Seventy Burgess Hill Runners take part in a variety of competitions

The runners fit and ready for the Dark Star event. photo courtesy of Jon Lavis
The runners fit and ready for the Dark Star event. photo courtesy of Jon Lavis

It was a much busier weekend this week for Burgess Hill Runners who had over 70 runners out competing in a variety of competitions.

On Saturday keen Cross Country runners, James Collins and Emma Leeson travelled to Stanmer Park in Brighton to tackle the tough, hilly Cross Country Championships. Both runners put in a superb effort and James was pleased to complete the 15km course in 249th place out of 857 with a time of 1:01:12 whilst Emma completed the 8km ladies race in 44:55.

On Saturday 59 of the club’s runners headed to Worthing for the annual Worthing Lido 4 mile event in the West Sussex Fun Run League. The flat ‘out and back’ run along the promenade is always a popular one for PB hunters and as it formed part of the BHR club championship it was an even more attractive prospect this year. In form Joe Carey led the men home in an impressive time of 24:27 whilst the women were confidently led home by Fay Roberts in a fantastic 29:29. As a whole the club provisionally finished 5th for the day only a few points from the leading team. Prior to the adults event the juniors from the academy showed them how it was done and the talented young runners exploited their excellent academy coaching with Laura Cooper finishing the one mile event in 7:29, Amy Mills in 7:35 and Ryan Sargent in 7:54.

While this was talking place, the Dark Star River Marathon was in full swing, a muddy trail race along the side of the river Adur starting from Shoreham and picking up parts of the popular Downslink trail. At the time of this article official times hadn’t been published, however Paul Sargent finished in 3:34 knocking around 12 minutes off his 2014 time. He was followed by Jon Boxall (4:10), Sharona Harrington (4:25), Jonathan Lelliott (4:44), Neil Dawson (5:09), Darren Chilcott (5:18), Andrew Baillie and Stephanie Harding who finished together in just under 6 hours. Burgess Hill Runners were also manning aid stations in the event, which just creeps into ‘Ultra-Marathon’ territory at 28.2 miles. Jon Lavis, Steve Roberts, Helen Pratt and Paula Ridley spent the day assisting the runners with provisions and encouragement whilst seasoned long distance runner Jan Lavis acted as sweeper.

To round the weekend off, adventurer Kevin Walker, currently out in Australia, completed the Rosebud Victoria 10k in 58:14 in Burgess Hill club colours.