Highwoods Park run off to a fine start

The Club were out in force as the Town celebrated the arrival of a second Park run to help take the pressure off Colchester Castle which is seeing increasing numbers every Saturday morning. With the two runs starting at the same time at different ends of the town it is hoped to level things out more, however the first running at Highwoods saw an impressive 275 runners take part, while the Castle Park numbers only dropped marginally with 375 turning out. So even on the first day another 150 runners appeared and this was on the day when the Majors 5km Big Run, which attracted around 200 runners was also taking place at Essex University.

The Highwoods event is a tough affair making the Castle course seem quite tame and takes roughly 90 seconds longer to run due to the cross country and hills. It is a superb run though and will encourage even more people to make a fresh start on a Saturday morning. Harrier established 14 age category records on the day as they turned out in force to wish the event well. Ramadam Osman won at a canter in 16m 37s to set the standard to be beaten, Ed Mitchell was runner up in 17m 00s and Angus Holford third in 17m 29s. For the ladies Milly Presland 20m 37s, Andrea James 22m 15s and Debbie Cattermole 22m 25s mirrored the Harriers men with another 1,2,3.

The 14 age category records were set by Danny Millward, Milly Presland, Ramadam Osman, Angus Holford, Rebecca Cooke, Andrea James, Ed Mitchell, Allen Smalls, Pete West, David Wright , Arthur Whiston, Alexandra Hennessy, Kate Sandercock and Debbie Cattermole.

The Castle Park run saw Ian Haw runner up in 18m 29s with Thomas Palmer 4th in 18m 58s and James Waterson 5th in 19m 09s. Ellie Mayne won the ladies race in 21m 38s with junior athlete Alexandra Bell-Cobbold runner up in 21m 54s. Jordi Moat was 4th in 22m 18m. Ziggy Lampton won the Mersea Cudmore Grove Park run in 18m 55s. Half way around the world at Christchurch, New Zealand Rachel Richardson-Wright completed Hagley Park in 30m 07s while Helen Taczynski was first lady to finish at the Bognor Regis Park run in 20m 31s.

The Mayors 5km Big Run at Essex University saw Ermeas Aferwerki run away from the field to coast home with Jason Gunn 2nd.

The Essex 20 mile road race at Rochford saw Melissa Dowell clock 2h 40m 28s to take the Essex bronze medal in the over 45 age category with a terrific run in windy conditions. Nathan Filer ran a superb 1h 59m 06s for 26th place, James Wright clocked 2h 05m 01s for 43rd place. Paul Preston was 55th in 2h 08m 19s, Paul Rodgers 60th in 2h 09m 22s, Keith Marley 92nd in 2h 16m 02s, Gavin Scanlon 106th in 2h 18m 54s and Jay Waite 141st in 2h 27m 16s.

Allen Smalls, although still recovering from injury, ran two marathons in eight days finishing the North Downs marathon in 6th spot and then ran the South Downs marathon held at Steyning in very windy conditions in under 4 hours. Fay Smalls completed the half marathon at Steyning.

Simon Miller ran a good 1h 38m 28 in the popular Cambridge Half Marathon which saw more than 8,300 runners finish. Cambridge based Colchester Harrier Lucy Mapp was 38th lady to finish in 1h 30m 58s.

The start of the first Highwoods Park run on Saturday morning

Paul Preston and Paul Rodgers both had good runs in the Essex 20 on Sunday