A record field of 200 runners lined up for the penultimate event of the Wiltshire Race League at the Calne Clock Change Challenge 10K. With Avon Valley Runners and Chippenham Harriers being neck and neck at the top of the Race League for most of the inaugural season it was not surprising that their athletes made up a sizable percentage of the entry.
Leading from the start was Michael Towler of Avon Valley Runners who proved victorious in a personal best time of 33:19, just 11-seconds outside of the course record and leaving in his wake the in-form Gary O’Brien of Swindon Harriers who had last week won the Devizes Half Marathon, in third place was Gary Dunstone of Chippenham Harriers. The team placings proved tight with Michael Bright, Paul Gillham and Mark Hooper of Chippenham Harriers each featuring in the top-20 positions along with the Leagues top-scorer Joby Hobbs, Warren Wade (who was the first MV40 to finish), Thomas Coney and the Leagues leading MV40 scorer Richard Morgetroyd all of Avon Valley Runners, meaning that the Trowbridge based club just edged out Chippenham Harriers to claim the Men’s League title with just one race to go. David Vaudin of Team Bath AC claimed the MV50 prize and Bernie Hobbs of Avon Valley Runners was the 1st MV60 to finish.
In the Ladies race, Fiona Price of Avon Valley Runners had another great run to take victory in 41:13 just ahead of Denise Grech of Calne SMaRTT and club mate Claire Howard. Finishing as fourth lady, Sarah Sims of Avon Valley Runners took the 1st FV45 prize and 127th placed Rosemary Barber also of Avon Valley Runners was 1st FV55. Along with good finishes from Suzann Large and Sarah Jewers, Avon Valley Runners took maximum League points to just edge ahead of Chippenham Harriers once more, however the Ladies table remains tight at the top and will go down to the wire at the Downton Half Marathon on November 25th, with Chippenham Harriers needing to take 2-points more than their rivals to claim League victory with their superior score difference.