Manchester Parks GP – Salford 5K
The Salford 5k is the traditional launch pad for the annual Manchester Parks Grand Prix through five Manchester parks. It took place on a new and, seemingly, popular course within Heaton Park. Held on a Thursday evening rather than the traditional Saturday, it was in the hope of attracting more entries but the damp, drizzling evening put a damper on big numbers. However, it didn't deter excellent club performances.
We had three superb age-category winners! Jan Nicholls (19.08) continued her fine form to win her L40 category and not only finish second female but smashed her PB by a massive ninety seconds. Her current form was reinforced since then with a PB by ten minutes over a fell race she ran last year! Jackie Cordingley (21.43) has an unprecedented age-group record in this series. In the past six years, she's been the L35 Grand Prix Champion; the L45 Champion three times and the L50 champion for the past two years. With a fine L55 victory, she's clearly serving notice for this year's title. Don George (30.59), the club's longest serving member with over sixty years under his belt, gave notice of his return with a fine M75 victory aided by his new bionic knees.
We also had two seconds in age-category. Frank Cordingley (19.54) has been in the top end of age-group rankings for a decade. With M45 2nd and 3rd under his belt, let's hope he wins this year's M50 title? Lynda Rowlinson (22.00) has also had an unprecedented record in this Grand Prix. In the past six years, she's been the L35 runner-up twice, L45 champion three times and 2nd last year and her second place indicates she's chasing this year's L50 title. Jenny Miles (27.31) is a star! She came into running late; taken to it like a duck to water and her fine run indicates she's challenging for the L60 title. She took her most recent L60 title in the 'Stride Through The Woods' Trail race in Hyde a few days earlier
An indication of the current depth of the M50 & M60 categories is that in form Jerry Smith (22:46) could muster only fifth(He was 1st M55 in the same trail race as jenny Miles) and M60 supremo Terry Lonergan (21.32) was fourth overall . Brian Bradshaw (23.00) was also fourth in his M50 category, just a week after he won his first race in the BUPA Gt.Training 5k in Alexander Park in a similar time. In the L35 category Zoe Gmerek running is on the crest of a wave. She was rightly over the moon to improve her PB by a massive forty-five seconds and that followed a few days earlier being the first lady, first in her age category and setting the course record in the #Stride Through The Woods' trail race in Hyde
Other individual participants were Mike Kilmartin (16.59) tuning up for the summer 5k series; Richard Edwards (17.23) who's just joined us; Rob Flannery (25.27) and David Marsh (27.29). Our ladies trio (Jan,Jackie and Zoe) also won the team prize and our men's teams were 2nd,9th and 11th. Well done to all. Keep an eye on the website Fixture List for the remaining four races in this Grand Grix.
Thanks to Terry Lonergan, you can view the race on You Tube by clicking the link workshttp: http://terryrunningonempty.blogspot.co.uk/
In the junior 3k race well done to the Bezzina brothers (Dillon and Jordan), the Absiyeh brothers (Khalid and Saeed) and Kyle Conway who displayed fine ability by all being among the top three finishers in their age-categories.
In other recent road races, Mark Brewer recorded 38.36 in a wet and windy Bolton 10k whilst Simon Jackson shaved thirty seconds of last year's time and newcomer Rosa Elliott recorded 1:01.17.
In the Goyt Valley 10k Mike Hatch was 5th in 40.04, Mike Wharton 48.07 and Laura Davies 57.49. Finally, well done to our top British steeplechaser and Commonwealth Games finalist Stuart Stokes who was only two seconds short of his PB in clocking 29:31 in the recent BUPA Gt.Ireland Run
Posted 30/04/2012 16:35