Although it was a nice, dry evening, there was a cold wind that was particularly strong over the Town Moor hills. This made the spring handicap a challenge for runners, but even more of one for the marshals!
Once again we were augmented by a number of guests, including our friends from Active Newcastle. It was one of the Active Newcastle girls, Cairin Ni Loinn, who romped home well ahead of the field. Cairin had fooled the handicapper by improving massively since running with us in January, as she ran an impressive 1:24 per mile faster – this despite walking for part of the uphill stretches. Well done, but I’ll get you next time!
First Claremonter home, and thus the winner of the handicap trophy, was Serpil Bulut. Serpil was the only one to get close to Cairin and was nearly 2m 30s ahead of Hazel Juggins in 3rd place. Hazel therefore got the Claremont silver medal with David Lydall completing the podium. Serpil has made a habit of beating the handicap as this follows her win in the NOTAN Grand Prix. It shows just how her running has improved since her struggles with injury over the winter.
For once, the knockout cup final was between all 4 qualifiers and it was fairly close with less than a minute between 1st and 4th. Rachel Measor (née Stout) triumphed ahead of Anthony Liddle and Lucy Dunbar with defending champion Janet Palmer in 4th. Lucy will have another shot at glory in the summer final, when she will be joined by Cath Robson, Kat Truong and Dave Kear.
Anthony was fastest runner on the night in 18:52 followed by Roberto “papà” Marzo (19:19) and John Lea-Wilson (19:59). Fastest lady was Catherine Young (20:52) with Sarah Kerr (21:27) and Lucy Dunbar (22:26) completing the 1-2-3.
Thanks to Terry and his team of marshals and officials, your help is much appreciated.