Whilst most/some of our attention last weekend might have been on the World Athletics Championships in Budapest one of the Harrier juniors was busy winning the national u17 men’s 3000m title on the track in a closely fought race at the Alexander Stadium in Birmingham. In a gutsy front running approach to the race the Harriers junior male athlete of the year, Tom Webb, held great form especially over the final 600m to hold off all challengers to win in 8.38.
Meanwhile there was a host of Harriers of all ages at the annual Baltonsborough Road races, with both the 5 mile and the 1.5 mile events being won by Harriers – local resident Alex Coombs in the longer event and Oskar Beck, for the boys, and Rosie Train, for the girls, over the shorter distance.
There was at least one Harrier out competing in Budapest (me!) but you won’t have seen the so called ‘Heroes Run Mass Race’ on TV, as it used part of the World Athletics Championships Marathon course and was open to all comers. One of the joys of travelling is being able to run and compete all over the place. Read on also for a Harrier who has just competed her first Ultra, gaining a 3rd place and it was also a hot day at the Bridgwater 10K and Half Marathon with another Wells Harrier taking pole position.
Just a reminder that as the Track & Field season now winds down – last SW League fixture on the 3rd ; last Open fixture at Yeovil next Saturday 9th – that there are the road relays to look forward to and then the start of the cross country season. Please contact Harrier Secretary Alexander Coombs to express an interest in competing so that you can be entered in time (free to Harriers & YOAC members) and for the junior age groups consider offering to help team manage your sons/daughter’s age group at such events.
DEADLINE FOR SOUTHERN ROAD RELAYS is to let Alex know no later than 6th Sept for a team entry!
England Athletics u17 Open Championships – 27th August
The Webb report:
“It was a really stacked field with all athletes sub 9mins to qualify. Tom (aged 15) went in as one of the few year 1’s but on paper with the 4th quickest time.
He had a very set race plan to make it fast and not get boxed in. All went to plan and the front was contested by all of the top 4 based on entry time.
Tom has worked hard on finishing and he was able to hold off the others and sprint home for the win. A sub 60 final lap was rapid. This resulted in a new PB of 08:38:04 good enough for 6th U17 time in the UK this year.
It was great to see him race intelligently and he was absolutely overwhelmed by his achievement.
It is all about Triathlon at the moment. Although he is strong in running he is even stronger when combined with cycling as a combo and less so when combined with swimming. The way it is set up as swim heavy he suffers a bit.
I do strongly believe what he is doing in Tri is helping his running no end, loads of work where he doesn’t impact his legs so badly…. (Looking forward, we know of) the importance of an indoor season which …we are already scheduling. A mix of XC and Indoor I think. Very keen to protect him as much as poss!
Soon into the Street 5k, and I think the long standing U17 record might be in danger!”
Having seen the video from the last 500m or so, it was a lovely bit of front running to win - Tom kept really good form whilst holding off his rivals! A great demonstration of mature racing.
Baltonsborough 5mile & 1.5 mile road races – Bank Holiday Monday 28th August 2023
Pete Wright reports:
“With a fine dry day in prospect for the 2023 Baltonsborough Show on August Bank holiday Monday 28 th the 5 mile and Junior 1.5 mile races attracted a record field of runners for this annual event. Starting and finishing from the Village Hall and School over 140 entered the main race with over twenty juniors and a few parents covered the 1.5 mile distance.
With favourable conditions and cooling breeze, the 5 mile race started ahead of the junior & fun run, with the juniors completing their race before the senior race. With an appreciative crowd awaiting finishers the leading juniors finished in under 9 mins. First home was 12 year Oskar Beck just 2 seconds ahead of Edward Salter with Dominic Cook taking third place overall. The first junior female honours went to Rosie Train closely followed by Elizabeth Salter.
The 5 mile race brought together a wide breath of athlete’s across all ages including several 70 and 80 year olds. The sharp end of the race saw a very close race to the line between Alex Coombs (Wells) and Wayne Loveridge (Chard), each crossing the finish in a blistering sub 27 mins for the 5 miles just 2 secs apart clocking 26:57 and 26:59 respectively. Wells City Harrier Matt Lusby took third place in 27:54.
The 1ST Female was Joanna Carritt a 45 vet runner clocking 33:37 with Wells Harrier Rosie Park second placed female and Hannah Keating third.
The many veteran runners and numerous clubs were well represented with many outstanding runners clocking impressive times, amongst the finishers and age category winners were:-
Males - Chris Selman V40, Paul Card V50, Graham Goldsmid V60, Anthony Sprules V70, Len Horlock V80
Females – Hazel Hole V 45, Harriet Quast V 35, Marie Wadey V 55, Kim Clark V 65, Sue Nicholls V75.
Race sponsors were Baltonsborough Parish Council and Baltonsborough Royal British Legion providing the winners perpetual cups and vouchers for the junior award winners additional sponsors included, Train Station, Framptons, Burns the Bread, with drinks c/o Tesco’s.
Thanks go all the Race Directors, race time-keepers/results and all the many marshals and race officials who kindly assisted along with support from Wells City Harriers.”
Budapest 10k Heroes Run – 27th August 2023
“It’s fairly common for host cities of major global Championships to put on a mass event alongside the main ‘show’ especially as some of us might have been sitting in the Stadium for some/all of the week and not running as much as usual. Anyway the Budapest event was reasonably well organised for such an event and attracted 5,000 or so entries all tempted to race on part of the Marathon course over 10km.
…But…it was actually very hot and humid in Budapest last weekend, so much so that the race organisers decided the day before the 10k race to considerably shorten the distance to c6k and suggest that some runners might decide not to compete in the mass event. In the end about 4,000 ran – setting off in waves, so pity those who started in some of the later waves. Winning time was by David McCarthy of Ireland who has got a sub-4 minute mile; sub-14 min 5,000m time behind him (& he looked pretty good when racing!). I was 1,365th according to the chip timing in 31.46.”
Mendip Challenge ultra – 26th August 2023
Phoebe Aspinall reports
“I did the 50km “Long Marathon” in the Mendip challenge.
I was 3rd fastest female, 16th overall and the youngest at 18.
Even though getting lost added me an extra 2km and I did 52k. It was my first Ultra!”
That's great running. I know the feeling of going slightly wrong in an off-road event (where is everyone?) but well done at getting 3rd place.
Bridgwater 10K and Half Marathon
On Sunday 3rd September many runners lined up in Bridgwater to run the Half Marathon, 10K or Fun Run. On a (fairly) flat course, lots of people would have wanted to push for a PB. Unfortunately, the hottest day since June hampered this and most were just happy to finish without getting too much sunburn. The Half Marathon started at Morganians Rugby Club and looped around the villages of Chedzoy, Stawell and Sutton Mallet. Zak Hurrell had a great race taking victory in a time of 1:13:34 taking the lead in the final 2.5K. Alex Coombs managed to claim 3rd (1:16:18), with other Harriers, Jeremy Linter (19th - 1:25:08), and Jonathan Williams (81st - 1:42:57) managing to beat the heat and finish in respectable times. Kathryn Williams was also hitting the roads in the 10K finishing in a time of 55:22 in 74th place.
Harriers with their finishers medals at Bridgwater.
Competing for the Harriers in Championships/team events/Legaue matches
Details for the Southern Road Relays on 23rd Seprember at Aldershot are here. Deadline to advise Harrier secretary is 6th Sept.
Mondays - sessions for juniors age 8-15 re-start on 4th September 6.30pm at Millfield Track. Sessions for Middle Distance/XC runners (age 10+); Sprints (age 10+); and Fun athletics (age 8-10).
Tuesdays - The training plan for September & October sessions at Millfield track has now been uploaded.
See Training tabs for details