Posting a finishing time of 32m31s, Morpeth Harrier Laura Weightman won the Women’s race at the
annual Ribble Valley 10k Road Race, at Clitheroe in Lancashire on Sunday 31st December,
which also incorporated the North of England Championship.
Running the distance on the road for the very first time obviously did not daunt the Commonwealth Games bound athlete, as she finished in good company in 31st place overall, winning by five places and twenty-nine seconds from Shaftesbury’s Beth Potter, with Vale Royal’s Stevie Stockton finishing 56th overall in 34m27s to take third place in the Women’s section.
It was a good day all round for the North East, with Richmond and Zetland’s Marc Scott
winning the Men’s race in 29m37s, fourteen seconds ahead of Bingley’s World and Olympic Triathlete
Jonny Brownlee, with Shaftesbury’s Richard Horton taking third place, another four seconds adrift.
Another prominent North-East finisher was Gateshead Harrier Callum Johnson, who was fifth in 30m08s.
Nearly 1,300 runners took part in the event, which was run in slightly windy dry conditions,
with temperatures ranging between 6 and 8 degrees centigrade, luckily quite a contrast to previous days,
which had seen temperatures drop to a minus, with intermittent snowfalls.
On a warmer note, this was very much an excellent end to Weightman’s competitive year,
and was a positive note for those Commonwealth Games in Australia in April.
Prior to this, she will be engaging herself into warm weather training in Kenya,
accompanied by her coach and mentor Steve Cram,
who was very upbeat by this performance as the perfect sign off.