Leamington C&AC’s Andy Savery confirmed his return to fitness with a convincing win in Sunday’s BHF Warwick Half Marathon.
Savery set a strong pace from the off to regain the title, clocking 1hr 12min 54sec, which was just 25 seconds outside his winning time from 2015.
Coventry Godiva’s James Griggs (1:16:28) was some way back in second, with Kenilworth Runners’ Andrew Siggers third in 1:16:53.
A last-minute decision to run by Pete Soley was rewarded with a personal best of 1:22:19 and 11th place, with Soley leading home a massive turn-out of 52 Spa Striders.
Fellow Striders Mike Pugh (1:26:59), Keith Wilson (1:27:14), Andrew Bonjour (1:27:42), Simon Parsons (1:27:42), Rich Sykes (1:28:50), Elliot Cook (1:29:04), Adam Notley (1:29:07) and Gethyn Friswell (1:29:27) all broke the 90-minute barrier, Friswell for the first time, while Luke Turner (1:36:07) took ten minutes off his previous best.
There were also personal bests for Striders’ Chris Wilson (1:38:49), Clive Parpworth (1:39:04) and Ben Cohen (1:53:56).
Kenilworth Runners were well represented, with Wayne Briggs 32nd in 1:26:00 and Simon Corley 41st in 1:27:15.
Charlotte Everard (1:27:53) dominated in Spa Striders’ ladies’ section, putting in a performance to showcase her excellent winter training and coming away with third female overall and a five-minute PB.
The high mileage training of Melissa Venables (1:31:04) did not prevent her taking the next Striders slot and fifth female, followed by the close packing of Kate Gadsby (1:33:07, PB), Fiona Edwards (1:33:40) and Carolyn Wilkinson (1:33:41).
Personal bests were earned by Helene Wright (1:46:40), Hannah Smith (1:47:19) and Lorraine Parsons (1:48:28).
Lucy Marcovitch (1:57:39) fought her injury demons and was victorious, finishing with a well-deserved personal best and first sub-two hour result.
Kathleen McCann (2:09:16) also celebrated a personal best.
Leamington C&AC’s Sue Harrison, who was no fan of the cold conditions, treated the race as a training run and moved steadily through the field to finish fourth female and 93rd overall in 1:31:52.
She was closely followed by clubmate Jenny Jeeves, who smashed her personal best by more than five minutes to come home in 1:33:18.
Jeeves was overhauled in the closing stages for the second successive week by Kenilworth Runners’ Laura Pettifer, who paced her race to perfection to finish eighth lady in a new best time of 1:33:06.
Louise Andrews (17th lady in 1:36:51) was the next Kenilworth female across the line, with Annika Shepherd, in her first run in the green of Kenilworth, 19th lady in a new PB of 1:37:45.
Gaul Audhali was 21st lady in a PB of 1:37:57, finishing 201st overall, while Tina Crow (1:42:18) and Jane Kidd (1:46:19) also recorded half-marathon bests.
The first lady was Kate Wright of Stratford AC in 1:25:09.
Selected chip times and gun positions, Spa Striders unless stated: 65 , Nick Williams (Kenilworth Runners, 1:29:08 ); 79 , Neil Sheward (Kenilworth Runners, 1:30:34); 81, Robert Mantell (1:31:17), 86, Simon Perkin (Leamington C&AC, 1:31:36); 88, Dan Stannard (1:31:08); 84, Tim Stooks (1:31:31); 96, Jim Wiberley (1:32:15); 130, Chris Hitchman (Leamington C&AC, 1:34:36); 147, Paul Okey (Leamington C&AC, 1:35:29); 149, Colin Bailey (Kenilworth Runners, 1:35:11); 156, Richard Zanetti (Kenilworth Runners, 1:35:27); 158, Clare Hinton (1:36:15); 188, John Weir (Kenilworth Runners, 1:37:10); 190, Tom Williams (Kenilworth Runners, 1:37:19); 219, Peter Stockbridge (Leamington C&AC, 1:40:12); 220, Ben Parkinson (1:39:42); 234, Faye Barr (Leamington C&AC, 1:40:52); 247, Bethan Gwynn (1:39:03); 251, Stuart Marti (Kenilworth Runners, 1:40:21 ); 259, Emma Kennedy (1:40:20); 275, Ville Tiitola (1:41:07); 282, Jack Gammon (Leamington C&AC, 1:40:11); 326, Stuart Lee (1:42:14); 337, Phil Houghton (Kenilworth Runners, 1:43:23); 345, Dorota Woloszynska (Kenilworth Runners, 1:43:33); 353, Melanie Knight(Kenilworth Runners, 1:43:42); 382, Claire Dyer (Kenilworth Runners, 1:45:06);408, Ruth Tennant (1:46:33); 423, Doug Rattray (1:47:08); 429, Jude Baum (1:45:26); 493, Clare Bryan (1:48:51); 524, Catherine Friggens (1:50:01); 532, Martin Pepper (1:44:52); 539, Lucy Tugwell (1:50:39); 545, Rosie Banks (1:50:56); 551, Emma Bish (1:51:04); 552, Kerry Jones-Leggatt (1:51:04); 568, Amanda Wiggins (1:51:17); 583, Richard Bicknell (1:50:46); 614, Lloyd Harriman (1:48:20); 647, Sean Warren (1:49:18); 752, Gary Dilnot (Kenilworth Runners, 1:55:52); 813, Sandra Stokes (1:58:39); 829, Simon Radcliffe (1:59:05); 868, Nicola Todd (2:00:07); 982, Sharon Mosrup (Kenilworth Runners, 2:02:04); 983, Bina Paul (2:03:22); 1206, Frank Wals (Kenilworth Runners, 2:13:53); 1614, Anne Thomas (Kenilworth Runners, 2:36:56).
Four Kenilworth Runners took part in the Centurion multi-terrain 5 mile race on Sunday.
A strong wind and an extremely wet surface, with plenty of deep water on the footpaths around Babbs Mill Lake, made for less than perfect running conditions.
Nevertheless Debbie Streets recorded a time of 39:05 to come in fourth lady.
Selected others: Carla Fusté (41:28, PB); Tom Dable 43:31; Pauline Dable 47:27.
Spa Striders’ Paul Edwards continued his build-up to the London Marathon with a fine run in the Milton Keynes Festival of Running 20 mile.
Conditions for the race were poor with rain and wind for large parts of the race and a flooded underpass to negotiate in the first two miles.
Nevertheless, Edwards clocked a personal best time of 2hr 12min 15sec for 32nd place.
Kenilworth Runners’ Lee Harrison finished three places back in a new PB of 2:13:50.
Dave Pettifer was next to finish for Kenilworth in 154th and first V60 in a time of 2:37:08.
Ian Baynes completed the trio of Kenilworth Runners, finishing 208th in 2:41:21, also a PB.
Spa Striders’ Kelsey Wiberley, preparing for the Boston Marathon, clocked 2:24:05 for 80th overall and third female.
The race was won by Elliot Hind of Leighton Buzzard AC in 1:55:10.
The Cambridge Half Marathon was the location for two more benchmark PBs with Spa Striders’ Caroline Whitehouse (1:29:41) breaking 90 minutes and David Lithgow (1:49:08) dipping under 1:50 for the first time.
Over at the Anglesey Half-marathon, David Chantrey (1:34:18) ran a well-paced race as part of his London Marathon training campaign.
Six Kenilworth Runners took the trip to Wyre Forest for the Pulse Pursuits Dirtrun 10k.
A very wet, muddy course, with a stream crossing and some steep climbing awaited the entrants and Simon Mottershead made the tactical decision at the course split to complete the 5k race instead of the 10k option.
He was therefore shocked when he was announced at the prize giving as the second- placed senior male in 39:51.
The remaining five Kenilworth entrants continued on with the 10k route, with Stewart Underhill first MV40 in 51:52.
Selected others: Richard Broadbent (52:43): Mike Scandrett (53:00); Stef Lunn (58:12); Sheela Hobden (65:38).