England Athletics 10km Race Walking titles achieved by Snook and Garcia
The England Athletics 10km Race Walking Championships was incorporated into the Molly Barnett Open Walks, promoted by Coventry Godiva Harriers on Sunday 11th March.
With England’s top walkers in action in Lugano, this left the way clear for the younger generation to take victory.
Junior Chris Snook (Coach: Verity Snook, Club: Aldershot, Farnham & District) took the Men’s 10km Championships in a time of 47.11 that puts him at the top of the UK Under 20 rankings for 2018. Luc Legon (Coach: Noel Carmody, Club: Bexley / Cambridge Harriers) took the silver medal in 48.42. The men’s race started as two-way battle between England’s top Juniors Chris Snook and Tom Partington (Coach: Steve Partington, Club: Manx). These two surged into an early lead ahead of Legon. Partington however was disqualified shortly before the halfway point, leaving the way for Snook to cruise to his first Senior title. Legon took second place. Gianni Epiphani of Manx Harriers held 3rd positon for much of the race, but was disqualified in the closing stages, leaving the way clear for Andrew Miller of Wolverhampton and Bilston to take the bronze medal in the England Championships in 52.17.
In the women’s race there was a three-way race-long battle between Ana Garcia (Coach: Mark Wall, Club: Sheffield & Dearne), Hannah Hunter (Coach: Mark Wall, Club: Manx) and Maddie Shott (Coach: Mick Graham, Club: Belgrave). Maddie took the early lead, before Ana took up the pace after the half way point. A late surge from Hannah meant all three came back together at the 8km point. Under 20 Ana proved the most powerful on the last lap to take victory in 54.18, from Hannah (54.21) and Maddie , who has recently taken up race walking - clocking an impressive 54.24 in her first outing over the 10km distance. This moves Ana to the top of the UK Junior Rankings for 2018.
Thanks to Ian Richards for the report.