Josh Kerr targets the British mile record, regional XC championships show off the best athletes from their areas and half marathons result in PBs
The World Athletics Indoor Tour Gold took place in two locations this week, kicking off in Karlsruhe where Elliot Giles won the 800m in 1:46:78. A mention must also go to Berihu Aregawi of Ethiopia who went fifth on the world all time list for indoor 3000m after running 7:26:20. On Saturday it was over to New York for the Millrose Games where Amy Eloise Marcovc logged a fourth place performance of 8:49.49 over 3000m
Josh Kerr had set his intentions on breaking the British indoor mile record of 5:52:02, set by Peter Elliott in 1990. He came tantalisingly close to doing just that, running 3:52.27 for second place and breaking Chris O’Hare’s Scottish record in the process. The race was won by Ollie Hoare who set a new Australian record of 3:50.83. My personal hero of the night though was New Zealand’s Nick Willis who ran 3:59.71 which means that he has run a sub four minute mile for 20 years in a row.
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Closer to home there was a great run from Jenny Selman in Glasgow at the the Scottish Athtletics Indoor Championships saw her run 2:01.84 over 800m. That’s a third PB in as many races and close to Commonwealth Games standard (2.01.39).
While Josh Kerr was still stating his intentions for the mile Charlie Grice got out there and won his race over the same distance at the Razor Back Invitational, Fayetteville AR, clocking 3:57.39. In Seattle Jake Heyward clocked a fantastic 3:53.25 mile. In Australia, Nick Earl placed 12th at the Chemist Warehouse Zatopek 10 in 30:05.12.
Regional Cross Country Champioships
Over 8000m around Beckenham Place Park, Jess Gibbons took the Southern XC Champs win for Reading AC in 28:16. Despite her efforts, the team honours went to Aldershot, Farnham and District. A,F&D finished a huge 28 points clear of London Heathside, with Basingstoke and Mid Hants third. Individuallym, Niamh Brown of A,F&D was second in 29:06 and Beth Hawling third for Heathside in 29:13.
The men’s course was the longest of any of the championships, registering as just over nine miles of off-road (ish) work. Impressive work from Andy Coley-Maud (Guildford and Godalming) saw him earn his crown in 47:41 after fighting off Ben Alcock (Bedford and County) who was hot on his heels in 47:46 and Alex Teuten (Southampton AC) just a spike-length later in 47:49. Southampton left no doubt over the team results, logging 131 points. Highgate Harriers came second with 221 and Tonbridge AC third with 230. James’ photo off whatsapp of the men’s team podium or
In the Senior Women’s race (8k) at the Midlands XC Champs, Berry Hill, Mansfield, Katie Holt won with a clear lead in 28:35, holding off Lily Partridge who is working her way back into form and finished in 29:15. Mountain runner Kate Maltby was third in 29:15. Team prizes went to Birchfield Harriers (43 points), Charnwood AC (50) and City of Stoke AC (80).
Doug Musson had to cover 12k for his 37:48 victory, beating Jack Gray (37:58) and Jack Millar (38:00) in a tight top three. The team titles were much clearer in their separating – Bristol and West topped the table with a big lead of 91 points ahead of Notts AC (125) and Tipton Harriers (271)
In the North, Pontefract Park played host to and great race with a fight to the end over 8.12k at the Northern XC Champs. Eleanor Bolton’s 31:13 earned Ribble Valley Harriers the individual gold and Sophie Tarver ran 31:19 for a Wirral AC silver, though neither club featured in the team podium.
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It was great to see Georgia Taylor-Brown on the way back after Covid running 31:26 for third and assisting Sale Harriers Manchester in their third place team spot (116 points). Above them were Vale Royal who were first with 72 points and Hallamshire Harriers Sheffield close behind with 74.
12.2k was the distance required of the men and it was Hugo Milner who raced home first in 41:43 for Derby AC, just nudging out Nigel Martin (Sale Harriers – 41:50). Daniel Haworth was third in 42:17 for Matlock AC. The team titles were close with Salford winning with 142, Leeds second on 149 and Hallamshire Harriers third with 151
On the Roads Abroad and at Home
Jonny Mellor took sixth place at the Seville Half Marathon in a PB of 62:20. Omar Ahmed was 12th in 64:01 and Nick Barry clock 67:14. Sebastian Kimaru won in 59:02. Meanwhile, FastRunning’s Robbie Britton also set a new best at the Novara Half Marathon, placing fourth in 70:43 for Robbie Britton at Novara Half Marathon.
Run Through Battersea Park Chase the Moon on Wednesday night offered the normal 10 and 5k options. The 10k had a particularly good women’s field this time, as Jess Saunders crossed the line in 37:05 to keep a traffic-anger-fuelled Sam Amend in second place with 37:36. Georgina Spenceley kept the top three sub-39 clocking 38:45. A ridiculously tight men’s race resulted in the podium being populated with performances only eight seconds apart. Arthur Dickson Bell won out in 32:22, Kieran Morris was second in 32:27 and and John Hutchins third in 32:30
Over 5k Annie Birch showed the ladies how it’s done, taking her crown in 17:13. Grace Molloy was second in 17:37 and Emma Burgess third in 19:20. Another close men’s race saw Luke Oliver first over the line in 16:12, George Baily close behind in 16:18 and Oli Walker third in 16:25.
Gravesend got in on the 5/10k action on Thursday with their floodlit race. 38:03 for Patrick Hughes and 49:57 for Karen Wisby-Thomas was enough for the win over 10k. The 5k honours went to Nathan Chapman in 16:30 (over two minutes clear) and Amanda Link in 23:16. Serpentine RC’s Last Friday 5k always offers a chance for those in London to blast some lunchtime cobwebs and this month Harry Allan (U23) hammered it round Hyde Park to win in 15:22. Sage Pearce-Higgins was second in 16:29 and Stewart Overton (V40) was third in 16:25. V45 Ginevra Stoneley ran 18:56 to be fastest woman. With Clara Hartley (19:35) and Natasha Pitman (20:14) behind her.
City of Hull AC swept the board in the men’s race at the Ferriby 10, as Kris Lecher won in 50:46, Matthew Nelson was second in 52:18 and Matthew Snow third in 53:47. he first three women all broke the hour with Nicola Devine taking the win in 59:07 ahead of Helen Cross (59:22) and Lindsay Skinner (59:43).
At the Meltham Tough 10k Scott Hinchcliffe (33:03) beat Nigel Hockin (33:39) and Tom Needham (36:52). Rebecca Whalley was first woman in 41:45, ahead of Bridget Coomber and Helen Roby who both finished in 42:30. In Lancashire the St Annes 10 Mile race was won by Sam Evans in 54:33 and Ellie Fielding in 1:04:40.
A couple of hours ahead of her nearest rival Nicky Spinks won 100mile Arc of Attrition in 25:35:52 while Mark Derbyshire took the men’s victory in 19:12:48. In the Arc 50 Natalie Taylor won in 11:02:29 and Jamie Stephenson in 8:27:44.