Great turnout for charity

CLOSE to 150 runners were in competition as Ilford Athletic Club hosted a 5k charity race at Valentines Park on Sunday. Ilford AC young stars shone as Iain MacDonald, 20, dipped under 18 minutes with 17.47 for ninth place, closely followed by under-15 tr

CLOSE to 150 runners were in competition as Ilford Athletic Club hosted a 5k charity race at Valentines Park on Sunday.

Ilford AC young stars shone as Iain MacDonald, 20, dipped under 18 minutes with 17.47 for ninth place, closely followed by under-15 training partner Alex Richards, who ran an excellent 18 minutes dead for 12th place.

Terry Knightley and Matt Maple were engaged in a battle just behind with Knightley coming through in 18.22 to Maple's 18.26.

Frank McGowan made his debut for the club and celebrated the occasion with a fine run of 18.31, while Gary Floate was sixth man home, clocking 18.40.


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Meanwhile, Chris Togwell produced a very good run in the over-50s with his 20.05, just bettering fellow age-grouper Andy Catton's 20.19.

At the sharp end of the race, Ryan Prout and Crispian Bloomfield were locked together for most of the first lap, before Prout's strength pulled him clear to bring him home in 16.29, with Bloomfield 16 seconds adrift.

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In the ladies' race, it was the Ilford middle-distance youngsters who caught the eye, with sisters Jenni Crisp (23.09) and Natalie Crisp (23.56), plus Laura Swords (23.38) all recording personal bests in close attendance with veteran Nicola Hopkinson (23.25).

Pam Jones ran 25.22 to take the women's over-55 prize, running the first lap in the company of granddaughter Bronwen who eased away from her during the second lap to finish with 25.07.

Other Ilford results were: Kevin Newell 18.50, Keith Ennis 19.20, Ben Jones 19.23, Rohan Alexander 19.34, Neil Crisp 20.53, Duncan Turner 22.05, Chris Evans 24.06, Bill Green 25.00, Satha Alaganandasundaram 25.47, Claire Harrison 26.33, Carol Muir 26.43, Robin Davis, 26.55, Sue Lee 27.44, Gerry Pells 28.22, Ray Rawlinson (leading a blind runner around) 29.12, Dave Sharpe (racewalking) 30.29, Michael Hinton (racewalking) 30.57, Meredith Floate 32.06, Amarjeet Matharu 32.07, Catherine Green 34.40.

Two Ilford youngsters have also been in action at the Cancer Research 5k event. Olivia and Mia Thomas, members of "the Rascals Group", ran some very good age times. Olivia, 9, finished in 29.30, while her seven-year-old sister, Mia, managed a remarkable 27.20.

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