Horsham based Stawell Amateur Athletic Club runner Gary Howden stormed home over the closing stages of last Saturday’s 6.5km David O Jones Mitre 10 handicap, securing his first win with the club for several seasons.
Chasing second placed runner Nathaniel Warren for most of the race, Howden’s liking for tough conditions was evident as he out ran the 23 strong senior field. He timed his run perfectly, passing Warren in the last kilometer to finish his best run for the year in a time of 24 minutes 42 seconds.
Warren finished only 6 seconds behind with Suzie Ellis a further 34 seconds back in third place.
Back marker Jade Merrett recorded the fastest race time of 23 minutes 18 seconds, while Suzie Ellis was the fastest female in a time of 26 minutes and 42 seconds.
With the race on for Aggregate points, Nathaniel Warren moved ten points clear of Owen Roper, after a disappointed Roper missed the start. Roper somehow mistimed his warm up and even after a desperate sprint to the line, set off a good 20 seconds behind his handicap mark, but still managed to finish fourth.
Howden’s win also moved him to within 12 points of Warren and with three runs left for the season the Aggregate is still wide open.
In the junior 4000 metre handicap Nat Watson was pushed all the way by back marker Daniel Faravoni. Watson just hung on to cross the line first in a time of 15 minutes 35 seconds, 12 seconds ahead of the fast finishing Faravoni. Emily Parnaby was third.
Faravoni was the fastest junior boy in a time of 15 minutes and 2 seconds. Emily Parnaby was the quickest junior girl in a time of 18 minutes and 22 seconds.
Georgia Barnett upstaged big sister Elly to comfortably win the sub-junior 1500 metre handicap. Georgia won in a time 7 minutes 57 seconds, 20 seconds clear of second placed Elly Barnett. Somer Darnell was a further 46 seconds back in third place.
Elly Barnett was the fastest sub-junior in a time of 6 minutes 47 seconds. Fastest sub-junior boy was Ky Merrett in 13 minute 19 seconds.