Ilford athletes impress at interclub and half marathons

Ilford Athletics Club veterans squad at Loughton Interclub event

Ilford Athletics Club veterans squad at Loughton Interclub event - Credit: Ilford AC

Ilford Athletics Club (IAC) had four male veteran runners venture across town to the home of Loughton AC to compete in their annual interclub vets race.  

Reigning men's team champions IAC were slightly depleted in numbers due to very late notification of the event, but they equipped themselves well and finished third overall on the day in a strong field comprising seven teams.  

Gary Coombes had a fantastic run on the undulating 5.2-mile three-lap course, finishing second overall in a time of 31.15.  

He was closely followed by Ilford debutant Fabrizio Stefanoni in seventh place (33.36), with Danny Holeyman getting the 11th spot (33.59) and Diarmuid McDonnell in 20th place (36.19) making up the team. 

Frieda Keane and Alison Sale of Ilford AC at Roding Valley Half Marathon

Frieda Keane and Alison Sale of Ilford AC at Roding Valley Half Marathon - Credit: Ilford AC

On Sunday, two intrepid Ilford AC athletes travelled to the Essex Town of Billericay to compete in the 25th Annual Billericay Striders 10Km Road Race. 

In ideal weather over the one-lap rural course and against a huge field of over 600 athletes, the two Ilford runners did the club proud. 

First home in 24th position and winning the first male veteran over-60 prize was Terry Knightley, in a season's best time of 38 minutes and six seconds.  

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Knightley had won the race outright back in 1998. 

Following him home in 97th place was the ever-dependable Adam Coals, who clocked 43 minutes and 52 seconds. 

Terry Knightley and Adam Coals at the 25th Annual Billericay Striders 10Km Road Race. 

Terry Knightley and Adam Coals at the 25th Annual Billericay Striders 10Km Road Race. - Credit: Ilford AC

Ilford duo Alison Sale and Frieda Keane took part in the 37th Roding Valley Half Marathon at Ashton Playing Fields. 

Alison, who had been chasing a sub two-hour marathon for a while, was delighted with her PB time of 1:56:21 to finish in 94th place.  

Frieda was equally pleased with her time of 2:08:43, which was just one second outside her best time for the distance and placed her 126th.  

Rob Sargent of Ilford AC travelled north again, this time to compete in the British Masters 5k Championships.  

The event was held on an overcast breezy Sunday morning over four and a half laps at the fast flat cycling circuit in Barrowfield, near Burnley in Lancashire.  

Rob ran a steady race throughout to finish 14th in the M65 age category in 27 mins 14 secs. 

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