Spartans celebrate their promotion

PUBLISHED: 12:43 14 August 2008 | UPDATED: 16:26 05 May 2010

Fairlands Valley Spartans were out in force on Sunday for the Salisbury 5-4-3-2-1 off-road marathon. This run takes in five rivers, four hills, three large country estates, two castles and one cathedral (Salisbury) on its route in and around the surroundi

Fairlands Valley Spartans were out in force on Sunday for the Salisbury 5-4-3-2-1 off-road marathon.

This run takes in five rivers, four hills, three large country estates, two castles and one cathedral (Salisbury) on its route in and around the surrounding countryside of Salisbury.

Running the marathon distance for the first time, Richard Bate was first Spartan to finish in 4-05:02.

Times: Richard Bate 4-05:02, Gerry McCabe 4-24:30, Rob Shaw 4-37:15, Chris Leigh 4-40:22, Amanda Brook 4-40:22, Mike Newbitt 4-41:22, Carol Paul 5-01:02, Kevin Lawlor 5-20:08, Dave Paul 5-25:41, Sue Leigh 5-42:22, Tricia Hopper 5-42:22, Julie Goodwin 5-42:22, Sharon Crowley 5-42:22, Michaela Sanders 6-01:17, Mark Sanders 6-01:17.

Simon Bell finished first male veteran, and second overall, in a time of 28:16, at the Beds AAA five mile at Cranfield on Friday evening.

Wife Annette finished 59th overall, seventh female, and second in her age category in a time of 33:52.

Saturday evening saw the Spartans in party mood as they celebrated their promotion after winning Division Two of the four-race midweek road running league earlier in the summer.

Individual awards were collected by:

* Chrissie King - winner of her age category and third female overall.

* Barbara Wilson - second in her age category.

* Simon Bell - second male Vet 40 and fifth overall.

* David Bowker - third male Vet 40.

* Ron Cohen - second male Vet 70.

In addition, team awards were presented to:

* The women's vet team which finished second overall (Sharon Crowley, Gillian McFarlane and Bev Aitken).

* The men's vet team which were first overall (Jim Brown, Steve Smithson, Richard Sidlin, Les Betts, Roger Biggs and Gerry Corrance).

* The women's senior team which finished second overall (Chrissie King, Chris Feely, Annette Bell, Sara O'Callaghan, Tracy Pez and Barbara Wilson).

* The men's senior team which finished second overall (Simon Bell, Richard Bate, David Bowker, Todd Gray, Graham Blackburn, Ben Harris, Simon Jackson, Michael Green, Matt Jamieson, Alan Donald, Andrew Patterson and Andy Bramall).

In total, 101 different Spartans contributed to the club's success in winning the division and promotion to Division One for 2009 - their 25th anniversary.

Ladies' captain Sharon Crowley collected the title winning shield on behalf of the club.

Astrid and Steve McKeown of the North Herts Road Runners brought home a pair of first place prizes from the Cranfield five-mile race on Friday.

Steve set a new personal best and V35 club record to win in 27:44 ahead of Simon Bell of Fairlands Valley Spartans.

Astrid was first in the ladies' race by almost a minute completing the course in 29:32, also a personal best and V35 club record. The Squirrels secured second place in both the men and ladies' team races.

Peter Scrowther also altered the club record books setting a new men's V45 record finishing in 30:24 and 22nd place.

Oliver Saville continued his recovery from injury with an excellent 26th place in 30:46 and Stewart Bryant was next to finish in 32:00 and 36th place.

Paul Kelly (41st, 32:27), John Franklin (46th, 32:45) and Martyn Annetts (50th, 33:04) also took part as did a number of other club members.

In the ladies' event, Rachel Annetts finished in 40:40 with Karen Dodsworth shortly behind in 41:04.

Other times: Alan Jones (33:41), Michael Mello (34:38), Colin Calcutt (37:02), Robert Riggall (38:32), Ian Sutcliffe (40:38) and William Crone (43:40).

Scrowther set another personal best when he travelled to Weston Turville in Buckinghamshire for the Bearbrook 10k. Pete finished in 32nd place from around 300 runners in a time of 38:34.

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