Evans joins elite group of marathon runners
PETE Evans has joined an elite group of runners after completing all six of the World Marathon Majors.
The Stratford AC took part in the Chicago Marathon event on Sunday, having previously completed Tokyo, Boston, London, Berlin and New York.
As a result, Evans will now be rewarded with a prestigious six star medal for his efforts.
His run at Chicago saw him clock a superb time of 3:24:01, placing hin in the top ten per cent of entrants, while he was seven seconds quicker than his time in the New York City Marathon last year.
Three other Stratford AC members took part in the race, together with eventual winner Mo Farah and 45,000 other runners in challenging conditions.
Simon Bolton finished just 11 seconds behind Evans in 3:24:12. His time was a personal best, some 81 seconds quicker than his previous best time, achieved in Edinburgh in May.
Just two weeks after completing the Berlin Marathon, Stratford’s Adam Evans and Sarah Boundy lined up for their second 26.2-miler of the autumn.
Adam Evans’ time of 3:52:58 was just seven minutes slower than Berlin, despite the much worse conditions. Boundy, contesting her fourth marathon of the year, finished in 4:03:53.
“Adam and I found the conditions really tough, with hammering rain, high humidity and some very windy sections,” she said.
“After giving it our all in Berlin two weeks ago, it became apparent pretty quickly that there weren’t going to be any personal bests, so we just tried to make the best of a hard race and soak up the atmosphere.
“The entire course was lined with people cheering. The Americans love any excuse for a party and the Chicago Marathon was no exception.”
Farah won the men’s race in a European record of 2:05:11, while Kenya’s Brigid Kosgei won the women’s race in 2:18:35.
Much closer to home, five Stratford AC members took part in the Chester Marathon.
This was the ninth running of the race and it was once again chosen to be the England Age Group Masters Marathon.
The spectacular route is both historic and scenic, with 19 miles of it run in England and seven in Wales.
It is largely flat with some short hills or gradual climbs, which are predominantly in the second half of the course
Representing England on the day, Stratford’s Kate Sergent clocked a time of 4:35:28, which was 47 seconds quicker than her time last year and she finished an extremely impressive fourth in her age category.
Remarkably, this was only two minutes slower than Sergent’s PB, set in Dublin eight years ago. “There was a great reception from England Athletics with group and individual photos taken at the start,” said Sergent.
“Jan McLure and I kept together for 20 miles but I was struggling to keep pace. The last six miles was a total mental challenge.
“I had my England vest on and was determined to do it justice. I cried at the finish when I found out I had done a minute quicker than last year. They were tears of joy!”
Ryan Bakewell was the first Stratford AC runner to finish, taking more than an hour off his PB with a time of 3:50:15.
Jennifer Morrison-Jones was delighted with her time of 3:54:08, a 28-minute improvement over her previous best time, even though she’s had rather erratic training over the summer with both family and work commitments.
She puts her improvement down to the club’s track sessions earlier on in the year and is delighted to have become a member.
Jan McLure has trained both diligently and extensively for her first foray into a 26 + mile race and this effort paid off handsomely with her recording a time of 4:25:29. Martyn Sergent was just ten minutes slower than last year, recording a time of 5:35:26.
Mohammed Abu-Rezeq won the race in 2:25:20, while Johanna O’Regan was the top woman in a time of 2:45:31.