Astrid breaks two club records

PUBLISHED: 09:43 23 November 2006 | UPDATED: 11:14 06 May 2010

Astrid McKeown was in blistering form for North Herts Road Runners as she shattered two club records in the space of five days. At the opening race of the Stevenage Dash in the Dark 5k series, McKeown took nine seconds off the previous record set on the s

Astrid McKeown was in blistering form for North Herts Road Runners as she shattered two club records in the space of five days.

At the opening race of the Stevenage Dash in the Dark 5k series, McKeown took nine seconds off the previous record set on the same course last year to win the ladies' category in 17:30.

And four days later, she bettered the half-marathon record by almost three minutes to cross the line as runner-up in a time of 1-21:19 at the popular St Neots Half-Marathon.

It was a busy week for the Squirrels with members competing at four different events.

The Letchworth club had more than 40 runners at the first of the three-race Stevenage 5k series which was also the county championship for the distance.

Two further club records were broken as Derek Myall set a new best time for a Vet 60 of 20:22 and Don Powell recorded a new best time for a Vet 70 when he crossed the line in 23:40.

There were a host of personal bests from members including Nick Beresford who was the first club member home in 16:41, Steve McKeown (16:49) and Pete Northover (17:49).

At the other end of the scale, Allison Cook knocked two minutes off her previous best time to finish in 23:38 and Christine Sharp reduced her best by 40 seconds to finish in 24:08.

Earlier the same day, two members competed at the Henlow 10 organised by the RAF.

Duncan Hooker and Sally Harkins were among the competitors that were bussed to the start near Old Warden and ran the 10 miles back to RAF Henlow via the villages of Ireland and Shefford.

Hooker completed the run in 69:47 and Harkins in 91:52.

On Sunday, North Herts had 30 runners among more than 1,000 competitors at the increasingly popular St Neots Riverside Half-Marathon.

A pleasant rural course in bright autumn sunshine brought the best out of the Squirrels with Steve McKeown managing to stay ahead of wife Astrid!

He led the club home in eighth place with a new personal best time of his own of 1-18:01.

Further personal bests came from Adrian Sherwood (1-25:52), Martyn Annetts (1-28:10), Mike Mello (1-29:24), Neil Ward (1-39:01), Finlay Simpson (1-42:07), Jon Hunt (1-43:52), Paul Bowal (1-45:47), Graham Thompson (1-51:53), Lisa Thackeray (1-52:18) and Catherine Marsden-Jones (1-54:16).

Other times: Gary Cook (1-22:30), Pete Sibbett (1-23:00), John Franklin (1-25:15), Richard Thackeray (1-26:22), Melissa Winters (1-29:10), Jane Chappell (1-31:56), Marc Trussell (1-34:43), Claire Messenger (1-38:50), Suzy Trott (1-40:04), Jo Summers (1-43:24), Lisa Nash (1-50:28), Roger Bamberough (1-50:02), Lindsay Cook (2-13:33) and Lorraine Hewitt (2-23:14).

Also on Sunday six members travelled to Bishop's Stortford for a 10-mile road race.

The improving Pete Northover recorded his second personal best of the week as he finished in 15th place dipping under one hour for the first time in 59:24.

Also running at the looped course taking in farm roads and residential paths were Roger Witherick (68:00), Steve Taplin (68:25), Duncan Hooker (69:00), Ian Sutcliffe (81:16) and Bob Boss (88:34).

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