Snow adds to the parkrun excitement


A fresh dusting of snow greeted 90 intrepid runners and walkers on Saturday for the 19th instalment of Rushmere parkrun.

Despite the early morning precipitation causing the forest trails to be stickier underfoot than expected, 25 participants recorded their best-ever times on the undulating two-lap circuit of Rushmere Country Park.

Amongst the big improvers in the women’s field was Pamela Brown, who shaved more than three minutes off her best time to finish the 5k course in 37 minutes 12 seconds. Junior runner Isla Atkinson reduced her previous mark by a similar margin to stop the clock at 38:10.

Sian Lane (35:08), Hazel Cockerill (33:06) and Jacqueline Hart (31:28) also made sizeable improvements on their previous times.

Becky Davies recorded her fourth consecutive PB, which has seen her improve from 30:19 to 26:44.

Malcolm Kidby slashed more than a minute off his previous best to post 30:08, while Paul Thomas broke the magical 30-minute mark for the first time in 29:45.

Other improvers included Andy Griggs (28:15), Marcus Mitchinson (25:48) and Henry Garthwaite (25:45). In the junior boys, Harry Gadsby (24:39) and Thomas Hirst-Mitchell (24:09) both recorded new course bests.

Not to be outdone, Rich Holt achieved his fifth consecutive personal best, finishing in 28:56. Gary Armstrong also posted his fifth PB on the trot, which has seen his times fall from 28:41 to 26:47 since January.

At the front of the field, Paul Williamson set the pace overall in 19:05, ahead of debutant Piers Vallance in 19:29 and Sean Byrne in 22:35.

First-timer Claire Vallance was the fastest woman and fourth overall in 22:42, with Becky Davies second in 26:44 and Lucy McGroatry third in 26:52.

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