Weekend road double-header sees HRC shine


A busy weekend of racing saw Heanor RC in road and track action at events across the Midlands.

The club held its own among quality opposition as the sole representative from Derbyshire at the ERRA National 12 Stage Road Relays on Saturday.

Following a top-10 finish at the regional championships at the same Sutton Park venue earlier in the month, an understrength side still posted a respectable 56th-place finish among the 64-strong field.

Running alternate long and short stages of 5.4 and 3.1 miles in distance, Stuart King was the club’s standout performer over the longer course.

Stuart led the team out on the opening leg and came home 29th, the club’s highest position of the day. His time of 28.09 was also four seconds quicker than over the same distance two weeks ago.

The fastest short stage time for the club came from Tuesday night’s BDL winner, Joe Rainsford. Joe, using the race as a leg stretcher ahead of his PB assault at the Derby 10k the next day, posted a time of 17.06.

Full results HERE

In ideal springtime sunshine at the Derby 10k, there were personal bests galore among the impressive Heanor RC contingent.

The fast route, which starts outside the iPro Stadium before heading out towards the city centre and finishing back inside the football ground, saw a sparkling course record set by race winner Ben Connor (28.59).

Lisa Palmer-Blount shined as she tasted victory in the women’s race for the first time in 11 years.

Following second-place finishes in 2014 and 2010, Lisa (36.02) recorded her fastest time at her hometown event and took top-spot ahead of Derby AC’s Rachel Olivant (36.43).

The speedy front-running at the head of the 5,000-strong field rubbed off on the rest of the runners. Heanor RC’s Joe Rainsford and Matt Bickerstaff both finished inside the top-10 and improved their personal bests.

Joe (31.19) took almost 20 seconds off his previous best from the same race last year while Matt (31.53) dipped inside 32 minutes for the first time.

In addition, there were six further personal bests from Heanor RC members. Ben Rhodes (33.28), on his club debut, Ryan Ball (38.47), Ian Salt (43.44), Nikki Dunbar (57.59), Paul Bell (48.42) and John Flint (41.27) all revised their previous bests.

Other notable runs came from the returning Lee Perkins (38.07) and Jill Burke (40.49), who ran her quickest 10k time since 2012.

Full results HERE

Ahead of the London Mini Marathon this weekend, Lily Winfield continued her fine transition from the mud to the track with a 7th-place finish over 800m at the British Milers Club meet in Birmingham.

Lily, who will be aiming high in the capital on Sunday, ran 2:20.37 to follow up the PB (2:18.5) and English Schools qualifying standard she achieved last week at Loughborough.

Full results HERE