Stevenage relay event lets big Garden City Runners squad ‘do what it does best’

PUBLISHED: 12:00 31 July 2018

Garden City Runners' Tom Wackett at the Fairland Valley Spartans 3K Relays.

Garden City Runners' Tom Wackett at the Fairland Valley Spartans 3K Relays.

Archant

Garden City Runners defied the intense heat on the hottest night of the year as a big squad tackled the Fairland Valley Spartans 3K relays.

Garden City Runners' Hannah Frank at the Toronto Beach Jazz Festival 10K in Canada.Garden City Runners' Hannah Frank at the Toronto Beach Jazz Festival 10K in Canada.

The Stevenage-based event saw temperatures creep well over the 30C mark but GCR were still represented with 67 runners plus supporters making the journey up the A1.

The ladies raced in trios while teams of five were needed for the men.

And among the many impressive performances, it was those from the club’s beginners programme that brought the most pride.

Jennifer Hill and Amy Slater are recent graduates while first timers included Anna Bellingham, Elizabeth Dean and Steve Edwards.

Bellingham’s time of 13 minutes 51 seconds showed a true new star in the making while the men’s own promising first-timer Ryan Kean posted 11:51 on his anchor leg.

The GCR women’s A team of Hannah Frank, Becca Hayden and Charlee Chapman finished eighth overall with Hayden’s 11:45 ranking her ninth fastest female on the night.

And the trio of Rebecca Barden, Yvonne Jones and Veronica Shadbolt came fourth in the county vets championship.

For the men, the youth squad of Tom Wackett, Craig Brown, James Huish, Danny Figg and Kean were fifth fastest while Russell Casey, Rob Casserley, Nigel Cavill, Neil Brittain and Neil Hume came 10th overall, taking bronze in the vets race.

Hume’s 9:48 made him ninth quickest.

GCR captain Sean Bowen said: “It was a truly brilliant night for GCR. We had 10 women’s teams and eight men’s.

“The lads were brilliant, but the highlight was seeing Charlee bring it home for our girls’ under-35 stars to such a great result.”

Bowen also praised the event saying: “Members of every shape, pace and competitiveness can enjoy and be a big part of it.

“It was an event to remember and a fitting climax to the end of the summer racing season. It was GCR doing what it does at its very best.”

Two of that team also had good results elsewhere.

Hannah Frank completed the Toronto Beach Jazz Festival 10K third in her age category while Tom Wackett came second in the Westmill Parkrun.

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