Gade Valley Harriers flock to the MK Winter Half Marathon

A team of 14 Gade Valley Harriers tackled the MK Winter Half Marathon
A team of 14 Gade Valley Harriers tackled the MK Winter Half Marathon

The big Gade Valley Harriers competition this weekend saw 14 club members brave the rain and cold to take to the roads of Milton Keynes for the MK Winter Half Marathon.

Competing with 1,535 other runners, first home for the Harriers was James Birnie in a new PB of 1:31:22. Chasing Birnie home was Steve Newing in 1:32:12, Laura Sharma in 1:35:25, Sian Hibbs in 1:36:01 (PB), Andy Cook in 1:37:45, Robert Bowler in 1:39:47, Tracy-Aldridge Jones in 1:42:52, Dave Wise in 1:43:55, Rob Potton in 1:48:42, Rich Hutton in 1:50:49, Jaqui Sampson in 2:04:44 (PB), Martin Storrie in 2:05:27, and Helen Heathcote in 2:14:52 (PB).

The Berwick family took part in the Hemel Santa Dash on Sunday

The Berwick family took part in the Hemel Santa Dash on Sunday

Elsewhere, at the Regents Park 10K in London, Odette Messenger from GVH dug deep to cross the line in 1:01:00.

Definitely not in club colours this weekend was Anita Berwick, who joined her family in the Hemel Santa Dash on Sunday. The 2.5-mile family run is held annually in aid of the Hospice of St. Francis.

As well as running, the GVH committee are already hard at work organising their hugely popular Marathon Training Runs for next year.

The events attract runners from all over the country who are training for a spring marathon, and are a set of three runs over 12, 17 and 20 miles.

Odette Messenger completed the Regents Park 10km run in London

Odette Messenger completed the Regents Park 10km run in London

The runs are one month apart and timed to fit in with the training schedule leading up to the London Marathon on April 24, but are of great use to people competing in any spring marathon.

As they have been for the last 15 years, the runs cost just £5 to enter on the day and start and finish at the GVH headquarters at Boxmoor Cricket Club in Hemel Hempstead.

The dates for your diary are Sunday, January 31 for the 12-mile run, Sunday, February 28 for the 17-miler, and Sunday, March 20 for the 20-mile, with each of the runs setting off at 9.30am.

For further details, please wisit www.gadevalleyharriers.co.uk/london-marathon-training-runs/

Meanwhile, at the parkruns this week, the Harriers had 11 athletes competing at five of the timed 5km runs.

The Harriers’ home parkrun of Gadebridge Park saw Scott Dixon claiming second overall place in 20:53, with team-mates James Thomson completing in 22:52, Russ Bailey in 26:42, Paula Cook in 27:54 (PB) and Gina Oliver in 28:43.

Black Park had Guy Wollett and Vince Ellerby in the GVH colours, racing 303 other runners where Wollett took third place home in 18:37, Ellerby finishing in ninth place in 19:22.

Anthony James and Anthony Willcox were the GVH presence at the St Albans parkrun where, competing against 204 other runners, James took fifth overall place in 18:14 with Willcox crossing the line in a new PB of 19:59.

In Canterbury, Matt Ashby pushed hard to finish their parkrun in third overall place in 18:53, while in the hills of Tring, Tom North put on a fine show to claim fourth overall place in a time of 22:04.