Darlington 10k rocked by strong winds – as Sunderland Harriers finish runners-up to top team Durham City

Michael Thompson was the first over-45 in the Darlington 10k
Michael Thompson was the first over-45 in the Darlington 10k
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Times were slowed by strong winds in yesterday’s Darlington 10k, with the result that the course records were not threatened by the winners in the town centre race.

Both Elswick Harrier Tadele Geremew (31min 26sec) and surprise entrant Gemma Steel (33.47) of Hallamshire were way outside the marks established by Yared Hagos (30.06 in 2011) and Kate Avery (33.08 in 2014).

The race was a battle between Ethiopian Geremew and Eritrean Abraham Tewelde. of Saltwell Harriers, with the former winning by four seconds in an exciting finish.

British international Steel was looking for a fast time in preparation for the Great North Run next month, but found the conditions just too tough to handle.

But she still finished well ahead of Durham’s Rosie Smith, who filled second place in 35.05.

Third place went to Mary Ferrier of Gateshead Harriers (37.44) and, with another fine run, Sunderland Harrier Alice Smith finished fourth (38.05).

This was the first time that the Penshaw athlete had dipped below 40 minutes and, being surrounded by men during her tour of Darlington, she found the wind no problem.

Behind her in the Sunderland team, who are awaiting for confirmation to see if they are among the team prizes, were Rachael Moore with 43.46 and Vicky Younger (44.41), who also recorded personal bests.

The Sunderland senior men’s team finished second to Durham in the team competition, with Tyne Bridge third.

Marc Fenwick (Tyne Bridge), who finished third in 31.55, and Dan Jenkin (Durham) fourth (32.05) led their teams home.

Sunderland Harriers saw Kevin Jeffress return to form in ninth place (33.06) and he was followed by Steve McMahon 13th (33.41) and Ian Dixon second over-40 in 15th (33.48) to complete the team scoring.

Andy Powell was next home in 21st (34.23), while Micky Thompson finished one place behind his clubmate for first in the over-45 category (34.41), Adam Ridley was 77th (37.41) and Paul Redman was 10th over-50 in 101st (38.56).

Mike Hobson was first Sunderland Stroller in 100th (38.44), followed by V45 Andrew Duke in 104th (38.57) and V45 Chris Duke in 197th (42.02).

Sunderland Stroller John Cook was the latest Sunderland parkrun winner, posting a personal best time of 17.41, with clubmate Chris Dwyer third thanks to a PB of 18.10.