The English National Relays were held at Berry Hill Park Mansfield and the Harriers had four teams on the starting line. We had a ladies team and three men’s teams, three being the maximum number of teams in one category. In heavy rain our runners erected the club tent for the first time and it came in extremely useful.
Since before lunch the younger age group races had been in progress but just after two o’clock it was time for the ladies race. Fortunately the rain had subsided by then but it was going to be very wet over the course. Steph Ilsley led our team of three ladies off, over the distance of 3k, to hand over to Sharon Mellors. Lia Ottosen took over for the final lap, bringing the team home in 74th place. I am sure all three were pleased with their performances especially considering the conditions which were a lot worse than last year when both Steph and Sharon ran. The winners this year were Charnwood AC who was also winners last year.
The men’s race started in its usual gung-ho fashion but our first leg runners, Alex Duthie, Andy Basey and Malcolm Weir all started rather more conservatively, as the distance of 5k is only short but there is still some tough work to be done. Alex handed over to Dale Annable who had a great run, finishing as easily the fastest Harrier. Dale handed over to Tom Moulder who then handed over to Mark Riches to run the final leg for the first team. The team worked hard but just finished outside the top hundred finishing in 105th place.
The second team saw Andy Basey, Andy Rose and Jack Dakin all ran very similar times with Rob Norman just a minute away from the other three. This saw a consistent effort by the team which finished in 137th place.
The third team of Malcolm Weir, Andy Dakin, Rob Pearce and Len Foulk ran their socks off and were rewarded with some good performances in finishing in 155th place. The winners this year in the men’s race were Stockport Harriers who were not regarded as one of the favourites.
Full Results Ladies:
Steph Ilsley 13.24 Sharon Mellors 13.40 Lia Ottosen 14.19
Alex Duthie 20.48 Dale Annable 18.28 Tom Moulder 20.22 Mark Riches 22.20
Andy Basey 21.12 Andy Rose 21.44 Jack Dakin 21.50 Rob Norman 22.47
Malcolm Weir 23.20 Andy Dakin 24.00 Rob Pearce 25.12 Len Foulk 27.14
Thanks and well done to all the runners who took part to make it a successful although damp day for Belper Harriers.