A Carnival Of Yellow
The racing came to Harborough this past week, with the club turning out in fine numbers to enjoy the home advantage that Race Harborough's Carnival of Running offers. The well-established event is one of the most popular among clubs’ runners, not just due to the location but overall organization and atmosphere with the various distances taking in the carnival procession route.
The lined streets offered great encouragement to the runners, especially for those in yellow and black with some great results across the three distances.
New for this year was the 5km distance saw Joseph O'Connell finish in 6th overall (1st M Jnr), Ian Southwell (7th / 2nd M 40) and Amanda King supporting as tail walker.
Stepping up to the 10km and with over 30 members taking part the most popular option among the Harborough AC runners. Leading the way Matt Driver, producing a personal best display to take the victory by three and a half minutes from his closest challenger, next home was Tom Kershaw in 5th (2nd SM) two minutes quicker than his 2017 time, followed by Kev Burgess (7th) who also took over a minute from his time set last year.
David Sidloff (17th) was next club runner across the line, as Steve King (23rd / 3rd M 50) set a new personal best taking over four minutes from last years’ time. Jamie Thompson 28th was proceeded by Rick Brown (38th / 1st M 60) setting a new club record in the process. The excellent results continued to come with Dan Perrin (49th), Gemma Streather (55th), Jules Chapman (57th) taking victory in her age category, Dean Rusby (70th), Chris Loake (74th), Lizzie Holtham (99th). Slipping just outside the top hundred Catherine Poynton (105th) took nearly half a minute from her time set earlier in the year at the Leicester 10Km, Michele Brocklebank continued the gold rush also taking victory in her perspective age category (146th), Louise McAllister (155th), Sarah Goode (156th), Stuart Nimmo (163rd), Val Goode only second to Michele in their age category in 73rd, Carmel Perrin (198th), Penny Wooding (199th), Leanne Shrive (213th) with Beth Smith (224th) just slipping outside the hour mark. Natalie Ives just edged her sister Michelle out finishing 235th & 240th respectively before Pam Hilliam (260th) took first place in her age bracket. Yvonne Barber crossed the finish line next (300th) with Molly Smith completing her first 10km race as she continues building up to her half marathon challenge later this year. Just behind Molly was Louise Dicicco (309th) with Patsy Wilson finishing 316th of the packed 346 field.
The Half Marathon course follows much of the same route with an added 7-mile rural loop added at Great Bowden before return runner to the foot of the daunting Burnmill road hill. Andy Holt was first home in a personal best time, agonizingly close to breaking the 90-minute barrier but just missing it by 4 seconds, Rich Hudson followed in 25th winning his age category, with Ade Stewart (30th) closely chased by Tom Ward (32nd).
Nick Osbourne took third in his age bracket with (34th) just two seconds in front of Jacquie Hanmer on chip time which was good enough to see her finish top of her category. Next came Peter Attenborough (42nd) with Bob Allsopp clocking a new Barefoot HM personal best whilst finishing 46th. Jamie Holtham was next in at the Symington rec finish (71st), before Hazel O'Connell (98th) for second in her age category, followed Christine Voelkerling (121st).
An interest battle then ensued with Lucy Jenkinson, Michael Brown and Simon Poynton all arriving at the foot of Burnmill road hill together, when the trio were asked who would come out on top it was Lucy who stated her intentions, and it come to pass as she edged ahead of her club mates by the narrowest of margins beating Michael after a photo finish.
Tracy Southwell completed next hitting the maximum finishing 180th, succeeded by Carrie Holt (188th) & Jonathan Leech (263rd).
The Race Harborough event wasn't the only local race this week, with the east midland grand prix series coming to East Carlton country park. The Corby 5, infamously known for its challenging climax saw nine members among the 365 participants. Jamie McAllister continued his impressive vein of form finishing first the club in 84th, with Ben Smith finishing as the centenary man in 100th place a head of a three-way battle which saw Ian Southwell finish 220th in 40:00 exactly three seconds ahead of Gary Wallis and nineteen in front of Dean Rushby. Tracy Southwell had a great run to finish 256th before her weekend half marathon, followed by Andy Shrive (306th), Louise McAllister (315th) and Leanne Shrive in 331st.
Photo credit: Louise Dicicco and Adam Brooks.