ANOTHER weekend of amazing performance by Dursley Running Club and DRC-Tri athletes, writes David Durden.

The weekend started with parkrun twenty-three of the twenty-nine running under the moniker of DRC at Wotton.

At Kingsway, Graeme Hawkins ran the fastest parkrun and highest age grading of the weekend, 22:27 and 79% in the M70 category.

Meanwhile, Jackie Gilmour, a few percentage points off him at 74%, ran the fastest parkrun for DRC’s women of 25:41. There were two-course bests, Tel Cother 28:02 and Junior Lila Heath 31:53, both at Wotton.

Dan Anderson is focusing on the road this season, and he took part in the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park May 10K on Saturday. He won the event recording a time of 34:50, the fastest 10K a DRC runner has achieved for a number of years. From the fastest to the furthest, Saturday night and Sunday morning saw Graham Wilkes completing of the Isle of Wight Ultra 54km and finished in 12 hours 1 minute and 39 seconds.

Sunday saw another plethora of runners. Kate Browning, inspired by the DRC’s Virgin London Marathon athletes put herself on the road. Taking herself to the North Dorset Village Marathon finishing in 76th position, 8th woman and first in the F45-49 category, with a time of 03:47:58, she qualified good for age for VLM this was approximately Kate’s 95th marathon.

Southampton saw the Dursley duo of Deb Peake and David Saunders running the 26.2 miles with Dave Ashford the half. Peake and Saunders were level pegging at the halfway mark coming through at 2:12:43 and 02:13:48 respectively.

Dave Symonds was slightly quicker finishing the half in 02:08:23, Peake kept ploughing her furrow and raced steadily, experiencing, as most marathon runners do, a drop off in pace towards the end, but finished in a great time of 04:39.

Dave Saunders struggled after mile 18 working hard to finish in over 5 hours; the upside was that David, a die hard Southampton FC fan got to run with Matt Le Tissier for a bit.

Meanwhile, in Wales Nigel Sankey, Simon Jones, Damain Lai and Andrew Eades all had some idea of what was in store, whilst training partners Louise Biddell and Janet Matthews where waiting to find out. Jones and Sankey led the DRC off and were hitting consistent paces over the first half, the flat nature of the course assisting getting into a groove, this applied to all the DRC runners. Jones just kept going and whilst his pace dropped back over the last three miles he pushed on and finished very strongly to record an absolutely brilliant road marathon debut of 03:16.

DRC had team Matthews/Biddell/Eades supporting each other around the course. Eades was raising money for the Great Western Air Ambulance and had been struggling with knee condition for some while, limiting his ability to train

Quentin Somerset was doing his best to catch up over the final miles, but he could not get back to them, but he was happy to notch up another marathon on his way to the 100 mark. Sankey in the meantime had come home in 03:42, and showed his mettle in keeping on going despite the fact things were not going his way. He was just ahead of Lai who had run an incredible 3 marathons since April, running a course best at Newport.

Results: North Dorset Village Marathon: Kate Browning , 03:47:58, 76th, (1st F45-49)

Southampton: Deb Peake, 04:39:26, 760th , (67th F40-44); David Saunders , 05:14:26, 938th , (2nd M70). Newport: Simon Jones , 03:16:32, 216th , (42nd M40-44); Nigel Sankey , 03:42:03, 551st, (100th M35-39); Damian Lai, 03:45:30, 638th , (125th M40-44); Janet Matthews, 04:39:52, 1526th, (67th F40-44); Louise Biddell, 04:39:52, 1528th , (65th F35-39); Andrew Eades , 04:39:54, 1530th, (209th M35-39); Quentin Somerset, 04:40:56, 1547th, (166th M45-49);

Sunday saw the Tri Team take a quintet to Lydney and a duo at Tewkesbury Sprint Tri.

Michell Ball finished in 1:36:25, 3rd in age cat and 14th female.

Sam Martin finished 7th female in 01:26.

In Lydney, Leigh Allen was first in age group and Louise Saum and Leanna Parry 5th and 6th in age group and both top ten overall. Andrew Oborne came 9th in age group, making up a lot of places with a strong bike leg.

Nine DRC athletes ran the Simply Health Great Bristol 10K with at least four personal bests achieved. Despite being fatigued from his recent marathon effort, Mark Sprigings managed to bring down his PB at 10k to 38:21.

Cath Hall and Caroline Easthope were rewarded for the hard work they have put in Easthope ran her 5th personal best in a row and Hall managed a 14 minute personal best.

Annie Hidden, clearly benefitting from her structured training with DRC coaches, ran a 6 minute personal best.

Results: Mark Sprigings, 38:21, 146th; Nick Pollard, 43:01, 646th; Chad Staddon, 45:48, 1205th; Caroline Easthope, 55:09, 4195th; Sue Carter, 58:05, 5355th; Julie Gowing , 59:47, 6030th; Annie Hidden, 01:02:43, 6969th; Emily Harding, 01:18:53, 9623rd; Catherine Hall, 01:18:53, 9624th