10km Championships back on track as Northern Athletics join forces with North Eastern Counties AA

Michael Wilson, who set a Sunderland Harriers club record in the States.
Michael Wilson, who set a Sunderland Harriers club record in the States.

Northern Athletics are teaming up with North Eastern Counties AA to stage the Northern 10,000m Track Championship on April 24, at Monkton.

The joint championship comes after the Northern 10,000 Championship was absent from the fixture list in 2018.

A Northern athletics spokesperson said: “After its absence in 2018, and a few years of looking for a suitable home, we hope that this collaboration will be a long term arrangement for the fixture.

“Over the last few years the provision of quality 10,000m races has seen a massive decline and although NA has tried to ensure that a championship event has always been available, it hasn’t always been possible.

“The invitation from NECAA to host the event is the perfect fit. The race has already proved popular with the North East distance athletes and the introduction of an NA Championship will hopefully widen the appeal even further.

“Since launching the NA affiliation scheme (now supported by nearly 200 clubs), NA are keen to introduce new ideas and relaunch some events which have had to be shelved in the past.

“This is the ideal opportunity to host what should be a good quality 10km track race and we hope that athletes from throughout the North will take advantage of the opportunity and the welcome that is always to be found in the North East. We thank Keith Willshire and the NECAA for organising and hosting the race.”

The event is scheduled for Wednesday, April 24, at Monkton Stadium, Jarrow starting at 6pm. Online entry is available at www.race-results.co.uk

Leading the entries so far are: Houghton Harrier Lee Dover, Gateshead Harrier Conrad Franks, Blackhill Bounder Jordan Bell and Heaton’s Daniellie Smythe. Entries close on Saturday, April 20.

Sunderland Harriers, who were hit by a number of injuries to some of their leading veterans in the British Masters’ Port of Blyth 10km Road Race, came away from the Blyth Running Club event with unexpected team gold medals in the Over-35 team category.

That was possible through Steve McMahon, an Over-40, and Michael Thompson, an Over-50, stepping down to the Over-35 team category to join Michael Barker.

It was Barker who led the way in 24th (34.23). Michael Thompson took the Over-50 silver medal in 31st (34.37) and Steve McMahon was 56th (36.43

Also winning individual bronze was Jacqueline Etherington in the Over-40 age group. There was nearly 600 finishers.

Clubmate Over-40 Ian Dixon, having his first race of the year won (36.53) the Forestry 100 Running Series 10km at Hamsterley Forest. He took the race by nearly two minutes.

Michael Wilson, who is studying at New Mexico State University, has been in fine form indoors and outdoors in the States.

The Sunderland Harrier broke the club record for 400m which has stood since 1993.

He recorded 48.79 to take the record from Nicholas Watson (48.8), slicing over one second off his previous best for 400m in winning over one lap at Albuquerque, New Mexico.

His previous fastest time stood at 49.96. The Seaham man also recorded his fastest outdoors 800m (1.48.77) at Palo Alto, California, compared to his indoor time of 1.48.27.

Sunderland Strollers had the first man and woman from local clubs to finish the Manchester Marathon. They were Chris Parker and Hasina Khanom.

Results: Sunderland Strollers: Chris Parker 3.04.21, John Halligan 3.09.30, Andy Duke (V45) 3.14.59, Dan Anderson 3.19.24, Gary Dunmore (V50) 3.29.17, Hasina Khanom (W35) 3.28.39, Richard Barker (V55) 3.33.24, Andrew Dobinson (V50) 3.37. 25, Colin Armour (V45) 3.42.45, Chris Duke (V50) 3.43.18, Terry Topping (V50) 3.43,12, Darren Wood (V50) 3.39.24, Anthony Benson (V45) 3.47.13, David Ellison (V45) 4.20.20, David Coverdale (V35) 4.25.26, Sue Tate (W50) 5.00.35, Graeme Clazey (V65) 5.12.50.

Sunderland Harriers: Colleen Compson (W40) 3.51.32, Paula Goodson (W45) 4.01.52, Alyson McCourt (W50) 4.19.39, Denise Forster (W55) 4.24.11, Debra James (W50) 4.32.35, Debbie McRory (W50) 4.48.25, Albert James (V50) 5.06.58.

South Shields Harriers stage their Sand Dancer multi-terrain 10km on Sunday, from Gypsy Green Stadium at 11am.

The young athletes’ race starts at 10.30am. Entries are available on the day.

Hartlepool Burn Road Harriers host their Marina 5-mile Road Race on Sunday (10.30am).

This is a fast and flat course, starting and finishing at the Hartlepool Maritime Experience. The race entry limit is 500.

The presentation of prizes is on the PSS Wingfield Castle, approximately one hour after the last finisher. Minimum age is 16-years-old on the day

There is a £75 bonus for male and female course records (sponsored by Peart Fencing Ltd). They are: Male -23:22 (Ricky Stevenson 2009), Female -28:45 (Bernadette Taylor 2005).

Entry fees are: pre-race £10 Club, £12 Unattached. Entries on the day – add £2.