Ever popular relays attract hundreds

PUBLISHED: 10:50 03 August 2017

Fairlands Valley Spartans Kelly McHale and Juliet Fullwood. Picture: PENNY SCHENKEL

Fairlands Valley Spartans Kelly McHale and Juliet Fullwood. Picture: PENNY SCHENKEL

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Fairlands Valley Spartans’ Relays in the Park proved as popular as ever with 128 teams in both genders and over 500 runners taking part for this year’s edition.

The event sees teams of three for the women and five for the men race 3km each around Fairlands Valley Park.

The fastest woman on the night was Rosie Keane from Luton who stormed round in nine minutes 51 seconds, four seconds faster than her time last year.

She set up her club to win in a total of 32.29 and Luton also had the fastest man, Ian Kimpton, who went round the undulating course in 8.29.

That wasn’t enough, however, as Bedford & County won the men’s race in 45.35.

The host club did themselves proud too.

As well as providing dozens of marshals and other volunteer helpers for the event, they won two bronzes in the Hertfordshire County Championships, which were incorporated in the event.

Grant Ramsay, Richard Springall, Steffan Ford, Simon Jackson and Andrew Patterson clocked 50.07 in the seniors (18-39) race while Brian White, Richard Bruce, Tim Saban, David Riddell and Danny Hukin came home in 55.26 in the veteran category.

In other action, Grant Ramsay made it back-to-back first place finishes at Stevenage Parkrun, finishing in 17.30.

Brian White was eighth in a new course PB of 19.33 with Nick Gill also notching a new course PB as he finished 17th in 20.33.

Tracy Pez was the first Spartan woman to finish, coming home in 12th place in 25:22.

Sharon Crowley ran a new course PB and also made the top 50 in 28:51 and Claire Emmerson completed as a visually-impaired guide in 40.35.

In other local parkruns Chris Holland, Daniel Sutton and Tim Robinson all made the top 50 at Westmill with Verity Fisher coming eighth in the women’s race.

At St Albans, Barry Osborne was 17th male in 19:43 while Madeleine Pritchard was sixth woman in 22:18.

Paul Maguire was the only Spartan to venture to Ellenbrook Fields, finishing 14th in 21.14 on his first visit and Tracy Stiles was 39th in 33.25 in the first-ever parkrun at Heartwood Forest near St Albans.

Elsewhere, Andy Jay ran 23.53 at Exeter Riverside and Darryl Stevens clocked 39.30 at Salisbury.

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