Harriers Success at Ekiden Relays

Colchester Harriers enjoyed another successful day in the sunshine at the Ipswich Ekiden, an annual team relay competition based on a popular Japanese format involving teams of six combining to cover the marathon distance.  Colchester took 9 teams up the A12 to the event, which attracted over 140 teams from across East Anglia, and continued their successful season by coming away with 3 team titles and two second places.

Leading the way Harriers’ crack female squad blew away their competition to secure the women’s open title by an incredible margin of 28 minutes – the team of Justine Sheekey, Holly Freeguard, Victoria Primmer, Eleanor Mayne, Tracy English and Lydia Callan combining to cover the 26.2 mile distance in a time of 2:48:44.   Not to be outdone the women’s V45 team also tasted success, with Annette Oakman, Denise Morley, Kate Gibson, Alexandra Hennessey, Sarah Stradling and Fran Norris bringing the baton home in 3:09:51 to hold off a strong Bury St Edmunds Pacers challenge by just over a minute.

Victoria Primmer in action at the Ekiden relays
Harriers were the first ladies team to finish in 2:48:44, winning by 28 minutes.
The V45 ladies team won their age category clocking under 3:10:00.

For the men the V50 sextet of Paul Dellar, James Waterson, Colin Ridley, James Waite, Keith Marley and Andy Raynor retained their title, crossing the line in 2:44:01, three minutes ahead of their closest rivals.

The V50 men’s team won their age category clocking under 2:45:00

The men’s senior team and V40 teams also came very close.  Ram Osman, Chris Sellens, Tom Rehal, Cameron Humphries, Tom Cresswell, Max Caulfield came home in 2:23:24, missing out on the men’s open title by less than a minute, whilst Jason Gunn, Jon Nears, Mark McKeown, Simon Ford, Dan Widdowson and Matt Davey combined to finish second in the Men’s V40 category.  Osman, who ran his 7.2K leg in 24:20 and Caulfield, who completed 5K in 16:44 had the consolation of posting the fastest individual times of the day for their respective legs.

Full Results:


Senior A – 1st in category, 18th overall (Justine Sheekey (7.2K) 28:38, Holly Freeguard (5K) 20:43, Victoria Primmer (10K) 39:39, Eleanor Mayne (5K) 21:05, Tracy English (10K) 39:56, Lydia Callan (5K) 18:41) – 2:48:44.

FV 45 – 1st in category, 43rd overall (Annette Oakman 32:25, Denise Morley 21:07, Kate Gibson 49:10, Alex Hennessey 21:31, Sarah Stradling 42:45, Fran Norris 22:53) – 3:09:51.


Senior A –  2nd in category, 2nd overall –  (Ram Osman 24:20, Chris Sellens 16:50, Tom Rehal 32:53, Cameron Humphries 17:03, Tom Cresswell 35:33, Max Caulfield 16:44) – 2:23:24.

MV40 A – 2nd  in category, 7th overall (Jason Gunn 25:38, Jon Nears 17:27, Mark McKeown 35:36, Simon Ford 18:54, Dan Widdowson 36:41, Matt Davey 19:36) – 2:33:52.

MV50 A – 1st in category, 13th overall (Paul Dellar 28:11, James Waterson 19:34, Colin Ridley 37:34, Keith Marley 18:40, Jay Waite 40:33, Andy Raynor 19:29) – 2:44:01.

Senior B – 9th in category, 23rd overall (Dean Wicks 31:13, James Plant 20:02, Harry Swinbourne 37:22, Paul Clark 21:52, Robert Smith 41:06, Bill Hayton 22:39) – 2:54:13.

MV40 B – 7th in category, 25th overall (Paul Gardner 30:37, Charlie Holohan 20:21, Austen Mitchell 39:55, Dan Macey 22:50, Simon Colclough 40:35, Chris Regan 22:02) – 2:56:21.

MV50 B – 8th in category, 46th overall (Dave Hilson 28:54, Simon Miller 23:25, Paul Neville 50:59, Simon Morgan 22:14, Doug O’Neill 45:05, Bill Haining 22:06) – 3:12:53


Mixed A – 25th in category, 71st overall (Amelia Green 30:55, Pat Marsh 24:11, Anita Mussett 51:17, Sofie Samuelson 23:08, Arthur Whiston 55:41, Paul Taylor 23:20) – 3:28:32.