TVH ladies finished an outstanding 7th place in the National 4-stage road relays in Birmingham on Saturday. The race was won by Swansea Harriers, meaning the ladies were actually the 6th English club. They also beat South of England champions Cambridge and Coleridge and in terms of other southern teams placed only behind Bedford and County, with Aldershot Farnham and District who have dominated this event in recent years down in 8th.
On a fierce opening leg, Ann-Marie McGlynn made a tremendous debut for the club. Battling it out with the likes of Stockport’s/GB international Elle Vernon and Swansea’s Elinor Kirk, Ann-Marie blitzed round to place the team in an outstanding 3rd place. In fact Ann-Marie’s time of 14.22 was the 4th quickest of the whole day and TVH’s fastest ever around the tough Sutton Park 4.3km lap. Amazing running Ann-Marie!
Next off was Tracy Barlow, fresh back from a stint of warm weather training in preparation for her upcoming England marathon debut. Tracy smashed her previous best for the course to take a sizeable lead – yes the lead (!) in a super time of 15.05. This was the first time in TVH’s history that the ladies have led at a National road relays – talk about being in the limelight! Good work Tracy!
Leg 3 runner Kirsty Addy had not envisaged being out in the lead at a National championship in her first race back following six months of injury. Despite the injuries, Kirsty ran a great 16.08 which was only 30 seconds off her best showing what a fine athlete she is … and that cross training does actually work! Kirsty’s run placed the team in 6th and ensured they stayed well inside their target of top 10. Brave running Kirsty!
And finally, leg 4 was taken on by another fantastic debutant, mountain runner Audrey Hall. Excited by the prospect of chasing a medal and clearly not fussed by the hills, Audrey ran a positive race (15.48) and held on well for 7th spot in a hotly contested concluding leg. Well done Audrey!
This inspiring team performance shows how very close the ladies are to challenging for a National medal in future. Congratulations!
It was also very pleasing to field a full B team. The quartet of Victoria Carter, Siana Jones, Lauren Morris and Jess Bass followed the A team’s steps by placing a brilliant 7th in their category. This was TVH’s best ever B team finish too.
Victoria Carter ran an excellent opening leg (16.32) to bring the team in 49th out of 85 teams. This was a very strong run and in other years would have put Victoria in the A team. Great job Victoria! Next off was cross country captain Siana Jones who showed excellent form to clock a huge PB of 16.46 – looking good Captain Jones! Triathlete and road relay debutant Lauren Morris took on leg 3, and iron woman Jess Bass took on leg 4. Both Lauren and Jess were ‘fresh’ from recently completing Ironman’s and both ran extremely well to keep the team inside the top 50. They also ran comparatively similar times of 19.13 and 19.34 respectively. Fabulous effort ladies!
Here are our rather outstanding results:
7th Thames Valley Harriers ‘A’
Annmarie McGlynn (3) 14:22
Tracy Barlow (1) 15:05
Kirsty Addy (6) 16:08
Audrey Hall (7) 15:48
48th Thames Valley Harriers ‘B’
Victoria Carter (49) 16:32
Siana Jones (43) 16:46
Lauren Morris (52) 19:13
Jessica Bass (48) 19:34
And full results can be found here:
The ladies also feature in an England Athletics race report found here: