A strong contingent of North Herts Road Runners delivered a series of good performances at the most popular event in the local racing scene’s Christmas calendar – the Buntingford 10.
Stewart Overton headed the 16-strong team of Squirrels, securing a podium finish with third place and a new best time of 56.11 over the 10-mile course. Looking to ‘push for a good time, Overton said he ‘started fast with the aim of settling in before the hills arrived and with a pack of 3 other runners we reached 5 miles in just under 28 minutes’. After dropping off the pack he managed to ‘move back in around 8 and a half miles’. With 300 metres to go and coach Karen Dodsworth ‘shouting advice’, he managed to ‘kick on for 3rd place’.
Matt Sayers (6th), Rob Harris (15th) and Vince Wright (24th) were not far behind, with Wright transferring his fine recent cross-country form to the roads to knock almost four minutes off his previous best time for the 10 mile distance with 1.03.46. Susan Mansfield recorded 1.26.43 in her debut over 10 miles.
Dave Braybrook just missed his 1.30 target with 1.31.58 and said he ‘would have been just under my target if it wasn’t for the last mile – my legs had nothing left to give’.
Full Buntingford 10 results:
Stewart Overton, 56:11; Matthew Sayers, 57:57; Rob Harris 01:01:12; Vincent Wright, 01:03:46; Peter Sibbett, 01:09:26; Ian Harvey, 1.11.42; Caroline Thrussell, 01:12:10; Stuart Cocks, 01:15:25; Mike Bullock, 1.17.17; Dervla Downing, 01:17:24; Chris Poole, 01:23:21; Lucy O’Connor, 01:24:39; Matt Roberts, 01:25:51; Susan Mansfield, 1.26.43; Helen Harbon, 01:26:54; Matt Ankers, 01:31:40; Dave Braybrook, 01:31:58; Andrew Porter, 1.34.20; Hailey Batson, 01:44:57; Brian Bailey, 01:46:49
Ian Sutcliffe took first prize in the 70-plus age group at the Cambridge 10k with an impressive 54.58, closely followed by Allison Blunt with a new personal best of 58.36 and Elwyn Howell in 55.07.
Ultra-distance specialist Sue Foot ticked off yet another marathon at the Great Barrow ‘Triple Tipple’. Foot admitted she ‘had been suffering with foot pain and not long ago had the flu, but still wanted to get one more marathon in before the end of the year’. She finished in ‘4.46 with lots of walking breaks!’.
The Serpentine 5k was also on the Christmas agenda for some London-based NHRR members, with Darren Matussa completing the 5k Hyde Park course in 18.58 to round off what he said had been ‘a quiet year for me racing-wise’. Team-mate Stewart Overton also took part, finishing in 16.19.
37 Squirrels flew the NHRR flag (or vest) at Parkruns across Britain and beyond over the festive weekend, with Rhia Botha first female at Alberts Farm, Johannesburg, in 23.40 and Sarah Millhouse and John Russell popping up at Parkruns in Australia and the USA respectively. Ed Price was first finisher at Tyne Green Parkrun in 17.06.
NHRR superheroes Susan Mansfiled and Mike Bullock tackled Stevenage Parkrun dressed as Batwoman and Spiderman respectively, with Susan reporting that ‘Mike needed to use all his Spider senses and help from BatWoman to navigate the course as his hero face mask reduced visibility down to zero’. They finished together in 28.26.
Full NHRR Parkrun results this week:
Peter Clarke, 22.24; James Dalton, 22.32; Ian Datlen, 23.20; Dave Braybrrok, 28.52; Angeliki Shearstone, 28.59; Adam Wilson, 29.48; James Poulton, 30.01; Philip Flack, 40.13, Steve Brenton, 54.40
Stuart Cocks, 24.05; Chris Poole, 25.44; Hayley Cocks, 34.32
Claire O’Sullivan, 25.39; Naomi Parkinson, 26.24; Jillian Boys, 26.58; Russell Hagan, 27.22; Susan Mansfield and Mike Bullock, 28.26Danielle Lister, 28.28; Helen Giffin, 28.46; Elwyn Howell, 29.04; Carina Quayle, 30.41; Glyn Blakey, 32.53
Ellie Scott, 24.46
Darren Matussa, 24.29
Brian Judkins, 34.27
Ed Price, 17.06
Carl Haskell, 22.45; Abbie Haskell, 35.25; Vicky Haskell, 35.29
Steve Williamson, 23.37
Bury St Edmunds
Pat Norris, 40.19
Andrew Robson, 24.01
Alberts Farm, South Africa
Rhia Botha, 23.40
Roosevelt Island, DC
John Russell, 26.16
Sarah Millhouse, 28.05
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