From castle to coast for Hartlepool Harriers

Burn Road Harriers at New Marske
Burn Road Harriers at New Marske

HARTLEPOOL Burn Road Harriers took to the picturesque surroundings of Alnwick Castle to take part in the Alnwick Races.

a 5k, 10k and half marathon were raced around the grounds of the castle.

Two harriers took on the longest challenge – 13.1 miles along trail and hills.

The start was set beautifully along the castle moat, taking in a relatively flat trail run along gravel paths and some relatively uneven fields for the first four miles.

Once they had covered this flat they approached the first hill, it wasn’t so steep as it was long maybe a mile or so uphill.

Andy Minister took seventh place overall in a time of 1:23:47 and Jason Bland, determined to duck under the 1:40 bracket, did his trademark sprint to the finish to complete the half in a time of 1:39:57 for 40th position of 209 runners.

Meanwhile, two of our fairer members took part in the 10k.

Lucy Claber had a great race over the undulating course and completed in 47:20 placing fourth female and 26th overall of 136 runners.

Lisa Dawkins knocked a fantastic two minutes off her 10k PB which was gained on flat roads.

She had a great race, crossing the line in 52:07 for 13th female position and 46th overall.

The racing did not stop there – up and coming Harriers Sophia and Connie Dawkins thoroughly enjoyed winning first and second girls in the 1k race known as King of the Castle 1K run.

Sophia shot off with an impressive start leaving the rest of the group behind.

However, younger sister Connie paced herself, which gave her a strong finish and brought her in as first girl back, closely followed by her big sister as second girl behind her.

A great day out and thoroughly recommended to club and non-club runners, one to watch out for next year.

The sixth race of the summer target race series took place on Wednesday evening with 16 Harriers among 145 athletes testing their legs and lungs around a quick, flat two lap course along the seafront in the New Marske Summer Coast Road 5k.

The race was won by Lewis Timmins of Morpeth Harriers in the open men category.

The winner of the female race was our very own Tracey Waller in a time of 17:24, knocking three seconds off her previous best over 5k and placing 19th overall in a very strong field.

Michael Lamb proved his performance over 5k at the Middlesbrough race earlier this month was not a one-off,.

Setting a brilliant standard there in 16:15, he raced around New Marske in similar style, crossing the line in 16:30 for eighth position and first male vet.

Tracey was the next harrier home in 17:24 (19th) with Bryan Astill very close to her footprints in 17:30 (20th).

Alex Marshall had another cracking run, racing to the finish line in 18:00 (27th), with Simon Bennett knocking over 40 seconds off his PB to cross the line in 18:03 (29th).

Jack Hutton was perhaps the stand-out performance of the evening (a difficult statement to make as there were around six or seven PBs gained), racing to the line in 18:05 (30th).

John Davis was next in, completing the course in 18:33 (37th).

Andy Lamplough continued his great season, finishing in 19:00 (45th with John Mansfield nest in 18:03 (47th).

Darren Smith ran a cracking race, knocking over a minute off his PB for 19:21 (53rd).

Darren is producing some great results already this season and looks to get even stronger if he can stay injury free – careful during those rugby matches Darren.

Neil Simon was next in 19:57 (60th), his first sub-20 5k in a few years he was pleased with his performance.

Dave Wallace ducked under the 20 minute bracket, charging to the finish line in 19:59 (61st), with Sarah Black very quickly next for a PB of 20:02 (62nd). Sarah would certainly have cracked 20 minutes too if she had not been verbally encouraging Jane Wistow when her head went down at two miles.

Jane lost focus here and Sarah provided the support she needed down the back straight to dig in and face up to the fact that it had to hurt to be quick.

It worked and after a short while, Jane was back in the zone, crossing the line in 20:18 (69th) knocking 20 seconds off her previous best.

Peter Johnson was pleased with his first race for a while, crossing the line in 22:35 (99th) let’s hope he can stay injury free over the summer months.

Emma Watson completed the brilliant team of Burn Roaders finishing in 25:49 (128th) which is a great result considering Emma has been running longer distances of late and not worked on speed for a while. This race was off the back of a 14 mile run over a hilly course a few days earlier, so well done Emma.