Medals Galore for Harriers at Essex Road Relays

Colchester Harriers continued their successful start to the season with an impressive medal haul at the Essex County Road Relay Championships, held at the town’s Northern Gateway Sports Complex.

Colchester’s strong women’s team were once again in scintillating form, winning 4 medals across the four age group competitions.  New girl Lucy Davies got the whole event off to a flyer, her time of 17:11 for the 3 mile leg, the second fastest woman’s time of the day, ensuring Harriers Senior A team had a healthy lead after the first leg.  Davies was then brilliantly backed up by Victoria Primmer (18:01 – 9th fastest) and Heidi Hogan-Steele (17:25 – 4th fastest) as Harriers eased home to take the trophy for the first time since 2015.  The winning team were then able to stand back and cheer on their club mates as the Senior B team of Emma Burgess (18:14), Justine Sheekey (18:52) and Rebecca Cooke (18:37) pipped Southend AC to the bronze medal position by 12 seconds, demonstrating the depth of talent in the club’s current women’s squad.  The V40 event saw Harriers team of Laura Shewbridge (18:11), Annette Oakman (20:26) and Tracy English (17:45 – 8th fastest overall) come home in second place to a very strong Springfield Striders team whilst the V50 team took gold thanks to superb runs by Denise Morley (18:55 – fastest in her age group), Tracey Smedley (20:46) and Nicola Hilson (21:36).

Laura Shewbridge A167) leads the W40 team to silver medals.
Emma Burgess (A118) took a team bronze in the ladies race.
Team 117 (Davies, Primmer and Hogan- Steele) won the ladies race with team 118 (Burgess, Sheekey and Cooke) third
Our ladies were the top Essex team with our senior teams finishing first and third with the V40 team winning silver and the V50 team taking the gold medals.

The men were also amongst the medals with the senior quartet of Dean Williamson (13:58 – 2nd fastest overall), Nate Filer (15:31), Max Caulfield (15:23) and Jordan Middlemist (14:43) combining to take the bronze medal, holding off a strong Ilford squad by just 11 seconds. The V40 A team of Dan Widdowson (15:46), Dave Branfoot (16:14) and Jon Nears (15:57) went one better pipping Havering AC on the line to finish second with the B team of Jason Gunn, Tim Ballard and Andrea Salin finishing just outside the medals in fourth position.  The V50 trio of Paul Spowage (16:50), Jay Waite (16:59) and Kevin Higgins (16:37) took silver in the V50 event whilst Colin Ridley (16:18 – fastest in age group), Chris Stevenson (18:48) and Dave Wright (20:01) scooped the gold medal in the V60 category.

Veteran Paul Spowage was part of the V50 team that took silver medals.
The men’s A team took bronze medals.

Harriers’ performances across the senior competitions saw them end the day top of the overall medal table with three golds, three silvers and two bronze medals, with Springfield Striders second and Southend AC third.

There was also success for Colchester in the junior event as the trio of Lyla Belshaw (8:33 – fastest in age group), Maisey Wood (10:46) and Beatrice Sivyer (9:48) took bronze in the U15 girls’ event held over a 2.6km course.

Elsewhere a group of Harriers travelled down to the south coast to compete in the Brighton Marathon and 10K events.  In the marathon Lydia Callan, despite battling with injury during training, ran courageously to come home in a Personal Best time of 3:35:27 whilst Nikki Osborne finished her third road marathon in 4:50:00. In the 10K event, evergreen Adrian Mussett, in his last race before turning 50, ran an incredible time of 32:14, his fastest for six years, to finish ninth overall with Anita Mussett crossing the line in 50:30.

Essex Road Relays – full results:

Women Senior 1st Colchester Harriers A – 52:37 (Lucy Davies 17:11, Victoria Primmer 18:01, Heidi Hogan-Steele (17:25), 3rd Colchester Harriers B – 55:43 (Emma Burgess 18:14, Justine Sheekey 18:52, Rebecca Cooke 18:37), 7th Colchester Harriers C – 1:04:13 (Tina Southgate 22:00, Tracy Wellsted 22:47, Sarah Sellens 19:27).

Women V40 2nd Colchester Harriers A – 56:22 (Laura Shewbridge 18:11, Annette Oakman 20:26, Tracy English (c) 17:45), 10th Colchester Harriers B – 1:07:16 (Natasha Rice 22:48, Fran Norris 22:43, Sue Waller-Toyne 21:45).

Women V50 1st Colchester Harriers A – 1:01:16 –(Denise Morley 18:55, Tracey Smedley 20:46, Nicola Hilson 21:36).

Men Senior3rd Colchester Harriers A – 59:34 (Dean Williamson 13:58, Nate Filer 15:31, Max Caulfield 15:23, Jordan Middlemist 14:43), 11th Colchester Harriers B – 1:05:08 (Andy Jobling 16:11, Chris Sellens 15:58, Mark Thomas 17:04, Tom Cresswell (c) 15:55), 12th Colchester Harriers C – 1:07:39 (Ram Osman 14:58, Mike Smith 17:28, Dan Cook 18:15, Mark Howard 17:01), 15th – Colchester Harriers D 1:11:08 (Darrel Williams 17:29, Jack McGuire 16:49, Dan Meecham 18:25, James Plant 18:25).

Men V402nd – Colchester Harriers A – 47:57 (Dan Widdowson 15:45, Dave Branfoot 16:14, Jon Nears 15:57), 4th Colchester Harriers B – 49:55 (Jason Gunn 15:55, Tim Ballard 17:07, Andrea Salin 16:53), 7th – Colchester Harriers C – 53:22 (Paul Rodgers 17:20, Lee Holohan 18:29, John Battram 17:33), 11th – Colchester Harriers D – 56:32  (Dan Wilkinson 19:49, Duncan Scott 18:51, Richard Bodenator 17:52),  13th – Colchester Harriers E – 57:44 (Chris Manby 19:17, Paul Neville 19:31, Austen Mitchell 18:56)

Men V502nd – Colchester Harriers A – 50:26  (Paul Spowage 16:50, Jay Waite 16:59, Kevin Higgins 16:37), 5th Colchester Harriers B – 53:21 (Keith Marley 17:17, Pete West 17:38, Richard Millward 18:26), 9th – Colchester Harriers C – 57:22 (Doug O’Neill 19:10, Russell Goodridge 18:49, Andy Raynor 19:23), 12th – Colchester Harriers D – 1:01:45 (Bill Hayton 20:39, Simon Morgan 21:30, Mark Wellsted 19:36), 18th – Colchester Harriers E 1:10:06 (Pat Marsh 23:21, Adrian Cooke 23:02, Arthur Whiston 23:36).

Men V60 – 1st – Colchester Harriers A – 55:07 (Colin Ridley 16:18, Chris Stevenson 18:48, Dave Wright 20:01).