards (73:14) and Angharad Mair (85:28) were victorious in the Cardiff Taff Trail Half Marathon, the website for which makes it clear is a road race. Evidently a more challenging course was the Nant yr Arian Silver Trail Half Marathon. This provided wins for Lynwen Huxtable (2:03:48) and Owain Schiavone (1:38:36).
RunThrough Round Up
RunThrough’s series of events continued, with racing opportunities in London and Manchester. Starting in East London and Victoria Park. Otto Copping (33:48) and Kerstin Sung (39:19) crossed the line first in the 10k race, with Anna Domville (18:31) and Alexander Janiaud (17:00) taking the 5k. Results from the half marathon have been omitted as, at the time of writing, they include a World Record.
Moving north, athletes had the same choice of distances at Run Heaton Park. Connor Rogers (16:15) and Laura Bell (21:09) were quickest over 5k, with Sandra Stepniak (43:52) and Toby Crisford (37:23) the same over 10k. Matthew Cronshaw (77:48) and Sophie Pyke (85:09) crossed the line first in the half marathon.
Lesser Run Distances
As always, it is fun to bring some of the lesser-run distances. Starting with a quartet of 20 mile competitions. It was at the 20 and Half Fission in Gloucestershire that the fastest results were recorded. Perhaps unsurprising, as the race offers a 20 mile or half marathon option on a flat and fast course. The honours of fastest 20 miler of the weekend goes to Marcus England (1:49:36), joined by Jacqueline Rockliffe (2:11:34).
Gaby Carnwath’s 2:04:43 at the Kingston Spring Race Day 20 Mile was the fastest female time of the weekend. She was joined on the winners spot by Steve Winder (1:56:35). Racing over eight miles at the same event and going fastest were Martin Bell (47:01) and Eoin O’Connell (56:42).
Elsewhere, there were wins for Oliver Harradence (1:51:13) and Lauren Cooper (2:09:03) at the Velorunner Knighton 20, and Sophie Carter (2:21:01) and Steve Tuttle (1:55:03) at the Twin Lakes 20.
Finally, it was the turn of Matthew Lock (1:24:04) and Leonie Glasson (1:44:36) to cross the line first at the Geoff Smith’s Banbury 15. Lesley Bell (59:13) and Daryl Reid (51:24) did the same at the DAAA 10 Mile Road Race.
The inaugural Centurion Running Hundred Hills 50k (which reportedly had less than 100 hills in total thankfully) saw a bumper field of 312 finishers with Daniel Weller winning the men’s race in 4:05:26 and Amy-Jo Clarke winning the women’s in 4:46:52. Weller led from the gun, whereas Clarke had an excellent battle with Celia Waring, who eventually finished second in 4:55:20.
Next up in the Centurion calendar is the South Downs Way 50 on the 8th April.