Invitations to UK Trials - 31/12/2010
Four Gloucester Athletic Club members have been invited to compete at the Aviva UK Trials and Championships at Sheffield in February.
The meeting doubles as the UK championships as well as part of the selection process for the GB team bound for the European Indoors Championships to be held in Paris in April.
Andrew de Camps and Nico Constanti have been invited to compete in the men’s 800 metres, an event at which de Camps is the reigning Midland champion, whilst Gemma Turtle has been invited to compete in both the women’s 1500 and 3000m, the distance at which she ran in last year’s World Indoors championships, in Qatar. Irish international Rose-Anne Galligan has also been invited to run in the women’s 1500 metres.
Paul de Camps, coach of son Andrew and Constanti, says “I am delighted for the two lads as the opportunity to run at this level, against the very best indoors runners in the country, doesn’t come along very often. It will be a good learning experience for them both.”
Boxing Day 4 mile - 26/12/2010
Severn AC's Boxing Day 4 mile road race in Hardwicke gave Gloucester AC athletes the opportunity to shine and blow away some cobwebs over the Christmas break.
Jeremy Mower and Arthur Daley were involved in a race-long tussle, before Mower’s superior sprinting speed over the last 200 metres saw him prevail to finish in fifth place overall and first V40 with a time of 24 minutes 11seconds. Daley placed sixth overall and first V60 in 24 minutes 30 seconds, which was not only a new V60 course record, but his fastest 4-mile clocking since the 1980s, a new Gloucester club age-group best, beating his own standard by 57 seconds, and a time that ranked him 4th in the UK for 2010. A great way to finish the year!
Further back, Philip Du Plessis ran 30 minutes 11 seconds to place second in the V40 section.
Gloucester's women dominated their event. Cross-country team captain, Michelle Stark, ran an even-paced race to win the ladies race in 27 minutes 59 seconds. Another Gloucester runner to judge the pace well was Christine Campbell, whose time of 30 minutes 14 seconds gave her second place in the ladies category.
Mower selected for Wales - 18/12/2010
Gloucester Athletic Club’s Jeremy Mower has been selected to run for Wales at the Anglo-Celtic Plate 100km road race championships in Perth, Scotland next March.
Mower has been an integral part of the Welsh ultra-distance squad for several seasons and earlier this year he was part of the team that took silver medals behind England in the team competition.
Whilst ultra-distance running is not for the faint-hearted, Mower seems to excel. A previous Welsh champion, he has been ranked number one in the UK and held numerous course records. He is also the latest athlete to join the ranks of Gloucester “ultra-greats” – rubbing shoulders with the likes of Dave Dowdle, Martin Daykin, Chris O’Carroll and Ken Leyshon who dominated the European scene in the 1980s.
Christmas 5 mile Handicap (Plock Court) - 18/12/2010
Gloucester Athletic Club members were prominent in the Christmas 5-mile cross-country handicap race held at Plock Court on Saturday. Despite the conditions, which were described by race organiser Terry Haines as being some of the worst he had ever witnessed for racing, the Gloucester runners all put in some very pleasing performances
The first Gloucester club runner home was Omar Alim. Still in his first season of regular racing, he took advantage of a generous handicap and held on to his lead until less than 300m from the finish when he was caught and overtaken by Severn starlet, Kyran Hale. Alim’s second place will give him increased confidence going into the second half of the winter season on both cross-country and road.
Gloucester ladies captain Michelle Stark continued her recent excellent form when finishing as the leading lady. Currently enjoying the best form of her career, she is clearly benefitting from the work she is doing under the guidance of her coach Arthur Daley. Stark’s next target will be to lower her best time for five miles on the road in the new year.
Gloucester took further age group category wins with Dave Gresswell (M40), Arthur Daley (M60) and Dave Spackman, who again demonstrated his knowledge of the course to win the M65 category.
The Gloucester team was made up by one of the club’s most improved performers over the country this year, Christine Campbell, who is also reaping the rewards of consistent training under the watchful eye of Daley.
After the race, Dave Gresswell said “Today’s performances showed just what regular training and racing can do. All of our runners here today continue to improve and it will be interesting to see how they progress over the coming months.”
11/12/2010 - Gloucester AC Christmas Dinner
The club Christmas Dinner and Presentation evening 2010 was again held at the Gloucester Conservative Club
Images taken from the evening can be viwed by clicking on the thumbnails Thank you to Mike Storey and his team for setting up another fine event
Gloucestershire Cross-Country League (Men) - 11/12/2010
The third fixture of this season’s Gloucestershire Cross-Country League took place at Blackbridge, Gloucester on Saturday and saw Gloucester Athletic Club’s senior men’s team finish 3rd to achieve their highest team placing of the year.
Simon Fortnam led the team home for the first time. In his first cross-country race for 14 months due to injury, he started off slowly before gradually moving through the field to finish strongly in 26th place. Team captain Dave Gresswell produced another consistent performance, placing 33rd, whilst Jeremy Mower overcame an error of pace judgment to finish in 37th position.
Next home for the city team was Wayne Mayer. Still a relative novice at cross-country racing, he continued his improvement to finish in 50th place, just ahead of Arthur Daley (53rd) and Ian Summers (54th).
The men’s ‘B’ team took second place in their category. Mark Ingram and Paul Nash, in 75th and 76th place respectively led the team in, followed by Matt Wade in 85th place. Matt Powell finished in a clutch of runners in 97th position whilst Mark Thrall (115th) and V65 Dave Spackman (120th) completed the scoring team with Paul Loveridge completing the Gloucester contingent in 131st place.
Afterwards, Dave Gresswell said “After the disappointment of the Birmingham League race last week, this was a good run by our team. We have to use this league to blood our new and developing runners for the bigger challenges that lie ahead so I’m pleased with the way they performed today”.
1st P Wyle (Bristol & West); 2nd D Roper (Chelt & Co); 3rd G Hughes (Dursley & Dist)
1st Chelt & Co 75 pts; 2nd Clevedon 193; 3rd Gloucester 253.
1st Clevedon 108 pts; 2nd Chelt & Co 158; 3rd Team Bath 166; 4th Gloucester 173.
Gloucestershire Cross-Country League (Women) - 11/12/2010
Gloucester Athletic Club’s ladies team showed signs of recovery from illness and injury to take a much improved seventh place in the Gloucestershire Cross-Country League race at Blackbridge, Gloucester on Saturday.
Gemma Collier returned to lead the city team home. In a very close field, she battled strongly to finish in 12th place. Team captain Michelle Stark finished less than one minute behind in 20th position, whilst Anne-Marie Edwards completed the scoring team, in 19th place.
Christine Campbell (52nd) and Vanessa Anderton (87th) completed the Gloucester team.
After the race, Michelle Stark said “It was pleasing to see some of the girls back running again after being hit by injury and illness. There’s a long way to go, but we’re certainly improving with each race”.
1st Angie Sadler (Tewkes); 2nd Kate Britten (Clevedon); 3rd Kate George (CLC Striders)
1st CLC Striders (A) 21pts; 2nd Leamington 50; 3rd Clevedon (A) 50
1st Chelt & Co 56 pts; 2nd Team Bath 70; 3rd Kidderminster & Stourport 72.
Gloucestershire Cross-Country League (Young Athletes) - 11/12/2010
Gloucester Athletic Club’s youngsters were again in action at the recent Gloucestershire Cross-Country League fixture at Blackbridge.
In the under-11 girls’ race, the city trio of Bryony Goddard-Jones in 9th position, Kezia Smith (12th) and Charlotte Sprason (16th) narrowly missed out on 3rd place in the team event, placing 4th. Jasmin Emery was the city club’s sole representative in the under-13 girls’ event and ran well to take 10th place, whilst Becky Summers ran solidly to take 9th position in the under-17 ladies race.
The under-11 boys’ race again saw Harry Wells finish in the top 10 as he took 7th place and Andrew Bowers continued to gain valuable experience when placing 20th in the under-15 boys’ race. There was a mini-upset in the under-17 men’s event where Rhys Park of Bristol & West narrowly beat Severn’s Kyran Hale into second place. Gloucester’s Adam Thrall continued his development as he took 4th place.
Gloucester’s Coaching Co-ordinator, Bob Purcell, said afterwards “Although we only had a small number of youngsters competing here today, they all showed plenty of commitment and promise. We’ll be bringing in more distance-running coaches to work with the youngsters soon, when I hope we’ll have larger numbers running”.
Indoor Open Meeting, Cardiff - 11/12/2010
After having spent the past two months concentrating on cross-country racing and strength training, Gloucester Athletic Club’s top middle distance runner Andrew De Camps opened his indoor season at the open meeting at Cardiff on Saturday.
He warmed up over the unfamiliar distance of 300m, winning his heat in 37.81 seconds before turning his attention to the 600 metres where he confirmed his status as UK number 1 for 2010 by comfortably winning his race in 1:23.34s, setting the fastest time of the 32 competitors in the process.
Afterwards, he said “Considering I’ve done no speed work or specific training for indoors racing, I’m happy with how the day went. I missed the first half of the last summer season due to injury and today has shown that I’m getting the fitness back.”
Some achievements 2010
As 2010 draws to a close, Gloucester Athletic Club can look back on its involvement in the major international competitions over the year with considerable pride.
The first international championship of the year was the Indoor World Championships held in the Qatar capital of Doha. Here, Gemma Turtle made her GB debut in the 3000 metres. Turtle had gained selection for the championships with a stunning personal best time of 9 mins 02.81 seconds when placing second in the trials at Sheffield and although unable to repeat that performance in Doha, she nevertheless acquitted herself well in her first major international fixture.
Wearing the green vest of Ireland in the 1500 metres at the same championships was Rose-Anne Galligan, in her first international championship as a senior. She had to qualify for the Worlds the hard way, for despite producing some impressive results during the indoor season, she still had to achieve the qualifying standard. She attained this when competing in the Spanish indoor championships down in Valencia, recording an excellent 4 mins 12.72 seconds. She was unable to improve on that time, but was another to learn from the experience.
Later in the summer, Galligan again represented her country over 800 metres, firstly in the European Team Championships in Hungary and then in the European Championships in Barcelona. The stifling heat of the Catalan capital was clearly to her liking as she ran a new personal best time of 2 mins 01.76 seconds.
The final international championships of the year were the Commonwealth Games in Delhi, in October. The city club had no members competing, but there was plenty of interest as two throwers coached by Gloucester’s Lorraine Shaw - Carys Parry and Zoe Derham, representing Wales and England respectively – both progressed to the final. In an enthralling competition, Parry took the silver medal with a season’s best throw of 64.93 metres and Derham the bronze with a throw of 64.04 metres.
Club Chairman Andy McKenzie says “These athletes and coaches have all brought great honour to the club and city and we hope it continues.”
It shall continue, for Beverley Jones shall be competing in the discus and shot putt in the International Paralympic Championships in Christchurch, New Zealand, in January to start what the Gloucester club hopes shall be another momentous year.
Midland Women’s Cross-Country League - 04/12/2010
Illness and injury decimated Gloucester Athletic Club’s ladies cross-country team meaning that only Chris Campbell was able to compete in the second Midland Women’s Cross Country League race at Perry Barr on Saturday.
Nevertheless, Campbell produced one of her best ever runs in a Gloucester vest as she paced herself well over the difficult early stages before picking up the tempo to finish a very creditable 169th.
Birmingham & District Cross-Country League - 04/02/2010
Gloucester Athletic Club’s men battled gamely against the cream of the Midland’s distance runners in the second round of the Birmingham & District Cross-Country League Division One fixture at Perry Barr on Saturday.
Even before the season started, Gloucester knew that they would be competing at a level far higher than their current crop of runners had ever experienced and the gulf in class was evident as they finished 15th of 16 teams in Saturday’s race.
With the odds stacked against them, the city runners stuck to their task and there were several much-improved performances throughout the team, none more so than from Andrew de Camps. A track specialist, de Camps made light of the difficult conditions as he led the team home in 101st position, an improvement of over 30 places on his showing in the first round. This was de Camps last cross-country race before he turns his attention to the indoor scene, where he will be hoping to challenge for a place on the GB team that competes in the European Indoor Championships next March.
Second runner home for Gloucester and in his first race following a lengthy injury lay-off was Luke Herbert, in 105th place. He will be hoping for a spell of consistent, injury-free training and racing over the next month in an effort to kick-start his season.
Captain Dave Gresswell was third man home in 131st. Lee Smith, making his first appearance of the winter, tracked Gresswell throughout before tiring over the closing stages to finish in 140th position.
Gloucester’s fifth scorer was Arthur Daley in 153rd place. Now a seasoned veteran competing in the V60 age group locally, Daley again belied his years to finish ahead of many athletes who were not even born when he made his first appearance in this league.
Completing the scoring six and another to improve on his performance in the opening race, was Mark Ingram, who finished in 162nd place.
Immediately behind Ingram, in 163rd was Omar Alim, in his first season of cross-country running, with another newcomer, Matt Powell, in 180th place. Both runners made considerable improvements on their first Birmingham League race.
Paul Loveridge (194th), Humphrey Phillips (198th) and Mike Anderton (208th) completed the Gloucester team.
Though disappointed by the result, team captain Gresswell said “We have no excuses. Our runners all tried their best, but it just wasn’t good enough for this level. Even though we were missing one or two runners due to injury and illness, they wouldn’t have made much difference. This really is the best league in the country and it is a privilege to run against runners of this quality.”
Brighton 10k - 21/11/2010
Gloucester AC athletes Gemma Turtle and Simon Fortnam made the long trip to Sussex for the 27th running of the Brighton 10km road race on Sunday.
Turtle, in her first race since July because of injury, ran an excellent race in the womens section against international quality oppositon. In a tight finish only 10 seconds covered Liz Yelling in second place, Justina Heslop in third and Gemma in fourth in 33:52 (chip time 33:47).
In the men’s race Simon Fortnam had his best race of an injury hit year to finish 62nd in 35:35 (chip time 35:33).
Gloucestershire Cross-Country League/Women (Cheltenham) - 20/11/2010
Gloucester Athletic Club’s ladies team produced another solid performance to finish seventh team in the second Gloucestershire Cross-Country League race at Cheltenham on Saturday.
Kim Drinkwater showed the way home for the city ladies when finishing in 15th place. Work commitments have limited Kim’s racing opportunities recently but she showed no rustiness as she turned out her best performance for several months.
Team captain Michelle Stark had another consistent run when placing 42nd and the scoring team was completed by Helen Davies in 62nd spot.
The team’s development was highlighted by Anne-Marie Edwards and Chris Campbell who provided excellent back-up to the scoring trio by finishing in 69th and 79th places respectively.
Michelle Stark was pleased with her charges, saying “Given that we were missing a couple of runners due to unavoidable circumstances, seventh place shows that we are developing nicely. Individually, we’re getting better and as a team we are definitely on the up. I hope we can take this performance into the next Midland Women’s Cross-Country League race in two weeks’ time.”
Results: 1st Holly Rush (Team Bath); 2nd Gwen Kinsey (Stroud & Dist); 3rd Jane Wassell (Ciren).
Gloucester placings: 15th Kim Drinkwater; 42nd Michelle Stark; 62nd Helen Davies; 69th Anne-Marie Edwards; 79th Chris Collins.
Teams: 1st CLC Striders; 2nd Team Bath; 3rd Stroud & Dist; 7th Gloucester.
Gloucestershire Cross-Country League/Men (Cheltenham) - 20/11/2010
An improved turn-out saw Gloucester Athletic Club’s men, secure fifth place in the second Gloucestershire Cross-Country League race at Cheltenham.
With the next Birmingham Cross-Country League race only two weeks away, team captain Dave Gresswell had rallied around his troops in an attempt to get much-needed race practise and they responded well.
Saturday’s race saw a mighty tussle at the front of the field between Dave Roper of the host club and Dursley’s Garry Hughes with the former prevailing, but there was some tight competition behind them.
Leading the city team home again was Andy Renfree in 14th place. Currently producing some very solid, consistent performances he is shouldering the responsibility of leading the team out in the enforced absence of Steve Millward.
Next Gloucester runner home, in 25th position was Andrew de Camps, demonstrating that he is gradually regaining his form and fitness following an injury-ravaged summer.
Team captain Dave Gresswell was next man to finish in 36th position, followed in 53rd by Jeremy Mower. Wayne Mayer came home in 59th place and the evergreen Arthur Daley belied his years to complete the scoring six in 65th place.
Further evidence of the Gloucester athletes’ response to captain Gresswell’s call to race was provided with the ‘B’ team finishing in 4th place in their category.
Peter Lloyd led them home in 74th position with Alistair Wakefield next to finish in 94th place. Matt Powell was the next Gloucester man home (127th) followed by Dave Spackman (145th), Mark Thrall (159th) with Paul Loveridge completing the scoring in 167th place.
Dave Gresswell was much happier with the turn-out of his runners, saying “The Gloucestershire Cross-country League is the ideal preparation that our runners need for the stern challenge of the Birmingham League and we need to get as many of the guys racing as we can. Two tough races per month over the winter season are what we all need if we are to make an impact at this level. With one or two exceptions, they all turned out today, so I’m pretty happy.”
Results: 1st D Roper (Cheltenham & Co Harriers); 2nd G Hughes (Dursley); 3rd J Parker (CLC Striders).
Gloucester placings: 14th A Renfree; 25th A de Camps; 36th D Gresswell; 53rd J Mower; 59th W Mayer; 65th A Daley; 74th P Lloyd; 94th A Wakefield; 127th M Powell; 145th D Spackman; 159th M Thrall; 167th P Loveridge; (200 ran)
Teams: 1st Chelt & Co 68 pts; 2nd Clevedon 153; 3rd CLC Striders 209. 5th Glos 252.
Gloucestershire Cross-Country League/Young Athletes (Cheltenham) - 20/11/2010
Gloucester Athletic Club’s potential “stars of the future” were in action at the second Gloucestershire Cross-Country League fixture at Cheltenham on Saturday.
The first race of the day was the Under-11 girls event and saw Bryony Goddard-Jones leading the Gloucester youngsters home in eighth place in a very competitive race. Kezia Smith (13th), Hannah Meheran (19th), Charlotte Sprason (31st) and Charlie Friday (47th) brought the team home in fifth place.
The Under-11s boys race was dominated by runners from Team Bath who filled six of the top seven places. However, Gloucester’s Harry Wells did his best to break this stranglehold, coming home in an encouraging 10th position. Joshua Friday ran well to finish in 65th place.
The city club managed one representative in each of the Under-15 Girls, Under-15 Boys and Under-17 Ladies events, where Hannah Jones, Andrew Bowers and Becky Summers finished 15th, 18th and 7th respectively. Adam Thrall produced possibly the most encouraging performance of the city’s youngsters when taking third place in the Under-17s Men’s race.
Chocolate Biscuit 4-mile (Plock Court) - 13/11/2010
Despite undergoing surgery less than three months ago, Gloucester Athletic Club’s “super veteran” Dave Spackman is showing that his enthusiasm for the sport he has graced for 30 years burns as brightly now as it did when he first took up the sport.
His victory in the V65 category at Severn AC’s Chocolate Biscuit 4-mile cross-country event at Plock Court on Saturday came just one week after he took second place in that category at the Guy Fawkes 5-mile road race at Tewkesbury – a performance which, incidentally, clinched him 3rd place overall in this year’s County Road Race Series for the V65 age group.
Spackman took up running in 1981 when, along with a group of his team-mates at Spartans RFC in Gloucester, he started training for the city’s inaugural marathon that was taking place in the autumn of that year.
Spackman explains: “There was a special team prize for local rugby clubs in the marathon that year and as the running boom had really taken off, thanks to the London event, I managed to persuade a few of my colleagues to give it a go. Even if they weren’t going to actually run the marathon, it would have been good pre-season fitness training for them.”
History shows that Spackman led the victorious Spartans RFC team home that day in a very impressive debut time of 2 hours 49 minutes.
Spackman continues: “That one race signalled the end of my rugby days and the start of my running career because I was collared just after the race by the race organiser, Terry Haines, who advised me to take up running.”
Nearly thirty years later, “Spackie” is still a regular and very familiar face at most of the county’s road races and, though into his 66th year, is showing no signs of easing off.
“I’ll be running at the Gloucestershire Cross-Country League race at Pittville next Saturday (20th), followed by Severn’s Christmas cross-country handicap race in early December.”
Christmas Day celebrations with the family will be put on hold for a few hours because Dave shall be running in the annual Christmas Morning 3-miles road race and uphill sprint race. “It blows away the cobwebs from the night before and gives me a good appetite!”
Gloucester AC Win Top Honours In County Road Race Series - 07/11/2010
Gloucester AC have had a successful year in the 2010 Gloucestershire County Road Race Series which concluded at the Tewkesbury five mile race on Sunday.
The men’s veteran 40 team was crowned champions and the women won the open women’s section. The senior men’s team finished runners up to Bourton Road Runners by the narrowest of margins.
In the individual standings Michelle Stark rounded off her excellent year with a win in the lady vet 35 category. Christine Campbell was 2nd.
Jane Leckebusch was surprised and delighted to finish not only second lady vet 45 but also second in the ladies open competition.
Arthur Daley finished second in the Vet 60 catagory and Jeremy Mower secured third place overall in the veteran 40 age group.
Guy Fawkes 5 (Tewkesbury) - 07/11/2010
Gloucester Athletic Club athletes turned out in force for the Tewkesbury five mile road race on Sunday and put on a good display.
In favourable conditions, first home for the club was Andy Renfree in fifth place in 26:49 on his return to racing after a recent illness. Cross country captain Dave Gresswell was next to finish in 28:31 for 19th position, that was close to his PB and only three seconds slower than his best time on that course. Dave was closely followed by Simon Fortnam in 28:42 for 22nd place, his best race of an injury hit year and another step towards full fitness. Jeremy Mower completed the scoring A team in 35th place (30:14) after an injury break.
Peter Lloyd was 43rd in 30:47 and in 48th place Arthur Daley narrowly missed breaking his own Vet 60 club record by five seconds with 30:59. Veteran 65 Dave Spackman returned after injury to finish 104th (34:26) and Michelle Stark was the clubs first woman to finish in 117th in a new PB of 34:57. Michelle has enjoyed a great year setting new best times over 5k (road and track), five miles and 10km.
In 130th place Jane Leckebusch took 23 seconds off her PB with 35:39 and she was closely followed by Helen Davies in 137th who took four minutes off her time from last year with 35:54. Christine Campbell finished 189th in 38:18 missing her best time by just eight seconds.
5th Andy Renfree 26:49; 19th Dave Gresswell 28:31; 22nd Simon Fortnam 28:42; 35th Jeremy Mower 30:14; 43rd Peter Lloyd 30:47; 48th Arthur Daley 30:59; 104th Dave Spackman 34:26; 117th Michelle Stark 34:57; 130th Jane Leckebusch 35:39; 137th Helen Davies 35:54; 189th Christine Campbell 38:18. (366 finished)
GB selection for Gloucester athlete
Gloucester Athletic Club thrower, Beverley Jones, has been selected to represent Great Britain in the shot putt and discus at the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) world athletics championships in Christchurch, New Zealand in January.
Beverley has previously successfully combined sprinting with shot, winning category T37 100m & F37 shot gold medals on successive days at the 2005 European Champs, and a bronze medal for Wales in 100m EAD at 2006 Commonwealth Games in Melbourne. More recently, she has concentrated on throwing, winning Gold at the 2006 World Championships with a then world record 10.57m in the F37 category shot.
The championships run from 22nd – 30th January 2011 in the Queen Elizabeth II stadium, venue of the 1974 Commonwealth Games.
Birmingham & District Cross-Country League - 30/10/2010
Gloucester Athletic Club’s men’s team made its long-awaited return to the top Division of the Birmingham Cross-country League on Saturday and found the opposition as tough as the arduous Leamington Spa course.
Division One of this league is widely regarded as the toughest in the country and boasts among its members, two of Britain’s leading distance-running clubs - Birchfield Harriers and Tipton Harriers. Therefore, just to compete at this level is a remarkable achievement, let alone to actually challenge for top places.
Despite finishing last in the opening fixture, there were several typically gutsy performances from the city athletes.
Leading the way home for the first time was Richard De Camps, in 85th place. Starting off at a fast pace, he held his position well and his performance augers well for a solid winter season.
Next home for Gloucester was Dave Gresswell, in 126th. Gresswell also started well and although he started to feel the effects from last week’s Stroud Half Marathon during mid-race, he rallied well to claw back several places over the closing mile.
Just behind Gresswell, in 130th position, was Lee Smith who showed signs of returning to his outstanding road form of last year. A few more weeks of consistent, injury-free training should see him again challenge the club’s leading runners.
The elder brother, Andrew De Camps, was the next Gloucester runner home, in 133rd. Normally a track specialist over 800 metres, he adapted well to these less familiar conditions, despite visibly tiring over the closing stages.
Ultra-distance specialist, Jeremy Mower, showed good pace judgement and produced another solid run to place 152nd, whilst team vice-captain Ian Summers made up the scoring six for the A Team when finishing just behind Mower in 155th position.
The city club’s B team fared better in their category. Experienced campaigners Mark Ingram (170th) and V60 Arthur Daley (174th) led the team home, closely followed by Alistair Wakefield in 176th. Wakefield’s run was all the more remarkable considering he had run the Amsterdam marathon just seven days previously. The fact that he also travelled nearly 200 miles from his south-coast base to compete in Saturday’s race typified his commitment to the team.
Two club newcomers, Omar Alim and Matt Powell, both in their first ever appearances over the country, were next in and the team was completed by Matthew Aspinall, who finished in 191st place.
The Gloucester contingent was completed by non-scorers Gareth Malsom (209th), Paul Loveridge (214th), debutant Mike Anderton (226th) and Club chairman Andy McKenzie in 228th.
Afterwards, team captain Dave Gresswell said “This result proved conclusively that this is by far the highest level of cross-country competition that our athletes have ever raced in. The result is disappointing, but the effort was there and I know we will benefit from the experience. Every one of our runners has to be fit, healthy and available for each of the remaining three matches if we are to have a chance of survival, but it is a very tall order.”
A teams: Birmingham Uni 86 pts; Birchfield H 115; Coventry 118; Tipton H 179; Loughborough Students 268; BRAT Club 366; Cheltenham & Co 417; OWLS 422; City of Stoke 428; Halesowen 437; Staffs Moorlands 457; Warwick Uni 514; Kenilworth 556; Telford 558; Rugby & Northampton 658; Gloucester AC 781.
B teams: Birmingham Uni 173 pts; Coventry 343; Loughborough Students 450; Tipton H 829; Halesowen 857; Warwick Uni 922; BRAT Club 932; Kenilworth 993; Gloucester AC 1083.
Midland Women’s Cross-Country League - 30/10/2010
Gloucester Athletic Club’s ladies team travelled to Leamington Spa to compete in the opening match of this winter’s Midland Women’s Cross-Country League.
Thanks to the encouragement of their captain, Michelle Stark, the team has gradually increased its commitment to this league and are currently the only county team competing at this level.
On Saturday, five city ladies toed the line and Gemma Collier was the first to show. Currently in a rich vein of form over a wide range of distances and surfaces, Collier found the hilly Leamington course to her liking as she led the team home.
The next runner home was Melissa Whitlock, making a welcome return to racing. Finishing strongly, she looks to be recovering well from the injuries that disrupted her summer’s racing and training programme.
Michelle Stark completed the scoring three, showing few ill effects from having competed in a half marathon and 5km road race in the week leading up to this event.
Anne-Marie Edwards and club debutant Vanessa Anderton provided solid support by completing the course.
Team captain Stark was satisfied with the team’s showing, saying “This is a good platform to build on. We are keen to make our mark in this league, not necessarily in terms of high-end team placings, but in numbers. We want to get as many city ladies racing in these events as we can so that we can really make our presence felt.”
Overall positions: 59th Gemma Collier; 99th Melissa Whitlock; 146th Michelle Stark; 170th Anne-Marie Edwards; 265th Vanessa Anderton
Snowdonia Marathon - 30/10/2010
Gloucester Athletic Club’s Wayne Mayer finished an impressive 12th in the M40 category and 34th overall of 1299 runners at this year’s running of the Snowdonia Marathon.
Encircling Mount Snowdon, the event is considered by many as being among the toughest road marathons in Europe, as runners have the steep inclines as well as inclement autumnal weather and local wildlife to contend with.
Mayer’s time of 3hr 8min 27sec was a personal best for the course by over nine minutes. His Gloucester club-mate Philip Du Plessis placed 140th in the M40 category in a time of 4hr 30min 50sec.
Stroud Half Marathon - 24/10/2010
Gloucester AC members were in attendance to compete in the biggest mass-participation race in the Gloucestershire road race calendar, the Stroud Half Marathon, on Sunday.
This year’s event, the 29th, was run in cold but sunny, dry and near-windless conditions and saw a mix of established and new club members competing, along with a rare appearance by club stalwart Mike Storey, who dusted off his somewhat moth-eaten club vest to take part.
From the gun, club cross-country captain Dave Gresswell, was the first of the Gloucester contingent to show, establishing an early lead over his fellow club members that he was never to surrender. Clocking 59 minutes for the opening 10 miles, Gresswell tired slightly over the closing miles, but still recorded a personal best for the Stroud course of 1hr 18min 30sec for 37th place overall.
Next home for Gloucester was ultra-distance specialist Jeremy Mower, who showed he is on the way back from injury, producing a solid performance and finishing in 1hr 23min 23sec for 76th place.
Peter Lloyd was just outside the top 100, finishing in 1hr 25min 14sec, and he was followed home by Omar Alim. Alim, a new club recruit and a regular attendee at the club’s growing distance running group, finished in 1hr 31min 5sec. This was a personal best, taking a full eight minutes off his previous best time.
First lady home for the club was Hayley Winters, whose time of 1hr 34min was good enough for 276th place. Winters now plans to work abroad for 6 months in a ski resort, where she will have the chance for some high altitude training before next year’s road racing season.
Vet 55 Terry Onions was in attendance as ever, with a clocking of 1hr 36mins for 365th place overall.
Michelle Stark (LV35) was just one minute outside her personal best, benefiting from solid support from her coach, and vet 60 athlete, Arthur Daley, who accompanied her during the race.
Gareth Malsom, and new club member Alex Toseland, were only separated by 30 seconds as they both came home just outside the top 400 finishers.
Another Lady Vet 35, Christine Campbell, continued her steady improvement producing a PB of 1hr 46min 48sec.
Completing the list of Gloucester club finishers in 2 hrs 19 mins was Mike Storey. Nowadays, Storey can be more often found actively occupied as a Course Director in local road races but still finds time to pull on the old shoes for these races.
National Road Relays (Sutton Park) - 16/10/2010
Gloucester AC fielded both men’s and women’s teams in the National Road Relay Championships at Sutton Park on Saturday.
The men’s team finished a creditable 72nd and third county team behind Cheltenham and Cirencester AC over the 6 x 6km lap. The competitive first leg was run by Andy Renfree (19.20) who improved his Midlands relay time by seven seconds to hand over in 63rd place. Richard De-Camps ran a strong second leg (19.46) to finish in 67th, an improvement of 39 seconds on his Midlands time. Dave Gresswell (21.12) responded well to his late call up to the team to pass on in 70th after bettering his outing last month by seven seconds. On leg four, team manager Simon Fortnam continued his return to racing fitness after injury by taking 30 seconds off his time with 20.57. Lee Smith (21.03) took over in 73rd and held that position before Pete Kellie (21.33) brought the team home, gaining one place on the way.
The women’s team finished a fine 57th in the 4 x 4.3km race with some good performances. The team was led off by Michelle Stark (17.57) who handed over in 66th. Helen Davies (19.23) took 24 seconds off her time from the Midlands relays and handed over to Anne-Marie Edwards (19.41) in 67th. Edwards held 67th and took seven seconds off her time from last month. The final storming leg was run by Gemma Collier (16.54) who gained 10 positions and improved her time by 10 seconds.
Women: 57th Gloucester AC 1:13.55
Michelle Stark - 17:57; Helen Davies - 19:23; Anne Marie Edwards - 19:41; Gemma Collier - 16:54
Men: 72nd Gloucester AC 2:03.51
Andy Renfree - 19:20; Richard De-Camps - 19:46; Dave Gresswell - 21.12; Simon Fortnam - 20:57; Lee Smith - 21:03; Pete Kellie - 21:33.
Gloucestershire XC League - Fixture 1 (Bourton) - 09/10/2010
With several key senior mens and ladies athletes missing due to injury or other commitments, Gloucester AC got off to a steady start last weekend at the first of the Gloucestershire League Cross County fixtures at Bourton.
In the Senior Ladies race, Gemma Collier transferred her recent run of form on the roads onto the country with a fantastic 6th place overall. Collier positioned herself within the first ten places right from the start and moved easily through the field as others around her tired. Ladies XC Captain, Michelle Stark finished 32nd despite suffering with a cold all week, and only deciding to run minutes before the start. Anne-Marie Edwards was 52nd a solid run after spending most of the summer focusing on triathlons. Helen Davies had a great run for 62nd overall. Christine Campbell also ran, but missed out on the scoring team this time. This leaves the Senior Ladies team 9th overall after one race.
With the senior mens team missing at least five of its top runners, it was left to XC Captain, Dave Gresswell to lead the team home in 28th place. Running most of the race alongside club mate Tom Randles, Gresswell managed to pull clear and move up several places over the final lap of three. Randles finished second scorer in 37th. V50 athlete Tom Meheran was third to score with a fantastic run to finish 46th overall. Mark Ingram was not far behind in 50th place, and continues to improve race by race. 54th was Jeremy Mower. A good effort on the back of very limited training over the last couple of months due to injury. Completing the scoring ‘A’ team was Peter Lloyd in 64th.
This gave the ‘A’ team a top five finish overall, which was an excellent result given that key personnel were missing.
Club vice-captain and coach, Ian ‘Lofty’ Summers was just behind in 65th place leading home the ‘B’ team. A steady run, from another athlete who has been suffering with illness before the race. V60 Arthur Daley, on his birthday weekend, was 86th. Dave ‘Ed’ Edwards was 111th, Mark Thrall at 133rd , Gareth Malsom was 137th and Paul Loveridge 151st to round out the ‘B’ team. V60 runner John McClean was not far behind the ‘B’ team in 152nd.
With several of the ‘A’ team runners being V40 or above, these positions were also good enough to give the team 4th place overall in the Masters category.
In the U17 races the competition was close at the top with only a minute separating the top few places. Adam Thrall was 3rd in the U17 Boys race, less than 30 seconds off the lead runner, with Becky Summers 9th in U17 Girls.
Gloucestershire XC Relays (Plock Court) - 02/10/2010
Gloucester AC's older runners picked up honours at the County Cross Country Relay Championships.
Over 50 Tom Meheran brought the M40 team home on the first 1.9 mile leg in 11:27 for 11th place overall. Ultra-distance specialist Jeremy Mower improved the team's position by one with a leg of 11:17 whilst Cross Country Captain Dave Gresswell improved by another one place - overtaking Severn AC's M40 team with his second leg of the day in 11:39. V60 Arthur Daley also ran two legs and completed his second in 12:14 bring the team home in 11th place to claim the County M40 silver.
Gresswell had raced in the Senior Men's team taking the first leg in 10:56, a time which gained him the fastest M40 award. Gresswell passed over to Steve Millward in 4th place. Millward, running during a late lunch break from his Gloucester Sports shop, scooted around the flat course in 9:25, the fastest time of the day by a Gloucester based runner. Mark Ingram moved the team back to 5th place with 11:21. U17 Jack Evans ran the last leg for the Senior men returning a time of 11:21 which was comparable with his older team mates.
The V60 team lead off by Arthur Daley completed the first leg in 12:00 for 17th position. John McClean ran 13:45 for the middle leg whist a recovering V65 Dave Spackman ran the fastest time for his age group with 13:35 and brought the team home for gold medal.
Gloucester's only lady Becky Summers ran in a team with friends from Bourton and recorded 13:02.
Cirencester 10k - 26/09/2010
Jane Leckebusch produced the standout performance from a Gloucester AC athlete at the Cirencester 10k on Sunday, claiming victory in the highly competitive lady over 45 category. Despite preferring longer distance races, Leckebusch ran well to finish in a time of 45.05 minutes.
Also claiming age group honours were Peter Lloyd who took silver in the veteran over 45 category with 38.47 minutes, which was good enough for 29th place overall from a field of more than 600 runners. The effervescent Arthur Daley was narrowly beaten into second place in the over 60 category, despite running a superb time of 40.23 minutes. Dave Gresswell was third in the over 40 section with 36.56 minutes and 14th place overall.
Michelle Stark celebrated her birthday in style by producing a new personal best time of 43.09 minutes for 92nd place overall, while Dave Spackman finished in 206th place with 48.34 minutes and Chris Campbell claimed 228th with a time of 49.27 minutes
Midlands Road Relays (Birmingham) - 25/09/2010
Gloucester AC's mens and womens teams put in strong performances at the Midlands road relays on Saturday, held on the familiar course in Sutton Park, Birmingham. They were the only club from the city to qualify teams for either men or women to the National finals to be held at the same venue in 3 weeks time.
Irish international Rose-Anne Galligan led off on the first stage for Gloucester and produced a superb run to bring the team back in 2nd place overall from an entry of more than 70 teams, just behind eventual winners Charnwood AC. Galligan’s time of 14.58 minutes proved to be the 4th fastest time of the whole day and shows that she has maintained her superb track form through to the autumn. On the difficult second leg was Chris Campbell who ran well to finish in 20.19 minutes, before handing over to Anne-Marie Edwards who was pleased to finish in 19.47 minutes despite training primarily for triathlon this summer. Gemma Collier stormed around the final stage for Gloucester, gaining 12 places to bring the team back in 24th place with a time of 17.04 minutes, which was over a minute quicker than last year. Despite missing several key athletes, this was a superb performance from the Gloucester ladies team and the strength in depth was illustrated by an excellent run fromHelen Davies who ran a solo effort for the incomplete B team, finishing in 19.47 minutes.
In the mens 6 stage relay, with 6 'legs' of approximately 5.9km each, Gloucester moved through the field well to claim 18th place overall, one place better than last year. After falling behind city rivals Severn AC on the initial opening stage through Tom Randles in 20.20 minutes for 45th place, Luke Herbert moved Gloucester past their neighbours with a time of 20.11 minutes which was good enough to gain 13 places for the team. Steve Millward then continued the forwards progression with a move of a further 12 places to bring the team to halfway in 20th spot, with a time of 18.44 minutes which was one of the quickest runs of the stage. Andrew Renfree moved the team further ahead of both Cheltenham and Severn and up to 16th place with a time of 19.27 minutes, which was slightly quicker than his time from last year. After a severe delay in getting to the race venue, Nico Constanti performed well considering the unhelpful pre-race preparation to keep Gloucester in a contention with a time of 20.55 minutes, almost half a minute quicker than last year. Richard de Camps completed proceedings for the talented Gloucester squad by running 20.25 minutes for the final stage, again a good time considering his delay in getting to the race.
Emphasising Gloucester’s strength in depth despite missing a full team of athletes, the B team also performed well to claim 58th place from an entry of more than 105 teams. Dave Gresswell started things off well with a time of 21.19 minutes for 61st place, followed by new mens team captain Simon Fortnam who showed signs of a return to form with 21.27 minutes for the second stage. The dependable Mark Ingram ran well for 22.31 minutes on stage 3, before Omar Alim made a welcome debut for the club on stage 4 with a time of 24.10 minutes which kept the club in 62nd spot. Veteran Arthur Daley ran strongly for 23.44 minutes on stage 5 before the team performance was completed by Andrew de Camps who looked comfortable in clocking 21.50 minutes to bring the team home in 58th place.
Woodchester Park 8 (Stroud) - 12/09/2010
Gloucester AC's Lee Smith was a delighted winner of the mens over 40 title at the Woodchester Park 8 mile multi-terrain race held in Stroud on Sunday. Currently in hard training for the forthcoming UK Coastal Series in which he finished third overall last year, Smith produced a superb run over the challenging terrain to finish third overall in a time of 52.33 minutes, good enough for the age group win. Club cross-country captain Dave Gresswell was next home for the club in 9th place overall, with a time of 55.39 minutes as he tries to get over a chest infection. Ian Summers was pleased with 13th place overall and a time of 56.37 minutes, just ahead of veteran over 45 Peter Lloyd who claimed 16th place and a time of 57.12 minutes.
Gemma Collier continued her excellent recent form with 2nd place in the ladies race behind seasoned athlete Ann Nixon, sneaking into the top 20 overall from a field of more than 150 runners with a time of 57.45 minutes. Terry Onions completed a good day for Gloucester with 65th place in a time of 67.46 minutes.
Harewood Hurtle 6 (Hereford) - 12/09/2010
Gloucester AC claimed a double victory in the Harewood Hurtle 6 mile multi-terrain race in Hereford on Sunday, with Steve Millward winning the mens race and Kim Drinkwater winning the womens race. Racing over private land owned by the Duchy of Cornwall, Millward was content to run with Matt James of host club Hereford Couriers AC for the first half before stretching away over one of the long climbs to win by more than two minutes in a time of 36.11 minutes. Drinkwater was involved in a much closer tussle in the womens race but came out on top in the final mile to claim victory and 6th place overall in a time of 44.05 minutes, which bodes well for a strong cross-country season.
London to Brighton Trail Race - 05/09/2010
Gloucester AC's Wayne Mayer had a good debut in his first ultra race at the London to Brighton Trail Race of 57 miles which involved some navigation in this off road event.
It was a tough run with 9000 feet of climbing over the 57 miles. Mayer was unfamiliar with the route being a rookie at this event so he teamed up with someone who knew where he was going and stuck with him. They were 3rd and 4th with ten miles to go and then the runner that Mayer was with, started to cramp up. They had to slow down, and Mayer stuck with him as they had been working together. Two runners then passed them in the final few miles and Mayer eventually finished a very respectable 6th place in 9 hours 32 min. Mayer hopes to give it another go next year and improve on his performance now he knows the route.
Mayer has been doing long runs with Gloucester's Welsh international ultra runner Jeremy Mower who will be taking on his second 24 hour Track Race at Tooting Bec, London on 25th September. Mower hopes to break 200km for the first time and boost his selection chances for the Commonwealth Championships in 2011. Mower said "Wayne has been very strong in training and some days I'm the one struggling to keep up with him especially over hilly terrain and it was very honourable of him to stay with the runner he was with as it probably cost him 3rd place."
Bristol Half Marathon - 05/09/2010
A small but select contingent of Gloucester AC athletes made the trip down to Bristol for the half marathon, producing some good results. Taking the honours was Alistair Wakefield who finished 295th from a field of more than 15000 runners, with a solid time of 1 hour 26:18. Chris Campbell was delighted to revise her personal best by over a minute with a time of 1 hour 47:05 minutes, while Rachael Hancocks also ran well to finish in a time of 2 hours 07:08.
Beacon 10k - 05/09/2010
Gloucester AC were well represented at the Beacon 10k on Sunday, organised by Angels Running Club, with all our athletes finishing in the top half of the field. Dave Gresswell was first home for Gloucester in 4th place overall with a time of 37.08 minutes, followed home in 5th place by ultra-runner Jeremy Mower, who is preparing for a 24-hour race in a few weeks time, in a time of 38.39 minutes. Arthur Daley was 22nd overall and just pipped for victory in the mens over 60 category, finishing in a time of 42.04 minutes. Michelle Stark continued her fine summer season with 39th place and 2nd lady over 35 with 44.06 minutes, narrowly beating club-mate Hayley Winters who claimed 48th place and a time of 45.19 minutes. Paul Loveridge completed a good day for the club with 51st place and a time of 46.12 minutes.
Galway City Half Marathon (Ireland) - 29/08/2010
Gloucester AC's Gemma Collier was an ecstatic winner of the Galway City Half Marathon in Ireland on Sunday, taking over 7 minutes off her previous best time. Collier, who has been in superb form recently over an eclectic range of race distances, finished 20th overall and first female from a field of more than 500 runners to take the first prize and winners cheque in her biggest race victory yet. Collier won in a time of 1hr 27min 20sec.
Dave Gresswell was the only other Gloucester AC athlete to compete over in Ireland and also ran well to claim eighth place overall with a time of 1hr 19min 56 sec, dipping just under the 80 minute barrier.
County Championships Part3 (Cheltenham) - 25/08/2010
Gloucester AC's u15 girls 4x100m relay squad took a convincing gold medal at the county track relay champs held at the Prince of Wales Stadium in Cheltenham. The combination of Harriet Hunter, Lurenda Mudd, Kelly Constable and Kate Davies won in a time of 53.3 seconds, which was quicker than several senior mens teams competing in the next race.
Jeremy Mower took 8th place overall in the county 10,000m race, but was pleased to claim bronze in the mens over 40 category with a time of 37.23 minutes on a wet and windy evening. In the mile races held at the same meeting, Dave Gresswell ran well to finish first over 40 man with 5.10.5 minutes, with Paul Loveridge claiming first over 50 with 6.02.9 minutes. British Masters 5k bronze medallist in the 5000m Michelle Stark, stepped down in distance and was first female 0ver 35 with 6.06.3 minutes, followed home by Chris Campbell in 6.53.2 minutes.
BMC Gold Standard Track Meeting (Stretford, Manchester) - 24/08/2010
Gloucester AC's Andrew de Camps broke through the 1.52 minute barrier for the first time with a superbly-paced race at a BMC track meeting in Manchester, to become the fastest athlete over 800m in the county this year with 1:51.89 minutes. De Camps ran an excellent tactical race sitting last but one from the break until 150 to go, having hit his check times at 400 and 600 spot on. He then closed on the field and came from virtually last to first in the last 80m. Father and coach Paul de Camps said afterwards "I think we are at least getting a glimpse of what might have been had he remained injury free as he still cannot train properly as he is not pain free. Plan is to have his last race of the season at Cardiff on Saturday in BMC GP final and then have rest and get the injury sorted."
Barbury Castle 5mile - 19/08/2010
Gloucester AC's Gemma Collier produced yet another superb run to claim victory at the Barbury Castle Track n Trail 5 mile race on Thursday, following on from her recent success in local road and trail races. Collier was in second place as the field ascended the tough hill in the first mile but moved into the lead and pulled away over the final stages to win convincingly in a time of 33.19 minutes. Providing excellent back-up to take the team prize were Becky Summers and Michelle Stark who combined to comfortably win the ladies team title. Summers was fifth lady overall and first junior female and Stark was ninth lady in a time of 39.51 minutes.
On the mens side, Gloucester were unlucky to miss out on the team prize by just one point from Newbury AC. Leading the way was Luke Herbert in a fine second place with a time of 29.28 minutes, proving that he is coming back into form just in time for the cross-country season. Dave Gresswell was 12th home in a time of 31.47 minutes and the team was completed by Ian Summers who finished 18th with a time of 32.12 minutes. Mark Ingram also ran well after missing training in recent weeks, claiming 36th place from a field of 123 finishers with a time of 35.25 minutes.
White Horse 5k - 19/08/2010
The final Severn AC 5k race of this year saw most of the Gloucester AC athletes setting best times. Andrew Renfree finished 7th with 15:48 in a high standard race, his fastest 5k time since 2004. Next to finish in 54th was V60 Arthur Daley running his second fastest 5k of the season in 19:06 and taking the County AAA Championship in his category. Paul Loveridge improved to a season's best for 84th position with 21:17 and Phil Duplessis took over 20 seconds for another season's best with 22:24 in 96th.
The two ladies from Gloucester AC were both making their first attempt at this distance. Middle distance specialist Sam Roberts finished 77th in 20:20 gaining Bronze in the U17 County Championships whilst Hayley Winters used the opportunity to set a new best whilst developing speed for her first marathon to complete the 5k in 85th place with 21:21
Standish Woodland 10 mile - 15/08/2010
Gloucester AC's Lee Smith was delighted to take second place at the Standish Woodland 10 mile multi-terrain race on Sunday, from a field of more than 150 runners. Smith was the first male to cross the finish line in a time of 61.56 minutes, but had to concede to GB international athlete Kate Goodhead from Bristol and West AC for the overall victory. Taking second in the ladies race and a fine 18th overall was the in-form Gemma Collier in a time of 68.06 minutes. Collier, who has won several recent events, continued her superb recent form which bodes well for county honours over the winter season.
Castle Combe 10k - 15/08/2010
Dave Gresswell was pleased with a solid ninth place at a sunny Castle Combe 10km in Wiltshire on Sunday, finishing the course in a time of 36.18 minutes to take second in the veteran over 40 category. Gresswell, who is the Gloucester AC cross-country captain, showed that he is coming into form at the right time as the build-up to the winter season begins in earnest
Wrexham Games - 14/08/2010
Newcomer Lucy Humphreys competed at the Wrexham Games on Saturday 14th August and had a busy afternoon in the throws events. Competing in the under 15 girls category, she finished 4th in both the shot and Discus and was disappointed in her performance, but made amends with a Silver medal in the Hammer with her first throw of 18.98m. Her last was over 20m but just landed out. This was a great achievement for Humphreys in her first ever hammer competition, considering she had only started to learn to throw the hammer the Thursday before at training.
Cranham Boundary Chase - 07/08/2010
Gloucester AC's Steve Millward was a relieved winner of the 59th edition of the Cranham Boundary Chase, after defending his title from last year despite only arriving 5 minutes before the start of the race. After working all day at his shop Gloucester Sports, Millward made a last-minute decision to race and arrived on the start line just before the gun went to begin the race. After swapping the lead with Mike Smith of Bourton Road Runners throughout the race, Millward powered up the final hill up onto the common to eke out a 30 second gap over Smith to regain the trophy he won last year with a time of 32.36 minutes. Providing superb backup to ensure that Gloucester AC won the team title for the second successive year, 2007 winner Tom Randles took fourth place with 34.25 minutes and Dave Gresswell was fifth and second veteran over 40 with 35.20 minutes.
Emphasising Gloucester AC's current strength in depth, Lee Smith was sixth with 35.38 minutes, Ian Summers was 11th in 37.54 minutes and newcomer Dave Lucas made a promising debut in 38.57 minutes for 15th place. Kim Drinkwater, who also made a last-minute decision to compete, was pleased to finish in 20th place overall and second lady back, in a time of 40.31 minutes which would have been good enough to win the ladies event last year. Omar Alim produced a strong run to claim 22nd place before jetting off to Spain on holiday, completing the 5.8 mile course in 40.46 minutes. Jason Gresswell ran well for 27th place and a time of 42.41 minutes, while British Masters track 5km medallist Michelle Stark moved onto the roads with consummate ease to claim 37th place and a time of 46.59 minutes. Completing a hugely successful evening for the host club was Christine Campbell, fresh from a 49.32 minute 10km at Bugatti the previous Wednesday, finishing 43rd on this occasion with a time of 49.08 minutes.
Midlands Track and Field League (Tipton) - 01/07/2010
Gloucester AC's composite track and field team narrowly missed out on promotion to division one of the Midlands Track and Field League at the weekend, despite a strong performance in the final fixture at Tipton. An improved womens team made up for a lack of numbers with some sterling results to finish fourth on the day, which combined with a fourth successive win for the mens team to claim second overall on the day and third for the season, narrowly missing out on promotion.
Sisters Sophie Lambert and Cleo Lambert produced some encouraging sprint performances to take several second and third places in the 100m, 200m and 100m hurdles between them. Kathryn Purcell took a third in the 400m hurdles B string and fourth in both the long and triple jump, while sister Alex Purcell claimed fifth and fourth in the same horizontal jumps. Youngster Becky Summers had a busy afternoon with fifth in the 400m and 800m and third in the 400m hurdles. Gemma Collier also performed well in the 800m, 1500m and 3000m with a useful haul of points. Anna Robertson claimed victory in the womens hammer and was backed up in the other throws by Kate Yhnell, Beverley Jones and Marion Loveridge who all scored well. Highlight of the afternoon for the womens team was a superb 4x100m relay team made up of the Lambert and Purcell sisters who produced some slick baton changeovers to storm to second place.
On the mens side, there were several wins for the Gloucester and Severn team, led by Gareth Winter with victory in both the mens shot and discus who finishes the season unbeaten in those events in Midlands League competition. Also unbeaten for the league season are Andrew de Camps and Nico Constanti in the 800m and Steve Millward in the steeplechase, just missing out on the league record in that event. On his return from injury, Ryan Preddy was in great form in the 100m and 200m with a pair of second places before producing a sensational 400m relay leg, moving the team through from 6th to 2nd in just 48.9 seconds. Team stalwart Brendan Goss had a busy afternoon with third in the 110m hurdles, victory in his preferred triple jump, third in the pole vault and fourth in both the high and long jump. Also weighing in with a healthy amount of points was the unsung hero Lloyd Andrews, who won the long jump B string, before taking third in the triple jump and a pair of fourth places in both hurdles events.
Wayne Powell won the hammer event and was backed up by Tim Williams who won the B string, while senior league debutant Tim Campion won the B string discus and took fourth in the shot putt.
Team managers Richard Blackwell and Jeremy Mower were pleased with a strong finish to the season and with reinforcements to cover a slight lack of strength in depth, are hopeful that next season will see Gloucester and Severn finally make the step up to the top division of Midlands athletics.
Gloucester Half Marathon
Gloucester AC's Tom Randles was the best placed local athlete at the Gloucester Half Marathon held on Saturday at Newent, which resulted in the organising club also winning the mens team title. Randles, who is in great from at the moment, was always to the fore in the race and was pleased to finish 5th overall in a time of 77:05 minutes, despite the undulating course and humid conditions. New recruit Tony Marshall made his debut for the club and ran well to be the leading male over 45 in 10th spot overall from a field of more than 250 runners, with a time of 81:50 minutes. Club stalwart Jeremy Mower was next home for the club in 11th overall with a time of 1 hour 22.32 minutes to wrap up the team title.
Jane Leckebusch won a close battle with Hayley Winters for the honour of being the first Glos AC lady home, finishing in 73rd and 74th places respectively, with times of 99:02 for Leckebusch which was narrowly outside her pb, and 99:43 for Winters. Also making her debut for Gloucester was Ruth Hill, who is currently preparing for a marathon in Ireland in 6 weeks time, and ran well throughout to finish 191st with a time of 2 hours 10:21 minutes.
The race was well organised by Gloucester AC although the club was slightly disappointed that more runners didn't make the most of an evening race which also has a plentiful goody bag for all finishers. Gloucester AC will also be organising the 59th edition of the Cranham Boundary Chase 5.8 mile road race on Saturday 7th August. The race starts at 6pm on Cranham Common with two large hills to negotiate on the run and a fayre and hog roast for all runners afterwards.
Cheltenham Midsummer Open
Former GB athlete Ryan Preddy made a welcome return to form at the third Cheltenham AC Midsummer Open, with a superb victory in the 150m. On his return from a long injury lay-off, Preddy effortlessly moved away from a strong field to take victory in 16.8 seconds which is one of the quickest times in the UK this year. This followed on from a succession of victories for Gloucester AC athletes, with Lurenda Mudd winning the U15 girls 150m and 300m with 19.9 seconds and 43.0 seconds respectively. Laurence Leat won the U13 boys 150m in 18.6 seconds and Andrew de Camps won the senior mens 400m with an encouraging 50.6 seconds, one of his fastest ever runs.
Gloucester AC's hammer throwers dominated the competition as expected, with Wayne Powell winning the senior mens competition with 54.83 metres and Kate Yhnell winning the womens competition with 47.77 metres. These two were backed up by Beth Sewell in 2nd with 43.17m and Anna Robertson in 3rd with 41.08 metres. In the younger age groups, Charlotte Stallard won the u15 girls category with 36.95m and newcomer Joshua Pilipczuk won the u13 boys event with 16.74 metres.
Kate Davies continued her good recent form with 2nd place in the under 15 girls high jump with 1.35 metres.
Bourton One Mile Road Race
Gloucester AC’s Irish International Rose-Anne Galligan narrowly missed a £500 prize for beating 4 minutes 30 over Bourton Road Runners One Mile Road Race course as she stormed in to win the women’s race in 4:37 in 5th place overall.
Tom Randles battled with an improving Luke Herbert throughout the race, with Randles showing the greater speed as they finished 10th and 11th in 4:49 and 4:51.
Jeremy Mower and Lee Smith shared the same time of 5:05 with Mower taking Smith over the last 100yds for Silver and Bronze in the County AAA Championships (18th and 19th). Gemma Collier continued her outstanding series of races taking 34secs off her PB for the mile finishing County Champion in 5:24 (as Galligan is not eligible for County races) and was closely followed by Becky Summers who gained the U20 title in 5:33.
Jason Greswell, wishing he had spent more time on speed work, concentrated on maintaining form to run 5:42 for 38th place whilst Michelle Stark, in her third competitive event over 3 days, was bitterly disappointed to miss out on equalling her club W35 record by 1 sec but was compensated by gaining Bronze in the W35- 44 category as first W35. Arthur Daley running less confidently than in June because of an Achilles tendon injury was beaten in a sprint finish by Stark for 6:10 to Stark’s 6:09 and compensated by the County Silver.
Christine Campbell finished in 6:46 for PB and Jane Leckebusch ran quickly over the first half mile to complete the course in 6:52
White Horse 5k
Tom Randles proved the strongest Gloucester AC athlete in the White Horse 5k road race held in windy and wet conditions finishing 8th in 16:48, only 5 secs in front of 10th placed Luke Herbert who is beginning a return to form. Under 17 Adam Thrall finished 3rd in his age group in 16:53, one place behind Herbert. Mark Thrall was next home for the club in 38th place with 20:25. An ecstatic Michelle Stark closed in 45th place to record a 16sec improvement in her road PB despite the adverse conditions and was followed by V50 Paul Loveridge who recorded 21:22 making 20 sec improvement on this course.
Cheltenham Harriers Midsummer Open
Gloucester AC's Andrew de Camps ran a scintillating 600m at Cheltenham last Wednesday at the Cheltenham Harriers Midsummer Open, to continue his comeback from injury. De Camps followed the fast early pace of Luke Carroll and unleashed a strong kick for home, finishing first in 1:19.9s which is a new personal best by 3 secs. The time broke the longstanding senior mens club record belonging to Richard Blackwell from 1986 and also puts de Camps top of the UK rankings for 2010.
Not to be outdone, Tim Campion also broke a longstanding club record in the under 17 mens discus, with a superb throw of 41.72m. Campion, who was disappointed with a below-par showing at the English Schools Champs, beat the previous record which had stood for more than 35 years by over half a metre. For good measure, Campion also won the shot as well with 10.85m. In the under 15 girls Javelin, the promising Kate Davies won with a distance of 25.79 metres, before also performing well in the 100m. The only other Gloucester AC athlete to compete was Oliver Clarke in the under 15 boys 100m and he made it 4 wins out of 4 for the club with victory in a time of 12.4 seconds.
Gloucester Athletic Club's three entrants in the Frampton 10k finished satisfied with their performances, with Alistair Wakefield finishing 31st in a time over a minute faster than last year of 38:16. Christine Campbell completed the course in 187th out of the 454 finishers and Josie Thomas made a rare appearance on the road just beating the hour with 59:25 for 375th position.
Gloucestershire AAA 10 mile Road Race Championships (Hardwicke)
Gloucester AC Women had the most successful 10 mile County Championship race at Hardwicke. They convincingly took the team title with Kim Drinkwater leading them home in 71:38 placing 15th out of over 40 starters. As first senior women Kim also gained the County AAA 10 mile Championship title. Five places behind, Jane Leckebusch finished 2nd woman to take the W45 title with a new personal best time by more than a minute. Michelle Stark, aiming mainly for points in the County Road Race Series, achieved her aim of maximum points whilst gaining the W35 title with 29th place in 81;35. Christine Campbell completed the Championship collection by coming in 41st in 89:16 to win the W35 bronze.
The older men were also successful; Arthur Daley also aiming at maximum points in the County Road Race Series ran his first 10 mile race since the late 1980's to finish 16th, 12 seconds behind Drinkwater, and winning the County M60 title. Dave Spackman, recovering from injury, finished in 27th place(80:07) to gain gold in the M65 group.
For the younger men it was a constant club competition: coaches Dave Gresswell and Jeremy Mower showed doggedness in their battle over the undulating course with Gresswell triumphing over Mower to finish 6th, 8 seconds ahead of Mower's 64:45. Jason Gresswell ran 84:38 for 33rd place narrowly beating Phil Duplessis who finished one place behind in 84:56.
British Masters Championships (Cardiff)
Gloucester AC's Michelle Stark exceeded everybody's expectations in her first 5000m track race. Racing in her first Veterans Track Championship at Cardiff, Michelle ran a superbly paced race with the first 1200m just below her target pace, the middle third spot-on and, with an increase in pace over the last 4 laps to bring her home in the Bronze place of V35 category in a time of 20.49 minutes. This was 28 seconds faster than her road 5k personal best and over 2 minutes faster than her first 5k of the year only 2 months ago.
Arthur Daley competed in the V60 group and showed more even pacing than he usually does but despite this, missed his target time of 19:00 to gain 7th place in the V60 final with 19.11 minutes.
Marion Loveridge also came away with a bronze medal at the championships, claiming a medal in the womens over 45 hammer event. Loveridge was satisfied with a medal but slightly disappointed with the distance of 32.25 metres.
Midlands Track and Field League (Rugby)
Becky Summers might have been the youngest member of the Gloucester AC team at the Midlands League fixture at Rugby on Saturday, but she produced the standout performance of the day in shattering the club u17 womens 400m hurdles record. 15 year old Summers ran 71.2 seconds to take more than a second off the previous club best, before claiming 2nd place in the 3000m a few hours later.
Despite a severely depleted team, the composite Gloucester and Severn team performed admirably to claim third place on the day which leaves them mid-table with only one fixture remaining. The mens team again dominated the opposition to win their category comfortably, thanks to several club stalwarts who competed in numerous events to good effect. Justin Sysum won his hammer competition convincingly before also winning the B string shot and discus, while Gareth Winter won the A string shot and discus and also the B string javelin. Brendan Goss won the triple jump which is his preferred event, before filling his afternoon with third in the long jump and a couple of fourth places in the 110m hurdles and the pole vault. Lloyd Andrews also had a busy afternoon with two second places, two third places, a fourth and a sixth in a variety of events.
Tim Dalton continued his excellent recent form with commanding wins in both the 800m and 1500m, with a time of 3:51.6 minutes which would grace the highest leagues in the UK. Steve Millward broke his own Midlands League record in the 2km steeplechase with a time that ranks him 6th in the UK before taking second in the 400m hurdles and third in the B string 1500m. Andrew de Camps won the B string 400m and 800m with composed runs on his welcome return from injury, whilst brother Richard de Camps won the B string steeplechase and took fourth in the A string 400m.
On the womens side, sisters Kathryn Purcell and Alex Purcell competed in the maximum number of events each and were rewarded for all their endeavours with a good haul of points. Kathryn took third in the A string 100m and 200m, fourth in the long jump, fifth in the triple jump and sixth in the 100m hurdles before running both relays! Alex ran well to take third in the B string 100m and 200m, and fifth in the A string long and triple jump before also doing both relays.
Gemma Collier continued her sensational recent form with another massive personal best in the 3000m, taking 17 seconds off her previous best with 11.10 minutes, before taking fourth in the 400m hurdles B string and fourth in the 1500m A string.
Kate Yhnell won the hammer competition from clubmate Anna Robertson, before taking fifth in the shot put, while Robertson took third in the B string shot and sixth in the javelin.
Paula Whitcher made a rare appearance on the track with a fifth place in the 400m before returning to her preferred event of the javelin with another fifth place.
Aerospace 5 (Cheltenham)
South African Etienne Paatjies running for his second time in a Gloucester vest set a new course record in the Aerospace 5 mile with 00:24:52 yet was hardly challenged with the second placed runner being over a minute behind. The next Gloucester runner was the first woman, Gemma Turtle again with a course record in 9th place overall in 28:17. Frisky Lee Smith followed in 17th place with 29:51 whilst ultra runner Jeremy Mower magicked a 30:17 out of his tired legs for 20th spot. The outstanding run of the day by a Gloucester runner came from Gemma Collier who continued a series of personal best runs, this time taking 3 mins 20 secs off her 5 miles best for 29th place in 32:09. Over 2 mins behind V60 Arthur Daley ran a gentle paced race in 34:15, contenting himself with gaining 9 points in the County AAA Road Race series. Jane Leckebusch, 2nd W45, completed the Gloucester Women's team to gain the first team prize. Dave Spackman was 3rd V60 in 37:35. Michelle Stark also aiming at good points for the County AAA Road Race series ran a steady but undemanding race to gain the maximum points by being first W35 in 39:14. Chris Campbell running on tired legs after two half marathons in the two preceding weekends finished 3rd W35 in 39:46.
9 Gemma Turtle Gloucester AC L 00:28:17
17 Lee Smith Gloucester AC M40 00:29:51
20 Jeremy Mower Gloucester AC M40 00:30:17
29 Gemma Collier Gloucester AC L 00:32:09
54 Arthur Daley Gloucester AC M60 00:34:15
71 Jane Leckebusch Gloucester AC L45 00:36:05
79 David Spackman Gloucester AC M65 00:37:35
88 Michelle Stark Gloucester AC L35 00:39:14
94 Christine Campbell Gloucester AC L35 00:39:46
Cotswold Way Relay (Chipping Camden to Bath)
Gloucester AC put out a strong team for their inaugural attempt at the Cotswold Way Relay, a 100 mile 10-stage relay which travels from Chipping Camden all the way down to Bath, finishing fifth overall and second mixed team, just 2 minutes 30 seconds behind Westbury Harriers. The team performed extremely well in the uncomfortably hot conditions, with stage wins for Lucie Woodyatt on leg one and Gemma Collier on leg 6. Woodyatt, who was a last-minute replacement, ran well to finish 16th overall but first female on the demanding first leg, while Steve Millward ran as a guest for Cotswold Allrunners and claimed second spot overall.
Jeremy Mower ran leg two, fresh from a pb over 100km the previous week at Boddington, and was satisfied with 10th place, before Lorraine Ryan defied recent injury problems to finish 11th overall on leg three and second female. Lee Smith took on leg four which was the longest of the day, claiming eighth place against a strong field. Ian Summers atoned for going the wrong way last year with a great run on leg five, finishing in 6th place as he led the team into Stroud. Gemma Collier was 13th and first female on leg six, before passing on to Dave Gresswell who enjoyed the relatively short leg seven to take an excellent fourth place.
Wayne Mayer produced a superb run on leg eight to finish second as the runners began the homeward stretch towards the finish at Bath Abbey. Richard Moor followed on from this with a solid fifth place on the penultimate leg nine, before Luke Herbert finished off proceedings with sixteenth place on the final leg.
BMC Grand Prix (Birmingham University)
Gloucester AC's Steve Millward was delighted to finally dip under the four minute barrier for 1500m at the BMC Regional Grand Prix meeting at Birmingham University last week. After several years of near misses, UK Inter-Counties steeplechase champion Millward managed to stay with the lead group before sprinting down the home straight whilst watching the clock, to finally go under four minutes for the metric mile, with a time of 3.58:83.
Young Athletes League - Match Report 3
The boys and girls of Gloucester Athletic Club took on the might of Radley AC and Oxford AC in round three of the McCains Young Athletes League at Abingdon on Sunday 20th June.
It was a mixed day for the Youth Squad with over 30 Personal Bests being recorded despite finishing lower down the placings than in recent meetings. The strength and sheer numbers of athletes competing for the other Clubs was again Gloucester’s downfall, finishing third on the day by some margin.
In the Under 13 Group new girl Shiya Pinnock ran well in her first YAL competition, recording 11.1s in the 75m and 21.9s in the 150m sprints finishing second in both with PBs. She was supported well by fellow U13 girl Jenny Hayward who not to be outdone ran three PBs with 14.6 in the 70m hurdles, 11.4s for 75m and 22.7s in the 150m. There were further PB performances by Ellen Thrall Shot-7.61m, HJ-1.10m, Joe Beckett HJ-1.10m, LJ-3.12m, Shot-4.48m, Joe Morgan LJ-3.32m, 100m-16s and 800m-2.53:2s.
The Under 15 Group put up more of a fight with a greater number of athletes competing in both girls and boys. Star performance was from Josh Jakeway who continued to improve with three PB performances 100m-13.1s, 200m-26.4s and Long Jump-4.57m. The girls saw Kate Davies improve her High Jump and Hurdles and Danni Mulraney knock eight seconds off her 800m time. Another new girl to the competition saw Lucy Humphreys score well in the Discus and Shot, showing no first competition nerves.
Laurence Leat 100m-12.8s, 200m-25.9s, Discus-13.54m. Tom Beckett Javelin-19.01m, Discus-14.96m, LJ-3.92m. Niall Gibbons 400m-64.9s, Javelin-20.87m, 800m-2.39:0. Jacob Lange Hammer-32.63m, 800m-2.45:9s, Shot-9.89m. Andy Bowers 1500m-5.10:3s, 400m-62.4s.
Harriet Hunter 75mH-12.9s, 100m-13.9s, Shot-5.33m. Kate Davies HJ-1.40m, 75mH-13.6s, Javelin-27.33m. Elin Caine 1500m-6.09:7s, LJ-3.32m. Kelly Constable 100m-13.7s, 200m-28.5s. Danni Mulraney 800m-2.45:6, LJ 3.17m, 200m-29.2s. Hannah Jones 1500m-6.09:0s, Javelin-13.36m.
The Under 17s saw Sean Beckett record three PBs in 400mH-77.9s, 100mH-19.8 and Javelin-29.65m. A welcome return to YAL competition saw Becky Summers also record three PBs in 800m-2.25:5s, 300mH-50.2s, 200m-28.4s. They were supported by Charlie Simmonds 800m-2.27:5s, 1500m-5.28:1s, LJ-3.63m. Douglas Bryant 1500m-4.50:3s, Shot-6.66m. Tim Campion Discus-38.74m, Shot-11.93m, Hammer-22.93m
Team Manager and Coach Garry Hunter said ”I am pleased with the days performances and the Teams never ending enthusiasm and Team Spirit that makes it all worth while. I know that Round Four at Swindon on 18th July will see an even greater improvement in our athletes times and distances which will be thoroughly deserved”
UK U20 Championships (Bedford)
Gloucester AC's Tim Williams was delighted to come away from the UK age group champs with a bronze medal in the under 20 mens hammer, despite being one of the youngest competitors in the event. Williams, who is part of Lorraine Shaw's prolific throwing group, was lying in fourth spot just outside the medals after three rounds with a best of 58.85 metres. In the fifth round, Williams unleashed a huge 61.45 metre throw which put him into third place and was just short of his best ever distance. Despite fouling in the final round, Williams hung on to third and was happy to come away with a bronze medal.
Bourton Hilly Half (Bourton on the Water)
Kim Drinkwater was the leading Gloucester AC athlete at the fourth event in the county road race series, a very hilly half marathon in Bourton on the Water, taking maximum points and finishing second lady overall. Drinkwater powered up the big hill taking the runners out of Bourton just after the start and also finished strongly in a time of 1 hour 33:12 minutes. Jane Leckebusch continued the success story for Gloucester by taking 55th place and first lady over 45, with a time of 1.42.38, followed home by Terry Onions in 1.42:46. Chris Campbell completed a good day for Gloucester in 91st spot and a time of 1.51:36.
UK 100km Ultra Running Championship, Anglo-Celtic Plate
A much improved performance for Gloucester Athletics Club's Jeremy Mower saw the 44 year old from Elmbridge knock an amazing 28 minutes off his personal best when competing for Wales at the UK 100km Ultra Running Championship, Anglo-Celtic. This years event was held in Gloucestershire at Boddington where Mower ran a new PB of 8 hr 28 min 26 sec. He finished 9th in the men's race and helped Wales to second team place behind England. This was Wales best ever performance in the event finishing ahead of Scotland and Ireland. Mower seems to be on form this year having set a 40 mile PB at the Barry Track race in March. He must now decide if he steps up to a 24 hour race later in the year at Perth, Scotland. During the race Mower went through the Marathon distance in 3:18:32 and 50km a little over 4 hr 4 min. Despite the good time the race did not go entirely to plan due to Mower suffering three hay fever attacks because of rape seed and grass pollen. Fortunately a few blasts of nasal spray got him going again. There was plenty of local support from family and fellow athletes from the county, which helped him to dig in at the end when the legs were beginning to stiffen up.
Mallards Pike 5 (Forest of Dean)
Gloucester AC's Steve Millward was back to winning ways at the Mallards Pike 5 mile multi-terrain race, after a disappointing performance at the Midlands track champs the week before. Running with Kyran Hale (Severn AC) for the first mile, Millward moved away on the long uphill section to three miles before pushing the pace in the final two miles to finish almost a minute clear of the field in a time of 26:13 minutes. Richard de Camps, who only decided to run the race whilst on a training run in the area an hour before the race, was satisfied with 5th spot and a time of 28:23 minutes.
Midlands Champs (Birmingham) & Welsh Champs (Cardiff)
Gloucester AC's hammer throwing group had a very successful weekend at both the Midlands Championships held in Birmingham and the Welsh Championships held in Cardiff over the weekend. Leading the way was UK number 1 Zoe Derham who threw a seasons best of 66.89m to win the Midlands title by more than 10 metres, as she prepares to defend her UK title in two weeks time. In the senior mens event, Justin Sysum took his first ever Midlands medal with a superb silver as he threw consistently well, claiming a seasons best distance of 60.92 metres. Mike Tommey finished fifth with a distance of 43.58 metres.
Kate Yhnell had a busy weekend as she took bronze at the Welsh Championships with a seasons best of 48.47 metres, followed by seventh place at the Midlands Champs with 46.88. Beth Sewell was ninth with 43.95m and Anna Robertson claimed eleventh spot with a distance of 39.57 metres.
Over at the Welsh Championships, Carys Parry was a convincing winner of the womens hammer with a solid 62.79 metres as she looks to cement her place in the team for the Commonwealth Games in Delhi later in the year. Also performing well for Gloucester was Paralympian Beverley Jones, who produced a new IPC European record in the discus in the F37 category as she threw 27.85 metres to win comfortably. The distance was also enough to qualify Jones to compete for Great Britain in the World Championships in New Zealand next year.
Cleeve Cloud Cuckoo Land 5 (Cheltenham)
Gloucester AC's Gemma Collier was a delighted winner of the Cleeve Cloud Cuckoo Land 5 mile race, taking her maiden open race victory on the challenging multi-terrain course. Collier has been in superb form recently with personal best times for a range of distances on the track and roads, and ran strongly throughout the hilly race to win by 15 seconds from Sarah Harper of Bourton Road Runners. Collier completed the course in a time of 38 minutes 55 which was good enough for 36th place overall.
Tom Randles was the leading male Gloucester athlete with a fine performance for tenth place, finishing in a time of 35:12 minutes. Ian Summers was next home for the club in 14th place and a time of 36:37 minutes after a race-long battle with Dave Smeath of CLC Striders. Also running well was Paul Nash, who continues his comeback from a long-term injury layoff with 33rd place and a time of 38:30 minutes.
Midlands Track and Field League Div 2 (Cheltenham)
Becky Summers produced one of the many highlights for the combined Gloucester AC and Severn AC team at the second fixture in the Midlands Track and Field League at Cheltenham on Sunday, with a new Gloucester AC U17 club record in the 400m hurdles. Summers showed that her recent training has progressed well to knock four-tenths of a second from the previous club best. There were improved performances from several members of the ladies team, with A string wins for Rose-Anne Galligan in the 400m, Gemma Turtle in the 1500m, Jo Fletcher in the 3000m and Kate Yhnell in the womens hammer with a seasons best. Also securing good points were Anna Robertson with first in the B string hammer in a new personal best and fourth in the shot, Sophie Lambert with third in the 100m, fourth in the 200m and fourth in the 100m hurdles. Sister Cleo Lambert also ran well to claim second in both the B string 100m and 200m.
The mens team also had a strong afternoon, winning the mens section comfortably from local rivals Cheltenham Harriers. As expected, the throwers produced almost maximum points with A and B string wins in the shot, discus and hammer through Gareth Winter, Justin Sysum and Tim Williams. Steve Millward took victory in the 400m hurdles in a seasons best and also the 3km steeplechase, while Tim Dalton dominated the 1500m to win convincingly from team-mate Ben Coldray who wrapped up the win in the B string. Curtley Phillips claimed a win in the triple jump and fourth in the long jump, while Lloyd Andrews had his customary busy afternoon but was particularly pleased with a win and seasons best in the 400m hurdles B string.
Harrison Sayer belied his tender age with two superb new personal best times in the 100m and 200m, performing well against athletes several years older. Nico Constanti was pleased to produce a new personal best in the 400m for 2nd place, not long after taking 2nd in the 800m. Also claiming personal best times were the rapidly improving 15 year old Kyran Hale in the 3000m and also Tom Randles in the same event in his first track race in several years.
The composite team finished third overall on the day and currently lie third in the table after two fixtures, with the next fixture away in Rugby in four weeks time.
Brewer Games (Cheltenham)
Tim Williams of Gloucester AC was the standout performer at the Brewer Games held at the Prince of Wales Stadium on Monday, winning the U20 mens hammer competition by a massive margin with a throw of 61.57 metres. Williams was pleased with the distance, after taking his second successive Midlands age group title two days previously in Birmingham with a distance of 58.29 metres.
There were also wins for Mike Tommey in the senior mens hammer with 45.20 metres and Marion Loveridge in the lady over 45 category with 33.91 metres. Fine second places were achieved by Jacob Lange in the under 15 boys hammer with 31 metres, Ellen Thrall in the under 13 girls hammer with 28.75 metres and Charlotte Stallard in the under 15 girls with 37.46 metres.
Conor Farr took first place in the under 17 discus with 40.26 metres from team-mate Tim Campion with 38.91 metres. The positions were reversed in the shot put with Campion taking victory with 11.54 metres from Farr with 10.74 metres.
Kate Davies had a busy afternoon in the under 15 girls category, taking second in the javelin, second in the long jump, fourth in the 80m hurdles and fifth in the shot put.
In the sprints, Laurence Leat dominated the under 15 boys age group taking first in both the 100m and 200m, while Harrison Sayer claimed second and third in the under 17 mens 100m and 200m respectively.
Harriet Hunter took third in the under 15 girls 80m hurdles and 100m, with Lurenda Mudd claiming third in the 200m and fourth in the 100m in the same age group.
UK Inter-Counties Championships (Bedford)
Gloucester AC's Steve Millward was a delighted winner of the UK Inter-Counties 3km steeplechase title on Sunday, winning his first ever national title. Racing in Bedford in near gale-force conditions, Millward was content to run a tactical race and run in the middle of the lead pack for the majority of the race, before following a break made by Josh Tighe (Lancashire) with two laps to go. Millward then took the lead at the bell and pulled away over the final lap to win by six seconds in a relatively moderate time of 9 minutes 38.82 seconds.
"This has been one of my main aims for the season, but I didn't think I was capable of winning. Quite a few of the top athletes were missing so I thought this was my best opportunity and I felt good throughout the race, despite the windy conditions" said Millward.
At around the time Millward was winning his event, Bola Ogun was also claiming her first ever UK medal after several near misses in recent years in the womens hammer. Ogun, who is part of the impressive throwing group at Gloucester AC, made up for finishing fourth in the two previous seasons, by producing her best throw in the final round to claim a well-deserved bronze with 51.47 metres. "I'm pleased to finally get a medal, but the chance was there to win, so I'm also slightly disappointed. The wind was causing the throwers all kinds of problems so it is encouraging that I still managed to produce a 50m plus throw when I needed it".
Kate Yhnell also competed in the womens hammer and despite being one of the youngest athletes in the field, she threw well to finish 14th with a distance of 43.50 metres.
UK Inter-Counties Fell Running Championships (North Wales)
Three Gloucester AC Ladies represented Gloucestershire in the British Inter Counties Fell Race Championships held at Llangynhafal, Denbighshire. Gemma Collier, Michelle Stark and Christine Campbell ran their first ever Mountain Race to support experienced Longhope based Helen Fines to ensure that Gloucestershire had its first ever lady's team.
Helens Fines lead the team home over the nine and a half mile course in 1:33:24 gaining 9th place in the Lady's race. Gemma Collier, who only two days before had taken over a minute off her 5k best time, finished 37th Lady in 1:48:37 remarking "That was fun!" as she sipped water in the 26°C heat. The ever cheerful Michelle Stark ran steadily to climb the 2050 feet - some of it near vertical - in 2:12:00 finishing 63rd lady whilst Christine Campbell, a late replacement on Friday night, ran 2:36:43 for 67th place. The Ladies team finished 10th in the Championships and were the only English county team south of Cheshire to finish.
Dave Gresswell of Gloucester AC was the leading County man finishing in 68 place in 1:48:11 and finding he could run better uphill than down and was accompanied in the team by Rob Brown in 2:23:57 for 67th place and the first V65 award.
BMC PB Classic (Milton Keynes)
Gloucester AC's Becky Summers produced a superb run at the British Milers Club PB Classic meeting at Milton Keynes on Saturday, producing a time that ranks her sixth in the UK for the under 17 women 1500m steeplechase. In only her second competitive outing over the barriers, Summers finished in a time of 5 minutes 42.55 seconds to claim third in the combined under 20 and under 17 race. After a disappointing run at the White Horse 5km on Thursday, Summers bounced back in style with an excellent run which suggests she is capable of going quicker in her new event over the coming months.
Hereford Half Marathon
Gloucester AC's Kim Drinkwater produced another superb run at the Hereford half marathon on Sunday, claiming her second podium finish of the week with second place and a big new personal best time. Drinkwater paced her run well despite the hilly nature of the course, to take almost four minutes off her previous best to finish in a time of 1 hour 30 minutes 32 seconds. Andy Hawkins was the only other Gloucester AC athlete competing and he performed well but was slightly disappointed to miss out on a top ten overall placing from a field of more than 500 runners. Hawkins finished 15th in a time of 1 hour 23 minutes 42 seconds which was impressive considering the tough opening three miles of the race.
National Young Athletes League - Round 2, Abingdon
Sunday 16th May saw the Gloucester AC Youth Team take on Marlborough and Stratford upon Avon in round two of the McCains Young Athlete League in Abingdon.
Gloucester's sprinters proved too strong for the opposition with 1st and 2nd placings in the U15 girls 100m with Kelly Constable holding off Harriet Hunter for the win in a new PB time of 13.3s. Kelly also won the 200m ahead of team mate Lurenda Mudd in another PB time of 27.7s. Harriet Hunter was also the runaway winner of the 75m hurdles in a new PB time of 12.8s.
Not to be outdone the U15 boys had a 1st and 4th in the 100m with Lawrence Leat and Josh Jakeway, and a 2nd and 5th in the 200m by Lawrence and Josh again. Both boys ran PB's in the two sprints with Lawrence recording 12.5s and 25.7s and Josh 13.2s and 26.8s respectively.
The U17 men saw Ashley Phipps and team mate Harrison Sayer repeat the superb performances seen at the County Champs only last week where Ash narrowly came out on top, both recording 12.5s. The two didn’t hold back in the 100m which again saw them share the same impressive time of 11.5s, a second quicker than the previous week. The win was given to Harrison on this occasion with Ash coming 2nd, both running new PB's. The 200m saw them come together again with another blistering performance which again saw Harrison pip Ashley to 1st place in a new PB time of 23.9s. Ashley came a close 2nd with a seasons best time of 24.1s. The 400m saw Alex Runciman dominate the race from the gun, running a quality lap to record a seasons best of 53.9s.
The Clubs throwers held their own with outstanding performances coming from three of Lorraine Shaw’s throwing Squad. A debut performance from Charlotte Stallard saw her take on the Discus, Shot and Javelin to secure an impressive 13 points for the team. Fellow debutante Jacob Lange came 1st in the U15 boys Hammer recording PB of 32.04m, twice the distance of his nearest rival. Jacob also recorded 8.04m in the shot despite being in his sprint spikes whilst waiting at the start line of the 800m where he ran 2.43:11. Top of the throwers was again Tim Campion who not only came first in Hammer, Discus and Shot with three commanding scores, but also ran in the U17's victorious 4x100m relay at the end of the day. Tim was the biggest points scorer for Gloucester, amassing an impressive 24 points!
By the end of the day Gloucester had acquitted itself well against two larger Teams, managing to come first in 16 events. We now look forward to our next YAL meeting on Sunday 20th June.
U13 Boy: Joe Beckett 100m-15.7s, HJ - 1.20m PB, Shot 4.27m PB.
U13 Girl: Ellen Thrall LJ-2.75m, Shot-6.55m.
U15 Boys: Laurence Leat 100m-12.5s PB, 200m-25.7s PB, Discus-12.56m PB. Josh Jakeway 100m-13.2s PB, 200m-26.8s PB. Tom Beckett Javelin-16.94m PB, Discus-16.27m. Niall Gibbons 400m-63.2s PB, Javelin-17.58m, LJ-3.94m PB. Jacob Lange Hammer 32.04m PB, 800m=2.43:1 PB, Shot-8.04m PB.
U15 Girls: Harriet Hunter 75mH-12.8s PB, 100m=13.7s, Shot-5.68m. Kelly Constable 100m-13.3s PB, 200m-27.7s PB. Lurenda Mudd 200m-28.1s. Kate Davies 800m 2.40:6, HJ-1.35 PB, Javelin-20.51m. Elin Caine 1500m-6.06:5 PB, LJ-3.32m PB. Dannielle Mulraney 800m-2.53:1 PB, LJ-3.97m PB. Charlotte Stallard Discus-14.8m, Shot-6.58m, Javelin-10.79m.
U17 Men: Tim Campion Discus-38.74m, Shot-11.73m, Hammer-24.53m PB. Sean Beckett 400mH-81.9s, 100mH-20.7s PB, Javelin-24.32m.Adam Thrall 800m-2.09:0, 400m-58.5s PB, Shot 3.77m PB. Harrison Sayer 100m-11.5s PB, 200m-23.9s PB, Discus-19.83m PB. Ashley Phipps 100m-11.5s PB, 200m-24.1s. Alex Runciman 400m-53.9s, LJ-5.55m PB.
Mower selected for Wales
Jeremy Mower of Gloucester Athletic Club has been selected to run for Wales in the Anglo-Celtic Plate 100km race against England, Scotland and Ireland. This will be the 6th time Mower will have run for Wales which is a remarkable achievement as selection for ultra-running gets harder each year, with the overall standards improving. At the age of forty-four, Mower managed a personal best over 40 miles in the selection race. This enabled him to claim the final spot in the Welsh team with only four places, instead of the usual five. When Mower started ultra-running six years ago, selection was often on the basis of being able to run 100km (62.15 miles), whereas today the criteria is the ability of running that distance under 8 hours 45 minutes. Wales is probably the least fancied of the teams but often surpassing expectations, managing to claim a second or third position.
Personal best times were achieved in abundance for Gloucester AC athletes at the Berkeley 10k. Steve Millward was narrowly beaten into second place overall but was delighted to record a 40 second personal best with a time of 31.39 minutes, finishing strongly over the second half of the race. Kim Drinkwater also claimed a new best time of 40.32 minutes to take a fine third place in the ladies category, with Gill Gresswell taking a massive three minutes off her previous best time with 52.52 minutes.
There was a strong contingent from Gloucester AC at the Berkeley 10k and the mens team were pleased to take the team title for the second year in a row. Dave Gresswell was 7th overall with 36.30 minutes, followed closely by Jeremy Mower in 12th place with 37.08 minutes and Andy Hawkins in 16th with 37.27 minutes. Ian Summers just missed out on making the scoring team with 20th place and 37.48 minutes, evidence of the strength in depth at Gloucester.
Herve Tribuilloy was next home in 52nd place with 41.16 minutes, followed by the effervescent Dave Spackman who claimed 2nd place in the veteran over 65 category with 42.51 minutes. Jane Leckebusch narrowly missed out on a personal best with 91st place and 44.42 minutes. Humphrey Phillips made a welcome return to racing after a long injury lay-off with a time of 47 minutes, while Chris Campbell completed a good day for the club with 48.15 minutes.
Tewkesbury Half Marathon
Dave Edwards was the leading Gloucester AC athlete at the Tewkesbury half marathon on Sunday, claiming an excellent new personal best time of 1 hour 35.06 minutes, more than three minutes better than his previous best for 161st place from more than a thousand runners. Training partners Melissa Whitlock and Gareth Malsom were both delighted to break the 100 minute barrier for the first time, clocking 1 hour 39.38 minutes to take 244th and 245th places. Terry Onions showed a return to form with 338th place and a time of 1 hour 43. 42 minutes.
Gloucestershire County Track & Field Championships
Gloucester AC's Harrison Sayer was one of the many talented young athletes who took medals at the county track and field champs held at the Prince of Wales Stadium in Cheltenham over the weekend, taking two golds and a silver. Sayer won the U17 men 200m and the triple jump before narrowly missing out on the hat-trick in the 100m, beaten by clubmate Ashleigh Phipps who took gold. Also taking home double gold was Ellen Thrall in the U13 girls section, winning both the javelin and hammer as well as third in the shot put. Becky Summers showed her ability over a range of events, by winning the U17 girls 3000m on Friday night and then returning to win the 400m hurdles on the Sunday.
Also winning county titles for Gloucester AC were Ashleigh Naylor in the senior mens 100m, Kate Davies in the U15 girls javelin, Ollie Cooper in the senior mens triple jump and Tim Campion in the U17 mens discus with a new personal best performance of 40.96 metres. Dave Gresswell and Arthur Daley won the veteran mens over 40 and over 60 categories respectively for the 5000m, with Daley producing a UK-leading time of 18 minutes 53 for his age group.
Lorraine Shaw's hammer throwing group dominated as expected, sweeping all age group titles that they contested. Justin Sysum won the senior mens title with a seasons best 60.87 metres, just ahead of Alex Warner with 60.30 metres. Bola Ogun comfortably won the senior womens title with 53.44 metres which was also a seasons best, from Kate Yhnell who threw 47.06 metres. Marion Loveridge won the ladies over 45 category, while Tim Williams threw a massive 61.83 metres with the junior mens implement to win from training partner Ashley Andrews. In the younger age groups, Jacob Lange won the U15 boys category with 29.18 metres and was joined on the top of the podium by Charlotte Stallard who won the U15 girls section with a personal best 38.27 metres.
Gloucester also claimed numerous minor medals, with standout performances coming from the U15 girls sprint group, Harriet Hunter taking silver in the 80m hurdles, Kelly Constable winning silver in the 100m and Lurenda Mudd taking silver in the 200m. Adam Thrall took silver in the U17 mens 1500m and Gemma Collier took silver in the senior womens 1500m with another big personal best time, following on from her breakthrough run in the 3000m on the Friday night.
Young Athletes League (Leamington)
Gloucester AC found life difficult in the first McCain Young Athletes Track and field meeting of the season, competing with a severely depleted team in Leamington and finishing third on the day.
Athlete of the day was U15 girl Kate Davies competing in the 800m, high jump and Javelin to which she came 2nd twice and 1st amassing a brilliant 16 points. Not to be out done U17 man Charlie Simmonds competed in the 800m, 1500m and then the 400m straight after! He too scored well for the Team with two 2nd's and a 4th to bring home 13 points. In the U13's Joe Beckett battled hard in the 100m, long jump and high jump in which he jumped a PB of 1.15m. Jenny Hayward also ran a PB in the 75m in 11.5s and did well in the 70m hurdles (15.1 secs) and High Jump (1.05m).
The U15's saw a welcome return to the 75m hurdles for Harriet Hunter, running a Pb in 13.4 secs. On a cold windy day the sprinters were off their times with Harriet running the 100m in 13.9s and stepping into the 200m at short notice to run 30.5s. Lurenda Mudd also ran well in the 200m, finishing 1st and claiming the full 6 points. She also joined newcomer Elin Caine in the Shot to record a below par 4.88m. Elin performed well on her debut for the McCain Young Athletes League recording PB's in the Shot (3.69m) and 800m (3.07:8). Another newcomer to the League Josh Jakeway also competed well, running the 100 in 13.5s and the 200m in 27.8s coming 4th in both. He was supporting fellow sprinter Laurence Leat who recorded 13.2s in the 100m and 26.7s in the 200m. The last of the U15's saw Tom Beckett take on the throwing events due to recent injuries. He competed well and recorded two PB's of 14.80m in his Javelin and 17.32m in Discus. Gloucester’s final competitor saw Tim Campion take on the Discus and Shot. Tim did not let the side down recording two 1st places with 39.51m in Discus and 11.69m in Shot. Despite the poor numbers, the team spirit was excellent and team manager Garry Hunter is hoping for a stronger turnout and better weather for the next meeting Sunday 16th May at Tilsley Park, Abingdon.
Midlands Track and Field League (Div 2) Coventry
The composite Gloucester AC and Severn AC track and field team made a solid if not spectacular start to their Division 2 campaign of the Midlands League on Saturday, claiming 4th place overall. Despite missing several key athletes in certain events, the team rallied with some excellent individual performances.
The mens throws produced its usual plethora of points, with Gareth Winter winning the A string shot and discus, Justin Sysum dominating the mens hammer to win and also winning the B string shot and discus, supported by Tim Williams winning the B string hammer and newcomer Dave Anderson taking 2nd in the Javelin B string.
Tim Dalton and Ben Coldray controlled the mens 1500m to win the A and B string comfortably, while Steve Millward waited until the final 100m to unleash a sprint finish to win the 2km steeplechase and, taking 2nd in the A string 400m hurdles and B string 5km. Ashleigh Naylor was a delighted winner of the mens 400m, after finding the competition in the 100m and 200m very strong.
Brendan Goss claimed his usual haul of points on a busy afternoon, among his highlights being a 2nd place in the triple jump, ably supported by Lloyd Andrews who claimed 3rd in the 400m hurdles among his range of events.
The best female performance of the day came from the youngest member of the team, 15 year old Becky Summers, who ran a composed race in the 3000m to move through the field to finish 2nd, after also claiming solid points in the 1500m and 400m hurdles. Gemma Collier provided strong back up by winning the B string 3000m in a massive new personal best. Cleo Lambert claimed useful points in the 100m and 200m before taking 2nd in the B string long jump, with Alex Purcell also faring well in the long and triple jump. Beverly Jones claimed 3rd in the womens shot put and was helped by Marion Loveridge and Paula Whitcher who also scored some useful points.
Gloucester AC's Lorraine Ryan produced a superb run at the London Marathon on Sunday, breaking her previous marathon best by almost 8 minutes to complete the event in 3hrs 7mins 2secs. Despite an injury-interrupted build up to the race, Ryan was able to put in some excellent training sessions on the recent club warm weather training trip to Portugal, and all the hard work paid off in spectacular fashion on only her second attempt at the historical distance.
Ultra-runner Jeremy Mower was pleased to be first club member home, in a time of 2hrs 56mins 47secs, but was restricted slightly by a troublesome hamstring problem which meant that he was unable to stride out fully.
Luke Herbert performed well on his marathon debut, but was disappointed to miss out on his target time, clocking 3hrs 06mins.54secs after finding the second half of the race particularly difficult. Dom Malsom thoroughly enjoyed the race after opting not to try and achieve a personal best, savouring the atmosphere and wonderful crowd support and still managing a very respectable time of 3hrs 26mins 14secs.
Jane Leckebusch was delighted with a new personal best time of 3hrs 31mins.05secs, which took several minutes off her previous best performance, but was frustrated to just miss out on going under 3 hours 30 by an agonising 65 seconds. Chris Campbell also managed a new personal best time, running a very even pace throughout to finish in 4hrs 03mins.57secs. Paul Robins claimed a time of 4hrs 37mins.29secs while debutant Rachael Hancocks was relieved and pleased to finish in a time of 5hrs 02mins.41secs to round off a great day for the club.
Stratford Half Marathon
Andy Hawkins made the trip to the birthplace of Shakespeare to write his own little piece of history, claiming a fine 10th place overall from a field of more than one thousand runners in this years half marathon. Finishing strongly thanks to some recent extra speedwork in training, Hawkins crossed the line in a time of 1 hour 21.45 for his quickest time in a couple of years on a deceptively tough course.
Peter Lloyd also competed and was happy to run quicker than at the recent Forest of Dean half marathon, finishing in a time of 1 hour 28.50 minutes.
National Road Relays (Birmingham)
Gloucester AC's Rose-Anne Galligan led by example at the National Womens 6 stage road relay championships, held in Sutton Park at the weekend, as the team were the highest placed county team on the day with a superb 28th place. Irish international Galligan produced an excellent run on the opening stage as she led the entire field home with a time of 16.20 minutes, an improvement of 15 seconds on her run at the Midlands event four weeks ago and good enough for the third quickest run of the entire day. Facing the unenviable task of following on from this was Jane Leckebusch, who ran a composed stage to keep Gloucester in the mix with a time of 21.25 minutes for the second leg, after coming in as a late replacement for the injured Gemma Turtle.
Anne-Marie Edwards took over on the third stage and ran well for a time of 22.30 minutes, before handing over to team captain Michelle Stark who kept the team in contention with a time of 22.46 minutes. Kim Drinkwater then moved the team back up the field with a superb run, gaining 7 places and a time of 19.19 minutes which was 25 seconds quicker than her run at the Midlands Champs. Gemma Collier produced her customary strong run on the final leg for Gloucester, bringing the team home in 28th place with a time of 20.21 minutes, her quickest ever run at the national event.
In the mens 12 stage event, held over alternate 5.4 mile and 3 mile stages, Gloucester AC found the going tough as several key athletes were missing, but still produced an excellent overall performance to finish in 53rd position. Jeremy Mower started proceedings off for Gloucester on the notoriously strong first leg, finishing in 71st place with a time of 33.23 minutes. Track specialist Nico Constanti moved the team up 5 places on the first 3-mile stage, with a strong run and a time of 16.34 minutes. Nick Cousins took over on the third leg and finished in a time of 34.21 minutes, despite missing large chunks of training in recent weeks. Fresh from a recent successful spell of warm weather training, Richard de Camps produced the quickest short leg of the day for Gloucester with a time of 16.24 minutes before handing over to Tom Randles who then ran the quickest long leg of the day for Gloucester, claiming a time of 30.45 minutes.
Mark Ingram took Gloucester through to the halfway point with a solid run and a time of 18.12 minutes, which left the team in 62nd place. Dave Gresswell then moved through to 58th place on the long seventh stage with a time of 32.35 minutes, passing onto Dave Edwards who kept the momentum going with a time of 19.03 minutes for the short eighth stage. Lee Smith clocked a time of 31.42 minutes for the long ninth stage as he eases down in preparation for the London Marathon next weekend, with Richard Moor producing a time of 20.38 minutes for leg 10 as Gloucester moved up to 55th spot. Andy Hawkins took over for the final long stage and completed the gruelling run in an impressive 32.20 minutes, before handing over to veteran over 60 Arthur Daley who finished proceedings off with a time of 19.13 minutes for the final short stage.
Forest of Dean Half Marathon
Gloucester AC's Nick Cousins was delighted to race to a new personal best time at the Forest of Dean half marathon on Sunday, knocking a minute off his previous best with 1 hour 24 minutes 27 seconds. Despite having to cross-train in recent weeks due to some niggling injuries, Cousins finished in 35th place overall from a field of more than 2000 entrants on a tough, undulating course that started and finished at Speech House. Veteran over 45 athlete and Forest of Dean resident Peter Lloyd made the most of his local knowledge to claim a top 100 spot with 83rd place and a time of 1 hour 29.56 minutes. Lorraine Ryan was next home for Gloucester and was pleased with a time of 1 hour 30.10 minutes, which was good enough for 3rd place in the lady over 35 category.
Kim Drinkwater was another athlete to claim a new personal best time, finishing in 1 hour 34.18 minutes which resulted in her finishing 7th senior lady. Anne-Marie Edwards completed a good day for the Gloucester team with 724th place in a time of 1 hour 54.33 minutes.
Minchinhampton 10km (Stroud)
Club cross-country captain Dave Gresswell was the sole Gloucester AC athlete to take part in the inaugural Minchinhampton 10km on Sunday, taking a fine second place overall on the testing course. Gresswell was unable to stay with the pace of local rival Lee Rankin, who took off from the start, but was pleased with first veteran over 40 which earnt him a trophy, medal, and an Easter egg, after pulling away from the chasing pack on the hills and finishing in a time of 37 minutes 54 seconds.
Gloucestershire County 4km Cross Country Champs (Plock Court)
Strong headwinds and wet, slippery conditions made for slow times in the County 4k Cross Country Championships. Gloucester Athletic Club's Vet 60 team overcame the adverse conditions to take a clean sweep in their category. Arthur Daley placed 17th in the race with 17:05 followed by Vet 65 Dave Spackman in 31st place with 18:49. Spackman ran a steady first two laps and pushed hard on the final lap of Plock Court to finish first V65 despite taking antibiotics to get rid of a lung infection. The team was completed by John McClean who picked up the silver Vet 60 place with 20:03 gaining him 40th position out of the 73 finishers; McLean started off quickly but also suffered from chest problems after the first outward section.
Jason Gresswell V40 whose current training involves much shorter, sharper work finished strongly with 18:12 putting him in 24th place.
Reading Half Marathon
Gloucester AC's Chris Campbell was delighted to produce another personal best performance at the Reading half marathon on Sunday. Campbell took 38 seconds off her previous best as she completed the course in 1 hour 48.59 minutes.
Chedworth 10 Mile
Fresh from his quickest ever run at the Midlands Road Relay Champs, Gloucester AC's Steve Millward was delighted to defend his title at the Chedworth 10 mile multi-terrain race held in the beautiful but muddy Cotswolds on Sunday. After holding off the early pace of Stroud AC's Lee Rankin, Millward moved away on the uphill sections around halfway and pulled away throughout to win in a time of 58.09 minutes. Ian Summers ran strongly throughout to finish in a fine 23rd place, with a time of 70.23 minutes. Not far behind was Peter Lloyd who is returning to form after several months of injury troubles, finishing 33rd in 72.04 minutes. Paul Nash also made a successful return from injury in 50th place, completing the saturated course in 74.54 minutes.
Kim Drinkwater produced her second good run of the weekend to claim third senior lady in a time of 76.15 minutes, after playing a vital role in the Midlands success of the womens team the day before. Junior athlete Becky Summers was pleased to complete the tough course in 111th place from a field of almost 350 runners in a time of 80.48 minutes. Veteran over 55 Terry Onions was satisfied with a time of 92.40 minutes for 219th place, before Chris O'Carroll finished proceedings off for Gloucester with 257th place and a time of 97.29 minutes.
Midlands 12 & 6 Stage Road Relays (Birmingham)
Gloucester AC's ladies team produced their best ever performance at the Midlands womens 6 stage road relays at Sutton Park in Birmingham on Saturday, narrowly missing out on medals after a superb 5th place. With an excellent all round team performance, the team improved massively on their 29th place from last year.
Leading the way on stage one, over a distance of approximately 3 miles, was Irish international Rose-Anne Galligan who flew around the course in a time of 16:34 minutes to lead the entire field home, her time being good enough for fourth fastest overall on the day. Michelle Stark had the unenviable task of following Galligan, but enjoyed her time at the front and held on well with a time of 21:22 minutes. Anne-Marie Edwards produced her best ever run at Sutton Park to keep Gloucester in contention at the halfway point in 14th place, with a time of 22.01 minutes which was over a minute faster than last year.
Gemma Turtle took over on the fourth stage and scorched round the course in a time of 15.57 minutes, which hauled the team back up to 6th place and was the fastest time of the day by some considerable margin. Turtle was frustrated to find out afterwards that she was just 3 seconds away from running the fastest stage in the history of the Midlands Championships! Kim Drinkwater continued the great team performance with her quickest ever run at Sutton Park with a time of 19.41 minutes, the eighth quickest time on her stage, before handing over to the dependable Gemma Collier on the final stage. Collier ran round in 20.30 minutes to take the team up to the dizzy heights of 5th place at the end of the race, which was 45 seconds quicker than she ran in last years event.
Gloucester AC's mens team also produced a superb team performance to finish in 10th position overall, their best result in recent history and the highest finishing county club in the race. Richard de Camps started proceedings off on the 5.4 mile first stage, coming back in 18th place with 29.44 minutes, his quickest time on this course. Andrew de Camps produced a similarly good run on the 3 mile stage two, with 16.45 minutes before handing on to Nico Constanti who brought the team up to 13th place after 3 stages with 16.37 minutes. Steve Millward then claimed the 5th fastest time overall on the 5.4 mile fourth leg, moving the team up to 9th place with his quickest ever run at Sutton Park in 27.46 minutes.
Jeremy Mower and Andy Hawkins consolidated the team position on stages 5 and 6 with times of 17.35 and 18.10 respectively, before Andy Renfree took over on the long stage 7, bringing the team back into the top ten with a time of 28.45 minutes. Ian Summers and Nick Cousins ran the 3 mile stages 8 and 9 in times of 17.45 and 17.39 minutes before Luke Herbert ran the last long stage in a time of 29.54 minutes to keep the team in 11th place. Mark Ingram ran 18.13 minutes for the 3 mile stage 11, before Dave Gresswell finished a fine day for Gloucester AC off in style with a time of 17.21 minutes for the 12th and final stage.
Barry 40 mile Track Race - Welsh Ultra Championships
Gloucester Athletic Club’s Welsh International ultra-runner Jeremy Mower used all his experience in the Barry 40 mile track race which doubled up as the Welsh Ultra-running championships. Setting off at a steady pace he covered the first twenty miles in 2 hours 32 minutes in 9th place. This was his slowest ever midway split compared to running this distance on four previous occasions. In the next 12 miles he kept a similar pace realising he was gaining on the others as they were slowing, moving into 8th. At 32 miles Mower stepped up his pace, realising he was not gaining quickly enough and increased his pace to 6:50 miling. This put him into 5th position. With 3 miles to go he was half a mile from 4th and “decided to go for broke”. An incredible finish saw him take the 4th position with 200 metres to go. Mower also took home with him the first Vet 40 title a repeat of last year’s performance and was second in the Welsh Championship. Mower’s time of 5 hours 5 minutes was a new personal best for 40 miles by over 6 minutes. Mower must now wait to see if he is chosen to run for Wales at the 100km UK Championships to be held in Boddington, Gloucestershire on June 19th, 2010. Providing the Welsh team is picked on form, his selection should be a formality.
Gloucester 20 Mile Road Race
Gloucester AC hosted their annual 20 mile road race on a crisp but cold morning in Quedgeley, on a new course which involved three laps of the country lanes around Haresfield. As the majority of club members were either marshalling or manning the water stations, it was left to a hardy few athletes to fly the flag for the host club. Gary O'Brien from Swindon Harriers was the overall race winner, finishing in a time of 1 hour 59:38, from a field of just under 300 runners. Jeremy Mower was the leading Gloucester athlete, pacing the race well to move through the field and finish 14th in a time of 2 hours 10:59. Running over-distance for the first time was Andy Hawkins, who produced a solid run to finish just behind in 17th place with 2 hours 12:14. Alistair Wakefield was next in, treating the race as a training run at marathon pace for his attempt at the London Marathon in 6 weeks time, claiming 19th spot and 2 hours 13.35.
Jane Leckebusch was the leading lady for the club in 125th place, finishing in a time of 2 hours 37:56. Chris Campbell was delighted to smash her personal best by over 5 minutes, just missing the 3 hour barrier with 3 hours 00:48. Newcomer Salina Wathen finished strongly in her build up to the Brighton Marathon, claiming 253rd place with 3 hours 15.02, followed in by Rachael Hancocks in 271st place with a time of 3 hours 24.02.
Gloucestershire County Road Relays Champs (White Horse)
Gloucester AC dominated the county road relay championships, held at the White Horse in Sandhurst on Saturday, taking senior county gold medals in both the mens, womens and mens veteran over 60 category. Gloucester also claimed the fastest individual legs in both the mens and womens race, through Steve Millward and Gemma Collier
It was Steve Millward who lead the team home in first after the opening leg, having pulled away from Stroud ACs Ben Coldray over the second half of the 3.25 mile course in a time of 15.21 minutes. Track specialist Andrew de Camps took over and kept the team in contention with 17 minutes 33 seconds, followed by Nico Constanti, fresh from a 1.52 pb over 800m indoors the previous week, who ran round in 16.36 minutes. Richard de Camps finished proceedings off to bring the team home in 3rd overall with a time of 16.05 minutes, good enough to take the senior county title.
Michelle Stark led the ladies team off with an encouraging return to form with 21.30 minutes, before handing over to Melissa Whitlock who continued her recent improvement with 21.28 minutes. Gemma Collier completed the great team performance with her best recent run, clocking 21.08 minutes for the days fastest lady award.
In the mens veteran over 40 category, Dave Gresswell started the team off with 17.51 minutes, handing over to Paul Nash who timed 19.47 minutes for a solid run after missing almost 12 months through injury. Jeremy Mower made up some ground on Severn AC with 17.55 minutes, before handing over to Ian Summers who almost caught Severn AC to take the county title, gaining over a minute on their final leg athlete.
Gloucester ACs formidable veteran over 60 team were pleased to take their county title, led off by Arthur Daley who ran superbly for 19.05 minutes to be the quickest over 60 athlete of the day. John McClean kept Gloucester in the hunt with 21.48 minutes and the team was brought to victory by Dave Spackman, who produced a great run for a time of 22.02 minutes.
Wokingham Half Marathon
Gloucester AC's Luke Herbert produced the fastest club half marathon performance of the year so far with an excellent run in the Wokingham Half Marathon on Sunday, finishing 30th in a time of 75 minutes 16 seconds. Herbert started quickly and stuck with a good group before becoming detached and rallying in the final miles to narrowly miss out on a new personal best time.
Gloucester Winter 5 Mile Race - Sandhurst
A small team of three from Gloucester AC took part in this year’s Winter 5 mile road race in Sandhurst, Gloucester. On a cold, but bright winters afternoon, the earlier snow had melted which meant reasonable conditions underfoot.
Leading the club home, was the club cross country captain and V40 runner, Dave Gresswell. Still flushed with the success of promotion to division one last weekend, Gresswell put in a solid performance to finish 8th overall in 29mins 18 secs.
Next home was V60 Arthur Daley, finishing in 12th place in a time of 30mins 54secs. This beat a long standing V60 club record for the distance, previously held by super vet Dave Spackman. Daley was initially disappointed, thinking that he had missed out, until the records were checked, and confirmed that his time had taken nearly a minute off the record. This also places Daley 5th overall so far on the UKA rankings for his age group this year.
Michelle Stark completed the trio of club finishers in just over 37 mins, which was good enough to earn her the lady V35 prize. Stark ran well, and enjoyed the race, despite a lack of training in recent weeks.
Midlands Indoor Open (Birmingham)
Gloucester AC athletes Andrew and Richard de Camps were both in fine form at the Midlands Indoor Open at NIA in Birmingham on Saturday. Both ran in the senior mens 800m A race, with Andrew placing 2nd in a new indoor PB of 1:53.51, following on from his win at the Midlands Champs the previous week. Younger brother Richard stole the show though with 3rd place in 1:55.75, carving more than 1 second off his outdoor PB and 4 seconds inside his previous indoor best, despite this being his first indoor race of the season.
Training partner Nico Constanti was also in action over the weekend, representing UWIC in the Celtic Cup at Cardiff and made amends for last weekends disappointing performance with a cracking run, placing 4th in 1:53.41, a new PB by 3 hundredths of a second and 1.2 secs off his indoor best.
Ashleigh Naylor was also competing at the NIA in 60m and 200m, claiming 3rd in his 60m heat in a seasons best 7.43 seconds and 5th in the 200m with 23.58 seconds.
Midlands & South West Indoor Championships
Whilst brother Richard was running well on the mud in Worcester, Andrew de Camps was producing the performance of his career to claim the combined Midlands and South-West Indoor 800m title. After several near misses in recent seasons, de Camps finally confirmed his class by winning in an excellent time of 1 minute 53:97 seconds to claim Midlands gold and South West gold. After keeping off the early pace, de Camps took the lead with 100m to go and was never challenged. After remaining undefeated in Midlands League competition last season, de Camps will be hoping to continue this rich vein of form into the summer months. Training partner Nico Constanti was unlucky to miss out on the final by one place after being pipped on the line in his heat, producing a time of 1 minute 58:46.
After a seasons best time of 51.73 seconds in his 400m heat, Ashleigh Naylor was delighted to come away with the South West Championships bronze medal with a 52.05 clocking in his heat. Lurenda Mudd produced a solid run against tough opposition in the under 15 girls 200m, claiming 4th place in her semi final with a time of 27.96 seconds after qualifying through the heats with 27.8 seconds.
Midlands Womens Cross Country League (Walsall)
Gloucester AC Ladies team finished their first ever full season in the Midlands Womens Cross Country League in fine form on Saturday, at a tough course in Walsall. Despite slipping down the rankings slightly on the final race to 21st team, Gloucester were pleased with 14th overall for the season.
Leading the way this time was Melissa Whitlock in 65th place, who has had a fantastic first season with the team and has progressed well. Team captain Michelle Stark was satisfied with 83rd place and the team was completed by Helen Davies in 123rd place, who is putting in the miles in preparation for the London Marathon in April.
Birmingham Cross Country League (Malvern)
Gloucester AC created history on Saturday at the final Birmingham and District Cross Country League Division 2 fixture at the Malverns, as they made a triumphant return to Division 1 after an absence of 20 years. Having dropped to the depths of division 5 in recent years, Gloucester are finally back in the top flight of Midlands cross country running after producing a superb team performance over the four fixtures this season. After taking third place team on the day and second in the overall rankings, team captain Dave Gresswell said "Thanks to the efforts of everyone involved, we can be proud of this achievement and we are determined to become a permanent fixture in the top division".
On a challenging course in the Malverns, Steve Millward led the team home with a solid run for 4th place, which resulted in him taking the individual series title. Several athletes produced their best performances of the season, none more so than Richard de Camps who stormed through the field to take a fine 7th place and 3rd place in the junior mens series rankings, by far his best run in a Birmingham League fixture. Consistent team scorers Andy Renfree and Luke Herbert were next home in 17th and 18th places respectively, leaving Jeremy Mower and Dave Gresswell to secure promotion for the team with 63rd and 68th positions.
Ian Summers led the B team in with comfortably his best run of the season in 74th place, followed in by Andy Hawkins in 88th spot. The effervescent Arthur Daley, fresh from his recent 5km road performance which currently ranks him 3rd in the UK, was 109th and Dave Jannetta produced a strong sprint finish to claim 123rd place. Mark Thrall ran well for 154th place, with club stalwart Humphrey Phillips making a rare appearance on the mud to close the B team scoring in 180th place. The B team finished 3rd on the day and 2nd overall, emphasising the strength in depth that Gloucester now possesses. It was perhaps appropriate that club chairman Andy McKenzie completed the proceedings on a triumphant day by finishing in 191st place.
Millward is king of May Hill
Gloucester AC's Steve Millward was a delighted winner of the May Hill Massacre multi-terrain race on Sunday, held on an 8.7 mile testing course near Huntley in the Forest Of Dean. In gloriously muddy conditions, Millward finally pulled away from Stroud AC's Lee Rankin on the final climb and raced to a 50 second victory in a new course record of 54 minutes 34 seconds. Millward said "Lee was flying past me on the downhill sections but I was stronger on the uphill, so I knew that I needed a gap before the long downhill stretch to the finish and really worked hard up the final hill".
Lloyd Pritchard made a surprise appearance in a Gloucester vest and used his knowledge of the local area to claim 7th place in 60 minutes 22 seconds. Nick Cousins improved his time from last year by three minutes to finish 23rd with 63.46 minutes, with Peter Lloyd not far behind in 35th place.
Cross Country captain Dave Gresswell completed the arduous course in 60th spot with 69.16 minutes, ahead of first lady Lorraine Ryan who enjoyed the ankle deep mud to finish in 95th place from the field of over 500 runners. Matt Wade was close behind in 110th place, with Michelle Stark in 311th spot and Terry Onions claiming 348th position.
Gloucestershire XC Champs & Glos XC League (Cheltenham)
Maxine Gray was the star performer for the Gloucester AC Ladies team at the final Gloucestershire Cross Country League fixture, held at Pittville Park in Cheltenham on Saturday. The race, which incorporated the postponed county championships was held over a testing course in relatively good conditions and Gloucester produced a strong turnout, which resulted in the team taking the county bronze medals.
Gray produced her best run of the season with an excellent 17th place, having improved in every race in the league series. Following closely behind was Lorraine Ryan, who celebrated her birthday in style with a fine 19th position. The dependable Gemma Collier closed the scoring for the womens A team with 32nd place, with Mel Whitlock running well for 47th spot to lead the B team home for 4th place in their category. Team captain Michelle Stark and Chris Campbell were evenly matched throughout the race, with Stark just edging it with 60th and 61st places respectively. Anne-Marie Edwards continued her return from injury troubles with 71st place and was supported by Helen Davies in 89th and Gill Gresswell in 92nd place.
In one of the closest finishes in county history, Steve Millward just missed out on claiming his first county cross-country title after an excellent race-long battle with Will Ferguson from CLC Striders. After a dramatic sprint finish, both athletes were given the same time but Ferguson got the verdict on the line to deny a disappointed Millward. Luke Herbert claimed his best placing in the league this season with 6th spot, before a keenly contested tussle between Alistair Wakefield, Dave Gresswell and Nick Cousins resulted in them taking 40th, 41st and 42nd places respectively. Closing the A team scoring was Jeremy Mower in 48th place to secure 4th place in the team stakes and county bronze medals. League secretary Arthur Daley was next back for Gloucester with 75th place and 2nd veteran over 60, just ahead of Mark Ingram in 78th. Dave Janetta produced a strong sprint finish for 103rd place, with newcomer Herve Tribuilloy claiming 112th place. Veteran over 65 Dave Spackman was satisfied with 126th place and the scoring was completed by Mark Thrall in 132nd position.
In the under 11 girls, Briony Goddard-Jones continued her consistent top ten performances with 7th place, and was supported by Kezia Smith in 20th and Chloe Jones with a great sprint finish in 29th place for 5th in the team standings. Hannah Jones and Elin Caine were almost inseparable in the under 13 girls race, claiming 19th and 20th places. Sam Roberts took a break from all her hockey and netball exploits to finish 7th in the under 15 girls race, before Becky Summers took 5th spot in the under 17 ladies race.
The under 11 boys team also finished 5th on the day, thanks to Brandon Gifford in 8th place, Henry Adams in 13th spot and David Irvine in 29th position. Adam Thrall completed a successful day for the club with a strong run for 6th place in the under 15 boys race.
Welsh Indoor Championships ~ Turtle gets double
Gloucester AC's form athlete Gemma Turtle returned to the Welsh Indoor Championships on Sunday and claimed her second title of the season, storming away to win the 3000m in a time of 9 minutes 8.11 seconds. Turtle, who had been struggling with a cold in the build-up to the race that forced her to miss the televised meeting in Glasgow the previous day, controlled the race from the 1km point and pulled away for a convincing victory. Team-mate Rose-Anne Galligan was marginally outside her personal best for second place with a time of 9 minutes 17.79 seconds.
Midlands Cross-Country Championships
Richard de Camps produced an encouraging run at the Midlands Cross-Country Champs at Stafford Common on Saturday, finishing in a fine 20th place in the mens junior race. De Camps has been struggling with a shin problem all winter, so was delighted with his run on the frozen course and to come through a tough race unscathed.
Bridge Inn, Shortwood 5k (Bristol & West AC)
Gloucester AC's Arthur Daley took part in the January edition of the Shortwood 5km race in Bristol recently, finishing 33rd overall in a time of 19:07 minutes to convincingly win the first veteran over 60 prize.
Linda Franks Memorial 4.2 Mile Road Race (Cheltenham)
Gloucester AC's Steve Millward took the honours at the Linda Franks Memorial Road Race in Cheltenham on Sunday, the first race in the county series for 2010. Defending his race and series title from last year, Millward was content to run with Jon Parker from Cheltenham Harriers for the majority of the race before sprinting clear in the final 400m to win in a time of 22.23 minutes. Next home was Jeremy Mower in 10th place overall and 3rd veteran over 40, with a time of 24.47 minutes. Mark Ingram continued his strong recent form with 13th place overall in 25.01 minutes before Alistair Wakefield claimed 19th spot with a time of 25.31 minutes. Ingram and Wakefield then continued their marathon training by running the 10 miles back to Gloucester.
Peter Lloyd was satisfied with 20th place and 1st veteran over 45 with 25.36 minutes, closely followed by Ian Summers who was 24th with a time of 26.09 minutes. Becky Summers produced an excellent run to finish in 42nd place and 2nd junior female with a time of 27.49 minutes, just ahead of Dave Spackman who took a convincing win in the veteran over 65 category in a time of 28.14 minutes. Club newcomer Herve Tribouilloy made his competitive debut for Gloucester with 56th place and a time of 29.42 minutes. Jane Leckebusch was the final club member home in 82nd place from a field of more than 160 runners with 31.32 minutes.
Welsh Indoor Championships ~ Turtle smashes Welsh All-Comers Record
Gloucester AC's Gemma Turtle produced another scintillating performance at the Welsh Indoor Championships in Cardiff, taking her second Welsh all-comers record in three weeks, this time over 1500m. Turtle reduced her personal best down to 4 minutes 14.06 seconds, which also broke the Championship best performance by 5 seconds, and has now been selected to run for the Commonwealth Select team at the televised Aviva Games being held in Glasgow this coming weekend. Helping Turtle to achieve this time was team-mate and training partner Rose-Anne Galligan who led the way for the first 1000m but still held on to produce a superb time of 4 minutes 16.8 seconds.On the mens side, Nico Constanti and Andrew de Camps both claimed medals in the senior mens 800m with silver and bronze respectively. Both athletes produced composed performances in their separate heats to win comfortably and progress to the final, where Constanti ran 1 minute 54.61 to take silver and de Camps ran 1 minute 55.10 seconds to take the bronze. Coming off the back of several outings over cross-country recently, both athletes displayed an impressive turn of pace which bodes well for the Midlands Champs in a few weeks time.
Midlands AA Open Throws Meeting (Birmingham)
Several members of the Gloucester AC elite hammer throwing squad made their seasonal debut at a chilly Alexander Stadium on Saturday, producing some encouraging performances. Using the open throws meeting as a gauge of how winter training has progressed, Justin Sysum won the senior mens competition with a distance of 55.89 metres, defeating junior team-mate Tim Williams who was delighted with a new personal best distance of 52.85 metres. Mike Tommey was satisfied with 43.18 metres to take 5th position, whilst in the womens open competition, Anna Robertson produced a throw of 35.78 metres for 6th place.
Birmingham & District XC League
Gloucester AC mens cross-country team put in a superb performance at the third Birmingham & District cross-country fixture, held at Wyken Croft Park in Coventry on Saturday, which sets them up for promotion to Division 1 for the first time in over a decade. Gloucester produced their lowest points score of the season to consolidate 2nd place in the league behind a powerful Telford AC, enhancing the growing reputation of the club as a distance running force.
Leading the way was Steve Millward who ran a solid race, but was slightly disappointed to finish 5th after vying for 3rd spot for much of the race. This leaves Millward top of the series rankings and aiming to wrap up the individual series title at the final fixture at Worcester in 4 weeks time. Andy Renfree produced his best run in a Gloucester vest with 14th spot after a below par run at the Worcestershire Champs the previous week. Just behind was the fast-improving Nico Constanti who is getting better as the cross-country season develops and was pleased with 19th position and 3rd junior male in the series rankings. One place behind was the ever dependable Luke Herbert who is having yet another strong season. Richard de Camps shrugged off a recent shin problem to finish in 22nd, with brother Andrew de Camps rounding off an excellent first team performance with 38th place after his best run of the season.
The B team also finished 2nd overall with the lowest team score for the season thus far, with Lee Smith starting the scoring with 58th place. Jeremy Mower was next in for 69th position, closely followed by Mark Ingram in 73rd with a very encouraging run. Ian Summers produced his customary good performance with 87th place, with Alistair Wakefield just behind in 88th spot which bodes well for his marathon attempt in the spring. Closing the scoring was Andy Hawkins in 98th, who ran well despite finding the going tough.
Team captain Dave Gresswell struggled round in 108th place after suffering with a virus for the past week, followed in by Tom Randles who put aside his dislike of cross-country to record 112th position. Arthur Daley was next in for Gloucester with 129th place after missing several weeks through injury, with Dave Edwards in 148th place and cross-country debutant Gareth Malsom claiming 153rd position. Dave Janetta enjoyed the slog through the thick mud to finish in 160th place and club chairman Andy McKenzie completed a successful day with 217th position.
Midlands Womens XC League
Gloucester AC's womens cross country team put in a strong performance at the third fixture in the Midlands Womens League held at a muddy Wyken Park in Coventry on Saturday. Lorraine Ryan made a welcome return form a niggling injury problem to lead the team home in 42nd place in a high standard competition. Maxine Gray produced her best run of the season to finish just behind in 46th position. Gemma Collier continued her recent upturn in form for 69th place, with Mel Whitlock coming back in 88th. Team captain Michelle Stark enjoyed her slog through the mud for 110th place and Ann-Marie Edwards splashed through the icy puddles in preparation for her triathlons later this year, with 126th position.
UWIC Indoor Grand Prix (Cardiff)
Gloucester AC's Gemma Turtle smashed her personal best performance over 3000m at the UWIC Indoor Grand Prix on Sunday, taking the Welsh All-Comers record in the process and beating the qualifying time for the World Indoor Champs being held in Qatar in March. With a previous personal best of 9.05.41 minutes, Turtle set a ferocious pace from the gun with the aim of beating the 9.03 qualifying time. Turtle managed it comfortably by finishing in a superb 8.56.23 minutes, the fastest time ever produced by a female at the track in Cardiff.Irish cross-country international Rose-Anne Galligan, running on an unfamiliar surface, also produced an excellent run and just missed beating her own personal best performance with a time of 9.20.94 minutes.
Welsh Masters 5 mile Championship
Gloucester AC’s Welsh international Ultra runner Jeremy Mower, showed he still has some speed at the shorter distances when he competed in the Welsh Masters 5 mile Championship in Cardiff on Sunday. With a temperature of two degrees centigrade and a freezing wind he set off with the leading pack, but was dropped before the second mile. He held on to finish 3rd in the over 40 category and took home the Bronze medal. Mower was reasonably happy with his time of 29:43 as the conditions were poor and he had suffered from the fast early pace. Mower said “I’d probably lost half a minute going off that hard but I wanted to win it no matter what the consequences of failing. I think some of the athletes were surprised to see me having a go at them, as they know me in Wales for marathons, or the Barry 40 mile track race which I’m doing in March to defend my Welsh Ultra-distance title”.
New Year 5
Pete Lloyd, V45, 8th (30:49) was the first Gloucester AC finisher in Severn AC's New Year 5 at Hardwicke, closely followed by youngster Jack Evans in 32:40. Dave Spackman V65 finished 2nd in his age group in 34:17 whilst Hayley Winters was fourth lady in 35:05. Chris Campbell LV35 completed the course in 38:13. Mike Storey, running his first race for 5 years, finished the 5 mile out and back course in 47:46 mins. Mike is known for his 100 Marathons achieved by 2002.