Onwards and upwards for James
Cross country fixtures are coming thick and fast at this time of year particularly with South Derbyshire Road Runners involvement in both area versions of the Derby Runner League. On Sunday it was the turn of the Derby/Staffordshire version with 31 members completing a 2 lap course of approximately 6 miles in total at Allestree Park. Again, it was 18 year old James Farmer who led the men’s team home with a superb 2nd place finish. A day after celebrating completing 250 parkruns, mainly at Rosliston, he had the satisfaction here of edging out his regular training partner and motivator, Chris Pearson who ran brilliantly for 4th place. Ross Clarke, who is having a terrific series, was next in 8th place with Stuart Halsey producing another quality run in 12th. Nathan Fagan and team captain Andy Orme collected the 27th and 33rd place finishing tokens with strongman Romain Chambard and a resurgent Matt Long completing the men’s team finishers in 41st and 47th places respectively.
Pushing Long all the way were Nigel Atkins in 49th and Ross Ballinger in 53rd with a really tight inter-club battle resulting in Andy Lindley in 60th just edging out Chris Elsegood in 61st and, the Club’s most improved runner, Paul Glover in 63rd. Kev Clarke ran solidly for 81st place before Tony Richards, Gary Price and Dave Walters had their own race within a race as they finished in 95th, 96th and 97th places respectively. Mark Murkin gave everything to complete the men’s finishers in a creditable 113th place.
With Jenny Laing restored to full fitness after missing last week’s race the Club’s women were assured of a great lead out and she didn’t disappoint here as she collected the 3rd place finishing token. Christina Hawtin ran superbly for 5th place with Tracey Glover and the improving Lisa Wright having their own personal battle as they completed the women’s team finishers in 15th and 16th places respectively.
Slowly getting back to form women’s team captain Nikki Reeves was next in 26th place with Sam Skidmore and triathlete Hannah Wintrip both running well to finish in 30th and 48th places. Rebecca Lenaghan in 56th, Emily Atkins in 59th and Sarah Walters in 65th made light of the conditions before Emma Sharpe, Pauline Cooper and Cath Johnstone gave their usual maximum effort to complete the finishers in the women’s race in 76th, 90th and 96th places respectively.
Sam Bassett and Kelvin Taylor were much further afield with both tackling the half marathon distance. However, the races couldn’t have been more different with Sam tackling the 37th version of the Essar 4 Villages Half Marathon around the country lanes of Cheshire and Kelvin the forest trails of Coed-y- Brenin in the Buff Winter Trail Half Marathon. What they both had in common though was that they both ran with distinction recording chip times of 01:26:33 and 02:4:37 respectively.