Telford 10K 2006

Hundreds of runners invaded the Telford Town Park and enjoyed the perfect weather conditions to take part in the Annual Telford 10k Road Race organised by Telford Athletic Club. The 23rd staging of this Christmas 10k race traditionally held just before Christmas saw a record number of finishers as 472 crossed the finishing line after the fast and flat 2 lap course along the Silkin Way.It is 37 more than the previous best set last year but almost double that of 4 years ago. Over the lasat 3 years there has been in excess of 400 finishers each year as the event organised by Dave Mansbridge, himself second in the recent Malta Running Festival,continues to grow in popularity.

As well as a large number of runners there was plenty of quality at the sharp end of the field. Phil Nicholls of Tipton, a former Thomas Telford School student, now 23 and the proud owner of a GB vest after his performance in the recent Chiba Eikeden Marathon Relay, was an impressive winner. His eye ctaching performance was featured on the UK Athletics web site on Monday as his winning time of 29.19 moved him up from 69th to 9th on the National 10k Rankings list, but still well behind Chris Davies' course record of 28.52 set in 2003. Nicholls was always in the leading group as they went through the first mile in 4.30, he started to pull away and was never headed. He went through 5k in 14.23 and for most of the race was on for a sub 29 minute run. Delighted with his performance on his return to Telford, he now has his sights set on a place in the GB team for the World Cross Country Championships to be held in Kenya in 2007.

Leeds City athlete Dave Webb and partner of Telford AC's Sian Davies repeated his second place from last year in 30.03, but 7 seconds quicker, whilst Gnosall's Tom Humphries another GB International was 3rd in 30.06. Eryri's Alun Vaughan and Gwyn Owen, first and second in the Bangor North Wales Cross Country League were 9th and 10th in 31.35 and 31.39 with former Shrewsbury School Student Oliver Mott, now representing Bristol University was 11th in 31.54. Telford Ac's Will Joyce was the first runner from a Shropshire club to finish in 16 th in 33.10, 16 seconds quicker and 3 places lower than last year. Oswestry's Ollie Blake was 17th in 33.29, a staggering 90 seconds quicker than last year, whilst Telford's British Over 50's champion Greg Wilson, 7th in last week's Mortimer Forest Race was 18th, first over 50 in 33.34. Chris Bagshaw was the next Shropshire runner home in 20th, 34.04. Telford AC's, Tony Power made an amazing return to race action after a break of over 12 months, running 34.09 for 21st, second over 45 and could easily make an impact on national scale when he turns 50 in May.

Kevin Francis led the Shrewsbury contingent home in 43rd,36.02, just 2 seconds ahead of team mate Tim Smith. Tim Beckett from Mullers, Market Drayton was 47th, 36.23 whilst Stephen Hatton led the Shropshire Shufflers home in 57th, 36.53 just ahead of the fisrt Newport runner Robin Guy 59th in 37.03. Nick Thomas was the first Telford Harrier home in 71st,37.32 and Russell Mapp led the Ludlow Runners home in 88th 39.41.

Malcolm Dawes from Ketley was the first over 55 just days before he becomes 60, finishing 82nd overall in 39.00, just 3 seconds ahead of the first over 60 Bob Statham of Coventry. Roger Sandland from Cardington was the first over 65 in 46.23, whilst Ludlow's Tony Hewson was the first over 70 in 54.04.

Telford AC's Kim Green, from Sutton Hill, won the most exciting race of the day, the womens race by just 2 seconds crossing the line in a new personal best of 35.00,54 seconds faster than when she finished 4th last year. Kim and second placed Beth Eburne from Hinckley Running Club, were together throughout the race going through 5 k in 17.14. Kim pulled away over the final 500m to slice a massive 23 seconds from her previous best set just weeks ago whilst representing the Midland Counties, finishing 4th in the Leeds 10k. Kim now targets the Shropshire Cross Country Championships at Lilleshall in January before setting her sights on London Marathon training having been accepted into the elite womens race this year.

Alex Gostling from Leeds City Athletic Club was third, as last year in 35.12 whilst Norwich's Olivia Walwyn was 4th in 35.21, as just 21 seconds separated the first 4 women home.Telford Ac's new recruit Hayley Jennings was 5th in 36.40 whilst her team mate Sian Davies 7th in 36.53 who has just returned from an international race in Bahrain. Another Telford AC runner Julie Kirby was the first over 35, 8th overall in 37.49, with Shrewsbury AC's talented Clare Day 10th in 39.32. Cheralyn Evans of Telford Ac was the first over 45 in 40.58 with Gill Pugh 15th in 42.12. Lisa Watkins was the first Telford harrier home in 21st 45.14, with Wrekin Road Runners Charlotte Allen 22nd in 45.20. Newport's Pauline Newton was the leading over to finish in 35th 47.26.Sam Leigh led home the Shropshire Shufflers in 36th 48.10.

Paul Sanderson

17-Dec-06 Telford 10K Results