THERE was certainly a feel of autumn in the air for the 700 or so runners who took part in the annual Tynedale 10-mile race from Hexham to Ovingham on Sunday.
Fortunately, however, the blustery conditions were largely advantageous, with the fresh westerly wind helping push competitors along the scenic route by the banks of the Tyne.
Currently in fine form after recent victories this summer in both the Morpeth 10k and the Exhibition Park 5k, Tadele Geremew of Elswick won the men’s race in a time of 50m5s, with Michael Crawley of Corstorphine AC in second place in 52m50s.
They were followed home in third place by Graeme Taylor of Morpeth Harriers in a time of 52m21s.
A member of Morpeth’s victorious National Cross Country squad this year, Taylor showed that he is already in good shape as the new cross-country season looms.
Taylor was also awarded a silver medal in the accompanying North East 10-mile championship, with Geremew not qualifying for this competition.
Not far behind, Morpeth’s Tom Straughan and Fergus Bates had a personal tussle that lasted most of the race, with Straughan finally coming out on top.
Straughan finished in 14th place in a time of 55m 57s with Bates some five places behind, 19th in 56m54s.
Bates had the satisfaction, however, of being first in the North East Veterans Athletics Association Championships, for which the race also acted as host.
The team of Taylor, Straughan and Bates finished narrow runners-up in the men’s team competition to a victorious Wallsend Harriers.
In their first competitive 10-mile race, teenagers Sam Hancox and Matthew Boyle were delighted with their placings of 33 (59m15s) and 42 (1h 13s) respectively. Not far behind, Sam’s dad Rob continued his fine run of form in what is proving to be very much a golden year for him by running yet another pb to finish 58 in 1h 1m 56s.
Jane Blackett was Morpeth’s only competitor in a women’s race won by Shone Fletcher of Richmond and Zetland AC in a time of 1 hour and 12 seconds.
Having recently started working with Harriers coach Chris Waugh, Blackett was delighted to knock more than six minutes off her own pb when finishing in a time of 1h 23m 22s.
Other Morpeth finishers included Hermes Carlyon, another completing his first ever 10-mile race, 96th in 1h 5m 41s; Mark Snowball, 134th in 1h 8m 8s; Peter Scaife, 191st in 1h 11m 35s; James McFetrich, 239th in 1h 14m 12s; and Eric Adams, 270th in 1h 15m 11s.
MORPETH Harriers were in action at the 19th Tartan Games at Gateshead International Stadium.
Sean O’Hara making his debut over the 300m distance easily won his heat in 39.43s and was narrowly beaten in the final (38.70s).
In the same event William Kelly improved his pb twice finishing fifth in his heat (41.93s and again finishing fifth in the final (41.65s).
First across the line was Luke Foreman of Gateshead (38.69). Unfortunately on the day entries meant this race was divided into heats rather than the advertised straight final.
Natalie Price finished third in the U13 Girls 200m final in 29.32s after winning her heat in 29.41s. She had earlier ran the 100m finishing second in her heat (14.36s).
Jack Balmbro also finished third in both the U13 Boys 100m and 200m finals.
In the 100m he recorded 13.21s, after clocking a pb time of 13.16s when finishing third in his heat.
His time in the 200m final was 27.80s, after again setting a pb of 27.50s in his heat, when finishing third.
Both events were won by Gateshead’s Joseph Purvis who clocked 12.34s in the 100m and a record breaking 25.61s in the 200m.
Rhiannon Hedley finished fourth in the U11 600m clocking 2m 2.5s behind the record breaking run of Natasha Stephenson of Chester-le-Street (1m49.0s).
In the Senior 1500m races, Josie Cram finished third in 4m55.86s, behind Durham’s Chloe Price (4:33.75). Brother Marcus was second in the Mens’ race clocking 4m12.80s behind Adam Mitchell of Middlesbrough Mandale (4:09.06).
On the field, Ryan Green continued his high jump campaign finishing second in the U17 category clearing 1.80m behind Jarrow’s Anthony Hogg (1.85m).
Elliott Moore finished fourth in the U15 shot with a throw of 9.68m.
Claire Reid finished second in the Senior womens’ shot throwing 10.04s, behind Jarrow’s Kathryn Bulmer (11.56m). She also finished second in the Hammer (30.67m).
KATHRYN Foley returned to competition to take second place in the Womens’ section at Saturday’s South Shields Park Run.
She clocked 20m4s behind Suzanne Gutcher of South Shields (19:46).
Richard Driscoll finished 58th in the Newcastle event clocking 21m23s behind Gateshead’s James Cripwell (16:44).
AT the Tynedale Hospice Evening of 800m Races at Wentworth Sports Centre, Hexham, Laura Weightman returned to competition after her disappointment at the Moscow World Championships.
She finished second in the B race with a time of 2m4.89s, behind Tynedale’s Phil Thompson (2:03.22).
Ryan Green returned to 800m racing finishing second in the A race. His time was 1m57.56s, behind Tynedale’s Jonathan Currie (1:56.52). Alistair MacDonald finished fourth in the D race (2:20.74) and was the fastest Over 50 athlete.
MORPETH Harriers teenagers led the way at the Watergate 5k and 2k Trail Races held last Thursday evening round the paths of the Watergate Country Park in Gateshead.
First up was Jacob Hopkins who led confidently from gun to tape in the Juniors 2k race, winning in a time of 7m5s
His victory was all the more pleasing as he bettered his runners-up place last year.
It was the turn of U17 athletes Elliot Kelly and Alison Brown in the Seniors 5k, both fresh from receiving recent GCSE results, and they both performed strongly to win their respective categories.
Kelly in fact was in 10th place overall in the race, finishing in a time of 17m30s, and Brown sixth female overall in a time of 20m38s.
Next home for Morpeth was Peter Scaife, 66th in 20m46s and just catching Lorna Macdonald, seventh female home in 20m56s, in the last kilometre. Lorna’s younger sister, Catriona, also completed the race in a time of 25m31s.
In his first competitive outing for some time, following recent injuries, it was also good to see Archie Jenkins finish in 100th place and fourth Over 60 in a time of 22m 19s.