Harriers Triumph at Relays

Colchester Harriers athletes enjoyed a glorious day in the sun at the Essex Road Relays – held for the second successive year at the town’s Northern Gateway Sports Park – to come away with an impressive haul of team medals.

The men’s squad certainly had that podium feeling – with medal winning teams in all four categories – and golds in three of them.   The V40 team of Nate Filer (15:40), Jason Gunn (15:40) and Mark McKeown (15:47) ran remarkably similar times for their 3 mile legs to hold off the challenge of a strong Billericay Striders’ trio.  Consistency was again the key to success in the V50 age group with Paul Spowage (16:48), Jay Waite (16:37) and Allen Smalls (16:49) combining to pip Havering AC to gold on the last leg by just 21 seconds.  The third gold medal trio of Colin Ridley (16:45), Arthur Whiston (22:17) and Chris Stevenson (17:46) proved much too strong on the day for Springfield Striders and Ilford AC in the V60 category.

Filer, McKeown and Gunn – V40 Essex Champions

The men also put in a strong showing in the hard-fought Open category with the quartet of Ram Osman (14:49), Cameron Humphries (15:58), Max Caulfield (15:47) and James Morley (14:52) taking the bronze position on a thrilling last leg.

The women were also amongst the medals.  The Open A trio of debutant Rosie Wild (17:06), Victoria Primmer (18:01) and Jennifer Lovelock (17:49) pushed Havering AC all the way but had to settle for silver in the end, with the B team of Emma Burgess (18:35), Holly Freegard (a remarkable 17:49 on her debut at the event) and Justine Sheekey (18:19) missing out on bronze by just 10 seconds despite a courageous attempt to catch the Halstead athlete on the last leg by joint-captain Sheekey.

Wild, Lovelock and Primmer – Open Silver Medal Winners

The trio of Laura Shewbridge (19:24), Sarah Stradling (an encouraging 20:20 on her return to championship racing) and Ellie Cumner (19:36) combined effectively for a well-earned bronze in the V40 category, but it was the star V50 squad that stole the day with a remarkable gold and silver double medal winning performance.  The A team of Annette Oakman (19:08), Margaret Deasy (19:17) and Denise Morley (19:01) would have been a match for any other team in the country with the B team of Katie Gibson (20:05), joint captain Nicola Hilson (20:55) and Tracey Smedley (20:12) also combining brilliantly to hold off a fast-finishing Orion Harriers team for silver.

Women’s Squad at Road Relays

Away from events at Northern Gateway, earlier the same morning a group of Harriers took on the Little Bromley 10K and again enjoyed considerable success as emerging 16 year old star Lizzie Wellsted took a minute off her Personal Best (PB) over the distance to clock 36:49 and finish a clear second in the women’s race with the evergreen Adrian Mussett posting 31:54 to finish second overall and first in the M50 category.  Colin Ridley warmed up for his gold medal winning performance at the relays by running 35:39 to take victory in the M60 category, John Scaife ran 35:33, John Fryer 40:31 and Stuart Harris an excellent 40:44 (PB).

Lizzie Wellsted – 2nd at Little Bromley 10K (36:49 PB)

Last but by no means least 3 green vests completed marathons over the weekend.  At Manchester Jack McGuire went under three hours for the first time to record a big PB of 2:53:02 with Jonathan West coming home in 4:19:29, whilst in Boston (Lincs) Simon Miller finished his fifteenth marathon in 3:57:23.

Essex Road Relays full results:

Women Open – 2nd Colchester A 52:58 (R Wild 17:06, V Primmer 18:01, J Lovelock 17:49), 4th Colchester B 54:41 (E Burgess 18:35, H Freegard 17:47, J Sheekey 18:19), 13th Colchester D 1:04:50 (T MacLeod 21:01, G Ballard 22:35, M Lock 21:13), DNF Colchester C (R Cooke 18:54, K Rigby 19:15, A Green).

Women V40 – 3rd Colchester A 59:21 (L Shewbridge 19:24, S Stradling 20:20, E Cumner 19:35). 4th Colchester B 1:03:29 ((E Mayne 19:36, N Rice 23:32, H Taczynski 20:20).

Women V50 – 1st Colchester A 57:27 (A Oakman 19:08, M Deasy 19:17, D Morley 19:01), 2nd Colchester B 1:01:13 (K Gibson 20:05, N Hilson 20:55, T Smedley 20:12), 5th Colchester C 1:04:20 (A Mussett 21:43, T Wellsted 22:13, K Sandercock 20:23).

Men Open – 3rd Colchester A 1:01:28 (R. Osman 14:49, C. Humphries 15:58, M Caulfield 15:47, J Morley 14:52), 12th Colchester C 1:06:51 (A. Somers 16:28, B. Frost 17:16, R. Smith 17:25, M. Shaw 16:20), 13th Colchester B 1:07:31  (A. Jobling 17:02, Dan King 17:33, C Sellens 16:22, Dom King 17:32), 18th Colchester D 1:15:54 (M Smith 18:23, J Plant 18:12, C Aylett 19:13, P Clark 20:05), 23rd Colchester E 1:25:20 (A Mcloughin 22:45, D Wicks 21:59, G Hayes 19:53, D Steptoe-Thompson 20:41).

Men V40 – 1st Colchester A 47:09 (N Filer 15:40, J Gunn 15:40, M McKeown 15:47), 5th Colchester B 50:52 (D Widdowson 16:00, T Ballard 17:29, J Wright 17:23), 10th Colchester C 54:02 (A Mitchell 17:32, G Licence 18:04, J Dawkins 18:24), 11th Colchester D 57:09 (C Holohan 19:12, C Manby 18:22, I Rattray 19:34), 16th Colchester E 1:05:33 (J Rowland 25:49, K Callaghan 23:25, P Rodgers 16:18).

Men V50 – 1st Colchester A 50:15 (P Spowage 16:48, J Waite 16:37, A Smalls 16:49), 4th Colchester B 52:51 (P West 17:18, D Hilson 18:13, K Higgins 17:20), 10th Colchester C 58:03 (J Waterson 18:33, A Raynor 20:15, P Neville 19:14), 12th Colchester D 1:01:20 (C Regan 20:00, B Hayton 20:41, S Morgan 20:38), DNF Colchester E (K McAlinden 18:50, P Marsh 23:11).

Men V60 -1st Colchester A 56:49 (C Ridley 16:45, A Whiston 22:17, C Stevenson 17:46)