Leamington C&AC pip Coventry Godiva to claim Track & Field promotion place

Leamington C&AC's promotion-winning Midland Senior Track & Field squad. Picture submitted
Leamington C&AC's promotion-winning Midland Senior Track & Field squad. Picture submitted

Leamington continued their stunning ascension through the Midland Senior Track & Field League with a third successive promotion putting them in Division Two for next season.

Determination to compete in every event, along with inspired performances from several individuals meant Leamington won the final meeting in Solihull to pip big-city rivals Coventry Godiva to the second promotion place by half a point.

The result was a fitting finale for team manager Marion Childs who is stepping down after ten years in the post.

Josh Guest led the way with a winning high jump clearance of 1.90m, while Phil Gould’s two years of hard work paid off as he finally broke the two-minute barrier in the 800m (1.59.9).

Laura Clarke came close to besting her 400m time, while Mary Donaldson was runner-up in a hard-fought shot put competition and Rebecca Kitching, who recently returned to competition after several years out, finished second in the pole vault (2m 40cm).

Meanwhile, after a long, slow recovery from injury, Leamington C&AC’s Sue Harrison made a return to the racing scene in a low-key trail race at Coalport, near Telford.

The Railway Ultra offered runners the chance to run varying distances from nine to 38 miles along the route of a disused railway, with Harrison taking on the 19-mile option.

Harrison aimed to run a steady pace to test the progress of her recovery and was satisfied with a time of 2hr 2min 55sec, which put her first lady and fourth overall out of 36 finishers.

The 19-mile race was won by Paul Wass in 2:09:34.

Seventeen Spa Striders headed over to Hook Norton to run the beautiful and undulating Hooky 6.

Paul Edwards was first back in a time of 36:37 for 11th position, followed by Andrew Bonjour (39:14).

Carolyn Wilkinson (39:37) led the ladies home in third position overall and first V45.

Fiona Edwards was next across the line with a time of 43:13 followed closely by Clare Hinton (43:47).

Graham Garlick clocked 40:16 for 38th to lead home the Leamington C&AC quartet, with Paul Okey 20 seconds and four places back and Nick Tawney (42:52) just pipping his wife Susie (42:58).

Richard Broadbent was the leading Kenilworth Runner in 55th position in a time of 42:07, with clubmate Louise Andrews third LV35 in 42:27.

Tom Dable finished 176th in 53:09 and Pauline Dable was 199th and first LV65 in 56:57.

There were 244 finishers and the race was won by James Bolton of Woodstock Harriers in 32:25.

Selected others (Spa Striders unless stated): 43, Simon Parsons (40:38); 58, Hartwig Busch (42:12); 80, Clive Parpworth (43:33); 100, Matt Leydon (45:12); 111, Adam Newton (46:16); 116, Anne Hurrell (46:43); 120, Doug Rattray (46:50); 137, Hannah Smith (49:06); 162, Amanda Wiggins (51:43); 179, Claudine Piper (53:23); 202, Dave Lithgow (57:14); 217, Gary Perkins (60:00).

Kenilworth Runners’ Mark Alldritt finished 553rd in the Rock n Roll Dublin Half Marathon in a time of 1:38:04.

The race was won by Craig Ruddy of Belgrave Harriers in 1:09:40.