Where have all the Runners gone?
The North Midlands and the Booth Decorators Cross-countries took place last weekend with only a small number of Harriers taking part. On the Saturday at RAF Cranwell in Lincolnshire, three of our members made the journey, Steph Ilsley, Rob Norman and Andy Rose. It was another good run for Steph in the ladies 6k race, finishing 26th place in a time of 25mins 53secs, out of the 70 finishers. In the mens race over 10k, Andy Rose finished 97th in a time of 42mins 29secs while Rob Norman came 140th in 46mins 52secs out of a field of 180 runners.
The following day saw the third race in the Booth Decorators League at Trent Meadows, Long Eaton. This turned out to be a bit of a disappointing morning for the Harriers with only eleven runners from Belper on the starting line although to be fair, other clubs must have had reduced numbers, as there were only 140 finishers.
Those that did run must be congratulated, with some excellent performances over the four and half mile course. Tim Hollings lead the team in, finishing in18th position. Gavin Elliott was our next finisher in an excellent position of 44th while Karl Atton followed in 54th place. Our next two finishers, Theresa Hempsall and Andy Dakin had tremendous runs, finishing in 57th and 61st place respectively. They were followed by Phil Butt, Malcolm Weir, Roger Morgan and Rob Pearce while Rosemary Arris and Jo Southcott made up the ladies team.
On the day, the men came 7th while the ladies finished 6th and the combined team finished 6th. This has left us after three races in fifth place, in all three categories with a lot to make up, to finish in the top three.
There does seem to be a big difference in the support for the league cross-countries compared to the summer road race league where three of the races attracted nearly three hundred runners. It is everyone’s choice but a tough cross-country is excellent training and a bit of off-road running at this time of the year can be a change from pavement pounding.
The previous weekend five of our runners made the journey up North Derbyshire for this tough road race. Andy Parkin was the first of our runners to finish in 19th place, in a time of 1hr 25mins. Ron and Steph Ilsley followed with Ron finishing in 1hr 31mins and Steph in 1hr 34mins. Gavin Elliott finished in 1hr 40mins and Chris Jackson in 1hr 51mins. These times look pretty good considering it can be windy with many open stretches on the course.
Matthew Walker 10k or the Pudding Run
A record number of runners 746 runners finished this popular race with Dale Annable running a personal best of 34mins 15secs to finish fourth. Well done Dale. Further down the field we had six other runners recording some good times. Once again Phil Butt who never seems to miss this race, was the next Harrier home in 43mins 31secs. Dean Warren, Gary Fray and Jason Forres could all be well pleased with their times. Dean finished in 45mins 55secs while Gary finished in 46mins 28sec and Jason in 48mins 19secs. Our two ladies Georgina Bestwick and Jo Southcott running together finished one second apart in just over the hour. Well done to all the runners for supporting the local races.