Nearly 200 masters athletes took to the streets of Chester on Sunday to compete in the England vs Wales Masters match at the Essar Chester Half Marathon.
The race, which is a culmination of a year of qualification and selection opportunities across England and Welsh Athletics, provided a fantastic occasion to celebrate the lifelong openings offered by distance running and the incredible talent of England and Wales' best masters distance runners.
On a day of stunning results, Kristian Watson (coach: Richard Massey, club: Mansfield Harriers) and Kelly Edwards (Leamington Cycling and Athletics Club) were the leading masters athletes home in 1:09:37 and 1:20:05 respectively, both representing England. Geoff Newton (Bournemouth) with 1:49:36 and Anne Dockery (Keith Brackstone, Westbury Harriers,) with 1:55:45 starring in the V75 category, with the latter running the second fastest F75 time this year.
In the V55 category, Annabel Granger (Nick Anderson, Bristol & West) set the fastest F55 time in the UK this year with 1:22:24 whilst Stuart Dunbar (Saltaire Striders) set the third fastest M60 time in the UK this year running 1:19:24. England took the team prize but the real focus of the day was on strong and positive competition and a celebration of English and Welsh masters talent.
Matt Long, England Masters team leader for the race, said:
“Surely there has never been a better time to be a masters road runner in England. Sunday's race was highly competitive and engendered good natured rivalry, long may it continue.”
Lynn Birchall, representing England and Stadium Runners, said:
“I have had a great day today... It's been a cracking weekend. As a kid you dream of running for your country and to finally do it is a lovely thing.”
For more information on the masters programme and how to qualify check out the masters pages of our website.