Once again runners in the Burton and District Summer League had hot weather to contend with at the annual Gate Gallop; hosted by Peel Road Runners at the Anker Valley Sports Complex.
Tamworth AC were light on numbers with Sylvain Létendart and Dave Williams both out of contention.
The 10km off-road race started with Ben Evans tucking in behind the lead runner for the opening kilometres. As the race progressed the front three switched around with Alan Thomas of South Derbyshire Road Runners making a strong push into the lead. Evans followed, but despite his best efforts, couldn’t close the gap and had to settle for second place with a time of 37:06.
Howard Bush, winner of the Gate Gallop in 2016, was next in for Tamworth AC in tenth place with 40:13.
Charlotte Bush continued her impressive run of success in this event, to once again win the U20 Ladies category with 45:53; a solid improvement on her 2017 time despite the heat.
Charlotte said after the race “Given the hot conditions and the tough terrain, I aimed to pace the first 5k in preparation for the inclines in the second half of the race, I really had to dig in hard the last few kilometres to maintain my position, but feel like on the day that was the best time I could have achieved.”
After making a very strong start Derek Bolton finished the race in 46:10, and Lisa Stretton came home with a time of 52:15.
Prior to the main event, some of the club’s younger athletes were in action in the 4.4km Fun Run. James Stretton continued his promising season with another impressive win, crossing the line in a time of 18:06. Charlotte Perry was first girl with a time of 19:46, followed by her sister Sophie in second with 21:19. Katie Stretton made it an all green and white top 3 for the girls, crossing the line in 23:09, and Lottie Evans, the club’s youngest runner on the day completed the line-up as fifth placed girl with 27:14.
A smiling James said after his win, “I am very happy to have won on a very hot day! I made a good start and led the field but soon realised I would be challenged by a senior man from another club. I managed to stick with him for most of the race but with 300m to go I decided to push past him and accelerate to the finish. Luckily for me he wasn’t able to respond and I won with a course PB.”
Next up for Tamworth AC in the Burton and District Summer League is the Worthington 5 Mile on Tuesday 10th July 2018. A one-mile Fun Run for children starts at 7:00 PM, followed by the main race at 7:30 PM.