North Wales’ male and female athletic squads celebrated joint success at the Inter-County virtual challenge match last weekend.
The event was part of the Stone 10k race, with their star runner Ted Flynn winning the event in a very fast time to secure a unique treble result.
The race, including the annual team challenges, are normally staged on a flat two-lap course through Stone in Staffordshire, but this year it had to be changed to a virtual run due to the pandemic, with entrants required to complete a similar course closer to home.
Some 126 top runners took part in the event, billed as the St Michael’s road race, which raised funds for the junior school, and a variety of other local causes.
Ted led the way home for the men’s team, and overall, winning the main race in a magnificent time of just 31 mins 50 secs.
He finished 23 seconds ahead of City of Stoke AC rivals, Ross Connor, 2nd in 32.13, and Chris Morgan 3rd in 32.30.
Simon Cole and Martin Green also ran well for the NW men’s team and both collected prestigious first place, age category wins.
Team manager Paul Brooks from the North Wales Regional Athletics Council was delighted by the results and said: “I can confirm that the North Wales men’s team won by 17 pts to Staffs 20, and the women’s team also won on countback.
“Eden O’Dea was our first female runner. She is just 17-years old, and this girl is going to be big. Ted Flynn is another one in great shape, and he may dip under 31 minutes next year.”
The winning NW male team results included: 1st place overall, and 1st team counter, Ted Flynn (Ellesmere Port), 31.50; 5th Dave Bennett (Ellesmere Port AC) 2nd M40 cat, 32.43; 6th Simon Cole (GOG Triathlon), 1st M35, 32.43; 8th Steven Hayes (Dee Striders), 3rd M40, 33.43; 9th Martin Green (NWRRC), 1st M45, 34.18; and 11th Dilwyn Powell-Jones (Eryri Harriers) 35.43.
For the ladies, promising teenager Eden O’Dea, was the first female team counter, and the talented North Wales squad just managed to snatch the team title on countback after they finished level on 18 points with keen rivals Staffs. The lowest scoring team eventually being declared the victors.
Officials say they used the last scoring finisher time to decide the outcome, and former NWRRC runner Gemma Moore helped secure the win in 7th place, and she finished just 4 seconds ahead of Trentham RC (Staffs) rival runner Joanne Stanfield.
The winning NW female team results included: 15th overall Eden O’Dea, and 2nd female (Deeside AC), 37.07; 18th Amie Bagnall 3rd female (Prestatyn AC), 38.17; 27th Jen Adams, 6th female (Buckley AC), and age category winner, 39.57; 28th Gemma Moore (Eryri Harriers) 7th female, and 2nd in her age cat, 40.22; 36th Carla Green (NWRRC) 11th female, and 3rd in her age cat, 41.50; and finally, 43rd Andrea Rowlands, 43.56.
Date change for Spanish race challenge
North Wales Road Runners have had to change the date of their friendly encounter with the Spanish Fondistes Penedes Running Club in Vilafranca, near Barcelona, to avoid a potential clash with the Welsh Athletics, NW relay, scheduled for the same weekend.
The proposed plan is to include two representatives from each club, competing as a team of four, and roughly based on similar times over a 5k distance.
This is a fun competition, with all runs to be completed on a virtual basis, and times submitted between 2nd to 6th December.