Eastleigh’s 28th annual 10k Road Race has been won in fine style by Rob Mullet despite near freezing conditions. The 25 year old runner completed the course yesterday (Sunday March 24) in a scorching 29.38 – just five seconds shy of his 2011 recorded personal best of 29.33 for a 10k race. It was also the fastest time for at least the last five years of the popular event though still a minute a drift of the course record of 28:39 set by Glynn Tromans exactly a decade ago.
Mullet, a Lewes Butler University athlete, had already opened a sizeable lead by the halfway point and came down the Fleming Park home straight almost a minute ahead of Southend’s Adam Hickey who crossed the line at 30.40. There was then another 45 seconds back to Simon Plummer of City of Salisbury A & R.C who finished at 31.05 – an improvement on his previous time of 31.57 and 12th placing here last year.
The women’s race was won by Cassie Thorpe of City of Portsmouth A.C who came in 34:31 and 43rd overall – besting her 2011 performance in this race of 35.42 and 74th overall.
Thorpe was closely followed by Worthing Harrier Emma Taylor-Gooby at 34:34 while Winchester A.C’s Lucy Elliot was the third female runner home, finishing not only third in the Women’s race, but also an inspiring first in the Women’s Over 45 category.
This year’s race was run slightly earlier than usual. The fixture normally set for the last Sunday in March usually coincides with the start of British Summer Time but as Easter Sunday falls on the same day this year it was brought forward, so although the competitors didn’t have to contend with an hour’s less sleep they experienced somewhat chillier weather with a recorded wind-chill factor as low as -3⁰ around the course. Runners approaching the 6k water station (manned this year by cadets of 11 (Eastleigh) Platoon ACF) who hastily snatched at the proffered cups found themselves doused by ice-cold water.
The unseasonal weather did not deter the crowds though, who still turned out in their thousands to cheer the runners on, while stewards and Eastleigh Police worked to keep traffic disruption to a minimum.
Over 2,600 entries were received though not everyone showed up on the day- only 2,081 runners were recorded as crossing the finish line. An impressive 1,748 runners managed to complete the course in under an hour – this included William Davies of Winchester A.C who won the over 80 category in 58:43.
Fastest female veteran was Ann Bruce-low of Hardley Harriers who finished 1:17:54.
Last recorded runner came home at 1:33:52 which shows that the race appeals to a wide range of abilities.
The Mayor and Mayoress Cllrs Rupert and Karen Kyrle saw the runners off on Passfield Avenue and were at the finish to applaud them as they crossed the line – proceeds will go towards this year’s Mayor’s Charity Appeal.
The race, organised by Eastleigh Running club with the help of local volunteers continues to go from strength to strength – a good example of co operation between the council, local business sponsors and community organisations.
More information, full results and more stats then you can shake a sweaty running sock at can be found on Eastleigh Running Clubs excellent website here!
Well done to all those who took part!