Jemma Reekie pips Laura Muir in a photo finish to garner her first sub 2 minute 800m, Josh Kerr goes fastest this season over 1500m, Ann Marie McGlynn blasts her way to a sub 15 5k and Carla Molinaro obliterate the LEJOG FKT. It’s not just the weather that’s hotting up right now.

Want a last chance to get in some virtual racing? The SOAR X TOUR is our way of staying true to the pursuit of summer speed. With a three-staged virtual races series, open to runners worldwide racers test themselves over 1km, 1 mile and 5km consecutively over a 10 day period, with both stage and overall rankings and prizes up for grabs.

Return to racing for Reekie & Muir

The Triveneto Meeting in Trieste, Italy on Saturday saw Scots Laura Muir and Jemma Reekie battle it out in over 800m.

This was an exciting chance to see who would win – the experienced Muir, who has worked her way back from injury or Reekie who was in stunning indoor form pre lockdown.

It was Reekie who was victorious and “happy to get a sub two outdoors for the first time”, doing so convincingly with a time of 1:59.52 – nearly two seconds faster than her previous outdoor best.

It was a thrilling race, with 5 time European champion Muir just a whisker behind her training partner, running 1:59.54 and Hedda Hynne of Norway clocking the same time but being placed third.

More PBs on track returns

Also rep’ing for Scotland, but a little further away in the USA was Josh Kerr. Portland Track hosted the third in it’s Big Friendly series : The Revenge of the Friendly.

Kerr, who is out there training with the Brooks Beasts stormed home in 3:34.53 to win the 1500m. Brookes tell us that the time makes him fastest in the world this season. To be fair we’re not quite sure what the season is, but it’s flipping fast regardless.

At the Pfungstadt Gala in Germany, Josh Lay (Rugby & Northants / Loughborough Students) ran a huge PB to take gold over 1500m in 3:38.75 ahead local gents Markus Probst (3:39.74) and Ilyas Osman (3:40.52).

Mansfield & Loughborough Student athlete Luke Duffy also took to the track and wiped nearly three seconds of his PB to finish 10th in 3:45.58.

Fresh from setting a NI Women’s 10k record just a few weeks ago, Letterkenny AC’s Ann-Marie McGlynn (V40) “finally went Sub 16 minutes on the track” (her words, not ours), at the “Night of 5k PBs” Pop Up Race in Kildare, clocking 15:20.7 and a 70s last 400m.

Whoriskey & Edgar claim NI & Ulster 10,000m titles

Athletics NI saw record entries to the NI & Ulster 10,000m championships at the Mary Peters track on Friday.

In a mixed race, Catherine Whoriskey of City of Derry AC Sparta came out comfortably on top for the women in 36:43.17. She was followed by Sarah Kelly (Inishowen AC) in 37:19.53 and Finn Valley’s Cassie Lagan in 38:25.60.

James Edgar of host club, COLAC, won out in the men’s race thanks to a 30:44.01. His was a slightly less clear win with Conan McCaughey (North Belfast Harriers) chasing him down to take second in 30:55.93 and Andrew Annett (Mourne Runners) in third with 30:58.91.

The other men’s race was won by Timothy Johnston – Mourne Runners – 33:07.01. Second went to Connor Curran – North Belfast Harriers – 33:09.08 and third to Mark McAvoy – North Belfast Harriers – 33:34.20.

More quality racing on the track

The Lisburn AC Invitational saw some fine performances as athletes sharpen their competitive edges post lockdown;

Men’s 800m
Dylan McBride – COLAC – 1:55.46
Benji Davies – Peterborough – 1:56.98
Niall McKnight – Annadale – 1:57.17

Women’s 800m
Katie Kirk – UU – 2:05.49
Iseult O’Donnell – Dublin – 2:07.21
Ellie Harnett – UCD AC – 2:07.93

Men’s 3000m
Neil Johnson – Annadale – 8:11.06
Liam Dee – England – 8:17.30
Johnny Whan – Conliffe – 1:17.95

Mixed 3,000m, Women’s results
Rachel Gibson – North Down – 10:03.72
Aiofe McGreevy – Lagan Valley – 10:16.63
Robyn McKee – Dromore – 10:21.74

Championchip Ireland Forestside elite 5km & 10km

In the Championchip Ireland Forestside, EIKON Lisburn 10km race James Hunt (Cardiff AAC) ducked under 30 to finish victorious in 29:43.

Pontypridd’s Paul Graham was second in 30:33 and Josh Lunn brought home third for Cardiff AAC in 30:34. Clara Evans was the only woman competing in the elite 10km race, clocking 34:02.

In the elite 5km Jenny Nesbitt of Cardiff AAC was in action of her appearance at the Podium 5k next weekend.

She clocked 16:13 to finish first female. Nakita Burke of Letterkenny AC PB’d to take second in 16:33 and Kerry O’Flaherty was third in 17:06.

For the men it was Eoghan Totten (Newcastle and District AC) who was first over the line in 14:36. Just missing out on sub 15 was Matthew Neil, with a tantalising 15:01 for second but at least well ahead of COLAC’s Christopher Madden in 15:17 for third.

There were also several ‘non elite’ races taking place. The half marathon was won by Colin Heron (70:59) and Dawn Houston (89:40), the 10km by Frank Cunningham (36:29) and Gemma McDonald (38:53) and the 5km by David McAfee (17:07) and Anna Gardiner (18:01).


Molinaro caps a week of stunning FKTs

After John Kelly and Damian Hall battled it out over the Penine way and Beth Pascall slayed the Bob Graham Round last week, this week it was the turn of LEJOG to undergo a record rewrite. Carla Molinaro covered the 874 miles in 12 days 30 minutes and 40 seconds – 10 hours quicker than Sharon Gayter’s 2019 record.

Molinaro, who has represented Ultra powerhouse Team Massmart in South Africa, is no stranger to big challenges. She has previously run 900km in 20 days, with the final day being Comrades marathon at which she gained a Gold medal and 9th place.

Despite that Carla said this was “ was the hardest thing I’ve ever had to do in my life… battling the brutal winds and rain for 24hrs and trying to stay awake all night [but] finishing this morning bloody worth it!”

The ‘furlough pro’ right on form

Another slightly more out-of-the-box challenge being bossed this week was the PizTri Vertical race, which covers 3.4km and 1000m of elevation.

Ireland’s Zak Hanna put himself in the mix from the start, taking a gamble that paid off big time when he finished in 35:14 and third place, just 11s behind Italy’s Davide Magnini and just over a minute off winner Henri Aymonod’s 34:10.

We believe that he may also be running the 21km/1200m Fletta Trail race today but are awaiting results

Zak Hanna. Photo: PizTri Vertikal

First return to races in England

Back to more “normal” racing, the Hoveton Hall 5k (Norfolk) took place this week. Understandably, the home club was dominant, taking all three podium places in both the men’s and women’s races.

Madelene Bacon, took what was probably an easy win in 20:50, given that her PB is a minute and a half faster. Memphis Symonds (U17) who is also a consistent sub 20 runner finished second in 21:50, and V60 Jane Clarke ran her first official 5k in a few years to pick up bronze in 22:4.

For the men it was a 15:53 from Willam Cork that earned first place, second was Sam Todd’s 17:02 and Luke Alden clocked 17:02 for third.

Fast Running proud to sponsor Podium 5km

Looking ahead, we may still have no certainty around London Marathon but one thing we can be certain of is that the Podium 5k next weekend is going to be on fire!

Places filled up in record time and with a line up featuring Adam Clarke, Alex Yee, Marc Scott and Phil Sesemann for the gents and Jess Judd, Jenny Nesbitt, Verity Ockenden, Jip Vastenberg, Aly Dixon and SO many more fast fast women. Well, you’d be an idiot not to watch it.

You’d also be an idiot not to sponsor it, which is what we’ve done!

See you next weekend for some storming results.

Want a last chance to get in some virtual racing? The SOAR X TOUR is our way of staying true to the pursuit of summer speed. With a three-staged virtual races series, open to runners worldwide racers test themselves over 1km, 1 mile and 5km consecutively over a 10 day period, with both stage and overall rankings and prizes up for grabs.

Want to run faster? For just £30 per month athletes are provided with a Final Surge plan for each day of the week, coaching advice from Robbie Britton and Tom Craggs, as well as access to the unique Fast Running Performance community.

If you would like more information on joining the project, click here