For the last time in 2023, James Rhodes brings you the weekend round up. This week it includes a number of midweek races, as well as plenty of athletes looking for a fast time on the final day of the year.

Last Chance Racing

The ever-popular Ribble Valley 10k, which incorporated the North of England Championships, brought out strong fields once again. For the vast majority of the race, Marc Scott had run alongside Emile Cairess, the latter racing for the first time since September. It took until well inside the final kilometre for Marc to move ahead, securing victory in 28:47 (28:46 chip) to Emile’s 28:52.

Steeplechase specialist Zak Seddon finished third, running inside thirty minutes for the first time in his career (29:40, 29:39 chip). In all, nine men ran inside 30 minutes, and a further twelve inside 31 minutes.

Female course record holder Jess Warner-Judd returned once more and, whilst outside her record, was a clear winner in 32:42 (32:41 chip). Over a minute behind, a close battle between Emily Kearney (33:59) and Olivia Mason (34:00) completed the podium. Olivia’s chip time, however, is two seconds faster than Emily’s (33:57 to 33:59). In fourth, Esme Davies ran 34:02.

Racing Abroad

There is a tradition for New Year’s Eve racing across Europe, with a number of fast fields assembled. The fastest was in fact the fastest of all-time, with Beatrice Chebet breaking the 5k World Record with 14:13 at the Cursa dels Nassos in Barcelona. That time improved Ejgayehu’s mark of 14:19 from 2021 by six seconds.

Taye finished second in 14:21; she now owns three of the four fastest times in history. Running almost the entire race solo, Katie Snowden finished seventh in 15:23. That places her tenth on the British all-time list in her debut at the distance. Holly Dixon was tenth (16:11). In the associated 10k, Sebastian Symington ran 31:32.

Paulos Surafel (29:14) finished fifth at the BOclassic in Bolzano in Italy, just three seconds shy of his PB set in 2021. It was his only his third race of 2023 and his first 10k of the year. In the Netherlands, Mahamed Mahamed won the Sylvestercross Soest, a cross country race that starts and finishes in sand. He completed the 10.6k challenging course in 32:50.

At the time of typing, the San Silvestre Vallecana has yet to take place in Spain. However, Rory Leonard, Scott Beattie and Ellis Cross are due to be on the start line. Similarly, the Nos Galan Races in Wales are yet to have started. Results will be added tomorrow!

Back Home

Jonathan Janes (32:58) and Thea Gray (39:14) won the St Albans New Year’s Eve 10k, whilst the Jolly Holly Jog 10k went to Ruth Sinclair (42:27) and Liam Aldridge (36:08).

It wouldn’t be a Round Up if there wasn’t at least one visit to Battersea Park. London’s fast and flat park played host to RunThrough’s Battersea Park Chase the Moon 10k on Wednesday. Ton Mackay (31:43) and Emily Robbins (35:23) finished first. The associated 5k went to Jasmine Wood (16:28) and Nathan Bunting (15:32).

Staying in London, Morgan Roberts (15:18) and Olivia Forrest (16:57) won the final Serpentine Last Friday of the Month 5k of 2023. The final Crown to Crown 5k of the year was held on Boxing Day. Olivia Forrest (18:41) and Taylor Newell (16:47) recorded victories in the event organised by Pitsea Running Club, with 226 finishers. Olivia appearing twice in the same paragraph!

Earlier in the week, the Brocagh Bay Boxing Day 10k provided victories to Gillia McCrory (37:28) and Ethan Dunn (32:43). Gillian finished over three minutes ahead of second placed Nena Cormican (41:14). Ethan meanwhile, crossed the finish line over a minute ahead of Colin Heron (33:56). Jimmy Sloan (15:47) and Tara Jayne Murphy (18:44) won the associated 5k.

Linton Taylor (32:01) and Sophie Pikett (36:31) won the Ronnie Saltwell 10k in Gateshead. Alice Hands (39:56) and James Naldrett (36:21) RunThrough’s Wimbledon Christmas 10k, whilst the 5k went to Barbara Wright (21:27) and Luke Tomsett (17:33).

Vale of Aylesbury AC’s Boxing Day 5k saw Alice Wright (17:47) and Kieran Lindars (15:58) cross the finish quickest.

More Races

Fionn O’Murchu (31:35) was a clear winner at the Hereford Couriers Christmas 10k. He crossed the line over a minute and a half before second placed Daniel Bodman (33:12). Annie Birch (36:23) ran well to record an even greater margin of victory. She finished over five minutes ahead of Addy Carter (41:39).

Across the border, Virginie Barrand had an excellent outing at the Tilli 10k. Her time of 33:27 improves her PB by nine seconds. The top three was completed by Morag Millar (35:14) and Jennifer Wetton (35:36). Three men finished inside 31 minutes, led by Robbie Ferguson (30:36) from Moray Pryde (30:44) and Calum Phillip (30:55).

Racing over ten miles, there were wins for Alex Milne (52:32) and Victoria Knight (58:27) at the Buntingford Year End 10 and Rachel Dench (64:39) and Richard Slade (55:29) at the Pednor 10. Victory went to Callum Moore (27:00) and Hannah Green (31:27) in the fourth race of the Weston Prom 5 series. Impressively, Callum of Great Western Runners has won all four races of the series.

The Revesby Xmas 10 saw Lee Mullen (61:59) and Alex Penrose (85:38) cross the finish line first. Olivia Forrest (35:17) and Declan Nattrass (36:16) did the same in the associated five mile. Olivia has been busy this week!

Daniel James (32:55) and Jamie Robinson (38:10) won the Leyland Boxing Day 10k. Kirsty Gill (41:33) and Jason Bennett (33:38) did the same at the Castle Crimbo 10k in Newcastle under Lyme.


Finally, Fast Running’s editor Robbie Britton finished third in the Classica Podiatric di San Silvestro in Italy. He clocked 27:57 on the five-and-a-bit mile course that included a couple of not insignificant climbs. It was a bit shorter than he is used to, having competed at the World 24 Hour Championships earlier this month!

On behalf of the Fast Running team, Happy New Year! Here’s to many races and PBs in the coming twelve months.