ATHLETICS: Grantham RC members come home with prizes and personal bests

Half marathon runners Matthew Kingston-Lee, Nick Rossington and Andy Atter.

Half marathon runners Matthew Kingston-Lee, Nick Rossington and Andy Atter.

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There was prize winning and personal bests for Grantham Running Club as six members headed to Nottingham on Sunday to take part in the Robin Hood Half Marathon and Marathon.

First to finish for GRC in the half marathon, which incorporated the British Athletics National Half Marathon Championships, was Matthew Kingston-Lee who initially was not overly enthralled with his 1hr 16min 33sec performance until the final race positions were announced. They saw him finish an impressive third in the V40 age category and 29th overall in a race of more than 6,000 finishers:

“I went into the race feeling a little under the weather and my legs didn’t feel good from the moment the starting gun fired. The new opening half of the race was particularly hilly and twisty and I wasn’t really enjoying myself.” commented Matthew after the race.

“When I heard I’d finished third in my age category I was extremely pleased, especially considering the race incorporated the National Championships. The top two were out of sight for me, even if I’d run better than I’ve ever done, so I’m happy to have achieved the best possible result with the minimum amount of effort!”

Finishing together in 1:33:19 were Nick Rossington and Andy Atter. The two worked as a team through the race pacing each other.

Andy was delighted to secure a big new PB, taking over five minutes from his previous best set in 2011: He said: “I knew I was in good shape - I had in target a time of around 1:34:30, so I am delighted to have run as quick as I did on a challenging course.”

Competing in the marathon with more than 1,100 other finishers were Paul Davis, Nick Payne and Gav Meadows. Paul ran a very solid marathon on his debut over the testing 26.2-mile course, coming home in a highly respectable 3:38:18 for 197th position.

Nick also ran a fine race, demonstrated in his final mile being the quickest, to slice just shy of five minutes from his old PB, clocking 3:50:45. Gav, who is targeting the Valencia Marathon in November, felt the efforts of the Equinox a week earlier in the closing miles of the race. Nonetheless, he did well to finish in 3:52:05.