British Masters Road Relays
Glenn Savage & Anne Chinoy
28/04/2018 Sutton Park, Birmingham
Having had 3 teams set to compete only six days earlier, it was a case of déjà vu as late withdrawals and juggling of the pack culminated in us having to go with just a M45 team.
In stark contrast to the previous weekend where several of our athletes had to tackle baking hot temperatures in the London Marathon, we were met with rather cold, damp conditions in the Midlands. However, this did not deter the four on duty.
Entrusted with getting us off to the best possible start, ace in the pack Paul Green did not disappoint; bringing the team home in 3rd place with joint 8th fastest of the day in 16:57. It would be a test to maintain our position as the race progressed, but Jon Terry met the challenge head on, running a fine 19:49 in his first road relay for the club. Glenn Savage, dropping down from his M55 category, demonstrated that he has recovered well from the recent Manchester Marathon with a solid 18:28. It was left to Elton Davies to anchor the team to a very creditable 14th place. Elton displayed signs of a return to form and fitness with his 19:23 effort.
We certainly are capable of winning medals in all age categories, but nevertheless it was a really solid performance from those involved on the day.
It was an earlier start for our 2 full teams, but despite a few last-minute transport changes and rather dismal wet weather conditions, everyone arrived at Sutton Park in good time. Special thanks to Les Croupiers for sheltering our runners in their club tent until Glenn valiantly arrived with the Sale Harriers shelter!
With a total of 7 runners, made up of 2 V35s, 4 V35s and 1 V55, serious consideration had been given as to who should run in which team. With Dave Rodgers’ expert advice, it was concluded that the 4th fastest should compete in the V35 race (4 legs), with the remaining 3 in the smaller V45 race (3 legs).
Team Manager Anne Chinoy (V45 running in the V35 team) and Lynda Rowlinson (V55 running in the V45 team) had the slightly daunting task of starting the teams off on the challenging 5.08K route at 10:30am. With both runners returning from injuries and not yet back to former fitness, they did well. Anne completed the undulating course in 11th place in the V35 race (20:54) and Lynda came in 14th in the V45 race (24:33).
In the V35 team, Sinead Ferguson was next and finished in 13th place in 22:18 while Julia Reynolds, our second V45 runner dropping down a category, gained 2 places to bring the team back into 11th position with a time of 22:36. Last (but certainly not least) with a strong finish and fastest leg of the day for SHM ladies was Clare McCarron. Currently going from strength to strength, Clare completed the course in 20:37 to finish the V35 race in 10th place (out of a total of 29 complete teams).
Taking over from Lynda in the V45 race, we were delighted to welcome Jan Nichols back into the fold. Jan heroically renewed her membership at short notice to ensure we had 2 complete teams. Jan did a great job maintaining the 14th place finishing in 23:59 before handing over to new V45 Carla Ousey, racing in her SHM Training Weekend Gola trainers to gain 3 places and finish the V45 race in 11th place (out of 20 complete teams) with a time of 23:55.
While the weather may have disappointed, the performances certainly didn’t. The runners all enjoyed the fantastic Sale Harriers team spirit and soaked up the excellent atmosphere of the British Masters Road Relays while tucking into a great selection of baked goods in our club tent before heading home. Well done teams!
Posted 14/05/2018 16:08