Harriers Making an Impression on National Stage

Colchester Harriers’ junior and senior athletes continue to impress nationally with some notable performances across the country at the weekend.

Rising star Lyla Belshaw was at Pembrey Country Park in Wales representing England in the SIAB Schools International against the other home countries.  On a bright, sunny day she finished in an excellent fourth position as her England team-mates filled the first six positions to comfortably see off the competition.

Lyla Belshaw finishes fourth in her first run in an England vest at Pembrey in Wales.

Meanwhile in Milton Keynes Harriers fielded senior men’s and women’s teams in the South of England Road Relay Championships.  Always seen as key competition in the calendar the event, involving teams running a mixture of 5K and 8.7K legs, attracts the strongest clubs from across the South, but the Colchester based club more than held their own.  The women had an excellent day with the team of 6 running remarkably consistently to finish in 11th place overall out of 33 teams.  The men also competed strongly in their 12 leg event, with their final position of 23rd (of 49 teams) good enough to see them qualify for the national finals in two weeks’ time.  Full results are shown below.

Primmer in action on the first leg of the 6 stage relay at Milton Keynes.

With the cross-country season in its final days three Colchester runners travelled to the outskirts of London to compete in the Orion 15, one of the longest running cross-country races the country has to offer, with the first event being held in 1923.  Running in the distinctive green of Colchester for the first time since 2018 Laura Shewbridge completed the tough 15 mile course, incorporating more than 1500 feet of climbing, in 2:09:52, to finish second woman.  Paul Dellar, in his eighth Orion 15, clocked 2:07:18 with Gary Licence, in his first, running 2:14:09.

In Parkrun action 23 Harriers ran in the 400th Parkun in the town’s Castle Park with Lizzie Wellsted first woman home in 20:58. To cap off a successful weekend Harriers had a number of first finishers at other Parkruns too, including Isla Widdowson at Alton Water (20:46), Lily Gilby at Woking (21:13), Andrew Lovelock at Marks Hall (17:54) and Jerry Walder at Mersea (18:28).

SEAA Relays – Milton Keynes – Final Results:

Women – 2:23:19 (11th position):  Victoria Primmer 18:51, Lucy Davies 33:27 (L), Lydia Callan 19:12, Heidi Hogan-Steele 33:17 (L), Tracy English (c) 18:47, Emma Burgess 19:47.

Men – 4:39:27 (23rd position):  Dean Williamson 26:41 (L), Mark Russell 17:09, Jordan Middlemist 27:59 (L), Max Caulfield 17:01, Adrian Mussett 28:05 (L), Colin Ridley 17:38, Dan Widdowson 30:30 (L), Paul Spowage 18:23, Ram Osman 28:59 (L), Kevin Higgins 17:39, Jon Nears 31:05 (L), Paul Rodgers 18:13. L = 8.7K long leg.  Other legs all 5K.