Marathon men conquer Snowdonia while Harborough AC show cross country runners turn on the style
Long distance specialist Simon Poynton was accompanied by Harborough AC teammates Jamie McAllister, Nick Turner-Henke and Graeme Rolfe for the 37th running of the gruelling Snowdonia Marathon.
The race featured ascents and descents through the scenery of Bwlch Llanberis and Nant Gwynant, and the arduous wall-like climb to Waunfawr, before the final descent into Llanberis.
More than 2,300 runners completed the 26.2-miles course, and first back for the men in yellow was Turner-Henke (3:54:23).
A week later Rolfe was running the third leg in the senior men’s A team at Mansfield’s Berry Hill Park in the English National Cross Country Relay Championships – covering 5k over undulating and muddy ground in rainy conditions.
The team finished 137th with Rich Hudson (22:23) quickest on the day, gaining 15 places on leg two.
David Maclean ran leg one and Peter Attenborough leg four.
The B team of Iain Barber, David Ward, Kevin Dinsdale and Martin Hughes finished 156th.
The senior women fielded a strong A team, Sarah Ward, Hannah Eveleigh, Jacquie Hanmer finishing 41st with Charnwood the only Leicestershire team to finish higher, with two internationals in their team.
Eveleigh ran the quickest for Harborough over the 3k course, clocking 11:56.
Mel Brocklebank, Jules Chapman and Tracy Southwell brought the B team home in 121st and Marise Taylor, Lianne Brooks and Lin Farrow combined as the C team finished in 125th.
Lily Harris (8:53), Amber Dowman (9:25) and Erin Taylor (10:50) were undaunted by the weather and the atmosphere of a major national championship, making their debut at this level in the under 13s race run over a 2k course.
They delivered a creditable 73rd place finish, while the under 17 women followed up their recent medals at the Midlands Championships with another strong performance over a 2.5k course, achieving Harborough’s best position of the day in 27th.
Club chairman Will Clapp said: “Anyone who was there will tell you that the conditions were designed for cross country running – rain, wind and mud and not for the faint-hearted.
"On days like these you want to get your race done, put something warm and dry on and get away.
"For those who are managing teams or supporting runners in other races it can turn into a long day, with just a tent for occasional respite from the elements, so our thanks as always go to the team managers and organisers.
"This coming weekend sees the North Mids Cross Country League races on our doorstep at Glebe Park in Corby, so we’re hoping for a sea of yellow vests on display.
"The first race goes at 12.30pm, with the men’s race concluding matters at 2.20pm.”