Bumstead and Dobbs are winning veterans

ATHLETICS: THERE was county medal joy for the Thurrock Harriers at the weekend. Running aces Mick Bumstead and Pat Dobbs added to their Essex medal collections. The Claybury cross-country course was relatively dry which pleased Thurrock’s 17 veteran athletes who competed in the Essex Vets Championship.

Bumstead won a bronze in the MV60 age group and Dobbs who scooped silver in the MV70 section. And Bumstead was only beaten by the world class veteran Dave Butler, who also beat the entire 50+ section and by Dave Cox from Woodford who has been a top class runner for over 40 years.

Harriers David Staines said: “It was a great achievement for these two tough runners. It helped them that the course was relatively dry this year. And they showed what class runners they are.”

The Harriers womens section – who needed one more runner to finish in the first 30 to pick up team medals – have seen their numbers decimated by injury of late. But the three who did compete, ran extremely well. Jodie Farrell was in contention for the bronze medal in the FV45 section until the last mile of the race. But a broken shoe lace delayed her and caused her to drop back to fourth slot. She finished 17th overall in the ladies race. Recent Harriers recruit Amy Trencher ran outstandingly well to finish 20th and Sam Tuck also lost places but still manged 28th position.

Scott Rice was a class act in the MV40 section finishing 11th in a very strong field. The Harriers team finished in an encouraging fifth place and included John Green 20th, Don Lawless 32nd and newly rejoined Paul Green 37th. John Russell (47th) and Dave Marchant (48th) both ran solid races.

Schoolteacher, Toby Draper, making his debut in a Harriers vest was 58th, while the club’s other finisher was Mohammed Allili (75th).

Eamonn Shelley, a full county runner in his day, led home the over 50s in 11th place. The top 10 over 50s from Essex would make most National teams such is their strength. Other finishers were Jon Metcalf 24th, Mick Bumstead 30th, Phil Oatham 46th, Bernie Johnson 54th. The team was seventh in the MV50 section.

This weekend all sections of the Harrier’s endurance athletes compete in the third round of the Essex League at Hylands Park in Chelmsford.

For athletics see the THURROCK GAZETTE every Thursday


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