The Sunderland 5k always attracts a very strong field of runners across the 2 races and it certainly did again on a hot, humid Thursday 11th July.
I certainly think that first mile can be the maker or breaker of your race, go off to fast you then find it difficult to get into a rhythm for the remainder of the run, especially with that slight head wind going out towards the lake. However putting that aside it’s a super-fast course with good support around the finishing area which you can hear on your approach to that area of the course which certainly encourages everyone to go that little bit faster.
Yes it’s a club championship event for us but it’s superb to see so many Elswick Harriers attend this event which could potentially put some off due to the strength of runners around them. Credit to everyone who turned up and had ago, races need runners!
The V50 men head of first with the ladies in which saw Guy Bracken of North Shields Poly cruise to victory in 16.18. Our own Mark Turnbull run 18:10 finishing 8th. This was an amazing time after completing the TriX on June 29th 2019 which incorporated a swim of 4,121yd followed by sitting on the saddle for 115.78 miles and then just a mere marathon to finish. Mike Russell 21st 19:14. Mark Mcnally finished in 35th with a time of 21:06, this is incredible for a guy that’s in his 70s, if I’m running times like that when I’m his age I will be more than happy. To see him and Club Chairman Harry Matthews who is also V70 whom finished 48th crossing the line in 23:25 is very inspiring for us younger ones. Robert Lambert who flew in especially from Spain ran 21:31 finishing just behind Mark in 37th. 40th Richard Hudson 21.57. Our little legs Stevie Curry came 50th in 24:02 with Aiden Cairns on his Birthday ran a respectable 26:27 crossing the line in 60th position.
The Ladies race was won by Charlotte Penfold of North Shields Poly in 17:40. Amy Fuller was the first Elswick Harrier home in 19:05, 24th Catherine Lowes 20:39, Robyn Naylor who bagged a 21:14 pb came 30th, 35th Arabella Pearce 21:44, 38th Suzanne Stephenson 22:03, 56th Melissa Bateson 24:08, 79th Claire Gilfillan 26:26, 83rd Deborah Wilmot 27:18, 94th Laura Clegg who has been struggling with plantar fasciitis recently 28:55,
Looking at the men’s race which was won by Sam Hancox of Morpeth Harriers in 15:02. Elswicks Andrew Ball was gutted on the night not to break 17 mins as he finished 55th with a time of 17:15, however he had just been on holiday and still managed to knock a huge chunk off last years’ time, I’m sure he won’t have to wait for too long. Scott Brady was returning to his normal strength over 5k as he ran 17:57 finishing 71st. The ever consistent Steve Robertson came in 74th narrowly missing out on sub 18 as he ran 18:05. Richard Houghton 85th 18:19. Crossing the line in 102nd was Jonathan Rewcastle who ran a pb of 18:54, stunning run Jonathan well done you must have been those new trainers. Ben Hall is certainly becoming stronger week by week as he finished in 126th with a time of 20:16 in which he was aiming for around 20mins. 111th Chris Pearce 19:16 strong run, 119th Carl Marshall 19:30, 124th Lee Coulson 19:54, 135th Daniel Nettle 20:49, 138th Michael Clegg 21.07, 155th John Ryan 24:15.
The run of the night for the Elswick men came from Andrew Bell who rarely runs with a watch decided to wear one that particular evening, much to his delight he ran a pb of 16.43 coming in 42nd that just shows you the strength of the field.