Beach Runners well represented in London

On a beautiful day for running 12 Beach Runners went down to Parliament Hills in London for the National Cross Country races where there were over 8,000 competitors in varying age categories.

The course was in good condition but by the time it got to both the senior female and male races in some parts the mud was pretty deep and wet. The men's race was over 12km and had 1,688 finishers. Chris Merrylees came an excellent 261st in 42:3 while Robbie Britton clocked 46:15 and was 569th. Colin Stark, John Christopher and Eddie Carman ran in 47:53, 49:15 and 60:48 to come 699th, 814th and 1,524th respectively. Sadly Jamie Seamark had to pull out 10 minutes in after injuring his foot in the deep mud.

The women's race was over 8km, with 650 finishers. Lucy Collyer was 404th in 39:21 followed two minutes later by Ellen Similon in 468th place followed by Shelley Burton in 45:53.

With similar weather conditions in Cromer, Carmine De Grandis and Vinnie Purdy ran the Winter Poppyline ultra marathon of 52.7 miles. This is a cross country race with self navigation via route descriptions that started in Cromer to North Walsham then Dilham Canal to Coltishall, along Bure Valley Railway to Buxton Village Hall into Aylsham, onto Blickling Hall and Hanworth before heading back to Cromer in the dark via Felbrigg Hall. Vinnie finished in an amazing second place in 9-32 and Carmine in 11-22.

In the third Mousehold Cross Country race Steve Jones was first in the 40-44 group, Darren Neale was third in the Seniors and wife Charlotte was first female senior.