News Update: 9th March 2020
While there was a lot of focus from the club’s point of view on the Big Half, a trio of our top runners ran in the Trafford 10k that took place on the same Sunday. The renowned trio, John Gilbert, Chris Greenwood and Russell Bentley ran well in tricky conditions. From what I hear the wind was stronger than it was down south. The organisers of this race always put together a good quality field and fast times are the order of the day. This was reflected by the fact that John ran 31:22 for twentieth place. Chris and Russell weren’t far behind John. Chris ran an excellent 31:37 for 25th place while Russell was only two places behind in 27th. Chris must have been pleased after having his National race ruined by a troublesome stich. His time wasn’t that far off his road PB and put him second in the V45 rankings. His time was a mere two seconds off that of Kojo Kyereme’s leading time – a time recorded in Doha – probably more conducive to fast times than the cold and windy north west. Russell was apparently just a shade slower than he was in the previous year’s race. However, he came home in exactly the same position – so can’t be faulted for consistency.
Last Saturday, March 7th, several of our runners competed for Kent in the Inter Counties Cross – Country championships. We actually had a number of runners selected to run for Kent, but some gave it a miss as they had other priorities. Jim Allchin ran well – not far off the top fifty in this high- quality race. Jim was 57th while Niall Stewart was 139th. In addition, a Kent AC member Sam Marshall ran in the colours of Oxfordshire – he was 247th in a field of nearly three hundred. On the women’s side we had Sarah Hanley getting a Kent County vest and running well. Sarah made the top hundred, 93rd out of a field of over two hundred and fifty. She was part of a Kent County team that came seventh while Jim and Niall’s men’s county team were sixth in the team competition.
Another event that took place over the weekend was the British Masters Indoor Championships at Lee Valley. As many will be aware, longstanding Kent AC member Joe Appiah has had considerable success as a masters’ runner. He’s won many medals and is a GB international. He won the V45 60m hurdles and narrowly missed out on the 60m sprint title. Whilst Joe has considerable experience on the boards, another Kent AC member taking part in the championships is something of a novice when it comes to indoor running. The person in question is none other than club secretary, John Barron. Regulars at Ladywell will no doubt have noticed John being put through his paces with the sprint group. It looks as though the gruelling sessions are paying off as John registered an impressive 800m PB on Sunday when he ran 2:31:45. He was seventh in the race but significantly his time would have placed him second in the V65 age group. John turns 65 in May and if his form holds for the outdoor season it looks as though he’s set to be near the top of his new age group rankings.