A sunny Sutton Park hosted the English Road Running Association’s Men’s 12 Stage and Women’s 6 Stage Road Relay Championships, as Harborough AC fielded teams in both races having earned their place through last month's midlands qualifying event. The Ladies 6 Stage team finished 42nd overall with a total time of 02:58:00. Christine Voelkerling kick started the team on leg A taking 20 seconds off her midlands time, passing over to Mel Brocklebank, Sarah Ward, Karen Brooks who improved by 50 seconds from her last outing before Marise Taylor brought the team home.
In the Men’s 12 Stage, despite the team facing multiple line-up changes the strength in-depth was clear to see, as the team finished with an accumulative time of 05:23:50 for 62nd position. Leg A saw Matt Driver using the mass start advantage to take 30 seconds off his Midlands time, before Nick Pollard shone on his road relay debut posting 0:17:49 over his 5k leg. Gareth Wood before London Marathon next week took over on Leg C, with Keith Matthews, Rich Hudson, Nick Osbourne, Kevin Burgess, Garry Hodgkins, Jamie McAllister, Jamie Thompson, Tom Ward, Peter Attenborough all putting in strong efforts for the team.
A busy 'Sports Sunday' followed beginning with the annual club relay, this year competing for the Neville Brooks trophy and saw 36 members in action over the six-legged event, covering the 20-mile Harborough town boundary before finishing in Lubenham. On the day, Rick Brown, Christine Voelkerling, Matt Driver, Hannah Eveleigh, Nick Turner-Henke and Molly Smith all posted the fastest split on their respective legs, but it was the team F consisting of Pam Hilliam, Sarah Goode, Matt Driver, Gary Wallis, Graeme Rolfe and Louise McAllister who claimed the overall victory.
A special mention to Pete Leach with his team for organizing the event, the marshals / volunteers helping around the course, Andy Meads for meticulously organizing the teams, Tracy Southwell for arranging the meal afterwards & the Brooks’ for presenting the trophy; capping a fitting tribute to Nev.
Also, on Sunday Andy Meads was in action on the south coast at this year’s Brighton 10Km, held as part of the Brighton marathon weekend. Running in aid of the Rethink Mental Health charity, Andy posted a personal best time of 0:34:37 edging ever closer to his sub 34 target. His time on the day saw him finish 39th of the 4554 field.
Elsewhere Garry Hodgkins attended Derbyshire’s largest mass participation event, the Derby 10K with nearly 4000 runners taking part in the race which starts and finishes at Pride park. Despite his efforts a day prior at the National relays, Garry produced an excellent display to stop the clock at 0:41:05 to take 173rd.