Speedy Steve takes gold

ILFORD AC walkers returned from Sunday s Essex County AAA Indoor Championships with a clutch of medals. Pride of place at the Lee Valley Arena in Ponders End went to Steve Uttley (right), who won the one-mile walk gold medal, clocking seven minutes and 5

ILFORD AC walkers returned from Sunday's Essex County AAA Indoor Championships with a clutch of medals.

Pride of place at the Lee Valley Arena in Ponders End went to Steve Uttley (right), who won the one-mile walk gold medal, clocking seven minutes and 54 seconds.

Dependable Dave Sharpe - an indoor regular - repeated his silver medal-winning position of a year ago on the same track, as he pounded out a confident 9.09.

Walking as a guest, and therefore not in contention for medals, Francisco Reis was in sparkling form to clock 7.40.


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In the girls' under-17 event, Helen Croft knocked a massive 40 seconds off her personal best to strike gold in 12.29.

ILFORD AC men's team missed out on a bronze medal, after finishing fourth at the Great Bentley Half-marathon on Sunday.

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The three combined scores gained by Malcolm Muir (fourth, one hour 13 minutes and four seconds), Terry Knightly (27th, 1:18:20) and Iain MacDonald (35th, 1:19:24) were only four points away from third place.

The nine additional male runners representing the team on the day were Kevin Newell (44th), Darren Bottrill (83rd), Ben Jones (88th), Chris Togwell (297th), Stephen Parker (334th) and Martin Clarke (404th).

Bree Nordin (185th) was the first of the Ilford Women's team to finish with a time of 1:33:15.

Nicola Hopkinson (356th), Sally Gilliam (440th) rounded out the team. Individual scorer Carol Muir placed 786th.

The Great Bentley Running Club hosted the race and incorporated this year's Essex Half-marathon Championship into the event, further preparing Ilford runners for the upcoming 2010 London Marathon.

Last week, six male runners returned to Parliment Hill in Hamstead Heath to compete in the Southern Cross Country Championships.

The notorious uphill start attracted Malcolm Muir (92nd), Darren Bottrill (311th), Kevin Newell (363rd), Neil Crisp (388th), Robert Attree (440th) and Matthew Maple (528th).

The nine-mile senior men's race attracted nearly 1,000 competitors to the field, with at least 1,500 other entrants in various male and female categories.

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